A Nature Walk With: Generation A. Cruising in an RV

 Carol Colburn and her husband, Bill, live in their RV which is handy for them because they are traveling to see the United States. The sites they have seen and they pictures they share make me wish I could do the same. They visited the Philippines not long ago. Now they are making plans to go global. To find out more, we are
going to take a nature walk with Generation A, Cruising in an RV.

01. Welcome to Nature Center Magazine. We are all anxious to learn a little bit about you. Tell us what your blog is all about.

When my husband Bill retired last January of 2009 (I had already been retired for 6 months), we decided to travel and we thought we could base ourselves somewhere in Asia or Eastern Europe, teaching English as a second language for part of the week and using the base to make weekend trips around it. We went to Taiwan and found out that we had to work 5 days a week to earn and keep a working visa. That would have given us very little time to travel!
So we came back to the US and decided to do RVing, covering North America first before we conquer the world! May 29 actually marked our third year anniversary of fulltime RVing. In February 2010 we met a blogger couple and I decided to start our very own blog. We had just met some fresh college graduates doing the same thing at Yosemite National Park. That’s how the title Generation Z came about. It is not about age, it is about lifestyle!

02. Everyone has their own unique story about what gave them the idea to start blogging. What is yours?

When I retired from the Philippine business landscape, I wanted do the things I was not able to do in my driven lifestyle: be a good wife, cook a little, teach a little, paint and write a little. Well, I had done everything except paint and write. When Bill and I married, the theme of our wedding was cruising. We rented a little cruise ship and held our ceremony and reception there, cruising around Lake Union in Seattle, Washington. 6 months after, he finally sold his business and retired like I did when we got married. So with our cruising in an RV, I now have the chance to write and paint our stories through words and pictures!

03. What do you enjoy about nature and what benefits do you derive from it?
Nature is what God gave us…the garden in which to enjoy life. I had always lived in Manila, Philippines. As I was raising my three girls as a single-parent, I hardly had the time to go back to nature…the hum of the birds, the roar of the seas, the color of the trees, the beauty of the flowers, the twinkle of the stars and the gleam of the moon and how different they look in different places. As we went around North America, I have come to know the Master Sculptor, the Master Painter, and the Master Gardener. And…camping is the lifestyle which keeps one close to nature and His creations almost 24x7!

04. Each of us has our own way of being with nature. Some people hike, some take pictures, and some climb trees. How do you experience nature?

First I stand in awe of a sight we happen to come across (like today when we were at the Stony Brook Natural Fish Ladders for the annual herring run in Brewster, Cape Cod, Massachusetts). Then a strong urge overcomes me. I want to capture the experience in a photo and then write about it so the feeling can be shared. When it’s too hot and the stream is invitingly cool, I may also jump in. When I feel energetic, I may climb a hill to get a better view of the surroundings. But most of the time, I take a picture of an awesome place and then ask Bill to take a picture of me in it! .

05. Tell us about the most exciting or scary nature related thing that ever happened to you.
There were a lot of places that excited me. But in Dempster Highway, on the way to the Arctic Circle on the Yukon, I asked Bill to stop every five minutes so that I could take a picture. (Please see http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com/2010/02/venturing-to-arctic-circle.html) It was a whole new and different world… the plant life gets smaller and shorter as you get nearer the Circle. I didn’t know how beautiful stark could be! But the scariest thing for me was the drive through Big Sur on an RV! (Please see http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com/2010/11/driving-down-west-coast-big-sur-and-san.html) Every five minutes I would ask Bill to please slow down because I always felt that we could fall into the Pacific Ocean at every turn! He almost just laughed me off until I cried!

06. If you were to take us on a nature tour of your area where would you take us first? Describe what we would see.

I have only been in the US for the past 8 years, 2 ½ years in Temple, Texas, 2 ½ years in Seattle, Washington, and now 3 years in every state! But I spent 55 years of my life in the Philippines. An archipelago of 7,107 islands, there are many excellent beaches, cool mountains, and trendy cities. But I would like to focus on the Top 3. The first is the longest navigable subterranean river in the whole world (and is now one of the 7 new wonders of the world) in Palawan in the Visayas Islands. (Please see http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com/2011/03/ola-marveling-at-palawans-beauty.html ) The second would undoubtedly be the centuries-old majestic and cool mountain terraces in Northern Luzon. (Please see http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com/2011/04/breathing-cool-philippine-mountain-air.html ) And the third would be the Chocolate Hills in Bohol, again in the Visayas Islands, inhabited by the tarsier, the world’s smallest monkey! (I have not written a post about Bohol)

07. If you could visit any nature spot in the world, what would it be? Tell us why. 

Victoria Falls and a safari in Africa, South Pole, Great Barrier Reef and the Outback in Australia, Amazon River in Brazil, Yellowknife (aurora borealis 335 days a year) and Niagara Falls in Canada, the Himalayas of Nepal, Yosemite and Yellowstone in the USA. I have been to the last two and the Niagara Falls. (I have written posts about Yosemite, http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com/2010/10/driving-down-west-coast-yosemite-and.html, and Yellowstone, http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com/2010/08/gushing-over-yellowstone.html, If I could go to any of the other 8, that will be awesome! Each one is at the top of its niche as a world natural wonder. There may be a thousand places to see before I die, but these are musts.

08. Each blogger has gained their own insight into writing a blog. What have you learned that you would like to share with other bloggers?

I have made some 135 posts in the past three years. I have learned that, just like any product, the product (in this case content) must be good and that you have to let people gain access to it easily (in this case, marketing in the Net). So I update my blog at least weekly (Fortunately, I have so much material that I sometimes write blogs that are a thousand words long with 15-20 pictures when I prefer shorter, 600-700 word posts with about 6-10 pictures). I also have learned to use Facebook and Entrecard to promote readership; as yet, I have not made use of Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.. And this is the first ever type of article marketing!
But as my husband and I have cruised North America in our RV, we have learned so much more about life and people! On our third year, the following thoughts lie heavily in my mind: my becoming an American, strengthening my young late-in-life marriage, and keeping healthy, while cruising in an RV. These are fast becoming the themes of threading the posts into a book.

09. Where can our readers find you? Give us the name and a link to your blog. If you have more than one to share, we would all like that too.

I just have one active blog whose title is ‘Generation A. Cruising in an RV’; the url is http://rvcruisinglifestyle.blogspot.com.
I also have an active Facebook page named BillnCarol Colborn and my email address is carolina.colborn@gmail.com.

10. Is there anything we have not discussed that you would like to add?

Our travel plans for next year (we complete North America in November this year) include beginning to tour Europe (we hope to complete it in the next three years). However, we will not be cruising with an RV there because the roads and RVs are small and, therefore, not comfortable for long trips. We plan to rent apartments in key cities and cover the surrounding areas from that base through road trips. There is more nature in Africa, South America, Asia, and Australia/New Zealand but we don’t intend to miss the natural beauty of Europe and simply focus on its man-made wonders, like we are doing while we RV in North America.

Carol, we thank you for taking a nature walk with us. My favorite spot that you visited was Alaska which is why the picture from you blog that is shown above is also a favorite. You and your husband are obviously having a good time and we look forward to sharing in all your travels.

Do you write a nature related blog and you'd like to be interviewed by Nature Center Magazine? Click the link and let us know who you are and that you'd like to be featured in a Nature Walk: Interview Me.