Fantasy RV Tours

Maximize your RV experience, minimize headaches.

Such is the promise of Fantasy RV Tours:

It continues to be our mission to guide RVers to new places, reveal authentic cultures and offer a value unlike any other travel company. We understand the importance of cherished memories and bonding relationships, and we have included that spark of passion as an ingredient in all that we do.

It’s my sincere hope that the destinations featured on here impassion you to join us. You will see and enjoy more than you ever imagined – sharing an experience and a journey with friends you have yet to meet.

I still remember the time we spent with Chris, one of the Travel Ambassadors for the company. I posted about our time together here. It was our second visit to the RV show in Hershey, Pennsylvania and it was our first year with our new coach. We had taken delivery of our coach in June of 2016. Our trip out to Pennsylvania  in September of 2016 was one of several road trips that we took with our coach that year.

It seems so long ago now.

Chris was very passionate about the RV lifestyle and very passionate about Fantasy RV Tours.

She had such clarity about life, about living in the moment and about pursuing your dreams. She told me to get out there before it gets too late.

And here I am.

Still working.

Coach in storage.

Waiting.

I have about 7 months left before career ends and retirement begins. Work has not really changed in any meaningful way for me. It is still very much a high demand, high stress role and I suspect it will remain that way until I finish up late July.

Rather than being frustrated with working another 7 months or so because, believe me, I would much rather be out there right now. Especially as the cold weather descends.

No, I am choosing gratitude. To be thankful for my lovely wife and my wonderful family. To be thankful for the company that I work for as the company has allowed me to provide well for my family and the company has helped me achieve financial independence. To be thankful for the moment. Healthy. Engaged in life. Living in a wonderful country. With great friends.

For many of my American friends, they have been celebrating Thanksgiving this weekend. Although the dates differ between Canada and the U.S. — Canadians celebrate Thanksgiving in early October — staying focused on gratitude keeps the challenges of life in perspective.

We will be out there soon, Chris.

Soon.

RV Success School

I’ve followed Marc and Julie’s blog since they started their website and I have also followed them on their YouTube channel.

They seem like a very nice couple, the kind of folks I would love to meet on the road.

On their about page, they make the following statement:

We’re here to dispel a big myth. There’s a myth that the RV life is only for retired folks, but that’s simply not true. Not anymore. These days, RVing is for couples, singles and families. RVing is for anyone who has ever dreamed about seeing the country (or world) up close, from one end to the other, one mile at a time.

Which led them, after a few years, to create the RV Success School.

I understand their situation. They love the RV lifestyle and they are not retired. Although it is possible to work remotely while traveling, I’m sure it comes with its own set of challenges. And certainly, it led Marc to finally quit his job after a few years of working while on the road.

There are many people attempting to monetize their websites and their YouTube channels. In a way, it is a spin on the book business: create good content, bring in a pool of followers and then try and sell a smaller number of followers on a subset of content.

It can’t be easy to sell an online education program with so much free content on the web. I wish them well.

For most of us, we have a season of life where we spend our days providing for our families and setting some money aside for the future. A time arrives where it is obvious that there may be other dreams to follow. Retirement is usually when dreams like traveling full-time in an RV can be realized.

Some chase their dreams early.

But it is never free.

En Francais SVP

Let’s get back to another goal shall we?

Getting ready for retirement means getting ready to live out our third act of life. And my hope is that Lorraine and I will enjoy a wonderful life during our golden years.

Our coach will be a big part of that life.

Having goals will also be a big part of that life.

I have been working on them over the past little while. I have talked about my cycling goals here and my music goals here.

2 goals down.

28 more to go.

Here is a third goal: during my first two years of retirement I will relearn my conversational French. And, to celebrate, Lorraine and I will take a trip to Paris at the end of that two year period. Assuming, of course, that I can speak French really, really well at that point.

Nothing like a bit of incentive.

When I was 15 years old, I did a French studies program through the Protestant School Board of Greater Montreal. I had the opportunity to travel to France and become immersed in the culture and the language. I have wonderful memories of Bandol and Ile de Bendor, beautiful spots in the Cote d’Azur, where I lived and studied.

I still have my notes from when I studied there. And all I can say is that at one time I had an incredible command of the French language.

Having spent 40 years in a predominantly anglophone environment has taken its toll.

3 goals down.

27 more to go.

All That Jazz

music

I do have a bit of a problem. I’ve been playing guitar for a long time now, closing in on 45 years. I have invested my 10,000 hours in practice. I have become somewhat accomplished on the instrument. I love to play.

And it shows. I have built up quite the collection of guitars over the years. Here are a few of them. I have 17 in all.

someofmyguitars

I won’t be taking all of them with me when Lorraine and I are travelling in the coach. Two, or maybe three. An amp. Some pedals. It will be tough to choose.

Music has been a very important part of my life and it is one area of my life that I will continue to develop during my retirement years.

Music is the one incorporeal entrance into the higher world of knowledge which comprehends mankind but which mankind cannot comprehend — Ludwig van Beethoven

Most of my playing has been in the area of contemporary music, rock, pop, with a little bit of jazz thrown in.

My hope is that I will still have enough capability in my hands to continue playing long into my retirement years. And I want to master the art of jazz guitar. Now, jazz is a long journey and I won’t fully master the instrument in my lifetime. In my first year of retirement, I will add one new piece every month into my jazz repertoire. And perhaps I will get a tiny bit closer to this incredible legend in the video below, Joe Pass.

Retirement goal number 2 down. 28 more to go.

The Waterfall

waterfall

I am an optimistic chap, and you should be, too. Much the best approach to life. But let us have another candid moment. Turning sixty can be awful damn bad if you don’t watch out. And even if you do. Think about it. Some people actually die in their sixties. Not hit by cars or fallen off their bikes. Just die, of semi-natural causes. Like heart failure and cancer-of-the-this-and-that. It is highly unlikely that you will die, of course; I understand that… But death is out there somewhere, and it can make you moody. You keep hearing the waterfall in the distance, and you wonder all the time, What’s that noise? As if you didn’t know. Scary. Very, very scary.

Younger Next Year, by Chris Crowley and Henry Lodge.

As I think about our 30 goals for retirement, the sound of the waterfall keeps getting a bit louder.

Turning sixty can be bad. A friend that should be enjoying life in his sixties is now enduring the final stages of terminal cancer. He is only a few years older than me.

There is a fear. Not so much of death itself, although I hope that it won’t be a long, painful, drawn out affair. The fear? Time.

Not enough time to achieve the goals that we will set for ourselves during our retirement years.

One of the most important goals for me will be focused on physical fitness, and not the generic “I will be a healthy person” type of goal.

I love cycling and my hope is to ride as much as I can during most of my retirement years. I started into my winter training program a few weeks ago, spinning about 7 – 10 hours a week. Intense spinning. Hard, painful workouts.

But the goal is not to complete the winter training program. The goal is to prepare for specific rides and events.

In retirement, one of my goals will be to participate in no less than one Gran Fondo a month for the first year.

I will use this calendar to plan for the Gran Fondo nearest wherever Lorraine and I happen to be.

And, whenever I find myself thinking too much about the sound of the waterfall, I will think about why I need to keep pushing myself on a bike.

Riding gives me life and it keeps me living well.

Goal one down.

29 more to go.