We have an even BIGGER ANNOUNCEMENT!
That's right, we are getting ready to hit the road in our Thor Hurricane Motorhome named Hermione! Hiho Silver is the name of our 2018 4-door Jeep Wrangler and she is ready to start hitting the trails.
As of January 1, 2020. k. Norwood Portraiture officially closed its door to our wedding and portrait clients in anticipation of beginning our new life on the road. Initially we were just going to go to places that were within 200 miles of a major airport so that Robert could commute to DFW and pick up his international flights to South America and Hong Kong, but little did we know that the world situation would change so much in just a few short months.
At the end of February, 2020 we traveled to Cape Town, South Africa with friends from California. We spent several days there taking in the sights, enjoying a couple of the local wineries and just enjoying our time together. We then met up with a big group of friends from Texas School for our African Safari which was just about a week long. I promise to include some of our highlights from South Africa and the beautiful lodge that we were in while we were there.
After a mind-blowing experience in South Africa, it was time to travel home but while still in the air, the FA came over to give Robert some difficult news. Delta was going to be shutting down all international flights within three days and we knew it would just be a matter of time before American Airlines followed up to do the same. This would be life-changing news for not only us but so many people that we knew.
COVID-19 was spreading and became a pandemic and the world as we knew it changed. American Airlines announced that they would be giving permanent leaves to all pilots 63 years and older and we had 4 days to make a decision. Robert had approximately 18 months left before we were planning for him to retire, so we needed to carefully weigh our options and after a couple days of going back in forth and much angst on my part, we made the decision to retire early.
Once the decision was made, it was time to kick it into high gear and get the downsizing started. We have spent the last 4 months prepping the RV, getting rid of furniture and non essentials, packing up what we wanted to keep to go to storage and saying goodbye to our old life!
It has been a turbulent couple of months; mainly because of COVID-19 and all the crap that has gone along with it. So far, only one person in our family has been diagnosed with it and he recovered quite well. We have focused our efforts on remaining as positive as possible, with one goal ahead of us. Be in the RV by the end of July and thankfully, we made it.
In a large way, the pandemic changed our lives but not in a bad way. The pandemic taught us to rely on each other, to take care of the 'more important things' and to enjoy our family time safely. We learned what we could live without and what was essential for both of us to be healthy mentally. Of course, we missed out on trips that we had planned with other friends, Scotland, Iceland and a Boston cruise but those can be re-scheduled. Our friends who are small business owners were hit much harder and we are praying that their businesses will pick back up as time moves on.
Kathy Norwood, M. Photog., Cr. Photog, CPP