Saturday, August 31, 2019

A stitch in time.......

8:27 am - Saturday - August 31st - Ramona, CA - 69° F, 63% humidity, wind - CALM......clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 97° F.

It seems that for most of August I have been recovering from various surgical procedures, and it is getting a little tiresome, even though I understand the necessity of it all.  Friday I had an appointment at Dr. Jou's office to have the stitches in my side removed.  After almost two weeks of applying, and removing dressings from the wound the skin around the area was quite irritated, and to add to the discomfort the stitches were itching to beat the band.  My appointment was for 1 pm, which worked well for me as I am off work at 11:30 on Friday's.  I did the usual stuff Friday, and also spent some time blowing leaves off Maple and Oak Streets respectively.  

After a quick shower I was off in a cloud of dust for Poway to keep my doctor appointment.  TLE was still working, so I drove down solo.  I arrived a little after 12:30 pm, and was shown in to Room 3 right at 1 pm.  Within 5 minutes the stitches were a thing of my past, and I was on my way home.  Within minutes the area stopped itching, and I was feeling a lot of relief.  I stopped off at the local Starbucks to treat myself to, wait for it, a mocha frappuccino.  It has been a long time since my last one, and I enjoyed the grande all the way home where I arrived just after 2 pm.

A little after 4 pm TLE and I headed up the hill to Wynola, CA for dinner at Jeremy's On the Hill, a fine dining restaurant with 4.5 stars on Yelp on 873 reviews.  Jeremy's is a 'farm to table' restaurant, and the menu changes on a regular basis.  On this day TLE chose their Rack of Lamb, and I their Center Cut Pork Chop.  For an appetizer we ordered their famous Crispy Brussels Sprouts-Ponzu.....yum!  I am not a Brussels Sprouts fan, but I am always open to something new, and unexpected.  We paired our dinner with a locally made 2017 Malbec from the Grant James Vineyards here in the Ramona Valley.....






.......we arrived just before 4:30 pm, and enjoyed a slow paced dinner lasting until well after 6 pm.  When we arrived there was only one other table occupied, however, by the time we left the restaurant was filling up quickly, and the alfresco dinning area was almost full.  They have live music outside on the weekends.

We always manage to find a good restaurant at which to celebrate our anniversary no matter where we find ourselves each year, and I am glad we chose Jeremy's On the Hill for this year's celebration.

Thanks for stopping by!

P.S. - My blog post about Friday will be published around 3 pm Pacific Time for your reading pleasure.

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48 years of love, children and commitment.........

7:40 am - Saturday - August 31st - Ramona, CA - 61° F, 81% humidity, wind - CALM.....clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 97° F.  So, we have arrived at the last day of August, 2019, and when we go back to work on Monday it will be September, and just 20 days until the official beginning of Fall.

After 11 days of work the electricians finished with the remodel of sites 43-51.  All of the old pedestals and plumbing were removed and replaced with all new, including new poured concrete bases......




....the old stuff was over 30 years old, and we had a lot of issues with reliability in that section, but now it is all new and there should be no more problems.  All that remains is for us to install new water spigots, new sewer caps, re-level the sites, and spread new gravel before they can once again be occupied.

Since we arrived 4 months ago it has been the goal of the park owner to get rid of the old 'park model' in the storage area.  One of our employees said she would have it moved, and the owner said she if she did, she could have it for free.  You will recall that I wrote about this back in early May.  Well, Thursday morning moving day finally arrived.  You will note in the picture I took in May (below) that there is no tongue, or axles on the park model.  The tongue, which was detached when it was moved into the storage area years ago, was still there, but had to be reattached.  The axles had to be purchased from a local dismantler, and installed......



.....early this month the used axles were delivered, and installed, however, one of them was locked up and would not allow the wheels to turn, so it had to be repaired.  Well, it was finally repaired a few days ago, and a mover was hired.  He arrived about 11 am, and thus began the long awaited move......


 Getting ready to move the 'park model'

.....I took a short video of this momentous occasion for your viewing pleasure.....


.....and now the cleanup of the space can commence, after which we will have an additional four, our five spaces to rent out for RV storage!

Gone, at last

Of course, the rest of my day was taken with the usual pool cleaning tasks, mini golf leaf abatement, and horseshoe pit maintenance.  By the time I clocked out from work at 2 pm it was very hot, and I was happy to escape to the A/C cooled interior of the Newell.

Thursday was also the end of the first 48 hours after my MOHS surgery on my right ear, and I was able to have TLE change the dressing for the first time.  It is still extremely sore, but not as bad as it would have been if it were not for the fact that about 1/2 of my right ear is still numb following the parotid cyst removal (right cheek) back in February.  Most of the numb area is were the basil cell carcinoma was. 

Thursday, August 29th, was also the 48th acknowledgement of our wedding day back in 1971.  Normally we head out for dinner at a fine dinning establishment on our anniversary, but I was still getting over the effects of the ear surgery, so we put it off until Friday evening.  Nevertheless, TLE pulled out a wonderful filet mignon for me to grill on the Sea-B-Que.  I grilled it for about 8 minutes, and pronounced it a perfect medium rare.  We actually set up our dining table, and had a real, formal, adult sit down dinner.  That we have been together 48 years is a number which is hard for me to comprehend.  It does not seem that long, but the chronology is undeniable......we have a soon to be 47 year old son as mute testimony to the beginning of that union so many years ago.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Thursday, August 29, 2019

Lidocaine express.....

7:04 am - Thursday - August 29th - Ramona, CA - 84° F, 49% humidity, wind 11 mph out of the west by northwest.....just past sunset on our 48th anniversary.


After my surgery on Tuesday I predetermined not to work more than 5 hours on Wednesday.  I felt fine, but I did not want to overextend myself.  I awoke feeling very, very tired, even after 9 hours of sleep.  The only thing I can attribute that to were the numerous lidocaine shots I received in my ear Tuesday.  It takes my body about 24 hours to work that out of my system, and at 7 am on the day after my surgery which ended around 3 pm the afternoon prior I still felt the effects of all that lidocaine.

As I always do on Wednesdays, I swept and vacuumed the pool, then cleaned the skimmers....wow, what a lot of stuff I found, including a slice of cantaloupe (see middle of net)!  

By the time I finished with the horseshoe pits, and mini golf it was almost 11:30 am, and time to end my work day.  I dropped off my 2-way radio at the office and headed for the Newell.  I actually felt better at the end of my 5 hour shift than I did at the beginning, but I took a nap anyway.  By the time TLE got home I felt much better.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Monday, and Tuesday

5:23 am - Thursday - August 29th - Ramona, CA - 60° F, 83% humidity, wind - 3 mph out of the west by northwest.....still dark.....we have a forecast high today of 91° F.  I am way behind in my blogging.....time to catch it up!  Today is our 48th wedding anniversary.

Work Monday was totally routine except I took time to wash down the pool deck.  Washing down the pool deck is something I normally do on Tuesdays and Thursdays, but since I would not be at work Tuesday (day of my MOHS surgery) I did it Monday.  By the time I was done it was almost 11 am, and by the time I finished with the horseshoe pits, and the mini golf area it was after 12 pm, and I had not had lunch.

Once lunch was done I only had 1.5 hours of work left, and frankly, 3 days later I cannot even remember what I did for those last 90 minutes.  At any rate when 2 pm came around I headed for home to get out of the heat, and take a good nap, as I knew Tuesday had the potential of being a long day.  I returned to the office by 4 pm to give TLE a ride home, and that was basically it for Monday.

I was up by 6 am on Tuesday as I needed to be at Dr. Rubin's office by 8:30 am for my 8:45 am appointment.  The drive down to Poway was completely uneventful with us arriving at the doctor's office just before 8:30 am.  I was called into the operating room about 5 minutes later, and by 8:45 am Dr. Rubin was taking off the first slice of my right ear (very top), and I was back in the waiting room awaiting the results by 9 am.  It takes anywhere from 45 minutes to an hour to analyse each 'slice', and by 9:45 am I was called back into the surgery.  The lab results still showed basis cell carcinoma throughout the whole slice, so the doctor removed another slice of my ear for testing, and I was once again relegated to the waiting room to await the latest results.  It wasn't until after 11 am that I was once again summoned to the surgery where I was advised that there was just a small area left where there was still basil cell carcinoma, and, hopefully, this would be the last slice.

In the waiting room after the first 'slice.....

By the time I was back in the waiting room it was after 11:30 am so TLE and I decided to head to a local Carl's Jr. about 1 mile away for a quick bite to eat to kind of change up the routine a little.  We were back around 12:20 pm, and by 12:30 pm my name was called one more time, but this time I was directed to the doctor's office.....change is good, right?  I was told by the attending nurse that all the 'margins' were clear, and the basil cell was all gone....whew!  She advised that it would be about 30 minutes before Dr. Rubin could begin the 'repair' of what was left of my right ear.  Finally about 1 pm I was summoned to the surgery again, and Dr. Rubin began to close the wound.  

The whole point of MOHS surgery is to only remove what is absolutely necessary to be rid of the basil cells.  In my case the doctor had to invade the cartilage at the top of my ear, and after repair it looks like a toy shark took a bite out of my ear.  While I was sad to see the condition of my ear, I am grateful all the cancer is now gone.  In about 4 months I will probably return for reconstructive surgery in which they will be able to fill in the 'shark bite' and mostly restore my ear.  I say 'probably' as I am pretty sure I will have the reconstructive surgery done, but it may be that over time that I will get used to what my ear looks like now, and decide to leave it as it is.  Right now I am inclined to have the reconstruction.

We were in the car about 3 pm headed over to COSTCO to pick up a few prescriptions, including a pain killer, and an antibiotic.  My Brillinta prescription, which I had called in last Friday was ready, but we had to wait until almost 4 pm for the other two prescriptions.  By the time we got home it was 5:05 pm.....a very long day.  Needless to say I was tired, and just sat down in my recliner to rest.  I don't think I moved again until after 7 pm.

I'm very glad we got the pain prescription as the ear began to hurt in earnest about 7 pm.  I would say on a scale of 1-10 my pain was around 4, but by the time I went to bed it was down around a 1, and that is where it remained throughout the night.

Thank you for your patience, and as always, for stopping by!

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Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Home again, home again....jiggity jig.....

6:14 am - Tuesday - August 27th - Ramona, CA - 63° F, 65% humidity, wind - CALM.....still dark...what a change from a month ago.  I'm a little behind, so this post will relate Sunday's events to you, and the one following will be about Monday.  We leave in about an hour for my MOHS surgery on my right ear down in Poway.

We slept in Sunday until after 7 am.  With Tim and Laila's new, vinyl, dual glazed, sound proof windows you cannot hear any sound from outside the house.  It is soooo quiet!  I typed my daily blog post using my ZAGG blue tooth keyboard......



I just open it up, turn on my phone blue tooth, and then sit the phone on the little ledge on the back of the keyboard and type.  This keyboard allows me to travel light, and leave my laptop at home.

After finishing my blog post Laila served up this wonderful bagel, locks and capers breakfast.....



.....even though we knew we would be leaving that morning to drive home, it was the furthest thought from our minds.  We just sat and talked, as we always do, about everything under the sun as if we were going to be there all day.

I needed to pick up a prescription at the COSTCO in San Marcos on the way home so we did need to get going eventually, and that was about 10:45 am as it happened.  We had a lovely time seeing all of our kids, and being able to spend so much time with Crosby, Laila and Tim.  They are wonderful hosts.

We arrived at the COSTCO in San Marcos a little after 12 pm (very light Sunday traffic!) to find that the pharmacy is CLOSED on Sundays.....wait, what?  I guess we have never been there on Sunday to pick up a prescription.....doh!  Oh well, we'll be back down the hill on Tuesday for my MOHS surgery....we'll get the prescription then.

We did pick up a few things at COSTCO, and were still able to get home a little after 1 pm....nothing like very light traffic to speed your drive home.  I began watching a mini series on Amazon Prime TV Saturday night, and had watched the first 3 of 7 episodes of 'The Widow', an Amazon Prime Original.  It was very well done, with many twists and turns.  I would highly recommend it.  At any rate, we watched the final 4 episodes Sunday afternoon, evening and were in bed by 9 pm for it is back to work on Monday!

Thanks for stopping by!


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Sunday, August 25, 2019

Ontario living.....

8:11 am - Sunday - August 25th - Ontario, CA - 73 degrees, 79% humidity, wind - CALM......clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 95 degrees.

We sat around talking, and drinking coffee Saturday morning until after 9 am.  We then drove into Riverside, CA to have breakfast at Simple Simon's (breakfast/lunch place).  We began having breakfast there almost 8 years ago when we began our full time adventure, and were living in our Newell at Rancho Jurupa Regional Park, which is just a couple of miles from Simple Simon's.  They are always packed on the weekends, but we always find a table outside next to the Mission Inn......



......we arrived around 9:30 am, and didn't leave until after 11.  It was beginning to get warm by that time, or should I say more humid?  From there TLE and left Tim and Laila, and headed for Claremont so TLE could get her hair styled by Amanda at Maxx Salon.  Almost everytime we are in town she visits Amanda to get her hair tuned up.


 It was after 1 pm by the time we arrived back at Tim and Laila's.  The birthday for Jameson, our great grandson, was scheduled for 5 pm, so we had four hours to rest.  I took a sweet 2 hour nap.  We were off to the party just before 5 pm, and were there until almost 8 pm......


.....all of our kids where there with their kids, as well as my youngest brother Phillip, and is wife Jeannie.  We had a wonderful time catching up with everyone, and before we knew it it was time to sing happy birthday to the birthday boy...


.......he is one year old, but I do no think he totally understands what this celebration was all about, right?

It was a great day with family and friends.  We were home by 8:30 pm bidding good night to Tim and Laila.

Thanks for stopping by!


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Saturday, August 24, 2019

'Back in the saddle again.....'

7:17 am - Saturday - August 24th - Ontario, CA - 67 degrees, 79% humidity wind - CALM.....clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 94 degrees.



Made me feel good to be back at the pool Friday morning.  As I prepared to sweep the pool for the first time in a week I wondered how my wound would tolerate all of that arm action, but there was nothing about which to be worried.....it felt fine as long as I took my time.  By 9 am the pool was finished......while I was cleaning the skimmers I found a LIVE tarantula......



......kind of creepy, but very cool at the same time!

When I was done with the pool I went up to open the Red Barn, and attended to the horseshoe pits, then down to the mini golf to blow a week's worth of eucalyptus leaves off the holes. 

After that Rich sent me up to Cabin 98 to fix the bannister railing on the upper bunk bed.  It had never been secured, so I cut a piece of 2" X 2" wood to attach the bannister to the frame of the bed at the far end......



.....at some point I will get it stained so it matches the rest of the wood....I love doing stuff like this!

I was off work by 12 pm, went home to shower and pack for our weekend trip up to Ontario, CA to attend the birthday party of our great grandson, Jameson Saturday afternoon.  This time we planned to stay with Tim, his wife Laila and their 7 month old son, Crosby.  TLE was home a little after 1:30 pm, and we were on the road north by 2 pm.

Friday afternoon traffic in SoCal is universally terrible and this Friday was no exception.  It took us 2.5 hours to reach our son's home.  Getting to spend time with our newest grandchild, Crosby, has been something to which I have been looking forward for several weeks.....


.....he has so much energy!


Crosby time

......he is growing so fast!  Tim works for Warmington Homes, a large California developer, as a construction superintendent, and is working out in Van Nuys on a 63 home development, so he gets home on Fridays between 5:30 pm and 6 pm.....it's a long drive through some of the worst traffic SoCal has to offer.

Whenever we visit Tim and Laila it always feels like home to me.  They have a wonderful guest bedroom, a wonderful backyard, and we always feel like we are at a resort.






........we sat by the outdoor firepit after a delicious tri-tip dinner talking until after 8:30 pm before heading in for the evening.  With a young baby Tim and Laila go to bed early, just as we did many years ago.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Friday, August 23, 2019

Binging........

1:14 pm - Friday - August 23rd - Ramona, CA - 84° F, 37% humidity, wind 8 mph out of the west by northwest......clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 85° F.

Thursday was my last day off work before I return to same on Friday.  I spent it much like the other three days, relaxing in my recliner.  Since Monday I have binged watched 2 different Netflix series, each of which has three seasons, and two seasons (respectfully) 'in the can' for your viewing pleasure.  The first series is called 'Glitch', which is about 6 people who return from the dead in a small town called Yoorana.  IMDB says there are three seasons, however, only two are currently available on Netflix, and there are only 6 episodes per season.  It is a very intriguing series, and I highly recommend it.  

The second series I binged watched is 'The Punisher' which has two seasons so far with 13 episodes each.  It took me a couple of days to watch all 26 episodes, which at an average of 55 minutes per episodes is a lot of relaxing in the recliner!  It's about an ex-marine, Frank Castle, whose family is murdered.  He becomes a vigilante and goes after all of those who were responsible.  I have seen the movie, which came out in 2004, and was kind of a 'B' movie, but the Netflix series is pretty well done, and keeps you on the edge of your proverbial seat.  It is quite 'dark', and very violent, so beware.

I feel good, and my side is healing quickly,  I wont' get the stitches out until August 30th. I now it's healing because it itches like crazy.  I don't really have anything more to share about Thursday, so I will bid you adieu until tomorrow.

Thanks for stopping by!

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Thursday, August 22, 2019

Day 3 of recovery

7:56 am - Thursday - August 22nd - Ramona, CA - 59° F, 93% humidity, wind 6 mph out of the west.....clear, blue, sunny skies today with a forecast high of 91° F.

Third day  of recovery.......the same as the first two.....lots of sitting around....one of my favorite activities....NOT!  But what are you going to do, right?  It is what it is, and sitting around is the prescription for healing quickly.  Intellectually I realize there is no way with this 3 inch incision on my side that I could do any of the work things I normally do without a lot of pain, and possibly pulling too hard on the stitches.  Even though I understand why I must be sit around, I still feel kind of useless......kind of like a slacker.  At any rate I've just one more day of prescribed rest after Wednesday and I should then be able to return to work on Friday for one day, then I'll have two more days off work before Monday, and the beginning of the Labor Day week.....the last major holiday of the summer season.

The wound is actually healing very nicely, and I think less and less about it with each passing hour.  Thank goodness I have always been a quick healer.  TLE changes my dressing once each day and says it looks good.  I can see it, but it's a tough angle for me to get a really good view.  I'm down to a much smaller bandage than the first day, but as you can imagine, it can only get so small with a 3 inch incision to cover.

On the Newell front.....having to sit around all day, mostly inside the Newell, I have really come to appreciate how well insulated this coach is.  When we get up in the morning we close all the windows and leave the Fantastic Fan vent fan on low.  It remains very comfortable until after 2 pm every day, which is when I usually turn on the rear A/C.  I'm sure if we had dual glazed windows it would be even better.  It only gets really hot around 4:30 pm when the sun is shinning directly into the front windows, but that only lasts for about an hour and then the is behind the trees across the street.

In just a few days we will have been here 4 months (August 25th).  The good news is it feels like much less time.....there is no bad news....it's all good.  Sorry for such brief posts the last few days, but when you sit around all day there is not much about which to write, right?

Thanks for stopping by!


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Wednesday, August 21, 2019

'Two lovers......'

7:33 am - Wednesday - August 21st - Ramona, CA - 54° F, 80% humidity, wind - CALM.....clear, blue, sunny skies today with a forecast high of 95° F.

Unlike my experience with my biopsy sites oozing for a few days I have had no oozing from the stitches along my 3" long incision, just pain, and even that has diminished quickly.  I went outside briefly Tuesday morning, but spent most the day relaxing in my recliner.  A nurse from my dermatologist's office called early afternoon to advise they had received the lab results from the excision.  You know when the nurse calls it is good news, because the doctor always calls with bad news.  They checked all the margins around, and under the melanoma and found no cancer anywhere, so it was contained to the upper layer of skin as the prior biopsy had indicated.  Well, that makes it all worthwhile, right?

In other RORVR news the electricians have returned and are replacing all the pedestals, and wiring in sites 43-51, which welcome news.  Once those sites are finished the monthly resident next to me (#72) can move back to his site in that row, and then I can move out of my site to get my 60 gallon propane tank refilled, and then into one of those repaired sites temporarily so my site (#71) and the one next to me (#72) can be re-leveled.  Once that is done we can move back into our site for the duration of our stay, and enjoy a more 'level' experience.  You may recall that we leveled site #70 about 5, or 6 weeks ago.  I am down to under 15 gallons of propane so I need to get that taken care of in the next few weeks, or we will have no hot water.

We continue to get temps in the mid to low 50's at night in spite of the daytime temps being in the high 80's to low 90's.  In about 10 days we will enter the final long weekend of the summer....Labor Day weekend, and the season will be over.  It get busy on the weekends, but nothing like the other RV parks at which we have worked the last few years.

That's pretty much it for me about Tuesday.  A couple more days of R&R and I'll be back to work......I'll leave you with this great Mary Wells song.....Two Lovers.....


Thanks for stopping by!

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Tuesday, August 20, 2019

'Days like this.....'

7:59 am - Tuesday - August 20th - Ramona, CA - 55° F, 80% humidity, wind - CALM.....bright, blue, sunny skies today with a forecast high of 91° F.  I'm off work today, tomorrow and Thursday.

Monday at 9:30 am was the day and time of my 'excision'.  A couple of weeks ago I met with my dermatologist, Dr. Jou, to get a referral to a 'MOHS' surgeon who will remove the rest of the 'basil cell carcinoma' from the top of my right ear.  "Mohs surgery is a precise surgical technique used to treat skin cancer. During Mohs surgery, thin layers of cancer-containing skin are progressively removed and examined until only cancer-free tissue remains. Mohs surgery is also known as Mohs micrographic surgery."  Fortunately, basil cell carcinoma is easy to treat....you just remove it.  

During our discussion he asked me if he could examine all of my skin surface to be sure there were no other problems, and I agreed....thank God.  He found a couple of areas he was concerned about and took biopsies.  One of the biopsies came back negative (nothing going on there), but the other came back as Stage zero (Ø) melanoma.  Melanoma is the bad one, but stage 'Ø' means it is only in the very top layer of skin, and it is just a matter of removing it.  No further treatment is necessary.  Stage Ø means it was caught in its infancy, and full recovery is like 99.99%.  There is no history of melanoma in my family, so I am the first.  On Monday Dr. Jou excised that area.  The melanoma itself was about the size of a dime, but he excised an area the size of a quarter which meant a lot of stitches because he then had to elongate the incision so he would be able to close it properly.  After all was said and done the excision area was a little larger than the size of an adult eye, and as a result I'll have to avoid working for about 3 more days to allow healing to begin and prevent any post surgical bleeding......that blood thinner (Brillinta) I am taking is working well.

The procedure took about 45 minutes and we were then on our way over to Dr. Ashley Ruben to have my future MOHS surgery consultation.  After the consultation the MOHS surgery was scheduled for next Tuesday (August 27th).  Once that is done I will be, hopefully, done with surgery for a long time.  If it is even possible, it seems our decision not to go to Alaska this summer seems even more momentous now.

After a quick stop at Stater Brothers to pick up a few grocery items we were home a little after 12 pm.  Needless to say, but I'll say it anyway, I spent the rest of Monday in my recliner doing as little as possible.

After all that has transpired with me physically over the last couple of years I am really beginning to feel my mortality.  So far I have come through all of it just fine, but sometimes in the quiet times of the night I wonder what is coming next, right?  The rest of the time I just keep pushing forward, and looking forward.  It's a beautiful day today, and life continues to be good to TLE and I.

I'll leave you with the great Van Morrison song........



Thanks for stopping by!

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Monday, August 19, 2019

'Shades of gray.....'

6:40 am - Monday - August 19th - Ramona, CA - 58° F, 97% humidity, wind -CALM.........clear, blue skies.

Sunday was a laid back day for us.  We started off with a couple of laps around RORVR totaling around 2.7 miles.  Then we hung out watching two English Premier soccer matches on the outdoor TV for the rest of the morning.  The weather was perfect, just like it has been the entire weekend.


At some point during the morning after the soccer matches TLE began doing several loads of wash, and I began to watch golf.  We have DirecTV, but we just have the basic channel package.....no HBO, CINEMAX, Showtime, etc., but occasionally DirecTV will give us HBO, or one of the other movie channels free for a weekend, and this weekend we had HBO.  Several years ago before we got rid of the movie channels I watched GOT (Game of Thrones) for one, or two seasons, and have watched a few episodes over the years when we had HBO for free.  I did not see the final season, but HBO was replaying the final season this weekend, so I watched the final three episodes to at least see how it ended.  Pretty much everyone dies except the dwarf and a couple of Starks.

Around 6 pm TLE had me grill some white fish so she could make fish tacos.  She has just begun to experiment with making fish tacos, and this was her best effort to date.....




.....words are not adequate to express how grateful I am we can eat outside this summer as often as we do. We have not been able to do that very much the last two summers (Yellowstone and Southwest Harbor), but this summer the evening weather has most often been quite agreeable.  Back in our South Lake Tahoe days we ate outside a lot, and I have missed that.  It is one of the multitudinous benefits of this lifestyle. 

I wont' be working Monday as I have an appointment down in Poway at my dermatologist to have a mole removed from my side.  It will be outpatient, and all is good.....I'll let it go at that.....no additional treatment required.

I'll leave you with a great Monkees song from the 60's.......Shades of gray......


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Sunday, August 18, 2019

'A Sunday kind of love.....'

7:26 am - Sunday - August 18th - Ramona, CA - 59° F, 87% humidity, wind - CALM....clear, blue skies today with a forecast high of 86° F....suweet!

I really dislike having to get up at 6 am when I do not have to go to work.  I dislike it, but I did anyway on Saturday.  TLE and I have birthdays about 3 weeks apart.  In California you must renew your license every few years by your birthday.  In our case we last renewed them in South Lake Tahoe almost 5 years ago.  We both got notices from the California DMV within about 3 weeks of each other advising we would have to visit a local DMV to renew our licenses, take an eye test, and a written test.  We had to do this 5 years ago after decades of getting automatic renewals every few years.  When you get to a certain age there are no more automatic renewals regardless of how good your driving record (neither of us has any accidents, or tickets in the last 9 years).

We attempted to get 'reservations' online about 2 weeks ago, but the only ones available in the entire area were at 3:30 pm on August 29th in Escondido for me, and at 2 pm for TLE in San Marcos on the same date.  Well, if you have ever been to a California DMV in a big urban area you know by 2 pm in the afternoon they will be way, way behind, forget about my 3:30 pm appointment.  Getting a reservation at most California DMV's only gets you in the front door more quickly to the next long line.  TLE found that the Poway DMV is open on Saturdays from 8 am to 5 pm, so we figured we would just drive down there at 7 am, and get in line, so that is why I was up at 6 am Saturday.

We arrived at the Poway DMV by 7:35 am and found the line only 75' long....by 8 am when they opened the doors it was 200' long!  They had employees outside before 8 am getting those in line checked in, and assigned a number.  Our numbers were G-26 and G-27, so that meant there were only 25 people in front of us renewing their licenses......


 Already up to G-13 and it's only 8:30 am!

......we sat patiently talking about this and that, totally unconcerned with how long it might take, and why should we be?  We had no where else to be.  Before we knew it TLE's number (G-26) was being called, and it was only 8:45 am.  My number was called about 5 minutes later and we were off to the races.....


......I passed my eye test, filled out some paperwork about why I no longer had to wear glasses for distance vision (cataract surgery), then was sent to get my 5 year picture taken, and take the test.  Both TLE and I had been taking the online practice tests on the DMV site, and were ready.  There are about 25 questions, and I think I missed 2, so I passed.  TLE missed a couple, also, but in the end we had our temporary drivers licenses with the permanent ones to arrive within 4 weeks.  We chose not to get the Californa 'Real ID', which will be required after October 1, 2020 to board domestic airline flights as we forgot to bring our birth certificates.  Doesn't really matter, because we both have 10 year U.S. Passports, and they can be used, if the need should arise, to board an airplane

The Poway DMV is in the same parking lot as the Poway Super Walmart, so we drove across the parking lot and did a quick grocery shopping before heading back to RORVR.  We were home a little after 10 am....not too bad!

On our drive home TLE suggested we head to the Ramona Ranch Winery later in the afternoon (around 3 pm) to sip some of their great Savignon Blanc accompanied by some snacks.  We spent the time between our arrival home, and 3 pm outside watching two recorded English Premier Soccer matches.

At 3 pm sharp we were in the VW heading 1 mile down SR-78 to Ramona Ranch Winery.  We had the whole patio to ourselves.......nice.....




....we bought a bottle of their Savignon Blanc (chilled) and spent the next 90 minutes relaxing, and enjoying the great views...




.....by 4:30 pm we were on our way home again.  The temp only got up to 84° F Saturday, which made for a quite pleasant time sitting outside.

In closing I'll leave you with another great Etta James song dedicated to The Lovely Elaine.....'A Sunday kind of love'......none of what we do, and how we live would mean much without her in my life.......


A Sunday kind of love....

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Saturday, August 17, 2019

'You'll lose a good thing....'

1:01 pm - Friday - August 16th - Ramona, CA - 86° F, 37% humidity, wind 13 mph out of the northwest....clear, blue skies with a forecast high today of 93° F.

Ahhh, Friday!  Only 5 hours of work Friday.....ahhh!  After two days of temps close to 100° F, the temp dropped down to 93° F Friday.  Anytime it is under 95° F it is way more comfortable.....just 5, or 6 degrees cooler makes all the difference.

Friday it is time to vacuum and sweep the pool, and that is what I was about at 7 am once again.  I was finished just before 9 am and headed down to the office for our 9 am morning meeting after which I headed back up the hill to the Red Barn to rake the horseshoe pits.  I noticed that the Red Barn parking lot was covered with pine needles and in great need of being cleaned so I retrieved the backpack blower and spent an hour blowing the pine needles, dirt and dust off the parking lot.  From there I headed down to the mini golf holes and dispatched another few pounds of eucalyptus leaves before heading back down to the office.  

TLE asked me to check the porch light on Cabin #65 as our customer had reported it not working.  As it turned out the bulb was burnt out, so I replaced it, and that brought me right up to quitting time....I love Friday's.

I was home a little after 12 pm taking a shower, and then read a book for a couple of hours until TLE came home from her short shift.  We spent the rest of the afternoon reading, the watching a recording of the series finale of 'Elementary'.  They wrapped up the 7 year series very nicely, and I even shed a couple of tears along the way.

For dinner TLE made up some bleu cheese hamburger paddies for me to grill.  We ate them alfresco whilst listening to the Sam Cooke channel on Pandora.....by 6 pm the air had cooled off nicely......



.....I'll leave you with a great song by Barbara Lynn called "You'll lose a good thing...."


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