Time for a new house

Time for a new house
Time for a new house

Monday, June 15, 2015

06-10-2015 Visiting Judy at Harris Beach and something new

Current Location: Rocky Point Oregon 80 degrees F at 7pm  Nice

walking at Chetco Point (12 of 40) I didn’t take my computer with me to the beach on this trip.  Didn’t even take the MiFi for internet, and instead depended on the LTE Verizon signal on the iPad and the 3 bars of AT&T on my phone.  Sometimes I get a bit tired of all the cords and devices and packing up all that stuff.  No photo processing, no writing, nothing completed on the blog while we were playing at the beach.  In fact, some of the photos in this blog were…gasp…taken with my iPhone. Judy said to me that she prefers blogs that are at least somewhat close to “real time”, otherwise what is the point.

I suppose I could agree in some respects, but then again one of my favorite bloggers is currently writing about her Antarctic adventures that took place months ago, and I wouldn’t miss a paragraph.  To me it is every bit as exciting as if it were in real time, probably better, because she has time to flesh out the posts properly.  If I tried to blog with the iPad using Blogsy, I have a feeling it would be more like a hit and miss thing…and of course, no photos.  Can’t get RAW photos from the camera to the iPad without something to process them.

Mattie at the Beach (4 of 22) I am sure you don’t care a whit about all this anyway…you came here to see Judy.  So I am slipping back in my mind to a few days ago, and with a little help from my photos, I will recreate our moments as close to real time as I can manage.

After all the hoopla with the tire thing, we were happy to slip into our site at Harris Beach and settle in for the evening with tasty leftovers for supper.  After walking up to Judy’s site to let her know we had arrived, Mo and I enjoyed the beautiful warm evening.  with Judy at the beach (1 of 13)

In spite of my plans for Tuesday, I somehow lost 24 hours to who knows what that knocked me flat.  With the surgery thing recent enough that I am watching for infection, I was glad that I didn’t have a fever.  Whatever.  The whole thing was frustrating and boring and I hate to even talk about it, but needed to explain since Judy already gave away that we missed her fabulous planned chicken supper.  I think Mo enjoyed my down day, and did not much of anything except truly relax and read and enjoy the gorgeous sunshine, something we don’t often get at the coast.Mattie at the Beach (2 of 22) I think this is the part where Judy is thinking Mattie is a puny pipsqueak.

By Wednesday morning I was fine, although the gorgeous sunlight and warmth of the previous day had returned to June gloom and fog usually expected at the coast before noon.  with Judy at the beach (4 of 13)

We waited till afternoon and then met Judy for a beach walk and then went back to the overlook where Judy set up her scope.  We enjoyed listening to her stories about the birds of Goat/Bird Island, and she even solved a mystery for us.  Last fall when we visited, we saw something that looked like humans on the island where no humans are supposed to be.  Judy trained her scope over there and showed us the regularly spaced wildlife cameras set up to try to document a very rare bird that only comes out at night.  As Judy says, Cool Beans.

with Judy at the beach (6 of 13)I also learned there is no such thing as a “seagull”.  That bird on the post is a “western gull”. 

Supper at Judy’s site was great, although we did decide to leave Mattie at home.  Emma is nothing if not exuberant, and Mattie is about the size of a big cat, and we do remember how Emma got along with Jeremy the first time we met her.  Ha!  I am sure Emma would be fine eventually, but Mattie is still new enough to us that we aren’t exactly sure how she is with other dogs, so it was better to wait for that meeting.  Maybe next time.

with Judy at the beach (8 of 13) The New York chicken was wonderful.  I found out why Judy’s is so much better than mine, even though I followed her recipe.  All except for the poultry seasoning, which somehow didn’t make it to my copy of the marinade.  No Wonder. We had so much fun talking about Judy’s new home base in Jojoba Hills, and our tire adventures, and eating great food, that both Judy and I forgot to take any photos.  I think that is a good thing.

walking at Chetco Point (6 of 40) Thursday morning Mo and I drove to town to pick up a new tire and buy a few groceries. The day was again sunny and gorgeous, without a trace of fog and very little wind.  Amazing!  Leaving Fred Meyer, we just sort of ambled down the road and found a brand new place we had never visited before. You must realize that Mo and I have spent no less than a dozen years visiting Brookings, we even spent a good year looking for property to buy there until we decided on Grants Pass instead for MoHo winter storage. So it was crazy to me that we found not only one, but two brand new places we had never seen in all our explorations of this very small town.  judy mapOur first discovery was Mill Beach, which on a Wednesday morning was quiet and peaceful with only a few folks ambling around.  There was no leash requirement for dogs, so we walked to a deserted portion of the beach and turned Mattie loose.  Oh My!  You have never seen such a frenzy in your life.  That little dog was like a bullet train, loving the soft sand, and running in circles in such happiness and joy it make my heart just sing.

walking at Chetco Point (8 of 40) Mo had taken her to the beach the day before without me, so she knew that Mattie loved that sand.  The other thing she loved a lot was all the smelly things that she could drag around and try to eat.  Especially appetizing to her were the loose clumps of mussels wound up in dirty seaweed.  Yum.

walking at Chetco Point (14 of 40) After hiking around on the beach, we noticed there was a trail above us on the cliff, and I thought it might be the park that Russ and Donna spoke of.  Sure enough, another little drive with the iPhone led us to the parking area for Chetco Point Park just off the road by the sewage plant.  Who would have thought?!  Except I did have a memory of Russ and Donna writing about walking this trail a few years ago.Here Mattie had to be on leash, but we would have had her leashed anyway.  As good as she is, there are moments when her little dog brain gets focused on something that isn’t us and she forgets what “come” means.

walking at Chetco Point (18 of 40) The trail was easy, not to tough for ole slo-poke Sue.  Ack.  I am usually a fast walker with a long stride.  All those years in the mountains of course, but now I toddle along like an old lady, barely able to keep up with Mo, much less the dog.  At least I could walk, and that was heaven, believe me.  Especially with such gorgeous views, warm temperatures, and balmy breezes.  I spent many moments during this day just enjoying the skies and the air and the views.  It is interesting sometimes to be forced to slow down.  I see and feel more it seems.  I hope as I heal and get back to my old ways, I’ll remember to slow down and take it easy now and then.

walking at Chetco Point (20 of 40) On Thursday evening it was our turn to treat Judy to supper at our site.  Unlike Judy’s shady spot, Site A11 on the front row is wide open, with full sunlight until almost 9pm.  I had to wear sunglasses to eat and Judy made sure she was facing away from the sun so she could see.Judy and Mo at dinner (3 of 4) Mo had enough wood for wonderful fires every night and even in the full sunshine of a bright evening, she started up another great campfire.  I managed to eat one marshmallow with melted chocolate inside.  Couldn’t tempt either Judy or Mo to partake of the gooey sweet, neither care much for sweets. It isn’t about eating the marshmallow anyway, it is about roasting it to perfection.  Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I don’t.  Fun either way.

Judy and Mo at dinner (4 of 4) With plans to leave early enough on Friday morning to get to Grants Pass by noon, we were all dumped and ready to roll when Mo noticed the right rear tire was flat.  Oh no…Not again?!?  This truly WAS one of the 2013 tires. We pulled down to the overlook parking area, called Brookings Les Schwab, and waited for them to come and air up the tire so we could get to town for a tire change. 

The best part of this story is yet to come.  The previous night I had received a call from my realtor saying that she may be calling me with an offer for the Klamath house in the morning.  I told her we would be without telephone for a few hours as we traveled back home and she was a bit concerned about it.  At 9:30, while we were still at Les Schwab, she called with a very good offer!  I needed to receive 15 fax pages, sign then and fax them back.

Brookings is a small town, with not much around for office stores, (remember Judy’s story about finding a place to fax her papers!).  Then my realtor suggested that I go talk to the office people inside Les Schwab.  Sure enough, they let me receive the fax, and fax everything back, all for no charge, just a “Thanks for being a Les Schwab customer”.

Another great part to this story is that it wasn’t the tire, it was the valve stem.  That always seems to be the problem.  They fixed the tire, we put the new one on in its place, and the bill for all that work, including coming out to the park to air us up was $10.50.  Amazing how things work out.

walking at Chetco Point (38 of 40) We left for home at 11:30, a bit late, but in time to stop at an icon restaurant along Highway 199 in Gasquet called She She’s.  We have driven by here a bazillion times and never stopped, but today just seemed like a day to celebrate.  Big thick blackberry milkshake, a great burger and home made fries, shared between us, was perfect for the brilliant sunshiny hot and windy day along the Smith River toward home.

 

Sunday, June 14, 2015

06-08-2015 Blowout on the way to Brookings

Current Location: Rocky Point, Oregon Sunny and warm at 79 F

Ah yes, every RV’rs worst nightmare.  Believe it or not, it wasn’t nearly as terrible as you might expect. 

blowout on 199 (4 of 10) Finally, after a couple of months of working on projects, preparing and recuperating from surgery, and enjoying our little Mattie, Mo and I headed for the beach.  We wanted to go to Harris Beach State Park for several reasons.  We love it there.  Judy is volunteering there this summer.  It is only a 2 hour drive from the Grants Pass cottage. 

As soon as I knew when Judy was going to be working, I made a reservation.  That was two months ago, and it is a good thing I did.  Seems as though Harris Beach is fairly popular in the summertime.  I realized as I looked back that we haven’t actually visited very often during the summer months.  Both of us know that the coast is often just the opposite of inland when it comes to temperatures, and summer fogs are common.  I warned Judy about that.  When people refer to Brookings as the “Banana Belt” of the Oregon Coast, they are usually talking about those gorgeous sunny days in December that can sometimes reach the 80’s while the rest of Oregon is cold and rainy.  Mattie at the Beach (13 of 22)

Summertime, however, is a different story.  Hot inland, cold at the coast.  Chilly inland, warmer at the coast.  Oregon was in the midst of some record breaking heat last week, so we expected it to be cooler in Brookings.

The day we drove west, however, last Monday June 8, was hot and gorgeous just about everywhere.  We left early enough to arrive around 1, even though check in time is technically 2pm.  blowout on 199 (5 of 10)

The winding drive from Cave Junction to Hiochi along Scenic Highway 199 next to the Smith River is impressive.  Lots of curves, drop offs, gorgeous views of turquoise pools far below the cliffs adjacent to the highway.  The very narrow highway.highway 199

BOOM!!  on a curve, with a vertical cliff upward on the passenger side, and another vertical cliff down to the river on the driver’s side, that boom wasn’t something we were expecting.  It was LOUD.  and SCARY.  Adrenalin pumping, Mo had no trouble keeping the rig going forward and we realized that the blowout must have been an inside dual.  We slowed way down and crawled to the closest turnout, which happened to be on the other side of the road going the opposite direction.   tire 1

No cell service.  Not a hint.  Nada.  Sure does make us appreciate that we have a toad!  Mo unhooked (this surgery recuperation thing is a true pain, I can’t lift the hitch for another couple of months) and I drove off west to find a spot with a signal.

blowout on 199 (2 of 10) Calling AAA wasn’t a problem until the dispatcher (someone somewhere in a far off state with a very difficult accent) said that AAA can’t change an inside dual, and that we would have to be towed.  Where did we want to go.  I told her several times I didn’t have cell service, but it didn’t click and she kept saying she would call me to keep us updated.  Nope.

Instead I drove back a few miles to Mo and the waiting rig where we were conveniently parked in the shade in one of the prettiest spots on the entire route.  Many times as we have passed this turnout we have wanted to stop, but usually it is full so we haven’t done it.  Shade, a view, no cell service, but who cares.  It is a gorgeous afternoon and we have a reservation so we can be as late as we need to be.  Whew. 

blowout on 199 (6 of 10) Within an hour a van pulled up, with a guy who said AAA sent him out to find us since they couldn’t reach us by phone.  He couldn’t change the tire, but he also said that we could obviously not be towed because we had a flat tire!.  He said that Les Schwab in Crescent City could do the change if we were willing to pay for the repair and then get reimbursed by AAA.  Sure.  Another hour went by and the Les Schwab truck showed up, but the guy didn’t realize that our hubs had covers on them and spent a very long time trying to find a lug wrench that would fit over the caps before we realized what he was doing and told him he needed to remove the covers to get to the lugs.

blowout on 199 (8 of 10) After a lot of work, he did manage to get the tire changed, but rather than straighten out the bent mud flap before putting the tires back on, he thought he would just pull the flap down.  Another half an hour went by before he decided he needed to take the tires back off, work at getting the flap untangled, and put the tires back on.  While we were waiting, I enjoyed every little moment of fluttering maple leaves against the brilliant blue skies.  It was an incredibly beautiful day to be sitting outside. By 3:30 we were once again on our way west. blowout on 199 (9 of 10) We at first couldn’t figure out why that tire had failed, and had failed so badly.  This set of tires was a full set of six that Mo got as part of a recall by Michelin in late 2013 just before we went on our three month trip to Florida.  What both of us had forgotten, however, is that back in Florida we had a flat, and the spare was installed in the inside dual position.tire 2 We didn’t find out till the next day in Brookings, when Mo bought a new Michelin tire, that that spare was one of the original tires from the MoHo with a date of 2005.  UhOh.  I guess a tire might fail if it is ten years old. 

We managed to get to Brookings by 5, a little bit worn out, and I walked up to Judy’s spot to let her know we had made it to camp. The next few days were great, with beach time and Judy time and some new places to explore in Brookings that we had never seen. 

But more of that in the next post…

 

A test (with a photo of Judy)

Checking to see if my LiveWriter is working properly before I do a full blog post.

with Judy at the beach (1 of 13)

Monday, June 1, 2015

Rattie Mattie the Stoner Dog

Current Location: Rocky Point Oregon  53F and raining lightly.

We had a scare last night that I wouldn’t want to repeat any time soon.  Mo and I are still finalizing some of the fixes on the Painter Street house in Klamath Falls.  I am not all that great at doing stuff at the moment, so Mo has the thankless job of working day after day on trying to rebuild and repair a falling down fence in the back yard.  Well, not totally thankless.  I can’t thank her enough, not even close.  She has taken up so much of the slack on that house since my surgery last month that I’ll never be able to repay her. 


The Painter Street house is finally painted and looks great

Melody joined me yesterday to help with the inside of the house, once again doing a spit shine of the floors and bathroom so the house is completely ready for showing.  I sat around and directed mostly, while Melody mopped and swept and cleaned up all the junk that the contractors tracked inside while they were working on the outside.  They used the bathroom and kitchen and other spaces it seems.  I’ll be really glad when they are completely finished and not tracking around the house any more.

As we worked, little Mattie, the Rat Terrier (hence the Rattie Mattie name thought up by daughter Deanna) was being her wonderful self. She hung out in the house with us, and when we would go outside with her, she stayed in the yard, visiting Mo as she worked on the fence, and exploring all the corners of the small back yard. 


Mattie loved rooting around in the ivy in the back corner of the yard

She snuffed around a bit in deep ivy, but I didn’t think much of it because I didn’t see her actually eating anything.  By 4 in the afternoon I was tired, Melody had gone home, and Mo was still struggling with the fence.  Mattie and I laid down in the patio in the sun to rest.  She seemed really tired.  As I drove home around 6, she lolled in her bed in the car seat, rather than standing up to watch the passing scenery as she likes to do.

Once home, she showed no interest in her dinner and passed out in her little bed in the living room.  When I roused her to put her in my lap and her little head lolled and her eyes wouldn’t stay open, I knew something was very wrong.  Calling several vets, I received the same emergency phone number for after hours vet care, and the number kept routing me back to the same loop.  I finally located a 24 hour vet in Medford, and they said, come down now.



We loaded up Mattie and Mo drove about as fast as she has ever driven the miles over the mountain to Medford.  It took less than an hour, but that was just about the longest hour I have spent in a very long time.  Mattie kept going to sleep, and I guess I have watched enough TV to know that I had to keep her awake.  I jiggled her and shook her, opened and closed the window, did everything possible to keep her little head from lolling and her eyes from closing.

Once at the vet, the tech took one look at her and said, “Is there any chance she could get into medical marijuana?”  What???  Are you kidding me? Of course not!!  We were frantic, thinking that maybe she had found a dead mouse or something that had been poisoned.  Later a second technician came in and asked us the same question.  Really?  They were all fairly certain she had the classic symptoms of marijuana toxicity.

After a long time, thanks to an extremely busy night of emergencies, Mattie was drug tested and it came back positive for marijuana!  We scratched our heads, trying to figure it out.  I called Melody at midnight wondering if she had any idea if any of the neighbor kids smoked pot or not. Melody has been out of the house for a couple of months now, she and her family have nothing to do with pot, and she swore that she was sure the neighbors weren’t pot smokers either.

Mattie was given IV fluids to take care of her dehydration, and we were told we did the right thing to keep her awake.  Her heart rate would dip to 60 unless she was stimulated, and she could have dropped into a coma.  According to the vet, this is such a common occurrence that she sees dogs every single day in the clinic with marijuana toxicity.  Every. Single. Day.

We did a lot of head scratching, and finally realized that we have had contractors all around that house for a month now, and in addition, the fence has been open, and anyone could have strolled through the back yard.  Who knows if some kid threw an old roach down and Mattie found it.  According to the vet, pot is so cheap and easily obtained now that people don’t bother to keep the unsmoked ends and just toss them away.  It is getting to be a big problem in parks and public places where people and dogs play.  Geeze!


I didn't take photos of Mattie when everything was so scary so these are shots of our happy dog

When we rolled back into our driveway at 1:30 AM we were so grateful that the test for marijuana was positive, that Mattie would recover and sleep it off, and that we didn’t have to keep wondering what in the world she had gotten into.  She was OK.  But oh my, what a warning to those of us with dogs.  With pot becoming legal and used openly, this problem is something we need to be aware of all the time. 

Photo of Mattie on leash, although she does great off leash as well around our property


Mattie is fine today, if a bit less energetic than usual.  Her eyes are bright and she is enjoying hanging out with us wherever we are in the house.  Thank goodness.  I was amazed at how incredibly attached Mo and I have become in only a short month of sharing our lives with little Mattie.  Losing her this quickly wasn’t an option.