With life as empty nesters looming, we googled “empty nest” and an ad for an Alzheimer’s patch popped up. Hoping to have a lot of life to live before needing one of those, we set out on a journey to see America and visit family and friends — a victory lap of sorts — to celebrate that our kids were grown and successfully off on their own.
Going Gypsy: One Couple’s Adventure from Empty Nest to No Nest at All chronicles the explorations and escapades that we encountered along the way. It isn’t a self-help or how-to book; it’s a story, a tale of rediscovering that couple who fell in love all those years ago, before our children came into our lives, then grew up and left us, as they should.
Of course, we hit a few snags here and there, like this time just after purchasing a beat-up old motorhome that we named BAMF on eBay:
(Excerpt from Going Gypsy: One Couple’s Adventure from Empty Nest to No Nest at All, by David and Veronica James, available from Skyhorse Publishing, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Indiebound, and everywhere books are sold)
David was dealing with the outside stuff—replacing screws, tightening belts, and talking to mechanics. He would slide out from under our new rolling house covered in grease, grime, blood, and the waterproof caulk he was using to seal everything in his path. He was in hog heaven.
I was relieved that he was happy outside, where his bull-in-a-china-shop tendencies would do less harm.
But not for long.
We had ownership of our new toy just one day when the bull charged inside and broke the main overhead light fixture with a broom handle. It wasn’t a major deal, nothing that a skillfully placed dab of superglue couldn’t fix, and I am a master supergluer. So we agreed that I would run over to the store for some glue while David promised to confine his work to the exterior of the RV. That way I could get the fixture fixed and things more organized indoors before the bull stampeded again. No telling what other broom handle–like destructive implements could be lurking about.
I believe that David’s tendency to break things and injure himself is not because he is clumsy. He’s not. My theory is that it stems from the way he grew so tall, so fast, as a child. He never quite figured out his proportion to the world around him. According to family lore, when he was in his thirteenth year, he was so skinny that his hands looked like olives on the end of toothpicks. It’s a challenge to overcome dimensions like that.
Back from my errand, with a sack of hardware goodies in hand, I opened the RV door to find David standing in the middle of the kitchen area, messing with the overhead light fixture. To add a little spice to the mix, the light was on. The man will never learn about electricity.
“I found some superglue.”
“I thought we agreed I would fix that.”
“But I found some glue, so I figured . . .”
“Well, turn the light off. You’re going to electrocute yourself.”
“Will you please just go outside?” I was trying really hard to keep my cool.
“Dammit! Stop saying you can’t and just go outside!”
That was when I noticed the shreds of paper towel attached to his free hand and a few tatters clinging around the corners of his mouth. His other hand was space-age-polymer-bonded to the overhead light fixture, which was now permanently secured in the ON position.
Huge thanks to Mike and Luci for allowing us to share on 1000 Fights! Fight on guys – we love ya!
David and Veronica James (aka The GypsyNesters)