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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-22-2007, 03:35 PM   #81
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

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Originally Posted by audreyh1
IMO RVing and camping is very compatible with fishing.
Well, under some circumstances........

I'm having trouble imagining the float plane getting off the water with a Class A RV strapped to the pontoons!

BTW, I agree with you on the Forest Service campgrounds. The ones I've stayed at are terrific! We've done some fantastic canoe camping on Missouri rivers in the spring and stay at Forest Service campgrounds along the way, accessing them by water instead of road. Years ago we would have scoffed at the idea and camped on gravel bars along the river. But, as geezers, those Forest Service johns and showers are pretty nice. Especially on weekdays before school is out when the campgrouds are pretty deserted.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-22-2007, 05:04 PM   #82
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

I used to have a RV (5th Wheel) for camping from May through Nov, and I paid about $8000 for it and it was well worth the $$$. It was in excellent condition and it was when I sold it. I ultimately purchased a new 5th Wheel trailer last year and have been living (full-timing) in it. With all the news reports of how filthy hotel and motel rooms are there is no way I would pick a hotel room over my own RV bed, sink and toliet! One thing for sure I don't have to pack and unpack and find a fast food place to eat. Whatever I have is with me at all times. As far as maintenance and other cost involved are minimal if you take care of your stuff. If you buy a trailer there are no transmissions or engine parts to deal with, and basically only tires and wheels that should be kept torqued and proper PSI. A good cleaning and conditoning twice a year will keep the exterior up to par and prevent fading and cracking. But above all, you have your own lot, camp-fire pit, and picnic table and patio anytime you get to a campground or state park....which certainly you will never get at a hotel. A hotel basically provides you a Toliet and Bed for an outrageous amount of $$$. that's not my style of vacationing. You pay for a hotel and get nothing in return, you pay for an RV and you can keep it for many many years. my 2 cents
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-22-2007, 06:26 PM   #83
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

When you go into the campgrounds admin building to register and pay, do you use your hankie to cover the doorknob so your hand doesn't touch where others' hands have touched?
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-22-2007, 06:42 PM   #84
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

" You pay for a hotel and get nothing in return, you pay for an RV and you can keep it for many many years. my 2 cents"

You get not having to deal with a RV
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-23-2007, 07:02 AM   #85
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

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When you go into the campgrounds admin building to register and pay, do you use your hankie to cover the doorknob so your hand doesn't touch where others' hands have touched?
Only if the other people in the room aren't wearing their tinfoil hats.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-23-2007, 10:16 AM   #86
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

My apologies for offending with the photo. In my defense, she is wearing pants, if you can call 2sq in of fabric "pants"... :P
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-23-2007, 12:07 PM   #87
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

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My apologies for offending with the photo. In my defense, she is wearing pants, if you can call 2sq in of fabric "pants"... :P

Hopefully someday America won't be so uptight about Sex and Nudity. In Europe they have commercials on TV that show far more skin than your picture did! :
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-24-2007, 01:11 AM   #88
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Getting back on topic . . . . My husband and I recently bought an RV (small 5th wheel) and like many other posters here, we didn't do it to save money on motels.

My husband has an old back injury and can end up in pain if he sleep on a bed with poor support. It puts a damper on our vacation fun when he has to spend the day taking pain meds. Some motels/hotels have fine beds, others don't. But with the RV, we are able to outfit it with a bed of our choice.

We also wanted better way to visit our state and national parks. I don't do well with tent camping so we had stopped going. Now that we have the trailer we can go again and I'm looking forward to that.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-24-2007, 06:09 AM   #89
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by audreyh1
We also discovered that the "gypsy life" aspect - being able to make sudden changes in plans, get by with minimal reservations, stay longer someplace if we felt like it, move on when ready - this was a very powerful draw. Just loved being able to be spontaneous in our travels.
I'll second that

On my last long-term trip (November '06) there was some bad weather expected on my 'travel day'. I only had to get from Des Moines to Mahoney State Park in Nebraska (halfway between Lincoln & Omaha) in two days. So I just stayed at the campground an extra day (gypsy diversion #1). Then, on the way in, I have a good friend that works in Omaha. I timed my departure so we could meet for lunch. I just parked the RV in the back of a mall parking lot and we went off to lunch (gypsy diversion #2).

I was going to Mahoney to meet my family and most of our friends from Nebraska (where I grew up) to celebrate my dad's 60th birthday. I was in Des Moines for two weeks before that to do some technical training (after expenses, I profited about $1900...the trip was paid for).

Anyway, when I planned to head back to WV the weather was pretty bad in Illinois (remember that big snow storm that hit at the end of November). My dad decided to ride back with me so we 'sat tight' for an extra day (gypsy diversion #3). We saw my mom off at the airport in the morning and headed out ourselves. Mom had to be back for w*rk

Since my dad flew out, he didn't get a chance to visit some old family friends in Des Moines (and they couldn't make his party). So we stopped in Des Moines for a few hours to visit them (gypsy diversion #4).

On the same day, the Huskers were playing in the Big 12 Championship game in Kansas City. It was pretty bad weather down in KC, so we ended up not going that way (instead we went though Des Moines to visit), but had it been good weather, we were considering taking the 'southern route' home with a long detour if you catch my drift (alternative gypsy diversion) 8)

Instead, I just fired up the inverter and watched the game while traveling. We have a 'Euro Recliner' (reclining chair with a detached foot stool) about 1/3 of the way back in the living area. It's the best chair to watch TV in. Thus, if you can imagine sitting in your favorite 'comfy chair', watching your favorite team (lose unfortunately) on a 27" TV while traveling. My dad got a pretty big kick out of that

The real irony is my mom got stuck in Chicago because of the backlog of flights due to the weather. So we actually beat her home

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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-24-2007, 01:15 PM   #90
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

It's been interesting to read how many ERs love their RVs, and make them a big part of their lives. It seems that the social aspect can be a big draw too, at least from reading various webpages and blogs on RVing. No one is going to come over and invite you to a potluck when you move into the typical suburban or urban neighborhood today, but it sounds like there is a lot of that happening at least at some gathering places for RVers.

Right now I am looking at this more from an investment or industry POV than the POV of a user. It also seems that selling them could be good retirement job, with the avalanche of boomers many with good pensions coming along.

Would you continue RVing if gas/diesel got to $5/gal? Could you keep it up? Could the lifestyle be modified to keep a lot of what is good, but adjust for greater operating costs?

Do most people pay cash, or are RVs mostly financed?

I know that for most of you operating costs are dwarfed by capital costs, but in my experience what causes people to hang up on a hobby is operating costs. Somehow it just makes a bigger splash in one's mind!

Anyway, I hope you will share your insights and ideas about this.

Ha
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 08:51 AM   #91
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Another thing no one has brought up I think you can use the interest and etc on your taxes as a second residence...at least you used to be able to.

We used to have a 25 1/2 ft travel trailer when the kids were younger we loved it we lived in it for a while as well, and it was fun to go to bed on one day and the next day wake up to different scenery but our indoors surrounding never changed. The 2 kids, a dog and bikes on the top of the suburban.... I still smile when I think of the fun and adventure we had.

We still go to the RV shows there amazing some of these motor homes cost more than some houses...it most definetly is a lifestyle choice a friend just bought a 5th wheel it has 3 tip outs and when you go in it looks like your in a small house right up to the big screen TV.... they bought it second hand and they are calling it there retirement home....of course at this time it is parked in there drive way.

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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 09:17 AM   #92
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by kathyet
We still go to the RV shows there amazing some of these motor homes cost more than some houses...it most definetly is a lifestyle choice a friend just bought a 5th wheel it has 3 tip outs and when you go in it looks like your in a small house right up to the big screen TV.... they bought it second hand and they are calling it there retirement home....of course at this time it is parked in there drive way.
Each to his own, and I know it is just a matter of tastes... but to me that sounds like an absolute NIGHTMARE!!! One non-negotiable requirement for my retirement home is for it to be permanently and firmly fixed on a solid foundation in a great neighborhood. For me, living in an RV as my retirement home would be about as appealing as living under a bridge. I would feel homeless!

So, all of you RV lovers - - have fun, but I won't be bidding on those RV's that you so love.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 11:55 AM   #93
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

It's all a matter of personal taste! For me the idea of spending the rest of my retired life in a fixed abode night after night no matter how nice the neighborhood is about as appealing as living under a bridge! We were SO HAPPY to be free of a fixed abode. I start to get antsy when we stay at one location more than two weeks, and by a month I am very anxious to move on.

Some folks have as strong a wanderlust as we do. We meet lots of our fellow gypsies at heart on the road - it's definitely a subculture. But I also know plenty of folks who need a firm fixed foundation for at least part of the year and think what we do is insane.

Audrey
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 01:01 PM   #94
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by audreyh1

Some folks have as strong a wanderlust as we do. We meet lots of our fellow gypsies at heart on the road - it's definitely a subculture. But I also know plenty of folks who need a firm fixed foundation for at least part of the year and think what we do is insane.
I respect that choice and agree it is highly personal. Of course, nothing need be forever either. If some day you decide to lay anchor well, you just do it.

Then there's the compromise we may consider one day: have a fixed home which is decent but considerably less in every way than what we consider ideal and can afford -- or even a rental. Use that as home base for some serious RVing such as 6 months a year. See how that goes, then either maintain the status quo or tilt one way or the other. No one answer fits all.

Meantime, I love hearing Audrey's and others' tales from the road.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 02:44 PM   #95
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

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Then there's the compromise we may consider one day: have a fixed home which is decent but considerably less in every way than what we consider ideal and can afford -- or even a rental. Use that as home base for some serious RVing such as 6 months a year. See how that goes, then either maintain the status quo or tilt one way or the other. No one answer fits all.
I'm with you Rich. That is the concept I'm presenting to DW. She loves the activities we have now and the biggest issue with getting her sold on the RV concept is assuring her that those activities can continue while we add RV'ing to the agenda.

"Yes dear, we'll still do our annual jazz weekend downtown. Yes dear, we'll still do a Canadian fly-in every year. Yes dear, we'll still go to our favorite American plan resort every summer. Yes dear, we'll followup with our plans for some international travel........" And on and on.

But, we'd also have an RV and spend numerous weeks traveling the country staying at federal and state parks. And we'll be able to get away for quick 2 - 3 day jaunts.

Based on reading here, reading other web sites and a couple of visits to local dealers, it's starting to look like a Class B or small trailer is going to be our best bet. Cost would be about the same as we'll need to buy a tow vehicle to go with the trailer.

I think I have DW swaying my way (as long as I stay consistent on NOT eliminating current activities), now it's down to figuring out storage as we absolutely don't have room at the house. Any comments on how advantageous it is to store indoors (expensive!) vs just paying to keep it outdoors (cheap)?

Also, I'm a little concerned about putting our kayaks on top of a Class B or trailer. Seems like a long way up there. Anyone doing this?

Also, the proverbial question....... how inconvenient is it for you Class B owners to break camp and go take a drive to tour an area you're staying in? And for you trailer owners, how tough is it to find parking at a mall or restaurant or wherever when you're pulling a trailer?

Trailer- Class B, Trailer-Class B, Trailer-Class B



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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 05:07 PM   #96
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by HaHa

Right now I am looking at this more from an investment or industry POV than the POV of a user. It also seems that selling them could be good retirement job, with the avalanche of boomers many with good pensions coming along.

Would you continue RVing if gas/diesel got to $5/gal? Could you keep it up? Could the lifestyle be modified to keep a lot of what is good, but adjust for greater operating costs?

Do most people pay cash, or are RVs mostly financed?

I know that for most of you operating costs are dwarfed by capital costs, but in my experience what causes people to hang up on a hobby is operating costs. Somehow it just makes a bigger splash in one's mind!

Anyway, I hope you will share your insights and ideas about this.

Ha
Right now we are staying in a 120-150 unit "trailer park" here in Florida, a few miles from where my parents once lived. It's a combination of approximately 100 sites that are rented to snow birds, Canadians, etc.-retires who come down here for approximately six months or so. Many leave their trailers here year round. They get sick of hauling them back and forth across the country, so after some years they just end up leaving then in the park. My rough guess is that 25%-35% of the sites are rented out year round. Retired folks lose a bit of their gypsiness over time and like to settle in one location, settle down to what they know and where they like it.

The other fifty sites are rented to daily or weekly folks. I dickered a bit and got our site here for $150 for the week. Normally it’s about $35/day (It's on the shoulder of the slow season.). It appears that long-term monthly rates in this park run between $300/mo-$600/mo. for site rental and water and internet service. Electricity is extra; you have to sign up with Florida Power. This appears (to me anyway) to be a mid-priced park for people.

Most of the folks here appear to be reasonably well off retirees, mostly professional folks that own a home up north somewhere and just spend the winter months here. I think this is quite typical in many of the trailer parks on the west coast of Florida—a low cost second home that is easily transportable if the mood or environment change radically. As I see it, the community in these places is often quite powerful: Folks get together each nite to talk, play cards or dominos (or drink), whatever. They all seem to do more active things together too: this particular park has a group of about twenty-thirty active bicyclers that go out together regularly and a smaller group of motorcycle/scooter owners. Each park is different I’m sure.

I’d say 20% of retired folks in this park own the larger Class A type motor homes which run $100K-$250K when new. Another large group (approx. 30%-40%) own trailers or fifth wheels which run about $20K-$60K or so, new. It APPEARS that those with newer ones take them home before Florida summer hits; but those with older ones just leave them permanently on the site, paying rent year round, not bothering to ever move them again. They just put them up for sale when done with them. Often times they put a little skirting around the bottom; maybe add a screened deck or bump out the living space in some fashion. If the park they are in won’t let them make the modifications they want, all they need to do is find another near by that will. Not a difficult process.

My guess is that the cost of fuel plays only a small role in the decision to purchase an RV. And while the larger Class A and Class C motor home sales may be seriously affected by gas prices soaring upward for a few months or even a year or two, my guess is that the majority of trailers and even a number of fifth wheelers never get more than a couple hundred miles from home base for their entire existence.

So, Ha, you should buy and manage a nice little retiree trailer park. Maybe a “nudist” one--where the ladies enjoy bocce ball :

















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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 05:20 PM   #97
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

I live near an upscale trailer park in Florida and I've never seen happier people .They have plenty of social activities and lots of opportunity for companionship.I could see myself doing some part time rental Rving.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 06:52 PM   #98
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Well, now we've gone and done it. Last December, a guy offered to buy my '86 Toyota truck for $2000. I was planning on buying a new one when we settled on the kind of trailer we were going to buy, and had looked seriously at the Trailor Manor, a hard sided, popup, at several RV shows in Sacramento. I figured I'd never get a better offer and sold the truck, and went out and bought a new Toyota Tacoma that can tow up to 6500 lbs. Then last week, a couple advertised a used model we were looking at. So today, after checking out the trailer, we offered the couple 20% less than they were asking, and settled for 10%. This pretty much came within our budget. They're bringing it over as soon as I can get the rest of my cash transferred out of my ING account. Wife retires in 3 months and we will be ready for bear, literally. Now, we got to figure out where to put the damn thing until the pile of shredded cedar gets moved to our borders.

Now I gotta to learn how to drive pulling and parking it.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 07:32 PM   #99
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

"Each to his own, and I know it is just a matter of tastes... but to me that sounds like an absolute NIGHTMARE!!! One non-negotiable requirement for my retirement home is for it to be permanently and firmly fixed on a solid foundation in a great neighborhood. For me, living in an RV as my retirement home would be about as appealing as living under a bridge. I would feel homeless!

So, all of you RV lovers - - have fun, but I won't be bidding on those RV's that you so love."
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Isn't it interesting how people will have such different opinions? We are fulltime RVers, and have lived nomadically for nearly 15 years now. Only extreme old age or major health problems would ever make us hang up the keys and settle in one place.

We like to say that our little home is small, but our neighborhood is really, really large. Our "front yard" has been everything from the Pacific Ocean lapping just feet from our window, to snow capped Rocky Mountains, or the Sonoran Desert in spring wildflower season, yet we have all the comforts of "home".

We have solar photovoltaic panels on the roof that provide electricity, so we are free of the need to be constantly hooked up to utilities. We have all the comforts, satellite TV, mobile satellite internet, Ekornes recliners, queen sized bed, full bath, side by side refrigerator/freezer.....there's no "roughing it" here.

In the past fifteen years, we have "lived" for various periods in forty or more states of the U.S., Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

This past month we have been volunteering at a national wildlife refuge down along the Mexican border in AZ, one of the premier birding spots........

For us, experiencing so many wonderful places, while still enjoying "home comforts", our own bed, our own space, etc., is the most wonderful thing in the world. To think that I would have to spend my whole retirement looking out the window at the same view would be unbearable.......

Life is a never ending adventure, with new experiences, new folks to meet, new foods to eat and places to go. It could never be boring.

As they say, each to their own.......but until we absolutely can't do it anymore, we'll continue to be the

LooseChickens

edited to add: we tow a small pickup truck with a cap behind the motorhome. We carry two sit on top kayaks on the pickup truck and have kayaked all over the country.

And so far as international travel. For September and October this year, our motorhome will be parked in the back yard of a friend's place in Scottsdale AZ while we take our one small carry on bag each, our unlimited Eurail passes, and take off for several months of adventure in Europe.

The old saying is "home is where you park it", yet even that can be modified, as sometimes the rig is parked and we are off to adventure somewhere else.
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?
Old 03-25-2007, 07:42 PM   #100
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Re: Anyone ever do the math on the economy of an RV vs. a motel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg

Right now we are staying in a 120-150 unit "trailer park" here in Florida...
And I had such high hopes for you guys.

Martha retires and where's the first place you head with your new-found freedom and spirit of adventure? - Branson followed by a trailer park in FL. Say it ain't so.

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