Never say never is my new mantra! If you had told me 50 years ago, or even 10, that we would travel across the states in a trailer, I’d have belly-laughed. I’ll admit that in the last couple of years we had “entertained” the idea of purchasing an Airstream for our first cross country trip. However, after sticker shock and reality checking, we instead set out in my Prius (really practical, you might say) for our 5-week adventure.
So, who or what is Silver Streak? She is the vintage (as in 1972) Airstream “Land Yacht” we purchased sight unseen from friends of our daughter, Emily, and son-in-law, Andy in Seattle. In late June, we got a call from Emily saying, “we know you’ve given up on the Airstream idea, but our friends are moving to London and have to sell their Airstream and the car that tows it – just thought I’d mention it…” Of course she sent a video, inside and out and from all angles and we were hooked. Andy spent several hours with the owner going over her personality, the ins and outs; for good measure, they took it camping for a weekend with baby Connor followed by another eager tester, older daughter, Carrie, her husband, Phil, and 2-year-old Greg. All proclaimed she would be a great buy and loving new member of the family. So, what could innocent loving parents do but make an offer!
We haven’t looked back! Labor Day found us flying to Denver for our annual visit to Steamboat Springs with two other couples, driving to Ketchum, Idaho via Jackson, Wyoming for Ron’s annual “men’s outing”. That left me to fly to Seattle to spend 5 days both babysitting for Greg (mom and dad took an anniversary weekend away) and to help with baby Connor whose mom was traveling for a few days. Ron appeared the day before we needed to begin our travels home (time sensitive because of a business dinner in Aspen and opening night of our wonderful Portland Symphony Orchestra). Andy met Ron at the airport and drove him directly to the storage unit for the Airstream – total emersion was the best way to commit! After learning the ropes of hooking up and feeling for the first time the impact of towing (and making wide right-hand turns), Andy and Ron sent word they were about to arrive in front of Carrie and Phil’s house so we could go out there and stand in 3 adjacent car spaces! The rest of the afternoon was spent going over again the pre-tow, the tow, and the post-tow procedures, equipping and provisioning, and then just mustering up courage for our early morning departure. The kids were great, very helpful and loving as we pulled of North 48th Street, Seattle, on Monday, September 15, 2014! Ron at the wheel, Sally almost immediately warning of a wider turn onto Meridian – alas, not soon enough and over the curb we went. However, nothing damaged other than our egos and off we lumbered to 50th and then on to I-5 South. Our adventure had begun!!!