And the road goes on forever...

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Last Fling

Time has passed so quickly this month and of course, been bittersweet. The hours with Mom are so precious. I deliberately haven’t been on-the-go too much beyond taking her out for a few shopping trips; instead spending time chatting, making meals together and playing Mexican Train (her favorite) nearly every night. I did manage to Craigslist some items Marc wanted sold and raised enough cash to cover some of the expenses of my return to WI. I also babysat the installation of her new heating system and thermostat and she is well on her way to understanding how that will work. 

Unfortunately, she still refuses to give up her wood stove, saying that does a better job on keeping her old bones warm. Given her age, my brother and I were hoping to do-away with the whole buy and split and stack and pack thing with the wood. Oh well, since he is the one left to do it, he will need to deal with it and her stubborn refusal. 

On their last visit my son and daughter-in-law made a fabulous dinner for us last evening and I indulged in all my seafood favorites! He used to be a chef so he easily whipped up homemade Hollandaise to top off King salmon stuffed with Dungeness crab, smothered in Brie then baked to perfection. As if that wasn’t enough heaven, I also bought 24 fresh oysters which I BBQ’d and we washed it all down with Hillary’s homemade margaritas on the rocks. The temperatures even cooperated for us to do a little “porch sittin’”.
Early on Tuesday I will start the long slog east; following for a time the path through Idaho taken by daughter Rachael and Eric as they make their move to Dallas. They leave very early Monday morning having wrapped up everything in Portland and watched as the moving company left with all their possessions save for what would fit in her Subaru for the trip. I’m sure we’ll be comparing texts each evening as to our travel days, although mine will be much longer than theirs and certainly much slower paced. The weather forecast doesn’t sound particularly optimal with lots of rain showers for the first few days and maybe even some snow showers in Montana. It’s still changeable spring in the high country. 

This my last entry for awhile, since I had internet at the house turned off and have not as yet scheduled its re-installation. Plus, life will be hectic for a time given all there is to catch up on at home, like grass cutting and weed pulling and planting a garden!

Friday, April 14, 2017

Travel North and Birthday Bash

It was a warm Saturday morning as I pulled away from our Yuma lot with my casita and cats behind me and hit the road north. I had a relatively easy first day, stopping just outside of Searchlight in a small RV park for my first night out on my own. All went well the second morning too, getting through the dreaded Las Vegas but north of there I nearly got run off the highway by a passing motorhome and toad who misjudged oncoming traffic as he was passing me and very nearly swiped the front end of my new truck and barely missed the oncoming car. That night was spent in a Hawthorne, NV casino parking lot where they even provided free dump and dumpster. An early start the next morning brought me through Reno and Hwy. 395 north which much lessened the traffic and country roads allowed me to hit Klamath Falls, OR before tiring out at the Klamoya Casino parking lot. Bend was an easy hop in on Hwy. 97 the next morning, a Tuesday, so all in all I made good time I figure, as my first towing effort with 1173 miles done in three days and three hours. 

The kitties were not happy campers in the least and I had a lot of problems with young Spirit in calming her down and finally (after a week!) getting her to eat again. And it took a vet visit at that. The trailer proves to be very confining for all four so I am not looking forward to the long haul homeward when I leave here. 

Time is flying as preparation for the two-day family reunion/birthday bash took up much of last week and out of town company started arriving two days in advance. It was great seeing everyone and I think my mother was very moved and shocked at the surprise appearance of her sister Myrna, whom she had not seen in seven years, which we had kept a secret. Myrna had to leave on Mom’s birthday but not before partaking of the superior baby back rib and chicken BBQ put on by my son and daughter-in-law.

It was sad to bid Rachael and Eric adieu as we don’t know when we will see them again given their move shortly to Dallas, TX. My daughter has gone from working in cyber security for Nike to the same type position at the headquarters of PepsiCo. They will be moving on April 22nd, off to new adventures and at a salary level that will allow them to finally purchase their own home so they are off-the-chart excited.
My time has been filled with preparing Craigslist ads, helping mom and doing bunches of research for a new heating system and running her around town since she finds it difficult to drive here now with all the traffic. Bend has become a mess—the type usually found in crowded California cities and I find I often employ what Marc refers to as “The Law of Superior Tonnage”. In other words, when the small Yuppie-mobiles refuse to allow me in or to merge, I merely come on out anyway. Works every time! I just don’t get the “freeze them out” mentality of Western drivers after driving so long in WI where everyone automatically and courteously moves to the left to allow you to merge. God get me home soon!!!!

Seriously though, I see so many changes for the worst since I was last here nearly four years ago. The whole world wants to move to Bend and I can hardly wait to get out of here—it’s just maddening now with its overcrowding, its complete Yuppie mentality and designer beers, its sky-high housing costs with no availability for new transplants, and its Goddamn small roundabouts at practically every intersection. They used to call it “Poverty with a View” and I don’t see as it’s changed much excepting now they could probably also throw in “The place of the HAVES and the HAVE NOTS. There is no middle ground in Bend; you’re either filthy rich or you are nothing. What’s comical about this whole thing is that when my mother passes on, my brother and I are going to be left with ten acres in this nirvana that others would kill to own since the average lot size is now 4500 square feet and goes for $265,000. But alas, her property is not in the urban growth boundary so cannot be split—otherwise we’d retire as millionaires. Ah, what popularity does to a place is shameful. One of the best decisions of our life was to leave this place in the rear view mirror.

More to follow.