A goodbye salute to life as a Truckie

I’m really bad with goodbyes. I figured I’d get it over with ahead of time so that I will be able to enjoy my last few days on the road. (I don’t ACTUALLY leave until Sunday, but…) From the beautiful Newport Beach of Orange County, California… I typed this farewell to my summer of fun while surrounded by the serene ambiance of sand below me and waves crashing before me.

It’s strange to think that in less than one week’s time I’ll be back in Austin, Texas. For those who don’t know, I’m leaving the tour just a few days early since I am moving to New York City for my full-time job this September. This summer’s adventure has been just that, an adventure. There have been bumps and bruises along the way (from stacking and unstacking our hard-shell Samsonites, not doubt,) tired days and days I wished would never end. But all in all, I’m proud to call myself a “Truckie” and sad to be leaving that name behind. There are memories I will keep engrained in my senses for years to come – like the smell of the Truckster, and this high-pitched, fast laugh that resonates from John when something unexpected happens. I will miss turning heads when I drive down the street… some how I just don’t think my white Hyundai Elantra will elicite the same reaction.

There are things I would say I’ve become a bit of an expert at – like washing the front windshield, remembering to keep track of my receipts and to leave a thank you note. But there are some things, though almost three-months later, I still can’t get used to – like pumping gas into the trunk, ‘happily’ eating out every meal, and living out of a suitcase every day.

At the same time. I’m preparing myself for a transition period in my life. The Truckster travels conveniently mark the end of an era. Now 23, I suppose it’s time to ‘women’ up; it’s time to be an adult. I’m assuming it’s going to take determination to convince my full-time self that sitting behind a desk on your computer is a bit more normal than typing away while hundreds of miles of scenery pass by my passenger seat window. I hope my new office provides good coffee because this summer I’ve expanded my taste buds having experienced probably the very best AND the very worst American coffee vendors have to offer.

But happily, I enter this transition into the ‘real world’ with…

Steph with map

…a new found respect for our country


…respect for the daily grind (thanks to the amazingly dedicated HomeAway.com PR team)


…a new friend who I will dearly miss, but will never hesitate to call

(and never thought I’d say this one)


An obnoxiously obsessive love of the Wagon Queen Family Truckster.

Bye y’all and in the words of the man who saw an opportunity to create something incredible, and has brought more smiles to complete strangers this summer than he could ever imagine… as Gary Schneider, Mr. Wagon Queen Family Truckster himself wrote on the back of my favorite Truckie shirt when I asked for his autograph, “Keep on Truckin.’

Now, enough of that. Grab a tissue, get your head in the game, and watch this video of our STELLAR vacation rental in Anaheim, California! We’re hanging out here for tomorrow (BREAK DAY!) and Thursday we’re headed to San Diego!


Ready to take on Seattle with Jennifer Miner

Howdy Internet friends,

We rolled into Seattle this afternoon and just made a new friend, co-creator, writer and editor at The Vacation Gals, and luxury travel columnist at Suite101, who also contributes regularly to other sites such as Hybrid Mom…none-other-than, Mrs. Jennifer Miner. (Twitter: @JenniferMiner)

We’ve got a packed schedule this weekend and will be all over town. Keep your eyes peeled for the Truckster and watch my video of the rental to find out about additional sighting opportunities in & around Seattle…

I’ll be nice and recap:

Saturday – Truckster will be at SeaFair FanFest from 12-5 p.m. at the Seattle Center before the Torchlight Parade that evening. This will be a great opportunity to bring the family – and the camera – for your close-up with yours truly… and the Truckster!

Sunday – Come to the Columbia City Cinema for the 11 a.m. FREE showing of National Lampoon’s Vacation! See the Truckster, watch the movie – what could be better?! (If you can’t make the Sunday showing, the movie will also play – FREE – Saturday morning at 11 a.m. at the Columbia City Cinema… but the Truckster won’t be around until Sunday. Plan accordingly.)

After the showing, word has it, the Truckster might be making an appearance at Alki Beach in Seattle. I suggest you follow us on Twitter for more concrete, live updates on the Truckster’s whereabouts! (Twitter: @homeawaytrip) –cough, cough–

Monday – Tune-in to FOX KCPQ Channel 13 at 8:45 a.m. to wake-up with a live interview from our travel experts, Jennifer Miner and the Truckster!

See you at SeaFair tomorrow!