This is the parallel story to my nightmare RV vacation. These are the highlights and insights of this unforgettable experience.
- A New Appreciation for Warranties. I like doing things “on the cheap”, using handymen quite often to get me fixed up. But I knew I couldn’t take any chances with the A/C. I forked out the extra cash to insure my investment, knowing it could be disastrous if something went wrong in these extreme temperatures while on the road. Three air compressors later, I’m relieved I never had to pay a dime for additional parts and labor.
- I’m Capable of Full-Time Travel Again. It’s been a long, tough road since my hospital stay in Phoenix a few years ago — but I’ve recovered enough financially that I feel comfortable handling tough situations on the road — and my new job situation is also going to allow this to happen. It’s a liberating feeling knowing I have the ability to pursue the lifestyle I love again!
- Rental Cars. It had been several years since I’d rented a car. Initially, I’d resented having to fork out the cash, but actually ended up embracing the whole thing as part of the vacation experience. It was particularly nice catching up with the modern age for a moment and enjoying a digital readout on the dashboard. I also learned that certain rental companies will actually pick you up!
- Getting Stranded in Tehachapi was Kinda’ Cool. Despite the logistical challenges, I was thankful I got stranded on top of a mountain. While every valley below was experiencing 105-plus temperatures, I was enjoying the low-90’s with a nice, constant breeze. Additionally, the wildlife was extraordinary. I fell in love with the area! Mountain Valley RV Park is definitely worth more than a one-night stay. I also discovered it was a great place for storage (they $1 per foot every month. 27 ft = $27).
- The Fearless Little White Poodle. I’d warned several one-nighters in Tehachapi to keep a close eye on their pets. I’d never seen so many coyotes — especially in broad daylight. One day I was having a conversation with a camper as we observed two coyotes not 20 yards away. One was quite large. All-of-a-sudden a little white poodle came out of nowhere and made a bee-line towards them! All we could do was scream for the owner as the white flash streaked into the meadow with no fear. Did the coyotes eat the little guy? No! They ran for the hills! The little pooch easily chased them a half-mile.
Turtle Beach Fish Camp
- I May Always be Happy Traveling Alone. In Turtle Beach I experienced front end problems, a leaky holding tank, and a nearly-flat tire — all in a 24-hour period. But even still I was able to enjoy the uniqueness and beauty of the campground. This one features a river that wraps around the camp like a horseshoe. You might call it a “swimmin’ hole” — a very playful atmosphere for kids and adults alike. THIS is the memory I’ll have with me years later and, because it’s not a memory that I share with a girlfriend — it’s my own memory to keep forever.
- A New Traveling Poker Gameplan. My two-week stay in Nicolaus, California was specifically designed to spend the week trying to qualify for a $1600 buy-in Ante Up World Championship event. On my fifth and final attempt, I qualified! This, while keeping afloat with my cash game play and breaking even for the week. With a $125,000 first place up for grabs, I survived 15+ levels and came within a couple hours of making the money — around $3000 for the first payouts. I am very confident I can play these “Mid-Major” tournaments into some very serious cash. I also have the oportunity to deal some of these events when I have to. A circuit is developing…