Saturday, July 26, 2008

Counting down to M day

Well, Monday is moving day. The day we look forward to with dread, horror and relief. I think we're in good shape, but it's hard to tell. People who have moved and haven't completely blocked the memory can relate to the phenomenon of you keep putting stuff in boxes and the rooms just don't look any different; there's still stuff everywhere. We've moved past that point, but yet, we did come home from a delightful outing today and managed to stuff the bed of the pickup for yet another dump run. Tomorrow we have people coming over for my sewing and craft tables. The woman who answered the ad has 11 children. Eleven. There will also be people coming over for the weight bench and all of the day to day dishes and glasses. It's cheaper to buy new, and I'm tired of them all, anyway. The idea of lightning the load is appealing, but I have to tell you, it's been difficult. We have to keep reminding ourselves that just because we've had it forever, or it belonged to someone's parent(s) or it was a gift, it's not that person. You can remember that person without keeping their stuff. It's been harder than I thought it would be.

We got out of the house today. We drove up to Richmond and had lunch with a friend I made in the 80's in DC. We were house mates the summer I interned at the EPA. We were in Georgetown, which is the coolest part of DC. It was the best summer. We had lunch in the cafe of the Gintner Botanical Gardens. It was really fun catching up, seeing her husband again and meeting her daughter. Jim and I did not have time to tour the gardens, but it looks like a place worth returning to.

Sunday or Monday I'll be unplugging the cable modem which will kill internet and phone service for us. Our cell only works sporadically in the house, so if you can't reach us, don't worry, we're just off the grid. Hopefully we'll have better cell service in South Carolina. My cell phone might as well be a Twinkie here.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Continuing to pack it all up, again.

Preparing for the move continues at a feverish pace. Jim and I are fairly stressed and tired. I'm not sleeping which is adding to my general level of crankiness.

Below is a southern bug. No idea what it is, other than big.

Laurence came up July 20 to pick up his trailer and his massive collection of bikes. The day dawned humidly with water vapor standing in the air. A portent of the day that would come.

It's so hot. It was just unbelievable. Laurence had to reassemble the trailer, build a new box for it and load it. Hot, just hot.

I was out walking around our vast yard and I kept smelling something. At first I thought something had died and I was smelling dead animal. But the smell was diffuse and dispersed over a wide area. We've had a lot of fungal growth due to the humidity and rain. These things STINK! That's a toad stool or a mushroom, by the way. Hairy little thing.

Almost final assembly on the trailer. It has great utility. It also folds up if you take the box off of it. Stores in about 15 inches.

If the house closes and if my head doesn't explode and if the sun doesn't go supernova, our new mailing address is as follows:

3700 S. Westport Ave.
Sioux Falls, SD 57106

Right now I'm having them hold everything for awhile. So, let me know if you've mailed something. We've decided to domicile in SD.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The criterium in Lexington NC

Here's an AVI from the criterium from our one day vacation. I have more pictures, but haven't gotten around to actually looking at them. This is pretty cool, though. These are the masters racers, the old guys. I don't know if you can see it, but look at my shadow on the road. You might be able to see my hair fly up from the wind generated as these guys go around the corner.


Lexington was pretty cute. They have a viable downtown.

Friday, July 11, 2008

It's ALWAYS somthing

We had a beautiful vacation planned. Friday night in Lexington NC for a criterium, Saturday at the Highland games, then a week in Asheville where it would be less hot and humid. We were going to see my friend Sheldon and her family, and have fun. Notice the use of the past tense. Were. But we're not. The house sold. I should be happy, and I am, but I really wanted to go on vacation! We've got the RV loaded to the gills, and we were READY. But no, after a night in Lexington, doing a little shake down cruise of the RV, we're going back in the morning to sign papers and start ejecting some belongings and packing others.
We have to be out of the house July 30. We're going to my brother Laurence's house with some of our stuff, and stuff that will become his, and then we plan to head out into the great unknown that is America's RV parks. I certainly hope we like it!
After all this violating of my vacation, one hopes that the sale will proceed smoothly. Jim just came out and told me to quit counting my chickens until they've hatched.
Anyway, that's what we're doing (and not doing).

Saturday, July 5, 2008

4th of July from Nature

This is an edited avi of a really good T-storm. The original was too big to upload, but here's one good crack of thunder. If you've never experienced a Southern storm, this one was pretty good. All the local fireworks displays were canceled due to wind, hail and lightening strikes. Apparently the traffic jams were just staggering with people trying to get away from the weather. We stayed home and watched Burn Notice reruns. Better.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Walking about in Seattle

This is downtown Bellevue. For years Bellevue has been an also ran to Seattle. But on this trip it appears that Bellevue is coming in to its own. They are building everywhere. The whole sky line is changing. A lot of what's being built is business on the ground floor and condos up. The city is starting to feel like an actual city, instead of a suburb. We enjoyed the urban hiking.

A skyway between shopping centers in downtown Bellevue.

The park in downtown. It's big, really nice. The Sunday we were there was the Seafair marathon. The park was the finish line. It was HOT. Particularly for Puget Sound, normally in June we're still in fleece.

This is taken from the scenic overlook on Admiral on the way to West Seattle. The wretched trees are going to block the scenic pretty soon. We love our trees in Seattle.

Here we are driving down the Alaskan Way Viaduct. Seattle gets cruise ships now. Big ones.

This was taken off of the deck of Jim's mother's house. She lives on Agate Pass on the Kitsap peninsula. It's lovely over there, really quiet, but it's behind a ferry. Geographically undesirable, especially if you have to go to work on the mainland. Summer rates were in effect, for two people to go from Seattle to Winslow with a car is $20. That would add up.

So, this ends my internet clogging photo tour of how we spent last week in the Puget Sound region.

Hiking in Seattle

While in Seattle, we did the Chiraco trail up to Poo-Poo point a couple of times. In the past, when we lived in Puget Sound, we would always do the trail for time, so we had our heads down going as fast as we could. We did this hike A LOT. So, since we're not that fit at the moment (there are no hills in Wake Forest), we were hiking slowly and looking around. Look at what we saw on the trail. All those years of hikes and we never noticed this vista about midway up the trail. Sometimes slowing down has its advantages.

Next two photos, we are at the top. At the top there is another view of Mt. Rainier.

Ok, who watched Grey's Anatomy? Remember McDreamy's alleged land upon which he and Grey would build their dream house and raise children? It had the astonishing view. I'm pretty sure this is where they filmed it from. This is the top of Tiger Mountain.

There was not a lot of wind yet, but a couple of paragliders decided to launch anyway.

Going back down, we are always impressed by the lushness of the Pacific Northwest.

Retiring in Seattle

So, last week we went to Seattle for V's retirement party. It was a fabulous celebration of making it through to the other end of the working world. Retirement is just wonderful. No more getting up so dang early, and no more people telling you to do stuff that you think is stupid. From now on, all my stupid stuff will be self-initiated.
We flew from Raleigh to Dulles. They had these cardboard things of Obama and McCain. They were very popular. All of the tourists were taking pictures. We could not tell which candidate was getting more attention.

Decks in Seattle get mold. Before the party, the men had to bleach and scrub the deck. Part of the effort was to move the pots and then put them back. It's a big deck, there was a lot of bleach. There's also a lot of tree goo adding to the job.

Eventually, all was loveliess outside.

Inside the women were cooking for 60. This is how you do French potato salad. One dumps the hot drained potatoes on the counter and then sprinkles them with vinegar. They cool faster, and while cooling, they suck up the vinegar. This was the first of two batches, and was the smaller of the two.

Chicken marinating. It's a good marinade, hoison sauce. Mmmmmm.

But the main attraction are D's ribs. He makes the rub himself. There were 14 slabs of barbequed goodness.

Each foil package is a slab. Yes, we are meat central.

Is this not lovely? I like the colors of the Greek salad in the red serving bowl.

The party was a great success. Lot's of good food and nice people. We are really glad we went, it was fun. For some reason I did not get that many pictures of the actual party. And I'm still thinking about the ethics of putting peoples' pictures on the web without explicit permission. Of course, Jim is fair game. So, I'm leaving it primarily to food and scenery. There will be more later, I'll be clogging up the internet with more pictures.