RV Travel & Soap During COVID-19

The rules and advice for traveling the U.S.A. in your RV this spring are about as varied as a kitchen sink. Depending on where you are or where you want to be, the rules are ever-changing and it can be complicated.

Most RVers have found a safe place to hitch up and wait it out. If you are on the road traveling from state to state, the rules of “shelter in place” change depending on the State in which you are camping; and State park campgrounds (with their washrooms, toilets, and dump stations) are closed in many States.

We are finding that most RVers are simply “staying put” and if lucky, have done so in a State that is now opening up. Here’s the list of States as of May 4, 2020.

The CDC publishes a website with the latest information about Coronavirus and Travel in the United States. Because RV travelers have to make frequent stops for food, bathrooms, or overnight campsites that we become diligent about hand washing. They advise that everyone use soap and water and wash vigorously for at least 20 minutes after being in a public place.

Alternatively,  use a hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol. But do you know why we use soap for washing? 

Germs are microbes, and they are everywhere. In the air, soil, water and every surface, including our own body. Most of these microbes are harmless, and some are even good for us. We have microbes in our stomach and intestines, and it’s these “good” microbes that break down the food that we eat and keep us healthy.

Soap is a simple concoction of fat, water, and salt. Recorded history of soap goes back to 2800 B.C. when people used animal fats, food ash and water to wash natural wool and cotton before weaving it into cloth. We think that the early Egyptians were first to use soap for treating disease and personal washing, and the early Romans made it part of their cleaning rituals.

Soap is still soap — the ingredients are basically the same, just refined and more pure.

Soap doesn’t kill germs, it removes them. Fat and water don’t mix (as I’m sure you’ve observed in your kitchen sink). But soap binds fat and water together and when you rinse, the soap carries away the muck, paint, grease, dirt, mud, germs, and yes, the coronavirus microbe with the water. The more lather you work up, the better the soap carries stuff away. The harder you rub your hands together, the more lather you work up, and the friction it creates leaves hands clean. 

But you aren’t off the hook yet. After a good hand scrub, check your fingernails. Best to keep a fingernail cleaner near all RV sinks and use them to scrape any other dirt out from under them. Wish a wash and scrape, you can be certain you’ve had a successful cleansing.

St. Patrick’s Day on the Treasure Coast

St. Patrick’s Day in America is a remembrance of the most famous Irish legend, who died on March 17 sometime around the year 492. It’s largely a celebration of the Irish-American culture in the United States. Americans love to wear the green, revel in all things Irish. and of course quaff green beer!

What you may not know is that all this Irish merry-making started in Boston, Massachusetts and repeats itself largely in the United States alone. In Ireland, it’s a traditional day of solemnity with Catholics attending church in the morning and gathering for modest feasts in the afternoon. No parades, no green-tinted foods and no “wearing of the green.” In Ireland, blue is the traditional color associated with Ireland’s patron saint.

Parades, concerts, and events that likely have ole St. Patrick rolling in his grave keep his memory alive not just in Ireland but especially in America, and even along the Treasure Coast. 

St. Patrick’s Day events along the Treasure Coast range from parades to pub crawls and festivals for the kids. Here are a few nearby:

Saturday, March 14, 2:00 – 11:00 PM
Downtown Fort Pierce Pubs and Play
A Block Party in downtown Fort Pierce will shut down 2nd Street to celebrate the luck of the Irish. Live music on stage, street pubs, and kid’s area for the wee ones.

Sunday, March 15, 2:00  – 4:00 PM
St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Festival
The parade route begins at Church Street and Indian River Drive and moves southbound along Indian River Drive to Jensen Beach Blvd. then continues west through downtown Jensen Beach to Pineapple Avenue. Presented by Mulligan’s Beach House Bar & Grill and organized by the Jensen Beach Chamber of Commerce. www.jbstpatricksparade.com

Tuesday, March 17, 6:30 – 10:00 PM
St. Patrick’s Day with the Prestage Brothers
Real Swamp Music with a Twist of the Irish!

Lastly, for all of us who are, or pretending to be, Irish this month, a list of Irish Bars Near Us.

RV Humor Just Comes with the Territory

Life in an RV Park or Campground requires a sense of humor… otherwise we’d all go mad.

In 2016, Roverpass, makers of a reservation system for RV Campgrounds, had a little fun with a “true story” contest with the RV Humor Facebook group for those who appreciate the humorous side of living in a small metal house on wheels.

We thought you’d enjoy a “reader’s digest” version from the winning entries (or read the stories here).

Kevin’s recollection of an early spring canoe trip down a river in the Ozark Mountains when someone in the boat yelled “hornets” and, in turn, Kevin jumped out of the canoe into freezing water. Did someone see a real hornet’s nest or just a clump of wet leaves in an overhang along the bank? We’ll never know.

Jim, a Navy guy stationed in Scotland in the ’70s, recalls taking a VW camper to explore the Scottish Highlands. They arrived in the dark of night and pulled into a rock quarry for the night. Next morning, doing what we all do first thing, Jim was about to step off a 100 foot cliff to water below. Good enough, but there’s more: a fish story, without fish, for a very peculiar reason!

Debbie’s hilarious story about having one of the first-ever pop-up campers of the ’60s and the endless problems and embarrassment of setting it up, to the amusement of everyone else in the park. At the end, she sells the camper at a cheap price, but doesn’t explain to buyer exactly why. 

Roverpass has a good collection of illustrated RV jokes too. Hint: Knock knock. Who’s there? RV. RV who? RV there yet? Want more?

There’s something about the RV lifestyle that calls for having a sense of humor. Do you have a funny story to share? Send it to info@floridaysrvpark.com along with your name and any relevant photos and we’ll share them with friends and fans of Floridays.

South Florida Loves Art Festivals!

The highlight of the year for our small town of Hobe Sound along Florida’s Treasure Coast is the annual Festival of the Arts. On the first weekend in February, amazing artwork, crafts, and culinary delights line Old Dixie Highway for a 2-day affair that rivals similar festivals all over Florida during high season.

Hobe Sound’s Festival of the Arts

If you missed Hobe Sound’s Art Festival, you can still find one within a day’s drive:

Sarasota, 8-9 February
Coconut Point, 15-16 February
Stuart, 22-23 February
Ft. Lauderdale, 7-8 March
Palm Beach Gardens, 14-15 March
Coral Springs, 21-22 March

See all Florida Art Fest Events.

Most shows have a nice balance of fine art and crafts, but if you prefer “craft fairs only” Howard Alan Events, the event planner for Hobe Sound’s annual festival, will delight your senses and help you find that special trinket, live plant, or home made health and beauty product. 

See Dates for All Florida Craft Festivals

And for Art enthusiasts in our own backyard who still can’t get too much eye-candy for one month, check out ArtsFest (sponsored by the Arts Foundation of Martin County) this coming Saturday and Sunday in Stuart.

Boat Parades Near Floridays

There’s nothing like a beautiful boat parade to put south Floridians into the Christmas spirit. It just so happens that Hobe Sound is fairly equal distance to boat parade in Martin County to the north, and Palm Beach County to the south.

Christmas fun waterside

North Boat Parade – Martin County

The Annual Martin County Boat Parade is Saturday, December 8, beginning at the Jensen Beach Causeway at 6:00 PM. The Parade route will  proceed by Sandsprit Park, into the Manatee Pocket, and ending at the Twisted Tuna Restaurant around 8:00 PM where the winners will be announced.

South Boat Parade – Palm Beach County

The 25th Annual Palm Beach Holiday Boat Parade is December 7, led by a Zambelli traveling fireworks display that navigates up the Intracoastal Waterway from North Palm Beach to the Jupiter Inlet Lighthouse. Sit and see the parade from Juno Park, Burt Reynolds Park, Waterway Park, Sawfish Bay Park, Jupiter Riverwalk, Harbourside Place and Lighthouse Park.