"World Citizen" life suits Ingersoll man
Ed Lonsbary is putting his wandering feet to rest for at
least a couple of months.
The devoted RVer has recently come home to Ingersoll,
Ontario, Canada to
visit family after a two-year, 20 day trek across Canada and the
United States, a total of 28,022 miles with his wife, Patty Lonsbary.
"I'm a wandering guy at heart," Lonsbary said. "I don't need
brick and mortar anymore." The 62-year-old Canadian said he can identify with what his idol
and Texas neighbor, Willie Nelson...who says.
"The only time he feels free, is when he's moving,"
Ed and Patty Lonsbary launched their
entrepreneurial specialty travel business in 1999, when they
started Private Motor Coach Inc.
privatemotorcoach.com offering to give
people suffering from wanderlust, including medical and
senior citizens, a chance to go "Anywhere-Anytime" in
the comfort and luxury of their Prevost XL bus conversion motorcoach,
they affectionately call "Dolly's Pride".
Worth noting is Lonsbary is so attached to his motor home he sometimes
refers to it as his other "girlfriend."
But life hasn't always been so carefree for the couple.
Lonsbary, who was born in Salford, Ontario, and is a farm
boy at heart, migrated to the USA in 1978 and has worked as
a design engineer, as well as in sales and marketing in Corporate America for 25 years.
Some of his notable companies are Jacuzzi, DuPont, Dow Chemical and Bayer,
His wife Patty had worked as writer, a
producer and host for radio
station, KQV in Pittsburgh, PA, worked in
women's shelters as an executive director and was a fundraiser and consultant for several
large organizations, notably Ketchum and the American Cancer
About three years ago, Lonsbary started to notice his Texas
tour bus business slowing down due to the US recession and his wife was experiencing
burnout from her job in the non-profit sector.
"I said that's it, we're selling out and going on the road!" Lonsbary said.
To that end, they sold their Texas ranch and
all its contents in the spring of 2007, including finding a
good home for their pet Corgi dog, Rusty; filled six large
trunks with their personal keep sake possessions and put the
trunks in storage in Grandma's garage in Greensburg, PA.
"We drove away July 4 2007," he said. "We left on Independence
Day and ended our trip in Independence, MO, on July 24,
Lonsbary says "sounds kind of prophetic. Maybe there is a
Their trip took them from Texas,
deep south to the Louisiana bayous, to the easternmost parts of
Quebec and the Gaspé Peninsula, back through Canada and the
US west to Victoria, B.C., then south to San Diego and
really everywhere in-between, except portions of the US south east.
As is Lonsbary's nature, he keep track of the route on a
large USA map
on his coach wall.
You can see the map here: Lonsbary laughs, his wife
Patty too, as all roads seem to run by Suzie's, there
daughter, door in St. Louis, MO.
Selected highlights included Patty interviewing an alligator
fisherman in the bayou swamps of south Louisiana, visiting the Great Lakes Shipwreck Museum,
at Whitefish Point Light Station, which
features the Edmund Fitzgerald artifacts, joining the
circus, in Florence, OR and five days at the
honeymoon RV suite site at Rogers Rock State Park, Lake
George, New York. Lonsbary says you can see all the
adventures in his wife's blog, "Did Someone Say RV Road Trip?"
glotours.blogspot.com which will
eventually be published (2012) in a tell all "Be Free, Be
Happy" travel book.
on board electric generator, plenty of food and water, TV and
internet, a comfortable Temper Pedic bed, they often
"boon docked," an RV term for dry camping, for days at a
time. With their tow car, Timmy, they were free to explore
in more detail as they could leave the motorcoach parked. "We were running all the time, and we saw and
experienced so much, it was fantastic," he said.
You can see Dolly and Timmy hooked up
While the trip was meant to be "an
RV boot camp" for his wife
for a future expedition to South and Central America,
Lonsbary acknowledged his wife has a slightly different nature than
"She's more of a brick and mortar person," he said. "I'm more a
After two years plus on the road and ready for a
break, Patty accepted an interim job working as VP of
Marketing and Development at a women's shelter, Sheffield
Place in Kansas City, MO., which put a temporary halt to
their travel plans. Still it was a chance for Lonsbary to
begin planning his next trip to Central and South America.
It was during that time Patty was approached by UNICEF and
asked to take a job as an international fundraiser based in
Geneva, Switzerland where she would have world wide
responsibly for major gifts and travel frequently.
The job offer, which Patty happily accepted, put a temporary hiatus on the
South American RV trip while the couple resettles to Geneva
and sets up a home. "I was quite disappointed I couldn't go
to South America," Lonsbary said. "But we're both over the
moon excited about moving to Europe, especially Switzerland. "She's going to be fantastic -- she's a huge talent.",
while college, Lonsbary had backpacked for a 100 days across Europe in the summer of 1971 and
said he's thrilled to be going back.
And it hasn't taken Lonsbary long to come up with a new way
to scratch his itchy foot.
After a few months with his wife in Geneva, helping her get
settled, Lonsbary plans
to set up his RV travel business in Europe and maybe even
"My dream is to go to China from Geneva, by RV" he said.
As for the second love of his life, his RV,
affectionately called "Dolly's Pride" well it's not going
with them. "I can't ship her over; it costs too much money,"
he said. But she will be waiting for him in her warm garage
in Ohio. I'm sure he will visit and take her for a spin.
Finally, Lonsbary say's "Thanks Mom, you instilled in me the love and adventure of travel; you didn't
get to go far, but you are always riding with me in spirit".
Our motto is... "Anywhere