Day One – September 10, 2012


Sorry it has taken so long to start this blog. I have had no good WiFi connection on the road until now to get this set up plus some nights I had no amenities – I was in a steel tent “roughing it” as it were. I will post each day that I already have done as I go through and edit them, then I plan to get current… and hopefully stay caught up.

Well, today is the first real day of my new adventure… my new life… my new journey. I write this as I am sitting in the camper for the first night in Theodore Roosevelt National Park. It is exciting, yet a bit strange, to be doing this.

I no longer have a house, nor do I have many personal possessions any more. I went from having enough stuff to fill a 2200 sf house, to what I am able to fit into a small camper and the back of my Ford Explorer. It is actually quite a feeling to be so free – kinda like that first time you go commando to someplace like the grocery store. As I told Meghan the other day, “…no, I am not dying so that is not why I am getting rid of stuff!”. This all probably sounds rather pathetic or horrible to some, but it is a re-birth.

I say that this is the first “real day” because everything up until this was in preparation for this big life change. The last six months have been, shall we say, trying and tedious to say the least. So many decisions, and not able to plan anything out to any degree since there were so many variables for each thing I had to take care of in a deliberate and careful order (and those who know me know what I feel about planning much). Thanks to good friends and family I was able to keep my sanity (debatable, I know), and staying focused and resolute is how I was able to get to the point I am now at. It has not been easy to say the least, but I made it.

As I left my house for the final time Friday morning I really did not think much about what was actually happening… leaving the place I spent the last 16 years of my life… a place I have always loved from as far back as I can remember. Colorado will always be a special place to me and be in my heart forever. Many good memories happened there, and they greatly outnumber a few I do my best to forget. I made many new friends there and many will always stay with me no matter the distance.

Today I left my daughter Meghan’s house in Spearfish, SD after a great visit. I got to her new apartment (a very nice, brand new place) on Friday and we got to hang for a few days and do some things. One of those things was I bought a new bike and we went for a ride. It was a lot of fun, but my body is in less than ideal shape so I will be riding and exercising quite a bit more. Yesterday we went to Badlands National Park, then got to see the exterior of the Minuteman Missile Silo National Monument. A real “man” moment.

The launch door is partially opened and a glass cover is over it so you can see into the silo
Staring down the barrel of a loaded gun…

Pretty cool place

I went north up US 85 through western South Dakota into North Dakota. I arrived here at TRNP at sunset. From what I could see in the waning light was quite beautiful and spectacular. I hope to be up early in the morning to get out and do a hike before it gets too hot. Drove right past a herd of buffalo as I was going into the campground. At the house in Bailey I just left the sun would dip denied the mountain around 5pm or so; seeing a sunset around 7:30 or 8:00 was awesome and I have not seen that in quite a while. My new gig is on the Washington coast so I will get to see it every night now.

I would be an even bigger slacker if I did not thank those who have supported and been there for me the last few months:

My daughters Angie, Chelsea, and Meghan, and granddaughters Alexis, Abby, and Emery for being the wonderful people that they are. They live their lives on their own terms, and of that I am extremely proud and happy.

All of my family and friends for always being supportive, even when I did dumb shit that I probably should not have done. This goes double for my parents. I know I have been a pain in the ass at times, and I apologize for those times, but hey… I turned out okay because of you!

Thanks also go to my parents for letting me borrow the Scotty camper to undertake this adventure. This has made things much easier and gives me a chance to test the waters before I buy a trailer or RV of my own. I just wish people would quit asking me about the camper all the damn time. It is getting old!

A quick note concerning the maps I have inserted into the blog… please click on “View larger Map” if you want more details on the routes I have taken. Most of the maps I had to shrink so much the details are lost.

If you want to read more of my adventures getting to Washington, I have dated and numbered each post so you can read in order the blogs of my travels.

December 8th, 2018


It’s been a bit busy lately. A plane ride to Montana, wrapping up holiday shopping in Seattle, getting some things done around the house – filing away and getting rid of old papers, going through stuff to put away and getting rid of some things.

Lately I have gotten to try a few new places to eat. Before I went to MT I ate at a burger chain called The Habit. It is supposed to be an up-and-coming place but I was not overly impressed. The burger was decent but the fries were rather generic and boring. I felt that it, much like Five Guys, was way overpriced (but not AS overpriced as FG). Five Guys has some of the best fries I have ever eaten. and all of the toppings included for no extra charge…but too pricey. To me the best burgers for the money are usually the greasy ones at the dives.

Thai Basil in Bozeman was pretty good (found out it is a chain, casual atmosphere), and The Local in Belgrade, MT had a delicious Wagyu burger at a reasonable price for the quality (but still a little higher price than average). They had an interesting cocktail called the Bridger Sunset. It was a cocktail with a giant ice ball in the middle that could only be melted by the superpowers of an additional shot of Grey Goose once the drink was gone (the “shot” being defined as a finger+ of Grey Goose in a highball glass). The drink alone was pretty damn strong but after the first drink it’s easy to like. Wouldn’t take many of those to call it a night.

I forgot what it was like to be in the snow and cold, and I got a bit of a reminder while in MT. I can honestly say that I still don’t like the snow even if I go to it and it doesn’t come to me. One morning it was 12 and I am not used to that nonsense anymore. But, as they say, “it is a dry cold”. I don’t care if it is dry or not…it was still too damn cold. Better than summer’s heat though. But I STILL want to see Alaska/Iceland/Scandinavia in the middle of winter.

While there Meghan gave me a discount code for Hello Fresh, which she had been singing the praises of. I signed up and got my first box of three meals yesterday. I chose pork carnitas, cauliflower bacon mac and cheese, and beef bulgogi that I made last night. Very impressive menu and quality of ingredients plus I don’t have to go shopping for dinner.

The bulgogi was absolutely delicious and easy to make. Each meal comes with a recipe card and you can keep those filed away in case you want to buy the ingredients and make it again. Ordering the meals for two, since I am single, gives me two meals of each of the three entrees and the portions are decent size. That is almost a week’s worth of dinner! If you are interested in joining click on the link and save $40!

Looks like I’ll be going back to work late January so I better get busy doing things I might want to do and going places I might want to go. Not really ready to go back to work yet but it’s gonna happen eventually for each of the next few years. I may have another road trip or two I can take the next few weeks but we’ll see what happens. I thought about going south into CA again and taking the trailer out, but I have it winterized and don’t want to undo that work.

Yesterday I went to a mall. I rarely do that but I needed to get a few things in the area and I found a great sale on my Levi’s 501s. I had not been to Skipper’s (a local seafood fast food joint) in probably five years so while in the area I got to enjoy some of their clam chowder and the Skipper’s Platter – fish, shrimp, clams, fries, slaw (no thanks – don’t like mayo slaw). The clam chowder there is not really creamy like New England clam chowders I have had. It is more like a thicker gravy full of delicious oceanic goodness. They even have various “All-You-Can-Eat” menu options for just a few dollars more. I have not eaten the chowder at Ivar’s so I cannot compare the two. It is on my list to try theirs though.

I had a Roomba I had purchased a few days back but it didn’t work out real well so I took it back yesterday to B3 – Bed, Bath and Beyond. It was a lower-level model – the 600 Series. It just ran around the house like it had ADHD. First the dining area for a lap, maybe two. Then it was off to do the same thing in the living room but repeat a few times. Same thing in the bedroom and kitchen and then take off and repeat areas. It was crazy how it would do little bits here and there instead of doing a whole room at once.

Today I went to a market and saw something that I had never seen before. In the produce section was something called “oca“. I thought “why not?” and bought some – about a handful – to try. I looked them up on the interwebs and found out they are quite nutritious. I ate them raw and found the texture like a cross between a potato and a radish. The taste is varied from little flavor to sweet to sour to potato-like. They appear to be quite high in carbs and energy.

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Oca

I found them to be tasty and an interesting thing to eat. I will probably get more but they are pretty spendy (but you have to try them!). They would be a very healthy snack. The info on the link above talks about them dried. That might be interesting to try out.

I stopped by the local bakery to get croissants to go with my fruit, prosciutto and gouda for a healthier/lighter breakfast the next few days. I don’t want to buy them too far out – I want them to be as fresh as they can be. Yeah, a bit more inconvenient but that’s okay for the quality.

While I was out and about I also got the recycling taken to the dumpsters. I found a bed frame at a thrift store so I can FINALLY get the bins out from underneath my boxspring. That was never intended to be permanent – just a temporary thing to get me by. I can get that sorted out tomorrow and rearrange the bedroom. I’ll try to put away more stuff in bins and eventually sell them since I am in a bigger house now. I think I will move my ginormous upright toolbox to the utility room and just deal with moving it around to maneuver into the basement. I wouldn’t have to do it that often and I want the closet space for other stuff.

It is nice to be home and have some time to not only relax, but to also get some things done like arranging the bedroom and getting more organizing done. I have been enjoying too much of the relaxing and not doing enough of the organizing.

I ordered some new coats from Outdoor Research and they came yesterday. I have had one of their water-repellent rain shells for five years or so and it has been great. I got a new shell for rain, one of the same the next size bigger, and a down hoody for insulation to wear under the larger one. My experience with the 3-in-1 jackets is the shells are always too big on them.

It’s been a while since I posted so I guess I had a lot to say.

 

 

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November 28th, 2018


So much for my new robot vac. I knew something didn’t look quite right with my order but I couldn’t figure out what it was.

As I have said before I try my best to avoid Amazon and shop locally. Sometimes, however, the companies use Amazon as their only storefront or you need something and cannot find it anyplace else. Then there are the times there is that unbeatable price. The last one was the case for the robot vac – $199 (usually much more) PLUS a $30 coupon. Pretty great deal.

I was looking at my order closer and I finally figured out what was wrong. They charged me $229 and then gave me the $30 coupon. I called them to see what the deal was and I was told that the prices fluctuate and I got charged a higher price. I told them Jeff Bezos could kiss my ass and I will not buy anything from Amazon again. The item would be refused and I’ll just take the refund. I was told it would not be corrected but they offered me a $15 credit and an apology. I told the guy that would do no good since I was not going to be buying anything else from Amazon.

WTF? I click the “Buy” button on an item for a certain price and get charged a higher one? What kind of BS is that? This experience has taught me to keep a closer eye on an order more closely before I click the button. I will be looking into consumer protection with the state Attorney General to let them know about my experience.

I also learned something else about Amazon recently that I want to pass along. Just like the airlines, Amazon also uses that chickenshit tactic of raising the prices each time you do a search for the same thing. You can get around it by using a private browser and also not logging in until you are ready to buy. This way they cannot track your browsing or store it in your online account.

Okay…rant over.

I was really looking forward to getting that thing. Oh well. Gotta go get the broom and dustpan out of the trash.

November 22nd, 2018


It’s Thanksgiving Day today. I don’t have any plans – the traffic will suck badly everywhere and I don’t want to deal with it. Better yet, I don’t HAVE to deal with it. The weather is also supposed to be rainy and it only adds to the traffic issues. I’ll probably just hang close to the house the next day or two.

As I write this I am looking out the window watching the birds. I put birdseed in the feeders and the sparrows and juncos are going crazy. The feeders don’t work for the Steller’s jays because of their size but it doesn’t stop them from trying. They are all ravenous once they discover food and the feeders need filled up again today. They will have to wait until the rain stops though.

I went to the store yesterday and the hot food bar they have had roast turkey and all the fixings (no sweet potatoes/yams, or pumpkin pie, thank you) so I decided to get a to-go box and have my yearly turkey dinner yesterday. I eat turkey about twice a year – I prefer chicken to turkey. I don’t want to waste any food (and I also don’t want six months of leftovers) so I don’t make a turkey at home. I made one a few years ago that turned out really good, but being single it is way too much food that won’t get eaten anyway.

So I got home and ate my turkey dinner. It was good – the mashed potatoes were real with chunks of redskin potatoes. While at the store I picked up a few things I needed for my Thanksgiving lasagne. I put it all together in the baking pan and put it in the fridge so it’s ready to bake. I saw a marionberry pie at the store that was calling my name, but I know if I buy a whole pie I’ll eat the whole damn thing at one sitting. Berries are my favorite fruit, and berry pies are my favorite. I want to try and make some berry hand pies soon so that should make my cravings happy. I want to try to replicate my grandma’s fried peach pies at some point too. Man, those were a favorite childhood memory along with her scratch-made apple pies.

This is a busy time of year with a lot of personal events besides the holidays. Tomorrow is my dad’s birthday. It’s hard to believe he is gone and I miss him and my mom quite a bit. Sunday it will be four years since my motorcycle wreck. There are a couple of other birthdays over the next two months.

It’s looking like I won’t be going back to work as soon as I thought but will still be going back early. I have a few personal items I need to take care of so I can definitely use the time to take care of these things and not miss any work.

I decided to buy a robot vac and it is on it’s way! I don’t have carpeting to catch (and hold) dirt and a laminate/hardwood floor always looks dirty even when it isn’t that bad so I decided to get one. It even has a mop in it so that is another plus. There are so many brands and models to choose from but I finally decided on the Deebot M88. I have seen how much Meghan’s Roomba helps them keep their floors clean with pets. Since I don’t have pets it should really help maintain the floors here so I don’t have to sweep daily.

That’s it for now.

November 15th, 2018


It has been quite busy lately wrapping up business stuff with my parents’ estate but I almost (finally) have it all taken care of. I believe there are only two more things to finish and it will be completed. It’s been a learning experience but I am glad it is about done.

My oldest granddaughter has moved up here to the Seattle last week so it has been fun hanging with her and her boyfriend for the past few days. They are here at my house for now and their new place should be ready any time to move into. Seattle will be a big change from the Midwest for them but they are ready for it.

They made a run to Seattle to check on some things so I stayed home and took care of a few business things and ran some errands. While out and about I thought Thai food sounded good so that was late lunch today. My chopstick skills are getting better and want to buy my own chopsticks to keep up the practice at home.

I recently backed a Kickstarter project for an improved version of a travel pillow that everyone raves about called Trtl Pillow. The new Trtl Pillow Plus I bought is supposed to be even better than its highly-rated predecessor. I have not received it yet but hope to get it in the next few weeks. Those old-school “fuzzy-bagel-looking neck pillows” just do not work for me in an airplane seat. This is definitely a new way of thinking about travel pillows and I bought it only after seeing all the great reviews all over the internet (so you know it must be true…unless it’s an Amazon review).

I am trying to enjoy my remaining time off while I can since I’ll be headed back to work soon. I’d like to go someplace but not sure where or even when at the moment. Staying home and saving money isn’t a bad thing either. I want to experience Alaska, Iceland, or even Scandinavia in the wintertime – I just have to do it. You never know…I may do them all! I’m not sure how soon it’ll be but I do want to do that. If I had a chance I’d even go to Antarctica or the Arctic and see what that’s like. No, I don’t like snow but there are things you just have to do and that’s one of those things. 

I got the water drained out of the Scotty tank and lines a few weeks ago and put RV anti-freeze in the drains. I hope to get the cover on maybe tomorrow and it will be put away for the season. I was hoping to get it out again but I don’t think it will happen this year unless I dry-camp. There was too much going on this year to do more trips in it than what I did unfortunately. This coming year will bring new opportunities to travel and get out on the road more often. At least I got to get it out on the road when I went to California.

I am thinking about getting a robot vacuum. My house would be a great candidate for it and with an open floor-plan and laminate floors it gets dusty/dirty fast even being careful. A robo-vac would be so nice to keep ahead of the bits of leaves and grass while I am gone to work. Meghan has one and she could not get by without it – her hands would be grafted onto her broom if she didn’t have it. With her pets it is a huge time-saver.

November 5th, 2018


Been getting quite a few things done over the past week or so that I have been home. It’s good to be back but it was good to see family. We busted our asses every day we were there, and that was after driving four days to get there and I took five getting home. It is all we did – no real time to visit with anyone. Needless to say I was ready for some downtime but many things still have to get done. (And needless to say driving that distance without the trailer was a long trip; it made me think about driving all the way to Maine from here pulling the trailer. It will be a long journey. EACH WAY.)

We had a good time though, and it really feels like we made a lot of progress.

I sat on my couch all the live long day yesterday. I watched movies and the first two seasons of Seinfeld. It was my down day after two and a half weeks on the go and dammit I needed a break. I deserved it and I was gonna be selfish. It was awesome but there’s always that remorse of taking a day for yourself and thinking it was wasted.

I got a few business calls made and a few errands ran today. I then cooked up breakfast burritos for the week. I made some burrito-size ones and some small ones like taquitos. I am going to fry them to crispy on the outside. I am curious to see how that turns out.

I then made some spaghetti sauce from canned tomato sauce and it turned out pretty good. The recipe called for canned tomatoes but all I had was three cans of the sauce form of the fruit. I put it together and then tweaked and added green peppers here and more onions there, parmesan cheese, garlic powder everywhere. I put it on top of some penne pasta and it has turned out very good – like a chunky vegetable arrabbiata sauce that thickened on the plate. Wonderful mouth feel and texture. I actually cut up some grilled burgers from last night and put them in the pot too. It adds a nice, interesting smokiness to the sauce. I have plenty to freeze so I have maybe 10 days of meals in the freezer now. It’s a decent selection too.

Next time I make pasta sauce I would like to do it from complete scratch – cooking and reducing the tomatoes myself and then adding in the spices and such. I usually buy Classico and doctor it a little, but this batch I just made turned out so good I need to make more from the ground up. I hope I can repeat this recipe and can it in jars in my InstantPot. That’s my goal this year – make and can my own pasta sauce.

I like cooking and I like good food so having leftovers to freeze for later and not buying frozen meals at the store is healthier and something fun to do. Problem is, I don’t get to enjoy cooking as much since I have so much frozen when I cook. Not a bad problem to have, I guess!

What I have been doing is keeping a variety in the freezer. I will eat a couple of meals of leftovers and to the back of the rotation it goes in the freezer, and then when I am on the last serving or two I will cook up another dish. I can keep plenty of good food in the house and supplement with some fresh things from the store as needed or for a change.

Looks like I’ll be going back to work soon. I had a few places I went to, and wanted to do more, but we’ll have to see how things unfold. It will be good to replenish the bank account but I am really enjoying the time off after what we have been through. There’s a few other moving parts as well and I don’t know how it’s all going to align yet and won’t know for a month or two.

I have gotten to go a lot of places this year so I still shouldn’t complain. I mentioned this earlier in another post, but I have been places since then. My California trip and the Kansas trip I just got back from on top of Montana, Europe, and the numerous trips to KS to see my dad.

It’s looking quite like a trip to Seattle later in the week but we’ll see what’s going on when the time comes. I’m thinking while I am in Seattle a trip to Dick’s Drive-In would be a good thing to do.Having the time off tends to spoil a person and

I need to get a winter coat and a new rain jacket. I am a big fan of Outdoor Research rain jackets if you want a reasonably priced, quality item that lasts. Their down puffy “jackets” are really good as well from what I am told. I need to go to their store if I get there this week and have time so I can try a few things on and see what extras they feature in person. I gotta go find some new pants and shirts too.

I think it’s time for a little style change-up for my wardrobe. I’ll see where it’s going but I have the desire to do something just a little different. I really like the look and fit of my 501s, but I really like the functionality of cargo pants on top of the comfort. Levi’s have gotten so overpriced and the quality has gone downhill – fewer belt loops and what feels like thinner material.

It won’t be THAT drastic so everyone calm the heck down. I’m pretty sure my family needn’t worry about me going into a “Goth phase”, or even pondering becoming a Furry. “Never say never” they say…whomever “they” are. I can safely say that I will never have either one of those things happening with me…although one would be more likely than the other. Bwahahahaha.

Anyway, that is about all for now.

 

October 30, 2018


Today I started heading home from Meghan’s house. I chose to wait because of the weather – snow and rain on at least two of the three mountain passes I have to cross and today is supposed to be drier for the two I am mostly concerned with.

It’s been a bit of a bittersweet day. I am ready to get home, but ironically it was two years ago today that I was driving home this very same route through Montana and got the news my mom had died. I had just checked into my room in Missoula late at night when the call came.

Perhaps this is why I did not sleep worth a damn last night. Lying in bed trying to go to sleep I realized that today was “that” day and I will be in the same spot on the same day exactly two years later. Meghan had been working on some entries in my mom’s genealogy stuff last night before bed and she did not sleep either. Between these things and what we had to do this past week it all finally caught up with me. A bit of a rough morning but it’s okay.

I was hoping to push all the way home but I left very late morning (not in THAT big of a hurry) and had a leisurely start to the day. I got to Ellensburg and had earlier booked a queen suite at the Best Western Plus (was the cheapest they had…) and I gotta say that I have stayed in a few of these hotels now and they are consistently nice, clean and well-run. I recommend this chain along with Holiday Inn Express so you KNOW that means I know what I am talking about. Hahaha. This hotel has, get this, a 24 hour pool, warm (!) tub, and the breakfast room is open for juices, coffee, and fresh fruits all night plus breakfast in the morning. Hell of a bargain for the price. And, just like Holiday Inn Express…fresh-baked cookies in the lobby.

I really think I am through with the cheap hotel chains now. I am treating myself a little better when I am out on the road. I am going to stay with the American classics we all grew up knowing and staying in. Sure, it may be a few more dollars but I think it is money well-spent to have a very nice room when you are being a road warrior. I still tend to get carried away with trying to “get someplace” but am getting better at slowing the pace down. I still need to work on it more though!

October 28th, 2018


I am starting this post in Montana, sitting at the dining room table getting ready to eat some breakfast. Meghan, Addy and I have just returned from a week in KS. The long and arduous process of going through things in the house and getting business matters in order was the purpose of our trip.

I had an afternoon appointment on Monday before I left two weeks ago and I decided to go ahead and leave after that to get a jump on getting on the road. With such a late start it ended up being two shorter days of driving instead of one really long one. That was nice for a change and much easier – so much better that I will just do that from now on.

I got to Coeur d’Alene and unfortunately the hotel I stayed in turned out to be crappy. I was more than happy to get out of there and will time my trip to stay someplace outside of that city going forward. This is the third different hotel I have used there and all three have been bad.

The trip to Meghan’s house went well. It is a l-o-n-g drive on I-90 across Montana from the Idaho border. I have done the drive several times and have stopped at several places to see things so there’s not much left to see for me to stop at now. It’s not NEARLY as bad as the drive from Ellensburg, WA through Spokane though.

We got up the next day (Wednesday) and left somewhat early – destination Denver. Speaking of horrible drives, the drive from Livingston, MT to Denver is a real yawner. It’s good to be able to drive 75-80 MPH to get through it faster. It is still a long and boring drive even at those speeds.

We got to our hotel in Denver and were ready to sleep. It was a long day – about 12 hours of being in the truck – and the three of us were done for the day. Addy did very good during the long day traveling and didn’t complain until the last 15 minutes. The hotel was nice and was a welcome sight after my experience in C d’A.

Thursday was the final push to KS – another boring drive and an extraordinarily windy one this trip. I have made that drive many, many times over the decades, sometimes three or four times a year. I have stopped in many places along the way so there’s no need to stop much other than food, fuel and leg-stretching. And the Cozy Inn in Salina, KS, which I have blogged about before. Since I usually fly I always take the time to stop at the Cozy when I drive back to buy a sack of burgers. Yes, they were delicious as always.

We got to KS late afternoon. We stopped at the house and I stayed while Meghan went on in to Chelsea’s house. The next day, the task of going through my parents’ things began.

It is a difficult thing to do, going through the stuff and the memories, but it all has to be done. Going through the possessions is tough, but not nearly as tough as settling the financial affairs and taking ownership of the house and the things to be kept.

Between me, my sister, my three daughters and a cousin or two we spent the best part of an entire week taking care of a lot of things and there’s more to do. We did get a lot done but there’s still more to do. For me, living a somewhat minimalist lifestyle the last six+ years means it’s quite a task to go through all of the things my parents accumulated over both their lifetimes. I have brought home some things that mean something to me as well as papers and other stuff I need to sort at home since I have more time to do that there.

We left KS Thursday morning to begin the long drive home through all of the same scenery (or lack thereof). We drove to Denver and left midday on Friday so we could visit with a couple of people, deciding in advance that for Addy’s comfort we would break it up between Denver and their house by staying the night in Casper, WY. We ended up in a Holiday Inn Express and it is one of the best hotels I have ever stayed in – no issues at all with anything. This may be my new go-to hotel chain.

This brings me full-circle back to the dinner table I started this post on. I plan on starting the solo portion of the trip in the next few days and get this last two days of driving over and done with. I will have been gone over two weeks by the time I get back home. I have a ballot to fill out for this very important election along with other personal business to attend to. I need to go to work and talk about a few things with them and check on my potential timeline to return to work. The weather is looking a bit iffy so I am not exactly sure how long I will be staying after just now checking the radar.

So far it has been a great trip, albeit under less-than-ideal circumstances given what we were going there to do. Addy did exceptionally well traveling and it has been a long time since Meghan and I had a road trip together.

That’s all the news there is for now. I don’t know if there will be anything else to write about for the remainder of the trip so we’ll see what happens.

Please note: I do not post anything on my blog until after I have returned home. It’s just something I do for my privacy.

 

Blog Changes


It’s time to change the blog up a little bit so on top of the theme changes you will get notifications about posts.

On top of the changes to the format I deleted a few pictures early this morning and need to edit some posts to remove the blanks. That’s the reason for the notifications that you are receiving.

Just an update to make you aware and also so you are not wondering “what is he doing now?”.

October 13th, 2018


I am officially off work for a while now…let the time off begin! I am not really sure how long it will last since I may have the chance to go in to work extra and get a few more  paychecks in the bank. Extra money is never a bad thing. At least I don’t think so.

I have a lot of things on the to-do list for my time off. I am trying to get finished unpacking – I cleaned out my storage unit today and got some of the storage tubs emptied out and things put away. I have about seven of the tubs left and they will take some time to put away so it’s good to have the time off to finish that up. I am more than ready to have this done so I can do other stuff.

I have been able to get rid of some things and I am sure there will be more stuff to thin out. Some things I have not seen for a while so obviously I don’t miss it while stored so out it goes. I donated my motorcycle riding gear since I am not riding anymore. I have donated a few boxes of stuff already and started to fill another one. I am finding places to put things I am keeping and have recycled many cardboard boxes in the process.

I need to get a few things done in the yard. Luckily the bees got rid of many of the plums that had fallen on the ground. The feral rabbits have started working on the apples on the ground and I imagine the bees will hit those as they start to rot. If I am still in this house this time next year I’ll get them as they ripen or fall to keep the yard clear.

I have some more traveling that I want to do during my time off so I am definitely looking forward to doing that. I have one trip lined up, another I am in the process of figuring out, and maybe another depending on my additional work schedule. You’ll have to check back to see where I end up. I might even have to check back myself to see where I end up!

The weather lately has been cool but very nice…the proverbial calm before the storm and should stay nice this coming week. There have been the typical rains for the time of year but we have been enjoying sun and short-sleeve weather lately so it has been very pleasant. With the cooler weather coming on it means I need to get the trailer winterized. I could still take it out to “dry camp” without using the water system, or I could even use it wet once I got someplace warmer and re-winterize when I get back. But for now, though, the cover is going back on it after I clear out the water system.

I need to get started on breakfast and get some more organizing done. Hopefully today will be a day to kick back after I get that and the trailer taken care of.

Enjoy your day!

October 5th, 2018


It has been a busy week this last week between moving all last weekend and work. I have been getting things put away from moving this week and need to go clean out my storage unit in the next few weeks. I get stuff put away in the house, only to have bring more things from storage to find a place for.

It is odd that I can now start getting rid of cardboard boxes that I have had things stored in. Most of it was in plastic storage tubs but some was in boxes and some was in milk crates I had. With moving so much the last 6 ½ years I never really had room or time to settle in very much and unpack. I’m looking at not making a major move any more so I’m able to live a little more of a “normal” existence and get things unpacked and gone through.

I have already started going through some things from storage and have things I will get rid of – haven’t used the stuff in a long time so no real need to keep it. It will free up some more space too. Luckily I have a small basement to put things in so the plastic tubs will be refilled and put there with things I want to keep as they are emptied. My old motorcycle clothes and good helmet (not in the wreck) will be donated (except for my well-worn old-school leather jacket – no way that’s being gotten rid of).

A neighbor came over the other day and said that some other neighbors knew I was moving and they had some furniture if I needed/wanted some. I’ll be going to look at that stuff Sunday and probably bring some things home. I just might have a new (to me) couch, recliner, table and chairs and not sure what else. It was really very nice of them to offer the stuff to me since I have never even met these people until yesterday. These are the kind of neighbors I have where I live.

It’s odd (at least for me) to be acquiring things again after getting rid of so many things since before I moved from Colorado. It’s new again to me to be becoming stationary and “established” someplace. I guess it will have to happen at some point anyhoo so this is as good of a time and place as any.

Tonight I watched a movie called “Crossing Borders“. I really enjoyed this documentary and the interactions between the students in the movie – four Moroccan and four American – were very interesting. They spent a week traveling in Morocco and learned a lot about not only themselves and each other but also about the preconceived perceptions of each other and their cultures. The magic of travel.

Been a long and tiring day today so I am off to bed. Sleep well, World.

September 30th, 2018


It has been very busy this weekend. I moved to a new place. Yes, I moved. Again.

I am now living in a bigger house. I spent Friday night, yesterday, and a few hours this morning moving and cleaning the old house. I got it all done with some kick-back time afterwards but I still need to put some things away. It was an easy move – the house next door.

It is over twice the size of the tiny house I just moved out of.  The yard is huge and really nice with a raised garden bed, apple, plum and cherry trees. I have a fireplace/wood stove and plenty of room to stretch my arms. There’s a nice patio with Adirondack chair and double Adirondack chair. The front porch is big enough to just hang out on if I want shade.

So yeah…I am rather excited to be in a much bigger place for many reasons. I have great neighbors in a nice little neighborhood. I have fruit trees and can plant a garden in a raised bed. Since I just bought a blender those apples will get put to good use – I just might try my hand at making some pies. I’ll probably have to just get the apples and freeze them for now. I have a lot of stuff to put away before I cook like that.

Next year I can plant some tomatoes, beans, and peas in the raised bed. On a whim I planted a couple of tomato cores into a ceramic pot a couple of weeks ago and they are actually growing. I have room to bring it inside so I am curious to see how it will do in a southern window. I still have a strawberry plant that’s alive but I am not hopeful on that one.

I don’t plan on moving again for a while. This new place is a nice size and even has enough room to bring all my stuff from the storage unit and save a few $$. I got a few things out of there yesterday but still have some things to get. I want to get what I already have organized before I bring more in.

I am tired so I am off to bed. See you next time.

 

 

September 23rd, 2018


This was my last night camping so I decided to have a campfire. Oh what the heck. I have not had a fire mesmerize me in a while and it was nice. Staring at a fire is one of those magical things. I can get totally lost in thought watching a campfire. I contemplated many things in between those blanks staring at that fire tonight as one is prone to do with a fire.

Having the trailer sure makes it easy to go and see places and do things much the way I did when I would tent camp. I still travel with few frills, stay in primitive campgrounds…simple, inexpensive and very enjoyable travel with no plans. I spend the money to go more often and buy very few souvenirs when I am out. I am not cheap…I just don’t buy stuff like that and I never really have.

Last night I decided to just head on home and it ended up being a good thing. I had a lot of things to take care of – washing the salty film off of the truck and trailer, laundry, some cooking, and working on some other things around the house. I wanted to avoid traffic but heading up 101 into Oregon I got caught in the weekly US101 Boat and RV Show – a parade of slow-moving rubberneckers who refuse to pull over to let people by. I actually ended up biting the bullet and came back through Portland. I ended up being able to avoid most of the traffic going through McMinnville. It was still faster but the traffic was not as bad this time.

This has been a nice adventure and it was badly-needed. I could really tell last week that I was ready to hit the road and realized Monday that I really needed to get away more than I thought. By the end of the work day I couldn’t get home fast enough to wrap things up to go. I have been able to relax and see some new places. I finally got to see Crater Lake – something I have wanted to see since I was a kid.

See you next time!

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