What Can I Say?

 Posted by at 12:34 am  Nick's Blog
Sep 172012

Somebody sent me an e-mail yesterday saying that my blog was going to get boring if all I wrote about was sitting around the RV doing nothing. What can I say? Yesterday was a repeat of the day before. We got up, we checked e-mail and our favorite blogs, I fiddled around a little bit with the manuscript I’m working on, Terry set up her loom and began experimenting with it. Just another quiet day at home. And while it may seem boring to some readers, we’ve been enjoying the downtime.

I’m never sure what to do when I get an e-mail like that. If we are traveling in the Midwest, some people complain that the blog and the Gypsy Journal don’t have anything about the Southwest, or the Northwest, or wherever. And when we’re in those areas, we get complaints that we’re not writing about the Midwest or someplace else.

The blog reflects our day-to-day life and while the lives of fulltime RVers may have a lot more travel and adventure than other lifestyles offer, we also have days or even weeks when we don’t do a lot. Fulltiming is not a permanent vacation of sightseeing and driving across the country, even for retirees who don’t work or run a business on the road like we do. Nobody has the budget or the stamina for that. But I’ll try to come up with something new once in a while to keep from boring everybody.

On another topic, a soon-to-be fulltimer wrote wanting to know what campground memberships we have, and what they should look into before they hit the road. At one time or another we have had just about every membership out there. These days we have Passport America, Thousand Trails Elite (which includes all Thousand Trails, NACO, Leisure Time Resorts, Outdoor World, and Mid-Atlantic Resorts), and Resort Parks International (RPI). I also belong to the Elks, Moose, and Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), and many of those lodges and posts welcome members traveling in their RVs to spend the night.

We consider Passport America to be the best value in camping anywhere. They have something like 1,700 affiliated campgrounds where members can stay for half price, and the yearly dues are less than $50. Most members recoup their membership dues on their first trip.

A campground membership in an organization like Thousand Trails can be a very good investment, or a complete waste of money. It all depends on if you use it enough to make it worth the cost of membership. Our membership dues are about $550 per year, which gives us 50 nights of “free” camping, and after that we pay $5 per night. Last year we spent over six weeks at the Orlando Thousand Trails Preserve, with full hookups and 50 amp electric, and it only cost us $5 per night. For Florida in the wintertime, that’s basically free.

As of last night, we have spent 40 nights in the system since our membership year began, which was April 1. And we have 65 more nights reserved through early January. If my calculator is correct, that is $825 for 105 nights of camping, which comes out to $7.85 per night. And every one of those nights has been in a full hookup RV site. If you’re thinking about a Thousand Trails membership, look at the used market; there are a lot of memberships out there for free or almost free that the owners no longer want. Also, look at the new Zone memberships; if you limit your traveling to just one part of the country they can be a great deal.

Thought For The Day – You can’t always control who walks into your life, but you can control which window you throw them out of.

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Nick Russell

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

  14 Responses to “What Can I Say?”

  1. I always find your blogs interesting (even with the downtime), but I personally would love to hear more about how you guys find room for all Terry’s toys!?! Keep us posted on how the loom works out. Have always wanted to weave, but would have to have something that folds down pretty small. Does she still have her spinning wheel (I had to let mine go when we went FT) and sock knitting machine (my needles don’t take up much room…lol) ? And where does she stash all the fiber? More of her wonderful recipes would be great too…hint, hint.Gee, maybe I should have just emailed her, huh?

  2. It’s your turn to be lazy Nick. Don’t worry about those that think differently. Writing books, putting out a newspaper is far from being lazy. There’s a ton of research involved and a lot of, going here going there. It’s not wrong to enjoy your life, just do it!!!

    Have a great day Nick and Terry!!

  3. Don’t forget about the Escapees RV Club membership, which offers low rates at their own parks plus discounts at other parks ranging up to 50%. We also enjoy reading your blog even when you and Miss Terry are experiencing downtime. That’s the reality of full-time RVers.

  4. We bought all four zones in the Thousand Trails membership for 499.00 at the Tampa RV show last January. We get 60 nights free camping and 3.00 a day once we use up the 60 nights. We can book 90 days out, which is nice, too. The Thousand Trails parks number about 83 in the whole country, so it’s not as many parks as other memberships, but they are pretty well distributed across the U.S. The RV shows are a good place to look for the Thousand Trails offers, but the deals are not offered at all RV shows. The zone TT membership that we purchased also enable us to stay for 99.00 a week for 7 weeks at the Bar Harbor/Encore campground–Mount Desert Narrows.

    I think people who complain about a blog getting boring, aren’t living their own life the way they expected and hoped.

  5. Look at the mileage you got out of that email! Your blogs are always interesting, whether you talk about what you see or what projects you and Miss Terry are working on – don’t change a thing! Welcome to ‘a day in the life’ of a full-timer.

  6. Hey Nick, It’s YOUR blog, and YOUR life! If you try to please every rube who “lady dogs” about it, you’ll go stark raving mad. I for one, and I like to think I’m in the majority, enjoy your blog, and hell, your writing. Do not change a thing. (said twice) As full-timers ourselves, (who work) we can absolutely relate to everything you say. Keep up the good work.


  7. Go right ahead & have those lazy days, your entitled to them. Everyone needs days even weeks to just sit around & do not much of anything. Just because we are fulltimers & traveling like you said we don’t always have to be in vacation mode & constantly sightsee. we need to just sit & relax too.
    We belong to PA & use it often, we are Lifetime members with PA. They do have Lifetime membership you need to ask about it. We use the Escapees parks alot too.

  8. You present it as it is! Full timing is just the same as living in a stick built house, some days are more exciting than others. You have no obligation to entertain everyone all the time, perhaps those people need to cultivate a bit more of a life themselves? We love reading your blog every day and when you do absolutely nothing…it makes me feel like less of a slacker!

  9. As a full-timer and a friend, I consider you a member of my extended family, so I enjoy hearing about the little things that happen in your life every day. I like the fact that I can count on your blog to show up without fail every morning. Besides, as I have said before, your writing is so good that I would read the legai notices in the newspaper if you wrote them.

    Now if only Miss Terry would start a blog about her adventures in fiber arts and gadgets……….:-)

  10. Mike and I enjoy your blog, it does not matter what you write it is interesting to us and it also lets us know that you are doing OK. It also gives us ideas to what we might want to do and see. Life as you said of a full time RV’ers is not going somewhere all the time but just enjoying life period and being blessed to be able to move around with your house when you want to.

  11. Just keep on doing what you’ve been doing for so long. Your blog is a bright spot in my day.

  12. Well. . .I think if someone doesn’t like what you are writing about, or it bores them, they should just hit the “unsubscribe” button. . .and quit their belly achin’. . .just sayin’. . .

    Sometimes there’s just not much goin’ on. . .but we love those days too!

    A funny cartoon said, “If you don’t like your life, change it. . .you’re not a tree.”

    So true. . .just keep doin’ what’cher doin’ Nick & Terry. . .we love it!


  13. I read your blog every day and enjoy it. To those rubes who complain, get a life. Nick’s blog is FREE and he writes every day. Can they say that? Ignore the complainers and just keep doing what you are doing. Love you two. Connie B.

  14. Thanks to all you bloggers I purchased a Passport America this year..It’s been great!! I am now in Oregon and just visiting campgrounds I may not have stopped at before..With the price being 1/2..what the heck? The good one’s I’ll visit again. Thanks to all of you.

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