The End Of An Era

 Posted by at 12:33 am  Nick's Blog
Nov 152016

Yesterday we moved the Winnebago to the storage area here at our little manufactured home community, and Terry and I both found ourselves getting misty eyed. Even though we’ve been living in our house for almost three weeks now, I think storing the motorhome finally made it hit home to us that after over 17 years of wandering the country with no home base, we are not fulltime RVers anymore. For us, it was the right decision to make, and the right time to do it, but it’s still the end of an era.

I know that RVs are inanimate objects, just a collection of rubber and metal and fiberglass, but to us our faithful home on wheels had a personality of its own, and we both felt guilty leaving it in the storage yard after all of the miles it has carried us safely along our country’s highways and byways. But I promised it, and we promised each other, that there are a lot more places we want to go and see, a lot we want to return to again, and many more RV adventures in store for us.


To further reinforce our new status, we now own a barbecue grill. We had a small portable unit in one of the bays of the motorhome that we used when we were traveling, but we wanted something bigger. So now we have this big stainless steel Char-Broil that can cook up a bunch of burgers or steaks all at once. Party at Nick’s house!


We had looked at grills at Home Depot in New Smyrna Beach and in Port Orange, and almost bought one, but I get frustrated dealing with the orange store. Some Home Depot stores give veterans a 10% discount, others only do it on Veterans Day and Memorial Day, some only give the discount to active duty military and those with service-connected disabilities, and it often depends on who is checking you out. I have had some clerks give it to me and others say no, and a couple of employees at the New Smyrna Beach store were downright snotty about it. I don’t go around expecting something for nothing just because I’m a vet, but if a company has a policy of offering a discount to veterans, whatever the policy is, it should be exercised consistently all of the time at every location.

I had mentioned this to a friend of mine, and he said that Lowes gives anybody with a VA card, a retired military card, or active duty a 10% discount every day of the year, with no hassle. Yesterday we drove down to Titusville to run a couple of errands, and since there was a Lowes there I thought I would stop and ask about it. And sure enough, the person at the customer service counter said any vet with a VA card or some other proof of service is entitled to a 10% discount all the time. So we bought the grill, a couple of heavy-duty storage racks for the garage, and a few other things, and the clerk happily gave me the discount and thanked me for my service. You can bet that’s where we will be doing our shopping from now on!

Today is sort of an anniversary for me, but not necessarily a good one. A year ago today I was in the hospital in Temecula, California experiencing some of the worst pain I have ever in felt in my life, due to an attack of acute pancreatitis. I spent four or five days in the hospital and I never want to go back again.

Before this happened my drug of choice was Pepsi, and I was as addicted to it as any junkie was to cocaine or heroin. I always drank two or three cans a day, and many times more than that. And not Diet Pepsi; that stuff is for sissies and wimps. I drank the full strength version. But I have not had a Pepsi, or any other kind of soda, since the day before I went into the hospital. And to be honest, I don’t miss it. I tried to kick the soda habit many times before, and once made it almost six months before I relapsed and was right back where I started. But I figure if I can make it this long, there’s no reason to start drinking it again.

Now, can I say that I have kept off all the weight I lost after I got sick? I could, but I’d be lying to you. I haven’t put it all back on, but I have a lot more than I care to admit. Although, all the work of moving into the house, and just wandering around this big old place, has given both of us plenty of exercise, and we’ve noticed it when we step on the scale! See, you don’t need a gym membership, just go buy a big old house and walk around calling “Marco” and head in the direction of whoever answers “Polo.”

Thought For The Day – If God wanted me to touch my toes, He would have put them on my knees.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  8 Responses to “The End Of An Era”

  1. If I’m going to give you blog titles, you have to give me some, too.

  2. Now that you unpacked the motorhome you can look forward to packing it all back, in a few months. Just a big merry-go-round. We did that for several years until we sold the MH. Been going to Lowe’s for many years because of the run-around Home depot gives you on checking out. At Home Depot I think if there are 2 cashiers, 1 will give the discount and the other will not. Enjoy the new dig’s.

  3. How well I remember the day you watched the MCI go down the road without you in it. At least the Advantage is still by your side awaiting its next adventure.

  4. Nick you can now also become the “occasional camper” When you just want a change of pace, there are plenty of places you can go for a long week-end and prowl around thrift shops and the like, plus find additional stories for us. I always had a camping list to go by so that when you got on the road you discovered you had forgotten the toothpaste, or your medicine, or heaven forbid a change of underwear!

  5. My name is Nick.
    I’m a Pepsiholic.
    And I’ve been clean for 1 year!

    Congrats Nick !

    It made me sad to see your rig in storage too.
    I’m an old softie about things so important……..

  6. I agree, Lowe’s has much better customer service. The local Home Depot has stuff cluttering the aisles and it’s always a hassle to get some help.

  7. The one thing I miss most now that we are on the road 10 months of the year is my gym membership. Now that you are back to “stationary status” you should consider adding a gym membership (and going! 😉 ) to your daily routine.

  8. Wow a stainless steel barbecue grill you just cinched it that’s the sign of a full-time Floridian resident
    And you know most of the guys at lowes by their first name
    Next thing you know you’re going to be signing up for the Florida mature drivers insurance reduced rate
    But on a brighter note
    Yeah but if you live here six months you become full-time resident
    If you live here in less than six months you’re only a Snowbird
    If you own a home in Florida and you’re only here less than six months you’re a homeowner with the tax investment vantage (remember you have two IRS $$ tax deductions now)
    Or think of it at a better way,, you have a contingency plan for Plan B. Today

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