Daily Archives: October 15, 2020

And The Winner Is . . .

Still Landon!

A week ago I posted Landon’s entry into his school’s yearbook cover contest.

Landon Yearbook Cover

And as I mentioned then, Landon’s entry came in second, so his picture will be on the back cover.

But not until today did we get a look at the winning entry.

Creech Yearbook Winner

Landon took one look at it and said,

“What’s with all the primary colors? And bubble letters? That’s a kid move!”

Now they were told to use a lot of color, but when Brandi pointed out to him that he might need more color, Landon said,

“It’s outer space, Mom. It wouldn’t be realistic if I added a lot of color.”

No compromising his artistic integrity for him.

So Landon draws a very realistic dachshund in a spacesuit and other kid draws a lot of circles. No biased grandpa here

Oh, and the winning artist?

He’s the son of the PTA President.

But you didn’t hear it here.

  

I was back under the rig this afternoon again working on the rig’s oil filter mount. I used the new Helicoil set I got at O’Reilly’s to quickly install the last Helicoil with no problems and no trouble getting the install tool out like I did the other day.

Then I ran bolts in and out of the holes as a test and they worked fine.

But then I notice a problem. The last coil I installed the other day didn’t get screwed in all the way, so one turn of the coil was sticking up above the surface of the mount surface, not a good thing for a tight seal.

I tried to screw it in further with no luck. But I was able to grab the coil edge with a pair of needle-nose pliers, and unwind it out of the hole. Then I tried to install in another coil using the new tool and it would only go so far. So I pulled that one back out too.

So, either for some reason I didn’t tap it all the way, or the threads are messed up at the point the coil stops. So that wrapped it up for today.

The reason I quit was I wanted to check with the family mechanic, our son Chris, to see if he thought I could just run the tap back in again. Said it shouldn’t be a problem.

So that’s on for this weekend.

 

And interesting article about how the U.S handled the Hong Kong Flu Pandemic in 1968-1969.

Would COVID-19 Have Even Been a Thing Fifty Years Ago?

And I will add “Or sixty years ago.”

The ‘Fifty Years’ refers to the Hong Kong Flu Pandemic.

Other than domestic social unrest and a war against Communism in Southeast Asia, life during the Hong Kong flu pandemic of 1968-70 generally went on as normal.

Globally, it is estimated that, world-wide, as many as four million died of Hong Kong flu, with the highest rates of mortality among infants and the elderly.  Some countries were hit harder than others, but it was “widespread and deadly” in the United States, with over 100 thousand estimated to have died. And adjusted for the population increase, that’s over 175,000 deaths.

And, again, life went on as normal in 1968 and 1969, whereas our world has been turned upside down in 2020.

And sixty years ago, during the Asian Flu Pandemic in 1958-1959, adjusted for population, almost 220,000 people died in the U.S. Sound familiar?

And again, no masks, no lockdowns, and no social distancing.

And both of these flu strains are still around and are usually included in the 3 to 5 strains in the yearly flu shot. Which doesn’t really bode well for a ‘vaccine cure’.

And speaking about that a new W.H.O study just released said that the antiviral drug Remdesivir had no substantial impact on the survival of COVID-19 patients or the length of their hospital stays.

The study was billed as the world’s largest randomized control trial on COVID-19 therapeutics. It spanned 405 hospitals across 30 countries, and 11,266 adults. It has yet to be peer reviewed.

Rut Roh!

 


Thought for the Day:

Why is it that useful idiots remain idiots long after they’ve exhausted their usefulness?

 

 


October 15, 2009

If it’s Thursday, it must be turkey…

Well, it’s officially Winter here in Elkhart.

Jan woke up to snow coming down this morning. Big fluffy flakes, but it didn’t stick because the ground wasn’t cold enough.

About 11 am we headed out to Cracker Barrel for lunch.  Thursday is Cracker Barrel day because Thursday is when they have Turkey and Dressing.   And Jan loves their Turkey and Dressing.

Coming home we found even more GMC motorhomes here in the park.

GMC 1

GMC 2

I think there’s about 20 of them here now.

GMC Big and Little

This picture illustrates the difference between the two styles of GMC motorhomes.  Basically there is a big one and a little one.  The one on the left is 26 feet long.  Note it has a extra window.  According to the factory brochure, the 26 foot model had 11 different floor plans and the shorter, 23 foot model had 4 different floor plans.

Almost 13,000 GMC’s were produced between 1973 and 1978, with about 9000 still on the road.  Quite a feat for a 25 year old RV.

Coming back to the rig, I spent a couple of hours finishing up my taxes that had to be sent in today and then headed down to the Post Office to drop it in the mail.

Coming back to the rig, I stopped off at the office to check our mail.  Besides a package from Amazon, I was surprised to find that the new shocks that I’d ordered last Friday had already arrived.

So back at the rig I called the mechanic to let him know the shocks were here and he could schedule the install.

About 5 we headed out  to North Garden Buffet, a really good Chinese buffet that’s nearby.

After we got back to the rig we talked to our son, Chris, who’s in SC going to Crime Scene Cleanup School.  His company, Garner Environmental, is branching out into this area.  Normally they do toxic spill cleanup, oil spill cleanup, and tank cleaning standby rescue. So I guess this is just another type of cleanup.


Thought For The Day:

If you’re sitting in public and a stranger takes the seat next to you, just stare straight ahead and say, “Did you bring the money?”

 

 


October 15, 2011

Cinnamon Buns and Crimson Crustaceans . . .

The weather really pitched a hissy fit all night, with high winds and a lot of rain coming down. Finally about 5:30 this morning I went outside and took in the bedroom awnings so I could get back to sleep. The flapping was keeping me awake.

About 2pm I headed back over to the RV/MH Hall of Fame. I told Jan this is now officially a ‘tarbaby’ project. A ‘tarbaby’ project is one where the further I get into it, the more stuck I become. I keep finding things they forgot to tell me about, things I would have done different if I had known ahead of time. Oh well. That’s why they pay me the big bucks . . . well, that’s why they pay me, anyway.

And now for another installment of . . .

Things Every RV’er should have:

But first, a blog reader wanted to know how to use a Volt-Ohm Meter to test a light bulb like I’d mentioned in yesterday’s blog.

First off, we talking about regular incandescent bulbs, not fluorescent, or LED. Sometimes the bulb is small and it’s hard to see the filament, or the glass is opaque and you can’t see it.

You test a light bulb exactly like you test for a blown fuse. Set your VOM to Ohms and touch the leads together. You should see a reading on the meter. Separate the leads and touch one lead to the bulb tip and one to the threads. If you get a reading the bulb is good. If the meter doesn’t change, the bulb is bad. And you test a fuse exactly the same way.

Here’s a link that will get you started using your VOM.

Measuring Stuff with a Multimeter

If you go to YouTube and type in ‘Using a Multimeter’ you will find a bunch of instructional videos on VOM use. Check it out.

Today’s gadget is the Kill A Watt.

Kill-A-Watt 1

Kill-A-Watt 2

There is a 3-prong AC plug on the back of the unit, and using a short extension cord, if necessary, plug the Kill A Watt into a wall plug. You can then plug any device into the socket on the front.

Then using the buttons on the front you can check the voltage coming into the KAW, the amps the device is pulling, and the watts used. You can also measure the kilowatt hours (KWH) the device is using just like the power company’s electric meter at your sticks & brick.

Another good use is to check the AC frequency of your power when using your generator. It should be 60 Hz, but how would you know?

You can get your own Kill A Watt from Amazon for less than $20.

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Thought for the Day:

“Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.” John Adams –October 11, 1798

 

 


October 15, 2012

Another Day, Another Blog . . .

Today was another stay-at-home, dreary, slightly rainy, very nice day. One of those days just perfect for sitting around the rig doing pretty much nothing.

Unfortunately, I had to do something: finish up my taxes and get them submitted before midnight. But it mostly consisted of double-checking all the figures so it didn’t take too long. And thanks to online filing, I didn’t have to make a run to the Post Office. Just click the ‘Submit’ button and a little while later an email tells me it was accepted.

Ain’t modern technology grand?

Our grandson Landon had tubes put in his ears this morning. Brandi called to say everything went fine with no problems. Hopefully this will take care of all the ear infections he’s been having. It certainly did wonders for our son Chris when he had it done years ago.

And of course I can’t mention Landon without posting the obligatory photo.

Landon School Picture 2012-2

We started off the morning with big steaming mugs of Dunkin Donuts Pumpkin Coffee, and then for lunch Jan heated up the leftover Baked Spaghetti from our visit to Angelo’s Pizza last Thursday. Italian always gets better reheated.

Then we spent the rest of the afternoon watching some of our DVR’ed TV shows so we would have room to DVR more TV shows.

It’s a vicious circle.

Then about 5:15 we headed out for dinner. back to Angelo’s Pizza down in Montross again.

Angelos Pizza

And just like last time, it was delicious. I wouldn’t be surprised if we managed to go back again before we leave here next Sunday.

Looks like tomorrow will be another nice goof-off day. Great!

We love goof-off days.

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Thought for the Day:

The last thing I want to do is kill you. But it’s still on the list.

 

 



October 15, 2013

Happy, Happy, Happy . . .

Well, after things slowed down here a bit, they’ve really picked back up. We had almost 80 vehicles today, a big jump from the 25 of a few days ago. Turns out the drill rig about a mile south of here, but on the same land, is finishing up and now they’re getting ready to frack. So they’re getting set up to pump the water from our frack pond up to another one closer by the new site.

Under the heading of a problem solved and a problem found . . .

Our cooling mist system does a great job of keeping us cool on the hotter days, but it does have a downside. It tends to get your glasses wet. Normally this isn’t a big problem, but combined with the caliche dust blowing around, it becomes a problem.

Caliche is basically limestone, and when it settles on your wet glasses and then dries, it turns hard as rock. And becomes very difficult to get off. So you end up with a hazy film on your lenses. A truck driver last year told us to soak them overnight in a solution of Dawn Dish Soap and water, and while this helps, sometimes a bad encrustation just won’t come off.

So after thinking on the problem for a while, I finally remembered some basic chemistry. Most acids will eat limestone. And vinegar is an acid, acetic acid, so I thought I’d give it a try.

And it worked. I dampened a rag with some vinegar and then carefully wiped the lenses several times, and that took care of the problem. And we probably won’t have any more problems with that this year, because with the cooler temps, we haven’t used the misting system in a week or so.

Jan fixed two of my favorite dishes this week. Well, one of them is a new favorite, anyway. First up was a big batch of her Crockpot King Ranch Chicken, big chunks of chicken, beans, Rotel Habanero Tomatoes, and pieces of corn tortillas.

HMMM Good. And really spicy, too.

My new favorite is a 7-UP Strawberry Cake, iced with CoolWhip. We both decided it would be even better with crushed pineapple in it, so next time a small can of that goes it too.

Finishing up, a Landon fix, what else. Landon loves Starbucks. He and his daddy Lowell have been going there since he was a baby.

Landon at Starbuck's

Of course, Landon gets hot chocolate, but he tells everyone he’s drinking coffee like his daddy.


Thought for the Day:

Nostalgia just ain’t what it used to be.

 

 


October 15, 2014

Bubba, Bubba, and Bob . . .

Well, I think we’re officially a Texas drill rig now. We have our very own flare stack, though it’s only been in operation a couple of times since they put it up a few days ago.

StillWagon Flare Stack

Hope it’s not going to act up like the one in front of us last year. That one was more like a volcano, with burning oil cascading down the sides and shooting smoke rings and fire balls into the air.

flare-3

flare-5

Nowt that’s Flare Stack. But it was very entertaining.

Normally when a vehicle comes up to the gate, I write their tag number down as they approach, and then I greet them with Good Morning or Good Afternoon, and ask for their first and last names. Then if there’s no company name on the vehicle, I ask “Who’re you with?”

But I may have to change this. The other day when I ask this to the driver, he turned to look at his passengers and said as he pointed, “This is Jose, and Hector and Juan.”

Then last week I when I ask the same question, I got, “Bubba, Bubba, and Bob.” I guess my look conveyed my confusion, because he then said, “They’re cousins.”

Yeah, like that explained it all.

Of course it could have been worse.

It could have been Larry, Darryl, and Darryl.

We got more Ama’s catering today, but I forgot to ask Jan what it was. So far we’ve had that delicious seafood and chicken pasta, then next we had beef and chicken fajitas, which we had tonight, very good, and then next up is Chicken Fried Steak.

YUM!

Brandi sent over this photo of Landon’s recent T-Ball game as he was presented the Game Ball for being very focused and doing a really good job as pitcher.

Landon's Game Ball

Based on what I’ve seen at other games with kids this age, I think the ‘very focused’ part means he didn’t wander off in the middle of the game to play in the dirt.

Way to Go, Landon!

Brandi also sent over this shot of Landon showing off his new winter jeans.

Landon in Jeans

Tomorrow is grocery day, so I’ll head over to B/CS in the morning to take care of that and also bring back lunch. I’m going to get a few extra things to last us for 10 days this time since we won’t be getting groceries again until our day off on Saturday, the 25th.

Jan’s getting giddy again.

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Thought for the Day:

“First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they attack you, then you win.” – Ghandi

 

 



October 15, 2015

No New Toys, Yet . . .

Well, all my stuff was delivered here in town, but as I figured, Billy, the landowner’s son, who is also a Deputy Constable, won’t bring them by until tomorrow sometime. So I’ve got one more day of ‘Antici . . . pation!’

Well, it did make it up to 98°, our hottest day here so far, but since the humidity was so low, it wasn’t too bad.  And tomorrow’s high is forecast for 86, with a 79 on Saturday. A lot nicer.

We still don’t have a firm handle on how much longer we’ll be here. Depending on who we talk to, it’s two more days, two more weeks, or two more months. I figure the ‘two week’ figure is probably closer than the first or last ones. But we’ll just have to see how it goes.

A couple of days ago I mentioned the LED strip lights that I used to replace the small fluorescent tubes in our rig, and a blog reader asked for more info. So I thought I do a refresher course.

The LED Strip Lights I used are actually automobile accent lights, so they’re heavy-duty and waterproof.

LED Strip Lights

Here’s my previous blog on how I changed them out. Just scroll down toward the bottom.

https://ourrvadventures.com/2014/12/batteries-and-balls/

Although the lights look yellow, they glow white, and are brighter than the standard fluorescent tube. And at $7 a pair, they cost less than the price of one new fluorescent tube, much less two. And they’re certainly cheaper than some of those commercial LED replacement tubes I’ve seen. Here’s what the final product looks like.

Hallway-LED-Upgrade-6a

The remaining two fixtures in the bedroom are next when those tubes go out. I’ve already got two sets of strips ready to go. And when the 4 foot tubes in our two kitchen/living room fixtures finally go out, I’ll probably replace them with 4 sets of the strips. 3 sets would about equal the lumen output of the old tubes, but 4 would probably be better.

I’m sitting here watching the ‘Failed Login Attempts’ counter ratchet up, with more than 20 attempts in the last 15 minutes. One thing funny though, are the login names they’re trying to use. Besides OurRVAdventures, Administrator, Admin, and even occasionally the real one, there are also some very strange ones that I have no idea where they came from.

Failed Login IPs

The blacked-out one is the real login name.

To see if it helps, I just went in and changed the number of ‘Allowable Retries’ from 2 to 1.

You really don’t want to set it to 0 because then if you make a mistake logging in, you’ve just locked yourself out for 4 hours. So I guess if the blog is very late one day, you’ll know what happened.

Just check back in 4 hours.

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Thought for the Day:

“Science is an ongoing race between our inventing ways to fool ourselves, and our inventing ways to avoid fooling ourselves.” – Saul Perlmutter


October 15, 2016

Coming Back ?

It looks like once again Summer is hanging on by its fingernails.

We’re supposed to have low 90’s for the next 5 days or so before a front finally comes through on Friday leaving a Sunny and 71 degree day, with a long string of low-80° days following.

We’re still in a holding pattern waiting to hear from SiteWatch on Monday. Or we hope to hear from them by then.

While I was looking at RV parks in the Kenedy / Karnes City area in case we do end up down there, I discovered that RV Park Reviews, my go-to website to check out RV parks, now has a Android app available. You can can find it here – RV Park Reviews app. There’s also an Apple version if you lean that way.

On another note, today is National I Love Lucy Day. I Love Lucy, which was the first scripted television program to be shot on 35 mm film, premiered 65 years ago today.

The show was also the first episodic one to be shot in front of a studio audience. In fact the studio had to knock down a concrete wall on one side of the studio to have a place for the audience to sit. And even the set had to be reconfigured to allow the audience to be able to view the action.

I Love Lucy Set

The individual sets were even redecorated to represent Fred and Ethel’s apartment as needed.

The fact that the show was done on film, the $500 a week cost paid out of Desi’s pocket, is one of the main reasons the show still looks so good today.

Oh, like the fact that Captain Kirk never actually says, “Beam me up, Scotty”, Dr. McCoy never says, “He’s dead, Jim”, and Humphrey Bogart never says, “Play it again, Sam”, Ricky Ricardo never says, “Lucy, you got some ‘splaining’ to do.”

Brandi and Lowell’s sister Sherry did the Annual MS Society Muckfest Run over in Baytown this morning. It’s a 5K obstacle course, with all of the 18 obstacles involving mud. Lots and lots of mud.

Brandi at Muckfest Run 1

Muckfest Start

Brandi at Muckfest Run

But it looks like they had fun.

About 3:15pm Jan and I headed into Katy to get together with Brandi, Lowell, and Landon, as well as friend’s Chantelle, Eric and Max.

But we made a first stop at Harbor Freight Tools to look for a couple of things. I was looking for a small jigsaw and a right angle polisher for the rig’s aluminum wheels.

After looking over what they had, I ended up with an air-powered polisher, since I can tap into the rig’s compressor, or use my Sear’s standalone model. And with no electric motor, it was cheaper too.

But the only jigsaws they had was an expensive cordless model, for more than I wanted to pay. So maybe a Home Depot sale.

By then it was time to meet up with everyone at a favorite new burger place. And by ‘new’, I mean it opened just a few days ago.

It’s Willy Burger. And of course they say it’s willy, willy good. And it was.

Unfortunately I didn’t get any photos.

Jan had the #47 burger, a double cheeseburger with mushrooms, grilled onions, and tomatoes, while I had the Hee Haw burger, a double with homemade pimento cheese, a fried green tomato, lettuce, and 3 strips of bacon. And it’s all topped off with a large dollop of red pepper jelly.

Along with orders of Parmesan Garlic Fries and Sweet Potato Fries, it was, as they say, Willy, Willy good!

From Amazon, I got a new hard drive for my 4 year old ASUS laptop. When I shut it off after we made our move from Lake Conroe to Colorado River this past Thursday, I got my second warning from the S.M. A. R. T. (Self-Monitoring, Analysis and Reporting Technology) software on the laptop, warning me that my hard drive was sickly and fading fast.

So I’ll make a .iso copy of the old one, put in the new one, and then copy everything back. And I’ll do this hopefully before it fails.

My second package was a new Otterbox Belt Clip for my Otterbox-encased Samsung Galaxy S5. The Otterbox case seems to be pretty bullet-proof, and has protected my S5 several times as it bounced down the rig stairs and on to the concrete with no problems.

But after three years one of the corners broke off the belt clip part so I ordered a new one.

Otterbox Belt Clip

Leaving on a high note, high as in rig count, the sign that we pass coming into Katy gave the US Rig Count as 539 (+15). When we came by on Thursday, it was at 524 (+2). So that means the count is +17 for the last two weeks.

So it certainly looks like the oil industry is coming back.


Thought for the Day:

“The nice part about being a pessimist is that you are constantly being either proven right or pleasantly 
surprised.” — George Will, columnist

 

 


October 15, 2017

BSOD and New Friends . . .

Jan and I spent the morning ‘running the numbers’ again, this time on whether or not it would be worthwhile to move down to the Clear Lake area for the rest of the year since it’s costing me about $280 a month in gas traveling down there 3 times a week.

It costs us $56/week here at Lake Conroe TT, so figuring TT and PA for a full months stay here, that’s $353.50. And when you add in the $280, it’s $635. And there are a number of parks down there in the $350 to $500/month plus electric. So it looks like it would be a good deal, BUT – are there any openings with FEMA, Insurance Adjusters, and Contractors down there too? So we’ll have to see.

One thing that makes it easy for us to “run the numbers” is that the Screen Mirroring function on my Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 is that it will talk directly to our 40” Samsung TV.

All I have to do is click the Screen Mirror button on the Tab and in a few seconds whatever is displayed on the Tab’s screen is duplicated on the TV.

Samsung Screen Mirroring Calc

Makes it really easy for both of us to watch a video, see a photo, or use a calculator.

About 2pm I went down to the Ranger Station to check out of the park under TT and then back in under PA. Considering how hard it had been to actually MAKE the PA reservation, I was expecting trouble, but that part went pretty smoothly.

It was when she went to print out our car passes that things fell apart. Just as soon as she clicked the PRINT button, the machine locked up . . .HARD. When nothing happened after 15 –20 seconds, she tried CTRL-ALT-DEL. At that point, after another short delay, she got this.

BSOD

The dreaded BSOD. Otherwise known as the Blue Screen Of Death

At this point the only thing she could do was to power off and back on. Then it took about 5 minutes to get Windows back up and working, and then about 10 minutes to get fully back into the program.

Then she was able to print out our passes.

It’s really problematic that this works at all since Thousand Trail’s entire reservation system is so old, that it’s a DOS program that they’re running on Win7. And I can pretty much guarantee that it won’t run under Win10 at all. No wonder they have so many problems with it.

About 4pm Jan and I headed back down to China Delight to have dinner with friends, old and new.

China Delight 4

The old ones are Debi and Ed Hurlburt on the left next to Jan, and Dick and Judy Mott on the right. And the new ones are Dave and Judy Evans in the back.

What’s funny with Dave and Judy is that we have so many mutual friends that it’s amazing we haven’t run into them before now. But in the RV world new friends quickly become old friends. That’s part of the fun

A great meal and a great time.

We need to replace the window awnings on our rig. One has a fist-sized hole in it, and they’ve all never really recovered from the drilling fluid drenching they got back in 2014 when a hose burst on the drill rig and soaked the area around it for about 50 yards, including us.

Now at the age of 18,  the rig’s gray-silver-light gray-cream paint scheme has faded a little, but still looks pretty good, so I wanted to brighten things up a little with these dark blue awnings instead of the original gray ones. This is not the exact color of blue that I’ve seen, but you’ll get the idea.

Beauty New Awnings 468

I tried a number of other colors, but I like the dark blue the best.

So let’s hear it from the peanut galley.

Just a note here. This color blue is what we ended up with.

The Word of the Day is: Moribund


Thought for the Day:

Political Correctness is Tyranny .. with manners. – Charlton Heston





October 15, 2018

Another Day, Another Shack . . .

Today, another one in our ‘Back Home in Titusville Tour’, we checked in with an old high-school friend of Jan’s, had a really good meal, visited family graves, had some more great food, did some grocery shopping, then came home and took a nap.

We needed it after all that.

We left the rig about 10am heading for Molly’s Seafood Shack out on Cocoa Beach. We were meeting up with Carol Burkott, an high-school classmate of Jan’s from when they both were in school in Chicopee Falls, MA.

Both their fathers were in the Air Force, and they were also members of the same church. Then a few years after Jan’s father retired down here, Carol’s family did also.

Carol was grand-baby sitting so she had 1 year old Alexander and 3 year old Leilani with her.

Molly's Seafood Shack Carol Burkott

Both were very well-behaved. and Alexander and I had a good time playing.

Molly’s is a local favorite, and folks were waiting in the parking lot for the place to open at 11:30. And the food showed why.

Jan had a nice salad, and then got the  Shrimp Tacos.

Molly's Seafood Shack Shrimp Tacos

I had a cup of their Roasted Chicken and Crab Corn Chowder,

Molly's Seafood Shack Roasted Chicken and Crab Chowder

and then went with the Southern Style Shrimp and Sausage Cheese Grits, and a ear of Roasted Corn, along with a really good Jalapeno Corn Muffin.

Molly's Seafood Shack Shrimp and Sausage Cheesy Grits

Everything was really delicious and will be on our list for a repeat visit next time we’re in the area.

Finishing up, with Carol et. all, following in her car, Jan ran into the nearby WalMart to buy flowers, and then we all heading back up toward Titusville to visit the graves of Jan’s parents, brother, sister, and niece.

Titusville Grave

Jan’s father died in 1994, and then Jan’s mother died in 2007.

Titusville Grave Bob and Trudy

I loved the inscription of Trudy’s gravestone, “I KEPT BREATHING AS LONG AS POSSIBLE”. Something both Jan and I aspire to, also.

Jan’s brother Wayne was buried here in 2000,

Titusville Grave Wayne

as well as Jan’s niece, Jaime, who was stillborn in 1981 to Jan’s younger sister, Beverly.

Titusville Grave Jaime

Then Beverly died in 2013 and her ashes were scattered over the family graves.

This leaves Jan’s sister, Debbie, her only remaining relative, who lives in Illinois.

Leaving the cemetery, and saying our goodbyes to Carol, we drove a little further north to the house where Jan was living when we met in 1967.

Titusville House

It really looks good. One thing we both remembered was that in 1967 there was a chain link fence surrounding the yard with a gate. The first time I came over to pick Jan up for a date, she opened the gate so I could drive into the yard.

And in doing so, she managed to slam the gate up against the side of my Triumph Spitfire. She said that from the pained look on my face she figured she’d never see me again.

She couldn’t get rid of me that easy, but it did hurt.

By this time it was almost 5 and we were getting hungry again. So since Jan had been ‘jonsing’ for some of the Clam Chowder at Dixie Crossroads. I had let her taste some of mine last week, and now she wanted her own.

We both got a bowl this time,

Dixie Crossroads Clam Chowder Bowl

which was large enough to have some to take home.

Then we split an order of broiled shrimp with their Steamed Veggies.

Dixie Crossroads Broiled Shrimp

One thing we’ve noticed on this visit is the proliferation of ‘chowders’. Maybe it’s got something to do with all the ‘Yankees’ moving down here from up north. But it’s kind of new here, at least to us.

Finishing up, and before heading home, we stopped off at the nearby Publix Supermarket for a few things.


For dinner tonight Jan got her fav Wedge Salad, but this time with Shrimp,

Seafood Shack Wedge Salad wShrimp

while I started off with a cup of their New England Clam Chowder / Roasted Red Pepper and Crab Bisque Swirl.

Seafood Shack Chowder-Bisque Mix

Like a swirled vanilla/chocolate ice cream cone, this is a swirl of both their soups, and it’s really great.

Next up for me was a Shrimp Lover’s Bucket, what in Louisiana/Texas we call a ‘Low Country Boil.

Seafood Shack Shrimp Lovers Bucket

Whatever it’s called, it was fantastic.

And Rachel, our waitress, was great too.

And tomorrow?

Well, who knows?


Thought for the Day:

I’m actually not really that funny. Sometimes I’m just mean and people think I’m joking. I’m not.

 

 


October 15, 2019

Still Finishing Up . . .

On the taxes so I can eFile them before midnight. So you get another of our Out West adventures in 2010, this time to the Sequoia National Park.


April 30, 2010

Some Really Big Trees…

Today we headed out to visit Sequoia National Park and Kings Canyon National Park. Leaving about 9 am we drove 70 miles south thru Fresno to the entrance to Sequoia National Park.

But before we left we set the crockpot on a timer so that when we came home we’d have a big pot of Tuscan Chicken Spaghetti waiting for us. Then we hit the road, heading toward Fresno, about 30 miles south.

Leaving Fresno, which is at 300 ft elevation, we starting the climb up into the Sierras, with some great views along the way. Click to enlarge the pictures!

SequoiaView

And just like yesterday we ran into snow. We started encountering it about 4500 feet, and it just got deeper the further up we went.

SnowRoad

SnowPile

SnowPile 2

When we got to the Ranger Station at Grants Grove at almost 7000 feet, we really saw the snow in deep drifts.

GrantsGrove

There was a lot more snow here in Sequoia than in Yosemite yesterday.

GrantsGrove2

After checking in at the Ranger Station and checking out the Gift Shop, we had to change our travel plans. We had planned to drive the big 60 mile loop thru the park and come out down south near Visalia. But we found that loop was closed due to the heavy snowfall and would not be open anytime soon. That meant we would not be able to see the General Sherman Tree, the largest tree in the world. Bummer!

But we would be able to see the 2nd largest tree, the General Grant tree, so we headed over to Grant’s Grove a couple of miles away to take a look.

This is the first big tree we saw right in front of our truck when we parked. It’s hard to convey how really big these trees are. The pictures really don’t do them justice.

SequoiaBase

And across the parking lot were these twins.

DoubleSequoias

And here is the General Grant tree. It’s 267 feet tall and about 35 feet in diameter. It is estimated to be over 1600 years old.

Grant Tree 3

And here is an internet picture of the General Sherman that we didn’t get to see. It’s about 275 feet tall and about 40 feet in diameter at the base. That’s bigger than our RV !  It’s between 2300 and 2700 years old. The spread of the branches at the top is almost 110 feet wide.

Sherman Tree

After viewing the trees, we went back to the lodge for a really good lunch at the restaurant, much better than the one at Yosemite yesterday.

Then after lunch, we drove out into the forest for about 10 miles just taking in all great scenery along the way.

SnowTree

SnowRoad 2

Then it was time to head home. Coming back down thru the mountains, we went thru several cloud layers, but by the time we got down to the bottom, it was clear and sunny again. And going from almost 7000 feet to 300 feet really makes the ears pop.

We got back about 3:30 to a coach filled with wonderful smell of our dinner cooking away.

We ate about 6 pm and it was great. It’s the first time Jan’s fixed this Tuscan Chicken Spaghetti, but we’ll definitely have it again.

Tomorrow is a take-it-easy day. We’re going to get together with some friends, George and Sandy, who we’ve corresponded with for awhile, but didn’t actually meet until this past March. We discovered yesterday that we’re both in the same park here.


Thought For The Day:

Diplomacy is warfare by other means. And Warfare is just diplomacy by other means.

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