Saturday, March 8, 2014

Retirement: Travel Now (with Bob Lowry) and Then (with me)

You really must connect with Bob Lowry on his blog, Satisfying Retirement.  He and his wife, Betty, retired when they were young but they are just now on the cusp of beginning to live "the life". They have purchased an RV and plan to take an extended trip one day soon. Every time I read his blog I can only think how things have changed since we began our adventure over 16 years ago. Traveling is only one of the life changing choices for a new retiree but I think it is one of the most important. It broadens a person's horizons in so many ways. And that is what Betty and Bob are about to do.

I thought it would be fun to compare what he is talking about being able to do and what we did when we traveled across the United States in our little Winnebago Class C. Our lives back then were very much the same as the Lowrys today. Grandchildren, children and an aging parent are always on their mind and of course cost is a big factor in deciding where to go and what to do.

When we began our journey, my mother was in a nursing home. I bought our first ever cell phone and spend over $600 tracking her care while we were on the road. We all know the cost of keeping in contact has been reduced to almost nothing compared to what we spent back when we began RV travel.

Now Bob and Betty can visit on Skype and see their grandchildren's faces. Email or Facebook can be used to communicate. Bob will be blogging as he goes too. I sent postcards and drew pictures of oil well pumps and rockets going into space. (We saw John Glenn's second blast off into space that trip).

Betty is a photographer and she can edit pictures using their wonderful laptop computer. They can post those pictures wherever they want online. I took many pictures and my son bought us a scrapbook as a going away present.  I can remember taking the film to the drugstore to have it developed and I built the scrapbook as we went along.

A map has been purchased by the Lowrys for the grandchildren so they had check on their grandparent's progress. I wish I had thought to do that. Because they can remain so connected while they are gone, children and grandchildren will see them in a totally different light after they return home.

We traveled in this motor home for many Mexico,
Texas gulf coast and all over California, Oregon and Washington.

This was parked down the street from us in a
Las Vegas trailer park. This park no long exists.
We were parked very near this
trailer in Las Vegas.
A GPS makes it very easy to find your way around. Bob will use one of those I know. We had a map! 

RV parks are readily available now and are rated by Good Sam so you do know what you are in for when you travel. Our RV parks were generally by the railroad tracks and on many occasions we stayed in trailer parks that were very sketchy...nice people but not nice facilities. The ratings were also not always as up to date as we would have liked. I remember getting lost on the gulf coast trying to find a 10-10-10 park and when we did find it, the Good Sam rating had gone away when the owners sold.

Boomers like Bob and Betty are so visible now. I see them in our RV resort in increasing numbers all the time. Because of the boomer phenomena, traveling for the Lowrys will be not only an adventure it will also be a way of connecting with people that are their own age. I know they will meet so many people that they will never forget. I almost wish we could do it all again!


All of Satisfying Retirements RV labeled posts can be found here.
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  1. Interesting comparison between then and now! And "then" wasn't all that long ago.

  2. What a pleasant surprise to see this post today. I normally avoid the computer on Sundays, but you have given me a great reason to break my "fast." Thank you for this article and your friendship.

  3. Bob,
    I am having such a good time reliving out early retirement years with you and Betty. Sometimes i wish we had a small RV so we could do some more traveling without any ties. It was so much fun.

  4. We are meeting Mike and Tamara Reddy for a few days near the end of April at a state park just north of Tucson. They are beginning their long spring trip and it just so happens their first stop is close enough for us to pack up the RV and join them!

    RVing makes friends.


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