Wednesday, June 16, 2021
Wednesday, June 16, 2021

Members RV Travel Newsletter Issue 945

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April 25, 2020

If you would like to read this week’s issue with the ads included, click here.


Editor’s corner

With Chuck Woodbury

Our lives will be a lot different for a long time. “Normal” as we knew it will not return May 15, or anytime this summer. Maybe in a year we’ll gain some freedoms, but until a vaccine is available, how we live will be altered in ways that none of us can now imagine.

If you want to know what we are up against with the incredibly nasty virus we’re dealing with today, read the book “The Great Influenza,” the story of the 1918 Pandemic. It’s estimated that about 500 million people worldwide were infected and that between 50 and 100 million died — three to five percent of the world’s population. More than 4,500 people died in Philadelphia alone the week of Oct. 16, 1918. Local officials allowed a big parade to go on rather than cancel it, and deaths began to soar just days later.

My great-grandmother and great-uncle died in that pandemic.

Every Mayor, Congressman, Senator, Governor and the President should read this book. It’s eerie how much of what occurred then rings true today. It provided me with a far better understanding of what we’re up against and how we should deal with it. Despite the catastrophic effect self-isolation is having on the economy, there is no other way, short of a vaccine, to stop the spread of the vicious disease. COVID-19 has already taken the lives of two people I know, including our columnist and my good friend Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor. When you lose a friend or family member, the pandemic becomes all too real!

THE THOUGHT OF NOT RETURNING SOON to my previously normal life is difficult to imagine. I feel like a prisoner in my RV. I have written many times of what a charmed life I have lived. Many of us, I believe, who were born into the middle class in North America in the mid-20th century can say the same. And now, for the first time ever, our freedom has been taken from us. I don’t know about you, but I don’t like that one bit. Part of me wants to scream “unfair!” But then I remember that I am far better off than countless millions of others. I have a job, I have food and I have a comfortable place to live. How can I feel even a tiny bit of self-pity? I have no right!

The RV industry is spouting PR happy talk about how everything will soon be back to normal. That’s a nice thought, but it’s a fairy tale. How can it return to normal when there’s a virus out there that can stop us in our tracks so easily, and that has already cost more than 26 million Americans their jobs. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce estimates that about half of all small businesses in the United States have temporarily closed their doors. Most are mom-and-pop operations, where the owners have busted their behinds for years, created jobs, and in many cases struggled financially all the while to pursue their dreams. Talk about unfair!

Most of the readers of this newsletter are of an age that makes them prime targets for infection. Personally, it will be a long time before I sit in a crowded movie theater, restaurant or sports stadium. I’m not headed to any RV shows or rallies anytime soon, and I know I am not alone.

2017 Hershey RV Show

For now, we need to hunker down at home or in our RVs, catch up on reading, maybe take up a new hobby, and be thankful that we and our families are safe.

If you think what I have written here is just a bunch of negative mumbo-jumbo, then check back in two or three months. If I am right, then you may gain some confidence in my use of a crystal ball. If I am wrong, then I will deal with the massive amount of egg on my face and toss my crystal ball into a dumpster.

For you, for now, please be careful! Be safe! Wash your hands often. And if you have a few dollars to spare, donate some to your local food bank. Oh my goodness — millions of people, through no fault of their own, have lost their jobs and suddenly can’t pay their rent or feed themselves or their children — please help them if you can.

We are all in this together! Fight the invisible enemy with all you’ve got! Let’s come out the other side as kinder, stronger, better people.

chucksignature

LET’S DREAM A LITTLE. . .
Most of us are stuck at home now or self-quarantined in our RV. We’re not traveling with our RVs except to go from one place to another to wait out the coronavirus threat. We think that means there’s a whole lot of daydreaming going on about where to go when things return to normal. So we have a question for you: What RV trip is at the top of your bucket list? Is it an adventure to Alaska via the Alaska Highway? Or maybe you’d rather get your kicks on Route 66? Are there National Parks you’ve never seen but yearn to? Read more and consider sharing your dream trip with your fellow RVing readers.

My Roadside Journal

(about whatever is on my mind, not necessarily RV-related)


Stories in tomorrow’s newsletter

• Economic forecaster predicts RV industry will travel a “long and bumpy road” to recovery.
• Almost 231,000 bridges in the U.S. need repairs – and that’s not all!
• Person who defaced sites in Death Valley NP in January turns himself in.
PLUS: Campground updates • Latest fuel prices • Latest RV recalls • Free and bargain camping locations • Reader survey • and much more …


Brain Teaser

I am an odd number. Take away a letter and I become even. What number am I?
(Answer in tomorrow’s Sunday News newsletter.)


Last week’s Tip of the Day in RV Daily Tips Newsletters

Cool, clear, fresh and FREE water.
Why filter perfectly good water?
Is it really safe to boondock?
RV grill connection confusion.
RV Electricity: How much power do I have?


Keep “virus-safe” at the fuel pump

By Russ and Tiña De Maris
Some states are already relaxing restrictions put in place to curb coronavirus. While life may never really be the same as it was before the pandemic, one thing is clear – Americans are hankering to get back to travel. The fallout in oil prices has made for the lowest costs at the fuel pump in decades. But how can you fuel up and keep safe from COVID-19? Find out here.

Wind storm uproots trees, crushes RVs. See video (may be disturbing!)

Oh, my goodness! This truly is every RVer’s nightmare – a thunderstorm creates powerful winds blowing at 80 miles per hour. In this case, trees were ripped out by their roots, and then toppled onto RVs, trucks, cars and park buildings. Large hail damaged roofs and RVs’ siding. It happened Monday night at Wind Creek State Park in Alexander City, on Lake Martin in Tallapoosa County, Alabama. Watch the video.

Dear friends say goodbye to Gary Bunzer

By Mark Zepp
My wife, Amber, got the text message we had been fearing on April 17 at 9:50 p.m. Our dear friend had lost his month-long battle with COVID-19. Gary Bunzer was a living legend in the RV Industry. Over his decades-long career, under the byline “The RV Doctor” he wrote thousands of articles, produced numerous videos and gave countless seminars to thousands upon thousands of people on virtually anything that had to do with RVs. Continue reading.

Here’s something Gary wrote about his dad, George, a few years ago. It also gives us good insight into Gary and part of the reason why he will be missed by so many people. At the end of his tribute to his dad is a link to a song Gary wrote about him. The words could apply to Gary, as well. (He’s not the lead singer in it, but he’s playing his guitar.) A beautiful song and tribute to his dad – and to Gary, a most kind and generous man with a gentle soul.

Many places you can shop for huge savings right now…

Since most retail stores are closed, many have turned to their online stores to promote huge sales. If you are in the market for something new for yourself or your RV, now may be a good time to buy. Here are some stores having big sales right now.


Last year at this time, these were the most popular articles

“Real ID” Act may soon complicate RVers’ lives
Hitch Pitch: Take the pain out of RV leveling
Tire brand confusion: Who makes which RV tires and where?
How common is RV drivers’ road rage, and what can be done about it?


Reader Poll

How would you describe your mental health in these troubled times?

Please let us know. After you click your response, you’ll see how others have responded. Feel free to leave a comment. We’ll post the final results in next week’s newsletter. CLICK HERE.


Readers tell us (What we learned about you last week)

We analyze what we learned about you and fellow RVers from our reader polls and your comments.

What is your current relationship status?
Are you shopping more online now than a few months ago?
For self-quarantining couples, how well are you getting along?


Who is responsible for educating the RV park idiots?

By Rosanne Drechsel
There are so many things to love about camping and just as many opportunities to enjoy it safely. … We have camped for fifty years, the most recent five years as full-timers. … We have watched, and sometimes helped with, setup and take down procedures – trying our best to educate and share helpful information. Unfortunately, again this morning we watched an RVer perform his take down and pack up procedures using techniques that made no common sense. Read more.

Dometic’s new compressor-run refrigerator. Is it right for you?

Need a new RV refrigerator – or just tired of your old-style absorption unit? Dometic may have what you need. The new DMC4101 model tosses out LP gas-fired technology for an electric compressor cooling system. Unlike residential units touted by the RV industry, Dometic says it’s reevaluated and come up with a technology especially designed for RVs – one based on a 12-volt variable speed compressor. Learn more.

This campground is top secret. Do you know where it is?

We know of an amazing, beautiful, free campground. The campsites are underneath three-tiered waterfalls, and they’re so private you can’t see your neighbors. There are doves that bring firewood straight to your door. The bears are so friendly they offer to cook and clean and wash the dishes. And the river is overflowing with trout – you don’t even need a fishing pole! Where is it?

Want to downsize? Sell your stuff on eBay

By Chris Guld
We sold our house in 2003 and moved into an RV. First we packed the RV with whatever we needed. When that was done, everything else had to go! … I can’t say it was easy – sometimes it was gut-wrenching – but when it was done we were free. Free to go where we wanted and do what we pleased. Get more tips on how to become “free” here.

RV crime video: A look back at the great L.A. motorhome chase

Stuck in the house? Getting a little bored? How many hands of solitaire can you play? If you need a few minutes of rollicking drama involving an RV, here’s your chance. May marks the one-year anniversary of a police chase across the freeways and surface streets of Los Angeles that saw a reportedly stolen Class A motorhome in a demolition derby-like chase scene. Read more and watch the chase here.

California mountaintop beacon shines again to honor COVID-19 heroes

The historic beacon atop Mount Diablo in Mount Diablo State Park once again illuminates brightly in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Through the cooperative efforts of California State Parks and Save Mount Diablo, the beacon will continue to shine from sunset until sunrise each Sunday until the crisis is over. Read more.

Take a look inside this incredible retro RV!

We’ll bet you a brand-new Airstream that you’ve never seen anything as neat as this before! Arno van der Naald (in Belgium) posted these photos of his RV on the We love Old Campers and Motorhomes Facebook page. He writes, “Here [is]an impression of my ’71 Van Hool. It used to be a city bus in Brussels, Belgium. Built it 5 years ago.” He explains to a commenter that it does indeed run and drive. So cool! [I’m ready for a butterscotch malt, too thick to slurp through the straw! —Diane]

Semi sideswipes trailer – enough to ruin your whole day

With so many folks on lockdown, the road outside has been awful quiet. But digging back into history, we found this “sad tale of woe” from a couple who, last December, were minding their own business until they got an unexpected – and most unwelcome – visit from a semi-truck towing a stock trailer. Here’s the one-minute (cringe-worthy) video.

Your views from quarantine: What’s out your window? Part 2

With Emily Woodbury
👍
A few weeks ago I asked you to send us a photo of the current view out your window or door. As I mentioned when I posted the first batch of photos last week (you can see them by clicking here), I received about 200 photos (and you’re still sending them – thank you!). Not to mention the comments in last week’s post were so encouraging, I’ve decided to bring you round two. Plus, I just wanted to share more of your wonderful photos anyway. 🙂 See part 2 here.


Popular articles from last week

Thanks for this, Tom Hart!

Update on Virginia RV park devastated by governor’s shut down order.
FMCA struggles to retain members and cope with lost income.
Video: Take a spin in a toy hauler? We don’t think this is what they meant
Your views from quarantine: What’s out your window?
Full-time RVers in a bind. Here’s how you can help.
RV Electricity – Surge protectors: basic vs. advanced.
RV Life in a Coronavirus World: A story of a converted school bus and wild cows.
Have a good laugh: “My Self-Isolation Quarantine Diary
Hilarious! Couple sings, “Baby it’s COVID outside!”
Campground Chatter with Janet Groene, April 18, 2020.
RV Shrink: Becoming an RV “trunk popper” during the pandemic.


Resources

Our Facebook and RVillage Groups: RV Horror StoriesRV AdviceRV ElectricityRV Parks with Storm SheltersRV Buying AdviceNorthwest RV CampingSouthwest RV CampingFree CampgroundsBudget RV TravelRV VideosRV Coronavirus News • plus Texas RV Camping and Florida RV camping. And please join our group on RVillage (like Facebook except just for RVers).

Found in a museum in Port Gamble, Washington. Answer below.

Where to complain about bad RVs, dealers, service, RV parks. This is an ever-expanding list of resources where you can report, share or discuss your problems with RV manufacturers or dealers.

Best Club for RVers: Escapees. Click here to learn more or join. Endorsed by RVtravel.com.

The RV Show USA
Listen each Wednesday evening on Facebook or YouTube for the live taping of America’s only syndicated radio program about RVing.

RV Clubs
Check out our Directory of RV Clubs and Organizations.

What does financing an RV for 20 years REALLY mean?
In case you missed this article the first time around, here it is again. Important! Click here.

Stuck with a lemon RV? Contact Ron Burdge, America’s premier RV lemon law attorney.


Ask the RV Shrink

RV preppers in training – all about freeze-dried food

Dear RV Shrink:
I noticed in the comments of last week’s column that a reader named Tumbleweed suggested RVers stock up on freeze-dried food. Have you ever tried the stuff? Is that a good idea? Does it taste like cardboard? I’ve never heard of it before, but have been looking into it. Just thought I would get your two cents’ worth. —Future Prepper in Peoria

Read the RV Shrink’s two cents’ worth.


RV Education 101

Determining your RV’s pivot point

With Mark Polk
It doesn’t matter if you are driving a motorhome or towing a trailer, every vehicle has a pivot point. The pivot point is a fixed point on the vehicle at which the vehicle rotates around when making a turn. It sounds more complicated than it is. Read more.


RV Electricity

What’s all the noise about generators?

Dear Mike,
Are the so called RV-Ready generators any quieter than the contractor generators you’re always talking about? The salesman at the store says they are, but I’m a little leery of spending my hard-earned money on something that’s going to be too loud to use while boondocking. I’ve already added solar panels, but I might need to run a generator for an hour a day to charge my batteries if the sun doesn’t shine.

Read the rest of the question and Mike’s response.

This week’s J.A.M. (Just Ask Mike) Session:

How much power do I have? A reader wonders why the circuit breaker keeps tripping in the house from a trailer hooked up in backyard where wife, a health care provider, is staying to protect her family.

Sign up for Mike’s popular and informative RV Electricity group on Facebook.


RV Tire Safety

Can a tire blowout be “contained”?

Every few months someone posts a question on one of the numerous RV Forums Roger Marble monitors, asking if it is possible to prevent the damage done to the RV when a tire fails and has a belt separation or comes apart from a sidewall Run Low Flex failure. Here’s a bunch of information on that topic, as well as on the use of a TPMS.


Hot off the press! Sign up for our RV Daily Tips Newsletter!
Every Monday through Friday you get a short, informational email from us delivered straight to your inbox. Inside each issue you’ll find: quick RV tips, popular articles, reader polls, RV thoughts, helpful resources, a website of the day, RV clubs and organizations, trivia, jokes and more! If you don’t like it, you can easily unsubscribe, but we doubt you’ll want to. Read Friday’s issue here and then sign up here.


Building an RV Park

We’re still waiting!

By Machelle James
I have to admit, writing an article for you every two weeks is sometimes a challenge. Since everything is still frozen financially, we continue to do work that we can on our own. We have pulled out more than 20 tree roots with the help of our friends that have their RVs up here to visit when they can. Read more.


The RV Kitchen

Baked Oatmeal

Bake your breakfast. Assemble this dish a day ahead only if you wish. It’s creamier if soaked overnight. Then have that first cup of coffee while waiting for this hearty breakfast to come out of the oven. It’s very rich in fiber. As little as a scant cupful, topped with milk or yogurt, is a fill-up. Get the recipe. [This sounds delicious! Can’t wait to try it! —Diane]


The Digital RVer

Isn’t it time to start that travel blog you’ve been talking about?

By Chris Guld, Geeks on Tour
Most RVers keep notes of some kind when they travel – maybe in a paper notebook, maybe on Facebook, maybe by sending out emails. You’ve been meaning to put them all together, maybe even make a book out of them, right? During this pandemic with orders to Stay Home, you might just have the time to do it. Find out how simple it is here.


Back in the day…

What do you know about the history of RVing? RV history expert Al Hesselbart shares some fascinating stories:

Aviation pioneers and the early RVs
The history of motorized RVs
The evolution of campgrounds
The early RV visionaries
Sheldon Coleman, building a gear empire


Reader letters

Dear editor:
What might be the early prognosis for campers in June, July, August and September across the nation? I had plans for a trip on the Mother Road in July from Joliet, IL, to Oatman, AZ, then north to Vegas, Tahoe, N/E Washington state, Southern Idaho, Utah, and East on I-70 to Ohio. Would you think this might come to fruition? —C.A. Ramkey

Dear C.A.
You could probably do the trip, but it would be difficult to find places to stay, and many businesses, museums, parks, etc., will likely still be closed, which I think would lead to a lot of frustration. I’d highly recommend postponing the trip for a year.


Facebook Groups of Interest

Military RVing
The Real Housewives of RV’ing
Pennsylvania Camping and RVing

PLUS OUR OWN GROUPS: RV Horror StoriesRV AdviceRV ElectricityRV Parks with Storm SheltersRV Buying AdviceNorthwest RV CampingSouthwest RV CampingFree CampgroundsBudget RV TravelRV VideosRV Coronavirus News • plus Texas RV Camping and Florida RV camping.


Here’s an idea for you while you’re self-quarantining: Record your family history on your iPhone or video camera. If you want some inspiration, we recommend you get the book To Our Children’s Children. It will prompt many ideas of what to talk about. Your children and grandchildren will appreciate this when you are gone. Think about it, wouldn’t you love it if your parents could have done this for you?


Trivia

The word “whiskey” comes from Ireland and Scotland. The Gaelic word usquebaugh is an adaptation of the Latin phrase aqua vitae, which translates to “water of life.” The earliest account of making whiskey is in Scotland in 1494. By the way, Scots and Canadians spell whiskey without the e; the Irish and Americans spell it with the e.

Bumper sticker of the week

Turn signals – not just for smart people. —Thanks to Jaye Jeffress!

Have you seen a funny bumper sticker? Send it to diane(at)RVtravel.com

Joke of the Week

This is it. The day your dogs have been waiting for. The day they realize their owners can’t leave the house and they get you 24/7. Dogs are rejoicing everywhere. Cats are contemplating suicide.

Worth Pondering

“A lie can travel half-way around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes.” —Mark Twain (Thanks to Tom Speirs!) [Editor: And that was even before the internet!]

WHAT IS IT? (from above) A rug beater, of course. They were used from about 1880 through the 1920s for cleaning carpets and area rugs. The rugs were hauled outside, hung over a line, and pounded on with the beater until the dirt and dust were gone.


Did you miss last week’s RV Travel?

Read it here | Back issues


If you have not contributed to RVtravel.com for some time and would like to do so again, you may do so here. Thank you.


RV Travel staff

CONTACT US at editor@RVtravel.com

Editor and Publisher: Chuck Woodbury. Managing editor: Diane McGovern. Senior editors: Emily Woodbury, Russ and Tiña De Maris. Contributing writers: Mike Sokol, Bob Difley, Richard Mallery, Roger Marble, Janet Groene, Julianne Crane, Chris Guld, Machelle James, J.M. Montigel and Andrew Robinson. Advertising director: Jessica Sarvis. Financial affairs director: Gail Meyring. IT wrangler: Kim Christiansen.

FOREVER IN OUR MEMORIES — OUR STAFF MEMBER IN HEAVEN, Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor.

Honorary Correspondents: Loyal readers who regularly email us leads about news stories and other information and resources that aid our own news-gathering efforts.
• Mike Sherman • George Bliss • Tom and Lois Speirs • Alan Warren • Steve Barnes + others who we will add later.

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Everything in this newsletter is true to the best of our knowledge. But we occasionally get something wrong. We’re just human! So don’t go spending $10,000 on something we said was good simply because we said so, or fixing something according to what we suggested (check with your own technician first). Maybe we made a mistake. Tips and/or comments in this newsletter are those of the authors and may not reflect the views of RVtravel.com or this newsletter.

RVtravel.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. As an Amazon Associate we earn from qualifying purchases. Regardless of this potential revenue, unless stated otherwise, we only recommend products or services we believe provide value to our readers.

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Michael
1 year ago

The flu of 1918 doesn’t seem to be the greatest in history: Worldwide, the bubonic plague is estimated to have killed as many as 100 million people in the 14th century. That’s a much higher percentage of the population at that time. And that included 30 – 60% of the population of Europe.

Greg T
1 year ago

Chuck, I too totally agree with you. It will be a long time before things are back to “normal.” Not until there is a vaccine that is easily available will we have anything close to “normal.” And that will not be soon. Certainly not this year.
Contrary to what others are saying, we have definitely lost freedoms because of the pandemic. I can’t go camping. Commercial campgrounds are closed. USFS campgrounds are closed. Boondocking even on BLM land is closed. State parks are closed. National parks are closed. I can’t really go to stores and just hang out. I can’t go to a movie. I can’t go to a baseball game. I can’t get together with friends or family.
Granted, there’s nothing stopping me from going to the store or getting together with friends or family other than the fact that I am immuno suppressed and if I am exposed I could very well catch the virus. If I do, I can guarantee that I won’t survive. Sorry, but that is not an option for me.
I certainly have lost a lot of freedoms since January. And as long as people don’t take this serious, it will be a long time before I have those freedoms back. Just remember, your actions can affect others and not in a good way.

Diane Mc
1 year ago

Why when I click on the plus sign for a comment, it subtracts rather than adds….hmmm.

Diane Mc
1 year ago
Reply to  RV Staff

Oops…old eyes or maybe I thought every one should be voting with me😂.

Dennis Allen Jones
1 year ago

Earlier I left a positive comment that had Trump in it & it had to be reviewed. Canuck the Canadian leftest gets to spew hate against our duly elected President & gets comments

JBC Cripps
1 year ago

Chuck – your statement: “And now, for the first time ever, our freedom has been taken from us”. Please, your freedom has not been taken from you, not even close. That is a pretty self-serving statement. Life has changed and will be different for quite some time. We are dealing with things that we never imagined and the guidance we are getting is not very good. But if you think our freedom has been taken from us just look at those people of 21st century countries that live day to day without freedom, have never experienced freedom. That is real loss of freedom.
Right now, we must step back in time when we were more self-sufficient. Think of how your grandparents lived. That might be a stretch for many people.
We have not lost our freedom, nor has it been taken from us – everyone must now make life saving decisions that have resulted in significant life changes regarding things we all took for granted. No one could have imagined what we are dealing with today and of how it would change things overnight. There are challenges that are going to put a lot of people close to the edge – think in terms of having to accept public assistance for the first time – food banks, unemployment, etc. Rather than get angry and in denial recognize that if you are now in the position of needing public assistance recognize that there have been thousands every year, that must depend on public assistance due to job loss, etc. They were/are no happier about it than those facing it for the first time. It is tough, very tough, but your self-esteem is no less important than others. That example is only one of many, many realities that will have to be faced over the coming months. Every day programs are being created to help all those that are experiencing the worst possible outcomes associated with this crisis. Gov’t, communities and individuals are working extremely hard to offer support. Through all the restrictions we are experiencing there are sounds of freedom.
Social distancing is a reality, but I can still talk/see my family (technology), buy groceries, etc. Yes, I know technology is not available to some. Those following this site can likely continue to shop for anything they need (if in stock) and have it delivered to their door.
Things have changed, and no one knows if some of the changes will be with us forever. Today you cannot eat out, go to a movie, follow your favorite sport in real time, go to the bar, hang out with friends, take a flight, travel without risk, etc. A lot of people do not know what to do with ‘free’ time (oops, there’s part of the freedom word). Perhaps it is time for reflection. Just a thought.
For now, cook your own meals, give each other a haircut (or wait), clean the house, stay in touch with others as best you can, etc. – these are choices you have, and they have not been taken from you. Nothing is to be taken lightly.
This just barely scratches the surface of addressing the error of thinking “freedom has been taken from us”. Be grateful if you have never been unemployed, needed public assistance, lost your house, business went belly-up, etc. That happened prior to, right now (in unprecedented numbers) and will continue to happen to people even after we get through this crisis – those people really did/do experience a real sense of loss “for the first time”. That experience of ‘sense of loss’ will never go away – life is always complicated – people will always be unemployed and need social assistance – for more reasons than you can imagine.
Simply, none of us has had our freedom taken from us.
Make good decisions as best you can – Be safe and take care.

DW/ND
1 year ago
Reply to  JBC Cripps

Amen JB – Amen! …and by the way, I wish we could get rid of the term “New Normal”. It was a statement, erroneous statement, from our former President.

Goldie
1 year ago

Although I am uncomfortable with some of the steps being taken to reopen certain areas of the country, I think your comparison with the 1918 pandemic is unfair. I too lost a grandmother (who was 24) in that pandemic but medical care has greatly improved since 1918. Fatality rates for that pandemic range from estimates of a low 4% to 20%. Fatality rates for COVID-19 are running less than 2% and may be as low as 0.1% if some of the antibody testing is to be believed. One death is too many, particularly if it is your family member. But destroying a country isn’t the answer. We need to find a method that protects our high risk population but allows our country to function. Why punish those who are not high risk? I am higher risk and I will continue taking the same actions I have been to protect myself. Both of my children are essential employees who have continued to work throughout this pandemic – one in New York City – and have remained healthy. They are both middle aged (!) and healthy. I would not punish them or their families in order to save my health since I am still capable of making my own decisions – as are you.

Tommy Molnar
1 year ago

I know I’ll catch ‘heck’ for this, but it’s just my observation.

Today, EVERYTHING is political. EVERYTHING! And that includes the virus.

Diane Mc
1 year ago

Here’s a link from someone who works in healthcare at a hospital that has the largest number of CV patients in their county. Not NYC. An interesting perspective.

https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1253757777496780800.html

Don Kostyal
1 year ago

Weird. Last year we were talking about Real ID and needing the new tech driver’s license to travel. Now, you have to Stay In Place and finding a place to take you in has made traveling almost impossible.

John Ahrens
1 year ago

Chuck, I’m afraid that you’re missing the big picture. The economic collapse is not just an inconvenience, but people die because of it, too. Apparently in Alberta (not a particularly populous province) 16 more people die of suicide for every 1% increase in unemployment. Not to mention other causes. third world countries will get hurt worse, and starvation will not be far behind. Don’t forget, the politicos will not roll back, now that they’ve figured out a new means of short-circuiting the constitution. They will come for journalists, too.

It will be interesting to see how you feel next winter when food becomes increasingly expensive due to shortages caused by farmers unable to get the seed in the ground this spring because of supply chain disruptions. Of course, that means the poorest among us will starve.

And increasingly, the evidence suggests that this disease will be no worse than the seasonal flu.

Canuck
1 year ago
Reply to  John Ahrens

Unbelievable nobody that I know of thinks this way in Canada, we regard the limits and precautions being put on us by our government are exactly what they are. Helping us to stay save and healthy. I and many of my closest friends believe restrictions weren’t put up fast enough. The Canadian border should have been closed to all traffic except necessities of life immediately after this started.

Diane Mc
1 year ago
Reply to  Canuck

That’s why we are different. Founded on limited government and Liberty. Shutdown worked. Time to start opening up our country, especially in states and counties within states that have no issues. As I said in previous post, if we fail, the world will suffer, too, especially those from poorer countries. World wide depression with mass starvation.

Mike Osborn
1 year ago

Chuck, I just have to vent a little, triggered by your editorial in this morning’s edition (I’m a happy and loyal subscriber…thank you and your team for such a great resource for RV’ers!).
Give a crisis (like the coronoavirus) to government bureaucrats, and they will be: 1) late with solutions, 2) provide solutions that define overreaction, and 3) spend LOTS of our hard-earned tax dollars. Give a crisis to Congress and Governors, and you get that in spades.
Here’s how I — and I suspect many others — view this epidemic and its aftermath:
– Early panic and government decisions were based on REALLY bad modeling of infections, hospitalizations, and death. Models are extrapolations based on data, but in this case there was no data — EXCEPT for past flu epidemics — and the modelers assumed the worst case for every variable.
– That first error — erring on the side of a worst case scenario — led to the second error, which was to shut down the economy in an attempt to limit contact and infections. The federal and state governments thus applied a howitzer to the problem, when a well-aimed rifle-shot would have been far better and less damaging. So now we’re seeing massive unemployment, massive government spending, probable future inflation, and massive government debt to be repaid by our children and grandchildren.
– And it turns out that, while coronavirus is more contagious than many flu epidemics, it’s less lethal, and then largely lethal to those typically impacted by seasonal flu’s: the elderly, morbidly obese, and others who bring to their hospital bed a host of illnesses and a high probability of death in any case.
– So we’re in the process of destroying our economy — particularly the small businesses that employ most people and importantly, the middle class that drives our country’s economic health. Why? Because we had no facts in hand to base our decisions on and left our fate to our uninformed and frightened elected officials.
What we should have done — and should be doing — is controlling access to all businesses (put a guy or gal at the entrance to the store, to ensure everyone is wearing a mask) and going about our lives until this particularly nasty flu-bug runs its course.
Thanks for listening. I’m so incredibly frustrated at our collective elected incompetence. Argh.
Here’s hoping you can resume your travels shortly, and that we all can get back to living our lives. All the best, M.

mark b
1 year ago
Reply to  Mike Osborn

You have exactly one thing correct, almost. Immediately require everybody to wear a face mask so they protected themselves, the health system and others. I immediately wore one and was given looks of disbelief when I went into grocery store, UPS store, and Home Depot.

Immediately suspending that single freedom of choice would have been fought by ridicule and chants of liberal media hoax, as it still is. The impotent executive response has not supplied sufficient masks and sterilizer for healthcare and essential workers, let alone 330 million citizens.

The Defense Production Act has been used thousands (1000s!!!) of times during Trump’s administration, but stupidly avoided for Covid.
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/31/us/politics/coronavirus-defense-production-act.html

I am surprised you didn’t directly suggest we euthanize “those who bring to their hospital bed a host of illnesses and a high probability of death in any case”. It would keep the ICU clear and protect hospital and nursing home workers. In short, it would protect the herd with a well-aimed rifle shot rather than the unnecessary howitzer. Do we extend the “rifle” treatment to children and able-bodied workers of all ages when they contract covid? The hospitalizations are expensive, use PPEs, and put others at risk. Such a drain on our economy. It would be no different than our hunters culling the deer herd to remove those with Chronic Wasting Disease or the slaughter of animals with transmissible spongiforms like Mad Cow Disease.

PS Why deflect blame to everybody around you, “the collective elected incompetence”? You elected them. You didn’t help them prioritize the funding for the preparedness that our experts warned was needed. You have a voice that could have helped. Only the president gets to blame everybody else.

Diane Mc
1 year ago

I’m trying to be more optimistic. Yes, we needed to shutdown to help the hospitals from not becoming overwhelmed which was the main point of the SIP orders. A number of smaller states didn’t shut down, but did social distancing, they have low numbers. Up front, 1 death is too many. However, people die every day from disease, accidents, crime. 30,000 to 60,000 die from the flu every year. But it is spread over flu season, so we all just go about our business, except for those who lose a loved one to it. And it includes children, who mercifully have been spared from the CV. Back to CV. Over 50% of the deaths are in NY and NJ. In NY 16,000 of the 21,000 deaths are in the NYC area. After NY and NJ the balance of the 50% or 25,000 deaths are in the remaining 48 states, territories, cruise ships, etc. That’s 25,000 deaths spread over 300+ million people. Here in California, a state of 40 million people, we have 1600 deaths of which over 1000 are in So Cal. We live in Santa Clara County, population 2M, we have 98 deaths. The Bay Area of 9 counties has 8 million people with under 300 deaths. If it weren’t for NY and NJ area we most likely wouldn’t even be hearing about the rest of the country. Probably just a bad strain of flu. Recent information and testing of antibodies say millions of people have already been infected most likely going back to Nov/Dec. Staring to look like this happened in California. This research has been done by Stanford and major Universities in So Cal and elsewhere in the country. Maybe as many as 3 to 4 million infected. If we wait for a vaccine, which may never come, like a vaccine for HIV or the common cold, far more will die from the economy collapsing. Not just here. Because when we go, the world goes. I don’t have a problem with starting back up slowing. But surely people under 50 or even 60 could all return to work. Wait 2 or 3 weeks, then healthy people over those ages. If you look at the statistics, something like 98% of deaths have been over 70 (with majority of those over 80) and people with preexisting conditions. They are starting to do testing of all in nursing homes, the occupants and workers. Sad, since they can’t have visitors, but if they can find those than test positive & isolate then can start reducing the number of infected. Plus there are companies, research labs working on 76 different drugs that will not cure CV, but reduce symptoms and death. My heart breaks for those who have lost loved ones. I didn’t know Gary, but felt deeply saddened as I “knew” him through his writings and connections with Chuck and all things RV. In summary, I think we will be better off than most of us think, sooner than we think. That is what I pray for each night.

Sharry Buckner
1 year ago

Emily, thanks for the “Views from Your Window” photos. Enjoy them all.

GUY GEORGE
1 year ago

Chuck, now that you have time, consider reading these passages.
And thank God for wind………..A tree without wind grows shallow roots.

https://www.biblestudytools.com/topical-verses/bible-verses-to-comfort-you/

Bill
1 year ago

Too bad ‘social’ distancing became the normal term (who, I demand, is responsible for that ;] How about “healthy spacing” or “physical spacing”?
We don’t want to be socially separated, we just don’t want to pass along our germs to others!

Dennis Allen Jones
1 year ago

Chuck calm down! You gotta quit listening to mainstream media. Political activists have you running around with your hair on fire. Throw that crystal ball in dumpster. Our young & healthy people will be back to work & economy will roar back to life within three months for sure

mark b
1 year ago

Yes, I can see you are strong believer. Do you also believe ingesting disinfectant will prevent or eradicate Covid? And the cases will drop from 15, to 0 in just days?

And will banning immigrants, already in the country, from becoming citizens will solve anything? (I guess after his 2nd immigrant wife, Trump will “go local” if he marries again.)

Would you believe that 70% of the agriculture workers in California are illegal/undocumented immigrants, but somehow the Department of Homeland Security is unable to find these people, in plain sight. More than 1/2 of these “undocumented” workers are paying federal, state and local taxes, including many paying into social security, but they will never be able to get the benefits?

Let me see, where have I heard the phrase “roar back to life”? So catchy; so naive; so idiotic. When you have just realized that eating out, going to a ball game or theater could kill you, do you think you’ll be doing that every day? When you realize that travel on airplanes is even more dangerous than the restaurants, are you going to Disneyland? When you’ve finally come to the realization that you have been living from paycheck to paycheck, with no safety net, and now that your employer is no longer subsidizing your health insurance, you are one ER visit away from bankruptcy? You will save, which is also good for the economy, in moderation. You will not be consuming services, and consumer goods at the rates from before. You won’t be throwing away perfectly good clothing. You won’t be replacing your electronics every year. You will economize, which means the economy will NOT come roaring back. Your travel will be replaced with Kayak, bike or hiking trips nearby. If RVing, you probably won’t be upgrading because you still owe 15 years on your 20 year loan. Fortunately, with your RV you can take longer trips. Mostly though, your life will be changed until you are sure you either have had Covid, or you now have a reliable vaccine. So, 3-4 months? I think not.

Canuck
1 year ago
Reply to  mark b

I would agree, roaring back to life will not happen. Hopefully this situation wakes up the North American public to start living a simpler and yes a less insanely in debt up there eye balls life. Canada is worse than the US in this regard. I would hope this event has scared the hell out of people and they realize living paycheque to paycheque to own a house with a $800000 debt load and 2 $1000 a month cars in the driveway isn’t a smart way to plan your life. This keep up with the jones existence in North America has totally destroyed many families I am sure. When banks have to give mortgage holidays after a couple of weeks of work for people something isn’t right.

Joe Gluckman
1 year ago

Chuck, rarely do I read anything written today wherein I agree totally with the author. Your offering this morning embodies the words I’ve been saying for weeks. Our previous lives enjoy a great place in our memories but our lives took a different path in January of this year. Imagine, on January 7th, I had occasion to visit a community ER for what was a minor medical matter. The word “Coronavirus” wasn’t mentioned. Unfortunately, we’re in an election year, with politicians showing greater concern for their poll numbers than the millions of folks that need help. And right now our ship is rudderless. Keep up the good work.

Richard Brandt
1 year ago

Talking like that will not get you elected or re-elected to any office. It might be even worse than you stated. I can see us wearing masks and practicing Social Distancing for at least a year; and that’s even optimistic. Some vaccines take 18 months or even years to develop and distribute and the virus lurks everywhere. It only takes one misstep and it’s got us. Not even the best of leadership can make it go away any faster.

Canuck
1 year ago

Chuck, your opening remarks ended with “ We are all in this together! Fight the invisible enemy with all you’ve got! Let’s come out the other side as kinder, stronger, better people.“ I am a Canadian and generally we Canadians don’t really care what political party our neighbours voted for. We don’t call ourself’s a Republican or Democrat or conservatives or Liberals. Americans it seems throw all common sense to the wind and just because your a card carrying Republican you will vote for a person like Trump. If you really stand back and take a good look at this Man and the things he has said and done. He is a truly xxxxx human being, the people on the other side are just as bad they just don’t spew it out of there mouths like xxxxx Donald.

I truly hope your Country can come together and stop all the political horshit and help each other get through this nightmare, I have met so many great American’s in my life and it breaks my heart to see the nightmare that has become America. The corruption, inequality, homelessness in places like LA is a unbelievable injustice against humanity. I wish all American’s well though out this trying time. Throw your membership cards in the garbage can and start acting like you actually care about your fellow man.

Sink Jaxon
1 year ago
Reply to  Canuck

Ok Canuck…this all started with the last President stating.”We are 5 days from fundalmentally transforming America”. And he tried his best to do just that… which basically turned DC into the swamp of corruption. It’s none of your business if you’re not an American and please keep your politics out of this forum, WE are here to talk RV.

Gman
1 year ago

Chuck, I totally agree with you, that’s stating it to the point. If you get egg in your face, I’ll gladly wipe it off. States, cities can open up or relax the rules but that’s crazy with out a vaccine. Protesting that your rights are being violated when people world wide have died is ludicrous. The economy is a very big concern but what good is money when your to sick to spend it. Be safe and stay healthy my friends.

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