I had a pretty old-school childhood, for a child of the 80s and 90s. My parents were early retirees from another era and I was the unplanned surprise tagalong. Because of this, I’m think I’m fortunate to have grown up unlike many others in my age group. We lived out in the country and I knew how to make my own fun. My parents essentially let me roam around like a free-range chicken from the age of 10 on. Coincidentally, that is when I became friends with Caren, the co-author of this blog. For example, we legitimately used to play our own version of live-action Oregon Trail walking around my parents’ property.
I say all of this to preface that my parents treated life and travel the way you might expect for people who lived through extreme poverty and the Great Depression. Talk about “travel for real people.” Jetting off to Europe was not exactly on our agenda. It was a simpler time, kind of like what we’re experiencing now. We road tripped between North-Central Florida and our former home of New Jersey – trips where I fine-tuned my ability to sleep anywhere and everywhere on demand for hours on end. They bought vacation homes in the mountains, and between vacation homes, they got into RVing.
It started with the most adorable vintage Airstream trailer. They bought it and restored it, doing it all themselves. I remember Mom sewing curtains and upholstering the seats. We went on camping trips in the state. After that, there was an Avion – an Airstream cousin, then a very serious fifth-wheel RV, which we took on an epic trip up the east coast culminating in my sister’s wedding. We stayed at more state parks than I can remember. They were always the best value with the most beautiful scenery. Dad got me a beach cruiser during the trip and I would bike around, exploring all of the beachside campgrounds where we stayed. It was so great.
Whether you have a pop-up camper or a giant rockstar-style tour bus, RVing can be a blast and a safer way to travel in the era of COVID-19. I’m really excited, and a little jealous, of my friends who are discovering RVing for the first time. I’m also glad that one silver lining of the pandemic is that people are embracing a simpler life and appreciating quality time with friends and family in the great outdoors. Granted, this is because we have limited options right now, but for those who can make lemons into lemonade – and yes, that’s you, there are memories to be made.
Do you have any RV stories? Did you buy an RV as a result of the pandemic, or decide to start using one that has been sitting around? Are you thinking of getting one, and if so, what kind? Did your family go RVing when you were a kid?