Thursday, April 30, 2009

Ten Pounds Of Mail

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 64 degrees, high 87 degrees, mostly cloudy in the morning, then partly cloudy

Like most full-time RVers, we receive our mail intermittently. We have an official address we use for voting and income tax purposes in Livingston, Texas. All of our mail goes to that address, and is forwarded to us whenever we call and have it sent to where we are. Since we don't want to pay any more than necessary to receive our mail, we have gotten rid of most of the mail we used to get. All our normal expenses are paid via the Internet or through automatic deductions from our checking account. Imagine our surprise today when we received our mail, and it weighed about ten pounds. When I reviewed the mail, I found that an investment company had sent us a bunch of unsolicited prospectuses for different mutual funds, apparently in an attempt to drum up some business during this slow economy. As far as I am concerned, this is the worst thing they could have done if they wanted any business from us. How receptive do you think I am to this company now?

It took me about 15 minutes to go through the mail. By the time I was finished, I was really steaming. I found that some information was duplicated, and none of it was of any use to us. I will be calling the company tomorrow to express my displeasure with them and their marketing efforts.

Most people do not know how to read an electricity meter. Actually, it's easy. Now, Alabama Power is making it even easier. In an effort to lower their costs, they are changing out all the meters to the digital meters, rather than the analog meters. The digital meters are really easy to read. Plus, I understand the meters can be read remotely. I guess that means no more meter readers walking through yards, getting the dogs excited. I wonder if this move saves Alabama Power any money? If so, are they going to reflect the savings in the monthly bills? I'm sure they'll do the right thing. Right?

Daylight comes here by 0530 hours, triggering my wake up mechanism. I'm finding that I wake earlier and earlier as daylight comes sooner. The only good thing about waking early is that I get my walk done earlier. I think I would rather sleep longer.

Below is a picture of the Painted Desert in Arizona that we took in 2004. I think beauty can be found in most places, if we take the time to look.

There wasn't much going on here today. It was one of those days where it was just slow. I'm about ready for some adventure. Maybe we can stir up something tomorrow.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Waxahachie, Texas: The Gingerbread City

Not all who wander are lost.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The Rain Maker

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 63 degrees, high 89 degrees, mostly cloudy skies, light showers

Remember in last night's post that I said the waxing of the truck was finished, and now the folks that live here could expect some rain? Well, the rain happened today, and there is more expected for the next few days. Maybe I should hire myself out as a rain maker. Go to areas where rain is needed, clean up the truck, and get the umbrellas out. Collect my money and move on to the next trouble spot. I wonder if I could adjust the amount of rain desired by varying the amount of truck cleanup?

After the morning walk and breakfast, I borrowed a 10-foot step ladder from Marsha so I could do a little wipe down of the slide-out roofs. When I cleaned the roof of the RV a couple of weeks ago, I couldn't reach most of the slide-out roofs. After thinking about how to get the remainder of the oak stains cleaned from the slide-out roofs, I decided to try a taller step ladder. My ladder is only six feet tall, so it was not nearly tall enough for what I needed to do. Marsha's ladder worked great, and now the entire roof has been cleaned. Thanks for the use of the ladder, Marsha.

The six foot ladder I have works for most tasks, but there are some things I need a ladder for that the current ladder is not adequate for. I have had the ladder for about six years. I'm going to look around for something that I can possibly fold up, yet give me the height I need. Any ideas? Just keep in mind that it needs to fold small enough that I can still carry it with me.

I almost forgot - I mowed the yard today before it rained. Maybe that, combined with cleaning up the truck, tipped the weather scales enough that the rain came today. So, if I had not mowed, maybe it would not have rained. Sounds like some tests are in order. Naaaahh!!

I helped Terri with a task in Tuscaloosa that took most of the afternoon. Without giving any details and respecting her privacy, I have to say it was a successfully completed task. We can only hope that more of her tasks are as successful.

Here's a picture of the Grand Canyon in Arizona that we took in April, 2004. Our first glimpse of the canyon gave us a feeling similar to being in church.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - St. Augustine, Florida: The Oldest Continuously Occupied European Settlement In The United States

Not all who wander are lost.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 62 degrees, high 87 degrees, mostly clear skies

The weather is starting to warm up as we get deeper into the spring. In order to get my morning walk out of the way before it gets too warm, I have been walking earlier. As a result, I'm usually back home before 0830 hours, unless I'm acting retired and sleep in a little. Like sleeping until 0630 hours.

It was time to wash our laundry, even though it's only been almost two weeks since we last did it. Just a joke. Actually, we ran out of laundry basket space, so that was our cue to get everything washed. I took everything to the laundry about 1100 hours, and had my choice of machines to use. No one was there except me for most of the time, unlike the other times we have been to that laundry. I'm not sure what caused business to be so slow today.

After I got home, it was time for some meditation. For some reason, I felt washed out. With meditation, I felt refreshed, and took care of some other little chores I needed to do. The last thing I did was finish putting wax on the truck. Folks in this area can get ready for some rain.

After a supper of lasagna and salad, we watched a couple of our favorite TV shows, NCIS and The Mentalist. We find that as we get older, the silly situation comedies hold little attraction for us. We would rather watch some of the cooking or self help shows. Wouldn't it be great if there was an RV show on?

Yesterday, when I was on I-59 going to Coaling, I saw the most RVs on the road that I have ever seen. There must have been 15-20 RVs for every mile I traveled, and all of them were going to the southwest, away from Birmingham. After thinking about where these folks were coming from, I came to the conclusion that they must have been at the NASCAR race held at Talladega over the weekend. Looks like there's still some discretionary income out there.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Pulaski, Tennessee: Yesterday’s Charm, Tomorrow’s Progress

Not all who wander are lost.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Coaling, Alabama

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 60 degrees, high 89 degrees, mostly clear skies

Coaling is a small community about 12 miles east of Tuscaloosa. I had heard and seen the name several times, and was intrigued by the name. Today seemed like a good day to check the area out, so I drove over there this morning. Carolyn decided she would stay at home and take care of a couple things that she wanted to do.

Coaling is located south of I-59/20 off US 11. The countryside is mostly rolling wooded hills, interspaced with fields. When I got to the center of the township, I found that it had a town hall, water utility, and a post office. It appears that several housing developments have built built over the past few years to accommodate growth spreading from the Tuscaloosa and Bessemer areas. The town is slow and quiet. Unfortunately, this was one of those excursions that I took that didn't quite turn out the way I hoped. Still, I know where Coaling is, and what the area is like. That's worth something. I tried to find information on the history of Coaling, but was unsuccessful.

When I got back into Tuscaloosa, I stopped by Sears to check out their truck tires. We're going to need new tires soon, and I'm looking around to see what's the best tire and deal. The tires I looked at today were Michelins, which are hard to beat. When I was given the price, I almost went into shock. How does well over $900 sound? Yuck! I'm going to keep looking a little longer.

When I left Sears, I stopped at the library to get more books, as well as some dvds. It's amazing how busy the library is in this time of recession.

After the library, I made a final stop to pick up a few groceries. By the time I got home, I was ready for some rest. As a break, we watched Michael Clayton, a movie with George Clooney. Not a bad choice, and it was nice to watch a movie that was serious instead of a stupid comedy. After supper, I put some more wax on the truck. That little job should be finished tomorrow.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Greenville, South Carolina: G-Vegas

Not all who wander are lost.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Fayette, Alabama Train Depot

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 58 degrees, high 87 degrees, clear skies

The place where I walk in the mornings has a lot of yellow honeysuckle plants blooming at the current time. Ummmm, what a great scent!

When we were in Fayette yesterday, I took some pictures of their old train depot. The first train to come through Fayette was in 1890. The last trains to come through Fayette were in the spring of 1996 and were believed by many residents living nearby to be Ghost Trains as they came through in the middle of the night and had been rerouted through Fayette bound for Mississippi due to track repairs on the current route.

At this time, there is no train service to Fayette. The train depot is being refurbished for use as a tourist attraction. Even though the depot has not been used for several years, I could see that the town has an asset that can be used to their advantage if the right vision is developed for it's use. It felt strange to see a fully functional train depot with no sign of railroad tracks. Unfortunately, I was unable to take any pictures inside because it was closed.

We have not had much opportunity to ride trains in our lives, but the few times we did, we enjoyed it. When we were in New York, we took the train from Fishkill to the city (New York) several times. What a great experience. We rode alongside the Hudson River, seeing the beauty along that waterway. We passed through old towns that we had heard about in history and legend. And the best thing about the experience was that I could sit back and enjoy the ride, instead of having to be alert while driving. We need to do that more.

We didn't do much today. I read the Sunday newspaper, which is about the only day of the week that I look at a newspaper anymore. In the evening, I put some wax on about one-third of the truck. And that was about it for today. Just a slow Sunday rest day.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Corpus Christi: Sparkling City By The Sea

Not all who wander are lost.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Fayette, Alabama

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 56 degrees, high 89 degrees, mostly clear skies

After spending the morning vegetating, we decided to take a drive north of Northport on US 43. By the time we started back home, we had made it all the way to Fayette, county seat of Fayette County, Alabama. Check out the gold dome on the courthouse. The county was formed in 1824, and was named after the Marquis de Lafayette.

Across the street from the courthouse was a county building that had these beautiful roses planted in front of it. Do you think we like flowers? Especially roses?

In front of the courthouse was a typical statue honoring the heroes of the Confederacy.

Fayette is a small town in the south that shuts down on Saturday afternoon. Check out this picture of the main street. Notice how little traffic there is. Nice little town.

The trip today was one of those that discovered a little unknown gem. Fayette may be a little hard to get to, but I'm sure it's a great place to live and raise a family.

While we were in Fayette, I happened upon the train depot. I'll write about the depot and share some pictures tomorrow.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Fayette, Alabama: The Best Kept Secret Of The South

Not all who wander are lost.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Tuscaloosa Train Depot

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 54 degrees, high 86 degrees, clear skies

Earlier this week, an earthquake was reported in Bibb County. The earthquake was apparently centered a few miles north of Centreville, at a depth of about three miles. No injuries or damage was reported, although people near the epicenter of the quake were able to feel the tremors. The area I'm talking about is approximately 25 miles from Tuscaloosa, so we didn't know about the quake until it was reported by the news media.

When I was out and about yesterday, I passed by the Tuscaloosa Train Depot. Aha, I thought, photo opportunity. I pulled in and took a few pictures as I walked around and looked at the building. The depot is used by Amtrak, since Tuscaloosa is a scheduled stop for the train. What was surprising to me was the general state of disrepair of the building. There is rotten wood outside, the building needs painting, the brickwork is cracking, and the grounds are trashy. The inside of the building is dirty, and the waiting room looks like a bus station, with four benches for passengers to sit on. The room does not project the kind of atmosphere that would tend to encourage people to ride the train. We have seen train depots in a lot of towns, and many of the towns have refurbished them to take advantage of the historical aspects of the depots to encourage tourism. Maybe the problem with the upkeep of this depot is that it is apparently not owned by the city. In a way, that's good because the city does have Amtrak service. However, I tend to think that Amtrak might get more riders if the facility was upgraded.

There's not much going on around here at the present time. I did get the truck cleaned up, so it's probably going to rain before long. Carolyn's vertigo symptoms continue to get better. We have some activities planned for when she feels confident enough to get out and about. In the meantime, I'll be doing little things as I find them.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Bishop, California: A Place To Play, A Place To Stay

Not all who wander are lost.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

University Of Alabama Arboretum

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 60 degrees, high 86 degrees, mostly clear skies

Carolyn's doctor's visit to follow up on the nodules on the calf of her left leg was today, and went well. The nodules continue to improve, and she will not have to see the doctor again until August.

We have been coming to the Tuscaloosa area to visit Terri and Thomas for more than 12 years. For most of that time, I have been wanting to visit the University of Alabama Arboretum. Since I didn't have much to do today, I decided to tour the arboretum.

The arboretum was founded in 1958 and is located just inside Tuscaloosa'a eastern city limits. It consists of 60 acres of mostly native woodlands. The land was donated by the federal government to help support the University's goals of promoting research and providing public education and service. The facility has several miles of trails that meander through the woods, as well as three greenhouses where plants are grown to plant on the property. Admission is free.

When I arrived, there was a school bus there that had brought in some little kids to learn about the facility. As I stepped out of the truck, I heard a tremendous din that seemed to carry on and on. As I walked from the parking lot toward the open air pavilion, I realized that the bus load of kids was taking part in a guided activity inside the pavilion that involved making all the noise. Apparently, they were pounding sheets of paper to make it look distressed. With all the enthusiasm the kids were displaying, there was no doubt in my mind the paper was going to look distressed.

Most of the trees and plants I saw were familiar to me, since the forest is a typical southern wooded area. What I didn't recognize were many of the flowers. Below are some of the specimens that I saw on the property and in the greenhouses.

The trip to the arboretum was a worthwhile activity, and would certainly be something that a family could enjoy. The only negative was the entry road, which was a one lane dirt road about a mile long. I'm not sure what I would have done if I had met another vehicle while entering or leaving. Still, I enjoyed the tour.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - West, Texas: Home Of Westfest!

Not all who wander are lost.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 40 degrees, high 74 degrees, mostly clear skies

When we're sitting in one place for an extended period of time, the worst enemies of the RV as far as keeping the outside clean are birds and bugs. I find that if I don't wipe the outside down every couple of weeks, the bird and bug stuff starts staining the paint, making it difficult, if not impossible, to get the stains off. If I wipe it down as I should, the paint will stay clean. So, this afternoon, I did the periodic wipe down. As I expected, the the RV looks like new again. I'll do it again in a couple of weeks.

Oh, no. I just realized I didn't wipe the tire rims down. They are much nicer rims than the old RV had.

Does the glove box in your vehicle function as a catchall? Ours does, and today I cleaned it out. I found napkins, spare salt and pepper packets, cds, receipts, crackers (where did those come from?), maps, a spare tire lock, keys for the trailer hitch receiver, a Texas State Parks pass, a post office box combination, an Allen wrench, a tire temperature sensor, a cell phone charger, a magnifying glass (used on the small print for maps), toothpicks....... I think you can get the idea. I took everything out of the box and started over. By the time I finished, most of the stuff had been thrown away or put away inside the RV. Now I have room to fill it up again with more trash and other junk.

Carolyn's vertigo seems to be getting better again. Tomorrow, she has to see the dermatologist about the areas on her left calf that she was having problems with during much of 2008. The areas seem to be getting better, and she is hopeful the doctor will release her. The appointment for tomorrow is taking the place of one she had to cancel in March when we were in Texas.

I want to thank Marsha for leaving the bag of magazines outside the door. We didn't know they were there until I had to go outside for something. She knows we like to read, and shares her magazines with us when she is finished with them. If that's not being green, I don't know what is. In addition to being a good neighbor.

Below is a picture of Cape Perpetua on the Oregon coast, taken during our trip to that area in the summer of 2004.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Raymond, Washington: The City That Does Things

Not all who wander are lost.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

New Picture On Opening Page

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 48 degrees, high 67 degrees, mostly cloudy early with sprinkles, then clear later in the afternoon

I placed a picture of the truck and new RV on the opening page. Check it out on the left. The light was not very good because it was early in the morning. Also, the setting is a restaurant parking lot. Not the best setting. As soon as we have a more scenic picture, I'll change it out.

In 2004, we took a long trip through the western states. The original purpose of the trip was to go to Alaska. Well, we never made it to Alaska. As we progressed through our trip, we kept finding all the scenic beauty and natural wonders that are present in the western US. For some reason, we never made it to Utah. I don't know how that happened. Anyway, we ran out of time as far as getting to Alaska in a reasonable time before the weather got too bad. One of our favorite places of the entire trip was the Oregon Coast. Below is one of the pictures we took on that trip. This location is the central Oregon coast, near Yachats, Oregon.

Looking back through our pictures from the 2004 trip brought back some great memories. I'll try to share some of those pictures from time to time.

I spent most of the morning helping Terri take care of some errands. By the time I got home, it was past lunch time. We hadn't been to McDonald's in about four weeks, so decided to stimulate the economy a little by eating there. I guess it's a good thing for them that we went, because they were not busy at all. Maybe our little bit of spending today kept McDonald's in business. Not!!

When we got home, I pulled the lawnmower out to see if I could figure out what was causing it to run so slowly. In spite of my best efforts, I could not find where to adjust the carburetor. I added some gas, and guess what? Smooth running lawnmower. Or at least good enough that I could get our little patch of yard mowed.

Tonight, Terri and Thomas came over and had pizza with us. We had a good visit, remembering good times with family, and those that have passed on. I enjoy these times with family.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Fruitland Park, Florida: Heart Of Central Florida

Not all who wander are lost.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Carolyn And Genealogy

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 53 degrees, high 68 degrees, partly cloudy skies

I heard on the radio this morning that every county in Alabama was under a tornado watch or tornado warning yesterday. Unfortunately, some people in the northern part of the state died as a result of the storms. Our weather consisted of a tornado watch for most of the afternoon and early evening, and heavy rain. When the weather is like this, we use our weather radio and the television to keep up with what's coming our way. If we need to, we seek better shelter. As much as we like the RV lifestyle, we're not foolish enough to think that the RV is a safe place to be when a tornado strikes.

Carolyn is still suffering a little from her episode with vertigo a few days ago. Since she is staying in, she has been working on her favorite hobby, genealogy. She seems to have few problems tracking most branches of our extended family, except when she tries to find information farther back than my grandfather on my side of the family tree. We have made jokes that my relatives must have been outlaws, because information on them is so difficult to find. Over the last couple of days, she did manage to find some information that shed a little more light, but almost immediately ran into a brick wall. What is really hurting the search is the fact that part of the records were destroyed by fire. In addition, some of the census workers in the past were less than diligent when recording information. I think I'll get her to show me how she does the searches for information. Who knows, maybe I can help her find my missing relatives.

I checked the area in the basement that was leaking, and which I repaired last week. Everything was still dry, so I put it all back together, which included hiding the plumbing. Looks like new. In addition, I installed some fishing rod holders so I could get my fishing rods off the floor of the basement. Next on my list of things to make my life a little easier is something to hang my extension cord on. That should be easy to do. The RV already has a place to hang the RV power cord when traveling.

We have a central vacuum system, and it is really powerful. The problem is that it seems like a lot of work to get the hose and accessories out of the basement, put everything together, hook it up to the vacuum outlet, do the vacuuming, take everything apart, and put it back in the basement. Maybe I'm making this harder than it needs to be, but I hope it starts getting easier.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Lander, Wyoming: Where Rails End And Trails Begin

Not all who wander are lost.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Pictures Of Our Home

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 63 degrees, high 74 degrees, mostly cloudy skies all day, heavy showers in the afternoon, tornado watch most of the afternoon and evening hours - not a good weather day

I have been reminded that I have done well as far as posting pictures of the outside of our new home. And I have also done well with pictures of the roof. However, I have failed to post pictures of the inside of our new home. Today, I will remedy that situation by posting pictures that the dealer sent to us via e-mail. Keep in mind that these pictures were intended primarily to show us the color scheme, decorations, and layout of the new RV. The one we eventually bought was similar, with the exception of the blues being replaced by brown. Thanks for the reminder, Kathy.

The two pictures below are of the kitchen area. I know it doesn't look very big, but it's plenty of room for us.

The next two pictures are of the kitchen sink area and the bedroom chest area.

Next we have the desk area or what Carolyn likes to call our media center, and the two easy chairs that we like a lot.

The picture on the left is the couch that can be made into a queen sized bed with an air mattress. The one on the right is another view of the kitchen area.

I think I better stop with these pictures because we don't the file to be so large that I can't post it.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Picayune, Mississippi: 100 Years Young And Still Growing

Not all who wander are lost.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

A Different Road

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 50 degrees, high 68 degrees, light showers early, mostly cloudy skies

Carolyn had a small vertigo attack last night. She was still feeling the effects this morning so we decided that the best thing to do was stay at home so she could recover. For those of you who have never suffered with this problem, thank your lucky stars. This problem makes Carolyn dizzy, sick at her stomach, and gives her headaches. By the end of today, she was starting to feel a little better.

I went for my morning walk, but walked a different route than I normally do. The city of Northport has a nice walking trail that uses the top of the levees that protect the city from floods by the Black Warrior River. The walking trail measures two miles in length, following the river for that distance. That is the trail I usually walk on, but sometimes, I get tired of seeing the same scenery all the time. This morning, I walked from the parking lot down to the dam and locks on the river, back to the parking lot, then over to the ball fields developed by the city. I guess it's like what makes us like to travel. Seeing new places and meeting new people. That's what this RVing life is about for us.

Our new computer is a HP Pavilion notebook with a 17-inch screen. So far, it has served us well. The biggest shortcoming the new computer has is that it does not have enough USB ports for all the stuff that we need to use from time to time. Currently, we have a wireless mouse plugged into one port, an external backup hard drive plugged into another port, and the AT&T air card plugged into the third port. If we want to use the printer, we have to disconnect something to free up a port. Sometimes, that's a little inconvenient. Today, I found a four port USB hub on sale at the WalMart Mall for $9.00. Using the four port hub gives us three more USB connections, and a lot more convenience.

We still have the old HP laptop that stopped working in November, which prompted us to buy the new one. I was able to get the old computer working by reloading the operating system, and we keep it up to date in case the new one gives us problems. Even though it's more than six years old, it still does the job if we need it. It's nice to have the spare.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Decatur, Alabama: Home Of America’s First Wave Pool

Not all who wander are lost.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Finished Cleaning Roof

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 51 degrees, high 78 degrees, clear skies (I could stand about 360 days a year of this kind of weather)

I checked the leak repair area in the basement again today, and it was still dry. we re-installed the valves, and will leave everything else as it is for a couple more days to see if any further leaks show up.

Yesterday, I placed our cell phone antenna on the ladder leading to the roof until we could decide on a permanent location for it. Putting the antenna outside and up in the air about 12 feet has made a real difference in the signal strength. Add in the signal amplifier, and we have fairly decent signal speed, considering how bad the normal cell phone signal is for this area. We went from a signal of -102 dB to a signal of -73 dB. Much better, thank you!

I started cleaning the oak stains off the roof yesterday after I had a brainstorm (sometimes it's called something else) that since the roof was new, the stains might come off using water and a rag. Here's some pictures of the roof before cleaning with water and a rag.

Here's what the roof looks like after cleaning. I'm pleased with the results, even though I don't like being on the roof. The first picture shows dirty roof versus clean roof, while the second picture is all clean roof. I'm not saying that everyone should do what I did, but it worked for me.

This evening, I cooked (Jerald's shorthand for we went out to eat). When we finished, we took a little ride through some of the beautiful countryside west of Northport. I have written about the beauty that we see in this area, especially when the evening is coming on. The light becomes soft and casts a beautiful soft color unlike anything we have seen anywhere else. It would be great if we could capture what we see and show everyone.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Bastrop, Texas: The Most Historic Small Town In Texas

Not all who wander are lost.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Roof Cleanup Started

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 45 degrees, high 72 degrees, clear skies - the kind of day I could stand all the time

I'm still trying to decide where to permanently mount our air card antenna on the new RV. In the meantime, I decided to place it on the ladder leading to the roof. This location puts the antenna about 12 feet up in the air, and I noticed an increase in the signal strength of about 10%. This means moving around on the Internet is faster. It's not 3G speed, but it's better than dialup.

I checked the water heater bypass valve area again for leaks, and so far, so good. Everything is still dry. I'll give it another day or two, then put everything back together.

When we were in Bay City, we were parked beneath some beautiful old oak trees. It was a nice setting, but when it rained, oak stained water would drip onto the RV. I was able to keep the sides clean, but couldn't do anything about the roof. Today, I decided to use a little water in a bucket and a rag to see if I could get the stains out of the roof material. Imagine my surprise when I started wiping the roof and the stains came off easily. It must be the new roof material that is making it easy to clean up. Over the course of about 45 minutes, I cleaned the stains off about a third of the roof. I'll do more tomorrow, and should finish in a day or two.

The University of Alabama is the flagship university of Alabama, having an excellent reputation for academics. Many people identify the university through it's major college football program, which has won many national championships. The team has been going through spring practice, which ends on Saturday with the annual A Day. A Day is a chance for the public to see what the team is going to look like in the fall, meet the players and coaches, and attend the last team scrimmage. People are already coming into town for the game, and it is expected 90,000 people will be at the game. There is no better indication of the pride and loyalty that people in the south feel for their favorite college football team than what will be happening here this weekend. I think I'll stay at home on Saturday so I won't have to fight the traffic. Or at least stay away from Tuscaloosa.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Miami Beach, Florida: America's Riviera

Not all who wander are lost.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Farewell, Hector

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 39 degrees, high 65 degrees, cloudy early, then clear skies

Here we are on April 15, 2009. Another year for paying taxes so our representatives and senators in Congress can spend our hard earned taxes on their little pet projects. Did anyone notice the TEA parties taking place across the country? It would be great if this grass roots effort could make a difference. Enough already on the spending and giveaways by this deadbeat Congress. If we ran our financial affairs like that bunch does, we would be bankrupt. Wait a minute, we are bankrupt as a nation. Even less reason for this mindless spending taking place.

I was reading an article the other day about the tax rebate that most people received last year. We didn't qualify for that little giveaway because of the money we made in 2007. According to what I read, the giveaway continued for 2009, and there was a possibility that we would qualify based on earnings for 2008. I contacted our CPA and found out that he had completely overlooked that line on the tax return (line 70). As a result, he is amending our 2008 return, which we should receive by the weekend. We'll sign it and send the amended return in. Who knows, maybe we'll get some of our tax money back. We can only hope.

This afternoon, I checked the water heater bypass valve that has been leaking, and it looks like the leak has stopped. I'm going to leave everything as it is for a couple more days to make sure there are not any more leaks.

I installed three roof vent covers today. The covers allow us to leave the vents open when it is rainy or windy. The job was not that hard, other than getting on top of the RV. I don't like being up there, even though I have to clean the roof and check the caulking.

Our daughter Lori lives in Bay City, Texas with her husband and two children. She is a science teacher in a middle school, teaching mostly advanced classes. Lori is one of the most gentle people a person will ever meet, and loves animals. She would never dream of harming an animal, and became a vegetarian when she was 15 years old because she didn't want to eat meat products. She has helped the humane society and adopted several animals over the years. When one of her pets dies, it is painful for her because she considers them part of her family. Today, her guinea pig Hector died after being ill and in great pain for about a week. Hector was taken to the vet twice, but the vet was unable to do anything for him. Lori called to tell us and was obviously grieving. Our hearts go out to Lori, but I'm sure she will fill the loss she is suffering now by giving more love to her remaining pets.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Nashville, Tennessee: Country Music Capital of the World

Not all who wander are lost.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Super Duper Pipe Dope

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 50 degrees, high 58 degrees, mostly cloudy skies

We had more rain last night, but the wind did not blow nearly as hard as it did Sunday night. The next few days should be rain-free and sunnier. We're ready!!

I spent part of the afternoon helping Terri with a meeting in town. One thing that keeps striking me about this area as I travel the roads and streets is how heavy the traffic is, considering there is supposed to be a recession going on. Maybe this area is not affected as badly as others.

When I got home, I checked the leaking fitting in the basement. Yep, it was still leaking, and there appeared to be some evidence of slight leakage from the two other fittings on the tee. I took everything apart again, used super duper pipe dope on the fittings, and put them back together. I have a feeling this was the fix I needed.

I ordered a roof vent cover for our Fantastic Fan last week. It arrived at the store yesterday and I picked it up this afternoon. Looks like I'll have some work to do tomorrow, when I'll also install the two vent covers I bought last week. The new covers will allow us to leave the roof vents open if the wind is blowing or there is rain.

I've been thinking about how to install the cell phone antenna we use to increase the signal for our air card. The antenna was installed on the ladder of the old RV, but I haven't decided where to put it on the new RV. The big issue is how to get the wire into the RV without coming in through a window. I may drill a hole in the floor and bring it in that way. No decision yet.

I saw an article today about a large upturn in delinquent taxpayers. The article stated that the IRS was going to be kinder and gentler when dealing with late payers than in the past. Is nothing sacred anymore? Whatever happened to the bullying, intimidating, overwhelming entity that huffed and puffed and blew away all of a person's defenses when they were late with their taxes? I'm blown away.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Dahlonega, Georgia: Azalea City

Not all who wander are lost.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Storm Last Night

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 64 degrees, high 75 degrees, partly to mostly cloudy skies

We had a humdinger of a storm pass through the area last night. Heavy rain, lightning, thunder, and sustained winds of greater than 40 mph with gusts to 58 mph. Several trees were knocked down across the area, with many limbs on the ground. We're expecting another front and more rain tonight, but it should not be as bad as last night. Why does it seem that the worse weather occurs at night when you can't see what's going on?

The new RV seems to handle storms like last night pretty well. It did not shake as much as the old one used to, and Carolyn slept through just about all of it. I, on the other hand, seemed to be awake for most of the storm because I sleep so lightly. Maybe the reason Carolyn sleeps so soundly is because she knows I don't, and if needed, I'll wake her up. As a result of not sleeping well, I felt tired most of the day. My morning walk seemed like work.

In the afternoon, I went to the library to return some videos, and check out more. On the way home, I stopped and picked up a few things we needed. When I got home, I meditated a little, which helped how I felt.

There is another little RV park located across the fence from us. A few days ago, a motor home moved in about 100 feet away. Over the last couple of days, I've noticed them working on their satellite dish. They were out again today. I have a little experience in setting the systems up, and it appeared they did not have everything right. I walked over and offered to help, which they gladly accepted. When I checked the setup, I found the mast was not plumb by more than a bubble in both directions. I plumbed up the mast and anchored the dish. Then I connected the signal finder to the dish, and found the signal. These folks can now watch TV. It's coming at a good time for them, because the man is having surgery on his neck on Wednesday. He is not allowed to be in a car for at least two weeks, so having something to watch on TV is a good thing.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - High Springs, Florida: Come Enjoy Our Good Nature

Not all who wander are lost.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 46 degrees, high 76 degrees, mostly clear until the afternoon, then cloudy with light showers.

Easter Sunday was always a special day for us when our girls were still at home. We remembered the reason for the day, and used the occasion to dress everyone to the nines. Lunch was usually a feast of baked ham, potato salad, deviled eggs, and other goodies. The day was usually capped off with an Easter egg hunt. These activities would be held at our home, at another relative's home, or a picnic at a park or lake. There were always eggs that couldn't be found. Weeks later, missing eggs would be found when the lawnmower hit them, or someone stepped on them. I love these memories.

This afternoon, we went out for a drive in the beautiful countryside. There are so many shades of green. Add in the different blooms from the trees, shrubs, and wildflowers, and it is a sight to see. It would be difficult to reproduce what we are seeing.

Americans can give thanks today for the safe release of the ship captain held hostage by the pirates. I was concerned that the pirates would be allowed to get away. The outcome was the only reasonable way for this episode to end, if the American people did not want this attack to be repeated. I think the pirates will think twice before attacking another American ship.

Has everyone filed their tax returns yet? Only three more days to get the returns in the mail.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Fort Worth, Texas: Funkytown

Not all who wander are lost.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Flower Hunting

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 50 degrees, high 60 degrees, cloudy skies

Have you noticed how much a 12 year old boy can eat? This morning, Thomas had eggs, grits, bacon, toast, butter, and strawberry jam for breakfast. That was after a little snack before breakfast. About every hour after breakfast, he was back in the kitchen, looking through the refrigerator and pantry and finding something else to eat. I keep reminding myself that he is a growing boy. If I tried to eat as much as he does, I don't think I would be able to waddle. He is as skinny as a rail, even with his appetite. It's a good thing he does eat well. Otherwise, the wind might blow him away. I can remember when I could eat like that. Ahhh, the good old days.

Some mornings when I go for a walk, I wonder how I'm going to finish the distance I set for myself. This morning was one of those mornings. Before I left home, my neck was stiff, as was my right shoulder. When I think of it, my whole body seemed stiff and sore. I persevered, however, and was glad I did. By the time I finished the walk, I was feeling looser and better, and was ready for breakfast.

I checked the leak repair on the water heater bypass valve this morning, and the results were inconclusive. It may have been my imagination, but there seemed to be the slightest hint of moisture on the valve. Since it was cool last night, it may have been condensation. I'm going to leave everything as it is until Monday, and check it again.

I went to the post office this morning to pick up our mail, which had been forwarded from Texas. I arrived at the post office at 1000 hours, and they had already closed the window. If they're not going to give any better service than that, why are they open on Saturdays at all? With all the complaints we hear from the post office about not having enough money to operate, why don't they suspend service for the weekends? I don't see the service as being all that good, so it wouldn't hurt us. Private businesses cut back when they need to or lay employees off. What is so sacred about the post office?

This afternoon, we went looking for dogwood trees because we like them so much.

Another of Carolyn's favorite flowers is the honeysuckle. Her absolute favorite is the pink honeysuckle.

The last picture of interest is this beautiful purple wildflower. I have no idea what the name is, but there's a lot of them up here in Alabama.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Cincinnati, Ohio: The Queen City

Not all who wander are lost.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Bad Weather

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 68 degrees, high 85 degrees, mostly cloudy skies, windy

There was severe weather north and east of us for most of the afternoon. Hail, high winds, tornadoes, heavy rain. This weather was coming from the same front that caused so many problems west and northwest of Alabama. Tomorrow is forecast to have better weather.

I found the leaking fitting on the water heater bypass valve. Taking the faulty fitting off, I looked at it with a magnifying glass, but didn't see any cracks or any other problem that might cause the leak. I went to Lowe's and bought another fitting and installed it. I'll check again tomorrow to see if the leak has stopped.

We mow the lot that we rent here in Coker, and we bought a mower last summer for that task. At the end of last summer, the mower started skipping badly, like there was water in the gasoline. Today, I drained the little bit of gas still in the tank and put new gas in. The mower started on the first pull, and ran fine for most of the time I was mowing the yard this afternoon. Then, it started acting as though the carburetor needed to be adjusted. I'll see what I can do with that before the next time to mow.

There's not much on TV on Friday nights that we care to watch, so we watched the movie Blood Diamond with Leonardo DiCaprio. I'm not a DiCaprio fan, but this was a pretty good movie. The plot involves diamonds that are mined in the parts of Africa where civil wars are being fought. The wars are financed by the mining of diamonds that are used to buy weapons. There's a message involved in the movie, but I chose to enjoy the action and scenery. Africa is a beautiful place, but it seems as though wars are always being fought over some cause or another. The people who suffer are the ones who want peace the most.

Thomas is spending the night with us. We set up the sleeper sofa with the air mattress for the first time. Talk about easy. Turn the switch on until the desired firmness is attained, put sheets and a blanket along with pillows on the air mattress, and go to bed. Tomorrow, we'll take everything off, turn the switch the opposite direction, suck the air out, and fold up the bed into a sofa. Done!

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Dahlonega, Georgia: The Heart OF Georgia Wine Country

Not all who wander are lost.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Bluebirds And Red Clover

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 55 degrees, high 75 degrees, partly cloudy

This morning, I noticed a bluebird flying near the RV. Then I noticed it again. I followed the bird to a bluebird nest located about 30 feet away from the rear of the RV. We can look out a couple of windows and watch the adult bluebirds feeding their young inside the nest. I tried to get some pictures, but they are just too fast for me. I found these pictures on the Internet that are a good representation of what we saw.
While trying to take pictures of the bluebirds, I took some pictures of the red clover that is blooming here. This flower seems to be the primary wild flower around here at this time, but there are several types of trees blooming in the yards, fields, and woods. We'll try to get pictures of those soon.

I checked on the leaking water heater bypass valve today, but was still unable to pinpoint where the leak is. I know there's a leak present, but it could be one or more of three locations. I isolated each point today with small plastic bags, and will check again tomorrow. If I have to, I'll change all three fittings.

We went to Sam's Club for a few things we needed. Maybe it's the time of the week, but they didn't seem very busy. There was plenty of traffic on the road, and the place where we stopped to buy diesel was very busy. All the news says that people are still losing their jobs, but we don't see any signs of that here.

It looks as though some unsettled weather is on it's way toward us. I hope it waits until daylight tomorrow. I like to see what the weather is doing. Carolyn would be happier, too.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Claxton, Georgia: Fruitcake Capital Of The World

Not all who wander are lost.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 32 degrees, high 75 degrees, clear skies, windy

When I got up this morning, I seemed to have gotten over whatever was making me feel under the weather yesterday. Then, late in the afternoon, I started sneezing, felt headachy, and my eyes were burning. I think there's stuff in the air outside that's causing these symptoms. I started treating the symptoms tonight, so maybe it won't last long.

Since I felt better this morning, I went for a walk. After getting back and eating breakfast, I started working on some chores outside. I found a puddle of water on the basement floor that I traced to either the water heater bypass valve or the winterization valve. I knew for sure that the water heater bypass valve was leaking, but was uncertain whether the winterization valve was leaking because it was below the other valve. I took everything loose, leaving the water lines hooked up, and separated the two valves so I could see whether the lower one was leaking. Then I went to the RV parts store over in Cottondale to pick up some parts.

When I got to the RV parts store, I talked to the serviceman about how to repair the valves. His recommendation was to do what I had already thought of, but it's nice to get reassurance on something as critical as a leak in the plumbing. The only problem was that they didn't have the clamps I needed. I did go ahead and buy two roof vent covers. In addition, I ordered a roof vent cover for the Fantastic Fan that we have, and it should be here by Monday.

For almost two hours, I went from store to store, finally finding the parts I needed for the repairs. When I got home, I checked the leaking areas again, and guess what? Dry as a bone. I could not find a leak anywhere. I decided to leave everything as it was, and check again later. When I checked about three hours later, I found just a hint of moisture on the suspect valve. I'm going to leave it overnight and see what is going on tomorrow. Hopefully, I can finish the repairs then.

The RV is under warranty, and I know I could get the manufacturer to make the repairs. The only problem is that in most instances, they will not go to a customer's location to make the repairs. They usually want the RV to be brought in and left with them until they can get to it. That doesn't work for us, and I think I can make these repairs, saving ourselves a lot of aggravation. I needed to go to the parts store to buy the vent covers, so was able to take care of two things at once.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Baxley, Georgia: A City Of Excellence

Not all who wander are lost.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

RV Park Closing

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 34 degrees, high 52 degrees, clear skies, windy

The start to the day was slow because we were tired from our travel of the last two days. Some kind of bug made me feel under the weather all day, preventing me from taking my normal morning walk. I don't get sick very often. When I feel bad enough to actually take a nap in the afternoon, that's a pretty good indication of how I feel. Even though I try to meditate every day after lunch, I usually don't sleep. Instead, I tend to tune everything out for a few minutes.

I managed to get out for a little while, going to the library in Tuscaloosa to check out some books. On the way home, I stopped at the WalMart Mall to pick up a few things we needed. The rest of the day was spent trying to get over whatever has grabbed me. I hope Carolyn doesn't catch it.

The place where we are staying is owned by some of the nicest people we have ever known. When we were looking for a place to stay while helping our daughter, they were nice enough to let us place our RV in their park. It was as though we were guided here by a higher power, because we would not have met these nice folks if we had not stayed here. Sometimes, however, it seems that people try to take advantage of their goodness. This morning, Ruth told me that they were closing the park on October 1 because it had become too much of a burden. We understand why they are closing the park, and can only say that we appreciate all the courtesies and help they gave us. Ruth, Marsha, and Chuck, rest assured that we will always consider you folks to be friends, and we will stop and see you when we're in the area.

Hopefully, I will feel better tomorrow and can get out and about.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - San Antonio, Texas: Alamo City

Not all who wander are lost.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Back In Alabama

Coker, Alabama

Weather: low 45 degrees in Livingston, Louisiana, high 49 degrees in Coker, Alabama, mostly cloudy skies, windy

We had another good day of travel, with heavy traffic that moved along without any delays. The wind blew steadily, but came at us from an angle that did not make driving difficult. Arriving in Coker before 1500 hours, it took us about 15 minutes to set up the RV. I still have to install the sewer hose, but that can wait a few days, since we usually travel with empty tanks.

The biggest problem I had with setting up the RV was getting a decent satellite TV signal. The signal would come in strong, then be lost completely. Finally, I realized that the connections were what was giving me problems. After cutting off a few inches of the cable and putting new connections on, the signal was good. I guess six years is the lifetime of a connection, because that's how long it has been since they were installed.

Tonight, our daughter Terri and grandson Thomas came over to visit and see the new RV. We had a good visit and dinner with them.

Remember a post I made a few weeks ago about me and wearing short pants? I said at that time if I started wearing shorts, winter was over. I am here to officially eat my words. Since that post, I have worn my shorts several days, but we have had some really cold days, also. Here in Coker tonight, there is a freeze warning. That doesn't sound like winter's over, does it?

We have much to do in the next few days. I hope the weather warms up.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Austin, Texas: City of the Violet Crown

Not all who wander are lost.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Slogging Along On I-10

Livingston, Louisiana

Weather: low 70 degrees in Bay City, Texas, high 85 degrees in Livingston, Louisiana, partly cloudy skies

We had breakfast with Lori and her family before leaving Bay City this morning. After our good byes, we were on the road by 0900 hours. Traffic was light until we got onto I-10 at Bay Town, east of Houston. Then it was fairly heavy the rest of the day, but flowed right along. We made good time, stopping for the night about 1700 hours near Livingston, Louisiana.

Over the last 20 years, we have driven I-10 between Florida and Texas several times a year. For most of that 20 years, I dreaded driving on I-10 in Louisiana because the road was in such terrible condition. What a turnaround Louisiana has made with this road. It is almost completely rebuilt, and is a pleasure to drive, except near some of the larger cities. I estimate that only about 30-40 miles would be considered rough at this time. Now, if only Texas would repair their portion of the road.

As I have written on the blog recently, we have a new RV. Here's a picture with the RV hooked up to the truck. We have lived in it long enough now that we can say that this new home is a far cry from the old RV. There is so much more comfort, convenience, insulation, storage, and on and on in the new home, we sometimes pinch ourselves to make sure we're not dreaming. The reason we waited so long to buy a new home was that we could not find something that grabbed us like this one does. The wait was worth it.

That's about it for today. There's not much to say about a drive on the interstate, except it's a quick way to get somewhere.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Livingston, Louisiana: LIVINGston PROUD!

Not all who wander are lost.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Found A New RV Park For The Fall

Bay City, Texas

Weather: low 60 degrees, high 80 degrees, cloudy skies, windy

We drove down to Palacios this morning, looking for another place to stay when we return to visit. Our search led us to a park located on the waterfront, looking out at the Gulf of Mexico. After talking to the owner and looking over the facilities, it looks as though we have found a place that will meet our needs. When we come back in the fall, we'll see what adventures we can find in the new location. The new park is located near the shrimp and fishing boats. We should be able to get our fill of fresh seafood.

The only problem I see with the new park at this time is it's location near the water and the salt that will probably be deposited on the truck and RV. We've talked about staying there for a while, so we'll work through any salt issues. At least for a time. We may get tired of it in a hurry.

We visited with Lori and her family for a couple of hours this afternoon. She had to work at her school earlier in the day, where she is a science teacher. They had a tutoring session for students who are trying to do well on the state standardized tests. Tonight, Lori and her family came to the RV, and we had a good visit.

Sometimes it's hard to believe how fast our grandchildren are growing up. Julian will be a senior this next school year, while Zoe will be entering the seventh grade. Thomas, our grandson who lives in Alabama, will be entering the eighth grade. Blink your eyes and they're grown.

We'll be leaving here tomorrow, on our way to Tuscaloosa, Alabama to visit our other daughter Terri and her son Thomas. Before we leave tomorrow, we'll have breakfast with Lori and family. We'll be sad about leaving, but happy about seeing Terri. It's too bad our girls live so far apart.

In the meantime, on to other adventures.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - McDade, Texas: Home Of The Watermelon Festival

Not all who wander are lost.

Friday, April 3, 2009

Another Golf Day

Bay City, Texas

Weather: low 45 degrees, high 72 degrees, clear skies, windy

Before I go any further in tonight's post, I would like to show everyone what our nephew Scott and his wife Chriselda sent us in the mail. When we saw them in Taylor about three weeks ago, we told them about our new RV that we had ordered. Chriselda told us that they were sending us something in the mail, and she hoped we would like it. Like it? We love it! Look at what we received from them. Isn't this the most thoughtful gift for someone who loves nature like we do? When we're wondering what kind of bird that was, this book on birds of Texas and the binoculars will help us identify it. In addition, when we're looking out across a beautiful vista, we'll be able to see farther and more clearly. Thank you, Scott and Chriselda. We hope to see you in the fall.

We didn't do much in the way of work today, choosing to take things easy. We met Terrell and Kathy for lunch at Chili's, and had a great time. Since the weather was so nice, Terrell and I decided to play golf. It's too bad the golf didn't match the weather. I have several reasons why I didn't play well, including my elbow hurt, my shoulder was a little tender, I have a blister on my hand, my clubs felt out of balance..... I could keep on for awhile, but I think you get the idea. All days on the golf course are good. Some are better than others. The best things about this day on the course was the weather, and spending time with my brother.

When I got home, it was time to go have supper with Lori and her family at a Chinese restaurant. The food was good, and I saw another old friend I used to work with. It's nice to see these folks I used to work with, and it seems like every time I go to town, I see someone I know.

Tomorrow, we will start getting the RV and truck ready to travel. Our plans are to leave here on Sunday, going back to Tuscaloosa, Alabama for a visit with our daughter Terri and grandson Thomas. I'm not sure how long we will be there, but we plan to go to Florida in May to visit family there. A little traveling ahead of us in the near future.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Memphis, Tennessee: Bluff City

Not all who wander are lost.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Visit With An Old Friend

Bay City, Texas

Weather: low 65 degrees, high 79 degrees, cloudy with light showers early, then clear skies, very windy

By mid-morning after the light rain showers stopped, the wind had started blowing hard - again. Hard, as in blowing the bark off the trees, paint off the cars, lines off the road..... Do you get the idea? I'm glad we were not trying to move the RV today.

We seem to be eating at home more than in the past. For a time, we seemed to eat out a lot. Lately, we have decided that the quality of the food at most restaurants is not as good as what Carolyn can prepare. As a result, we have to make more trips to the grocery store. Today was grocery shopping day, with stops at the WalMart Mall and HEB. I was disappointed in the service we received at the Mall. The store in Bay City is one of the nicest WalMarts we have been to. When we were ready to check out today, only two registers were open, and people were lined up at both of them. What's with that? When we went to HEB, the service was better, with no waiting in line.

I finished wiping the RV down, getting the oak stains off before they set in the paint. Here's a picture of our lot at Riverside RV Park, located along the Colorado River just outside Bay City. Note the big oak trees hanging over the RV. Every time it rains, the trees drop oak stains on whatever is beneath them. In this case, our RV is the target.

As I mentioned, the RV park is located along the Colorado River. I have seen fishermen catch salt water fish here, but the main fish caught are catfish. This is a city owned park, and my biggest complaint is that cell phone service is spotty and slow. The cell phone signal is weak and the amplifier is helping, but not enough to have worry free service.

This evening, an old friend from my working days came by to visit. Bill Parish and I worked together on several projects, and the last time was about 22 months ago. It was good to see Bill again and catch up on what has been happening with him and other mutual friends. Who knows, we may work together again.

Tonight, we visited with my brother Terrell and his wife Kathy. She has been fighting cancer and so far, is holding her own. They are excited about buying a house in Tennessee, but don't plan to move for several months. We're excited for them, and it gives us another place to visit where family will be located. We made plans to have lunch with them at Chili's tomorrow.

A good day today, when we saw an old friend we like a lot, as well as visited with family. Outstanding!

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - West, Texas: Czech Point Of Texas!

Not all who wander are lost.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Blood Donation

Bay City, Texas

Weather: low 56 degrees, high 70 degrees, cloudy, windy

For some reason, today started slowly. I didn't do my morning walk until after 0900 hours, and by the time we ate breakfast, it was after 1030 hours. Since we were about to be overrun by laundry needing to be washed, we decided to go to the laundromat.

Before we left home, I checked the Internet to see where a blood drive was being held. If enough time has passed since my last blood donation, I usually try to donate blood wherever we are. The closest location today was in West Columbia, about 22 miles away. After finishing the laundry, we drove to West Columbia, where I made a pint deposit. At the time I decided to go there, I didn't know that this particular drive was being held to benefit an undercover policeman that was shot and injured seriously in the line of duty. He is in critical condition, and his condition is touch and go. I hope my little donation helps him. My donation was the sixth of the day, and their goal was 33 pints.

After getting home from giving blood, I was a little tired, so I performed some meditation for a short time. It's amazing what meditation can do for me. When the meditation was finished, I did some clean up of the outside of the RV.

Several days ago, we had a light shower pass through the area. The site we are parked on is almost completely shielded from the sun by huge oak trees. Normally, it would be assumed that trees are a good thing. The bad thing about trees is that they drip water when it rains, and that water has picked up oak stains on it's way to the RV and ground. Those stains are transferred to the RV, and will be set in the paint if they're not wiped off. I spent some time wiping the stains, but still have more to do tomorrow. I'm trying to stay ahead of the dirt on the outside of the new home.

Tonight, we visited with Lori and her family. We enjoy our time with them, and made plans to eat at a Chinese restaurant Friday evening. Lori has to go to Houston after work tomorrow to continue her master's level classes, so we won't see her tomorrow.

The new amplifier for the air card still seems to be working well. There are times when the signal is weak, but overall, I am happy with the results. I should have bought the amplifier sooner. I'm going to try to send some pictures out in tomorrow's post.

More later, be safe.

Today's Town - Starkville, Mississippi: Starkvegas

Not all who wander are lost.