Monday, May 3, 2010

Sunday-Monday recap

The winds here are not blowing too hard--nah, they are "only" gusting 39-43 mph!  The NWS people say gusts could be as high as 60 mph overnight.  'Tis spozed to blow this way until tomorrow evening.  Wind: a four letter word!

Luckily, we enjoyed a real nice walk on the Greenbelt yesterday while things were still calm and wonderful.  Most of Sunday was excellent.  We unpacked the big truck.  It was easy because we made a major seasonal shift here.  The Nissan is now parked outside.  The entire garage is converted to a Outdoor Store from May through September.  Nothing's for sale, of course, but the garage sure looks like an Outdoor Store.  We put all of our camping stuff inside the garage instead of in the basement.  We camp so much there's no point huffing and puffing up and down stairs with armloads of camping stuff.  It's SO much easier to rig for a trip and derig after a trip.  Our first camping excursion is fast approaching.  We will be camping no later than May 14th or 15th up at 6400 feet on the Salmon River near Stanley.  Most likely, we'll be camped there for at least 2 nights and probably 3 nights. There's absolutely no doubt that it's going to be VERY cold camping so we're doing our prep work well ahead of time.  It's nice to have the garage back as a mini-outfitter warehouse!

So far, the only camp chore I've actually finished today is preparation of what we call our "Light Box."  It's a .30 caliber ammo can painted red.  Inside, we have seven battery powered lights of different types, plus a lot of spare AA and AAA batteries, plus two thermometers.  There's 2 LED headlamps, 3 LED handheld flashlights and 2 LED table lamps.  There's a light for just about every occasion and circumstance.  All of the batteries have been double checked and the box is ready to roll.

One thing we've learned the hard way from years of traveling.  If you don't start getting ready really early, there's no way you will "have it together" for any given trip.  Frankly, you can't really start early enough.  I'd guess getting that Light Box ready today took me every bit of 90 minutes.  That sounds ridiculous, of course, but it's true.  I had to fix three of the lights and the battery testing is tedious, too.  Who's going to spend 90 minutes putting together a bunch of lights at the last minute?  Nobody I know!  We both really appreciate showing up at camp and knowing that everything in each of our boxes has been double checked and is ready to use without any Frustration Factor. It makes camping a whole lot more fun.

Susun did a real "number" cleaning the courtyard Sunday.  That's what led to the construction of the fire pit.  She cleaned the place so nice, we just had to have a fire.  She has a great touch with yard work and landscaping in general. She always has had.  She can make a place look so pretty so fast. 

We also readied two items for sale on Craig's List--a 16 foot canoe and a 4 x 6 cargo trailer.  Those items were posted today.  When they sell, we're going to put the proceeds toward purchase of a two person Lynx Aire inflatable kayak.  The Lynx is pricey--$1350, plus tax.  Ouch.  So, yeah, we gotta sell some stuff to afford to buy such an extravagant boat.  Getting both items ready actually meant a lot of extra work.  First, I had to build a place to protect all the spare tires that were sitting in the trailer.  That meant I had to rebuild the canoe racks.  One thing led to another and it took hours to stabilize the big mess that ensued when we began to get them ready.

Susun went and cleaned Connie's Bead Shop this morning,  I went early to the Parks & Recreation Commission meeting to talk with Carrie and Dave.  Carrie made a fine presentation about the art benches.  The P&R Chairman gave me a real nice "thank you" for my role in helping Carrie.  A little appreciation sure goes a long way!  After the Commission meeting ended, the Parks Superintendent Eddie and I went over to the railing job.  It's going to be a big danged job.  We both fear the existing paint is probably lead based paint.  That's going to complicate the job a lot.  Anyway, we agreed to proceed cautiously and be safe.  Eddie will get back to me when he gets all the various safety gear and tools lined up.  There's no way I would even consider messing with the job in a wind like we're experiencing!

I really enjoy being a member of the P&R Commission.  I sure hope they won't mind when we take off and miss 5 meetings in a row next fall-winter-spring!  Maybe they will let me participate via Skype or something.  You never know.

Susun spent the remainder of her day processing photos at Walgreen's and also SAM's.  SAM's does great 8 x 10 prints for a buck.  We are awash in 4 x 6 prints this evening.

First Street Welding nixed the idea of using the Harbor Freight tow bar and brackets.  No way.  No how.  Back to the drawingboards.

Susun and I spent some relaxing quality time looking at plants at the local Fred Meyer store (AKA: Freddie).  They have the best selection of annuals we've seen since we moved here.  Good Job, Freddie!  She will buy probably 20 4-packs tomorrow when they have their monthly Senior Day.  Us geezers get an additional 10% off.  One of my favorite hats I've seen on a geezer says, "I'm a Senior Citizen, Where's My Damned Discount?"

Then we went over to Ravsten Stadium and did laps up and down the stadium steps.  It's far too windy to be walking on the Greenbelt!  Now, the day is winding down and it's almost time to be Happy again.

OK, one last thought for ya'll today.  Over at the Parks Dept. Skyline Activity Center they have a bulletin board.  What Activity Center doesn't, eh?  Anyway, there's a big poster on the board that says this:

"Unattended children will be given an espresso and a free puppy."

What a great idea!

Cheers, jp

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