GOING TO PICK UP OUR AIRSTREAM AT NORTH TRAIL RV CENTER IN FT. MYERS, FLORIDA
This past Friday we packed up the truck and the dog for a 9-hour drive south to Ft. Myers, FL. We were on our way to pick up our very first RV trailer, and a dream come true - a 2019 22’ Airstream Sport!!
When we lived in California 8 years ago, we fell in love with the idea of traveling the coast in an Airstream, like so many other people do. We were so excited to finally take the plunge and invest in such a beautiful, well-made travel trailer!
The entire purchasing experience with North Trail RV Center in Ft. Myers was a breeze, from start to finish. Our salesman, Derek, was always available to answer our questions prior to our road trip, and the financing manager was quick and efficient.
When we finally arrived to the RV center, we were welcomed by friendly, patient, and knowledgeable staff. They had our Airstream all set up and ready for orientation :) Matthew took us through our new ‘Stream, inside and out, top to bottom. We are fast learners so that part only took about an hour (plus I videotaped most of what he showed us for references later!). We also had to get some essentials at the RV store, sign a lot of papers, and have our truck hooked up with the necessary towing equipment so we were there for about 3-4 hours total.
Honestly, there is a LOT to learn as first-time RV owners. A LOT. We probably looked like deer in headlights the whole time. When we mentioned that it was a little overwhelming, Derek quipped that consuming all this information at first is “like drinking water from a fire hose.”
When we finally pulled away from the RV Center, we were pretty nervous. We couldn’t tell if we were excited or scared, ha! Here we were, on our own, with a pricey tiny home attached to our 2006 Ford F-150. I guess we were scared AND excited!
A few days before our trip I’d made arrangements to leave Grover at Happy Paws Ranch near the RV center, just for the day while we signed all our papers and everything. We went to pick him up from daycare with the Airstream in tow, and spotted a campground nearby! This was HEAVEN SENT because we’d spent HOURS previously searching online for campgrounds or RV sites with availability in that area. We wanted to be able to stay that night and drive 9 hours home the next day well-rested. Being that it was a Saturday in the Summer, we were having no luck with availability, so seeing Seminole RV & Campground and finding out they had a spot for us was SUCH a blessing!
First lesson learned - plan ahead to make reservations at a campsite, especially if you want full hook-ups! That means we could hook up our electric, water, and sewer to the campgrounds facilities, rather than being completely off-grid. We DEFINITELY wanted that for our first weekend with the Airstream. For the first night, we didn’t mess with the black tanks (sewer hook up) and we used the bathrooms at the campsite.
OUR FIRST NIGHT IN THE AIRSTREAM!
The feeling of pulling into our campsite at Seminole Campground was SO freeing. It is the coolest thing to know you’re carrying a small home with you! We tied Grover to the provided picnic table with some toys while we got to work unhooking the beast from the truck to set up for the night. As we were consulting the videos I’d taken from our walk-through earlier, a woman walked over from a neighboring campsite. She said with a smile, “You can always tell the newbies!” We were so thankful for Mary (who had been living there for 5 years!) because she helped us with some of the details we weren’t sure about. We made mental notes of things we would have to add to our list for travel - a ball lock, stoppers for behind the wheels, a leveler.
We got to know our little traveling home pretty quickly! It was so refreshing to take a shower in the Airstream after sweating all day. The windows provided plenty of natural light until nightfall. We walked Grover around the nearby trails, and returned to our campsite just in time to relax with a cold beverage under our awning while the rain started to fall. When the rain got too heavy, we decided to go inside and make our first dinner in the Airstream! We put some music on the Bluetooth speakers, and made chicken and veggies. It was so easy to use the gas stove, and the refrigerator had kept our groceries nice and chilled.
We were seriously amazed at how COMFORTABLE we felt in the Airstream. With two large people (Ben is 6’4” and I’m 5’10”) and a large dog (65lbs Bluetick hound) we did not feel cramped at all. The bed is even wide and long enough for our large bodies!
Seminole Campground was kept very nice and had little walking trails and pet exercise areas that came in super handy. The people we met there were SO nice and helpful! There were a couple other Airstreams in the park, and it’s so neat to be part of the community now. They were telling us about little perks you can get if you join the official “Airstream club” so we’re going to have to look into that!
We slept like babies for our first night in the Airstream. The AC was cold, our bed was comfy and we blared our white noise sleep machine app over the Bluetooth speakers. By the time we woke up and got ready to leave the campground the next morning, we felt well-rested and much more confident with our trailer.
Where is the next trip? We are thinking of heading to Wrightsville Beach so I can do some work up there in a couple weeks. We have ideas to go to Asheville this Fall to see the leaves change color, scoot up to Nashville and check that city out finally, hit up some concerts and football games in Atlanta or Charlotte - the possibilities are exciting!!
We’ll keep ya’ll updated on our travels and uploading a vlog soon, but please feel free to ask any questions or let us know what you want to see more of!
Also if you'd like to see our video documentation of our first night in the Airstream -
Check out this video made by SCHANEN! Our videos are usually made by Ben so don’t expect anything fancy :)