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Monday, March 28, 2011

Nuthin' Exciting

     I realize that is has been over a week since I last posted.  Unfortunately, during the times we are comfortably ensconced in South Carolina, I almost have to manufacture news.  I did have the opportunity to shoot a couple of nice eagle pictures from our back yard this week.  Cindy is on her annual spring cruise with her college roommate, Peggy, a doctor in Oklahoma City.  We are taking care of Cindy's two her house which is a short walk away.  We have been doing some housecleaning in anticipation of house guests next week.  I just love (!) getting the ladder out to wash some of our upper windows.  The pressure washer guy for the outside arrives Saturday.  It is a bit surprising how lazy I have become in my old age.  I guess I have to admit it. 
     Here's an interesting Whirlpool story.  Our refrigerator has begun to make occasional knocking noises.  They are quiet and easily ignorable, but Baxter thinks someone is knocking on the front door and goes into his loud and continuous warning bark.  He's not the brightest bulb on the tree.  I made a call to Whirlpool and rearranged some of the hoses on the back of the refrigerator and may have fixed the problem.  We will see.
     We got our first rain in three weeks, and I got some fertilizer down before it arrived.  The temperature at the moment is 43.  We turned the heat on for the first time since we came back from Florida.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Back in South Carolina

     I was going to take a picture of the bus in front of the house to use for my arrival/home blog.  Unfortunately it made its way to the RV storage lot at Joint Base Charleston before I took the picture.  We arrived in Hanahan at 1515 Monday.  Cindy was here ready to help and we were unloaded by 1700.  We then crashed around some pizza and beer.  Tuesday I flushed the tanks, defrosted, etc.  It is convenient to have a standard 4 inch access to the sewer line right in our front yard.  Durelle washed all the linens and on Wednesday we returned the bus to the storage yard.  We have landing strips under the tires, tire covers installed, and mirror covers mounted (thanks, George).  It won't move again until May.  I'll make a run to Gaffney, SC (Freightliner factory) in early May for the annual preventive maintenance stop.  Then we'll start our 2011 trip.  This time we are going to swing south through Houston (Hello Roths and Lowreys) then to Colorado for a month or so.  From there we'll head to Empire. MI (Hello Dick and Jeanette), then across Canada and into Maine for August and Part of September.  There will be a Cloutier family reunion in MA in September.  Then we'll wander back to SC for the winter.  So we face a couple of months of blogs with no travels.  Perhaps some pictures of pressure washing the house will work.  Actually we are expecting a series of houseguests in April.  We look forward to playing host and showing them some of Charleston.  Stay warm.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Seaside, Florida

     For the motorhomers following this intermittent diary, today was a rendezvous with Dick and Eleanor Roth.  They have been "full-timers" for at least a dozen years, and our paths have crossed many times and will again.  Seaside is about halfway between Tyndall AFB and Destin, FL where they are currently parked.  We have made the same connection before.  We were gone from the bus for five hours, so the Kerlins, and their golden, Reddy, took Baxter for a walk while we were gone.  Brenda reports that Baxter did just fine.
     For you northerners, Eleanor and I had crawfish linguini.  It was really good.  There was more Andouille sausage than crawfish, but that's OK.  Given the weather in the rest of the country, it would be small of me to complain about the fact that the temperature here tonight may drop into the 30s, so I won't.  This is a most pleasant place to take the dog for a walk after his supper at five.  By the way, at five on weekdays the Retreat formation is broadcast over loudspeakers.  It is good, if we are outside to pay the proper respects to the flag and the ceremony.  There is a long nature trail along the bayou and there are usually other walkers doing the same thing.  Our site faces west into the sunset over the bayou.  It couldn't be much more pleasant.  We'll leave Sunday and get home Monday.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

250th post

     For my 250th post I probably should be documenting some momentous event or memorable pictures.  Alas, you will have to settle for Joey's Oyster Bar, a pleasant informal oyster bar just a couple of miles west of our campsite.  The place is open from 4 to 9 because Joey is on the water for the first half of the day.  The second picture is titled in my files, "Breakfast of Champions".  He didn't bring me a tray on ice of a dozen.  Rather, he shucked 'em, set them on the tray and I ate them at a slightly slower rate than he shucked 'em.  I said, "I hope you're counting because I lost count."  There were somewhere north of two dozen fresh, clean, salty oysters and two bottles of Yuengling for $19.70.  There was no little serving fork.  You simply poured them out of the shell into your mouth...outstanding.  By the way, he did confirm the possibility of a loon sighting.
     Tonight we are going up to the club house for the weekly pot luck supper.  Durelle has made her old standby, rice pilaf.

Monday, March 7, 2011

We moved

     We got a knock on the door this morning.  The guy in the golf cart said that we had moved our way up the waiting list for a sewer site.  We liked the one we had, but for a week we decided to move.  Two sites were available.  One was up by the clubhouse, but it was not a satellite site.  So we moved from #16 to #19 and retained our view of the Pearl Bayou.  As you can imagine, the preparation to move one of these things is almost the same for a hundred meter move or a hundred mile move.  We have basically the same view and the logistics are the same.  After we got backed in and I was setting up, Durelle and Baxter were over at the edge of the bayou.  She interrupted my efforts by calling me over to see something.  My initial reaction, of course, was not enthusiastic, but I went.  Then she said that there was a loon out there on the bayou.  The most generous description of my expression was "sceptical".  But, guess what, it was a loon.  She heard it and I didn't really believe it.  When I got over there, I didn't hear it, but it was a loon.  Even though we were not close enough to see the chararcteristic eyes and plumage, I could tell that it was riding low in the water like a loon and Durelle was convinced that she recognized the call.  I sure didn't expect to see a loon in Florida.  Any of you bird watchers out there have a comment? 
     We went to a nearby seafood restaurant last evening, but they didn't have oysters on the half shell.  I spotted an oyster bar in the area and went there for lunch today.  Durelle doesn't do oysters.  Then I found that they were open only from 4-9 PM.  So I have still have not had my oyster fix.  I will.
     The pictures show Durelle and Baxter in a swing in front of our bus and a couple of sunset pictures.  The last one was taken from inside the bus.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

The Air Force's Navy

      These pictures won't win any photography awards, but they capture an unusual sight.  I'll bet you didn't know that the Air Force operates a number of seagoing vessels.  Some are in use to support the water survival school.  Some provide down range instrumentation for some missile launch sites.  The ones you see here...this layman would call them trawlers...are 60+ feet long.  They are used to recover the Teledyne-Ryan AQM-34 target drones that are used out over the Gulf of Mexico as targets in live fire, air to air training for the F-22's and others here at Tyndall AFB.  The missiles are programmed with an offset error so that the drones can be re-used.  At the end of a mission the drones are flown to a designated recovery area where they deploy a parachute, descend to the gulf and are picked up by the USAF Navy.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Stayin' warm

     Tonight my plan, after we took our evening 45 minute walk, was to sit outside in a lawnchair with a martini watching the charcoal to be ready for a steak and watching the light for a sunset picture.  There were no clouds tonight and the sunset picture didn't really develop.  There was a point, however, when the late sun was filtering through the Spanish moss in the live oaks that provided an interesting picture.  I hope you like it.  RVing is not a continual string of exciting events and photo-ops.  Today was a very quiet day.  We stayed in while Durelle did a couple of loads of wash.  Since we are not in a sewer site, that means that I am going to have to do the blueboy trip again tomorrow.  That's OK, it beats a transfer to the quarter-eating machines at the laundry.