Monday, September 30, 2013

Cheryl's party

It was two years ago, in August, that I, along with Alexandra, was invited to a party at Cheryl Kirk's new home.  

The house was pretty much empty at that time as her furniture had not arrived from Alabama by the day of the party...

She actually brought boxes and boxes of glass from Alabama---although I think she might have found glass in New Mexico. At least she didn't bring any rocks or cactus with her.

Now the house is filled with interesting objects, art,  and especially friends.

Alexandra in the entryway.  Cheryl did the leaded glass around the door.

The kitchen is the center of the house.
  But I could camp out in this bathtub.

Tim and Stacey Burge on the left were visiting from Amarillo; hostess, Cheryl (center) and Gary Walden (far right).  Gary just purchased an RV of his own (another convert!), named it 'the Gambler' and will be exploring 'parts unknown' very soon.

James Fox found the fireplace and a brew.

It was learned that Tim was celebrating a momentous birthday and, boy was he surprised when the cake appeared.

 Cheryl, Gary, Stacey, Tim, James Raybol (artist) and Alexandra. 

Friday, September 27, 2013

Gallery Grazing in Santa Fe

The rain followed me all the way to Santa Fe.  But the 12V system continued to work just fine.  I do not understand how a seemingly vital part (like an isolator--whatever that is) can be bypassed altogether and have the system work better than ever. Like removing your gall bladder?

Anyway, I finally made it back to Santa Fe; my second trip here, two years and one month from the day I left Tucson.

However, decisions now have to be made.  I started the journey with the idea that I could see it all in two years.

Well, No, I didn't see it all.  Not even close. Though I did see 24 states, Washington DC, Canada (BC and Alberta) and the Virgin Islands.

And in three weeks Aunt Louise and I are going to fly to Hawaii to visit my sister, Mary, and her husband, Jim.

So I still have 1/2 the US, Alaska, and Nova Scotia (on my bucket list) to see.

What are my plans from here?  Do I want to keep traveling? That is a silly question.  This has been an incredible adventure and the thought of stopping now is painful even to think about.  I am only 1/2 through the US, and my wanderlust addiction has merely grown stronger.

So, I will think about it tomorrow, but for now, Scarlet, my dear,
 you can spend a few pleasant days with dear, dear friend, Alexandra Stevens.

Alexandra was once my boss, many years ago in Houston, when she owned an art newspaper and I was her production manager.

Then some years later I moved to California and was managing a small Bed and Breakfast and Alexandra moved there as well to open an art gallery in Carmel. For a short time she worked for me at the B&B, hence we have been each other's bosses--and we still like each other.

It has been another one of those fun relationships that endures.  I count her as one of my honorary sisters and as such, the reason this trip has been so rewarding.

I think I am going to add to my bucket list, "A trip to the Louvre with Alexandra".   Followed by a glass of wine in a sidewalk cafe overlooking the Seine.

But that is way down the road....  

I have miles to travel, yet, and decisions to make.

In the meantime, I'll relish the friendship, and toast it with another glass of wine.

(I could not get rid of those time and date stamps on the photos--grrr! I am as 'untechnical' as I am 'unmechanical')

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Cars, Planes and a Burned Up Isolator.

Well, it had to happen sooner or later.  I have been plagued by 12 volt problems from day one and, even though I thought my 'mad scientist friend' had solved the mystery, no such luck.

I was on the freeway and headed south towards New Mexico at 60 MPH when every light on my dashboard came on and an alarm began to loudly reverberate around my ears.

I was right next to an off-ramp so I veered sharply off the freeway, down the ramp and coasted into a Carl's Jr parking lot--where the engine died--dead! Really, Really Dead! My rear end was barely off the street and I was half blocking Carl's entry to the 'drive thru'--but, thankfully, I wasn't on the freeway.

It was a really nice young man who responded to my 'Road-side Assistance' call... 

And hauled me away to a mechanics shop... 
Where I spent two days and a night.  I must say, I have had better parking spots.  But the outcome is still somewhat unsettled....
*The alternator is okay
*The computer is okay
*The batteries are okay
*The fuse has blown again
*And the isolator is fried.
It seems that a large surge of voltage (excuse my garbled analysis--car mechanics are not something I understand even a little bit) has been bombarding various parts of the motor's innards and no one seems to know where it is coming from.  After disconnecting and bypassing the isolator the three very friendly mechanics sent me on my way with the admonition to not run my battery down because nothing was protecting my car battery and I could get stranded--again.  Hmm.  So I went out and bought a solar panel should I need to revive a dead battery.

And before leaving Colorado Springs I found this very unique restaurant.

It is out by the airport...

The waitresses and hostess were in uniform.

"Walk this way."

I had a window overlooking the wing--somehow on every plane ride I am always overlooking the wing.

The waitress/stewardess invited the customers to explore the cockpit.

So, Jamie, this is for you.

PS..The RV is running great and the batteries are fully charged even after running the overhead fan and the lights for hours at night.  My fingers are crossed that good luck continues.  But it is still raining.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Sally and friends

My special friend Suzie in Tucson has an extra-special sister named Sally in Centennial, Co.  So I stopped to say 'Hello' and ended up staying several days...

Sally is a school teacher,

...and a lover of 4-legged critters.

...and clearly they love her too.

At the very least, they think she is the best place to 'hang out'.

Treat time brings the entire household out. 
Even the bashful cat showed up for a treat.    
 We tried to introduce Sigh Me to the mix but she would have none of that 'sharing stuff'.

One day some friends were invited over for a 'play date'.

The owner came too...

....and a few more of 'mom's friends.'

Sally and I took one afternoon and went to Colorado's great new history museum...

...and had as much fun as a couple of kids.

Sally was better at milking...

and skiing...

But my expertise is in driving.

Oops!  Excuse me, Sally.

Kids and dogs are so fun to photograph.

Thanks for the lovely time, Sally.