Most everyone has a dream. I inherited mine from my dad. I picked up the photograph of Dad and his last Winnebago. I sat, stared, and daydreamed at my desk.
Dad loved Airstream trailers, and big Chrysler tow cars. Every long weekend, or vacation, he would bring us kids to the high profile state parks and campgrounds on the shore. We would hike over from the tent areas to look over the Airstreams. Once or twice we found them gathering for one of the big treks. Dad loved the two-axled ones, the longer the better. I prefered the single axle Bambis, especially with the funky Internatial Travelalls as the tow rig.
When Dad retired, he found that,"Chrysler no longer makes Chryslers!" He discovered that a crew cab pickup rigged for towing would cost almost as much as the trailer. His loan officer informed him that, while Airstreams appreciated, used motorhome prices dropped like a rock. There was one on the repo lot. A deal was done, and Dad's dream ended.
Mine continued. I found my first, a twenty-seven foot front-bedroom Flying Cloud, on, of all places, EBay. She had been used, hard and often, by a family with three rambunctious boys. There were some soft areas in the floor, some rounded corners and obvious wear, but the deal was too good to pass. So I didn't! She was usable as-is, even the tires were good, but I parked her on the hardstand on my lakeside lot for restoration.
Here my lifelong enemy, Simon Brown, enters the story. Imagine a slice of pizza in your hand. The crust sits high on your thumb, the point droops off your fingers into deep water. An paved street runs along the outer edge of the crust, which represents a long granite ridgeline. Add a notch, blown in the ridge by my great-grandfather, for access, a dock on the point, built by my grandfather, and a concrete pad which grew from a tent platform to a trailer site over the years. You have a picture of the property. The narrow rocky strip wasn't suitable for building, wasn't worth much by itself. But access and a grandfathered-in dock, were worth millions to a developer like Brown. The struggle for ownership had lasted for generations. I'd personally tossed Simon through a hospice window when he tried to force Dad to sign a deed on his deathbed!
My wife sold real estate for the asshole. Mary was blonde and beautiful, smart, ambitious and successful, sexy and damn near insatiable. Too beautiful. Too ambitious. Too close to insatiable. We had two main problems: Sex and money!
Mary was great at her job. She listed and sold property like a house afire. She lorded her major triumphs over me, but her money was her money, so although I knew she did well, I never knew how well. I respected her, but she considered me a "damn slacker". I worked at the office of a storage facility I inheirited. She thought all I did was sit and wait to collect checks as they came in. I considered myself an author. Why else would I have a degree in English Literature? I had a unique cure for writer's block: when words wouldn't flow, I'd go out back and build another block of units. Success came slowly, but publishers' checks were beginning to arrive. About those other checks: one hundred units at seventy dollars per month. You do the math, Mary never did!
.... There is more of this story ...