It has been 10 months since we sold it all, loaded up our Heartland Bighorn, and hit the open road. We started out on May 31, 2015 with a plan to see things that many people do not have the opportunity to see. We wanted to spend quality time in national parks, beautiful locations, and unique landscapes. Although we still have many items on our bucket list, we are amazed at what we have been able to do and see.
Sadly, our full-time adventure will be over on Friday, as we go sign the lease for our new apartment. Sherry likes working in the school district, and we have decided to rent for a year to make sure we truly love living in southwest Florida. We have nothing but respect for our fellow travelers who are full-time on the road, some for years. Our decision to resettle has to do with the nature of teaching. It would be difficult to travel and teach, and we have to admit that we are craving the consistency that four solid walls bring, and the security of a job with benefits and retirement for Sherry. (If you haven’t kept up with us from the beginning, read our “about us” to understand why we started this adventure in the first place). We aren’t for certain that southwest Florida is our permanent new home, but we always said this was an adventure about taking chances and saying ‘yes’ to opportunity. Actually, the biggest take away from this adventure for us has been that we have to let life happen to us. We have so many examples from this adventure that explains this idea. We took a workamping job in Montana on a whim, and it was the best thing we did on this adventure! We highly recommend Northwest Montana and Glacier National Park. If Florida doesn’t work out, Montana is calling us back. We came to this area of Florida in the same way. We said yes to an opportunity, and the doors just kept opening. As soon as we got here, Sherry went to the education job fair and was offered a full-time job on the spot. Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed, so we figure we should make the most of whatever comes our way. We have talked a lot recently that we cannot forget the lessons we have learned on this journey.
1. Experiences NOT things: you can buy many things in life, but the memories you make by DOING will always be more important than the stuff you buy.
2. Spending time together makes you a better couple: we have said this MANY times – people always ask if we are tired of each other yet. We think that the time that we’ve spent traveling and being together 24/7 has made us a better couple, not worse.
3. Say yes: we already went over this, but it is a good lesson. We would ask each other if we wanted to go somewhere, do something, see something, and we would always say ‘yes’. There’s a lot of life out there. Go experience it! Even if it is just in your own backyard.
We were talking the other day that we have been in Florida for a few months, but we haven’t gotten out to explore enough. Work and doing other things have taken our time away from what we have said should be more important – experiences. So, as we clean out the RV, store it, and move into a new home, we are going to remember what we have learned by living full-time in an RV. But don’t worry, the adventure isn’t completely over. Being a teacher, Sherry has the advantage of having weeks at a time off in the summer and for various breaks throughout the year. We will be heading to the Keys this summer, and on Sherry’s bucket list is the Dry Tortugas National Park off of Key West. We will continue to blog and share our experiences with our readers. We hope to get our photography business booming here in Fort Myers, so we will definitely continue blogging about that. Take care, fellow adventurers! Carpe Diem and all that!
-Sean and Sherry