Saturday, April 14, 2018

It's Friday and time for more 'until next times'....

6:55 am - Saturday - April 14th - SoCal - 56º F, 26% humidity, wind 4 mph out of the north.....clear blue skies with a forecast high today of 85º F.  Enjoying the low humidity while I can.  As we head northeast it will definitely be more humid.  I am happy to report that today, the 4th day after the unfortunate bicycle acrobatics of Tuesday I am feeling much, much better.  My elbow is healing nicely, and my ribs, although still sore, are not impeding me too much from normal activity.  By this Tuesday, our new departure day, I am quite confident I will be ready to drive the Newell and change our view once again.

Friday morning it was so chilly (Chilly is one of those relative terms I use, right?  It wasn't Desert View was SoCal chilly) I actually turned on the front electric heater to take the chill off the salon area.  I really love temps in the low 70's and overnight lows in the mid to low 40's.  That is my perfect climate.  Why can't it just be that every single day no matter where you live?  Of course, I also wish rain water were beer......but it's not.

We had very low aspirations for Friday.  With the wind there was not much I was willing to do outside, and I've pretty much got the trailer under control.  So, what do you do on a day without much to do except stay inside?  You work on your 2017 taxes which are due by April 17th this year.  For the past 15 years I have filed for an extension, without fail, every single year.  That was back in the time when I owned property, had 5 children, most of which still lived at home, had a lot of business expenses, and filed 4, or 5 schedules.  I have now, finally, arrived at the point in my life where the Federal 1040 is the only form I file for our Federal schedule A, C, SE, D, or any other letters.  I can now use the California 540 EZ form and use the standard deductions and exemptions on everything.  Before I was always waiting for some odd 1099 form to show up when tax day arrived, so I just filed for the automatic 6 month extension.  Actually completing and filing my taxes before tax day is quite a new feeling, and I like it a lot.

At any rate I sat down about 10 am to begin working on my taxes.  First up was the Federal 1040 off which everything else works.  Since we worked in California, Wyoming and Arizona this year I have W-2's from all those places.  I finally got our W-2's from our California job (TVC) a few days ago so there was no reason for me not to do my taxes before the current deadline.  I had the 1040 form completed in about an hour, and we are getting back just shy of $400.....yay!  Then it was on to the state forms.  I hate California's form, which I have been completing all my life.  It is four pages long (the 1040 is just 2), and very confusing.   Wyoming does not have income tax so no form for them, but Arizona has income tax so it was on to their confusing , but short 2 page form.  By 1 pm the deed was done.  We're getting an additional $26 back from California, and we owe Arizona $4.  We chose not to have any withholding done while we worked at the Grand Canyon as we knew we would get more than enough back from the Feds to cover and taxes due Arizona, and we were right.

I was so 'exhausted' I decided to take a nice nap.  Just as I was dozing off TLE asked me when we were going to run our errands.  Wait, what?  Errands?  Oh yeah, we needed to make some clothing donations to Good Willy, drop off all that stuff from the trailer I decided we didn't need to carry around anymore at Chris' warehouse, and stop at Stater Bros. (California supermarket chain) on the way home to do some shopping.  Ah well, I'm willing to sacrifice one nap for the greater good, so we were off in a cloud of dust!  By the time we were finished running around and back home it was around 2:30, and time for that nap I didn't get earlier.

We had made arrangements to meet my dear brother Philip and his wife, Jeannie, at Pomona Valley Mining Company (in Pomona, CA, of course) for dinner at 7 pm.  He and Jeannie live in Temple City (about 40 miles west of Fontana) so it is kind of a half way point for both of us.....and we love the view!  We've been eating at this restaurant for at least 30 years, and I am always very grateful they are still in business every time we come through SoCal.

We left the Elks Lodge at 6:15 pm, because it can take as long as 45 minutes to get there if the traffic doesn't cooperate, but on this night we got there in 25 minutes.  Since we were 20 minutes early for our reservation we went into the bar to order some drinks, and wait for Phil and Jeannie to arrive.  

Phil is 14 years younger than I.  He is actually closer in age (only 7 years older) to my oldest son, Chris, than he is to me.  There are 5 children in my family.  I was the first born, and my oldest sister, Jill, was born 2 years after me.  The last three (Dwyer, Hilary and Philip) are 10, 12 and 14 years younger than I am.  I didn't really develop significant relationships with them until I was in my 40's.  It was  like we had two separate families, even though all 5 of us had the same mother and father.  Anyway, Philip and I have become very good friends in the last 20 years, and actually took vacations together for about 10 years before we went on the road.  He is also the only sibling who still lives in SoCal.....the other three are spread to the four winds (Washington, Michigan and Utah).  So, whenever we are in town it is imperative that we hook up with Phil and Jeannie at least once for dinner.......

......I was trying to capture a picture of the view of the surrounding area and I-10 traffic, but inadvertently caught Philip and Jeannie's reflection in the cool is that?

We talked, drank, and ate for almost 3 hours, and I loved every single minute of it.  I keep telling Philip and Jeannie they need to chuck everything, get a motorhome, and come out on the road with us, but at 54 they are not yet ready to retire.  Not being able to see them on a regular basis, and take vacations with them is one of the downsides of the nomadic lifestyle we have adopted, and we miss them terribly.

The restaurant was getting ready to close at 10 pm, so we said our 'until next times', hugged each other more than once, and then headed back to Fontana.  As I sit here writing today's missive there is a little pang in my heart knowing we will not see them for almost a year.  TLE and I have spent literally 100's and 100's of hours sitting around campfires with Phil and Jeannie laughing, crying and telling great stories.

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  1. Safe travels my friend, you will LOVE Maine! Glad your feeling better!

    1. Thank you Roscoe and Geni.....we are very excited. See you in Florida!