ONE OF THE THINGS ABOUT TRAVELING IN AN AIRSTREAM—people want to ask you about traveling in an Airstream. For people like My Amazing-Missus this is all fine and dandy. She genuinely enjoys visiting with others and they with her. Me too; on a case-by-case basis.
Recently we were camped in a beautiful park on a beautiful day. I looked outside and no one was around. So, I decided to lubricate the gaskets around the Airstream’s windows. A car pulled up and a gentleman got out. I’m guessing he was a bit older than me. He started with the most oft-asked questions of the Airstream-curious:
1.) Are they still making these?
2.) How long is this? (Remind me to tell you that joke I made up in the category of “does size matter?”)
3.) How much does something like this cost (if you don’t mind me asking)?
He looked familiar. Turns out we were acquaintances years ago. I had heard that his lovely wife had been diagnosed with dementia and is now in a nursing home.
He told me that years ago the two of them had dreamed of having an Airstream and seeing the country. That’s why he had stopped to take a look at ours—just to reminisce a bit.
He asked if we were traveling full-time. I told him not yet, that I was still working. He said, “Go to work Monday and tell them you’re retiring. Don’t delay. You never know what tomorrow holds.”
Is this a sign, I wondered. Is he a prophet of some kind?
It’s not like we’re just sitting around. We’re out there. Seeing the sights. Seeking adventure. I’ve taken the sage wisdom of Ferris Bueller to heart:
Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it. (from Ferris Bueller’s Day Off)
Remember that girl, the one from the Beatle’s song: “She was a day tripper, a Sunday driver yeah…”
For now we’re day trippers; long weekend trippers at best. But we’re moving, we’re going, so we can stop. and look around.
Remember that guy, the one from the Beatle’s song, the one they called the “nowhere man”? Funny thing. I used to see him as a sad, aimless, clueless, hopeless shell of a person. But now I feel like I sort of get him.
He's a real nowhere man
Sitting in his nowhere land
Making all his nowhere plans for nobody
Doesn't have a point of view
Knows not where he's going to
Isn't he a bit like you and me?
Nowhere man please listen
You don't know what you're missing
Nowhere man, The world is at your command
He's as blind as he can be
Just sees what he wants to see
Nowhere man, can you see me at all?
Maybe he is a bit like you and me.
Oh yeah, my joke. An old guy and his Amazing-Missus walk in to an Airstream dealer.
Walt (the rv sales guy): How can I be of assistance to you folks today?
Me: We’re thinking of buying an Airstream.
Walt: Great plan! How long do you want it?
Me: A long time. We’re planning on traveling across the country and back again.