Tuesday, September 11, 2007

"WHY AN RV?? (Recreational Vehicle)

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. When he came home he worked at various things such as driving trucks & motorcoach buses. He enjoyed doing the bus tours down 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 the highways & bi-ways 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.

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 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 now a talented musician.

Thanks to some of my parents interests plus my own, I have been able to tie them all to-gether & interest 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 Class A motorhomes. Kelly's Dad was a U.S. Marine during the second world war & fought on the Island of Iwo Jima. Kelly gets her sense of adventure, determination, & love for the outdoors from her Dad!! Her Mother worked in the school system & I think it's here where she 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 that 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 19?? Gulf Stream Class C . Went all the way down to Big Bend in Texas during the winter of 2003 with the Gulf Stream but sold it when we got back because it was too small. 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 Motorhome or truck & 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. When we arrived home in the spring we traded the truck & fifth wheel in on a 33' 2003 Damon Challenger 329 motorhome. And, that's where we're at to-day.

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 almost two to one because the husbands had died & now the ladies had to travel on their own. I saw this over & over again. In the last 3 years I have been driving a mobility van part time in our area & the people I transport are all in wheelchairs & mostly elderly. I am frequently in & out of various nursing home facilities so I see first hand what the latter years of 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 the late summer of 2006 & we set our plans in motion.

We know it's a big gamble & a risk but we've seen tooooooooo many people who have waited toooooooo long to live their dreams only to end up sick, incapacitated, in a care facility, or deceased too early............. and, THAT is WHY we made our decision to travel now while we can!! We may one day regret our decision or we may not. Only time will tell, so stay tuned, wish us luck, & ride along with The Bayfield Bunch as we chase our dream around the next bend, over the next hill & into the sunrises & sunsets of this beautiful land of ours ...................

And............to whoever you are, if you have read this far you are to be commended for your patience, perserverance, & determination!! Toodles............... AL. (aka Mr. Blabberfingers)

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