Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Black Hills

It is Thursday morning and I am in a Best Western in Sundance. I took a room for the first time on the trip and though I didn’t watch all of Tiger’s round (at four AM I ran out of gas), I awoke to see that he had posted a 69, three under so that means I will try to watch tomorrow. He starts at 2 EST so that is noon my way. Yesterday was okay, with a decent round of golf in the Black Hills, fishing in Box Elder Creek (an absolutely lovely stretch but not a hit), riding my bike for an hour along the Michelson Rails to Trails route for an hour near Hill City and then riding for another half hour in Sundance. Today I should hit the Big Horns so that should be fun and I will probably camp near Sheridan to go to a movie. I have done very little writing so far on this trip and I haven’t touched the saxophone once but I will try to play some today and after this blog I hope to write a little.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

first two days of the western trip

The first day of my trip went very well. I couldn’t leave until 9 because I needed to get the bike worked on, so I was able to practice some, do weights and yoga, and catch a short nap. East Coasters replaced the canister quickly and by 10:15 I was on the way. I stopped first at Paint Creek to ride my bike for 40 minutes then drove past Morehead to play golf. Following that I ended up at a KOA just across the river from Louisville. I rode my bike along the river and through the Falls of the Ohio State Park. Interesting but not overly impressive. Dinner was at the Buckhead grill where I had veggie frajitas. I had a horrible night sleeping because it was too hot so I ended up heading out around 6. I stopped to have a small breakfast and write some and I made some progress on my short story but I’m not sure what to do with the essay. I drove a few miles and then took a long nap and then felt much better. I stopped to ride my bike out in corn and soybean country and that was fun. I got back driving and ended up in Bloomington to watch the World Cup Final.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

one week before my western trip

I am a week away from leaving on my trip and everything is in good shape. I fixed the road today dropping three loads of dirt over the patch I made out of 2 2x8. It worked perfectly. I also scraped the road but it was so dry and hard that the scraping didn’t do much. I have my outlines basically done and I have a good list of things I need to get done but that won’t happen until later in the week. My easement money should finally be available on the 10th and then I should be able to pay down the equity line to around 151K, a nice improvement that should last until Kelly buys her house. I had a nice time with Claire last night, meeting her for a walk along the Huckleberry Trail and then coffee and dessert at Starbucks. My golf game is going very well and I am playing every other day. I have been walking most mornings and the plants are enchanter’s nightshade, heal all, oxeye daisy, white avens. I have been eating blackberries and the wineberries are coming in and I should have a bunch for Kate. I am seeing Rhonda on Tuesday for dinner and then I will see Claire Gallo to celebrate her birthday on Wednesday and then dinner on Friday with Cathy. I worked on my short story about the Erie Barge Canal and I think it is getting a little better. I haven’t been doing too much writing lately but I should get back into it this week, and certainly after I head out on my trip. Gloria is going to be coming out for two weeks in September so that should be fun.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

back in virginia

The visit to Kelly on Saturday went well. I was able to get a lot of big stuff to the dump in three loads and I trimmed some trees also. I had fun with Lucia though she sometimes wanted to be left alone. They took me to dinner and then I went to bed around ten in my truck really tired. I got up around 6 and drove to the Potomac, where I got a good bike ride in while it was still pretty cool. I drove more, napped, and then played golf at Ingleside. I ended up watching the soccer match at 6 and then I rode my bike some more on the Roanoke College Campus. I stopped at Walmart for supplies and then headed home where the road was fine with no trees down. On Monday morning I cut the grass and trimmed around the house, went into town for a walk with Rob and then wrote some before heading back to the house to practice and get ready for dinner. On Tuesday morning, I took a long walk, pruning as I went and then I went in for a walk with Rob. I did some writing (my FAR is almost finished and I started a new poem) then took a nap, then played golf and rode my bike along the New River. Then back to my office for a little more work and my lumosity training which I have gotten back into.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Friday Morning, Tomorrow Kelly

I am now in southern Connecticut at a Quality Inn and my camping plans fell apart. I had a nice dinner at the Italian restaurant last night and then walked some before heading into the room. I slept well and when I got up I worked on my novel and have over 2700 words. Yesterday was a decent day but I must say I would be glad to get home. This morning, however, I know I will be back Sunday. I did play golf and ride my bike yesterday and did keep up my novel writing although it was a bit of a struggle. I will have a pretty easy day of driving (4 hours or so) and that should put me about an hour from Kelly. I think I can be a real help to her and Alfredo and it should be fun to see Lucia.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

visiting Merrill and Acadia

Next morning, I got up early and showered, did my wash, practiced my sax and then met Merrill at 12:15 at the Maine Grind for lunch. I have known Merrill for many years and she always strikes me as deeply good, deeply concerned, deeply loving (especially with her husband and son Merrin). I admire her. She doesn’t have the histrionics I often end up in. After lunch, we went for a two mile hike at an historic house nearby. We chatted about her family and her nursing aspirations. After leaving Merrill I left for Acadia and went for a long bike ride around Eagle Lake. It was then nap time and after a brief nap I was ready to have dinner, this time treating myself to lobster at the Bar Harbor Lobster Pound. After that I walked around a lot, ending up at a tavern that had internet and writing on my novel. I got back to the campground around 11 and went right to bed since I was very tired. I slept very well and got up around 7, showered, and then drove into Bar Harbor for breakfast at The Two Cats (very good especially the spicy potatoes) and then worked on my story, which is moving along (1500 words). Then it was time for my bike ride (to Witch’s Hole) and then nap time. After that I headed to Two Cats again for a very desired cup of coffee and a blueberry muffin. I worked on a couple of poems (the Vermont poem needs work on the ending) and then it was blog time.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Vermont to Maine

This is going to be a catchup entry since a lot has happened since I left New York. On Friday morning I drove up to Bennington, battling the rain for most of the drive. As I got east of Troy the weather cleared a bit and I was able to play nine holes at a long par 3 course and I shot very well. After that I drove to Bennington and got my fishing license, then headed up to the campground on 9 up by the ski area. I stopped to fish the Walloomsac and it was lovely water and I caught 3 browns. After checking in, I drove back to town for pizza and a walk with my earbuds. The next day was still a bit threatening weather wise, but I did go fishing again in one of the tributaries of the Walloomsac and caught 3 small brook trout. I then drove to Camping on the Battenkill and took a nap, then rode my bike for an hour, then did yoga and practiced my sax. I had dinner at Mulligan’s and then went to the Fault in our Stars, which had me in tears throughout. I walked around Manchester a little and went back to the campground. In the morning I decided to head for Bar Harbor and after checking my GPS I realized that I had underestimated the drive by 3 hours, 7 hours instead of 4. That meant a long day in the truck if I wanted to get to the coast and that was my intention for the first 3 hours. But then after a nap, I decided to not worry about getting there and stopped at Pawtuckaway State Park for a long bike ride through the hilly and forested park roads. After that I drove on, expecting Claire’s e-mailed letter at any point, but luckily not finding it. I stopped to play golf at a first rate links course (where I shot a 45) and then drove on to Ellsworth after talking to Merrill about having lunch and a walk tomorrow. I couldn’t find a place to watch the game (Sunday in Ellsworth is dead) and finally ended up in a Mexican restaurant where the woman kindly fixed me some food and let me watch the first half. The game was out of hand so the second half wasn’t important. What a boring series. After checking in at my campground, I drove back to Denny’s and worked on my novel.