Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Memorial Day Weekend at Escapade

I'm finding my notes will be brief here because, honestly we are just finding so much to do that I don't have much time to get on this computer!

It's really good that they plan these Escapades with most activities in side because it has been nearly non-stop rain here! The picture above is the main venue for any activities where the full group gathers.

They have the daily door prize drawings here which is very entertaining in itself. The couple doing the drawings are their own standup comedy routine in seems!!

Sunday evening we had awesome entertainment by a group called 'New Odyssey". They play 30 different instruments, sometimes more than a dozen at a time.

The drummer also does a really mean Tina Turner!!

His Louis Armstrong was amazing as well. I included the link above to their website. If you are in the area where they are performing its well worth a slight detour to take them in!

We are attempting to get in a smattering of all the activities so I attended the line dancing class. I am finding I absolutely love line dancing even though this is only the second time I've ever done it. Anyone in the class that wants to can also be part of the Thursday night talent show. If I didn't have so many other things I want to take on that would have been great...just can't get it all in! Ah so much world...so little time!!

A blog on Escapade would not be complete without including this little lady. Kay Peterson and her husband Joe started Escapees back in the 70's and have a truly amazing story to tell. Considering they are Escapee #1, and they are now in the 104,000 member range, (and it counts rigs, not people, Ken and I are one number), its nothing short of incredible what she has done to organize a like minded group of people who are looking for the most out of life. Kay has an great sense of humor and its so fun to listen to her tell their story. For example, she and Joe met at Parents-Without-Partners back in the early 60's. She says they didn't actually marry until several years after that, since there are 7 women to every one man in the organization, and it took Joe that long to make the rounds and get back to her!! She said he didn't really take her serious about wanting to full-time until he came home from work one day and she had sold all their furniture! She's one really feisty and inspirational woman.

Meanwhile, back at the rig, the flamingos put out their flags in honor of the Memorial Day holiday. We are parked next to a pod of Airstreams. One of the owners felt obliged to let us know that flamingos are very partial to Airstreams and that they wouldn't be surprised if our gang here decided to migrate next door!

Note to self: Rainy weather and humidity, along with wearing Tilly hat leads to unsightly hair explosion--need new hair strategy for RV Lifestyle!!) We had this picture clicked with our new friends, Doug and Dee. Sunday evening we decided to go to Perkins versus eat back at the rig. As we were heading in from the parking lot we started up a conversation with Doug and Dee and they invited us to sit at their table. (Escapees wear their lanyards in to the community so that the local merchants are more aware of how much business we are actually giving them in return for the various donations they give to the group. Perkins had given lots of door prizes). Doug and Dee have a great story, having got together after the death of Dee's first husband. They are Texas residents now and very involved in the amateur radio group here in Escapees. It seems after a few years everyone finds their nitch 'community' within this bigger Escapees community. We plan to try to 'lurk' for a year and see where we seem to fit best. We think we are particularly interested in the Habitat for Humanity group, and the DOVE group(American Red Cross emergency services) as well as the group that does volunteer services for Escapee's CARE which is the 'retirement home on wheels' for full-time RVers who temporarily or permanently must get off the road due to health.

The Memorial Day entertainment was the Brett Family. This is your typical Branson show entertainment, not exactly something Ken and I would pay to go see, but still an enjoyable evening. Talk about a woman who's a tribute to 50-year old women--Andrea (well she's 49 so that's close) looks so young that I was not sure until the introductions which was mother and which was daughter!
Besides being entertained we have actually been learning a lot. For example, I sat through an lectrical workshop that did a great job of helping me understand the actual differences between 30 amp, 50 amp, watts and voltage. I even understand now why Ken was so concerned that we were experiencing low voltage at a Tennessee park last year. The 'quality' of your electricity is not something you think about when you are sitting in a 'stick n bricks' house every day but when you are plugging in at different places all over the continent, preserving your investment in your rig's electical systems and guarding against 'dirty electricity' is something you have to watch for.
Ken also attended a more detailed presentation on filtration systems. Again, when you are hooking up to different water across the continent you want to preserve your investment in your health by guarding against contaminants. We already have multiple filtration systems in our unit but with Ken's lately-found success attending to more natural health solutions he is now more committed than ever to insure that there is nothing unhealthy in our water systems.
I was also pleased to find an investment advisor who specializes in working with the unique needs of retired full and extended time RVers. The gentleman and his wife actually live in the Escapees Rainbow Park in Livingston so they definitely 'walk the walk'. Ken and I were lucky enough to sell my company stock at the right time and to move our money out of the market in to fixed funds at about the right time, but now its time to start moving back in to the market and we are not willing to continue to count on luck, but instead want to find some good experienced advice, that isn't from someone whose prime motivation is selling us on the funds where they make the most profit. This was a big item on my 'shopping list' here at Escapade so I hope to spend more time vetting this investment advisor while here.
We had another interesting conversation with an optometrist, Ken's age, who has just retired with his wife to see the country in their new 2009 Allegro Bus (yes, sexier brother to our dream RV, the Phaeton). He mentioned that while they still own his business/apartment in Arizona, they now have their official residence in Texas. One reason for that was that in Texas, if you currently have medical insurance, then Texas medical insurance providers cannot exclude you or apply waivers for pre-existing conditions --- all right! Medical insurance has always been a big concern to me so I'm really anxious to check this out further.
I don't have my pedometer with me but I'm sure I'm getting in my 10K (10,000 steps) a day, walking here. We've been pretty good about letting the jeep sit and hoofing it. I love that - but it would be better if it wasn't through the rain and slosh!
We have lots more to see and do so I'm going to head out now.

Hugs, C

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