Nov 282010
 

Thank you to everybody who e-mailed get well wishes to us. We’ve come through the worst of it, and I think we’re going to live after all.

Yesterday afternoon we drove into town and dropped off bundles of sample copies of the Gypsy Journal at several RV parks. We stopped at four or five different RV parks, and it didn’t look like any of them were much more than half full. Is it going to be a slow season in Florida, or did everybody wait until after Turkey Day to hit the road?

After we finished with the RV parks, we stopped at WalMart to get some more meds, and a few things Terry needed to restock our larder. I try very hard to avoid going into any store between Thanksgiving and Christmas, but sometimes things get desperate, and a guy’s gotta do what a guy’s gotta do. I was out of Pop Tarts and Jello pudding cups. 🙂

I was surprised that the store was no more crowded than it normally is. I guess all of the Black Friday shoppers were home sleeping off their ordeal of the day before. Or maybe they’re doing more of their shopping online.

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I’m curious. How many of you blog readers shop online for Christmas gifts, or for things you need yourself? We don’t do it a lot, but last night Terry ordered a pair of those comfy Tee Pee Creepers slippers for somebody, and I’m about to order a Kodak Vi8 camcorder from Amazon for a new project I’m working on. I’m also going to contact Tim and Crystal Ryerson from Inflatable Boats 4 Less and have them send me out an electric pump for my Sea Eagle PaddleSki 435 inflatable kayak.

For fulltimers who move around a lot, being in one location long enough to receive packages can be a problem. RV parks differ in their policies about accepting mail and packages. Some will allow you to have anything sent to you, in care of the office address, others will only allow FedEx or UPS packages, and some will not allow anything at all. I much prefer a campground where I can have both packages and my regular mail sent to me, instead of having to trudge down to the post office and stand in a long line to get my mail by General Delivery.  And since the post office won’t accept FedEx or UPS general delivery packages, it can be a hassle when ordering online.

Today we are leaving the Escapees Sumter Oaks campground and are headed back to the Orlando Thousand Trails preserve so we’ll be ready to get the base plate installed in our Ford Explorer next week. We’re taking a different route back than the one we came in on a week ago, one that my friend George Sharrer tells me will shave about 15 miles off the trip. Once again, Terry will follow me in the Explorer. I’ll sure be glad when we have it set up for towing, I miss her when we travel this way. I don’t think I could enjoy being a solo RVer.

I booked us into the Thousand Trails for fourteen days, though I’m not sure we’ll actually stay that long. If we get everything wrapped up, I really want to get down to the Keys and play for a while.

Thought For The Day – Those that judge us don’t matter. Those that matter don’t judge us.

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Nick Russell

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

  16 Responses to “Back To Thousand Trails”

  1. Here in northeast New Jersey, we are within 1/2 hour of at least 7-8 major malls and shopping centers. I DO NOT LEAVE my house on Black Friday at all. The traffic is worse than rush hour traffic into NYC and the people are too rude. All I can say is I am so thankful this is my last holiday season here in a sticks and bricks. 48 days till full-timing. See you down the road.

  2. For the last few years, I have not left my house to Christmas-shop. I am so lazy, I don’t even have the stuff shipped to me. It goes directly to the recipients. Gift-wrapped if the store will do it.

    So far, I haven’t had any gifts turned down:)

    And I live in Florida, where it is lovely outside this time of year!

  3. It is hard to order on line when traveling. We are now in Kentucky for 3 months working for Amazon.com and I’m enjoying online shopping – from pet food (no petsmart here) to meds.
    Just ordered a new GPS from Amazon.com — I even get an employee discount.

  4. We full-time. We prefer to shop on-line. For Christmas we have the packages shipped to the home of one of our children with instructions not to open the packages. It is a challenge receiving packages in campgrounds. We have been in campgrounds that would NOT receive ANY packages and tried to get the on-line seller to ship via USPS. One etailer in particular wanted an additional $7 to take something to the post office. He did not get my order.

  5. Peter orders lots of stuff online: books, electronics (better prices). I don’t do much of that except I do order from Ebay occasionally. What we discovered when we travel is that UPS or Fed X will ship stuff to you at one of their offices. So we find the local office or wait until the local office is close and then order. All you have to do is show your ID and you get your package. Or we have stuff sent to friends/family who hold it for us until we get there.

    Black Friday – no way. I stayed at home and enjoyed getting up late. We find that the prices are not really that good. If you watch all year round, know your prices, look for sales, you can find stuff for similar prices to Black Friday. All the crowds, shoving and pushing – UGH!!!!!

  6. Hello Nick, I will begin with how we learned about The Gypsy Journal, we were at Chesapeake Bay Thousand Trails Campground recently and found a sample Gypsy Journal, enjoyed the read and realised a few days later you were actually there as well but deferred from knocking on your door as we are usually out early for our daily walk and did not want to wake you, the day that we decided we would knock you had left, since then we have been keeping up with you blog, it is usually the first read after our daily visit with Our Heavenly Father. But the main reason for the comment today is to thank you for the info on the Distant Network Services a few days ago, I contacted Direst TV yesterday and after a short phone call our west coast feed was reinstated and we are again “Happy Campers” . Thank You again and hope to see you Down the Road.

  7. This is our second winter in Florida and the park does not fill up until AFTER Christmas.

  8. Pop tarts and pudding cups! Boy, it doesn’t take much to keep you happy. Glad to hear you’re feeling better. As far as online ordering, we found it a big help for Christmas shopping when on the road. It’s nice to get free shipping from Amazon.com and the gift wrapping was only $4 -$5. All we had to do was call the kids and make sure they got their gifts, which they did in less than a week. We are all done for this year and can sit back and enjoy the holidays. On a topic from earlier in the week, my wife did the entire Thanksgiving dinner in our RV. We had the works, turkey, stuffing, potatoes & gravy and desert. The best thing is now we have the left overs. I love turkey sandwiches!

  9. I just placed a couple of orders on-line. My frustration is that one of the sellers did not tell me they only ship USPS until I had already entered the park’s address in the shipping address. The site wouldn’t let me go back to change it so I had to start over from step one to change it to General Delivery! If this hadn’t been the only place I can buy the socks I love I probably would have gone somewhere else at that point. I told the seller about this problem in their comments section; I wonder if I’ll hear from them?

  10. do all my shopping online now and have done so for the last 7 years or so…

  11. I’ve used online ordering for over 12 years, from back when Amazon only sold books. LOL! It’s so much easier…especially for us with our transportation being either a Freightliner (9mpg) or the motorcycles (limited carry capacity).

  12. I have gone nearly all on-line for bill payments and shopping Chase pays all the postage if you pay bills thru their service. I have purchased all of the electronic supplies for my seminar programs (projector, remote etc) on line and the only Christmas shopping I do is at the Bank. My grandkids get toys and clothes in volume from their parents, aunts, uncles and other grand parents. I started about 10 years ago providing them all with US Savings Bonds for B-Day and Christmas and the 4 of them (1more on the way) now have a sizable fund which becomes theirs at 18 to use for education or wedding at their option. beats something they will use for 2 month and set aside plus they are bought for half price always. My dad started the tradition for my kids and my daughter paid for her total wedding with hers – they had been living together for 5 years and had a 4 year old at the time so I opted out of the program, and one son paid for his entire last semester of college. Plus I hate shopping any time of the year and have not been in a mall at holiday time for over 20 years.

  13. We are happy to hear that you both are feeling better. Mike does the ordering on line. He uses it mostly for our e-books the last thing he did order was one of the auction items that cost him two-cents to buy then six dollar for shipping. I agree that getting packages while on the road is hard. We have been lucky when we have to get a package. Our mail service will contact us and then we check with the park we are at. Most of them it seems will accept UPS or Fed X. We have not ventured out to do any shopping yet. We are hoping that a lot of the people have finished and it will not be to bad. I know I am dreaming on this part. We will ship all the items UPS since we know that our son will not have to worry about not being there for it. He works for UPS and will be able to intercept the package. Every year it seems people who are not honest will take packages off the porch. UPS has a policy at least in California they will not leave a package on the porch. They only use this policy during the holiday season.

  14. I also do not venture out on Black Friday before noon. One son wanted a 42″ TV
    that Target had for $298.00 so he got in line between 2:30 and 3:00 AM. Before
    he even got in the door they were gone! Wonder how many they had.
    As the majority of full-timers are retirees why not do your shopping the first
    thing in the morning or early afternoon weekdays and avoid weekends. I enjoy
    shopping when I know what I’m looking for and with 7 children plus 6 of their
    spouses and 10 grandchildren I have a lot to do. However, except for the 3
    youngest, they usually get a couple gifts and then either gift cards or money.
    Teenagers always like money or itune cards. We still live in our sticks and bricks
    house but spend 3 months in Texas but do not leave until after Christmas. The
    family all comes home (they are scattered around the Mich. & Ohio) and we
    enjoy being here with them. But, as you say, to each his own.
    Merry Christmas to all!

  15. I have shopped on-line more in the last few days then I have in my lifetime! I am afraid it is way too easy! lol well, there goes the budget. Seriously, I have found some great deals on things we needed/wanted anyway. I try to buy all my business stuff while we are home for 6 wks. so it is easier to have it delivered. I am also having some stuff shipped free to the local Wally World store for pick up. The most I have paid for postage this past week was one charge of $3. Can’t beat that! We needed new tires for the towd and found them online at Wal Mart cheaper than anywhere else. Bought online but shipped to store free (not sold at store)
    Went to store and talked to the tire guy the other night and he will mount and put them on for $7 each and give us lifetime balancing and rotation. Just the mounting and install is $5 ea. so it’s a no brainer. I like to touch and look at certain things before buying so sometimes I go and look then buy on-line cheaper. Whatever works!

  16. Hi Nick,

    Always enjoy you Blog daily. I used to read you weekly in Pinetop back in those days.
    I found last spring that in Prescott Valley and Dewey Az. those P.O. accepted packages from Fed Ex when they were addressed to me at USPS General Delivery, when the shipper only used Fed-Ex. In fact Fed Ex told me they delivered packages to the P.O. every day between 9:30 and 10am . Maybe I got lucky or I found helpful Postmasters in those small towns. Safe travels to you both.

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