Travel

For those of you interested Only in TRAVEL, I (Jack) wrote the blog between March 2010 and October 2010 during our travels west. We saw the most beautiful places and had the best time in our big truck and little trailer. See Blog Archive below.

Nov 16, 2010

Teresa and "The Girls" at Reed

Shortly before Teresa, Molly, and Jazz arrived, Gail called to say that she, Paul, and Mac weren't going to make it. What a disappointment. Unfortunately, Lady, their motorhome, introduced herself to a low pole lying in wait for the right fender.

Nancy got up early in the morning. She wanted to be up at the office as soon as it opened to get tags for Teresa and Gail and Paul. It was cold, but Nancy went over very early to take a shower because she needed to run into town to get mustard, and she wanted to be back in time for arrivals. Well, I waited on her bed as I always do, and back she came muttering away. Evidently, not only was it cold, the water was ice cold-NO HOT WATER. She braved it and came back in shivering. When she got to the office, she told the lady and she called it in over the walkie talkie and the man said "Roger. I'll get right on it". Too late for Nancy. She got a great spot for Gail and Paul right across the way, and Teresa was right next door to us in a back in site-really almost a buddy site. I couldn't wait until they got here, and kept a watch for them.

We went to the store and got back in time to see Teresa pull in, but by that time, Gail had called to deliver her news.
Teresa pondering why her spare tire is crooked. Molly waiting patiently.
We all really relaxed most of the time while Teresa and the Girls were here, except for our walks. The weather was warm, and the bugs were a pain up until it was time for a campfire at night.

How could I forget? One afternoon, we were all lounging around when Teresa spotted an Eagle. Nancy loves Eagles so she ran to the car for her binoculars and they took turns watching it. There were lots of birds of prey in the park. Nancy and Teresa were wondering whether that was the reason why there were virtually no song birds until one lone, tiny little yellow bird landed on a branch behind their campsites. Teresa has an ap on her iPhone that describes birds and plays the different songs that each bird sings. It literally called some birds toward us. Soon after the little yellow bird came, Teresa spotted a mockingbird. When she played the sound of crows, they started flying in close by. Interesting.
Trail Behind Our Campsites

Look at Molly's Face. You can tell that she's had it with "posing".
Teresa brought shiny silver car sun shields that another friend, Janis, had used at Bandy Creek when they camped there. They worked very nicely. Teresa was nice enough to get two for Gail and Paul, too. All was fairly quiet until a spark flew up and landed on Teresa's chair and Nancy laughed like a fool because it occurred to her that the shields might not be flame retardant! She could just envision a "swoosh"! When she could finally talk and tell Teresa, they both laughed.

I was so happy to see the girls. I would forget myself every now and then with Molly, and try to "herd" her like I used to herd Lizzie. Molly doesn't stand for any nonsense, though, but I'm a lover not a fighter so I backed off quickly. I didn't have trouble remembering not to try it with Jazz because she's a different color than Molly and Lizzie. I love those girls.

Poor Molly was investigating tortoise holes on one of our walks and she got a burr on her foot and on her mouth. She came running over to Teresa as if to say, "Mama, please fix me. I hurt myself." Both the girls know how to speak very quietly to Teresa, and she understands what they are saying. Nancy understand me, too, but I'm not as quiet as they are, but then Nancy isn't as quiet as Teresa. Hmmm. Interesting.
Molly By Golly Miss Molly
Sweet Jazz
After the girls went to bed at night, I stayed out by the fire with Nancy and Teresa. I was cold and wanted to go in, but I didn't want to go in without Nancy so I tried to drive them nuts by whining (I almost succeeded). I tried my best to annoy them. By the second night, I went in and I think I made it for about 20 minutes. Then, the last night, Nancy bundled me up in a blanket by the fire (about time) and I slept until the fire was out and the ladies went in. She should have taken a picture, but oh, no--never when I'm being good.

The girls stayed in their trailer and I stayed in the truck when Teresa and Nancy went to the Catfish House for dinner the first night. Nancy didn't care for what she had, but Teresa said hers was delicious. For lunches and other dinners, they just brought what they had to the table to eat together. One night, however, they made a "gourmet" hotdog dinner. Now, I've been to a lot of the WAC meets and I see other ladies not only make meals for a large group, but they have FLOWERS AND CANDLES as center pieces. When they cooked, everything was organized. These two--OY YI YI! No table cloth. Mass confusion getting the beans and corn out and it was cold anyway upon arrival from our camper AND their center piece was the bag of garbage they were using as they were "preparing" to eat. They thought it was so funny once they realized that it was there and then they got really silly about it--especially when they thought about the fancy tables that the other WACs set. Hard to believe that us pups are the ones that aren't allowed in restaurants! Well, they said it's their style of camping and I think they're actually going to stick to that story.

It was mostly Nancy's fault because when we traveled out west, she did away with anything unnecessary-like the mat to keep dirt out of the trailer. She cleaned the whole place, yesterday, and after the rain last night it didn't take any time at all to drag a beach load of sand in. It poured buckets last night. Fortunately, drying takes place pretty quickly in sandy areas.

I keep looking over for Molly and Jazz, wishing they were still here.  It's been overcast all day, but at least I got to go on another trail that was part of the system that we walked with Molly and Jazz. And, of course, we walked around the campground and several times on the trail behind the campground whenever the rain stopped. We didn't hear any wind last night, but there were some pretty big limbs down across the trails.

Tomorrow we head home. We hate to leave, but all good things come to an end.

Nov 10, 2010

Reed Bingham State Park / Moultrie-Back to Camping

Nancy and I decided to camp in Reed Bingham so we could camp with our friends, Miss Teresa, Jazz, and Molly. I think it's been over a year since we've seen them so we're really excited. Miss Gail and Mr. Paul are going to meet us here, too, so we are very happy and excited. We are camped in the area we were camped in last time, and hoping that no one gets the spots around us. Two trailers have left since we've been here, so maybe we'll luck out.
Nancy says I'm a Handsome Boy.
The day started out with a great walk early this morning. Nancy didn't take pictures of the trail because she wanted to enjoy the walk, too. It was nice and cool and the birds were singing away and NO bugs! Well, let me rephrase that, the crows were making that noise they make. We haven't seen a buzzard, yet.

When we got back, this guy came walking across the road into our campsite. At first, Nancy thought it was an armadillo because he was moving pretty fast. We thought about naming him, but then we figured-nature's creatures shouldn't have names unless they're tame like me.

We were on our way to get fire wood and to go see the town of Moultrie. Nancy snapped a couple of pictures of the campground before we left.


They are already putting up Christmas decorations. The courthouse was very pretty. Nancy said she thinks Rich was in every courthouse in the state of Georgia when he did all those years of traveling. Many of the Boards of Education are located in the county seat. We walked all around the town. You can see how organized they are by the piles of lights. 








Well, Nancy's not very happy because she's having trouble with the blog. We'll get this over quickly and head out for a walk to cool off (if you know what I mean). We saw many beautiful homes on our walk. This one was turned into a bed and breakfast.


This magnolia tree was on the courthouse grounds. It was magnificent. Can you imagine that it was planted in 1845?


On the way to and from Moultrie we saw cotton fields, ponds, farms that were growing collard greens, and an air boat! We came back through another entrance of the park. Nancy will take more pictures, tomorrow. This bridge was pretty. The last time we were here the whole area was flooded.

While we were out, Nancy left me in the truck with the engine running so that I could keep cool, and ran into the grocery store to pick up some hot dogs. Unlike where we live, she couldn't get cold slaw and potato salad all prepared. We got all the way home and DOH-no mustard, relish, or onion. Tomorrow will be a busy morning. Nancy wants to go over for a shower, then go get the tags for the other two sites, and then run up to the store (about 8 miles) AND walk me (I think that should go first, don't you?)

Oct 30, 2010

Gearing Up

We've been home for a little over a month, now. I was glad to see Susie, but to be honest Nancy and I were ready to get out of Dodge, again, as soon as we got back. Too hot. Too much traffic. We miss roaming around. Nancy walks me every day, and I love it, but it's just not the same. We are lucky to have the nature center not too far away. I listen for "The View" music, and then I know it's time to go.

Susie had cleaned our whole house as a surprise for when we arrived home, and she had a welcome home party. It was good to see everyone. I have to see if anyone took pictures. Then I can show you how good looking everyone is-I need to find recent pictures, though.

Susie walks me, too. Last week, though, she was very sick with Salmonella poisoning, so she wasn't up to it, then. Nancy and I stayed over at her house because we were worried. I did get to walk in her neighborhood a couple of times. Most of the time, though, I spent keeping an eye on Susie while I was in her bed-she has the greatest bed! She took me for a little walk tonight, and it's nice to be out with her, again.

The other night I woke Nancy because I got so excited that I was barking very loud. Why I hardly knew myself because I sounded so ferocious. She got up thinking someone was in the house, but it was even better than that! There were four deer right outside our window! I wonder where they hide during the day.

A couple of weeks ago, Nancy, Susan, and I took a ride down to Whistle Stop on one of Susie's day's off. Nancy had been to the cafe' the last time we camped at High Falls State Park, but we didn't see the place where the kids in the movie "Fried Green Tomatoes" walked along the dam just before the girl's hat blew off and the boy got stuck on the tracks and lost his arm when the train ran it over trying to catch it. Nancy thinks everyone should see this movie. I practically know it by heart.
Susie and Me Walking Near Whistle Stop
Like an Infinity Pool.
From the Other Side
Whistle Stop Cafe and the Town from Other Side of the Tracks
Nancy went to dinner with two of my very best friends, Miss Martha and Mr. James. They are Lisa's Mom and Dad. They don't let me in the restaurants even in my home town, but Miss Martha treats me like a real friend. She emails me, sends me cards, and is very good to Nancy. Out of everyone we know, Nancy says Miss Martha always knew what to say and what not to say during sad times.
Miss Martha and Mr. James
Nancy took the trailer in to Wild Willy's for some maintenance and discovered that we lost the stove, oven, etc., because they were never bolted down. They missed the last step on the assembly line and the people who checked out the camper didn't notice. No wonder they closed down. Wilder, yet, the air conditioner was never bolted to the trailer. How did we keep it on the roof? We put a lot of miles on camping in the east and 22K miles (on the trailer) going west! Willy and Nancy thought that was very funny. Willy's helper was busy playing with me out in the lot, but we could hear them laughing. We had to leave the trailer there for a week. We met John and Lisa, for dinner, on the way home, so that was a really nice surprise.

Willy (I guess that's his name) checked the roof, lubed the wheels (Nancy said she thinks that's what it's called), checked and caulked the roof, fixed the lock on the cargo door, fixed the electrical plug, and replaced both tail light units. We hope this will work because Nancy changed bulbs almost as often as she changed socks on the trip (Jack, quit exaggerating). Now, Nancy has to wash and wax it, and I won't even discuss the truck-I'm embarrassed to ride in it. Nancy said she's going to get it detailed. Rani's Mom, Miss Marie, took a ride with us when we picked it up. She lives in Utah, but we didn't know she was in town so we didn't get to spend a lot of time, together. We'll visit her the next time we go west because Nancy really wants to see Flaming Gorge and Centennial this time.

I'm a little out of practice writing a blog, but we like having the book from our last trip to look through and read about and relive our adventures. Teddy's human suggested that Nancy make her blog into a book. I got a card from Miss Martha which made me very happy. I also got a card from Miss Janis. I put them both in my book. Aunt Dorothy thought I "wrote" a book-I don't think she really knows what a blog is.

Nancy and I are hoping to be able to head out west, again, in the spring; maybe March. Aunt Marilyn and Susie will meet us in Reno, this time. That's the plan, for now.  Aunt Dorothy asked me if Susie could fly out, but she doesn't know about Aunt Marilyn. She will be SO surprised.

In the meantime, I decided to start this blog because we're going camping in about two weeks. We're going to meet Miss T., Jazz, and Molly (Yippee! Haven't seen them in ages) and Gail, Paul, and Mac down at Reed Bingham. Everyone has to be home before we do, so we're thinking of going to see our friend, Bama Deb, in Gulf Shores.

Last Sunday, Nancy went to Miss Barbara's daughter's wedding. What a celebration it was. I don't believe I've ever seen so many happy people in one place.
Beautiful Barbara and Adorable Chloe-think she loves her grandbaby?

To quote Lauren, "I BE MARRIED!" What a beautiful couple. When I can get more pictures, I'll post them. I had to "steal" this one from Facebook.
Nancy drove Susan's car because Susan couldn't go and Nancy didn't want to get my hair all over her. It's the first time Nancy's driven a car since getting the truck, and she said she had forgotten how smooth the ride was. We bounce all over the place in the truck, but we like it, anyway. Well, I got off track, but Nancy was telling me that she met Joanne and Bill (Nancy and Rich's best friends when they were all young and full of the old Harry), so that made the wedding even more perfect to her. Actually, Nancy said she thinks they're still full of the old Harry.
Nancy says they haven't changed a bit. It was so good to see them and spend time, together.
This was sort of a practice post-to set up the blog. We'll tweak it in the coming weeks.

Oct 10, 2010

Okay

So, I have the book in its sloppy form. Now is the time to go back through and correct some of the bloopers. I don't have to rush, and I can do it at my leisure. If you're reading about our adventure for the first time, I hope you'll read in reverse order. Neither Nancy nor I know how to reverse the blog.

Sep 21, 2010

Time to Get Up

(Jack, it's time to get up. We're going home. Vacation is over.)
 (C'mon, now sleepy head...)


Leave me alone. I'm tired.
 
(I know, so am I, but we have to get ready.)


You get ready. Call me when it's time for my walk. I'm tired, I tell ya! Don't make me cranky.


(Okay, 5 more minutes)
Leave me alone, already. I'm not listening. I'm going back to sleep. 

Sep 20, 2010

Where is Jack, Day 159?

This is our last night of camping on this trip. It's hard to believe. Time has flown by. It's sort of bittersweet. We're anxious to see the humans we love, but we hate Atlanta, the midwest (except for the Mississippi), and the east.

Nancy had a difficult drive, today. Lots of traffic at 70 mph. There was an accident in Nashville which caused a back up, then let all the trucks and cars go at one time. When we first started out this morning, Nancy was sleepy. So, we stopped at a rest stop, she walked me and got a coke out of the trailer to see if the caffeine would help. She was determined to get as close to Atlanta as possible. No sense in wasting more than one night's rate at a campground since we are so close. Gas got more expensive after Kentucky.

The people at this campground are very nice. They came out to meet me, gave me treats, and told Nancy that they had a nature trail I might like. I wonder how they knew? Nancy pulled into the site, and before she did anything, she took me on the trail. I loved every minute, but I could tell that the heat was getting to her. When we got back from our walk, I stayed outside with her while she dumped the tanks. I love to stay outside the camper and lay around watching things so she let me stay as long as I wanted. It was almost dark when she called me in. I'm tired, too, so I jumped up on my bed and I'm ready to sleep.

Nancy misses her sweatshirt weather and wide open spaces, the mountains, the rivers, the lakes, and the forests, and of course, the coast in Oregon. The only reason we're back here is family and friends. I can't wait to see Susie. Nancy said she keeps saying that she's going to take me for a lot of walks.

We've had quite an adventure, Nancy and me. We were always close, but we are really close now. We're glad we got to spend this time, together. We saw so many wonderful places, met a lot of people, and it was nice to have something to occupy our minds all the time. Rich and Lizzie were never far from our thoughts. There were so many things we wished they had seen with us. I thought about Lizzie every time I went for a walk, but mostly when there was a stream. She would have loved it here. There's a lake. I know where Lizzie would have been. I don't like swimming, as much, without Lizzie. Nancy said she finds it so hard to believe that Rich never knew about the truck and trailer. She wonders if he would have enjoyed driving it. She knows, for sure, that it would have been a lot cleaner!! She also knows that he would not have been happy in the trailer. He liked the comforts of home when he traveled, and a little space to move around in, especially the shower. I always knew what she was thinking when we were watching a particularly beautiful sunset, sitting by the ocean, and all the beautiful things that are the west.

The trailer needs so many things fixed, at this point. Nancy said, we're better off than she thought we would be. She expected to be towing just four wheels back into Atlanta. (Written after returning home): Nancy and I took the trailer up to Wild Willie's, a(n) RV fixit place a couple of months after being at home. Our friend, Marie, went with us. We thought we were going to be able to show her around Dahlonega, but we ran out of time. While we were there, one man took me out in back and played with me while another man went over the list of things that Nancy wanted checked or fixed. They all got hysterical when they discovered that the air conditioner had never been screwed/bolted onto the roof on the trailer, neither was the oven door and a few other things. They were amazed that we had been all the way out to the west coast over mountains and bumpy roads and hadn't lost the air conditioner (especially). The reason Nancy was having it checked was because when she was camping near her friend, Patricia, it rained very hard and it poured in through the A/C. Well, duh, that's because it was moved over 5 inches on the roof! That kind of tells you what great weather we had on our trip.  Funnier still, is that Nancy, Lizzie, and I had made many trips in the trailer-as far away as Virginia and West Virginia. How lucky were we!! Nancy said, "I hope Rich and Lizzie ducked when we went under low branches and tunnels!" I really hope we get to go out west, again.

We wonder how we're going to feel about a big house. Ugh, says Nancy, the dust will be piled up. But, she'll have her own shower, her washing machine and dryer, her couch, and the TV. Back to reality.

It's been fun telling you, who have read my blog, about our trip. Thinking back, there are so many things I didn't write about because we filled the days with so much that I would have had to have written a book, and I almost always wrote at night when I was ready for sleep, like I am now. Goodnight to all.

(Some how I'm missing either part of a post or a whole day. We met Patricia, a friend of ours, near St. Louis, and she and Nancy went to lunch. We had planned to spend the day with her and Teddy (my friend), but it was raining so hard that the campground was flooded. Nancy and Patricia decided that a little bit of time was better than no time. Unfortunately, I didn't get to see Teddy.


Nancy thought, a few months back, that she would come down through Bandy Creek on the way home, but it didn't shake out that way. It would have been nice to see all the WACs we know, and to meet the new ones. Then, she thought maybe she could take a ride back up, but we hit a truck tire south of Chattanooga on I75, and so the trailer needs to go in to get checked, and for work. It should have been in shortly after arriving home, but we've been in somewhat of a funk since getting home, and Nancy hasn't had much ambition to do anything.)

Sep 16, 2010

Where is Jack, Day 158

We got up early and took a walk, then went to my field. It took Nancy a little longer to hitch up, but we were on our way at 10:30. Nancy couldn't decide the best route home so she decided to let the GPS surprise us. She set it to "No Highways" and put our home address in.

We are in St. Joseph's Missouri. We are very tired. The drive, today, was not as boring as our drive through Nebraska. It may be we just didn't take the right roads to see the more beautiful parts of Nebraska. The drive through Kansas was much more interesting-not spectacular, but somewhat interesting. We just crossed the Missouri River. The campground we're in can hardly be called a campground, but there are restaurants, etc., nearby. The object, at this point, is just to get home as quickly as possible without going on interstates. We'll most likely stay two nights every time we stop--that way we can explore a little and rest in between hitching and unhitching.

No pictures, today. Maybe tomorrow. This is Pony Express country. We may take a ride back to Troy to get a picture of a very pretty sculpture we saw on the move. Obviously, that didn't happen.

Where is Jack, Day 158

We got up early and took a walk, then went to my field. It took Nancy a little longer to hitch up, but we were on our way at 10:30. Nancy couldn't decide the best route home so she decided to let the GPS surprise us. She set it to "No Highways" and put our home address in.

We are in St. Joseph's Missouri. We are very tired. The drive, today, was not as boring as our drive through Nebraska. It may be we just didn't take the right roads to see the more beautiful parts of Nebraska. The drive through Kansas was much more interesting-not spectacular, but somewhat interesting. We just crossed the Missouri River. The campground we're in can hardly be called a campground, but there are restaurants, etc., nearby. The object, at this point, is just to get home as quickly as possible without going on interstates. We'll most likely stay two nights every time we stop--that way we can explore a little and rest in between hitching and unhitching.

No pictures, today. Maybe tomorrow. This is Pony Express country. We may take a ride back to Troy to get a picture of a very pretty sculpture we saw on the move. Obviously, that didn't happen.

Sep 15, 2010

Where is Jack, Day 157

We had a very bad windstorm here last night. We were okay, but there was damage to the fairground nearby and crops were destroyed. There was strange sounding thunder and a little lightning, but it was mostly wind-big wind! We were rockin' and rollin'. The news said, today, that it was unusual to have such high winds without accompanying rain. We decided to play it safe and stay another day because the wind was still gusting. It was recorded at 60 mph and gusting where we are.

I wanted to get out of the trailer so I went to the door and cried. I was scared. Nancy opened the door and said, "You have your choice. You want to go out there or stay in here." I got up in her bed. Once I realized that she wasn't scared, I was okay. She actually went to sleep and would wake up when we really got a blast. It seemed like it went on all night.

Nancy took me to the field behind the campground, today, to play, and she stepped in a gopher hole and hurt her knee. Then she reached up to wash the outside of the windows on the trailer and pulled a muscle in her chest and shoulder. Just wasn't her day, but she says it's nothing some Aleve can't fix. She's going to wait to hitch up in the morning-that way she can rest it.

Nancy forgot to get water when she was in the supermarket so we had to do that, and get gas in the truck so we can leave, tomorrow. We don't know where we're going, yet. Severe thunderstorm warnings just scrolled across the TV. Nancy said, maybe that's what's bothering her muscles. It's been so dry in the west that she forgot she ever had a problem with her neck and knees. (Reading back in the book, I realized that's not quite true. The neck pain Nancy had, though, was from lifting, etc. This is the old dull, miserable ache).

Just a couple of pictures today. We found one family that is going to have a really nice Halloween and pumpkin pie!

Sep 14, 2010

Where is Jack, Day 156

I don't want to insult the good people of Nebraska, but the ride from Valentine to Grand Island is very boring unless, of course, you like to see cornfields for 4 1/2 hours. This is the only picture Nancy took, today.

That's it folks!!!

Where is Jack, Day 155

Today, we woke up and took a walk on my road.
Then, we went to town to get the oil changed in the truck. We had to make an appointment for 3:30 p.m., so we decided that Nancy needed to grab something to eat and that we were going to find SOMETHING interesting in this area. We needed to get out of our funk.

We found the Fort Niobrara Wild Life Preserve . Unfortunately, Nancy had forgotten her camera. We saw one lone bison which would have been too far away to photograph, but Nancy always has her binoculars. We also found the Niobrara River and a narrow bridge that crossed it. It was getting near the time to go back to the Dodge dealer to get the oil changed. Nancy realized, then, that she had forgotten her purse as well as her camera so we had to go all the way back to the campground. We waited 1-1/2 hours to get the oil changed.

When we were finished, we headed back to the preserve and we came across this grumpy guy. I barked at him and Nancy told me to close my mouth. Geez, I was only trying to protect her.

We couldn't find the unusual bridge, but we could see an old bridge in the distance. We couldn't get to it, though, because the dirt road just ended. We did find the river and a couple of "scenic overlooks" which paled in light of what we had seen further west.


We walked several more times on my road. We have to be careful because of burrs on the ground-boy do they hurt. There are also rattle snakes.

Then we took a walk to the pond in the campground. We've seen geese and ducks. They don't seem to stay, but it's a pretty little pond.

Tomorrow we head out. I'm not sure exactly where. I guess we'll decide in the morning.

Where is Jack, Day 155

Today, we woke up and took a walk on my road.
Then, we went to town to get the oil changed in the truck. We had to make an appointment for 3:30 p.m., so we decided that Nancy needed to grab something to eat and that we were going to find SOMETHING interesting in this area. We needed to get out of our funk.

We found the Fort Niobrara Wild Life Preserve . Unfortunately, Nancy had forgotten her camera. We saw one lone bison which would have been too far away to photograph, but Nancy always has her binoculars. We also found the Niobrara River and a narrow bridge that crossed it. It was getting near the time to go back to the Dodge dealer to get the oil changed. Nancy realized, then, that she had forgotten her purse as well as her camera so we had to go all the way back to the campground. We waited 1-1/2 hours to get the oil changed.

When we were finished, we headed back to the preserve and we came across this grumpy guy. I barked at him and Nancy told me to close my mouth. Geez, I was only trying to protect her.

We couldn't find the unusual bridge, but we could see an old bridge in the distance. We couldn't get to it, though, because the dirt road just ended. We did find the river and a couple of "scenic overlooks" which paled in light of what we had seen further west.


We walked several more times on my road. We have to be careful because of burrs on the ground-boy do they hurt. There are also rattle snakes.

Then we took a walk to the pond in the campground. We've seen geese and ducks. They don't seem to stay, but it's a pretty little pond.
Tomorrow we head out. I'm not sure exactly where. I guess we'll decide in the morning.