Saturday, March 6, 2010

My Perfect Job...and...Be Careful What You Sit On!

I was surfing the internet today around various discussion boards and through some new blogs I haven’t look at before.

The theme of the day seemed to be Work -- that awful 4 letter word that most try to avoid if at all possible.

Nevertheless it was a topic that kept coming up.

It seems this is the hot time of year for those that  Workamp to be either getting to their jobs or finding their jobs.

I have seen some urgency on the part of the employers that have not secured workers for the 2010 season. 

I saw a question asked on one of the boards as to if a person or couple could make a living Workamping.

I found the answers to be interesting.  All the answers that were given were roughly the same.  Yes, you can make a living.  What you end up doing to accomplish that may be the question.

I also found a couple of sites where the writers were discussing the same jobs that they had been going to for a number of years that were no longer available. 

The reason for this was that the owners had employed either family or friends that had become unemployed.  Hmm... Interesting.

There are also jobs outside of Workamping that can be secured -- full time jobs in areas that the full timers wished to stay.  There plan was to see the area on the weekends when not working.

I suppose this all fit in well with an email I received today asking...With my background what would I consider my perfect job?

This was a great question!

Which of course started me thinking about an answer.

Although I can’t say I know what the perfect job would be exactly, there are three main components that I would desire.

1) Working around and with people.

2) Being able to bring value to whatever endeavor I am associated with.

3) To be in a location that I find enjoyable.

If those 3 things are present I would expect that I could make it enjoyable.

So we continue to look for opportunities.  Actually the opportunities are coming to us.

We have received a number of inquiries asking if we would be interested in positions.  We also received a call offering us a position.

These are coming from the Workamper News site where we have posted our resume.

We haven’t decided on anything yet.

This may sound strange but we are pretty sure when the right opportunity shows up -- there will be no doubt it is the right one.

I know my posts about working don’t apply to a lot of the readers here, however, there do seem to be more than I expected that are very interested in this topic.

I will keep you informed as we move along with this part of our adventure. 

We are still learning a lot in the area of workamping.  Who the really good employers are the ones to avoid and about the different areas where jobs exist.

It is really an exciting thing to learn about.

I wanted to update you on the issue with Toyota -- let me just say Toyota is highly motivated these days to do whatever they can for their customers. 

They are looking into the problem we are having to see what they can do for us.

Yeah!

Then there was this...

My morning routine was interrupted today...

I have this robe that I really like -- it has many miles on it but it is very thick and long.  A great winter robe. 

It is the first thing I put on in the morning.

This morning after turning on the coffee I went outside as I always do to get some fresh air -- and well as I just like going outside in the morning.

We have a wooden picnic table just off our deck that looks out over the river.

So I decided to sit down for a minute on the picnic table.

I sat down -- looked out over the river enjoying the view and the birds singing.  It was so peaceful.

There were a couple of things that I should have taken into account BEFORE I sat down.

The first was it was 16 degrees last night.

The second was there was a thin layer of frost on the table.

Then I decided to stand up.

So I did.

My robe, however, did not!

It had stuck to the table -- iced right up!

I had to pull it off of the wood and it sounded like the fabric was being ripped in two.

I finally got it loose and in one piece.

No, it did not come off or anything like that!

We are at the end of the row of RVs and nobody would  have seen anything inappropriate anyway but everything stayed intact anyway.

So...the lesson for today...if you are in a cold place...careful when and where you sit!

That is all for today!  Thank you for stopping by and as always keep those comments and emails coming!

Ken and Nanette

Friday, March 5, 2010

About Me and The Great Watermelon Caper...

This is going to be a very difficult post for me.

You see I am not very comfortable talking about myself.  I never have been.

I have been very blessed in my life -- I have had opportunities given to me that have been simply wonderful.

I guess the way to start this...is...well to start it.

One of the questions I used to struggle with was “What do you do?”

I would always stumble on the answer. 

I would always throw out whatever title I had at the time.  This never explained “what” I did.  So the second question was always coming.  “So what does that entail?”

I guess for the purpose of our blog I will say that my career was not a career -- it was more of a calling.

I realize that what we do is secondary to who we are.

We are after all a composite of all our life experiences.  What I did was based on who I am and the things that I cared about deeply.

I have for my entire working life done one thing.  That was to help people be successful in whatever they were attempting. 

For the last 4 jobs I held the title of Chief Operating Officer.  What this meant was I was the executive responsible for operations -- including personnel -- the financial bottom line -- overall planning and performance of the company.

To me it always meant -- helping people be successful -- just like I wrote above.

When I was in my late 20’s I got a question stuck in my head -- a question that changed my life.

That question was --  “Why are some people able to achieve their goals and some are not?”

The search for this answer lead me to years of research.  I began to study people that had been successful in all walks of life.  This was not just in business it was in personal life, sports accomplishments, the arts, leadership and so on.

What I found was that people that were able to achieve the goals they set had the same things in common.

There ended up being over 100 things they had in common.

I simply looked for and applied these concepts. For the most part my research proved to be valid.  To the extent these characteristics were evident the level of achievement followed.

This is the VERY short version.  I have worked in many diverse environments.  The next thing you will read is an introduction that someone else wrote that wraps up my working life.

Ken is an internationally known educator and lecturer. He is noted for his singular ability to communicate and implement modern psychological concepts as they relate to personal and organizational performance and value increase. He delivers his message in a unique, dramatic style that is both understandable and entertaining. His natural and relaxed manner communicates these concepts in a way that makes them meaningful and immediately applicable on a personal and professional level.

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A talented and sought after senior executive, consultant and speaker, Ken teaches the findings of numerous internationally recognized cognitive psychologists in demonstrating how important thought patterns, belief systems and operational reality are to individual and, organizational performance in regard to goal achievement.

Having worked with elite military organizations as well as Fortune 500 companies throughout the world he has become a recognized expert in the area of developing, implementing, and achieving a balanced successful performance standard within virtually any environment.

Ken is currently the Chief Operating Officer for The Griffin Group, a company that manages and protects over five billion dollars in vital assets.

In addition, with over twenty years of technical, emergency management, security and operational experience in the Nuclear Power Industry, he is well rounded in the experiences and challenges of performing in highly-regulated high-stress environments with zero tolerance for error and successful performance an absolute necessity.

Ken brings to the listener a wealth of knowledge and techniques that those who have had the benefit of receiving have found to be priceless when applied to their personal, professional and organizational endeavors.

- Written by Department of Homeland Security -- The Keynote Address - Louisville, KY.

So there you have it for what it is worth.

I have always thought  I would like to meet that guy someday.  I don’t see myself as that but it was their words not mine.

To me -- I am just Ken.

On the personal side -- I love the outdoors, fishing, and exploring.  I have had some interesting hobbies like -- Aerobatic Pilot -- scuba diving -- guitar and keyboard playing -- and a bunch of other stuff.

We have a lot of fun -- in whatever we do -- and we love this lifestyle.

I love to learn -- plain and simple.  I am very curious as to why things happen.

So now you might understand why I love the blogs and the communication we have with you.  There is so much to learn and so many great people to learn from.

So that is it about me...

Let me tell you about the Great Watermelon Caper.

Remember when I told you about the horse show where dad decided to put my brother and Trigger in the pole racing event?

Well that horse show lasted for a week.  During this time we stayed at the fairgrounds at night.

We slept in the barns where the horses were kept for the night.

At this time I was about 12 years old.  Along with me were a bunch of other kids belonging to our 4H club.  So we had sufficient ranks to cause trouble.

What one of us didn’t think of to do -- there were plenty more to come up with ideas.

Well -- there was this one guy named David who could always be counted upon to come up with the absolutely worst idea known to man.

On this one night of the horse show he didn’t disappoint.

On the way into the horse show it seems David spied some fresh watermelons sitting outside a store about 2 miles away.

His bright idea was to go get us some of those watermelons.

Someone brought up the fact that this would be stealing. 

To which he replied -- we will just leave some money for what we take.

That sounded like it met a moral imperative to me!

So -- we mounted our horses and off to the store we went.  Of course we weren’t supposed to leave the grounds -- but we were apparently on a quest!

We get to the store and start picking out watermelons.

There were a number of problems that began to develop with this grand plan.

The first -- That we could each carry 2 watermelons -- on a horse!

The second -- Nobody left any money -- thinking someone else had done it -- yeah right!

The third -- we were 2 miles from our “hideout”.

The fourth -- we were riding along the only highway into and out of the horse show grounds.

The fifth -- The Sheriff Deputies were on increased patrols due to the horse show.

So events unfolded -- stay with me here!

As we went along back to the horse show grounds watermelons were being dropped along they way.  It is impossible to carry 2 watermelons at the same time while trying to ride a horse.

This trail of smashed and splattered watermelons made for a perfect trail back to the perps hideout.

We made it back to the stalls with our loot and were preparing our feast.

Police car sirens are very loud -- especially at 2 AM -- and the lights are very bright too.

Well we decided to make a run for it.  We all jumped on our horses and we were off.

At this point I need to explain to you how the horse barns were laid out.

There were 6 long barns sitting end to end.  In the barns there were horse stalls.  The horses were kept in their stalls by 2 x 4’s that slid in across each stall opening.  

The barns had dirt roads that surrounded them and went in between them.

What we had going on was a keystone cops sort of thing with the 3 Police cars chasing 12 horses complete with riders going around basically in circles.

I was one of the 12.

My horse was a Welsh Pony, black in color and named Pepper -- due to her color -- catchy huh. 

She was a barrel racer at heart -- very quick -- very determined.  She would respond, without question to my commands.

On this night my commands were to run --- run fast.

I was heading down the short end of one the barns and turning for the straightaway -- my way to freedom -- I thought.

Remember those stalls I was telling you about with the 2 X 4 that slid in to keep the horses in?

Well when they were slid out -- they stuck out on the ends and across the road.

Pepper never knew what hit her!

At a full gallop -- we found one of those 2 X 4s -- Pepper went down like a brick -- well other then the rolling over a couple of times.

As for me -- I went airborne!  Ringling Brothers Circus kind of airborne.  I don’t know how far I went but I do know how far I skidded.

About 4 layers of skin worth.

I got up -- and there laid Pepper.  I was sure I had just killed my horse. 

I knew instantly there would be a second killin’ this night and that was going to happen shortly after my dad found out.

I went over to Pepper and put my hand on her neck -- she immediately jumped up -- no stagger -- no nothing -- she just stood there looking at me -- kind of bewildered.  I know she must have been wondering if we won!

I never knew that my dad knew the Sheriffs Deputies.

Well he did -- and even though they never caught us -- they didn’t need to!

As I came walking around the barn back to Pepper’s stall -- there he sat -- right square in the middle of a pile of watermelons -- Unpaid for Watermelons!

Let me just say -- if I never have to clean out another stall it will be too soon! 

Our punishment besides paying for all the watermelons was to have to clean ALL the stalls in ALL the barns.  That was a lot of stalls!  And a lot of horse -- well you know.

Pepper never showed any ill effects from her high speed encounter with the 2 X 4.  She went on to win many races and remained my buddy for a very long time -- and was forever labeled my partner in crime!

Well that is it for today!

Ken and Nanette

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Flood Gates Opened...John...and Our Followers...

Well now... 

Today was an interesting day!

It seems today someone decided to share our Blog on Twitter. 

It was a VERY positive recommendation, which we are very thankful for, and a suggestion to visit. A very generous spirit of intent.

Apparently there were a LOT of followers on their Twitter account.

Because a LOT of them showed up!

We love visitors -- we were just a little surprised at the number and the diversity, shall we say, of the visitors.

I must admit that we did have a few comments come in and a few emails that were kind of “out of the norm”.

I found myself watching the comments very closely after a few were posted that were certainly not acceptable.  Nothing to do with the subject matter -- that was for sure!  smile_whatchutalkingabout

If anyone saw them before I got them removed I apologize -- we don’t moderate our comments so these things will happen sometimes.

But we made it through the day and met some really neat people!  The funny thing was they knew nothing about RVing -- but boy did they love the concept!

We received an email from the person that Tweeted about us -- apologizing for the problems.  I asked him if he was kidding me -- we loved having the visitors -- and the not so good stuff -- well that is just life.  Thanks Curt and we hope you find that RV you are searching for.

Hey John Showed Up!

About 1 PM a Class C Motorhome pulled in next to us -- and I decided to be a good neighbor. 

As the driver exited the vehicle I could see he looked very tired.  

You know that “Anybody have a spatula to get me detached from the driver’s seat” look?

Actually he looked like Al from The Bayfield Bunch -- now that I think about it -- but due to the fact that he was in a Class C -- I was pretty sure it wasn’t him. smile_regular

So out I went.

Hoping not to be intrusive I simply said hello and asked if he needed any help.  I was ready to turn around should he say no and leave him alone.

The last thing I ever want to do is bother someone.

But he told me that he may need a little help getting the power hooked up since he wasn’t sure he had the right adapter for the power feed here.

So I jumped right in -- helped get him plugged in hooked up his water hose -- he was just filling his water tank but wasn’t going to hook up for the night.

His name was John and he is from Indiana and a very nice fellow!  He and his wife were heading back home to Indiana from a month long trip through the southeast.  

So we chatted for a while -- I found out that he was a Banjo player and that they had traveled extensively.  His little map on the RV was full!

I shared with him that we were full timers. 

From that moment on it was like we had known each other forever.  He started sharing stories from the road -- told me that we were in for a great time.  He also saw the kids and said  “Those boys are going to really enjoy this and get an education like no other.”

We talked for a little while longer then went back to our respective homes.

About an hour later I hear a knock on the door and it was John.

Seems he sells products for Watkins -- he had some goodies for us.  Yeah!

He said that seldom had he met anyone that was so helpful and wanted to reward the kindness. What a nice thing to say?  I was a little speechless.

I tried to pay him but he wouldn’t have it.

What a great encounter!

I want to make mention of the people that have signed up as Followers on our blog.  We are so appreciative of you all doing that!

For one thing we now know who is coming to the site and the other is -- in your profiles we have found your blogs -- and what a treat we have found.  The stories, pictures and great writing are so enjoyable!

I have said it before but if you haven’t checked out some of the blogs owned by some of the followers here -- you are really missing out!

The emails we got yesterday and comments really meant a lot to us.

Tomorrow I take Nanette’s SUV to Toyota to engage in what I anticipate will be somewhat of a battle to get the Valve Stem Seals replaced.

Also...to answer...not just a few emails...No, it has not escaped me that I didn’t put any information about me on the blog yet.  smile_wink

So tomorrow I will do so. 

Oh and I have a little story to share that happened at the same time my brother and Trigger headed off into the Wild Blue Yonder! 

It has to do with watermelons. a horse named Pepper, the local police and me getting launched this time!  Uh-huh -- it was quite an event!

That is it for today!

Thank you for stopping by and again for all the comments and emails over the last few days!

Ken and Nanette

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Second Post -- Take A Look At This!

Al of Traveling With The Bayfield Bunch posted within his blog today some thoughts on the subject of Full Timing. A subject that I also posted about today and yesterday.

It is well worth reading! 

I think Al has really captured some things that everyone needs to consider as they look toward full timing. 

Great job Al!

You can find it here: Travel With The Bayfield Bunch

Ken

Very Windy and Cold...Thoughts on Full Timing...Self Inflicted Pain.

This is what I wanted to be doing today!

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But this is what I ended up doing!

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It was very windy and cold today here!

Yesterday I posted about an email we received and my answers to it.  There were a LOT of emails received in response to what I posted. 

There are also some very good comments that were left on the post.  If you didn’t read them you may want to scroll down and take a look.

I wanted to expand just a little on what I wrote yesterday.

Times right now are hard on families.  Whether unemployed or concerned about losing their job -- the stress levels seem to be elevated. 

Someone made a comment about the person that wrote us being angry.  I believe that is true. 

Today we have demonstrators here in Kentucky outside the office of Jim Bunning the Senator from Kentucky that has blocked the Unemployment Compensation Extension.  There were bomb threats made yesterday. There was anger there for sure.

The news reports that up to 200,000 people per week would receive no further money as times goes on if the Bill isn’t passed.

There is anger on the internet -- one side angry that the money had been held up -- and the other side saying people are just sitting back and taking the free ride.

Anger -- Yes.

One of the reasons we decided to do what we are doing was to disconnect ourselves -- as much as possible from the world dictating the terms in regard to how we are going to live.

We still have to pay our bills -- and we still need to work to pay those bills for now. 

However, there is a freedom that has come to us in our new way of living.  We are mobile -- we can choose where we work and where we choose to live.  We are more focused on who we are than what we have.

I saw a post on another blog today -- where a writer really went off on the owner of the blog -- basically chastising them for their lifestyle.  The reader said that it must be nice to have all the money you need and live on the beach.  I am paraphrasing of course

It occurred to me that perhaps these negative comments are more a sign of the times than an indictment of living full time in an RV. 

There are people in the campground where we are located that have very little -- but they are happy. 

They have their life right where they want it to be.  They are living life on their terms.

Perhaps these days a lot of people are wanting the same thing. 

I am sure most of us that have made the transition and those that are in the process understand what it takes to get here.

One of the “moments of truth” for many is when you start getting rid of your possessions. 

Going through all that stuff -- some that has memories attached to it -- some that bring about unexpected emotions as those memories are resurrected.

It was not easy for us.  We had to have faith. 

We had people that encouraged us at times when we just wanted to give up and stay right where we were. 

They didn’t all give us a rosy picture -- what they did give us was an accurate picture of an alternative lifestyle.

We were told that this lifestyle would be what we made of it .  No more and no less.

I think there is a lot or introspection underway right now in our country. 

Introspection concerning priorities -- self reliance -- the definition of happiness -- and control.

Where all this will lead is anyone’s guess -- but my opinion is -- it is a good thing.

I read once that the recipe for perpetual ignorance is to never challenge your own beliefs or your own opinions. 

Maybe this is the time -- for us as a country -- to do exactly that.

I know we did -- and we ended up in a very different place then we have been for many years. 

Perhaps others will find alternatives to what they are experiencing now. 

I am not in any way saying the only answer is to do what we have done.  This is not for everyone.

However, asking the questions as to what you really want in life and how you might get it is as fair a question as one may ask today.

If it ends up to be the silver lining in our current economic situation -- then maybe -- just maybe -- we may find ourselves much better off in the end.

I think what has happened to some extent is the American Dream has been snatched away for some.  Perhaps the dream needs to change.

I wrote in an earlier post about moments in time becoming more pronounced for us now. 

I suppose one can decide what those moments are going to be -- ones that are made up of the twin thieves of happiness -- regret and worry -- or moments of what could be and seeing what really matters in this life.

So let me talk about Nanette for a brief moment. 

Nanette has this “thing” she does...

She had many “things” that she does but this is one I TOLD her I would put into the blog today...

This thing is...when I hurt myself (not bad of course) but when I do something and I say Ouch!...

She laughs!

Kind of like this...

hillbilly_chic_laughing_lw

Well not exactly like that -- but you get the idea.

Now I ask you -- all of our sympathetic -- empathetic -- and other “theitc” readers.

Why?

What is it about my self inflicted pain that make her so merry?

Just the other night -- as we were getting ready to go to sleep -- I misjudged the exact distance between the back of my head and the wall behind our bed.

I hit my head with a loud “Thump”.  I said ouch! 

She...Laughed!

No -- “Honey are you alright?”  or  “I am sorry you hurt yourself.”  ...nothing like that at all. 

Just...laughing.

This isn’t the first time by far...I could go on and on about the times I have done something to myself and she found it funny.

If you have an answer to this strange phenomenon I would sure like to hear it!

Ken and Nanette

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

An Email That Caused Me To Really Think...and...The Crows!

Quickly I want to tell those of you that are asking for pictures -- I am going to start carrying my camera with me everywhere I go.

That seems to be my problem -- it isn’t that there aren’t things to take great pictures of -- it is that I don’t have my camera when I really need it!

An Email that caused me to think...

As we have told you we have been getting some great emails from our readers.

Early this morning as I was going through emails I opened one that really got my attention. 

This email was from a reader that has been following us since the days we started our post on the RV-Dreams Forum.  They had read all of our posts there and then followed us here.  They continue to read our blog and will be reading what I write here.

The email had to do with the full timing lifestyle and a problem they have with the way it is portrayed.

I took their comments very seriously -- read the email many times -- and thought about what was being said -- went outside and paced a while and thought some more.

I wrote them and asked if they would mind if I answered them on our blog.  They said they would like that since that way all of our readers would see it.

The comments were not aimed at our blog only -- but comments derived from reading a number of sources -- blogs, forums, and discussion boards on the internet.

I want to say before I go further that the email was not a full broadside rant designed only to evoke anger but rather a very well thought out series of questions.  Questions designed to understand some things that have been written about this life style.

These are my opinions only...and remember we have only been full timing for exactly 2 months as of the 28th of February.

Living Full Time in Our RV.... 

1) Is this lifestyle the utopia that so many people say it is?

This life style from our perspective is not utopia. 

It comes with the same challenges that we had before we divested ourselves of our stuff less the house and the upkeep of it -- although upkeep of our RV continues and in some cases is more work.

While it may be a form of escapism it is not a way to escape life’s challenges -- they still come.

2) Do you feel it is the best thing to do for your children? (Bringing them into this lifestyle) And what about their education?

Bringing children into this lifestyle in our opinion depends a great deal on the children, their dispositions, the relationship they have with the parent(s), and the kind of family interaction that exists.

These things need to be explored in great depth before making the decision.

Education of the children in our case is homeschooling.  There are entire websites devoted to this and it is a subject all its own. From our personal experience and based on our relationships with other homeschooling parents -- it is not for everyone. 

Again, there is a lot of conversation on this issue on the internet.

3) Why do so few talk about the bad things that they are going through while in this lifestyle? Are they trying to paint a rosy picture only to support their decision?

As I said before life’s challenges still come.  We have read recently of people that are being forced to come off the road.  Due to family issues, health issues and financial issues.  There are others that have simply decided it is not for them.

I am not sure we would share every bad thing that happens to us either.  Some things are simply too personal and perhaps painful to just throw out there.

Having said that -- just this morning I read some blogs that were heartbreaking -- and the writer shared the details of what they were going through.

I think this is a very personal decision on the part of the writer.

Are there some that paint a prettier picture than it is -- well knowing all the kinds of people in this world I am sure there are.

4) We are struggling like never before.  We have both been out of work for over a year.  We have a 5th Wheel sitting in the backyard.  If we move into it the reason will be to keep a roof over our head not to travel.  Why don’t we see more people in this situation? It looks like only the people that are retired and drawing plenty of money are writing about it.

We are aware of couples and families that have moved into this lifestyle out of need and even desperation opposed to simply wanting to travel.

The economy and job situation is the worst I have ever seen in my lifetime.  There are many people that are drawing unemployment for the first time in their working life -- for some this is in the 30 - 40 year range of time.

Is this lifestyle supposed to be THE answer to all of this?  In my opinion, absolutely not.  There are other answers out there.

Regarding those with retirement accounts that pay them all the money that need -- we are seeing that people that have retired are having their retirement payout amounts reduced. 

Some are losing insurance that they had counted upon.  in addition, the cost of living continues to rise for many.

Many are working while on the road.  This is called Workamping. We ourselves are pursuing this since we are not retired.

From what we see there are many that write about their financial struggles. 

I have seen many that have an attitude that they will find a way to get through it.

Perhaps this confidence is being misinterpreted as not talking about it.  The challenges are there they just choose how they will react to them.

5) Isn’t this just a Fad of sorts?

As you know we are very new to this.  If it is a Fad then it has been a Fad for a few years at least.  There are people that have been on the road for many years.  Perhaps the internet has simply made it more visible.

6) Aren’t you worried about providing for your family?

Of course it is something I know is an imperative.  Do I worry about it?  I do not.worry about it by my definition.  What I do is to do the things required to make sure they are provided for. 

This is not just monetarily but also in other ways.  I also want them to be happy.  For each, that is a different thing and not something I define but rather that they do.  I want them to find enjoyment in this lifestyle and to experience all that life has to give. 

I also feel that providing an environment that they can grow in and find what makes them happy is important. 

What a better way to do that than show them as much of this world as I can?

That is it...

Crows....

Crows are loud!

A LOT of Crows are VERY loud!

We have a lot of crows around our campground. 

Every day they seem to do the same thing.

They awaken -- go sit on the bridge for a while -- then decide to sit in the trees directly above our bedroom and “talk” to us. 

Why do they do this? 

Why over OUR bedroom?

I am not sure of these answers but they make terrible alarm clocks....

...and there is no snooze button!!!

Ken and Nanette

Monday, March 1, 2010

Slow Sunday...Getting Ready To Roll...and A Boat On The River...

It was a very relaxing day today. 

It is still cold and overcast here.  It was a good day to stay in and watch some TV. 

Watched the Olympics -- Canada defeated the US in Hockey 3-2 in overtime -- great game though! Both teams played their hearts out -- couldn’t have asked for more from either team.

I am ready for spring to show up any time now.  Or to go where Spring is.

We are starting to make sure everything is ready to go should we get a position and need to move quickly. 

Today I checked out our motorhome’s towing systems. 

We have a Falcon 2 Hitch and a Roadmaster Brakemaster braking system on our motorhome. 

The hitch is ready to go but there are some small components missing on the Brakemaster System. 

The pieces we need were found by the previous owners.  They are some great people. I contacted them today to arrange for picking up the components they found in storage.

I am probably going overboard checking so many things out but we anticipate having relatively short notice once we get a position, to get there. 

Plus I am bored!

So I was watching TV and heard a strange noise outside.

I looked outside the window only to see a bass boat going up the river. 

The two guys in the boat were in what looked like Arctic Gear -- covered from head to toe.  It is February for goodness sakes but up the river they went wide open.

I must admit I kind of wished I could have been out there doing some fishing.

Like I said -- I am REALLY ready for spring to get here!

I have noticed over the last few days some other blog writers have been addressing why they write blogs.  I think that is a very good question.

We never really expected to start a blog but we were convinced to do so.  Now that we are doing it I find it very enjoyable.  So to all of you that suggested it -- Thank you!

I expect that as time passes and we go back and read our posts we will find it interesting to look back and remember what we went through.  

As we get on the road I can’t imagine what kinds of adventures we will get ourselves into.  But that is why we are doing this anyway.  To experience everything we can in life.

So why do people write blogs?

I found a lot of the answers by the other bloggers to be very similar.  I wonder if they feel the same way I do when I am writing?

Well I know today is a short post but as I said it was a very slow day -- and sometimes we need those kinds of days!

So now Nanette and I are watching a movie and the kids are settling down for the night.

It has been a good day -- and we really love this lifestyle!!!

Ken and Nanette

Sunday, February 28, 2010

I Won A Gold Medal! - In Laziness and The Fishing Trip...

Yep!  A Gold Medal in Laziness today.  I guess I wore myself out yesterday working on that wiring problem.

I did some work on our Blog Site today though -- installed a program that automatically pushes our blog to our Facebook account.  It does it automatically so if I don’t update our blog then the same post will show up a second time.  No Pressure with that... smile_omg

I also installed some link tracking tools -- it is kind of neat to know what other sites link to yours.  Not that it means anything. 

Although I will tell you the ones that mean a lot to us and that is when some of the other bloggers list our site on theirs.  That is very cool -- especially with the talent that is out there and they link to us.  We like that -- it makes us feel good.

We have the best followers on our blog -- I got some great emails yesterday.  So complimentary and interesting -- we absolutely enjoy getting emails and comments!  You all are simply the best!

You know this blogging thing is really fun!

Besides the internet stuff I did nothing else.  Nanette and the boys did some laundry and now I smell supper cooking.  I also suspect there is a little surprise for dessert -- they are hiding it from me.

That is ALWAYS a really good sign!

So Nanette told me to share a story with you that I told her about a long time ago..so here goes.

Very close to where I grew up is a river.  It is called Big River.  Is isn’t really that big but it is beautiful.

My dad loved to fish  and hunt both of which I did with him many times.  Well this story involves one of those fishing trips.

As you may have picked up on -- my dad got frustrated easily sometimes and when he would get frustrated with me I always knew it -- without doubt.

I loved to fish with him but his impatience and frustrations were something I had to contend with.

So he decided to go fishing and asked me to come along -- I agreed.  He decided to take the 16 foot aluminum boat we had with a 15 horsepower outboard motor.  Off to the river we go -- get the boat unloaded -- he parks the truck while I wait holding the boat at the shore.

We both get into the boat and he tries to start the motor -- and tries -- and tries...it doesn’t start.

At this point -- “Mr. Frustration” and “Mr. Impatience” climb into the boat and sat right next to me.  smile_thinking

My dad decided at this point we didn’t need a motor anyway! 

We would just use paddles.

Now I should tell you that I had not used a paddle much.  I was never trained on using a paddle....and apparently I did not have any semblance the dexterity required to use one.

But I tried -- the problem was I was always on the wrong side of the boat.

I was in the front of the boat with my back to my dad so I had no idea which side he was paddling on anyway.

We went down the river sideways with my dad trying to offset my mad paddling on one side then the other of the boat -- he was not successful. 

He got frustrated with me -- and told me so.

When my dad hit is limit with me he would call me “Boy!”.

I lost count of the times he called me that on this day.

So I did what I always did -- I just kept doing what I WAS doing -- only harder!

The river we were on had trees hanging low over both sides of it -- my dad wanted to go down the middle of the river but I was successful in keeping him from doing that -- actually I over-achieved at this.

So we were going under the trees on one side of the river then the other. I felt the boat rocking for some reason but didn't look back to see why.

What happened next -- I will NEVER forget -- it plays out in my mind in slow motion just like it did that day.

I bet you are thinking my dad fell in the water -- oh if that would have been all that happened I wouldn’t be sharing this you.

Back to the rocking...

The rocking got my attention to the extent I turned around to see what was going on.

As I did I see my dad standing up in the boat with his paddle in his hands.

He was not holding it like you would hold a paddle but more like Babe Ruth getting ready to hit one out of the park.

Apparently, in my mind, he had hit his limit with me and I was about to really get it.

He then raised the paddle up just like a baseball bat and swung it right at my head!!!

At my head!!!

But he didn’t hit me in the head.

Instead what he DID hit was a 3 foot long Water Moccasin that was hanging down from a tree branch directly over my head.

When I say directly over my head it was about a foot above my head.

Water Moccasin

This is what a Water Moccasin or Cottonmouth Snake Looks Like

As I dove for the bottom of the boat -- still thinking my little life was about to come to an end -- the paddle made contact with the snake.

The snake didn’t fly through the air but instead got wrapped around the paddle. 

The real problem was the paddle was still in my dad’s hands!

The paddle had been transformed into a first class Water Moccasin Catcher!

Now this was not at all what my dad had in mind!

The next thing I saw was the paddle -- snake and all -- being launched and flying through the air -- at high velocity -- heading out into the middle of the river.

We never saw that paddle again -- but it did fix one problem that we had.

My dad was now able to paddle the boat just like he wanted it paddled -- and he got to do it all by himself!

It took me about an hour to get my heart rate back to normal...my dad however...just went on with the fishing like nothing ever happened.

So that is my fishing story!

Thank you for stopping by!

Ken and Nanette