Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Saying 'Goodbye' to Aunt Louise's House

It has been a busy couple of weeks in Ft. Worth and the most noteworthy activity has been saying "Goodbye" to Aunt Louise's house.  


I had a few pictures in last year's blog postings that showed the HUGE amount of 'things' that Aunt Louise had amassed over her 96 years of life.  Those things were sold in a giant Estate Sale last May and June.

The house was then put up for sale and it was quickly purchased by the owners of an adjoining ranch.  

The new owners wanted it as a guest house, primarily for their children and grandchildren.

Walls were removed, bathrooms were gutted and new tile put in...

New fixtures....

new cabinetry. 

A transformation is definitely underway.

The backyard, once overgrown with vegetation.... now opened up.

Aunt Louise laments the loss of her wildflowers and worries about the wildlife that lived on the property.  But not all has been lost. The new owners have assured her that the wildlife will be protected.  And the irises that her mother (Grandma)  planted over 50 years ago are suddenly much easier to see.

It is undeniably hard to close this door on a life that she was most proud of.  It is something we never, deep down,  think we will have to face.  However, none of us escapes it.  Life changes, sometimes more rapidly and other times so slowly we hardly notice.  Still it changes.
How complacent will I be when I have to give up the keys to the RV?  Not very, I suspect.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

West Texas --Bring on the Locusts.

The wind stopped by the next morning.  I headed east out of El Paso with no whirling dust clouds in sight, lots of sun,  a determination that West Texas would not defeat me and a new mini-vacuum to clean up  the grit.


This part of the US is the least inviting of all my travels but, since it is the fastest route to Ft Worth, I go as fast as I can.  I even break my 'only 3-hours-driving-per-day' rule to get it over with faster.

By the time I reached Midland it was raining--hard--and did not stop for 24 hours.  Daisy and I sat in the Cracker Barrel parking lot and waited.

If I thought the sandstorm was the worst West Texas would throw at me, I was wrong.  Spirit sprang a leak!  Right over Daisy's bed.  The whole upper bunk
 above the driver's and passenger's seats was wet.  Very wet.

Another day lost.  Immediately,  I unloaded all the storage stuff off the wet bunk-- and there was a lot of stuff.

 I raised the mattress up onto glasses to dry it out and set up a fan is to try and stop mildew. 

The water stains on the mattress (note the stains to the left of the fan) are my souvenir.   The turmoil of boxes would torture me for a week before I could get into Camping World to find and seal the leak.

My reward was to finally see Aunt Louise and Suzanne again.

 I would be camping in the parking lot behind Aunt Louise's apartment complex for the next few weeks.


Daisy was so happy to see grass instead of sand, rocks and cactus.  The moment she jumped out of the RV she stretched out in the soft cool green carpet , with legs spread-eagle,  and just lay there.  I think she was also frustrated by the grit, the inability to move around in our living space,  the rain, and the confinement caused by endless driving.

One week later Camping World went to work and recaulked every place they could find on the roof.  Last night we experienced another major rain storm--HOORAY!  No water anywhere inside!
Did I mention how much I enjoy crossing West Texas?

Saturday, April 1, 2017

I Need a Rest!

What a harried week!

Getting ready to hit the road means: 
tons of errands--groceries, laundry, carwash, top off the propane, Petsmart for a dogwash,  

cleaning the RV (found an errant onion that was looking for a garden);

 vehicle maintenance (oil change, wheel alignment); 
wash all bedding including dogbed; 
                                                          last minute doctor visits;
                                                                   forward mail;
                                          and finally, farewell lunches and dinners with friends...



Suzie and Bailey 

Bailey (who didn't like sharing his balls with Daisy)

Lynda and Karen

Me with Nancy

Don and Mikey

and Stuart.

Daisy was getting very impatient to get on the road.... 

Her favorite spot is to stand on the stairs and gaze longingly out the screen door.

...and when I fail to pay attention to her she has a unique way of getting my attention. (I am so sorry but the dog ate the gas bill.)

Finally!  We were on the road with a stop on Thursday night at the Sunland Casino in New Mexico.  At 8 AM Friday morning I awoke to the sound of thundering hooves...

...and discovered that we had parked right next to the Sunland race track!  

Daisy thought those big dogs were most entertaining,

We did a lot of horserace watching until the wind chased us back inside the RV.  High wind warnings were on the radio and the roads had become hazardous.  The day before we had passed two big rigs on the highway that were flipped on their sides --I did not want to become another casualty. The wind gusts were even stronger by 10 AM on Friday--clocking to 40 MPH according to the news so we spent a leisurely day rocking to the wind and watching the races from our window.

By Noon the dust in the air was like a thick fog.  The mountains had completely disappeared
and I was beginning to feel grit everywhere I put my hand.

The doors and windows were closed but the sand and dirt were still drifting in.  My clean RV was suddenly filthy--including my bed!  But the horse races continued long into the afternoon!  That seemed like the ultimate in animal cruelty to me.
This morning the wind  died completely and we are traveling again.  Next on the agenda--I am stopping at a Walmart in El Paso and buying a vacuum cleaner!