Tuesday, October 30, 2007

WE'RE BACK !!!!!

We're back and I can't begin to tell you how great it feels. We were both so excited to drive out of the company yard and start this trip delivering the boats to Brighton, Michigan.

I was able to attend the re certification class with Craig on Monday, and I have to say, for not being a driver, I did alright answering the questions on the tests. It was a very small class, with only two other drivers, a husband and wife team. We got along quite well, and it made the day go by faster.

We also had to wait around to get our truck back from the body shop. In fact, we volunteered to drop off another truck that needed body work so that we could get our truck back a little faster. Having retrieved our truck, we were anxious to get back to the yard and settle in for the night for some good sleep, after all this was going to be my first night sleeping in my new home. I have to tell you, I am very happy with this truck, and the room that we have inside.

Here is our new home in it's glory at a rest stop in Montana. We couldn't have asked for nicer weather and the fall colors have been beautiful. Yes, we are back, and we couldn't be happier!

Sunday, October 28, 2007


WHEW! It's been a long three months, and it has felt like we have climbed many mountains, and finally we have made it to the top to claim our stake in resuming our lives as we knew it pre injury. We found out a lot about ourselves and what we are capable of, we were blessed to have family that took us in and didn't want us to leave, and we reaffirmed that the decision we made in January 2006 to sell everything and hit the road was indeed the best thing we ever did.

We have had a very busy three days. Craig picked up two over sized boats in Roseburg, OR and was directed to go to the yard in Spokane. I rented the car, and looking very much like the Beverly Hillbillies, minus Granny on top of the car in her rocking chair, I managed to get all of our belongings inside and drive the 1000 miles to Spokane in 16 hours. All day Saturday and most of Sunday we spent organizing the truck and making it home. We are both very happy with the room we have inside and can't wait to hit the road Tuesday morning.

Sunday, we also took a drive to our lot near Newport and got our first look at it without snow on the ground. This will be the view from our living room when we get the park model home delivered. We were able to leave instructions with the park coordinator on where we want our storage building and crushed gravel on our site. We are hoping to be able to call it home by the end of next year.

We took a short walk down to the river and I was able to capture this image. We are both looking forward to living in an area where the four seasons can fully be enjoyed.

Craig will be attending his recertification class on Monday and the body work will be preformed on the truck. When that is done, we will be starting the countdown to being back on the road again, headed to Michigan to deliver the two over sized boats. We couldn't be happier about being given this opportunity to be out on the road again and living our dream.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times; it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness; it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity; it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness; it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair; we had everything before us, we had nothing before us; we were all going directly to Heaven, we were all going the other way."
-- Charles Dickens

I could very much relate to this quote from Charles Dickens after the last couple of days. With the jubilation of Craig getting cleared to go back to work, to the disappointment of calling in for an assignment and being told to wait to see how they wanted to proceed. If anything was shown to us these past three months, "waiting around" is not something we do well. With the information regarding the recovery of the truck in Oregon, we thought we would hasten the decision making by offering to have me drive Craig to the truck. It took a good 36 hours before the previous driver found a way to clean out his belongings and we were given the go ahead to drive to Oregon instead of Craig taking a bus.

We enjoyed our drive up, taking in the beauty of the changing leaves. We had a late start Tuesday afternoon, and decided to stay for the evening in Redding. Up very early......too early for how comfortable the bed was at the Hampton Inn, we proceeded on into the city of Coquille and our new home which awaited us. It was easy to find, as the previous driver had called to give us directions, and we set about doing a safety check on tires and lights. As pleased as we were to have a truck again, we were dismayed, to learn all too quickly, that the previous driver was a smoker! There is just no amount of Frebreeze to take away that smell. We had it just about taken care of in our old truck after a year of airing it out, to now have to start over with this one.

Since this truck is an International and not a Freightliner, we were happy to see there was much more room inside the truck, along with an adequate amount of windows for the upper bed which we did not have before. But with all that extra room, we noticed a big difference in storage areas, or lack of, in this truck. But given time, we will have this truck feeling like "home" in no time at all.

Once Craig had put what little he had brought with him inside the truck, he called for information on where he should go. We had thought, they wanted him ASAP back at the yard in Spokane, WA as there is some minor body work that needs to be done on the truck, plus his re-certification on his return to work from the back injury. But, we thought wrong, which of course isn't the first time that has happened. He was told to sit and wait, and there would probably be a load of boats for him to pick up in Roseburg, OR but that they didn't have the full information yet. Left with not knowing how long he was going to have to wait around, we decided that I should start the long drive back to Modesto.

This is where the jubilation we felt about his return, turned into some wet eyes and some long hugs. You would think, that having been together non stop 24/7 for the past 18 months that a little time apart would be okay. It felt like a part of each of us was ripped away when we parted ways and I drove out of the parking lot. It wasn't but an hour later that I had hatched a plan and called Craig. He had done some thinking of his own and was telling me to pack what I needed and hop on the first plane to Spokane and meet him there over the weekend. Me, always the planner said, how about I go to Selma, rent a car, pack up all of our truck stuff and drive to Spokane. If I left Friday morning, I would be there Saturday afternoon, we could put our house, er I mean truck in order, and be back in the groove of things pre 7/22/07. Well that sounded great to Craig, so now we will wait and see if the company does indeed head him into Spokane. If they don't we will just have to come up with Plan B.

I thought you would enjoy, as much as I did, this picture of Craig back in the driver's seat. We both prayed for this day and our prayers were answered. He couldn't have been happier, and I couldn't of been more proud of him for toughing it out and getting well enough to return to work. If all goes as we hope, by next week, I'll be reporting from the front lines once again. Yes, these are indeed the best of times.

Monday, October 22, 2007


I'm not sure we are any closer to getting back in the truck. We waited all day Thursday and Friday without any word. So the weekend we spent in anticipation of what we might hear today. Called first thing in the morning, only to confirm we are still on the boat fleet, but no closer to finding out when we get a truck or where. There is talk of recovering a truck in Oregon, whose driver was injured off duty while on home time. We did accomplish getting Craig's DOT physical completed and the paperwork sent in. Until then, we are anxiously awaiting to hear the details of our return. Stay tuned!

Thursday, October 18, 2007


Yes, that's right. We have been given the thumbs up, an A -O- K, the seal of approval, the blessing of the doctor for Craig to return to work. Y I P E E ! We couldn't be more excited to be given this chance to return to our adventurous lifestyle of being back on the road. We have come a long way from that fateful day on July 22 when we thought just a rest through the night would cure what ailed him, to the marathon phone calls and trying desperately to seek anyone who might be able to help us while in Texas, let alone, get us out of Texas and back home.

We don't know the particulars on how and where we will pick up our new truck and return to the highways and biways. Craig took the first step by taking a drug screening test this morning. We hope to hear something Friday, or at the latest, Monday on the details of our return. Until then, I can not thank all of you enough for the support we have received over the past three months and what it has meant to us. Thank you all and I look forward to taking pictures and commenting on our travels from my ever changing picture window very soon!

Saturday, October 13, 2007


With a need for another quick get away, we headed a little over an hour away from Selma to Kings Canyon National Park. It was an overcast day with low lying clouds, which we seemed to drive straight into as we reached the 6000 feet elevation of the park. The clouds kept us company as we entered the park, and took off on foot to see the majestic giant sequoia trees.

Walking along the trail of the self guided tour, the mist of the clouds around us, and temperatures that bring a rosy color to your cheeks, you couldn't help but marvel at the splendor of these trees. The grandest of them all is the General Grant Tree. This tree is the third largest living tree and has a base which is wider than a three lane freeway, and is as tall as a 27 story building.

The General Grant tree was proclaimed "The Nation's Christmas Tree" by President Calvin Coolidge and in 1956, President Eisenhower designated the Grant Tree as a living National Shrine in memory of Americans who have died in war. Try as I might, the pictures I took do not give justice to the size of the massive trees. To think that their root structure is no deeper than five feet beneath the surface makes you stop and wonder how they survive for many centuries. Toppling is the primary way these stately trees meet their end, uprooting from a heavy snow load or strong wind.

As with our own life, over long periods of time, nature, climate, and the world around us adjusts, sometime slowly, sometimes too quickly, but it adapts and has an ingrained will to survive. We find specific conditions that suit us, whether it be hot or cold, wet or dry, a place we can tolerate. Except for the hot, I find that Craig and I can live with a wide range of conditions, and that is why I know we enjoy life on the road so much. An ever changing landscape of nature and humanity, some we love, some we don't, but always with our love of adventure prodding us towards that next town down the road of this great land......America.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007


One never knows what life will throw at you, and I'm not sure I would want to know. I have come to enjoy the occasional curve ball that has been thrown at us every once in awhile, it keeps you on your toes and constantly thinking. Which of course is what I do on my walks.....think. I've been seeing some odd things on my walk in the mornings such as the item pictured here. A die, its pair no where to be seen, just this one, all alone, towards the middle of the street. And then the thinking commences. How did this die end up where it was, and whose roll of the dice was it? Was the four a good number or bad? Never, ever getting answers to these questions in my head, I continued on my way, but not without trying to correlate this lonely die, in the middle of the road, with where Craig and I are with his medical condition.

The doctors have all said the epidural may not take care of his pain, that he may need a second or third procedure. We have seen improvement, but there is still pain in his left hip and calf. We put his recovery at about 85% right now, but is that good enough to be cleared to go back to work, or will he need more treatments? We are so very hopeful that he can return to work as quickly as he can, but we also are wise enough to know not to rush back before he is healed as completely as he can be. So with these questions lingering, we decided to take a day off and enjoy ourselves.

I had a dental appointment in Folsom, east of Sacramento on Monday, so we chose to stay overnight on the Delta King in Old Sacramento. We have stayed there several times before. It is an old paddle boat that was converted into a Hotel on the river in Old Town. There are several nice restaurants along the river to sit and relax and partake in some good food and good wine, which is exactly what we did.

It was a nice relaxing evening, and we both enjoyed the time away. We also stopped by Craig's previous place of employment so that he could catch up with some of his good friends from Nor-Cal Beverage. Today finds us back in Modesto and pondering again about our future. But I know, no matter what the roll of the dice may give us, we'll make the best of it, as we always have, together.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007


On my walk the other morning, I spotted it. It lay near the gutter, just at the edge of the roadway. How it got there I didn't know, but I knew there had to be someone looking for it. I think a lot of people look for it, but it remains elusive during their lifetime, and here I had found it. The missing piece of the puzzle. But to whose puzzle did it belong? I continued on my way not giving it much more thought until this morning.

Craig has started joining me on my morning walks and this morning, while on our way to a local coffee shack, we both spotted it. What were the odds that on a different route we would see yet another piece of a puzzle lying on the ground? Was it some type of omen, a sign of something? Back almost 7 years ago, when we first met, we had talked that it felt like we had found the missing piece of the puzzle. That together we felt complete. Those words ring as true today as they did back then. I think what that piece of puzzle represented to me was that our puzzle, our life, was going to be complete again.

Since the epidural, we have seen daily improvement, so much so, that Craig is back to his old self again. Antsy, impatient, and with total dislike to sit around and do nothing. Yes, my husband is back, and I couldn't be happier. The problem is going to be keeping him busy until the appointment with his primary doctor on the 17th to see if he can be released to go back to work. When he does, we are back out on the road again, and our puzzle is will once again be complete.


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