How COVID Attacked Our 2022 RV Adventure

Today’s post was originally titled “Our 2022 RV Adventure” and outlined the plans for our annual RV “Reverse Snowbird” trip North.  I finalized the post a week ago and planned to publish it on August 4th, two days before our departure.

Then…COVID hit.

We enjoyed a nice dinner out with friends on Friday, July 29th, not knowing it would be the last time we’d leave our house for days.  As we were heading to bed, I told my wife I wasn’t feeling “right”.   I slept until Noon the following day, something I hadn’t done in over 30 years.  Both my wife and I tested positive for COVID within 24 hours of each other.  3 days of “flu-like” symptoms followed, but I’m bouncing back as I write these words on Tuesday and feel ~80% “back to normal.”

When my fever peaked at 103.2 degrees on Sunday, we decided to change our RV travel plans. COVID has taught us all the importance of remaining flexible, and today’s story is a perfect example of applying that reality in our life.  Since I had this post completed, I decided to publish it in its entirety as originally scheduled, adding a pre- and post- section to explain what we’ve done since COVID entered the scene.  It’s a good lesson of how, in spite of our perception that we can be effective planners, there are often things that disrupt our plans that are outside our control.

Life’s more enjoyable if we learn to adjust our swing to hit those curveballs and find a way to maintain a positive attitude in spite of ill-blowing winds. We’re thankful, for example, that the COVID hit while we were still at home instead of waiting until we were underway (nothing worse than being sick on the road). Following is the original post (with a few editorial comments added)…followed by how we’ve revised our 2022 RV Adventure in light of our unexpected rendezvous with COVID.


Our 2022 RV Adventure

In the six months before I retired in 2018, we bought the Ford F250 and 35′ Reflection 5th wheel RV shown above as part of our final retirement planning (See #14 in 20 Steps To Take In The Year Before Retirement). Every year since we’ve taken an extended RV trip.  

This year is no exception.  (or…so I thought…)

As you’re reading these words, we’re doing our final preparations for a 1,671-mile trip around the eastern United States (no, we’re laying low in home quarantine).  On Saturday, August 6th, we’re loading up the 4 dogs, releasing the brakes, and heading for North Carolina to visit friends before turning north.  (um, no…we’re not) I’ll share more details in today’s post.

RV travel has become an annual tradition, and it’s an element of retirement that we love.

Today, we’ll share the plan for our 2022 RV Adventure. (Plans subject to change…)

If you’re considering RV travel in retirement, today’s post is for you.

We're heading out on our 2022 RV Adventure! That's what I thought until we both came down with COVID Click To Tweet

rv adventure title

Our 2022 RV Adventure Is (NOT) Underway!

We’ve settled into an enjoyable routine in retirement.  During the majority of the year, we spend 3 weeks each month in our Appalachian Mountain cabin and 1 week in our Alabama condo visiting our daughter and granddaughter.  Occasionally we’ll throw in a Monday – Friday RV trip to various State Parks in the region.  It’s a great way to explore all that our region has to offer without having to deal with the weekend crowds.

The schedule suits us well.

Fall in Fort Mountain State Park
Fall 2020:  Mon-Fri camping in nearby Fort Mountain State Park, GA

Come August, however, we’ve made a habit of escaping Georiga’s brutal summer heat by doing a “Reverse Snowbird” trip somewhere North.  This year, we’re doing the same.  For those who may have missed it, here’s a summary of every major trip we’ve taken since retirement (note we started with a train journey, a longtime bucket list item). 

RV across the USA
2019 in The Colorado Rockies

Our Major Trips In Retirement:

In 48 hours, our 2022 RV Adventure will be underway (no it won’t, you presumptive fool).  For those of you who enjoy maps, here’s an overview of our (originally) planned route:

We’ve learned from experience what type of “flow” works for us on these trips, and this year will be no exception.  As I shared in How To RV In Retirement, we follow “The 330 Rule”, which says we never drive more than 330 miles in one day and attempt to stop by 3:30 pm at the latest.

We’ll take the first 2 days to drive the 380 miles to our friend’s house outside Durham, NC.  Then, we’ll turn north through Richmond to visit an uncle near Washington D.C., taking another two days to cover those 345 miles.  We’ll be staying two nights or more at any campground that follows a long driving day.

After visiting “Uncle Bill” near Washington D.C., we’ll turn West for some slower travel as we visit family in Ohio before turning south for a leisurely drive back home.

We’ll be staying in State Parks the entire journey, the best setting in which to give our dogs their much-needed walks after several hours in the crew cab of our F250 truck.  We’ve found State Parks suit our camping style perfectly, with something different to see and miles of trails to explore with the dogs.  

As a planner who has used spreadsheets for years, rest assured it’s all laid out (that doesn’t mean it’s going to happen, does it?),  We’ve found it’s more enjoyable for us to have everything booked in advance, allowing us to simply enjoy the trip without having to worry about finding “the next campground” (especially important since COVID and demographics have led to a splurge of RV travel and frequently sold-out campgrounds, especially on the weekends). Ironic that I mentioned COVID in the original post, right?

Here’s our plan:

Our 2022 RV Adventure Itinerary

RV Adventure itinerary spreadsheet

Hocking Hills Ohio
We’ll be returning to Hocking Hills – our favorite Ohio State Park

COVID Derails The Best of Plans

In spite of our best efforts to plan our lives, sometimes things happen that we never see coming.  After we tested positive for COVID, we decided to cancel the first half of our trip.  Fortunately, campgrounds tend to be flexible on their cancellation policies and we canceled everything through August 12 with minimal effort (and minor cancellation fees).

As we sit here today, we’re holding off on deciding whether to proceed with the Ohio leg of the journey to visit family.  I’m a day ahead of my wife on the COVID front, and today is the first day I’ve had the energy to get some writing done in my studio.  My wife is still struggling, but we’ve got a bit of time to finalize our plans. We’re hopeful she follows my trajectory and starts feeling more like herself by the time you’re reading these words.

I’m confident my wife and I will both fully recover.  The only question is the timing of that recovery, and whether we’ll gain back the energy required prior to the timeline required to “jump back in” to our previously scheduled itinerary (her brother had to request the week off work months in advance, so moving the visit back a few weeks isn’t an option). 

The good news:  We’re retired, we’re flexible, and we’re keeping a positive attitude about our current uncertainty.  No need to stress about things we can’t control, so we’ll just take it day by day until a decision is required.  We’ll either take an RV trip to Ohio, or we won’t.

In the broader perspective of life, that’s a reality we can handle.  IF things proceed as we’re currently thinking, we’ll likely reschedule our departure to August 12th, taking two days to get to Mosquito Lake State Park and resuming our trip without the big Eastern loop originally planned. 

As they say in the South, “The Good Lord willin’ and the creek don’t rise.”

Just goes to show that we never know when those creeks are going to flood.

Or…when COVID is going to rear its ugly head.

The best we can do is adjust our sails and enjoy the ride.  Life’s too short to live it any other way.

P.S.  If we do depart as planned, this will be the last post you see from me for a while. While I won’t be writing, you can follow our progress on The Retirement Manifesto page on Instagram and Facebook where I plan on posting pictures throughout our travels. 

Your Turn:  How has COVID caused you to revise your plans?  Did you keep a positive attitude about it, or did it throw you for a loop?  Let’s chat…

43 comments

  1. Vince and I got covid last summer pretty bad he ended up in the hospital for a full week. I recovered sooner. I think we had that nasty Delta variant but who knows. We are not retired but it did pull us out of work for an entire week for me and him about two weeks. I have known a lot of folks who had to either put off or rearrange travel plans because covid reared its ugly head. So glad you guys are doing better and hopefully you can get on with most of your very cool trip. Feel better!! Leah Landi. P.S. we are still cabin hunting or even thinking about doing a tiny house airbnb (if you know anyone with land for sale with hook ups (water, sewer, power) let me know – so hard to find!)

  2. We hope you both feel better soon! Thank you for sharing your experience of how you have adjusted your travel camping plans. We love to do state park camping as well and learning from your experience will help us if we run into this same situation with Covid. I love the spreadsheet and will “borrow” your example for planning a big cross country trip in the future. Be healthy and stay strong in your faith!

  3. Sorry to hear Fritz but hey, you’re retired, you can maintain ultimate flexibility. And being retired at home with covid still beats the stress of missing work with covid or going back to work when you’re still not feeling 100%.

    BTW there’s good mountain biking in Little Bennet in Gaithersburg. And nearby is Shaffer Farms, a much bigger trail network.

  4. I guess i’m wondering about the financial pros and cons of RVs. My wife and I tried renting a few and here and I have a few thoughts, but not hard numbers. 1) Financially, they seem like a poor choice. Assume a 40k trailer (you can easily spend more), plus tow vehicle that otherwise has no practical use at 40k, plus increased gas costs, plus camping fees ($40 + per night) and it feels like we could probably drive one fuel efficient vehicle, only have to own one vehicle, and then could rent really nice houses or hotel rooms. I get the dog angle (we have two) and there are other pros/cons to discuss (camping in a park, but an RV campground can feel like a parking lot and have a lot of mechanical noise etc cue debate here) but strictly from a numbers standpoint, I think you are looking at about $100 a day in increased operational costs, maintenance and camping fees. And then you have the purchase price(s) to allocate. What do your numbers tell you?

    1. Mark – you are correct. In most cases, RVs are not the cheapest way to go, but it’s a lifestyle choice. We paid $90k for ours and I know it’ll cost a lot more in the long run compared to driving a car and staying in hotels, but it’s a totally different experience. We love hearing the crickets at night, having hiking and biking available outside our door, cooking our meals on the grill, sitting by the campfire, meeting other campers

      1. I agree with you Jake. My wife and i bought a Sprinter and had it converted to the tune of about $90k but we love cycling and storing bikes inside the van was a must. we’ve had a blast finding places to boondock for free and in the last 3 years we’ve stayed maybe 3 nights in campgrounds but that’s our choice. We recently did a trip to Canada from Prescott, AZ and spent a total of one night in a hotel and because we didn’t really have to pay to camp it actually worked out cheaper for us given the Sprinter gets between 18-19 mpg. one night in Montana outside of Butte we were 20 yards from a creek and it didn’t cost a dime to camp. So many great apps that let you know where to camp for free. i know i can afford a good hotel but there’s something fun in being in the woods and just experiencing the outdoors.

    2. Our numbers say if we spend about 1000 more nights camping in our Sprinter it will be fully amortized. But that wasn’t entirely the point. We bought it to move across country – at the time many hotels were not yet reopened. We now use it for short and longer camping trips – next is a 3-4 week road trip to Maine and Niagara Falls, interspersed with several college football games and visits to granddaughter.

      When I first got a bike as a kid, it was freedom. The RV gives me a similar feeling. We have 3 or 4 more long trips planned from NC (Florida circuit, Big Bend, another run up the Rockies, Northwest, and Upper Peninsula) before we sell it and just use the Subaru and Marriott. If it is just numbers, don’t do it.

      1. Now that is an easy explanation to understand! There are very few things in life that can give us the same feeling as a first bike! If RV’ing does that for you, totally worth it.

  5. Hope you both are recovering well and so sorry you got hit with COVID. Speaking as a physician I would suggest that since you are a planner, as I am, you take full advantage of preventive and treatment strategies for any illness that might hit while traveling. In truth that means seeing your doc and making sure you are up to date on all recommended vaccinations for your age and situations. Simple things like tetanus boosters get forgotten and that disease can be quite serious. Also pneumonia vaccines are quite effective as well as shingles shots for those of us at a certain age. Your health care professionals are there to help and advise, so it’s a good idea to add that to planning for an extended trip. Here’s to a healthy retirement.

  6. Hope you are much better by now. Your Ohio leg of the trip is near where we live. You will love Hocking Hills. The only thing Covid did to disrupt our family was postponing some birthday dinners in July. Our daughter’s family had more disruptions since they have littles and couldn’t send them to daycare for awhile. We all got through it.

  7. Sorry you got the bug and glad you’re feeling better. And thanks for sharing your story. We have a Class C and starting taking month-long trips in the fall after retirement. This year we’re heading to New England (mostly the Coast of Maine). We also feel most comfortable having reservations for our entire trip. It’s a lot more work up front but it makes for a more relaxing journey. And I have a spreadsheet that looks very similar to yours! Wishing you a quick recovery and then safe travels!

    1. Enjoy our coast of Maine! Coming back fro Lubec and Quoddy lighthouse at the eastern boarder with Canada. Our first trip with our ClassB camper.

  8. Picked up COVID 3 weeks prior to my retirement on 30 July. Those of you that know the Army, out processing is a big deal. My wife tested positive a week after me. This was even worse for her as she is a teacher and the last year she was having with her 4th grade class. She missed the end of year play and all the small get togethers, so mentally it hit her pretty hard. After 37 years in and with the military we were able to adjust, but just bad timing. Attitude stayed positive throughout the entire lockdown. Thankful that you all didn’t have major issues, we were also fortunate. Going into my first week of retirement and looking forward to the downtime and home/European travel projects planned.

  9. Hi Fritz, Sorry the COVID happened to you and your wife. My wife is just getting over it as well.

    I started my official retirement on July 5th, so I am still getting up to speed on my new “life of leisure” schedule. I have enjoyed all your posts and I can honestly say that you have contributed to the successful planning of what I believe will be a great retirement.

    Safe travels.

  10. Hey Fritz,

    I hope you and your wife are on the mend and feeling better! Flexibility is the key for sure. Safe travels!

  11. Fritz, help me understand the RV gig. You spend $150K on kit, which depreciates like crazy. You load and pack all that stuff up, get on the road with 10 tons of stuff with irrational other drivers that statistically exposes you to an accident, flat, breakdown, road rage. Spend all day driving to a shady spot with better weather, unhitch, setup, take a walk to stretch your and the dog’s legs, spend a few days sittling in lawn chairs. Hitch back up, empty the sewer system, and repeat for a month, then get home, unpack the 10 tons of stuff and clean it all. I’m kidding of course, but what am I missing?

    1. I’m not Fritz, but I’m a lifelong camper. As we approach retirement next year, we’ve run the numbers about RV travel (we are still tent campers) it’s a complicated formula/calculation. I can’t imagine my early retirement years without camping but I also know that a trip like Fritz’s in a tent would be miserable.

      We still haven’t figured it out (other than we know we don’t want a huge rig) but we still know that when you stay in state parks, national parks, your experience is vastly different than if you stay in a nearby hotel/cabin/etc. We have some international travel (and a knee replacement) on the sched for 2023, but in 2024 we’ll probably want to take off on a road trip so still thinking about what that will look like.

      With a rig Fritz’s size, I doubt there’s much packing/unpacking as they are already set up with what they need in the rig. Throw in food and clothes and you’re probably ready to roll. With their dogs, I can’t imagine a better way to travel for those periods of time. Expensive, absolutely, but incomparable for what they want to do.

  12. Fritz,

    Sorry to hear about this.

    (My wife tested positive the day before we were leaving for a two week vacation in July, as did our youngest daughter in DC, and then last week our eldest daughter in Boston a day before she was about ti traveling to Spain .)

    Best wishes on continuing to bounce back strong!

    Joe

  13. Fritz,
    My husband and I got Covid on a trip to Pagosa Springs this May to visit my brother and his family. Luckily we were staying in an Airbnb and even though we spent the 2 days with them before our symptoms started, they didn’t get it. It was the end of our visit though and so I was devastated as we don’t see them much as we live in NC. Since we were in beautiful CO we did day driving trips until my husband got pretty sick – then we hid out in the Airbnb until we recovered and could fly home. It was a pretty expensive trip and I was devastated we only got to spend a few days with my family instead of a week as planned! My Covid depression lasted a few weeks after recovery and it still makes me sad to think about it. Hope your recovery is as quick as mine ( 4 days for me, 7 for my husband). If you ever end back in Durham to see your friends, let us know! Would love to buy you a beer and meet in person 😃
    Lori

  14. I have an RV/horse trailer combo commonly known as a “Living Quarters” horse trailer. Have only done local trips within 2 hours of home but want to go farther as soon as I am free of current responsibilities.

    Have the truck too, which does double duty hauling feed and hay and whatever other large things I need.

    It’s been many years since I have done a road trip, so this should be interesting. For me the allure of RV camping is that I can take a horse or two with me, and trail ride at the various parks and have all the creature comforts in the camper. It’s nice to escape to the woods.

    Covid mainly messed me up with regards to visiting my elderly parents and I have deep regret not seeing more of my mother before she passed away. I was so afraid of infecting her so I avoided visiting. Thus far I have escaped infection and suspect the vaccinations combined with living alone in the country have helped.

  15. We bought a camper (bumper pull) several years ago and just upgraded the tow vehicle to 2022 Toyota Tundra. We are fortunate to have a couple of really good US Corp of Engineers parks nearby. I’m still working, but my wife is retired. We try once a month to hit the campground (Thurs PM to Sun AM). We really love the lifestyle and get to spend extra quality time with the grandkids.

    But. Seriously? You actually stay at a campground named for the dreaded Mosquito?!?!? Surely the aggressive, thirsty, and annoying critters have been eradicated and this is a monument to the Dale Gribbles of the world.

    Hope you get on the road soon!

  16. So glad that you’re feeling better. COVID is a beast. I’ve had it twice and the 2nd time was very mild, thankfully. My husband and I are a bit behind you. We will be empty nesters in 2 weeks as our youngest (twins) head to college and then will be cutting back working in the next few years. My husband and I have been working through your book and planning and preparing. I love the reverse snowbird idea. We live in the Nashville area and it’s pretty hot where we are as well.

  17. Hey Fritz, sorry to hear you guys got covid, but glad you are on the mend. And I agree, much better to get it over with before you leave on your trip than dealing with it on the road.

    I totally get the RV thing. We love our RV trips, usually twice a year, spring and fall for about 6 weeks at a time. We have traveled through every state more than once and always find new things to do and see, we just love the camping experience. And, ad you pointed out, RV trips never go as planned, we see that as part of the adventure. Some of your readers have pointed out the financial aspects of RVing, yup, it’s expensive. But, retirement is about enjoying your life with fulfilling experiences that you really enjoy doing. We are all running out of time. My 2 cents is make the most of the time you have left.

  18. We are in the market for a used PU/5th wheel combo. Most of the 2-4 year old pickups are actually selling above their original MSRP. Crazy market. I’m figuring that will change with the slowing economy and gas prices. We’ll see.

  19. Reading with total empathy, and respect as usual upon absorbing your posts. And responding from the isle of Skye, Scotland. Our super-planned, COVID-delayed-from-2020, trip with 24 dear friends was underway (all testing daily) starting in Ireland, when several, including first me, then my husband, got symptoms then tested positive. In total 12 caught it mid-trip and had to wait and adjust. After the group dispersed, my husband and I had to cancel our follow-on trip to our heart/soul Norway, as we couldn’t make the first leg. We chose to wait it out in Dublin, and managed to improve and then we made “lemonade”: by grabbing a same-day flight to Galway and driving 4 hours to another wild, glorious eye filling world.
    We learned a lot and mainly to stay positive (in attitude), nimble, plan an emergency budget in, and make our own brand of lemonade in this unpredictable environment.

  20. Thanks for sharing Fritz. I hope you both get and stay healthy.
    My challenge is my wife is being super cautious. I convinced her to travel to a family wedding in Mid-Sept and I’m working on her to travel to Florida in November. The wedding is a road trip but Florida will require flying, which is the dilemma. It’s been a long 2.5 years.

  21. Hey Fritz,
    Scott and their family are now in Pittsburgh. Say hello on your way through…
    Hope yo are feeling better now.
    Bill

  22. Sorry that you folks got sick. Covid is now and will be a normal thing for everyone now. We just have to make changes when things happen. We are currently in Galveston and on our way to Florida by Oct.

    Dave

  23. After looking at RV’s for more than 2 years before retirement in 2020, my wife made it crystal clear, no way no how. So all you RV’s out there, bless your heart :). There are RV’s and there are no way folks. No need to debate or argue. And no way to justify the cost, just accept it as a lifestyle, like most decisions.
    So I planned a solo tent camping trip to Mt Mitchell (with my dog), and Covid hit me the first day, lucky I was 2 hrs from home. This week is the first week I’ve had any energy to do anything. But taste and smell came back!!!
    Fitz, I love the 330 rule. I have been applying it in a different context, I stop all chores or anything not fun at 3. Made life great!!

    love your posts, and (most) of the comments, come on folks stop bragging about your whatever and just live your best life.
    cheers,
    Lester

  24. My husband as yet is not retired but he came down with Covid on his 65th Birthday. He had put himself at risk as he works at CVS as a pharmacist and is in contact with lots of people, sick and asymptomatic. He promptly gave Covid to me. Crazy thing was I had just picked up my dad from a Rehab facility and visited my elderly Aunt at the same facility. So i was worried that I inadvertently infected them. They did not catch Covid, miraculously.

  25. Glad you are getting through Covid! It definitely derailed my retirement plans as my husband (and his brother) both passed away from it back in 2020. I’m moving forward with our dreams though and bought a house in Venice, Florida near my brother last year. I still work in my real estate career in Colorado Springs but plan to spend more and more time in Florida in the winters. The only thing I’ve really changed about the plans we had is I won’t be buying a sailboat which was Pete’s dream (he grew up sailing on the Bristol channel in England) but I did do a wonderful sailing course off Captiva Island with one of my sons in May of this year. Really enjoy your blog and following your adventures!

  26. Fritz,

    I am struggling with the irony of your superb blog, which is based in so much well researched information, compared with your notion that:

    “Or…when COVID is going to rear its ugly head. The best we can do is adjust our sails and enjoy the ride. Life’s too short to live it any other way.”

    I am having trouble with that sentiment since as a doctor I know a lot of people were misinformed about COVID, and as a result they have given up or given in to this notion that its going to happen no matter what they do, and that will have to be OK. Its not. If you took that position about preparing for retirement, few of your readers would ever get there.

    My COVID experience is more personal, as during the pandemic my son was struck with a rare kidney disorder and required dialysis, followed by a transplant from his sister. He has no immune system. We had to take precautions with great seriousness, and adjust our lives, since for us COVID was not just a flu or a bad cold or even something that might lead to going to the hospital. COVID was a potential killer in my family and we did all we could to get prevention and treatment information that was reliable and evidence based. Happily for us, that has worked and most of our family (and in particular my son) has not gotten COVID. Our lives have continued and we continue to travel. My family hold regular jobs and have school aged kids that followed advice, got vaccinated and have not gotten infected. Our one exposure that led to a positive test was followed up with prompt oral antiviral treatment and resolved in about 5 days with no other cases. This should tell us something about what can be achieved.

    As a physician I know that if our population took commonsense precautions seriously we could severely limit or even eliminate this virus, like we have with so many others; but continued misinformation and fatigue will ensure a long run for COVID. We are still losing 400 plus Americans every single day. As an American, it is shameful that we can sit back and ignore this ongoing loss of life and impact to so many families. I wonder if we could imagine how these deaths impacted their retirement travel plans, and if they would advise the rest of us to “adjust our sails and enjoy the ride”. I imagine not.

    I hope you can understand the spirit of my response and understand that I respect your willingness to really examine issues with great care. And I will continue to read and learn from you.

    All the best for a complete recovery

    QH

  27. Get well soon you two!

    Back in June, my wife and I were on a 12-night UK / France cruise (both tested negative to get on the ship). My wife woke up on the last morning with a bad headache and fever (tested positive). Went to our Paris hotel as planned for the next five days thinking “there are worse places to be recovering from Covid than looking out your window at the Eiffel Tower!” She wound up having no more symptoms after day one and I never got it at all. Returned to the U.S. two weeks after they quit requiring tests. We were really lucky! Still want to see the Palace at Versailles, so will have to return later.

  28. I agree with you Jake. My wife and i bought a Sprinter and had it converted to the tune of about $90k but we love cycling and storing bikes inside the van was a must. we’ve had a blast finding places to boondock for free and in the last 3 years we’ve stayed maybe 3 nights in campgrounds but that’s our choice. We recently did a trip to Canada from Prescott, AZ and spent a total of one night in a hotel and because we didn’t really have to pay to camp it actually worked out cheaper for us given the Sprinter gets between 18-19 mpg. one night in Montana outside of Butte we were 20 yards from a creek and it didn’t cost a dime to camp. So many great apps that let you know where to camp for free. i know i can afford a good hotel but there’s something fun in being in the woods and just experiencing the outdoors.

  29. In 2020 I planned a trip to Italy for my 60th birthday that included an outdoor concert with Andrea Bocelli. Covid cancelled that trip with a worldwide shut down. The concert was rescheduled twice with September 2022 as the final date. My sister and I rescheduled the trip with refundable airfare and hotel reservations based on the contingency of our father’s health. We will be cancelling our reservations next week to care for our father. Italy will still be there when we are able to enjoy guilt free.

  30. After 18 months of surrendering to Covid-19, we decided to take the shots and travelled internationally again in August of 2021.

    Looking back, it was a risky decision. At the same time, it was the best decision we have made since 2014, the year we ascended
    the FIRE Himalaya and decided to cut the 9 to 5 CHAIN.

    Covid-19 is nothing more than a challenge, we as a species, must work together to move forward.

    You and I must execute our parts of the sum, by having the courage to live and make personal decision that matches with our potentials.

  31. Thank you for sharing, Fritz. As usual, your blogs are filled with positivity, humility, and great ideas (e.g. 330 rule). The reader’s responses are also helpful and interesting. While camping is not on our list, visits to state parks is one of our retirement dreams. I’ll need to go back and read about your other major trips for inspiration. Best wishes on a healthy and fun tour of the north east!

  32. My DW and I had very nice tickets to Hamilton in STL, purchased many months earlier. About 4 day’s prior my wife tested positive for Covid and then I did two days later. Sadly had to sell the tickets for 50% of our cost…but at least lucky to have a buyer the day of the performance.

  33. We planned a pilgrimage to Jordan, Israel and Oberammergau for May 2020. Paid first deposit in Dec 2018. Final payment 20 days before trip was postponed to 2022. Negative tests in US, Jordan, upon entry to Israel and before departure to Germany. Had to test before return to US and wife tested positive but with no symptoms other than a bit of a head cold. Three extra days in Munich was not the worst, but it was stressful testing every day – waiting to see if I would also test positive and restart the clock. Fortunately, the US dropped the test to return (but only if flying in) requirement. Glad you are doing well. We’ll stay in the RV and in the US for the next couple of years.

  34. Dear Fritz,
    I hope that by now you and your wife have fully recovered!!!
    Strangely enough, considering the large number of friends and relatives with Covid, I have not experienced the virus personally. My cousin and her husband unfortunately had Long Covid effects (during the second wave) , while our friends had with a sort of flu- like symptoms. I have to admit that at the beginning, I was really scared about it and then I started to realize that we have to “cohabit “with it, so I am a bit more relaxed (when I travel I am wearing the FFP3 mask 😉)
    Thank you for your interesting article!!

  35. Fritz,
    I’m late reading this post as we’ve been on a short RV excursion ourselves, and I haven’t been reading as much this week. Long time reader here (minimal poster). Sorry to hear about the COVID illness canceling the first half of your Northeast RV trip. I hope you guys are feeling much better and are now on the road again. I noticed in your itinerary that you were planning to stay at Bullocksville Campground on Kerr Lake in Manson, NC. We happen to be staying at North Bend Park on Kerr Lake this week. Sorry you missed this leg of your trip. Kerr Lake is absolutely beautiful. Just an FYI, if you ever re-plan this leg of your trip, instead of staying at Bullocksville, try North Bend Park (Hint: you would love site #222 or #223 on the “D” loop). This park is just 20 minutes North of your planned stay in Bullocksville and much nicer. It’s just barely over the Virginia border and your 35’ Reflection would fit nicely in either of the above waterfront sites (we are in #222 this week with our 38’ Sprinter Limited pulled with an F250 with plenty of room for additional cars/trucks, if necessary). These sites have their own little beach and huge waterfront views just 30’ from our camper door. You can even anchor a boat in front of either site. (You’ll thank me later!) Not to downplay Bullocksville, it’s nice, but North Bend Park is a hidden gem! Wish you had made it, and we could’ve connected this week to compare FIRE notes (5 years FIRE’d!!!).

    Hint#2: There’s also a great craft brewery 15 minutes from North Bend called Buggs Island Brewery (also right on the water). Great place with wonderful views of the water. Next time you come through, PM me and I’ll come down for the day and I’ll buy the beer! Feel better soon!

  36. Hope you are both feeling better and your RV adventure will soon be back on track. RV travel is a big part of our planned retirement. We purchased a motorhome in 2019 and planned our first month long trip for summer 2020 — yep, what turned out to be the height of COVID. We debated about going, but ultimately decided that traveling in the RV was likely our safest option. We had our home with us and were able to minimize dining out and interaction with others so we stayed safe. After that trip and uncovering some issues with the motorhome we decided to trade it for a different model the end of 2020. Again, we were fortunate and found one we love before all the RV price craziness really took off. In 2021 we traveled for 3 months and this year we are on a 4 month trip. So far we have managed to avoid contracting COVID by being reasonably cautious and getting our shots and boosters. This week we are in Kentucky Bourbon Country and I was concerned enough to take a test which fortunately was negative. I am pretty allergic to molds and yesterday learned about the whiskey mold here in this area which I think explains my symptoms. We are not retired yet, but are enjoying practicing on these trips. My husband was able to negotiate a 4 month leave of absence from work each year until he retires. That keeps us in health insurance and I started my own real estate brokerage last year so that I could transition out of day to day real estate dealings and be free to travel so long as I have phone and internet. Still figuring out how to balance those things, but love the opportunity to travel in the RV! Safe travels!

  37. I would say I did let the Covid pandemic delay doing something with my dad. I wanted to take my dad on a trip to Texas to see relatives but Covid made me delay such a trip to visit family.
    Unfortunately, the delay was too long. I was able to travel with my father with the rest of my siblings to Myrtle Beach in January to the Ruritan convention. My father like your father passed away in February.

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