October 28th, 2018

Adventure, Just things, Travel, Uncategorized

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

pictures, Uncategorized

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

Adventure, Just things, Scotty Hilander, Travel, Uncategorized

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

Adventure, food, Just things, Outdoors, Uncategorized

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.