Wednesday, July 4, 2012


Freedom!!  What a great topic for July 4th -- US Independence Day! First off, I'd like to share that this post topic is being inspired by a Facebook group that we belong to.  Recently a question came up that inspired this as topic for a "Blog Crawl" of posts.  I hope that you will take time to read through all of the posts -- I promise you'll truly enjoy the journey!

So, the question/topic:  "Did you find you were happy with your life/job/home when you decided to travel -- or were you unhappy?  In other words, were you making a major change because something was missing and you felt the travel lifestyle would provide a better life for your family?  Or did you decide to travel because you inherited the soul of a gypsy and couldn't be held down?"

Wow! Were we unhappy?  Um no... were we especially content... um no... I'd say that we were just existing an average life; just 'doing' life.  You know, that 'trying to achieve the American Dream' thing?  You know that part that we're taught practically from infancy that you go to school, then graduate and either go to college (or in my family not...) and get a good job, buy a house (you know that one that has the 'white picket fence'??) and live happily ever after.  

I had that life.  I had the house, the cars, the "toys" and all the bills that go right along with them.  And then I got a divorce.  And then I buried my mother. And then I realized that my life to that point had been what others expected of me.  Not what truly was my 'joy' ... my 'happiness'... That "American Dream" thing... um, it wasn't for me.  

So I, along with my 14 year old son left my hometown (in the Sacramento Valley of CA) and headed for the hills (the Sierras to be more exact... Reno, NV) to visit friends and family and then the goal was head for the coast (thinking Oregon at the time, but any coast would do...)  I decided that one way or another I was going to get rid of my car and get a truck and fifth wheel and show my son the world! ... Well at least the U.S.

Um... well... that didn't happen.  You see, I met this guy... Nope! He wasn't in my "Plan"... Nope! Not at all... Neither was being offered a job (that I had not applied for) nor staying in Reno, Nevada for any extended period of time. And that guy, I turned him down for a date more times than I can count, but he wouldn't take no for an answer. Go figure.

It turned out that he's a pretty cool guy... he's sweet, and a bit chivalrous ... always makes me feel very special and safe. Those are good things.  And he has a bit of an adventurous spirit... it seemed promising that he would want to travel the same as I did when he shared with me that he remembers his grandfather arriving at his house, when he was little, with a very distinctive horn on his Avion camper.  

He had cherished memories of traveling across country with his grandpa and looked forward to doing that himself someday.  However, his thoughts were that traveling as his grandfather did was reserved for retirees.  It took me eight years to convince him otherwise.  

Well, fast forward a bit... In 2006 we decided to live in an RV while Hubby (yes, I married him <<grin>>) attended a Northern California University.  I thought it would be a great 'first step' into the fulltime life.  We traveled a bit when Hubby was off school for breaks, but that was pretty much it.  

In summer 2010 we took a three month trip around the U.S. through 16 states -- over 10,000 miles! Just us: our then 11 yo. son and our Pug -- in our Suburban -- tent camping and visiting family and friends along the way!  What a blast!! ~ Yup! He's hooked!! So am I!! 

An interesting perspective came out of our 2010 Adventure, when we got back and looked at the map where we had traced all of the roads we had traveled... It was just this tiny, thin little line.  There was still so much we had not seen... switch that... there was still SO MUCH yet to see!  And we decided that we were committed to seeing more -- and sharing more with our son.  

We've found that we love spending time together as a family.  I find it a bit sad when others have shared comments with me, such as "I'd go crazy if I spent as much time with my husband as you do." Ummm... huh?  But I married my best friend; didn't you?  I'd rather spend time with my hubby than anyone else on the planet.  And I'll say I have some pretty awesome friends... but really, I love the experiences that we've shared together thus far.  .... And DEFINITELY look forward to sharing many, many more -- In the U.S. and abroad... (he has desires to sail around the world... hmmm... could be fun!!)

Back to that question -- or to paraphrase others before us in this Blog Crawl -- Were we Running away from something or to??  We think definitely "TO!"  We share the perspective of Heather Costaras in her post Running Away -- Are we?  (the blog right before us in the Crawl...)
"Granted, this is not everyone's cup of tea.  There are many people who are far happier with the boundaries and routine of the Settled Life.  Which is a good thing -- the world needs the settlers as much as it needs the pioneers.  There's room -- and place -- for both."  

And we have found, looking back, that we average about two years in a location before we're ready for new scenery.  Although we've found over the past couple of years, since our 2010 Adventure, that we're ready for new scenery MUCH sooner!  Sharing part of Heather's feelings again "...the season is over now... and ... we've overstayed our welcome.  Things we used to enjoy have now become mundane..." "...and all the comfort is making us distinctly uncomfortable."

Oh, and that reference to "Freedom" -- Yes, we have the freedom to choose how we want to live our life.  The freedom to choose what our "American Dream" looks like.  We choose to be 'nomadic' ... We choose to explore our country and our world.  We're thankful for our freedom.

Wow! It is,and has been, so nice to connect with other kindred spirits as we travel along enjoying the journey.  I'm so glad that we got the opportunity to post on this "Crawl" (except we've taken a bit longer than anticipated to get this up... but hey, it's up now!)

And the timing??? Impeccable!! As it happens, tomorrow morning we're off again...  We hope you follow along with us, and our friends (checking out the links throughout the "Blog Crawl") and ...

Enjoy the journey...



  1. Nice to hear a bit more of your story. Happy travels!

  2. Carolyn, I just read this blog post and I love the fact that you and Rich are best friends. Larry & I have been married soon to be 42 years and I STILL feel this way. He signed retirement papers on Monday (been taking vacation hours for 3 weeks) and every one kept asking was I tired of him yet. HECK NO! I love being with him. I pray you and Rich still feel the same when you share many years together :-)

  3. Thank you Rebeca and Ruth! Thanks for stopping by to enjoy the journey with us, hope to connect along the way!! :)