Greetings everyone! Sorry it has been so long, but a lot has transpired in the past 3 months. Bottom line, is we closed up shop in MS in early March, sold the Coach, packed up our storage unit in Orlando in mid March, and closed on our new house in Wisconsin on the 23rd of March. A lot of moving parts to make everything come together, and in the end, it all worked out tremendously. Let’s get started.
We really enjoyed the remainder of the time we had with Jason and Meghan’s family in Mississippi. We got to watch the kids quite a bit, and we were able to enjoy Mardi-Gras on the MS coast as well. Terri and I were getting really worried that the coach had not sold as of late Feb, and we knew we were coming up on the end of our for sale ad on RV-Trader. We would have loved to keep the Coach, but we really would not need anything that big for when we start part-time RVing again. Also, we could use the infusion of cash from the sale to re-establish a home and all that goes with it once again.
As early March approached, we started receiving some calls on the Coach. In fact, on the last day it was advertised, we received 8 calls from folks that all seemed very interested. One gentleman in particular said he would call me the next day with a decision, and early the next morning he called me from his bank, handed the phone over to the banker, and she asked for the correct spelling of our name for the cashiers check! Done…site unseen!! This was like the 2nd of March or so, and this transaction really kicked things into high gear.
I had just the day before paid for the entire month of April at the RV park we were at, as I thought I’d be coming back down to Mississippi to pick up the Coach in April after we’d settled into our house…hit reverse please! The folks at the RV park were great, and refunded me the entire amount. Now it was time to figure out how to get almost three years of “stuff” out of the Coach and get it ready for delivery…and how to deliver it. The gentleman that purchased it is from Georgia, and we decided that we would meet each other on the 10th in Florida at a rest area on I-10. This would allow us to go over things on the Coach, and then turn south toward Orlando to get ready for the clearing of the storage unit and eventual move to Wisconsin. OK…getting ahead of myself here. Let’s back up, and let some of the photo’s do the talking.
Oh yeah, in mid Feb I went out to pull the living room awning out, and the internal spring broke. Hmmm…we’ve been to this rodeo before. In fact, Terri and I had just replaced this Zip-Dee awning spring when we were in Iowa in May. I made a quick call to Zip-Dee and sent them a couple of photos, and they shipped a new mechanism out that day. Great company that stands behind their product, and also has great tech support.
Terri found out that the small town of VanCleave, MS was having their annual parade as well, so we ventured out into the country to find it. This parade is unusual in that it takes place on a small winding road in the middle of the country. We were lucky we found the place before the parade got going, as it starts at the end of a dead-end road. We got to the end, turned around, and found an elderly lady that let us park in her yard for the parade.
Just like that, our time in MS had come to a close. We spent the week of the 5th of March packing, unpacking, and repacking. As I mentioned earlier, it is amazing how much “stuff” we actually had in the Coach. So much so, that we rented a U-Haul trailer and filled the truck to the gills for the trek to Orlando. The Coach had to be empty, as we were meeting the new owners to make the transfer on Friday, the 10th. We were up and at it early on Friday the 10th, and met the new owners just before noon. Neither Terri or I slept a wink the night before. Last minute packing, cleaning, and worrying. That never does one any good, but everything runs through your mind at the last minute…will the Coach behave? Will the deal go through? Will the piece of crap U-Haul trailer make it all the way? Everything had to come together just right. Get to Orlando, find a place for all of our Coach stuff, as our present storage unit was full to the top. Find a rental truck…find help to load…get loaded on the 17th, and make the trip to Wisconsin on time for a March 22 walk through, and a March 23 close…hope everything about the house was the way we remembered and all the inspection items had been taken care of….
We were greeted by a gorgeous morning. The Coach fired right up, and we had an enjoyable trek into Florida. Terri followed me with the truck and U-Haul in tow. It was bittersweet having the time in the Coach by myself for those few hundred miles. All the memories flying through my mind, along with the expectation of beginning a new chapter in our lives.
When we arrived at the rest stop we’d agreed on, we were met by the new owners. They had a short window of time for us to show them how everything worked, as they needed to get to Jacksonville, get the Coach set up, and head off to a baseball tournament. We knew this in advance, so we wrote up as many helpful hints and cheat sheets if you will as to how to operate the Coach. When we purchased it, the former owner spent two days with us to make sure we had everything down pat, and there was still a bit of a learning curve after all that time. It all went well; however, and after a few hours, we saw our home for the past nearly 3 years motor on down the interstate.
Well, it was a fast paced end to an awesome chapter in our lives, and time to turn the page on a new adventure. After the Coach motored on out of sight, Terri and I just sat in the truck for a bit (after I’d deposited the check electronically and made sure it cashed:) What a load off of our minds. Now we could focus on clearing the storage unit, and getting ready to head north. We were both dead beat tired and hungry. We headed into Lake City for lunch, and planned to grab a hotel room and catch up on some much needed sleep. Lunch was great, but there were no hotel rooms to be had. Daytona bike week was starting, and it was still Spring Break, so our only choice was to motor on down the road to Orlando, and hope to make it to Justin and Mandi’s house in one piece. Traffic on I-75 was horrific for the most part, but we finally made it late in the day. Thank goodness for Mandi and Justin, and the hospitality they afforded us!
After a long nights rest, we were able to focus on getting a rental truck arranged, found some folks to help us move, and were able to move all of the stuff out of the U-Haul and into a storage unit right next to the one we had for only $40. The folks at our storage place treated us right. We only needed the room for one week, and they we accommodating. We were able to take the trailer back to U-Haul right away on Saturday to avoid any additional fees. We spent the week getting everything in the storage unit packed up so it could make the 1200+ mile drive north. We were also able to spend some really fun time with my mom and dad, and Mandi and Justin.
Just like that, it was the morning of the 17th of March, and load day. We had some great guys from a local moving company help us load, and we were done by 3 in the afternoon. That worked out great. Enough time to get back to Mandi’s and have a quiet evening so we could hit the road at 4 in the morning.
We were on the road as planned at 0400 on the 17th of March. Not knowing what the Spring weather would bring as we headed further north, we wanted a day or two buffer before the 22 March walk through and 23 March close. The trip, although long, was quite uneventful. We had great weather most of the way. We made it to Murfreesboro, TN the first night, and all the way to Rockford, IL the second night. That is a night we’d rather forget however. The first room we were given was smoke filled…in a non-smoking hotel. They gave us another room, but forgot to update their registration list. Thank goodness we flipped the latch on the door before we went to bed. About midnight or so, we heard an awful banging. I jumped out of bed, and saw someone trying to get into our room…they had a key. Long story short, they double booked our room, and gave a key to someone else. In the end, they comped the room for us…what a night.
We made the trek the rest of the way on Monday, and arrived at Terri’s mom’s house in the early afternoon.The walk through on the 22nd went great, as did the close on the 23rd. We were completely unloaded and had the rental truck back by late afternoon on the 23rd. Since that time, we have been busy getting everything where it needs to be, and stimulating the local economy by purchasing all the things we had either given away or sold when we sold the last house…you know, stuff like couches, beds, yard tools, lawn mower, car for Terri, and on and on. It has been fun, and we have been taking it slowly. We’ve spent a lot of time in the back, working on clearing trees and brush so we can see the river from the house and the deck. Our lot is about 3 acres, with about 600 feet of river frontage. We have our bird feeders up, and they are always packed. We’ve seen deer, turkeys and other assorted wildlife, and have been thoroughly enjoying getting reacquainted with life in Wisconsin!
That about wraps up this iteration. Still a lot to do here, but nothing is an emergency, so we are taking it a little at a time. We are enjoying getting reacquainted with the area, friends and family. We are always open for company, so if you find yourselves headed in this direction, give us a shout. As far as the RV thing goes, we will start looking for our next “home away from home” once we get a bit more settled.
So…that sums up what’s been keeping us busy! As always, we hope this finds you Happy, Healthy, and Living Your Dreams!!!