WHY THE RV LIFE??
Why the RV Snow Bird lifestyle?? Although we haven't been asked this question directly, I'm sure there are some friends & family members who have wondered. First, a little background on Al......
My Dad was in the Canadian Air Force stationed on Canada's east coast during the second world war. Upon returning home he worked at various things such as driving trucks & Motorcoach buses. He enjoyed doing bus tours into the States, especially The Grand Old Opry. He also worked for the Stratford Parks Department in Stratford Ontario for many years until his retirement. Some of my Dad's hobbies were fishing, camping, & traveling. From these things my Dad did & enjoyed, I feel I've inherited some of the interests & traits I have to-day. For example, my love of driving like my Dad did, my Dad's sense of adventure when he was in the Air Force. (I was in the Navy) His love of the outdoors has been passed on to me as well, except for fishing. I always felt sorry for the poor little worms.....and the fish. I also have my Dad's sense of humor.
From my Mother I received the gift of love for animals & a genuine appreciation of music. She played piano by ear & we always had music playing on the radio or on a record player when I was growing up. Although I can't play any musical instruments, that musical talent has passed through me to my son Sean who is himself a talented musician.
Thanks to some of my parents interests plus a bunch of my own, I have been able to tie them all to-gether & ingrain myself with the RV bug. The driving, the sense of adventure, & the love of the outdoors all have things in common. When you throw in some great traveling music with my love of photography & writing, it all begins to take shape.
Kelly comes from an RV family from way back. She remembers her 2 sisters & brother all loaded up in the station wagon heading down the road to various campgrounds here & there. She is from Spencerport NY & her Dad was an avid fisherman who liked to bring the whole family up to Canada on fishing & camping adventures. They later moved from station wagons to Class C RV's & finally a Class A Motor Home. Kelly's Dad was a U.S. Marine during the second world war who fought & was wounded on the Island of Iwo Jima. Kelly gets her sense of adventure, determination, & love for the outdoors from her Dad!! (Kelly's Dad died in August of 2010) Her Mother worked in the school system for many years & I think it's here where Kelly has inherited her academic smarts, patience, & easy going manner. All very conducive to the RV lifestyle, so it was a natural progression for Kelly to one day gravitate to-wards the adventures of the open road.
From the first day Kelly & I met, it was apparent we had a lot of things in common. Over the years we talked more & more of someday owning a Motorhome & traveling around this big beautiful land of ours. In 1997 the dream began to take shape. We bought our first rig, an old 17 foot 1979 Dodge Centurion Class C. It was kinda beat up but it was a start. Next came a 24 foot Prowler travel trailer in 1999. From there, we shifted back to a 23 foot Ford 19?? Gulf Stream Conquest Class C . Went all the way down to Big Bend National Park in southern Texas during the winter of 2003 with the Gulf Stream but sold it when we got back because the rig had some issues. Somewhere between then & 2006 we acquired a couple of extra doggy pals so when we decided to get another RV we had to think bigger. After waffling back & forth between a Motor Home or truck & 5th wheel trailer we decided on the truck & trailer combination & headed off for New Mexico & Arizona in the winter of 06/07. The 2004 GMC Sierra 6.0 & the 2005 Rockwood fifth wheel worked well to-gether but it didn't take us long to realize we should have decided on the Motorhome!! Nothing against trucks & fifth wheels but it just wasn't the right set up for us, especially traveling with 3 dogs at the time. When we arrived home in the spring of 07 we traded the truck & fifth wheel in on a 33' 2003 Damon Challenger Motorhome. Had that Motorhome until February of 2013 when we sold it & purchased a smaller 2013 23' Class C Sunseeker. Traded that 'too small' Sunseeker in a few months later on a 2011 26' Class C Winnebago Access. Sold that in the summer of 2014 after buying a 2003 37' Triple E Commander Class A Motorhome.
Now. what does all this have to do with, "Why an RV!!" (they don't call me Mr. Blabberfingers for nothing you know:))
For a number of years I drove an Airports transportation van based in Stratford Ontario taking people to & from Pearson International Airport in Toronto. I would quite often hear conversations amongst passengers & the one common thread I picked up over the years from people heading off or coming home from vacations, was........... "I wished we had done this when we were younger & still had our health." Women travelers outnumbered men travelers because the husbands had died & now the ladies had to travel on their own. I saw this over & over again. From 2004 to 2010 I had driven a mobility van part time in our area & the people I transported were all in wheelchairs & mostly elderly. I was frequently in & out of various nursing home facilities so I saw first hand what the latter years of a person's life can unfortunately be like. Not good!!!! Kelly & I made the decision a long time ago that if we were ever in a financial position to get out & see the country, hike the canyons & trails, walk the desert floors, travel the mountain passes & enjoy the outdoors we love so much, we had better get at it while we were both still in reasonably good health. The financial opportunity presented itself in late summer of 2006 & we immediately set our plans in motion.
We knew it was a big gamble & a risk but we had just seen too many people who had waited too long to live their dreams only to end up sick, incapacitated, in a care facility, or deceased. And that is why we made our decision to travel while we could. We have never regretted that decision, & have never looked backed........................:))