Correction: In my blog about Maine I incorrectly stated that REI sponsored the buses around Mt. Desert Island and the National Park. It is L. L. Bean. Sorry and thanks to Jon D. for pointing that out. Cheers!
We’ve seen many things along the way over the first 3 months of our RV Adventure. We’ve driven almost 5,000 miles, crossed through 13 states, and seen mountains, forests, rivers, islands, lakes, monuments, museums, parks, campgrounds, major cities and little villages. This is an amazing country, and we’ve only started to cover the length and breadth of the USA over this first summer of our journey.
What has made the most prized memories of our trip to date? Easily that’s been the people we’ve spent time with. So far we have visited with 4 of my 5 siblings and their families along with both of Carrie’s sons and their beautiful wives. We saw two of my nephews and their families, other cousins, and some extended family as well. Visiting family was our focus for this first trip, and shaped the route for us from southern Florida through northern Virginia. Fortunately for us most of our families are concentrated in the eastern states. My oldest sister and her youngest son are out west and we’ll catch up with them when we head that way.
I haven’t seen most of my brothers and sisters since we started sailing the Atlantic and Caribbean, and some much longer than that. But recently our “cruising ground” has been the land where they all live, and the opportunity to visit with family made this shakedown trip for new RV’ers very rewarding.
We have also been very fortunate along the way to work in side-visits to see several good friends in between the family stops. We saw some friends before leaving Florida, and Carrie’s old friends from her early sailing days now live in eastern Ohio, so we rendezvoused with them along our route. Our good friends who rescued us in Panama were visiting their family in Massachusetts, and another couple was visiting family in New Hampshire, so we made stops along the way to (and from) Maine to spend a few days with each of them. Unfortunately there were one or two others that we corresponded with but couldn’t fit in due to timing and distance challenges.
Interestingly the number of new friends we’ve made along the way has been rather small. The RVing community is quite different from the Cruising community, but I’ll leave additional thoughts on that for a different post.
We did meet a wonderful couple in Front Royal, VA and then saw them again outside of Boston. He is a retired Air Force Senior Master Sergeant (E-8) with almost 30 years of service, mostly in Germany, and his wife is a lovely French gal he met while overseas. They have been RVing full time for several years now and we hit it off right away. We got together with them along with Carrie’s son Nathan and his wife Julie. With a bottle of wine and his guitar we sang country songs through several hours on a Sunday afternoon. Good fun.
We knew they were going to be in the Boston area at Hanscom AFB but didn’t know if we’d see them, but when we pulled in and set up camp, they were in the space right behind us. Hanging out with them was again good fun and we learned a great deal about RVing in general, using military RV facilities, and some other good tips.
Suffice it to say that the first leg of our RVing has been very “family-centric”, but we also enjoyed visiting friends along the way, and still took in a number of natural wonders along with a great Bluegrass Festival. I expect that the next leg(s) of our journeys will be more about the places we visit, although seeing friends and family along the way still holds promise for a lot of enjoyment. We’ll see.