The passing of the torch - Helen's last day of RV ownership and Joe's first!
As I prepared to retire from 35 years of teaching last June, my husband Joe was preparing for a grand adventure. Finally we could have time together for extended travel! For his 2011 sabbatical from Whittier College where he teaches Religious Studies, he planned a national tour of minor league baseball parks, where he would sing the national anthem. This ambitious plan supports his goal of completing the research for his next book, "Perfect Pitch: The National Anthem for the National Pastime".
What I thought would be a quiet year of resting and reading, gardening and gabbing, instead became a year of planning and discovering and great new learning. Once we realized that the only way this could work would be to travel in an RV, we were surprised to find that sharing our dream paved the way for the dreams to come true. Helen Kelly, a dear friend, was ready to sell her beloved 1994 Fleetwood Flair, as she realized that this adventure was something special. Her motorhome had been kept up beautifully, and was ready to go when we bought it in January.
We had to learn how to use it, of course, and took her excellent advice to get lessons right away. With an initial two day training under our belts, we were brave enough to head out on a five night trip that would combine a family vacation and a "shakeout" trip-- discovering what sorts of things needed attention. As it turned out, what was most needed was our ability to grasp just what we needed to learn to manage the complex systems of a motorhome.
The trip was a complete success-- which is to say that a five hour delay as we began our return showed us that very small electrical problems-- corrosion on light bulbs and such, can throw off a schedule that's too tightly tweaked. Luckily, we'd allowed some wiggle room, and the wallet took more of a beating than the schedule.