We have names!

After careful consideration and having a bit of time with our truck and trailer, we have given them names!

Our 2011 Ford F-250 pickup is now known as Bessie. She is named after Diane’s Great-grandma Bessie May McClester Vale. Bessie was of Irish descent (McLaughlin and McClester). In the family archives, Diane’s Mom Betty wrote some biographical information on Bessie and Great-grandpa John Vale, Sr. The story goes that “John was traveling down the road in the farm area near Clinton, Pennsylvania when he was forced to take the side of the road to escape collision with a team of spirited horses being driven by what appeared to be an equally spirited young woman with red hair.” Later in the story, “If John was feeling adventurous, they would hitch up Bessie’s matched team and enjoy an invigorating and exciting race across the countryside with Bessie at the reins.” They married in 1899! Bessie also served as the business manager for John, who was a portrait artist. She would frequently tuck a hand-tooled leather portfolio beneath her arm and meet with potential clients (including Andrew Carnegie) to arrange for John’s next commissioned work.

Bessie May McClester Vale & John Webster Vale Sr – 50th Anniversary, 1949

Our truck’s “personality” is such that it is spirited with the turbo diesel engine. There are times when we’re on a rough road that she gives us an invigorating ride across the miles. Recently we took her on a 4-wheel drive adventure with Diane behind the reins on a forest service road in Pike National Forest. Bessie gave us an exciting trip up, over, down, and seemingly all around. She took to the trailer easily and pulls it up mountain passes and over boondocking terrain with very little effort. Since we purchased the truck on March 8, 2018, International Women’s Day, it seems fitting to honor Diane’s Great-grandma Bessie.

Our 2018 Northwood Nash 26N is now known as Tranquility. On July 20, 1969, the first lunar landing took place on the Sea of Tranquility on our beautiful Moon where the first human footprints were made by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin. We both recall this spectacular event as we nestled around living room TVs in our childhood homes with our parents and siblings. While visiting the Great Sand Dunes National Park on September 21, 2012,  we patiently waited as the park ranger set up a powerful telescope one evening and pointed the scope at the moon, focusing on the Sea of Tranquility. It was a quiet night except for the gasps and comments of those peeking through the telescope.

Superimposed Super Moon over Great Sand Dunes by DianeFeltPhotography.com

We anticipate many incredible adventures led by Bessie pulling Tranquility. Earlier this week, they took us to a very tranquil location where we set-up camp without any hookups (it’s called dry camping or boondocking). The view was stunning during the day with the snow-capped mountains in the distance, at twilight with gorgeous sunsets, and in the dark of night with the star-studded sky.

Spirited and tranquil all in one package. Happy Trails lie ahead! We anticipate launching to full-time RVing status by the end of July.