Thursday, December 7, 2006

Coming up for air

I'm sorry I have been unable to update the site lately. Things have been both emotional and hectic since my last post after Thanksgiving.

We are settled in at the Sunnyvale Elks lodge (map), where a handful of spots are available with water and electric hookups. It is just a few short blocks to Edith's house from here, making the daily trek there easy, and just as easy to come home to walk the dog. We'll be here until the 15th, when we leave for Hawaii for ten days. We've made arrangements to kennel the pets and to securely store Odyssey while we are away. After we return, we'll again find a place to park somewhere here in the bay area until around the second week in January.

Bob's memorial service was Tuesday, and Louise's brother David, a minister, officiated before a packed church. Seven or eight people got up to share their remembrances, and I learned another thing or two about Bob's many activities and affiliations. Clearly he was well-loved by many and will be missed.

The night before the service, while at dinner with Edith, David, and a few of Edith's close friends in town for the memorial, we got another disturbing phone call. Louise's dad, Jerry, had passed out earlier in the day and was rushed to the hospital, suffering from atrial fibrillation. They are in Tucson in their RV, en route to David's house in Houston for Christmas. Jerry is doing well, and atrial fibrillation is a controllable condition, although he will be on medication for it from now on.

There are some logistical consequences to all this, namely they will need to stay in Tucson for two weeks while the doctors monitor him and adjust the medications, and then he is prohibited from traveling further by RV, since he will need to be within ACLS transport distance of a capable hospital for the next few months. (Traveling through the west, one spends a great deal of time in areas where transport to a trauma center, even by helicopter, can be a proposition of an hour or more, a key reason why we carry our own defibrillator aboard Odyssey). We're trying to remain flexible in case Kay needs help moving the RV either to Houston or back home to Monterey. They had been planning to sell it after this trip anyway, so one possibility is to sell it there in Tucson, which will still leave them with the issue of what to do with the car that they are towing.

We wish Jerry a speedy recovery and hope that he and Kay will be able to fulfill their plans to spend the holiday with David's family.

We've spent the last couple weeks helping Edith with Bob's estate. Specifically, he had a lot of items relating to his many hobbies, including myriad pieces of computer equipment, genealogy files and programs, and photo equipment. Not to mention many files related to his work. We've been busy sorting through it all, filing those things that Edith will need, and finding good homes for everything else. The pile of computer equipment, some of it obsolete, has been quite a challenge. I've been busy erasing confidential data, and selling much of it on eBay.

In the next few days, we should have most of the affairs in order, and we'll be able to head off for Hawaii with a mostly clean plate. Our cruise documents arrived yesterday, and we were pleased to learn that our pot-luck cabin assignments yielded an upgrade of five categories (from a tiny room, albeit with a balcony, on deck 7, with a mediocre view, to an equally tiny room on deck 9, with a much better view).

After we return on the 26th, we're committed to remain here in the bay area through at least the first week in January. After that, the crystal ball is very cloudy. We have three major items that need to be addressed, sooner rather than later, to wit: the upper windshield needs to be replaced, preferably before chunks of it start popping out; the bent tag-axle A-frame needs to be replaced, and some vibration coming from the right front wheel needs to be fixed. That being said, the windshield and A-frame parts are in Nashville, so those items will have to wait until we work our way over there.

One possibility is that we may go to Quartzsite for the latter half of January, where the DOVE's will be having a rally, and where several other groups that we know will be lurking. Just a month later, on Presidents' Day, a group of our friends will have their annual get-together in Death Valley, so we might just hang out in the desert for a month, somewhere near the Colorado River valley, or perhaps a quick jaunt back into Baja or Sonora. As spring approaches, we'll need to be heading toward Nashville.

Whatever we end up doing, I will resume a more regular post schedule here once we get back under way.

I still have a head full of observations about our Mexico trip that I want to post here, and I will make every effort to do that before we leave for Hawaii (and before it starts to dim in my memory). I also have a GPS track log of our entire route through Mexico, but, as yet, I have not found a good way to turn that into a line on a map that I can post here. Any suggestions on that front are appreciated.

Lastly, let me again thank everyone who has offered words of support and encouragement. I'm sorry we have not been able to get back to everyone individually in these last couple weeks. When we get back from Hawaii, we'll try to get caught up on email, as well as get in touch with the many people here in the bay area that we've been too busy to contact.

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