It's been a few months since our last show & I am already amazed that my blood pressure has been lower & more stable than it has been in the last 2 years. It hadn't occurred to me that the shows were contributing to my blood pressure being so unstable.
While contemplating retirement (from shows) I was reminded about a friend of ours many years ago who was also a vendor doing the woodcarving circuit. He unstable blood pressure & I remembered that once he gave up the shows his blood pressure stabilized so that his meds were able to keep it well controlled.
I knew we were both getting too old to deal with all the hard work & heavy lifting involved in doing shows but it is hard letting go of something that you enjoy. We started doing shows in 1995 & after 19 years I knew we needed to think about retiring but it was a tough decision.
What my life has been like the last few months. The beginning of June we left for the Pacific Northwest. We had some work done on our coach, went to an RV rally, spent a week in Portland & a week in Salem then off to Newport (on the coast) for a month (instead of our usual 2 months). When we leave Newport we will head back to Salem for about a week to attend the Elks Lodge annual picnic & see the things we missed & return to the places we loved.
Now we are contemplating where to go for August. One stop we want to make is Glacier National Park. After that we will fill in other stops to new places we haven't visited on the way back to New Mexico.
So, do I miss the shows...yes, because I loved having the opportunity to socialize (face to face) with fellow gourders & pyrographers. But now I am enjoying my life being more relaxed & having more fun.
I am still running the business but now it's at my own pace & it doesn't involve heavy lifting & long hard hours of setting up, working at a show & then breaking down.
One of the best things I've done during this trip was buying a recumbent trike. It is so much fun & I'm getting some exercise.
If you want to check out our escapades on our trips, please check out my personal blog.
8/8/14 update: we are currently in Salem, OR & having fun with friends. Monday we all leave heading in slightly different directions. We have set up our itinerary & will be heading to Glacier National Park....if the Rowena Fire in Oregon is under control & has not impacted on Interstate 84 traffic. We will also be stopping in Cheyenne, WY to stay at a working ranch...this should be interesting!