Verbatim Column

Where’s the first destination you have in mind when travel restrictions are lifted?

During the global pandemic and requirements to shelter-in-place/lockdown/quarantine, some of us have wondered what it will be like to roam from home, step out into the world, reconnect live and in person with those we have missed. Here’s an assortment of answers from our colleagues who are very well ready to “get out of town.”  From the simple to the extreme, these answers begin a journey towards dreams and living life safely and on our own terms.

The VERBATIM column presents open-ended questions to industry colleagues. Taken from a familiar “Heard on the Street” format, we offer our responders a chance to reply via e-mail. What is offered below are their personal thoughts in response to the question above.



We are going to Disneyland! At the beginning of the year, we set the date for April 25th.  We also bought matching shirts to wear with “Disneyland 2020” imprinted on them.  As a family we decided not to go until the mandatory face mask restriction is lifted.  We will be wearing our shirts whenever we go, even if it is in another year.  🙂

Julie Johnson

Ted Johnson Propane

Baldwin Park, California


For me, I’m going to Tanzania to hunt Cats. Hopefully COVID doesn’t get in the way. That means I’ll need to take all the meds with me just in case.

John Kamps

Kamps Propane

Manteca, California


Chuck and Judy Kinnie are traveling to Portland, Maine from Northern California the first of July to visit family. There is no quarantine requirement there. We had scheduled a cruise up the East coast that was cancelled so we’re going to fly back.

Quarantine is when you restrict the movement of sick people.

Tyranny is when you restrict the movement of well people.

Chuck Kinnie

Shasta Gas Propane

Palo Cedro, California


Wiesbaden, Germany. My son is stationed there and we love Germany. What a beautiful country. Plus we really miss him, his sweet wife and our beautiful granddaughter.

Brad Duncan

Allaround Propane, Inc.

Fruitland, New Mexico


My first destination would be Southern California to reconnect with family and friends. COVID has reminded me that we are, indeed, mortal and that our time in this world is uncertain.

Dan Binning

Colorado and New Mexico Propane Gas Associations

Arvada, Colorado


My destination would be Clearwater Beach, Florida. This has been a very challenging year for everyone and beach therapy is exactly what my family and I need to get back to normal. The healing of the salt water and serenity of the sunsets is good for the soul.

Ed Varney

Rego Products

McKinney, Texas


We are fortunate because restrictions were lifted in our area in mid-May. Priority # 1 – haircuts!  Priority # 2 – setting down in a restaurant for chips, salsa and tacos. We are also looking forward to a summer vacation, hopefully on a beach.

Jason Soulon

Westmor Industries

Shawnee, Kansas


In the words of Johnny Cash, everywhere man!

Reno, Chicago, Fargo, Minnesota, Buffalo, Toronto, Winslow, Sarasota, Wichita, Tulsa, Ottawa, Oklahoma, Tampa, Panama, Mattawa, La Paloma, Bangor, Baltimore, Salvador, Amarillo, Tocopilla, Barranquilla, and Padilla, Boston, Charleston, Dayton, Louisiana, Washington, Houston, Kingston, Texarkana, Monterey, Faraday, Santa Fe, Tallapoosa, Glen Rock, Black Rock, Little Rock, Oskaloosa, Tennessee to Hennessey, Chicopee, Spirit Lake, Grand Lake, Devil’s Lake, Crater Lake, Louisville, Nashville, Knoxville, Ombabika, Schefferville, Jacksonville, Waterville, Costa Rica, Pittsfield, Springfield, Bakersfield, Shreveport,  Hackensack, Cadillac, Fond du Lac, Davenport, Idaho, Jellico, Argentina, Diamantina, Pasadena, Catalina, Pittsburgh, Parkersburg, Gravelbourg, Colorado, Ellensburg, Rexburg, Vicksburg, El Dorado, Larimore, Admore, Haverstraw, Chatanika, Chaska, Nebraska, Alaska, Opelaka, Baraboo, Waterloo, Kalamazoo, Kansas City, Sioux City, Cedar City, Dodge City!

I’m going everywhere!

Boyd H. McGathey

Energy Distribution Partners

Parkville, Missouri


The first destination I have in mind after restrictions really isn’t a place, it’s more like – Anywhere that all of my friends and family can gather together.  This includes all of my friends and family in the industry that I’ve spent the last 30 some years “gathering” with at trade shows, conventions, and board meetings for the various associations that I’ve had the privilege to be a member of.  These are the things I’ve missed the most since the pandemic started and restrictions were put in place to keep us safe.  I pray that everyone has kept themselves as safe as possible and also pray for those dear friends and family that we’ve lost due to the pandemic!

Milt Swenson

Westmor Industries

Morris, Minnesota




Since the first travel destination cancelled was a family weekend at The Great Wolf Lodge Water Park in Minnesota to have some indoor water fun at the end of winter, this Fourth of July at the lake with the family will provide me with a much greater appreciation of our cottage and the fun we have as a family at home. As I write this response, there is a lot of craziness in the larger cities, so for now my favorite destination is wherever I can be with my family – our seven grandchildren provide me the seven wonders of the world.

Gary France

France Propane Service

Schofield, Wisconsin


Our first destination once the restrictions are lifted is to go see the grandkids!  We have a 4-month old, 2-month old and one due in 2 weeks and have had limited contact due to COVID.  Beyond that, it will be nice to go see some customers and get back to some form of normalcy.

Tracy Timmerman


Salem, Illinois


Now that summer is here, the first place I’d like to travel to is anywhere in northern Michigan with my family. You’d be hard-pressed to find a more beautiful destination from June through September. The trip “Up North” is worth it just for the smoked salmon and whitefish. If you’ve never had smoked fish from the Great Lakes, you’re really missing out.

Don Montroy

Bergquist, Inc.

Rockford, Michigan


We have always enjoyed traveling, whether it be to an NPGA event, a sporting event, or vacation.  We did not have any definite travel plans in place this summer, other than several three or four day trips.  All of those have been cancelled.  We plan on returning to travel slowly, once things open back up.  As of now, we are hoping to attend the NPGA Executive Board meeting in August as well as the NPGA Board Meeting in September.  We are very excited and hopeful about a planned trip to Amsterdam next April – but only if it can be done safely!

Rosie Buschur

McMahan’s Bottle Gas

Dayton, Ohio


Restrictions in Georgia are adjusted to 50 people.  I will be going to my Annual Meeting at Barnsley Resort in Adairsville.

Jennifer McKeen

Georgia Propane Gas Association

Marietta, Georgia


This one is easy!  Down under!  Australia and New Zealand!

Laurie Irish-Jones

Irish Propane

Buffalo, New York


My husband and I had a trip booked the first week in June to Sandals Emerald Bay in Great
Exuma, Bahamas and it was canceled of course.  We were planning to celebrate our one year anniversary and my birthday.  We are looking forward to attempting the trip again in 2021.  If I lived far apart from my family or friends, that would be my first designation, but  I’m fortunate enough to have them all close to me (but not too close) during this pandemic.  J

Hayley Karicofe


Churchville, Virginia


Honestly, I’m more of a U.S. traveler myself – or at least I used to be. I have always said we have so many beautiful places right here in the U.S. to see, visit and learn our own history. Sadly that seems to be changing. The one trip I was planning for this summer before the brakes were applied was a train trip that went across Canada and the upper part of the U.S. I think that would be my first go to trip. If I were to travel abroad, I hope to plan a trip to Italy someday and visit where my family came from outside of Naples.

Judy Taranovich

Proctor Gas

Proctor, Vermont




It seems many have learned something about themselves during the pandemic that they may not have learned if it hadn’t happened. It’s been a difficult reality to face with some tragic outcomes. Freedom of movement is clearly one of the freedoms we dearly miss. Whether your ambition is the next town or far-reaching continents, travel safely as you navigate in this new world.



Nancy Coop, Cetane Associates

This column was first published in the August 2020 issue of Butane-Propane News.

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