What is it like, living in an RV and having a pandemic impact the ENTIRE WORLD and said pandemic interfering with not only your livelihood but also where you live? In one word – a bit scary. Okay, that’s three words but with everything going on, do you really want to argue with me about it?
A few weeks ago, Charlie and I confirmed that we were going to exhibit at Police Week in Washington, DC,(woohoo!) and our biggest concern was what airports would be along the way between Texas and DC so that I could travel to my meetings in March, April, and the two I had (note the past tense) in May. We felt so good coming up with our itinerary and coronavirus was something on the other side of the world. Late February to mid-March we would travel from Austin, Texas to Lake Tawakoni, outside of Dallas. The plan was that I would fly out of Dallas, to San Francisco for a meeting and Charlie would fly to Denver for JeffCo Sheriff’s Office’s awards ceremony to see our daughter, Carly, receive Detention’s Deputy Rookie of the Year award. This is when it got real.
March 4 - I arrived at my meeting that afternoon, we completed set up at 3:00 the next day and at that time the county health department asked all large gatherings to cancel. At 3:30 the meeting was officially canceled, we began notifying attendees and exhibitors, boxes and cases that had just been unpacked were repacked and the next morning I flew back to Dallas (after paying a $200 change fee).
March 8 - Charlie went ahead and left for Denver as planned and after he arrived, the awards ceremony was canceled.
March 14 - We began traveling to Alabama for the RV Entrepreneur Summit – knowing that there was a good chance it would cancel but that was where our next reservations were soooo. Sure enough, that got canceled.
During this time, I worked (and continue to) work with clients on messaging to their attendees, communicating with vendors, and essentially, closing down meetings and closing down revenue for not just myself but for hundreds of staff. Ones that are now being laid off or furloughed until this pandemic subsides and life can return to "normal". During this time, Charlie and I haven't even looked at our 401k's (you may not remember this but Charlie's law enforcement retirement is fully funded through a 401k and not a pension) It won't make a bit of difference and we are going to just have to deal with whatever happens. No need to torture ourselves. We learned that lesson in 2008.
March 19 - This is where we are today, at Lake Guntersville State Park. However states are closing their parks across the country to overnight camping and while I asked upon check-in what type of notice we would receive, they were unable to answer our question but assured us that at this time, they do not have any plans to close down. By now, I am a bit skeptical, lol.
Yesterday we received notification that Police Week is canceled as well. Our planned itinerary from Alabama to DC is no longer relevant, the next couple of months are in flux, and now Charlie and I have to figure out what we are doing and where we are going to go, all while not being sure if parks will close, reservations will be honored, and toilet paper* will be available.
So here we are, in Alabama, not quite sure what our next steps are, except for social distancing. When in public, I find it's like a dance, someone steps towards you, you step back... 6 feet people, 6. Feet.
TO BE CONTINUED
*luckily, Charlie had gone to Costco the day he dropped me off at the airport and re-stocked our supply - who knew that TP would become the new commodity?
The pics** below feature Lake Guntersville, our cats Lord Buttersworth (the fluffy one) and Wonkers, the slide extension to our stairs, and I found Hope along the way.
**disclaimer - once again, these are pictures taken by Tricia - who failed 10th grade photography class - and are not a representation of Charlie's work.