Before I begin, I was just reviewing the blog and noticed this blog is number 101! It’s hard to believe there have been that many posts, but looking back, my very first blog was on on 3/28/2012! That is nearly two years prior to Toni and I hitting the road fulltime on 9/1/2014. Crazy to read back over the initial thoughts,
dreams and discussions that lead to this amazing lifestyle. It has been quite the journey. Feeling sort of nostalgic, I took a look at the “day counter” on the website and noticed that as of today I have been living fullltime on the road for 1005 days!! Wow, that seems like a long time looking at the number, but it seems so short living it. The Odyssey thus far has been filled with the highest of highs and more recently the lowest of lows, but one thing is for certain, I feel like I am living exactly as I should. Enough of the rambling, back to current events. The last couple of weeks have been both relaxing and exciting at the same time. Leaving Flagstaff and heading over to our cabin in Forest Lakes Arizona meant some relaxing time. It has been so long since I have spent any time at the cabin. After making the decision to live the full-time RV life, we also decided that we would hold onto our cabin. Seeing as we kept Arizona as our domicile state, we needed an address to use and keeping our cabin as that address just made good sense. It has been in our family for many years and we always figured it would make a great “base” if we ever felt like we needed to stay in Arizona for any length of time. Before hitting the road we build an RV parking area that would allow us to show up with the RV and have a place to live in the motorhome on site. This is the first time the new Seneca has been parked on property and it has worked out well. If fact, I actually have just continued to live in the RV, even with the cabin here, and it is working out great. I had a week to just kick back and enjoy the area before taking the Jeep down to Phoenix to fly out for our oldest son Matthew’s graduation from Army OCS in Georgia. The week flew by. I focused on getting computer work caught up and worked around the cabin to make sure things hold up well while I am away for so many months at a time. I also managed to come up with a few RV projects to tackle….imagine that (watch for some upcoming Youtube videos). Having all this “house work” going on at the cabin got me to thinking about how much I LOVE living in the RV. I have no idea why, but it got me thinking of the fact that I have never named the Seneca. This is something Toni was not really so interested in doing, but would have allowed it had I come up with a reasonable explanation as to why it needed a name. I have tried for so long to come up with a name, but nothing ever seemed to click or feel right. As I was doing yard work of all things, it came to me! I have officially named the Seneca “The Black Pearl”. WTF you say? Well, I started to think about the freedom living in the RV brings me and I instantly thought of a scene from Pirates of the Caribbean that totally sums up what I think the Seneca IS. Of course it is not a ship, but the same reasoning applies…..
Black Pearl just seems perfect to me and gets my heart pumping thinking of adventure and makes we want to be on the road! Along those some lines, I am thinking to keep with the theme I may name the Rubicon “Interceptor”, as it accomplishes the same goals….just more quickly. Anyway, I was just excited that something finally made sense to me. You notice I said ME, everyone else with probably think I am crazy (most likely even Toni), but that is nothing new. Sits well with CC and I, and that is what matters. Looks like I need to start finding some nautical do dads for The Black Pearl along my travels!
Anyway, back to graduation. My trip down to Phoenix allowed me to wrap some some more loose ends with paperwork and meetings for my estate updates. After several months, it looks like I am done with all the items on my to do list after Toni’s passing. One of the most important things on my list was the headstone placement at Toni’s final resting place. It is all completed and turned out very well. I am so glad I had the opportunity to spend some time with Toni and talk with her about my future. I still feel her with me everyday.
Then it was off to Atlanta. Our youngest Patrick and I flew out early Tuesday morning and meet with up our middle son Adam and his wife Marrissa. We all attended a formal happy hour and dinner at the National Infantry Museum at Fort Benning. It was a great event and we had the chance to meet several more of the officer candidates that Matthew trained along side. Seeing all the young men and women willing to serve our country is so cool. I cannot even begin to express how proud I am of Matthew for his achievements so far. I knew Toni was looking down and beaming with excitement as well. Very exciting evening of fellowship not only with my kids, but all the other officers. The graduation ceremony itself was equally moving. Watching Matthew and the others walk across the stage accepting their new ranks and branches gave me great confidence in the future of our country. I am so thankful for all those that serve, and how amazing is it that his graduation lead right into Memorial Day. Anyone interested can learn a bit about Matthew’s Bravo Company at OCS on the Bravo Company Facebook page.
Not only did Mathew graduate with honors, he was accepted to participate in the Royal Military Academy at Sandhurst near London! Only a very few officer candidates from around the world are granted admittance to this program. He will train in the British Army Officer program over a forty four week period. It will no doubt be an amazing experience. Upon completion of that program he returns to Ft Benning to continue training, including Ranger and Airborne training. He has close to two years of tough training ahead, but he is excited to be a part of the Army, after several years in the Air Force. Looking forward to watching his progression…..and looks like a trip to London may be in my future to see graduation from the Royal Military Academy!
It was great to spend a few days with all the kids. Heading back to Phoenix I was in a rush to get back out of town. Being back in the 108 degree weather was great motivation to leave! CC had spend a few days in boarding, never her favorite thing, but it seems she did pretty well. She was super excited when I picked her
up. We hit Phoenix about noon on the Friday of Memorial Day Weekend. My plan was to grab CC and head directly back to the cabin in Forest Lakes where I left The Black Pearl at anchor (like what I did there). I made a quick stop in Payson to grab groceries and continued up the hill. Traffic was not as bad as it could have been. Having made the trip to the cabin from Phoenix for so many years on holiday weekends I knew it could be terrible and was expecting the worst. My plane landed at 12:18pm in Phoenix and I was pulling into the cabin at 8000’ and 68 degrees at 5:18pm. Not bad at all. I was glad to end the travel day which started at 5:15am Eastern time back in Columbus Georgia. My cousin along with some friends an all their kids and several friends are using the cabin for Memorial Day weekend. So I arrived to a busy compound. I continued to stay in the RV and everyone else was spread between the cabin and the bunkhouse. It was a great
weekend, filled with lots of darts, card games, baseball and of course some great craft beer! My cousin and his friend Bobby are also huge craft beer nuts and they brought up quite a selection of great beers. The weather has been amazing, low 70s for highs. I’m very grateful to get the chance to hang out with family and friends this spring. Everyone departed Monday morning, leaving me back to the solitude of the cabin with just CC. Our plan is to hang out hear for an additional couple of weeks, getting some RV and Jeep projects done. Then it will be back to Flagstaff for the 25th Annual Made in the Shade Beer Festival with family and friends once again. Super excited as it has been I believe three years I have missed the Made in the Shade Festival. I was an annual tradition for many many years. After the festival I will finally be headed out of Arizona for the rest of the year. I will begin in Utah and continue on to Colorado and the Pacific Northwest…..This entry was posted in Blog and tagged arizona, forest lakes, fulltime, gorving, kuhl, kuhlodyssey, livingthedream, nomadlife, rvblog, rvlife, rvtravel, seneca, the black pearl by Kurt Kuhl and comments are open.