April and Time to Get on the ROAD!

huge lilac bush by the old shed I know that life is either very good or very bad when I don’t have time to write.  This time it is very good.  Thank goodness.  It was the same way when I kept all those handwritten journals so many years.  When things were good there are very few entries, when things were bad there are pages and pages of them.  If my daughters ever find my journals after my death they would think I lived a horrible life if they didn’t know otherwise. That seems kind of sad to me in a way, but I suppose journaling is a form of self therapy and when things are good who needs therapy!
oaks leafing out at the cottage and potatoes in the dirt p8ileMore than a month has passed since I last wrote in this particular journal, but the one that is now getting filled up is the Google Calendar, with what the weather was doing, where we were, and all those dang dentist and doctor appointments.  I guess that is what life can be reduced to sometimes. I love going back to the blog to remember what we were doing, however, it is a lot more fun that looking appointments on a calendar, and I don’t want April to be a giant black hole. 
The calendar looks really good today, with reminders of what to do next.  “Pack for trip”  “Send in last timesheet” and other such exciting little things.  I have worked in town all week, so Mo has been taking care of home stuff, including setting up the complex sprinkler system and washing the cars.  We finally have spring weather here in Rocky Point and the grass might need some watering while we are off wandering around the desert. Friends are back to house sit, but they don’t have a clue how to work with Mo’s intricate battery timed watering system, so by the time we leave it will be all automated and running and hopefully no hard freeze will mess it all up again.  You never know in this part of the world.
Mo is mowingEaster was so dang early this year that I barely had time to put up decorations before it was over, so I decided that April was Easter month and the decorations only came down a couple of days ago.  Now all is quiet until Halloween and the only yard decorations will be whatever happens to be blooming. We had a simple Easter dinner and egg hunt here in Rocky Point, and then Mo and I spent a lot of time over in Grants Pass taking care of cottage chores.  April at the cottage-004 I even managed a bit of quilting here and there in between trips and chores and work and appointments.
I think I raked a total of twelve full days to get all those oak leaves up and burned.  We tore out the old wall between the kitchen and the bathroom and Mo got a new one framed and drywalled, and it is ready for taping.  The roof no longer leaks, the kitchen floor is now dry with no hidden wet surprises appearing, and the little cottage feels nice and cozy.  We like staying there, especially this time of year.  More than once this past month we left spitting snow and icy roads to drive over to Grants Pass and green grass and blooming spring flowers.  Ahhhhh.  Spring is one of my favorite times, so it is a kick to have spring extended this way as we drive back and forth between home and the cottage.  Daffodils over there have been gone for three weeks and they are just now coming into full bloom here at home.
This last week was our annual progress office review and I delighted in the role as a worker bee rather than the supervisor.  No stress!  I love that part of working as a retiree part time.  I am no longer in charge.  Another ahhh.
After a couple of trips to the cottage and a lot of work around home, we are both ready to make use of that great motorhome that is sitting over there waiting for us.  This time the decision is to head back down 395, the back side of the Sierras, the eastern slope of California.  Our destination: Death Valley.  We haven’t been there since 2004, although several times in our travels we have passed by it on both sides.  This time we will just explore the valley.  Our route home up 395 will bring the MoHo back to Rocky Point and her home berth, ready and waiting for summer camping trips.  No more snow to worry about.
two burn piles down and the field is mowed On the way south we have a couple of fun stops as we amble toward 395.  It is that blog friend thing that I treasure, we will visit old and new blog friends in Placerville and Nevada City.  More to come on that after I get photos and permission to post them!  Then it is over the mountain and into the desert.  Abby will be with us, but this time I decided to let our 17 year old kitty Jeremy spend the time at his cozy little home at the vet’s.  I’ll miss him, but desert heat can be daunting, and if we take Abby in the Tracker with air conditioning, it is worrisome to leave Jeremy in the rig, especially if we don’t get a spot with hookups.  Our route can have weather running the gamut of freezing nights to days over triple digits.
Jeremy loves being outside at the cottage Furnace Creek now has 21 sites with full hookups, but we can’t reserve any because the season officially ends on May 1, our arrival date, so we are taking our chances.  Worst case scenario can be that we will have to return to higher ground and lower temps.  Either way, it will be great.  We are planning a loose trip with options open to whatever fits and whatever works.  Just a trip with some time in the desert!  It is one of the reasons Mo and I like where we live.  We have ocean coast within a short drive, and desert just the other side of Klamath on the Nevada side.  The other delight for me will be heading east from the I-5 over the Sierras and not having to slog our way south through the San Joaquin Valley as we do every winter on our way to Desert Hot Springs.  ahhhh. 
On another note…reading blogs seems to be slipping away from my list of priorities.  Of course there are still a few that really matter to me a lot, and so I wade through the long list to check on those few, how many of you do that as well?  There are some writers that make me laugh out loud and I look forward to that.  Others who have photos that take my breath away and I am always waiting to see what is next.  Others I have come to care about, for whatever reason, and I want to know they are ok, or where they are, or what is happening for them.
I am not going to list them here, or link to them because somehow that just doesn’t seem fair.  Each writer spends time and energy putting themselves out here for whatever reason and that should be respected, I think. But as I do this, and read so many blogs of “stuff”, I totally recognize that my blog is also full of “stuff” that is only relevant to me, and trying to write for anyone but myself is a waste of time.  Someone is looking at my header on google reader or feedly and cruising right by whatever I have to say. 
dvandvegas 069 Some have the skill to write daily in ways that I don’t want to miss, but whether I have the skill or not, I certainly don’t have the desire.  I have no need or desire to put up ads, so what do I need to worry about readership for anyway?  It is so easy to get sucked in by the stats, who is reading, where are they from, what do they look at.  I HATE that, I hate it that I still look at the stats and that I think, “Gee, I should post something so people keep reading”.  Dumb, just dumb! I should post something just because I want to know what I did in April of 2013.  We all talk about this now and then, I know.  I see little blurbs of people saying they aren’t reading as much, and more blurbs of apologies about why they haven’t written.  I catch myself thinking that way as well, that I should say why I haven’t written, but nobody really cares, do they??  If they are friends, they know why I haven’t written, and we have probably been emailing all along.  If they aren’t friends, they don’t care why I haven’t written!
Ah well, enough of my little rant here….it is time to pack! Here is a little photo of us back in 2004, the first time we visited Death Valley together, pre-blog of course.

Author: kyotesue

Soil scientist/mapper working for 35 years in the wild lands of the West. I am now retired, enjoying my freedom to travel, to hike without a shovel and a pack, to knit and quilt and play, to play with photography and write stories about all of it.

19 thoughts on “April and Time to Get on the ROAD!”

  1. Oh – I so agree about blogging and reading blogs. Some days I want to read everyone and others I skim and check in occasionally. I certainly don't write a daily blog because I have no writing talent. I post so I can look back and remember since my memory certainly isn't working that good anymore.

    I love Death Valley – one of my very favorite places. But I do hope you get a hook up site. May is going to be really “warm” there. We did a cancer walk in May one year and I so admire those who did the whole 24 miles. Have a wonderful time, you guys. And please post some pictures of DV for me to enjoy.


  2. Just yesterday I was thinking that I have not seen a blog from you. Blogging can sometimes take up a lot of time. I have decided that my blog is my journal. I am having the blog printed into a book each year, for my daughter (and future granddaughter). I am not on the road everyday and don't always have something interesting to post. I hope to go to Death Valley some winter, I even considered workamping there.


  3. Wonderful, thoughtful blog post. I, too, read some and let others slide, only to go back and catch up as there's time.

    My main reason for blogging is to record events, emotions and photography as everything happens so we don't forget. I've only been blogging for a couple of years, but Bob and I go back and re-read them often to re-live where we were, and what we were feeling and doing.

    Spring is my favorite season as well. So much new growth and beautiful flowers.


  4. I hear you on the blog reading … and the writing. I want to do both … and regularly, but it is simply not possible. I am struggling with the way I would like to write my blog posts … as a journal … and the lack of time to do it right. When I find myself wishing for rain just so I can stay home and write, I know there is something wrong. So, I'm writing when I can, going out and enjoying life in the meantime. I can only hope that “friends” understand and will be reading when I have a new post up.


  5. I learn so much from reading others blogs and hope they do from mine as well. And they have become friends I've haven't yet met so I miss hearing from them on my blog and reading theirs if they go away. And that includes you so I am very glad to hear from you again.

    I'm sure the campsite will be there for you. Hope you'll show me what I want to make sure to see. I've never been to Death Valley and wonder when is the “right” time to go there if I want to enjoy the weather as well as the scenery.


  6. Yes those are lilacs in bloom over at the cottage. Our lilacs here in Rocky Point have yet to leaf out, but maybe they will have some green on them by the time we get back


  7. 395 South, one of our favorite routes! Lots of things to enjoy there and Death Valley should be a fun place to putter around in…we enjoyed it when we were there several years ago, but it was so windy, we only spent one night. Hope you have an enjoyable trip. Say “Hi” to Bishop, CA for us when you go through there, and do stop at the Law's Railroad Museum there is you have time. Brown's Millpond Campground is a nice out of the way place to spend the night, if you're there when you need that. Enjoy!


  8. Spring is a very busy time indeed. I am in the mountains and so happy.
    You both sure have been busy and yes it is time to travel and enjoy. Looking forward to reading of your advetures. I am not reading as many as before either.
    Safe travels always.


  9. It's nice to know that I am not the only one who has let the blog writing/reading and commenting move down the priority list..my desire to read and comment on all the blogs has gone by the wayside. I do still peruse the list and check on my favorites..some days there just isn't enough time to do it all!..and then of course, if I get behind there is no hope to catch up..


  10. Hi Sue.

    First and foremost I write for myself. I have no idea why I chose to do this in a public place but I do enjoy the interaction from readers, not that there is a great deal. I guess I began with a weight loss support group and that's still important to me although it has evolved. Finding the RV travel interest has been inspiring.

    We had a wonderful time in Hawaii and I can totally recommend it as a destination. I did find the heat at sea level a bit much and I could never revel in temperatures above 80'F for any length of time even when it's dry heat. I think I would only like desert places in the shoulder seasons when they warm up from the winter and before the sun gets to high.

    I'm glad you have another adventure planned and look forward to reading all about it.



  11. I'm with you on the blogs, Sue, both reading and writing. Some days I have more time to read but sometimes I have found myself spending HOURS reading blogs and forgetting to live life – NOT good! And so I skim and read when I can and write when I want to record something of my life for myself and my posterity. Do have a fun trip down 395, as Russ said, one of our favorite places in the world. Schat's Bakkery (yes they spell it that way!) in Bishop is an evil place that you want to stay well away from hahahahaha!!!


  12. Yeahhhhhh…395…my absolute fav drive! Can't wait to see what treasures you unravel there. We've done the trip twice and love ALL of it (Mono Lake, June Lake, Bishop…you name it), but we are always looking for new spots and will do it again for sure. BLM campgrounds are GREAT all along the 395, but the NFS sites are nice too. Boondocking around there as well.


  13. Yeahhhhhh…395…my absolute fav drive! Can't wait to see what treasures you unravel there. We've done the trip twice and love ALL of it (Mono Lake, June Lake, Bishop…you name it), but we are always looking for new spots and will do it again for sure. BLM campgrounds are GREAT all along the 395, but the NFS sites are nice too. Boondocking around there as well.Nina


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