1,000 Foot Ore Freighter, Soo Locks, MI

1,000 Foot Ore Freighter, Soo Locks, MI

Near Peggys Cove, Nova Scotia

Near Peggys Cove, Nova Scotia

Colorful Truck Sales, Weed, CA

Colorful Truck Sales, Weed, CA

Hollywood Sign

Hollywood Sign

Mackinac Bridge, MI

Mackinac Bridge, MI

Pelicans, Grays Harbor, WA

Pelicans, Grays Harbor, WA

Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park

Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park

Pet-Sitting For A Career?

While Jan was doing some laundry this morning here at our Key West Inn, she got to chatting with a gentleman named Kevin who said he’s a professional pet-sitter.

He stays days/weeks/a month or more in his client’s homes, taking care of the pets, not only feeding and walking them, but giving them their medicine and even insulin shots. He also keeps the house clean and straightened up.

He doesn’t advertise, but just gets jobs by word of mouth. And incredibly, he stays busy enough that he doesn’t have a home or apartment. When he has a few days between clients, he just stays here at the Key West Inn.

A new career for our old age?

We were on our way back over to Gulf Shores about 2 this afternoon, with our first stop at one of Jan and Claudia’s favorite gift shops, Tallulah’s Treasures in Orange Beach.


Jan’s been coming here for at least 30 years, starting back when it was called Tootie’s Yellow Broom. And as usual, Jan found a couple of nice things, including a shirt and a pair of earrings.

Then it was on back up the beach to have dinner at DeSoto’s Seafood Kitchen once again. This has been one of our go-to places for years and it’s just as good as always. Or maybe even better.

We all got the Fried Seafood Platter, with fish, shrimp, oysters, and crab claws. Jan and I went with the Fried Green Tomatoes and the Sweet Potato Casserole, while Claudia went off the reservation and got Cole Slaw instead of the Sweet Potato Casserole.

Her loss.

And here’s my two beautiful companions.

And here’s Jan showing off her new Tallulah’s earrings.

Sure looks like they’re hand-painted.

Finishing up, I’ve posted several times recently about Big Bob Gibson’s BBQ up in Decatur, and all the awards they’ve won over the years, including being listed on a number of 10 Best BBQ Places in the US. And of course, most recently, they won Best BBQ Pork Shoulder at the BBQ World Championship in Memphis.

Well, now they’re being honored again.

Alabama barbecue legend selected for national BBQ Hall of Fame

One of the legends of Alabama barbecue, the late Robert “Big Bob” Gibson of Decatur’s Big Bob Gibson Bar-B-Q, will be inducted into the national American Royal Barbecue Hall of Fame later this year.

Gibson, who is credited with inventing Alabama white barbecue sauce, joins two other posthumous inductees and four living inductees in the Barbecue Hall of Fame’s Class of 2024.

Well deserved!

Thought For The Day:

Having a dirty mind makes ordinary conversations much more interesting…and much more fun!

Your Retro-Preview Highlights –

2010 – Bloody Marys and Northern Exposures

2013 – Lake Tahoe, Donner Pass, and BBQ

2015 – Anything But Goodyear . . .

And Now On To Today’s Retro-Blogs.™

May 22, 2009

Palm Beach

Well, we did make up to West Palm Beach today with no problems except for a lot of rainy weather.

We got an early start (for us) about 8 am since we knew it would take us about 3 hours just to get off the Keys since so much of the drive is at 45 mph speed limits and even 35 mph in places.

We got back into Homestead about 11 am and parked the coach in the WalMart parking lot.

After unhooking our toad, we headed over to GoldCoaster RV Park where we stayed last week to pick up some mail that hadn’t made it before we left for the Keys.

After that, we had lunch at Sonny’s BBQ before heading north to West Palm Beach.  The rains really picked up after we left Homestead and followed us all the way to West Palm. But luckily it slacked off just as we arrived at the park so I didn’t get soaked setting up.

We pulled into the Palm Beach Gardens RV Park about 3:30 pm and got things plugged in and set up.

The friends we were here to see (the same ones who met us in Key West last weekend) showed up about 6:30 pm and we headed out to Riviera Beach to eat dinner at a restaurant at the marina.

After that, we came back to our coach and visited for a while.

May 22, 2010

Bloody Marys and Northern Exposures

Be sure and check out yesterday’s post which I didn’t get posted until this afternoon due to a bad Internet connection in Westport, WA

Also forget to mention in yesterday’s post about the Bloody Marys that Al and I had at The Half Moon Bay restaurant last night

First off, they use peppered Stoli Vodka so it’s really hot and spicy. And they also include all the 5 basic food groups. In addition to the normal stalk of celery, we got a piece of Slim Jim, a piece of cheese, two steamed green beans, a pearl onion, a green olive, a cherry tomato, a boiled shrimp, and a lemon slice. By the time you finish the drink, you’re almost too full for supper.


We left the American Sunset RV in Westport, WA about 9 am after saying our goodbyes to our good friends, Al and Adrienne Cox. We first met them in Fairbanks, AK two years ago and have kept in touch ever since.

We only went about a quarter mile down the road where we stopped and got diesel at a local Chevron station. The station canopy said the height was 12’ 4”.  Since the coach is 12’ high, I didn’t want to take a chance on scrapping it, so I dumped the airbags which dropped the coach height about 6”.

The only real problem I had is one I’ve had before. Slow fuel pumps. It took about 20 minutes to take on 115 gallons.

Finally, we got back on the road and headed toward Cle Elum, WA, 195 miles away, our stop for the night.

About 11:30 am we stopped for lunch at the Super Buffet Chinese Buffet in Du Pont, WA, about 15 miles west of Tacoma. We saw their sign along the Interstate and decided to give it a try. We were just hoping we would be able to find a place to park the rig. And we lucked up. We found a place right beside the restaurant.

And the buffet was really good. Maybe the best one since Yuma.

About 40 miles before Cle Elum we started seeing the mountains of Snoqualmie Pass, complete with a lot of snow.


We got into Whispering Pines RV Park in Cle Elum about 2:30 pm and got set up.

Well, everything got set up, except the satellite dish. There were a lot of trees and I just couldn’t get a good sight line.

So I gave up for a while, and about 3:45 pm we headed about 5 miles away to Roslyn, WA.

Roslyn’s claim to fame is that it was the town of Cicely, AK in TV’s Northern Exposure.

And it’s all still there.

Ruth Anne’s store is still a store.


Dr. Joel Fleischman’s office is now a gift shop. We came here because Jan wanted to replace some of her Northern Exposure T-shirts that she wore out since we were here two years ago


And the iconic Roslyn Café is…still a café.


And of course, Chris’ KBHR studio, which still seems to be a TV show set.


And the Brick is still the Brick, although it looks completely different inside from what it did on the show.


We got back to the site about 4:45 and I started working on the satellite again. Finally, I found a place about 50 feet out in front of the coach where I could get a signal through the trees.

Now Jan’s happy, so all’s right with the world.

Tomorrow we will head out for Coeur d” Alene, ID for a couple of days.

May 22, 2011

Fresno and Landon . . .

I got up a little early this morning, about 9:45, because we weren’t sure exactly what time we’d be Landon-Skyping.

While we were waiting I fixed coffee and had a muffin for breakfast, then about 11:30 I went down to the office to re-up here at the park until the 31st.

I got back just in time to answer our Landon-Skype call.

Landon was his usual rambunctious self, showing how he could pull himself upright with no problems. The way he’s going he’ll be walking soon.

Video call snapshot 93

Video call snapshot 92

Video call snapshot 95

Video call snapshot 96

Video call snapshot 100

Video call snapshot 101

Video call snapshot 104

Video call snapshot 107

Video call snapshot 115

Video call snapshot 116

Video call snapshot 118

Brandi said Landon said “Mama” yesterday, but this morning he mostly just squealed and laughed a lot. He always seemed to react to us on the screen when we talked to him, so hopefully he’ll know us when we see him in August at our family reunion in Illinois.

We spent about 20 minutes online with Landon, Brandi, and Lowell before setting up our next call in two weeks and saying our goodbyes.

A little later Jan fixed us a lunch of cheese toast using some great bread, and Salt & Cracked Pepper potato chips. Really good.

About 2 pm we headed down to Fresno about 35 miles away for some shopping. Our first stop was Sam’s Club for some staples. Next up was World Market where Jan did some shopping, before repeating the thing at a Bed, Bath, & Beyond right done the road.

By this time it was about 4:30 and we were getting hungry so we decided to try the New China Buffet, listed as one of the best Chinese buffets in Fresno. It turned out to be very good . . . and also very busy.

Leaving the buffet, our last stop was at a nearby Wal-Mart before heading back to the Park of the Sierras. But we did stop off and get cappuccinos before getting home about 7:30.

May 22, 2012

A New, New Record . . .

I’ve been trying to upload this blog for about 3 hours now with no luck. I don’t know if Verizon is working on things or what. But every night a little after midnight, I lose data service on both my Droid and my aircard. Normally I get it back between 3 and 4am, but not tonight. Here it is 5:30 and still no service. Hopefully, it will come back before I knock off at 7.

Today (Tuesday) was pretty laidback with only a normal amount of traffic (70-80 vehicles), but yesterday was a madhouse.

For some reason, the pad for this site is apparently smaller than normal, and yesterday they had so many big trucks coming in carrying casing pipe, drilling mud, water, and other fluids, that they didn’t have enough room on the pad, and so had to start restricting access to 4 rigs at a time.

Believe me, truck drivers do not do “waiting patiently” very well,

In fact, not at all.

At one time, I had nine rigs parked along the side of the road waiting their turn to get in. And it really didn’t help things when the Company Man called me and said to send in a couple of the rigs from the middle of the pack, because their drilling mud was needed NOW.

I thought I was going to have a riot on my hands. The drivers were yelling and jeering at the two trucks that got to jump the line, and the two drivers were yelling back. Finally about 6:30pm we got caught up and things settled down. I should have gotten extra pay as a traffic cop/anger management consultant.

Our previous vehicle record was 128 vehicles as our old site was shutting down before moving here. Our new record is now 148 for this past Monday. Still don’t know yet if this is normal for a new rig starting up.

They do seem to be making good progress here. The hole is down to about 4800 feet, but the computer said the bit was at about 200 feet. Don’t know if they’re putting down casing, or just changing bits. I’ll try to find out tomorrow.

Looks like our days are now permanently in the 90’s. It helps that the humidity pretty much stays in the 20% range. Tractor Supply sells some misting units that I’m going to check out for when it gets hotter.

It’s still very comfortable at night though, with temps in the low to mid 60’s. In fact I usually wear a long sleeve shirt at night for a little warmth.

May 22, 2013

. . . just to watch him die.

We headed out on our 150 mile day trip about  8:30 this morning, but our first stop was only a few miles up the road for breakfast at Denny’s.

Back on the road by 9:30 we drove up the west side of Lake Tahoe on SR89 for about 30 miles until we came to Tahoe City. Along the way, we passed a lot of spectacular scenery overlooking Lake Tahoe.

Tahoe Day Trip 1

Tahoe Day Trip 2

Tahoe Day Trip 3

Tahoe Day Trip 4

At one turnout near the head of Emerald Bay, we looked down on Vikingsholm, a Scandinavian castle built by Lora Knight in 1929.

Vikingsholm 1

One of the first summer homes built on Lake Tahoe, it welcomed celebrities such as Will Rogers over the years.


Besides the castle, Mrs. Knight also had built a rustic 16 x 16 ft. teahouse on Fannette Island, the only island in Lake Tahoe.

Vikingsholm Teahouse 1

Located at the highest point on the island, all of the stone had to be ferried by boat over to the island.

Vikingsholm Teahouse 2

It seems like every turn just brought more great scenery into view.

Tahoe Day Trip 5

A little way before we reached Tahoe City we encountered these two really neat old cars.

Tahoe Day Trip Car 1

Don’t know what they are.

Tahoe Day Trip Car 2

Reaching Tahoe City, we turned away from the lake and headed north to I-80 and Truckee. Reaching Truckee, we turned west for a few miles and ended up at Donner Pass State Park.

The museum covered not only the Donner Party, but also the many emigrants who passed through here on their way to California.

Unfortunately, because of the way the many displays were lit, I wasn’t able to get any good photos. But they did have this model Conestoga wagon loaded up with typical supplies.

Donner Museum 1

And this was something I’d never seen or heard of before. It’s a snowshoe made for horses.

Donner Museum 2

Leaving the museum, we headed down the nature trail that led toward the area where some of the Donner party wintered over from November 1846 to February 1847.

Donner Museum 4

None of the cabins survived, but this rock was the wall and fireplace of one of them.

Donner Museum 3

This monument, near the museum, commemorates the hardships suffered here, and also marks the spot of another cabin. The height of the monument base, at 22 feet, marks the depth of the snow in the area that winter.

Donner Museum 5

Leaving the area and heading east toward Reno, we thought about the irony of the fact that the Interstate I-80 now runs along the route that the Donner party was trying to take.

Getting into Reno, we turned south toward Virginia City, climbing about 2000 feet up into the mountains, with another set of great views along the way.

Virginia City 1

Virginia City 2

Coming into Virginia City, we found a quaint, old-fashioned town clinging to the mountainside. Most of the town buildings date from after the big fire of 1875, when most of the town burned to the ground. Only one partial block was left standing.

Virginia City 7

Over 2000 buildings were lost, leaving 10,000 people homeless. But the entire town was rebuilt in less than a year.

Our first stop was “The Way It Was” museum. Housing thousands of artifacts from Virginia City’s heyday, it details many facets of the townspeople’s lives.

Virginia City 4

Home of the fabled Comstock Lode, the many mines around the area yielded up over $400 million dollars of gold and silver. That’s billions in today’s dollars.

One of my favorite exhibits was this scale model showing only 250 miles of the interconnected 800 miles of mineshafts underneath the town.

Virginia City 5

Sorry for the so-so photos, but the sunlight coming through a skylight washed it out.

Virginia City 6

Next, we took a tram ride around town, with our tour guides pointing out the many mansions in the area, and also the many brothels. Unfortunately a number of places we wanted to see were still closed for the winter, and won’t reopen until this weekend.

One thing I did see was a new personal record for a mountain grade. My previous best had been 12% going through Canada, but that was in the RV.

But 15%, even in the truck was pretty good.

Virginia City 3

Leaving Virginia City, and getting back to Reno about 4pm, we stopped off at Famous Dave’s BBQ for dinner. And as usual, really, really good. But Jan and I were both somewhat disappointed that this franchisee doesn’t have the Firecracker Green Beans as a side dish. Bummer. They’re really good.

After dinner, Wal-Mart, and Sam’s Club, I stopped off at a Home Depot to pick a new drinking water faucet for our kitchen counter.

Home Depot Drinking Faucet

Hopefully, this one will last as long as the first one did.

Getting home about 8:30, we were both pooped after a long but very fun day. But tomorrow will be a do-nothing day, let me tell you.

When we got home, we found Landon’s school class photo that Brandi had sent over. That’s him on the upper left. Love those plaid shorts he’s got on.

Landon's School Picture 2013

May 22, 2015

Anything But Goodyear . . .

Wednesday 5/20

Jan and I were on the road by 6am, heading for Vandalia, IL 1534 miles away. We didn’t want to miss a long-scheduled family reunion with Jan’s sister Debbie and her family, so a road trip was in order. We planned on making it in two days, stopping for the night in Amarillo, TX.

But about 10 miles south of Flagstaff, our journey came to a halt with a big BOOM! But with not as much resulting excitement as our blowout on the rig a few weeks ago. So, yes, my second Goodyear tire, the driver’s rear, blew out.

Truck Blowout

The day before we left, I’d had replaced my passenger front tire because the Goodyear on that wheel had popped open along a sidewall seam and had also developed a wobble. The tire guy at Big O checked my other tires and said they looked good.

I had just started to jack up the truck when an Arizona Highway Patrol officer pulled in behind me. He was kind of worried because we were parked just past an entrance ramp onto the Interstate, but he put out some cones to help guide the traffic entering the Interstate around us.

After getting the truck jacked up, I lowered the spare tire from underneath the truck bed, and quickly discovered that Goodyear had struck again.

Last February, my son Chris had swapped out my right front tire with my spare because it felt a little funny, like it was out of balance, or something. I figured it would still be a good spare for a few miles if I needed one.

But when I looked at the spare I found that it had blown out while it was underneath the truck. It looked like it had exploded from the inside, blowing several large chunks of rubber out of the sidewall. You might think that this might have been caused by road debris, maybe even from something thrown out from our rig blowout, but no. The damage was on the topside of the tire where it was shielded up against the bottom of the bed. The tire had just blown out all on its own.

I called my Good Sam ERS and told them I needed either a new tire, or a tow. But when I was told 45 minutes to an hour, the Highway Patrol officer said he would have to call the Patrol’s tow service because they could be there in 20 minutes, and he wanted us off the road as quick as possible. And of course I would have to pay for that tow. But Good Sam said I might be able to get reimbursed.

So, 55 minutes later, the OFFICIAL tow service shows up.

Truck Tow 1

Truck Tow 2

And an hour later, and $143 poorer, we were sitting in the waiting area of a Big O Tire Store on the east side of Flagstaff having two new tires ($273) put on our truck. Finally two and a half hours after the BOOM we were back on the road.

We had planned to have lunch in Gallup, NM, but ended up at a Carl’s Jr. in Holbrook instead. I tried their new All-American Burger that has a little of everything, including a hamburger, a hot dog, and even kettle-fried potato chips.

Carl's All-American Burger

It was good, but confusing, with the taste of both a hamburger and a hot dog.

Mister of course was with us, but couldn’t settle down, going back and forth from the front seat to the back. This is the first time he’s traveled more than a few miles in anything other than the rig, and he couldn’t figure out what was going on. He just knew something wasn’t right.

What Jan and I missed most was our bathroom in the rig, especially with signs like these at the rest areas.

Rattlesnake Rest Area

It was a real pain keeping track of upcoming rest areas, figuring how far to the next one, and then finding it closed. It’s much more convenient to just pull over when you have a wide shoulder and take care of things.

For dinner, we ended up at another Carl’s Jr., this one in Santa Rosa, NM. But this time I just ordered a Double Bacon Cheeseburger which was really good.

We finally pulled into the Quality Inn in Amarillo about 10:45pm, very tired after a long day. Besides our tire delay, we lost two hours changing from  Arizona’s non-Daylight Savings Time (the equivalent to Pacific Time) to Texas’ Central Daylight Time.

I’ll catch up more tomorrow.

May 22, 2016

Happy 48th, Chris!

I was up about 6:30, with Jan following about 7 to get ready to roll this morning. We didn’t have breakfast or coffee because we planned on grabbing something at the Flying J.

We hoped to pull out by 8:30, but beat that by 15 minutes, and were out on I-45 by a little after 8:30. And about 30 minutes later we were pulling into the RV lanes at the Flying J on I-45. And although it was faster than last time, it still wasn’t exactly speedy.

Last time, the first pump I used was flowing about a gallon every 30 seconds, so it would take about an hour for 120 gallons. This time it was twice as fast, at 4 gallons a minute, but still, that’s slow. I’ve often seen pumps flowing a gallon every 4 or 5 seconds. Here’s what happened that time.


Normally this is a clogged filter on the pump, so I told them about it while I was inside getting our coffee, as well as a couple of very tasty Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Biscuits.

We were back on the road a little before 10 for our trip down to Brandi’s in Katy. After taking the Beltway around, rather go out I-10 and take the winding FM 1463 to Brandi’s, we went straight across I-10 and down to the Westpark Tollway and took that out to the Shell station at the corner of 1093 and 1463 where we were going to park for the afternoon.

We got there a little before 11, and as I was leaving the rig, Brandi and Landon pulled up next to us. I told her that was perfect timing, since I had planned to call and have them pick us up.

She said she was on her way back from the grocery store and just happened to see us pull in. But even more coincidental, as I was walking over to the convenience store to ask permission to park for a few hours, we saw Chris, Linda, and Piper there picking up something for our dinner.

Getting to Brandi’s we had a great meal and an even better family get-together.

Chris got a Cheeseburger Ice Cream Birthday Cake with Star Wars characters on it.

Chris' Birthday Party 2

And of course, here’s the obligatory family portrait.

Chris' Birthday Party 3

Is that a great-looking family, or what?

We were back on the road by a little before 3pm, heading for the Colorado River Thousand Trails about an hour away. Coming down from Brandi’s we’d just been running the fans, since as forecast, the weather was very overcast and about 75 degrees. And it was supposed to be the same this afternoon.

But as we got back to the rig, the sun was coming out and temps were rising. So we turned off the fans, closed the windows, and cranked up the generator to run the A/C’s.

The generator was being a little cantankerous, however, at least at the start. The first time it ran for about 5 minutes and quit. The second time it ran about 10 minutes and shut down. But the third time it ran all the rest of the way. I’ll have to check the generator error codes to see if it shows anything.

We were checked in and set up at Colorado River by a little after 4pm, after a busy, fun day.

May 22, 2017

HuHot and Old Cars . . .

Beautiful weather here in Billings today, with temps in the high 60’s and a lot of sun. But since it’s supposed to be in the low 40’s tonight, I plugged my engine’s block heater once again for a toasty engine tomorrow morning.

We’ve stayed here a number of times over the years and you can’t ask for a nicer park.

Billings RV Park

There’s even parking for two vehicles if you need it.

For breakfast this morning we had our Wheat Montana treats from yesterday’s visit.

Wheat Montana Goodies

She got a Chocolate Croissant while I got an Almond Bear claw. Both really good. Too bad we didn’t buy more.

Jan spent an hour or so at one of the two nearby park laundries doing our heavy floor rugs, the only thing she doesn’t normally do in our rig’s Splendide Washer/Dryer combo.

About 4pm we headed out to have dinner at our other favorite Billings’ eatery, HuHot Mongolian Grill.

Like the Genghis Grill, HuHot gives you an empty bowl and you go down a cafeteria-type line filling your bowl up with all the meats, veggies, and sauces you want.

HuHot Ingredients

Then you give it to the grill guy who tosses it on a big circular grill and cooks it up for you while you watch.

And what starts out like this,

HuHot Before

ends up like this.

HuHot After

One thing kind of funny was the grill guy’s reaction when he tossed my bowl on the grill. I had loaded it up with all of the really hot and spicy sauces, so when the steamy vapors hit in the face, he jerked back saying, ”WOW”. When he looked over at me, I just smiled.

As we were leaving HuHot I saw this really nice 1937 V-8 Ford in the parking lot.

HuHot 1937 Ford 1

I really like those taillights, but I don’t think they’re original equipment. Note the gas cap in the nearest one.

HuHot 1937 Ford 2

Then it was off to the nearby Sam’s Club to pick up a prescription for me and a case of Joint Juice for Jan. We also scouted out the gas station to get some diesel tomorrow morning before we leave town.

Besides being close by and an easy in and out, at $2.37/gallon, it’s the cheapest in the area by about $.20 a gallon.

Later, coming home from Sam’s we passed another bunch of old cars.

Billings Old Cars 1

Billings Old Cars 2

Don’t know why they’re stored there, but they run the gambit of really old to fairly new.

One of our blog readers noticed the helper springs on our wiper arms in the photo of Karma sleeping on the dash yesterday..

Montana Karma on Dash 2

I found these at a truck stop a few years ago, but you can get the same ones here on Amazon.


They work great to keep the blades firmly against the glass, and even better, here on Amazon they’re half the price of the truck stop ones. Check ‘em out..

Looking at our route to Rapid City tomorrow, I noticed that if I take US 212 past the Custer Battlefield, it makes a 50 mile shorter route around to connect back up with I-90 right above Sturgis, turning our 363 mile trip into only 313 miles.

So off we go.

May 22, 2018

What A Burger . . .

I spent the morning and early afternoon mostly working on website stuff, both the Knife website and the Big Huntsville Storage website.

Around noon our power went off here at the park. It seems to happen every couple of weeks or so, and usually comes back on pretty quickly. And it was back on in just a couple of minutes . . . and then back off again. And then off again. And then back on.

This raised my suspicions so I got up to check the LED that monitors our shore power voltage and found it, not at the normal 122-124 volts, but showing 131 volts. And as I watched, every so often, it would bounce up to 132 and then back down to 130. But then it momentarily hit 133 and our Progressive EMS (Electrical Management System) disconnected us from shore power to protect the coach

I took my new 50 amp tester out to the pedestal to check things out.

50 Amp Tester at Pedesta2l

And I had 131-132 volts on both legs so it wasn’t an unbalanced voltage situation. I watched it for about 15 minutes without it ever going above 133 volts, so I switched the EMS into bypass mode so we’d get power back in the coach. I did keep monitoring the voltage in the coach, and about 15 minutes later it was back down to normal. So a little later I switched the EMS back into the circuit.

I don’t what the problem was, but it seems to have been a power company problem. I’ll keep an eye on it.

But I did get another plastic tub filled up which we took over to the storage room a little after 4pm. Then it was on up to Whataburger for dinner. #6’s for both of us. Plus I got an Apple & Cranberry Salad to bring home for dinner tomorrow night.

May 22, 2020

A Lot of Pent Up . . . Well, Something

Going into the Memorial Day Weekend, traffic coming home was pretty much back to the pre-Wu normal. And maybe a little more, since the traffic was heavy heading down toward Galveston for the weekend.

But the real indication that things were finally opening up, was that the Heartbreaker’s Gentlemen’s Club right along the Interstate was open again. And it was more crowded than I’ve ever seen it. Not only was the huge parking lot full, but people were parking out along the feeder.

Like I said, a lot of pent up . . . something.

One thing funny about this club is that every few years some do-gooder in League City decides to shut down this den of iniquity. But that only lasts until the first City Council meeting when they present their petition. And then they’re told that their taxes would more than double, since that club is the largest single tax-paying business in the city, by a wide margin. And then it all fades away until next time.

This past Tuesday we once again had lunch at Saltgrass Steakhouse, the second time since they reopened. And then yesterday we had supper at Los Ramirez Mexican Restaurant, our local favorite, and where we last ate back in March the day before everything shut down.

Every other table was taped off, and the waitstaff were all wearing masks, but the food was as delicious as always. And like a look of places, they used their dine-in downtime to repaint the place. Really nice.

May 22, 2021

End Of School . . .

Thought first I’d catch with our Thursday get-together up in Huntsville with Debi and Ed Hurlburt, and Janice and Dave Evans at the Farmhouse Café.

We were beginning to get a little worried with the route our Garmin GPS was taking us through the backstreets of Huntsville, but we finally found the place tucked in behind Sam Houston State University. And it turned out to be just as good as advertised.

Farmhouse Cafe

Jan got the Grilled Chicken Breast with Fried Green Tomatoes and Green Beans,

Farmhouse Cafe Jan

while I got the Chicken Juarez with Turnip Greens and Green Beans.

Farmhouse Cafe Greg

Ed Hurlburt also got the Grilled Chicken Breast like Jan, but with a Loaded Sweet Potato and Fruit.

Farmhouse Cafe Ed

Dave Evans, however went in a piscatorial direction, with the Fried Catfish, Fries, and Hushpuppies.

Farmhouse Cafe Dave

I never got a look at what Debi and Janice had since they were on the other side of the table, but I didn’t hear any complaints.

Already looking forward to our get-together in July, since we’ll be gone in June.

Finally broke down today and subscribed to AppleTV+ so Jan and I could watch For All Mankind, the alternate history of the U.S.- Russian Space Race. A lot of family/friends have been recommending it.

As I always do, I registered using one of the Privacy.com limited credit cards so that I can easily drop my subscription at any time without worrying about continuing charges.

For lunch today we went to Los Ramirez once again and it was delicious as always. Plus you know you’ve been to a place a lot when the lady getting our drinks tells us what we want, and also that we want no chips but two green sauces, and only one straw. And the waiter taking our order walks up and just repeats our order to us without any prompting.

Our daughter Brandi and several other mothers got together and had an End of School party for the kids, including a BIG water slide and a Taco Truck.

Brandi Water Slide Party

Brandi Water Slide Party 2

Looks like they had a lot of fun, and managed to dodge all the rain and lightning.

Though, I doubt if the kids would have minded the rain under the circumstances.

May 22, 2022

It’s Finally Set Up . . .

I think I finally got GoDaddy to make the changes I needed, and several readers have said that they’re seeing the blog now when they weren’t below.

So if you’re seeing it now, please let me know.

Lunch today was King Food once again, always delicious.

We both got the Chicken in Hot Garlic Sauce with Jalapenos, along with Fried Rice and an Egg Roll.

And of course, starting with their Hot & Sour Soup.

And as I noted the last time we were here, they have a perfect way to keep from having to reprint their large menu to keep up with the rising prices.

After lunch, we headed over to the office so I could finish setting up the UPS Remote Station connected to the new Shipping computer without having to work around people during the day. And with no interruptions, it only took about 30 minutes to finish up.

And that completes everything that needs to be done in setting up the new Shipping computer.

May 22, 2023

Another Day, Another Leg . . .

This is our first stay at a Key West Inn, and we really like it. The room is nice, the towels are thick, and the shower is scalding hot.

Even the breakfast bar is very well stocked.

Key West Inn Breakfast Bar

Six different flavors of creamers, three flavors of coffee syrups, two different flavors of waffles, hot chocolate, grits, and oatmeal. Really good.

About 10:30 we drove over to Claudia’s to pick her up for our day of fun and frolic over in Foley/Gulf Shores/Pensacola, with our first stop at a long-time favorite, Tallulah’s, nee Tootie’s Yellow Broom, a combination gift shop/dress shop. We’ve been coming here for years, and in fact, Jan was wearing a top that she bought there last year and they recognized it.

Then we took the road out to the area on the beach where my parents used to have their rental cottages.

Orange Beach Cottage

This is the only remaining one of the two.

Originally both of them were located down at the end of this row where the blue house is now.

Orange Beach Cottage Beachside 1

Still looks good.

Next up we took the bridge over Alabama Point to Florida, ending up at everyone’s favorite Sonny’s BBQ, the 4th leg of our Southern BBQ Tour.

Jan and Claudia both got versions of the Pulled Pork Sandwich.

Sonny's BBQ Pensacola Pulled Pork Sandwich Jan

Sonny's BBQ Pensacola Pulled Pork Sandwich Claudia

I got the Two Meat Combo Plate, with Pulled Pork, and Baby-Back Ribs, and Beans and Beans.

Sonny's BBQ Pensacola Two Meat Combo

Turns out that Sonny’s is one of Claudia’s favorite places too.

Then it was into Pensacola to visit Artesana, another of Jan’s long-time favorites. We’ve been coming here for 25 years, but it was Claudia’s first time.

Artesana Pensacola

Finally, with everyone full and giftshopped out, we made the 90 minute drive back to Fairhope to finish up a very nice day.

Tomorrow Claudia is grandson-sitting, so Jan and I will be heading back over to Gulf Shores to have lunch at Lulu’s and more gift-shopping.






Let’s Buckle Up Out There . . .

We were back over at Claudia’s this morning, where I finished up one door knob problem, and only need two new large wood screws to mount the striker plate to finish the other one, that I will pick up tomorrow at the local Fairhope ACE Hardware store.

Later, a little after noon, we all headed back over to Foley to have lunch at another of our go-to places, Lambert’s Cafe. Also known as Lambert’s Throwed Rolls.

And they do throw them, sometimes 30 or 40 feet, the length of the dining room. And they’re big, about the size of a softball, soft and hot out of the oven. So hot that sometimes you have to immediately drop it,

Jan got what she came her for, the Fried Chicken, along with Mashed Potatoes and Carrots, as did Claudia.

I got my usual, the BBQ Pork Steak, with White Beans, Apple Sauce, and Mashed Potatoes.

Keep Those Seatbelts Fastened

Every time Jan and I have flown, including before we were married, I’ve always cautioned to keep her seatbelt fastened unless she’s actually getting up to use the restroom. And then refasten it when she sits back down.

And this is why.

One dead, 30 injured as Singapore Airlines flight encounters severe turbulence

Yet every time we fly I see people rush to unbuckle their seatbelt as soon as the sign goes off. And they wonder why they got slammed into the ceiling when the turbulence hit.

Or maybe they don’t wonder anymore at all.

Buckle Up Out There.

Thought For The Day:

This should settle it once and for all.

Your Retro-Preview Highlights –

2010 – Crabs, Pelicans, and Deer

2017 – With a Side of Jell-O

2019 – A Lazy, Expensive Day in London

2020 – So Long and Thanks For All The Fish

And Now On To Today’s Retro-Blogs.™

May 21, 2009

Last Day in Paradise – Redux…

Well, it turns out that today was not our last day in Key West.

I wasn’t feeling well this morning so we decided to put off leaving for another day. Just stayed around the coach all day and then walked over to the RV park restaurant for supper.  This place is an outside bar/restaurant with the tables right on the water.

The food was great and the view was fantastic!

Geiger Key Grill

Jan had the Turkey & Dressing and I had the Cuban Roast Pork dinner.  Both excellent!

While we were sitting at our table a guy brought by a small batfish he had caught.

This is one ugly fish.


Since we have a long trip tomorrow to West Palm Beach, we’ll try to get an early stop, probably around 8pm.

May 21, 2010

Crabs, Pelicans, and Deer…Oh My!

Before heading out to lunch we stopped by the dumpsters to drop off our garbage. About 50 yards away we saw 3 of the 4 deer that hang out around the park.

AmSunSet Deer

Then we drove over to The One-Eyed Crab for lunch. This place is so good it’s the 3rd time we’ve eaten there in 3 days. My shrimp salad sandwich on ciabatta bread was fantastic. And of course the obligatory clam chowder.

After lunch, we perused a couple of gift shops and then went back down to Pier 21 to check out the pelicans again.

And I’ve never seen pelicans in a close swarm like this.


Getting back home, Jan sat out with Mister. While he explored the area, I worked on my on-going tire problem.


I installed the 2nd valve stem extension, put on the remote pressure sensor, and monitored the pressure for a while. Unlike the other day, this time I didn’t show any loss. After checking for a couple of hours I decided it was safe to top off the tire pressure, so I fired up the coach engine so I could air up the tire using the on-board air compressor.

Then about 5:30 we drove to Half Moon Bay restaurant for our last dinner with our friends Al and Adrienne. We leave tomorrow morning so this will be our last get-together for a while.

Tomorrow we head for Cle Elum, WA, about 195 miles away. Cle Elum is right down the road from Roslyn, WA, where Northern Exposure was filmed. We stayed here two years ago on our way to Alaska, and it’s a really nice area.

May 21, 2013

Another Day, Another Repair Job . . .

The wind really picked up today as the cold front moved in. Doesn’t look like we’ll get any rain out of it, but the high for the next two days will be in the low 50’s with the low in the mid 20’s.

Yes, mid 20’s!

But it will still be sunny so it will be nice. In fact for the rest of the time we’ll be here, it’s supposed to be sunny and in the 60’s.

Around 2pm I headed out for a couple of errands. I wanted to get the truck washed, and I wanted to check out any local hardware stores for a new countertop drinking faucet.

Drinking Faucet

This one had started leaking around the base and I want to get it fixed. It has always dripped just a bit when our shore water pressure was high enough, but that wasn’t a problem because the cat’s water bowl sits under it. But now water is pooling on the countertop so I need to get it fixed.

There’s no Lowe’s or Home Depot around here but I thought I’d check out the several hardware stores I’ve seen in the area. With enough searching, I could probably find new washers for the inside, but it’s just simpler to install a replacement.

I wasn’t able to find anything locally, but I’ll check when we’re in Reno tomorrow. Otherwise, it looks like I’ll be able to get one from Amazon in a couple of days.

Getting the truck washed just further convinced me that I don’t like the ‘touchless’ car washes, the ones that use water pressure only. They just don’t get all the dirt and grime of the truck like the ones that use the rotating felt brushes.

Here’s what happens when you buy a bag of chips in Apache Junction at 1500 ft. and then bring it up to an elevation of 6500 ft. It swells up like a balloon, and then ‘poofs’ when you open it.

Swollen Chip Bag

I’ve noticed a number of our packages doing this.

For dinner tonight we finished off the last of the spicy chicken vegetable soup. Still good.

Tomorrow we’re going to do our Donner Pass, Reno, Virginia City, Wal-Mart, Sam’s Club, Famous Dave’s BBQ day trip.

Sounds like fun.

Happy, happy, happy.

May 21, 2014

A Wild and Wooly Night . . .

Well, they said we were in for some thunderstorms last night, but that was an understatement.

During the night we had high winds, very heavy rain, lightning, and hail, sometimes all at the same time. And that all prefaced another cold front coming through.

Today’s high was 83°, but the low tonight is supposed to be 49. Tomorrow is 68 and 44, with Friday at 67 and 45.

But with no rain forecast, it really should be pretty nice. At least no AC needed for a few days.

Later in the morning, Jan and I changed the sheets on our bed. We really like these Sateen sheets we bought earlier this year. In fact we liked them so much we bought a 2nd set.

Milani Sheet Set

Striped QUEEN Sateen Sheet Set

They’re a high thread count and very soft. They’ve also held up very well as far as wear and tear goes. They still look brand new.

I spent most of the afternoon working on some computer stuff, before getting in some nap practice.

I think I’ve about got the art of napping down pat, but probably need a few more months of practice to hone my skills.

About 4pm Jan and I drove over to pick up Dave and Lynn Cross for dinner. They had never been to Mancino’s Pizza, our favorite local place.

Dave and Lynn Cross

Not only are their pizzas really good, but also their Sammy Bread, which is a homemade cheesy garlic bread, is great.

We always get the XL Meat Grande pizza which has pepperoni, sausage, ham, bacon, ground beef & a special blend of cheese. Like we do at Grimaldi’s, the XL gives us plenty to take home for later.

We’ve known Dave and Lynn for 5 or 6 years but this is the first time we’ve really had a chance to sit down and talk. Turns out Dave and I have a lot of common interests, including flying, and both having worked in the aerospace field.

Coming back to the park, we spent an hour or so at their 5th wheel with Lynn serving us pie for dessert. Really good.

We got back to the rig about 7:30 where I started looking at problems with a laptop. It’s pretty new, but I’m wondering if it’s not a memory problem. I think I may have some spares around here to substitute. We’ll see.

May 21, 2015

Nope. Not Today, Either . . .

After 1534 miles in two days, we made it to Vandalia, IL about 10pm tonight.

Too pooped to do much, but go to bed early.

But I promise a full blog tomorrow detailing the trials and tribulations of our trip.

May 21, 2016


or Lost in Translation.

Well, that didn’t go as planned.

Jan was up about 8 this morning, to get ready for our trip down to Katy to our daughter Brandi’s for a family get-together for our son Chris’ birthday. I was going to get up about 8:30, and we were going to leave about 9:30, picking up Rudy’s BBQ for everyone along the way. Jan was also bringing a big pan of her Sopapilla Cheesecake that everyone was looking forward to.

But getting up, Jan found several phone calls waiting for her, from both Chris and Brandi. Somehow we all got our wires crossed, and although Jan and I were sure we heard Saturday, apparently everyone else knew it was Sunday.

Now I think we would have noticed if it was going to be Sunday, tomorrow, because that’s the day we move back to the Colorado River Thousand Trails in Columbus. So, a quick change of plans.

First things first, I went back to bed.


So now, we’ll change our schedule for tomorrow’s trip. We’ll skip our usual Cracker Barrel breakfast and pull out of the site about 8:30. After hooking up, this should put us out on I-45 south about 8:45. Then it’s a stop for diesel at the Flying J along the way, right before we get on the Tollway.

Now, sometimes we’ve been in and out there in 15 minutes, and once it was over 45 minutes, so I’m allowing extra time for that. But we’ll make up most or all of that because we won’t have to make the Rudy’s BBQ stop.

And that was because this afternoon we decided to drive down to the Rudy’s in the Woodlands area and pick up our BBQ today. And even better, it gave us a good excuse to have dinner at the Torchy’s Tacos in the same area. A Two’fer!

I guess you could call Torchy’s a ‘gourmet’ taco place. I mean, with ahi tuna tacos, grilled salmon tacos, or ones with Jamaican Jerked Chicken, Fried Avocados, or Jalapeno Sausage, it’s hard to call them anything else.

We started out with the Green Chile Queso & Chips.

Torchy's Tacos Chips

This time Jan tried the Baja Shrimp, as well as her usual Brushfire, which is the Jerked Chicken.

Torchy's Tacos Baja Shrimp

Me, I stayed in my usual tasty rut, with the Jalapeno Sausage and the Green Chile Shredded Pork.

Torchy's Tacos Republican

Jan liked her Baja Shrimp, but will probably go back to her Trailer Park taco, which has Fried Chicken and Green Chiles, with cheese and Pico de Gallo.

After a delicious meal, we drove on down the Interstate to Rudy’s for our BBQ. They were pretty busy, so it took me about 15 minutes to pick up 1-1/2 pounds of moist brisket and 1-1/2 pounds of lean (or dry and chewy as I call it). This is Jan’s favorite.

I also got a couple of quarts of the Creamed Corn. Jan doesn’t really like corn, but she loves the way Rudy’s does it. A loaf of bread and a lot of Rudy’s Sauce, and we were on our way back north.

Our final stop was at the Conroe Sam’s Club for a case of Joint Juice for Jan’s knees and joints. We had checked at Wal-mart and several other places, and everyone was out of it. But we’ve never not found it at Sam’s. Until today.

But before I could look for the Joint Juice, I needed to renew my Sam’s card. Now normally I would do this at the register, but this time I wanted to downgrade my Plus card to a regular card, saving $30 over the Plus card’s $99.

We had originally upgraded to the Plus a few years ago because it offered additional prescription discounts. But then Sam’s stopped honoring Wal-Mart’s $4 – $10 prescription list, so it ceased making a difference.

The line at the Customer Service was long enough that a manager came over help out. And luckily for me, he was a little rusty on the computer. He was able to give me my new, downgraded card, but he couldn’t get the system to charge me the $69 for it.

So finally, in frustration, he handed my new card and said, “Here! It’s free this year.”


But I didn’t get to used my shiny new card for Joint Juice, because they didn’t have any either. And the pharmacist said she hadn’t seen it in a while. So now we’ll have to look elsewhere.

Jan has been taking Joint Juice for years, even before we started RV’ing. And she knows from experience that if she goes off it, within 3 or 4 weeks, she’ll start having a lot of knee pain. So when we got home I went online to see what I could find.

Amazon had it for $34 for a case of 30, with free Prime Two Day Shipping, but that’s about $10 more than Sam’s price. So I did a generic Google search and found Jet.com

I’m sure you’ve seen the TV commercials with people’s exploding heads and purple smoke. That’s Jet.com. And they have great prices, and great service.

The case of Joint Juice that Sam’s sells for $25, and Amazon sells for $34, Jet.com sells it for $18.26. And that’s with Free Two Day Shipping. In addition, I got another $0.26 cents off because I waived Free Return, and then another 1.5% off because I used a debit card, rather than a credit card. Nice and Nicer!

I’ll probably be ordering more stuff from Jet.com at these prices.

May 21, 2017

With a side of Jell-O . . .

As it seems to happen all the time, the forecasted low of 39° for Garrison, MT last night turned out to actually be 32°.

And expecting this, I did plug in my engine’s block heater last night so that this morning my engine oil temperature was a toasty 137°. Nice.

We were out on I-90E heading to Billings, MT 240 miles away a little before 10am. And thanks to blog reader Mary Burge, our first stop was at the Wheat Montana in Three Forks, MT,

Wheat Montana 1

Wheat Montana is a family farm/deli that specializes in non-GMO wheat products grown on their own farm. Wheat which they then turn into delicious wheaty treats like ginormous cinnamon rolls

Wheat Montana Cinnamon Rolls

and other delectables.

Wheat Montana Products

Besides the goodies, we split a really good Tuna Melt with Cheddar Cheese before we got back on the road.

Thanks, Mary.

Two things come up a lot while you’re traveling through Montana:

First off you start to hate these signs.

Chain Up Area

It means you’re now in for a long, slow climb at 40mph and 3mpg. Sometimes it seems like you’re going straight up. But at least I finally got to pass someone, the slower trucks, as we crawled uphill. And just like yesterday, we were back up in the snow line with piles of it still along the road.

But it also means great scenic views along the way.

Montana Scenery 1

Montana Scenery 2

Montana Scenery 3

Montana Scenery Blue Flower

One thing that was different about this trip was Karma. When we first started traveling with her last year, she would run and hide as soon as I started up the rig, and not show up again until about 15 minutes after we were parked.

But in the last six months or so she’s started coming out more, sleeping on the sofa, or on the floor between our chairs.

But today, just like Mister used to,

Mister 3

she climbed up on the dash and went to sleep.

Montana Karma on Dash

By 4:30 we were parked and set up at the Billing’s Trailer Village RV Park, a park we’ve stayed at many times before.

And this morning we decided to shake the Jell-O again and change our schedule a little. Originally we were going to stay one night here in Billings, and then in Gillette, WY for one night, before going on to the Rapid City, SD area for a week or so.

But where to stay in Gillette was always kind of sketchy. So now we’re staying here for two nights, and then we’ll make the 365 mile trip straight through to Rapid City on Tuesday.

About 5:30 we headed out to have dinner at Famous Dave’s BBQ once again. Our last visit was about two months ago when we were staying in Apache Junction, AZ, so it was about time for another meal there.

Jan got her regular 1/2 rack of St. Louis Ribs, with fries and beans,

Famous Dave's Billings Jan

and I got my usual Rib’s N Meats Combo, with St. Louis Ribs, Beef Brisket, and a Hot Link Sausage, along with corn on the cob and beans. All delicious as usual.

Famous Dave's Billings Greg

Yeah, it’s a rut, but it’s a tasty rut. And as usual also, plenty of leftovers.

We’ll sleep late tomorrow, goof off, and then do some shopping. Then it’s dinner at our other favorite place here, the HuHot Mongolian Grill.

May 21, 2019

A Lay-About, Do Nothing Day . . . 5/21/19

That turned out to be a little expensive.

When we extended our London stay an extra 3 days and added some extra excursions, we left today open for anything interesting that we came across that we might want to do.

However, what we ended up wanting to do was pretty much nothing. At least in the morning so we could sleep late. We did go down for breakfast about 9am since it wraps up at 10. Didn’t want to miss out on our free meal.

While we were there I went online and bought us two 24 hour tickets on one of the several Hop On – Hop Off double-decker open top buses. Looking at the brochure, it showed 4 lines, Red, Green, Blue, and Orange, that covered the major tourist attraction parts of the city. So we thought we just spend a relaxing afternoon riding around the city, checking out some of the places we hadn’t already visited, and maybe getting a better look at some we already had.

We also wanted to check out Oxford St, a high-end shopping area, and also home to Hamley’s, a toy store that opened in 1760, making it 259 years old! Kind of makes F.A.O. Schwarz, which opened in 1862, look like the new kid on the block.

F.A.O. Schwarz even went out of business for 3 years, from 2015 to 2018, when their owner, Toy’s R Us, went under and dragged Schwarz down with them.

But the whole hop-on hop-off thing wasn’t what it was cracked up to be. At least with the company we chose.

They have a neat app that I downloaded onto my phone that lets you track the buses so you know when the next one is coming along to your stop. BUT they don’t tell you that that bus will be full, and so will the next two, and the empty one that finally shows up won’t even appear on the app at all.

And when we got to the stop where we’re supposed to change over to another route, we found that the pickup point for the new route was about 100 yards away from the drop-off point.

And then when we got ready to come back to our hotel from the Oxford St. area, the buses in use must have been those new ‘stealth buses’, the ones you can’t see, because the app would show a bus stopping in front of us, but we couldn’t see any bus stopped or coming by. Turned out to be a big waste of £70.

So we Ubered home. But more about Uber later.

Jan and I have both been suffering from colds since we were in Paris, and have been taking DayQuil as a decongestant. So while we were out hopping yesterday she told me how tired and sleepy she was, even though she’d taken DayQuil and not the NyQuil that makes you drowsy.

Later getting back to the hotel, she discovered the problem. She had accidentally taken a couple of non-prescription over-the-counter sleeping tablets instead of the DayQuil.

I guess they really work.

May 21, 2020

So Long and Thanks For All The Fish . . .

Some of you will get this, but most of you probably won’t.

A couple of days ago, I blog-posted about my porpoise training days down in Florida during the summer of 1967.

And I talked about how Lori, the smaller one on the left,

Thor and Lori

once caught a fish in her pen and gave it to me as a gift, I guess because I had given her so many fish.

Well, apparently it wasn’t just Lori. It seems that dolphins at the Barnacles Café and Dolphin Feeding, an attraction in Australia, are missing all the tourists, who aren’t coming to see them and feed them, so they’re bringing them gifts to try and lure them back.

Gift-Giving Dolphins

Dolphins who frequent Australia’s Tin Can Bay, a popular tourist spot, have taken to bringing “gifts” ashore, apparently missing the visitors who would normally be lined up to feed them before the coronavirus pandemic.

The pod of humpback dolphins has brought sponges, barnacle-covered bottles, and fragments of coral to Queensland’s Barnacles Café & Dolphin Feeding in recent weeks, a volunteer told Australia’s 7News.

“Nothing surprises me with dolphins and their behavior anymore,” Barry McGovern, a dolphin expert and PhD student at the University of Queensland, told the outlet. “They do everything – they use tools, they have culture, they have something similar to names in signature whistles.”

Now, before anyone corrects me, yes I know Lori and Thor were dolphins, NOW. But back then, they were porpoises.

This was a dolphin, and actually still is.

Dolphin Fish

It’s a fish.

A Dolphin Fish, to be precise.

But somewhere along the line, it became a Mahi-Mahi.

I wish they’d just make up their minds and stop changing the names of things.

May 21, 2021

Not Much . . .

Not much of a blog tonight, since I’m knee-deep in the new client’s website.

But Jan and I have been going over our schedule for the next several months.

First up, of course, is our upcoming Illinois/Alabama trip starting on June 7th and then returning home on June 20th.

Then here’s what we have until the end of November.

Yakoff Smirnoff       July 17 – 5pm **    1894 Opera House in Galveston
Pompeii                    Until Sept 6            Museum of Natural Science in Houston
Body Worlds            Until Sept 6            Museum of Natural Science in Houston
Van Gogh 1              Starts Aug 12         Immersive – Same one we saw in Paris
Nutcracker Market   Nov 11-14              Ticket Sales TBD.   Keep Checking Back.
Van Gogh 2              Nov 21  – 2pm **     You can never have too much Van Gogh

And the Texas Renaissance Festival may figure in here somewhere.

We’ll see.

Looks like we’re in for still more rain this weekend, and even into next week. So probably not much BBQ’ing on the patio.

May 21, 2022


Lunch today was at Gator’s once again, with Jan getting her favorite Strawberry Walnut Salad with Grilled Chicken,

with a side of Ranch Dressing.

Recently I’ve been getting the Loaded Baked Potato Soup, but decided to go back to the Blackened Chicken Breast Sandwich with Sweet Potato Fries.

And of course, we had to finish up by splitting one of their delicious Keto Blueberry Muffins.

Then it was on up I-45 to the Costcutter’s near the HEB so Jan could get her hair cut. While she was doing that I filled up the Jeep at their gas station.

And set a new personal record. 15.72 gallons at 4.199 for a total of $66.

Another 10 cents and the price of gas will have tripled since November 1st, 2020. On that day I paid $1.42/gallon to fill up the Jeep.

Round and round it goes, and where it stops nobody knows.

May 21, 2023

They Were Calling Her Name . . .

Back To Yesterday:

Despite the nice free breakfast at our Day’s Inn hotel in Prattville, AL, Jan said the Blueberry Pancakes at the local Cracker Barrel were calling her name. So we were off over to the next exit for breakfast there.

Being a Saturday morning, we did have a 20-minute wait, but it was worth it.

Cracker Barrel Blueberry Pancakes 20230520

I went with the Old Timer’s Breakfast.

Cracker Barrel Old Timers 20230520

On the way home, we made a WalMart stop and then drove around for a while before spending the rest of the afternoon lazing around the hotel room.

Then around 5:30 we drove down into Montgomery to visit with more long-time friends, Fred and Susan.

Fred and I worked together for Storer Cable from around 1976 until late 78 when Jan and I moved to Houston to work for NASA. And we still get together whenever we’re in the area.

Fred and Susan 2023 Visit

Though we sometimes eat out, we’re always happy to find that Susan has fixed one of her delicious Lasagna dinners.

We always have a great time, just like before we moved to Texas. But finally about 10pm Jan and I had to head back to the hotel since we have an early start tomorrow for the drive down to Fairhope for the next 5 days.

Now On To Today:

After checking in to the Key West Inn here (our first time at one), we napped for a while before heading over to another long-time friend, Claudia’s home here in Fairhope.

And by ‘long-time’ I mean we’ve known each other since the 2nd or 3rd grade. Our mothers were best friends, and our fathers were in business together. And when we connected back up in person a couple of years ago, it seemed we started right up where we left off.

But this year we had an addition to the group, another classmate Billy Bergman. And though, as I told him that I only vaguely remember him (after all, it’s been 65 years and I’ve slept since then) he certainly seemed to remember me and some of my many antics at school. And there were a lot, believe me. And some of those he recounted I had forgotten about.

Well, Jan does say I’m memorable. For my part, I think I spent more of my school time standing out the hall than in the classroom.

After some nice hors d’oeuvres at Claudia’s home, we all headed over to the nearby Shanghai Cottage, a place we’ve eaten at the last couple of years, and definitely wanted to go back to.

We started off with a cup of their really good Hot & Sour Soup, and by ‘really good’, I mean King Food good. And these are really large ‘cups’. I wonder how big the bowl is.

Shanghai Cottage Hot and Sour

Then Jan and I shared an entrée of the Florida Orange Crispy Beef

Shanghai Cottage Florida Orange Crispy Beef

and an order of their Special Fried Rice, with a little bit of everything in it.

Shanghai Cottage Special Fried Ricef

And we never leave here without getting dessert, their Green Tea Ice Cream with Chocolate Sauce and Whipped Cream.

Shanghai Cottage Green Tea Ice Cream

Here’s Claudia and Jan from last year,

Jan and Claudia

but here’s kind of how I remember her too.

Claudia Little Girl Picture

Tomorrow it’s over to Gulf Shores and maybe Pensacola. We’ll see.

But we guarantee fun will be had.