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Old 07-20-2020, 06:22 PM   #6481
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Possibly.

Maggie
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Old 07-22-2020, 12:55 PM   #6482
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We head out tomorrow for our HistoriCorps project, and I’ve spent the last few days cleaning most things inside the Interstate.

The only thing I don’t like about Wyoming is the dust, which finds its way into and permeates everything.

Worse because the National Forest/park campsites are all on dirt roads. Not only campers but those who must simply drive thru to look churn dust up a dozen or more times each day.

One campground I was in last week, I was walking Lily one morning when the garbage truck came barreling thru...no mind the 5mph speed limit...enveloping everything, including us, in a cloud of dust as tall as the vehicle.

However, but for the day/night shades, everything in here can be wiped down and cleaned up.

So, that’s what I did, including the rear storage area and under the rear bench, because between the dust and the dog...

I like.

Other than cleaning, walking Lily, crocheting, reading and catching up with my kids and other folks on the phone.

It is supposed to be nearly 100 degrees here today...nice to have the air conditioning.

I don’t look to have signal after tomorrow afternoon until I leave the project on Monday, so don’t anyone worry.

Maggie
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Old 07-27-2020, 12:02 PM   #6483
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We have completed a very interesting HistoriCorps project, are back in Cody for the night, and will start the trek home in the morning.

This was an Architectural History Project, where volunteers along with trained staff were photographing and documenting in written form cabins within the Shoshone National Forest.

Unlike anything we have done so far, and more physically challenging in that there was a fair amount of uphill climbing at elevation, from cabin to cabin on mountain roads unfit for regular vehicles.

Yikes. On my feet and moving much of the day was expected, uphill climbing...not so much.

However, we got thru it and it was a great experience in spectacular scenic locations.

Lots and lots of cautions from the forest service regarding bears, tho staff saw a momma and her cub one evening they did not venture into camp and we saw none on our work days.

We had a particularly fierce and Wyoming style thunder storm one evening, with lots of rain and high winds, causing those in tents to evacuate for a period to the ranger station...one of the advantages to being off the ground and in a hard sided vehicle.

One mishap last evening with a volunteer using one of those little one burner stoves...that capsized and the fuel caught fire, causing me to deploy one of my new Fire Blankets, which proved completely ineffective against burning fuel being continuously fed from its source.

https://www.amazon.com/Blanket-Guard...a-871028268648

Put out by one of the staff with a fire extinguisher, Doug would call it “no harm, no foul” as nothing and no one outside the fuel caught fire, as the fire occurred on a cement pad.

However, a story that will be shared, I am sure.

We are tired, and I look for Lily to be a doorstop the next few days, as she got a greater than usual amount of fresh air and exercise.

She was the only dog on this project, so just got to be her sweet and appreciated self.
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Old 07-29-2020, 07:50 AM   #6484
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After about 6 hours on the road yesterday, we stopped for the night at a lovely little FREE city park and campground in Douglas, WY.

They offer parallel parking around a grassy and immaculate area with picnic tables and elevated grills, along the North Platte River which runs thru the town.

An Airstream trailer behind us, several fifth wheels and a tent spent the night here.

Moderate temps conducive to dry camping, good signal.

We slept well.
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Old 07-29-2020, 10:06 AM   #6485
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I am so glad you are enjoying the beauty of our state! My husband and I were just up in Sheridan last week, and learned the dreaded mistake of what not to do in 102 degree heat. Being newbies it was a good first lesson to learn from!
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Old 07-29-2020, 10:20 AM   #6486
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Having been to a couple of Airstream events in Gillette, we have travel though Douglas several times. There are many more antelopes than people living in that area...
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Old 07-29-2020, 10:40 AM   #6487
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Quote:
Originally Posted by azflycaster View Post
Having been to a couple of Airstream events in Gillette, we have travel though Douglas several times. There are many more antelopes than people living in that area...
There are more antelope than people in our entire state...that's the beauty of it! We have approximately 560k in population, which is less than the population let's say in Denver proper.
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Old 07-29-2020, 03:58 PM   #6488
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Yep, Wyoming has become one of my favorite states, with the bluest skies and whitest clouds I think I have ever seen.

We poked along across Wyoming and into Nebraska today, including a loooong stretch of roadwork on US20 around Lusk that has coated my little Interstate with dirt.

Many golden fields of just-cut hay out here that are so beautiful I wanted to just walk them and absorb that fresh cut smell. Picture-perfect and lovely.

An oncoming truck on 2-lane US 20 tossed something into my windshield this morning...I thought it was a rock from the sound it made, but looking at it more closely I am not so sure.

Yes, I will have the windshield replaced when I get home.

We are in another little city park campground for the night, in Nebraska....no hookups, but by a creek, with showers and all of $5.

Have picked out a Blue Beacon off I80 we are going to head for in the morning , then will make a beeline for home.
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Old 07-31-2020, 02:36 PM   #6489
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I thought we would be home at least by today, but we are not.

Tucked into a city campground for the night that is just inside the Iowa line, and should be home late morning tomorrow.

Why so long, you ask???

Because, yesterday I had engine trouble of some sort, not being able to accelerate beyond 60 mph or so...so was slower than I should have been on I80 and was stopping frequently to turn the engine off and rest it in the hopes that whatever was amiss would reset itself.

It apparently did in the night, as we crossed the entirety of Iowa today on highway 2, with no problems whatsoever.

I stopped and read my owners manual , googled the problem, watched my dash carefully for signs of overheating, and just kept on going.

The check engine light came on early in the issue, and is still on. Whatever upshifting happens when one accelerates, forgive me for not knowing the proper mechanical terminology, the engine was working hard but just wouldn’t go past a certain point.

Given no problems whatsoever today, I am wondering if I got some bad fuel, and filling up with Shell diesel yesterday afternoon solved the problem.

I topped the tank off yesterday morning somewhere, only 8 or so gallons, and the problem started after that.

I had decided in the night that I would call Jon my trusted mechanic this morning if I was still having problems, and pick his brain as to whether I should try to find someone to look at it or keep plugging along for home as long as it wasn’t overheating.

But, no problems today, and we covered the entire state of Iowa...tho on the 2 lane, with a 55 mph speed limit, I was at 60 or just above many times and had no problems accelerating.

It was raining as we approached the Blue Beacon I was going to stop at, so the rig is still absolutely filthy, and I plan to stop at ours at home as I come into town tomorrow.

Hopefully.

I will, of course, be having the Interstate serviced when I get home, and will advise Jon of this problem.

Maggie
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Old 08-01-2020, 02:43 PM   #6490
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I suggest keeping a quart of Power Service (white bottle At Walmart) that helps when water at the bottom of the Shell tank gets delivered into your tank)
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Old 08-01-2020, 02:47 PM   #6491
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Hmmm...

Iíve never heard of that, but it was the Shell fill up that seemed to fix it, not what caused it.

But thanks!

Maggie
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Old 08-02-2020, 06:42 AM   #6492
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We are home as of mid day yesterday, after a stop at the Blue Beacon just a few miles from my home.

Mornings are the best time to go there, rarely one of those 1 1/2 hour waits in line.

All bits of bug and grime...gone.

They are soooo worth the money.


I could have driven on home on Friday, but couldn’t face having to empty out the Interstate that late in the day.

Dirty laundry from two solid weeks, food, clean clothing, the refrigerator needing emptied, etc...not an end-of-day task, for me.

So, yesterday afternoon in our campground I shook out the rugs, cleaned the inside throughly and swept the floors of three days worth of dog hair and crud that had accumulated on the drive home.

We were on the road by 7 am yesterday, topped off the fuel tank again and experienced no problems with the engine.


I not only have the circular windshield crack, but another linear one I noticed that is behind the rear view mirror.

Not sure when that happened, but the occasional bird strike occurs when driving in the country, in particular, and I suspect that is the cause.

It will definitely need to be replaced, on my to do list for tomorrow.


Driving thru Iowa on Hwy 2 Friday, then Route 9 across Illinois yesterday, the ghosts of years past filled my head with visual and visceral memories.

Places in Iowa from Doug’s life before me, then ours together, in Illinois where he once worked, where I worked, where we worked together...the murder-suicide one year, right before Christmas, driving over here following the snow plow in a frigging blinding snowstorm...meeting a Grandma at that Emergency Room after taking custody of her small grand baby...the foster parents who lived right over there...the little guy I saved almost singlehandedly from the system whose loving Aunt and her partner lived here, and took him in to raise...how many times did we drive this particular road going to pick up grandkids for a weekend.

And more.

Like one of those carnival funhouses, where you go thru and things pop up on both sides of you, tho yesterday it was decades of memories of all sorts, sifting up like ghosts from the sides of roads often traveled.

Good times and bad, we are our memories.


Lots of thinking time when driving, and Doug has often come to me during long drives these past 6 1/2 years.

He helped me plan his funeral during the drive home from Georgia, and has guided me many times on many different things...his words coming into my head as clearly from him as if he were standing next to me.

Always helpful, always providing the clarity I can’t always find to try his best to lead me gently thru whatever. A good thing.

Then last evening, looking determinedly for my favorite recipe for freezer pickles, I came across in my recipe box a handwritten one from him for Au Gratin Potatoes, that he must have given me to store when we blended our households.

Written on a piece of notepad letterhead from his step fathers insurance company in Wellman, Iowa...I would guess at least 35 years ago.

I can see Doug, sitting at their kitchen table in the old farmhouse, writing down carefully his mother’s directions for something she cooked for him that he loved.

Surfacing in an odd place, at the end of a long day, when I had felt he was with me.

Yep, he says...I was.

Going to set it in the small drawer that was his in my dresser, where his wallet and some other personal items still live...all to go to his daughter at some point, when I am ready to box them up...along with his cologne, still resting in his side of my medicine cabinet.

Sigh. Life. And death.

And, we go on.

Maggie
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:32 AM   #6493
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Iím not sure if I want to smile or cry. Or both. God bless.
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:46 AM   #6494
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Old 08-02-2020, 12:17 PM   #6495
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Yes.

I smiled when I found that recipe, in his handwriting, having gotten up out of my evening reading nest to find the Freezer Pickles recipe so I wouldn’t wake in the night trying to remember where it was.

I smiled because he is still there, and because...in case I ever doubt it...periodically he wants me to know he is there.


After nearly three hours on FaceTime this morning, with a friend in Ontario and then my daughter, I finished up all the laundry and made a run to the grocery store so that I can make these tomorrow.

Because I want them, and I’ve been veggie deficient this trip.

These freezer pickles, mounded on sliced fresh tomatoes, are a meal.

Looking at the recipe, it was clipped from our local newspaper who knows how many years ago...possibly when we were first in this house 35 years ago, had planted a garden and had our first of many bumper crops of cucumbers.


My friend in Ontario lost her husband this past spring, from a brain tumor. Doug and I had met them in Louisiana early in our retirement travel, and she and I have gotten especially close.

She just returned from her first trip by herself, to BC to visit her daughter and family.

I remember those days vividly.

She intends to keep on traveling, and is thinking about moving from the Lance truck camper into something more like mine.

We will get together once the border is again open, and I am looking forward to that.
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Old 08-02-2020, 01:51 PM   #6496
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I was wondering which Freezer Pickle recipe that you use? The first one in the article?

Would you mind sharing Doug's recipe?

Thank you for posting all the info about the History Corps experience!

Katy
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Old 08-02-2020, 02:12 PM   #6497
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Hi Katy!

I use the second recipe in that clipping, the one with the lines I drew to signal to myself that I liked it...the recipe that begins with “7 cups thinly sliced small cucumbers”.

I really like the sweet and sour taste of this, and the inclusion of peppers, which is tasty and pretty.

I bought a red and a green bell pepper this morning, going to use them both and make a double recipe.

If I’m going to pull out the food processor, might as well make it worthwhile.

Doug’s recipe I feel sure came from his mother...I could see him making it for office potlucks, or for his kids, as he was a responsible Dad who planned carefully and his children had meals.

As he wrote it...

Potatoes au Gratin

5 cups boiled potatoes, diced
1 cup grated cheese
1 can cream of celery soup
1/2 cup milk
1 medium onion, minced

Put potatoes and cheese in a buttered casserole. Blend soup, milk and onion. Pour evenly over potato and cheese mixture. Bake @ 375 for 35 minutes.”

Maggie
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Old 08-02-2020, 05:16 PM   #6498
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Thanks so much Maggie! I will give them a whirl! I have some cucumbers that I need to use
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Old 08-02-2020, 11:49 PM   #6499
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Maggie, I wrote about you today on Facebook, from my campsite at Jackson, CA, explaining how I have reconciled myself to my own "different life" as a solo traveler without Penny. I am indebted to you for the encouragement you gave me in January as I prepared for my first trip following her death last August. It was very hard, but easier now with the support of our wonderful Airstream friends (who organized a memorial rally in Penny's honor at her favorite campground on the Russian River). It is kismet that you would be writing today about traveling with Doug's little treasures. I keep Penny's Airstream cap, black with pink flamingos, perched on the dash to keep me company. Take care.
Tim
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Old 08-03-2020, 05:11 AM   #6500
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Hi, Tim, and good to hear from you!

Glad to hear you are out and about, navigating your way thru your new life.

I am always grateful when others draw strength from my posts, and thank you for sharing that.

We are all more alike than we are different, is the truth.

Maggie
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