And so it begins…

PE-149 Cape Canavaral State Park April 2005_2

You can consider the photo above our “before” photo, that is, the photo taken before we spend nine (or more?) months living in our Airstream.  As we write this, the movers are packing up all our stuff to go into storage until our house in Asheville, NC is completed–the latest estimate is late March or April of next year.  After the closing on our Gainesville, FL  house this Thursday we officially will be homeless, and living in our Airstream down by the river, lake, mountain, beach, or possibly in your driveway.  Actually, we know exactly where we will be from June 21, 2013 through March 15, 2014, so if you haven’t  heard from us already you should be safe.

In our travels we will head north this summer, arriving in Maine by late July.   We’ll then slowly work our way south, spending most of the fall in Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina.  After Christmas, we will join the snowbirds in Florida for the rest of the winter, staying in the Florida Keys in early March of next year.  If all goes as planned, we will then head north to Asheville to move into our new house.

We will make a total of 42 stops along the way and here’s a summary of our itinerary from Friday through the end of July which will get us to Maine:

  • Island on Lake Murray in South Carolina
  • New River in North Carolina
  • Park near Richmond, Virginia
  • Shenandoah River in Virginia
  • Bald Eagle Mountain in Pennsylvania
  • Watkins Glen in New York
  • Cayuga Lake in New York
  • Winhall Brook in Vermont
  • Friends’ driveway in Maine

We started to list our entire trip itinerary in this blog but, when we realized there were 42 stops, we started to feel both apprehensive and exhausted.  After becoming empty nesters, we have been camping regularly for the last six years, first in a pop-up trailer and then in our Airstream.  However, our longest trip to date has been about two weeks, so 9+ months represents uncharted territory.  Ed feels this will be a good test of our marriage–if we survive 9 months in a 7′- 7″ by 25′ tin can, we should be good to go for our future life together in Asheville.

We actually have a precedent for using camping to confirm our relationship.  Before we were married, we went camping together in a two-person tent to Williamsburg, VA and Nags Head, NC.  We could write an entire blog on that trip but, to summarize, Patty sprained her ankle in the ocean, Ed came down with strep throat and the vacation was cut short.  Below are the before and after photos for that trip.


The good news is that our first camping trip did not destroy our relationship.  The bad news is that it lasted less than a week as compared to our currently planned 9+ month trip.  So…what will happen this time?  Stay tuned…  Our goal is to write a new blog once a week but that’s only a goal.  We will be camping in some remote areas much of the trip so we’re assuming our internet access will be limited.

Have a great summer!

P.S. – Ed really wanted to do this trip just so he could tell people “we’re livin’ in a trailer down by the river”, a reference to Chris Farley’s famous SNL character, Matt Foley, motivational speaker, who was “livin’ in a van down by the river”.  If you haven’t seen it or would like to see it again, here’s a link:

14 thoughts on “And so it begins…

  1. Dear Patty and Ed,
    This is a first for me, as I am not a “blogger”. Congrats on beginning yet another exciting phase in the “life with the Prestemons.” Promise us that if you do venture to the southernmost point of the US you will let us know. It has been years….BTW we have a contract on our house and should know if all is well within in next 2 weeks. We are not sure where we are moving, but of course will not be venturing as far as you as we are still among the working class. Hope to see you at some point on your travels.


  2. I am so excited for you both in this new adventure and I look forward to reading all about it. And, yes, I remember that other trip and REALLY hope that this one goes better 🙂

  3. I am certain you will both survive the trip, though hopefully with just enough trauma to keep the blog hysterical. I am excited to hear all about your adventures, but even more excited to visit you in your new home in Asheville next year. I will start tidying up the house now just in case you need to make an emergency visit while you are in Florida. I love you both and wish you luck!

  4. What a fantastic adventure! I am anxious to hear how everything goes for you. You two are an inspiration! If you decide to make a detour and follow in the footsteps of Lewis and Clark, you are always welcome to visit us here in Omaha.

    • We will not be able to follow Lewis & Clark this time but that’s a great idea for a future trip. Ed read “Undaunted Courage” a few years ago and has wanted to retrace their trip ever since.

  5. Your blogs will be fun to read if this entry is any indication! The before and after pics of your first camping trip cracked me up! I’m envious of your footloose condition. I hope you have great times. Come back and see us when you are in FL again. We have a big driveway!!!
    Linda & Dave

  6. What a great adventure you guys are starting on! Airstreams are built to last, just like you two :). Have fun and we’ll enjoy reading about your escapades. Hugs! Ginger & Don

  7. You are going to have so much fun and so many “experiences”. “Experiences” might not always be good but you can tell your grandkids about them! David and I will be reading.
    We are immensely enjoying Newfoundland and in less than a week we will enter Labrador, the last frontier…ha!
    Donna, Hawthorne High School friend

  8. Ed & Patty – Liliana & Tim told us about your adventure & blog. We look forward to following your progress up & down the coast & ultimately to Asheville. We visit Asheville several times a year, so if you need some onsite construction “obervation”, let us know.

    • Hi Chris and Glenn – You’ll have to visit us in Asheville once we finally move in–builders seem to be worse than ever when it comes to committing to a schedule but we’ll let you know when we’re finally settled (assuming we survive this trip), probably late Spring of next year.

  9. I can’t wait for your after photo. The two photos from your camping trip before you were married are hilarious! When are you getting to Watkins Glen? You know you have a house to stay in when you get to NY. Can’t wait to see you.
    Kary, Sister-in-law

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