Thursday, November 19, 2015

The beginning and the end

I've written often these past few days about how the sun suddenly breaks over the hills into cloudless skies just to the east of us, and here is what it looks like at 0720 hours at the beginning of our day........

.......and this is how most of our days on the Rincon end as the sun once again slides over the edge of the almost cloudless horizon which will ultimately give someone else a sunrise......

Rincon sunset #7

While we have been enjoying warm, cloudless and mostly windless days since we arrived at the Rincon last Thursday I heard from my sister in Spokane Tuesday advising they were having very high winds, and had lost I understand now from the news, over 350,000 people lost power, and most, including my sister, are still without power this morning.  Fortunately she and her husband installed a large household natural gas generator a few years ago, and it has been running non-stop now for close to 3 days with at least a few more days to go before power is restored.  My mother, who has an apartment a few miles away also lost power, so she has been staying with my sister since then.

This got me to thinking about how fragile the sticks and bricks world is for most people, and how important it is to be self sufficient whether you live in a sticks and bricks home, or as we do, in an RV.  We have been striving for self sufficiency since we embarked on our endless journey almost four years ago, and with the addition of 2 more solar panels are getting closer.  All it takes is a humongous storm of any kind like the wind storm in Spokane to turn your world upside down.  No doubt most people in Spokane do not have a 'whole house' generator to provide power, which in turn gives them much needed heat.....the lows at night are in the low 20's there, and barely getting to the low 40's in the day time.  Without electricity, which permeates every aspect of our daily lives, we are screwed.....unless we have taken steps to become self sufficient.

So, with that in mind here are a few stats from the first 7 days of our sojourn here on the Rincon.....we arrived with 145 gallons of fresh water, a full propane tank (48 gallons), a full gas can for the small generator (6 gallons), empty gray and black tanks, and the promise of sunny skies.  Seven days in we still have just over 100 gallons of fresh water....our gray tank is about 1/3 full, and our black tank just over 1/4 full.  We have not run the big generator one time since we arrived, and used our small generator to watch TV at night twice.  We have reached 100% on our batteries 4 out of the first 6 days, and expect to return to 100% again today making it 5 out of 7 days.  A little context is in order as regards the use of our 7.5 kw generator......when we were dry camping last February, March and April with only 2 solar panels we would often have to run the big generator for at least an hour in the morning to give ourselves a chance at getting back to 100%.....we were able to get back to 100% about half the time....sometimes less.  Our goal when we added the 3rd and 4th solar panels was to avoid having to use either of our generators to charge our batteries, and we seem to be achieving that goal.

So what was Wednesday like on the Rincon?  I took a 14.33 mile bike ride and I spent the rest of the day outside reading....TLE spent the entire day reading....sometimes outside, sometimes inside.....she likes to move around....:-)  We ended the day as we try to do every day.....watching the sun set in the west accompanied by a fire, some adult beverages, a cigar for moi, and then dinner.  This day TLE had me grill some carne asada for tacos which included avocados, tomatoes, cheese and the aforementioned carne asada in hard shells.  We capped off the evening watching the latest episode of 'Survivor', and then read until after 2200 hours before touching our heads to our pillows one more time.

I've said it so often that it begins to seem trite after a while, but life is truly good.......

Thanks for stopping by!

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