I’m back with more questions from blog readers about RVing, what’s happening in our lives since we hung up the keys, and all kinds of other things. While I try to answer all questions individually, I also share some here occasionally.
Q. Our house is sold, we finally retired, and we are getting ready to live the RV dream that we have wanted to for years. Now, suddenly, when it’s down to the wire, we are both terrified. We thought we had done a lot of research, but we have a million questions. What happens if we break down someplace? What happens if one of us gets sick? Will our grandkids forget all about us? Are we the only ones that are experiencing this, or does it happen to all new fulltimers?
A. If I had a dollar for every new fulltimer or someone about to become a fulltimer who has asked me the same question, I could retire and live like a rich man for the rest of my days. Trust me, you are not alone. Every fulltimer I know asked themselves some of these questions, if not all of them, and more. Relax, you’re going to be just fine. We’ve exchanged e-mails enough that I know that you have all the bases covered, and this anxiety is just something you will work through. A month after you’re on the road, you will be writing to tell me about all the good times you are having, and all of the worries you are expressing now will be in the past.
Q. With COVID-19 all over the country, we are not sure about traveling right now. I know that some campgrounds are open but not how many, but I also know there are so many restrictions in some of the places. My kids are bored sitting at home, and they want to get out and do something, but I don’t know what to do at this point. Are campgrounds closed around the country? Will we be able to find a place to go? What about restrictions when we cross state lines? I heard some states are requiring people self-isolate for 14 days, and I’m asking myself why we should go someplace if instead of seeing the sights we are stuck inside of our RV or have to stay around our campsite, socially distancing from other people.
A. In some states, campgrounds are open, and in other states, they are not. Some states are requiring people who enter to self-isolate. In many places, attractions are closed. If it were up to me, I would stay home. There will be other summers and other trips to take.
Q. I saw the pictures you have of Terry’s latest shawls in yesterday’s blog and on Facebook, and they are beautiful. My question is, from start to finish, how many man-hours, or I should say woman hours, are involved in a project like that?
A. Terry says it usually takes a couple of hours to set up a project on the loom, and then four to eight hours of weaving, and once the weaving is done, anywhere from two to eight hours to take it off the loom, trim it, wash it, press it, tie the fringe and everything else involved. And that does not include design and planning, which can take many hours. A production weaver who just wants to crank out product can do a lot more of the same items in less time than that, but Terry weaves for the love of it, and every creation she makes is unique. No two are quite the same.
Q. With so much changing in today’s world, it seems like everybody hates everybody else, based on race, religion, politics, or something. It’s just so depressing. We have talked about buying an RV and traveling fulltime, or at least in the winters to get out of the cold weather here, but I’m wondering if RVers are also going to be uptight about anything and everything?
A. RVers are a cross-section of society and like any other for people in the world. You will find some sourpusses, grumps, conspiracy theorists, and some that hate other people based on the color of their skin or their choices of who they love or vote for, or hundred other reasons. But you also find many, many wonderful people who are accepting, adventurous, and will become friends for life
Q. I was disappointed that you’re putting the John Lee Quarrels and Big Lake mystery series on hold while you work on this new historical series, Nick. I would have no interest in it. If what you have been doing is working, why change it up?
A. I remember interviewing a popular singer-songwriter back in my newspaper days who told me that his most signature song had made him a millionaire a couple of times over, and at every concert, people wanted him to sing it. He said that as much as he was grateful for how well the song had done for him, he began to hate singing it somewhere around the ten-thousandth time. I don’t hate the Big Lake or John Lee Quarrels series. They have been very good to me, and I will be continuing them, but just like that singer I mentioned, I want to spread my wings and try something new. The idea of a historical family saga has been in my head for years, and it’s time to get it out. Hopefully, you’ll enjoy it, but if you don’t, don’t worry, you’ll be reading some more John Lee and Big Lake books before too long.
Q. I know you’ve lost some people to COVID-19, Nick. I have lost a sister and an aunt, and I get infuriated when people try to compare their losses to cancer or heart disease or some other nonsense. How do you respond to people like that?
A. I have told a couple of people who said more people die of this or that or whatever, that it would be small comfort to them if they lost a child or a family member in an airplane crash and I told them that more people die in car accidents every year. Dead is dead, and grieving is grieving, no matter how we lost that person. Unfortunately, people who are so rude or brain dead that they say things like that just don’t understand how personally offensive and hurtful it is to those of us who have lost loved ones. All they care about is getting their point across, and to hell with your heartache.
Congratulations Kathy Brophey, winner of our drawing for an RV camping journal donated by Barbara House. We had 44 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon.
Thought For The Day – What you are not changing, you are choosing.