I get a lot of questions from Gypsy Journal subscribers and blog readers, and while I try to answer all of them individually, occasionally I like to share some with the folks here, usually because they are ones I receive more than once from different people.
Q. Now that you and Terry have bought a house, do you plan to do any more traveling in your motorhome?
A. Definitely. For the last few years we’ve been spending several months every winter here in Florida, bouncing from one Thousand Trails campground to another every two or three weeks. Now, instead of moving around all the time, we will sit still here in our house, and come summertime, or whenever hitch itch sets in, we’ll be on the move again exploring new places in our RV and going back to some old favorites.
Q. What has been the biggest single adjustment you’ve had to make moving from a motorhome into a house?
A. I think Terry would agree that the biggest thing is that we don’t spend as much time side-by-side as we used to when we were in the Winnebago. I would be at my desk writing and she would be at the table/desk combination working on the computer, or else working on a project on her loom. We were almost never out of sight of each other, and we like that closeness. Now she’s way off in one side of the house in her loom room/office and I’m way over here in my office writing. So every once in a while we have take a break just to go see each other and say “I love you.”
Q. You talked a lot about how much you like the Pacific Northwest coast, so why did you choose Florida instead for your home?
A. It was a hard choice to make. Our two favorite places are this area on the Florida coast and the Long Beach Peninsula in Washington. We came very, very close to choosing the latter, but we both have a bit of arthritis and found that the constant cold and dampness up there, especially during the fall and winter, were just too uncomfortable for us. So we will visit in the summer when it’s too hot to hang out here in Florida, and leave before it gets too cold.
Q. It’s been a long time between books. When will your next book be out?
A. I never give a definite release time in advance for a book because when I do, something always gets in the way. My goal this year was to release at least four books, and hopefully five. I hit number four when Stillborn Armadillos, the first book in my John Lee Quarrels series, was published in August. I had planned to have my next Big Lake book out in October, but moving and getting settling into the house put me way behind schedule. I’ve got about 15,000 more words to go and I really hope to get it out by the end of the month.
Q. Do you plan to continue publishing the Gypsy Journal, and if so, how will you get stories for new issues when you’re not traveling as much?
A. Yes, it’s business as usual here at the Gypsy Journal. I have a bank of well over 200 stories about places we have visited in our travels but never had room to fit into the paper. So I’ve got lots of material to put out many, many more issues, in addition to the new places we will be seeing in the months when we are traveling.
Q. What would make you finally hang up the keys permanently?
A. At this point, the only thing I can think of would be death, a serious illness, or a decline in our ability to travel safely. We still love the gypsy lifestyle and as long as we can travel, we will.
Q. Have you considered downsizing to a smaller RV now that you have the house? If so, what kind of rig would you consider?
A. We’ve talked about that, and gave some consideration to a medium-size Class C motorhome, or even a travel trailer. But we both really love the floor plan in our Winnebago Ultimate Advantage motorhome, it’s almost paid for, and it’s in great shape mechanically. So we really don’t see the benefit of switching to something smaller, and taking on a longer payment term. I don’t foresee us making a change.
Q. Is there one place that you’ve always wanted to travel to in your motorhome, but have not made it to yet, and will you?
A. When we first started out we both really wanted to go to Alaska. But the logistics of doing the print newspaper while we were up there made it impossible. And as time has gone on, we both decided that there’s so much to see and do here in the lower 48 that if we do go to Alaska, we probably will do it on a cruise, not in an RV. I know it’s a beautiful place, and one heck of an RV adventure, so who knows? We might change our mind about that at some point.
Q. Have you ever done any RVing in Canada or Mexico?
A. No. As I said above, there is so much to see and do here that we have no desire to go anywhere else. We will never live long enough to see all of the places we want to see right here at home.
Q. What is your one biggest regret about the fulltime RV lifestyle, or the most common regret you hear expressed by other fulltimers?
A. I don’t think either one of us has any regrets about it. We’ve had some wonderful experiences, met some fantastic people, and have memories that are more precious than gold. The most common regret I hear expressed by others is that they waited too long to start out, and wish they had done it sooner. Terry and I were both 46 when we hit the road fulltime, so that really doesn’t apply to us. We were very fortunate to be able to begin this adventure when we did and to make our living doing something we love on the road for well over 17 years.
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It’s Thursday and time to kick off a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Crazy Days In Big Lake, the third book in my Big Lake mystery series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.
Thought For The Day – It is better to be alone than to be with someone who makes you feel alone.