It is said the “journey of a 1,000 miles begins with the first step.” Rather they begin with the first thought – our plans. I didn’t make any, so this about failing to plan.
I retired on 9/28/02 following a 29.5 year career as an Assistant District Attorney. Then, rushed like a Banshee to find an RV. I located a new 2001; 31.5’ class “C” Forest River Sunseeker motorhome. It had been sitting on the sales lot until the 2003’s made an appearance for me to claim an exquisite deal.
Then I searched for a laptop, a cell phone, a campground membership, stocked the RV (including a 5-CD/DVD SONY Dream System, TV, VCR and a printer); lined-up family and friends to watch my house, monitor mail and arranged for paying bills while planning my first extended trip. The stress manifested in back spasms in mid-November and the date of departure from the comfort of my Buffalo, NY home.
I learned to wrestle a large RV and learn its unfamiliar systems; given insufficient time for a shake-down cruise between purchase (10/30/02) and departure (12/4/02). 12/21 and 3,924+ miles later (via Buffalo-Memphis-Abita Springs, LA-Sedona, AZ), I was plugged-in on the street at a friend’s house in LaHabra, CA for the holidays. Departing LaHabra 1/2/03; via Camp Verde-Sedona, AZ and arrived in Harlingen, TX for my mother’s surgery, where she passed on 1/23/03.
Returning to La Habra, I boarded a flight to Buffalo, rented a car, and drove to Saratoga, NY to assist Conference Planners at the NYS Association of Drug Treatment Court Professionals. Rather than assist the Conference Planners, I was laid low by a nasty case of flu, my back “went out” again, stranding me in my Buffalo house for a cold two weeks in March, while my RV bathed in 70+ degree Southern California weather at my friend’s house.
I returned to LaHabra in time to move my RV before the police cited me for a misdemeanor and departed for Sedona, AZ and a gathering of friends at Easter time before spending a peaceful week in Taos, NM in early May. Then, I sprinted across I-40 to Memphis, TN for a 4-day workshop, followed by a Shamanism workshop the following weekend in Toledo, OH. I was back in Buffalo 10,685 miles and six months to the day from my departure. Whew!
Was I insane driving 10,684 miles in 6 weeks; having been settled in various locations four and a half months? No, because I enjoyed the best six months of my life and regretted having to return home.
The Banshee remains; tempered by common sense and a new found flexibility. I’m soon to complete my 8th RV travel season; moderating my travel miles and have learned about flexibility. I’ve found a home in remote, Far West Texas, where I’ve spent the majority of the past 7 winters off US 90 in Alpine. I look forward to the adventure while enjoying the remarkable scenery the North American continent has to offer.
Submitted by Barry Zavah of Alpine, TX as a part of the RV Centennial Celebration “Share Your Favorite RV Memory” contest.
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