Friday, December 31, 2010
So typical of Bl*gger, I had this entire post finished, hit publish and it disappeared. Therefore the second version will not be as good as the first one; it never is. However, here goes an abbreviated version of what I just finished moments ago and lost.
Having purchased The Beast in mid-December of 2009, Denny and I started our travels on New Year's day of 2010 in the tiny town of Van Horn, Texas. Almost immediately the two of us wondered at times at what point the wheels were going to fall off our fifth wheel because as I've documented in several posts, we suffered one problem after another, both mechanical and structural. Despite all of that we somehow managed to travel 8,687.4 road miles, staying at forty-five different campgrounds along the way. Our travels took us from Texas to New Mexico, Arizona, California, Colorado, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Washington, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Florida. Oh, and there was that side trip to Alaska by plane, bus, train and cruise ship.
By exploring Montana, Wyoming and Alaska this summer Denny and I checked off three more states from the fifty we intend to visit. Yes, it took us twelve years to do it, mostly due to family health issues calling us back to Ohio during the prime travel months. We've also been checking off playing golf in those states which is a secondary goal of our travels. Of course in the meantime the two of us have been learning geology, geography, history, what all those states manufacture and/or produce and most importantly we've met people. Funny, aggravating, crazy, fascinating, wonderful people.
Denny and I have always appreciated and been in awe of the beauty of our vast country and the variety of its natural wonders. But we've also been fortunate enough to see it through the eyes of the people from other countries we've met at our national parks and well known tourist spots. We've listened and grinned at the variety of dialects and languages we've heard where the universal word of "wow" predominates when standing at the precipice of a canyon, the base of a thundering waterfall or the narrow, rocky path to the summit of a tall hill. Those who live in Europe and Asia may have a lot of history, but I don't think any country can beat the United States for the sheer variety and number of natural wonders we have.
This year we managed to see the Gulf of Mexico, the Atlantic Ocean, the Pacific Ocean and I had the opportunity to stand in the Arctic Ocean (and froze my feet off!) It has been our most adventurous year as well as the year we put the most mileage on any of our five RVs.
Our intention for the upcoming year is to explore Vermont, Delaware, Maryland, Rhode Island and Connecticut which will mean we'll finally be able to check the final states off our list. Also in our plans are visits to old RVing friends who have sold their rigs and settled down as well as visits to people I've only met through blogging. And once we've done all that? Well, there are a lot of areas in all those states that we've yet to wander.
As the year 2010 draws quickly to a close, the RV Vagabonds wish all of you a happy, healthy and oh-so-prosperous New Year. And if we're lucky, we'll see you someplace down the road....