Note: This is a blog from five years ago today when we announced a major change in our lifestyle. At that time we thought we would continue to travel in our motorhome part of the year, but as it turned out that didn’t happen for a variety of reasons, among them problems with the RV after being in storage for over a year, and discovering that we enjoyed traveling in Terry’s Pacifica as much as we did RVing, and it was easier for us to get off on the little-traveled backroads the RV was just too big to explore in.
The title of this blog is also the title of my favorite Jimmy Buffett song, which he wrote after his first visit to Key West, Florida. If you have never listened to it before, check it out at this YouTube link. Miss Terry and I can relate to that song today.
As most of you know, for the last year or two we have been looking for a place to serve as our winter base and someday retirement home. We had certain criteria that we were not willing to compromise on. One was that if we found a place, it had to be no more than 30 minutes from the beach. Both of us find a lot of peace whenever we are on a beach. And it had to be a beach big enough that we could fly our Revolution kites. We also wanted to be in a fairly small town, but with access to a city with good medical services if we should ever need them.
We weren’t in a big hurry, we knew we wanted to be somewhere here in Florida, and we both felt like we would know it when we saw it.
But to be honest, my medical issues last year put a real scare into me. Not for myself, I know I’m not going to live forever, none of us are. But I really wanted Miss Terry to have a place if something were to ever happen to me.
So when we were in Florida last winter we spent a lot of time looking on both coasts.
We looked all over the state, and zeroed in on the area between New Smyrna Beach and St. Augustine, on the Atlantic coast. It’s about 60 miles to Orlando, but the pace is a lot slower over here. And there are some great beaches, including miles of unspoiled beach on the Canaveral National Seashore, one of our favorite places. This is where we found our home.
When we were here last May we found a manufactured home community called Terra Mar Village, which is in Edgewater, about 10 miles south of New Smyrna Beach. It is located on the Intercoastal Waterway and about a mile or two as the crow flies, directly across the water, is the Canaveral National Seashore. Terra Mar has two swimming pools, a clubhouse, a 300 foot fishing dock, and a private boat launch. We have stood on the dock and watched manatee and dolphins playing in the water. There is also a fenced in RV/boat storage area.
One of the places we looked at here was about 1600 square feet, which was larger than we wanted, and our first impression was that it was too much home for our needs. It started life as a manufactured home, and then additions were put on both sides, as well as an 1100 square foot attached garage. The garage alone is nearly four times as large as our Winnebago motorhome!
We looked at it, went back and looked a second time, and then a third time, and yesterday afternoon we closed on it. So after 17 and a half years of fulltime RVing, we are now homeowners once again. We’re both very excited by it.
The house has a living room, kitchen, three bedrooms, two bathrooms, another room that is somewhere around 300 square feet that will be Miss Terry’s loom room, a room that will be an office for me, a laundry room, and a small utility room. We keep joking that we will probably get lost and have to yell “Marco” and “Polo” to find each other.
Are we done with RVing and hanging up the keys? No way! As it is, we have been spending anywhere from four to five months every year in Florida, packing up the motorhome and moving from one Thousand Trails park to another every two or three weeks. Now we can stay put and spread out. I can get a lot of writing done, Terry can weave to her heart’s content, not to mention fishing and kite flying. And then we will take off again for new RV adventures.
While we have loved fulltiming, have had some wonderful adventures, and met and made friends with many fantastic people, we are tired. While we enjoy being at Point A and Point B and Point C, we don’t enjoy the travel very much between those places anymore. Mainly because then we had to move on to Point D, and Point E, and you get the picture. It just wasn’t that much fun anymore. And we both always said when fulltiming stopped being fun, we would do something different. Now we will travel a few months a year, return to our home for a while, and then take off and do it again when hitch-itch sets in. Frankly, we are looking forward to it.
Congratulations Kimmy McLemore, winner of our drawing for an audiobook of The Driving Lesson by my friend Ben Rehder. While Ben writes some excellent mysteries, including the wildly popular Blanco County series, this tale of a boy and his grandfather on an unplanned road trip across the country is a coming of age story that will tug at your heartstrings. We had 30 entries this time around. Stay tuned, a new contest starts soon. Note: Due to the high shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – The people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world are the ones who actually do.