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We are a married couple and in our late 50's and we have been caravanning for over 24 years, a week here, a month there, but always with a home to retreat to during the winter.
Over the years we have planned to make these shorter trips, our way of life when we retire. However, after Simon had series of operations for arthritis on both shoulders, the plans either had to be shelved or acted upon. In the end, it was the specialist in Bournemouth Hospital, who made our minds up for us. Simon's right shoulder was still very painful and when in the consulting room, he said that we really need to let it rest for a few months, rather than operate so soon. At this, we told him of our dreams. It was decided that we would see him in 12 months.
In July 2014, we took the plunge and, put the house on the market. We lived on the drive in the caravan whilst the very quick sale went through, then, acting on the years of discussion, a fair amount of planning and shed loads of trepidation, we finally sold our house and became Nomads, visiting all those places we have often talked about and wished to explore.
FAQ'sBelow you can find the answers to some of the questions and comments we receive and the answers we give.
Brave is an interesting word to describe what we are doing, personally I do not think it's brave, as we are just following a path that was planned over many years but, for some it would be a brave thing to do. Bravery is defined as boldness and courage and while we took a bold step when we sold our house to realise the cash to do this, I don't feel that we were brave
As I said in the previous paragraph, We sold the house. Not only that but we sold it for substantially more than the going rate suggested by the Estate Agent
That's quite an easy question to answer and it categorically No, not at the moment. Who knows what will happen in the future. We live our life on a let's see what happens basis. Vague plans are posted here on the website under the Countries Visited menu item but plans are made to be changed as they have this year (2018) where we will be returning to the UK as we believe that Julia is suffering from Hypothyroidism, which needs to be sorted our. The plans we had, to go to Norway from Greece have been postponed until 2019
This is not an easy question to answer.
We are not foolhardy and plans to avoid possible areas of conflict are adhered to. On the road, when driving, the state of some of the roads we encounter along with local driving habits, pedestrians and possible corruption and arrest as we found in Albania and Montenegro, have to be dealt with as you travel through the countries concerned.
The most worried I have been was driving through Albania, knowing that there was something very wrong with the hitch and breaks on the caravan.
None of the things that have worried either of us have been life threatening
In some peoples minds yes, however we still have to spend time cleaning, maintaining and repairing the car and the caravan, planning routes and driving. Over the first 3 years alone we covered approximately in total, and towing the caravan. We have spent time learning as we go, finding out about the local history of the places we visit and then visiting Archaeological sites, castles and churches as we go. We then spend the evenings writing the blogs, converting photographs in to more manageable sizes for the internet, uploading photographs and content for you to read. This, for us is hard work and it often funds me tapping away on the computer until the wee small hours.
This is an idea which Julia and I have been toying with over the last few years and, whilst there are so many travel guides for every country we go to, with suggestions of what to eat, drink, visit and experience, I feel to add to them would be inappropriate and even condescending so the books we will write over the next couple of years will be our story. Factual and sometimes humorous accounts of our travels through the different parts of the continent and beyond. They will be available for a small cost which will hopefully pay for a glass of wine or two.
We are nomads and travel where the whim takes us, however, there are times when we have to call on help. Our Support Team of mechanics are supplied by Caravan Servicing 4U an independent company located in the wilds of the Dorset Countryside. Their mechanics are the best we have come across in our travels and experience and would never hesitate to recommend them to any one looking for a reliable and efficient mobile workshop.
Our first point of call is usually by email to Sue a Director of the company who then sources the requested information from the mechanics. When the breaks failed on the caravan after applying some abuse in the Pyrenees and in the mountains of central Italy, they sent out the required items to Sicily for a local mechanic to fit.
About The Website
The Thomson's Travel and Thomson's Travels
An European Travel Blog, offering invaluable insights for the ardent caravan enthusiast and a personal website written to chronicle the travels of Simon and Julia Thomson as we saunter around the EU and beyond.
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Thomson's Travels supporting Charity
I have removed all adverts from the website. Instead we have decided to support Forest Holme and try and raise money through a JustGiving page. The Forest Holme link will be viewed by everyone.
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