Saturday, November 11, 2006

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Howdy from Salem, Oregon! Land of much beauty and much rain. Can't have one without the other.

We wanted to thank all of you who have taken the time to read this blog during our recent travels. We've enjoyed writing it and it gives us a good record of the trip. We will be posting to the blog whenever we have photos worth sharing, funny stories, or brilliant ideas (this doesn't happen often). Please check in once in a while to see what's new. Most likely there will be weekly postings from now on, possibly more often.

Although we will be doing more traveling in the future, especially here in the Northwest, the phrase "road trip" is currently not allowed in this house. We covered about 5,400 miles since leaving Charlotte in October, so it's time for a little staying put! That doesn't make for very interesting blogging material, but I'm sure we'll be able to stir up a little excitement now and then.

Now go get ready for Christmas!!

Monday, November 06, 2006

Yesterday's adventures

We are back in Willows, California this evening, on our way up to Oregon. Yesterday we took a short trip up into the San Gabriel mountains to a little town called Wrightwood. Beautiful scenery, great little gift shops.

April (realizing that at nearly 8,000 feet, we all should have brought jackets), Bob and Rusti. Unfortunately, sister Jill had to work so she missed all the fun.

Sorry, Bob..... I have to tell this story. We parked in Wrightwood and got out to walk around to the shops. Bob immediately realized he had locked his keys in the truck. He went off to call AAA while Rusti, April and I went shopping. AAA showed up amazingly quickly, considering where we were, and got the door of the truck opened without too much trouble. Big sigh of relief from all of us until Bob announced that he couldn't find his keys inside the truck. Another 10 minutes or so of searching the truck inside and out turned up nothing. (April, already cold, continued to get colder as the sun went down.) The keys were finally located. They had slipped off the center console into the back, into my bag that was on the floor - naturally the last place we would look for them. Of course Bob will never live this down. Every time we got out of the truck for the rest of the day, Bob was bombarded with three women asking him if he had his keys. Fortunately, Bob is a very patient man. Thanks for the fun day!!

We will be back home in Salem, Oregon sometime tomorrow afternoon and can continue getting settled in. We both miss Malcolm a lot!

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Horsing around

Here are a few pictures from our visit to the stables this morning. Bob and Jill have a couple of horses and we had fun feeding them carrots and rubbing their heads.

Rusti, April and Jill. You can't tell that they're sisters, can you?

Jill and Rusti.

Kathy, with a little sliver of Bob on the right-hand side of the picture.

We're off sight-seeing this afternoon, so I should have more pictures to post later today.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

From Ventura to Palmdale

This used to be the courthouse in Ventura. I'm not sure what it's being used for now, but it's a neat building.

Rusti can't get used to the fact that the sun SETS, not rises, in the ocean out here.

One of the Ventura beaches. I'd like to say this photo was taken at an artistic angle, but I think Rusti just had her left foot in a big hole.

Main Street, Ventura California.

Rusti got to see her grand-niece Bentleigh Rose for the first time today.

Hi all,

This evening we are in Palmdale, California, which is the high desert of Antelope Valley. We will be visiting here until Tuesday morning, when we'll head back home towards Oregon. We are staying with Rusti's sister Jill's family (in a REAL house with HOME-COOKED food!). Rusti's sister April is also visiting here, so it's a mini-family reunion.

The San Andreas fault runs right through Palmdale. I hope I fall asleep before I have too much time to think about this. April assures me that it has been there a long time.

Rusti here:

I want to tell you all I had good reason to worry about the fog last night. I lived in San Francisco many years ago. One evening we went to a baseball game at Candlestick Park and coming back from the game the fog started to come in. Now fog in California is not like fog anywhere else. It's alive! It doesn't just kind of drift in, it crawls and creeps and insinuates its fingers into everything it passes. It's like the corpuscles in "Fantastic Voyage"! Well, we tried to beat it back to the city but didn't. We weren't able to see past the taillights of the car in front of us and ended up following it into a garage! We finally did get home (I'm here, aren't I?!) but I still don't like the fog!

Goodnight and sleep well.

The too-small house in Ventura

Some of you, especially BLAKE, have asked to see a photo of the house in Ventura that turned out to be too small for us, so here it is:


Friday, November 03, 2006

Southern California revisited

It was a day of many trucks, huge pistachio orchards, cotton fields (neither of us realized they grew cotton in California), giant salad bars on both sides of the freeway, and my favorite: eucalyptus trees. We arrived in Ventura about 4:30 this afternoon and it was warm and sunny, but the fog was just beginning to creep ashore from the ocean. Rusti was scared because she'd recently watched "The Fog", but I think she's going to be OK.

We had a nice Mexican dinner with my aunt, then re-addressed all our boxes to ship via UPS tomorrow. We'll be heading on to Palmdale as soon as we get our shipping done.

Our motel room tonight is near the railroad tracks, which is exciting every hour or so. But at least it takes Rusti's mind off the fog for a couple of minutes.

I hope tomorrow will be better for taking pictures. Today we didn't see any sunshine until we were within about 100 miles of Ventura. I hope you all enjoy today's exciting photo of Interstate 5.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

On the road again....

Tonight finds us in Willows, California, on our way back to Ventura to pick up (or ship) all the STUFF we originally shipped there from North Carolina. Despite the fact that we sold, gave away, or threw out almost everything we owned prior to the move, we still ended up shipping many boxes to California, and now we need to get them up to Oregon. We're going to combine this "business" with a short visit to Rusti's other sister, Jill, and her family in Palmdale.

Malcolm decided to stay in Salem rather than accompany us on this trip, and we missed him during the drive today. Somehow it just doesn't seem right stopping at a motel for the night without a cat box.

Things are about halfway settled in Salem, and when we return from this trip we plan to stay put there for a few months. Probably. Maybe. Rusti likes the new digs because she just got a new 57" high-definition TV (man, those football players are BIG!) as well as a very comfortable couch and recliner. (Rusti's title in retirement is C.P.A. - Couch Potato Ace). I'm happy with the new digs because I have a fast internet connection and a nice office. I'm sure there's something wrong with both of our priorities, but I'm not going to worry about it at the moment. Anyway, everything is working out well, even if not as expected.

Both Rusti and I have much personal emailing to do, but that probably won't happen until after this trip is over. For those of you who have written to us, we have not forgotten you - we're just a little overwhelmed at the moment. At least that's our excuse and we're sticking to it.

Below are a few pictures from our previous trip from California to Oregon, the route we are now traveling in reverse. Well, actually we're going forward, not in reverse. That would take too long.

Malcolm on his way to Oregon.
Mt. Shasta didn't have much snow on it when we first drove up to Salem. (Now it does, but we have no pictures to prove it.)
The forest primeval. The northwest really is beautiful. It smells great too.