Thursday, May 12, 2011


This is the 2000 Chinook Concourse I was hoping to buy, the first Concourse to catch my eye. The vehicle initially listed at $25000, and though it was a stretch for me to buy it, I nonetheless had been in touch with the owner since late 2010. I could not fathom why this vehicle was not selling if it was in the condition it appeared in the photographs the owner sent to me. Spotless. It was May before I had a chance to visit the seller and inspect the motorhome, and I did so by combo-ing it with a trip in the Toyota Chinook to Key West to visit my friend Randy, and have a great ropa vieja at El Siboney.

It was a blast driving the Toyota Chinook around Key West as this flat landmark is the perfect arena for an aging four cylinder motorhome, and its throwback style was complimented by the place. While I was boondocking there I experienced some of the challenges faced by the freeloaders of Key West: direct sunlight & police surveillance. I felt like a crab on the beach at low tide. On my way out of town it was time to meet the seller of the Concourse, and only then did I discover why this vehicle had not yet sold.

First of all it was not on Key West but Geiger Key, so not heaps of drive-by traffic. None at all in fact. Secondly, the listing was on an RV search site, not Craigslist, so fewer eyeballs. Then, a week before I arrived, the seller listed the vehicle on CL and dropped the price to $23500. Bingo: offers. By the time I made an appointment the seller told me he had a buyer flying in from New York the very next day who was prepared to buy it if it met expectations. I decided to visit anyway to learn what I could about the Concourse model, and be first in line if the buyer balked. He didn't. He saw what I saw and bought it on the spot. Meanwhile I had the scent of the good life on six wheels and there was no looking back - the hunt was on for another Concourse!

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