Friday, November 18, 2011


Today I must decide whether to call an ambulance to get Deb to the hospital. She has developed an inability to walk at all. Don't know why...I spent the last couple of days building a ramp with scrap wood around here to help her get in and out of the rig, instead of the Camping World steps that we originally used. She can barely get up and down the ramp with my help. I am truly worried. I will get her there one way or another.
  I originally thought that this blog/journal would be a series of wonderful photos of the journey west, the seeking of a quiet mind, and the peace that would entail. So it would seem. But my life, my struggle to find my soul is not coming easily. I would never abandon Deb, my wife, as so often happens when one spouse becomes extremely disabled. Deb seeks the same things I do. And burned into my grey matter is one phrase that I keep repeating to myself consciously and unconsciously is No man left behind.
  Those that follow me on this blog, I truly thank. It's my connection to the outside world and other like-minded folks. In my opinion, the salt of the earth. But it's no travelogue. And not for the faint of heart. The photo above is Deb from a quieter time, on the beach in Florida. Taken about 3 months ago.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Veteran's day and the 10 mile adventure

Our time was up yesterday at the COE campground. I had to move my rig and trailer to some place more permanent so we can wait for the funds to get the transmission repaired or rebuilt. The necessity for electric, and bathrooms for Deb prevents me from a boondocking site. We can go a week on our batteries, but Deb has had some problems lately with her disability.
  It was Veteran's day, and I didn't feel like doing a damn thing. Just like on Memorial day. Want to sit on my butt and hide. Too many military reminders, too many "Veteran's day sales!!" and too many parades. I do like the fact that so many people are now welcoming our soldiers home. But it wasn't always that way....
  Well, I really had to buck up. I didn't know if this rig was gonna make it or not, or even move a foot. I had found an RV park (ugh) that would take us in with bathrooms very close, so I packed up and prepared for the big  push, about 10 miles away. I was worried shiftless about the transmission being shiftless. During the drive over, to my great surprise all I had to do was punch the accelerator a couple of times to get the damn thing to shift! So the great "adventure" of moving the rig and trailer turned out to be anti-climatic, (climactic? climaxtic? who the hell knows) and we pulled in to the RV park and secured our spot, parked in a row of other RV's and trailer's and prepared to endure the bleakness of feeling like we are in a trailer park with no scenery and no sounds of nature wafting in our windows.
  But damn, I'm grateful for it! We could have been stuck on the side of the road, calling in a tow truck that I could barely pay for with our meager funds!
  Bottom line is, I had to get off my pitty pot and get busy with life and living and do what I had to do. No mattter what the emotional baggage I had to indulge myself with, life don't stop because I choose to live in a cocoon by choice on these kind of days.
  The picture was taken about 20 years ago, at a Vietnam moving wall veteran's memorial. My son is there with me. The only one I have ever attended...

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Comments welcome

Well, since I'm so new at this blogging thing, I just learned that I had the wrong settings on my "comments" setting. Sorry, for all those who wished to communicate. I know that must have been frustrating, it would have been for me. I do like to make comments on other forums and blogs.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Stuck in Temple

We are in a campground near Temple, TX for at least a month, due to another transmission failure. This makes the third time. What bites my ass is that last time it was supposed to be done right. Due to my lack of knowledge of transmissions in general, I allowed the repair guys to call it good enough when they said that the lack of overdrive in the transmission would be no problem. I allowed them to tell me this because I have never towed anything in OD, and I tow a small enclosed trailer with my motorcycle in it. So it sounded logical to me that I did not need OD in this 700r4 tranny. Obviously they took advantage of my lack of knowledge, collected their money, and sent me down the road with my disabled wife. Apparently not thinking a whit about the disastrous consequences of being stuck on the side of the road with a wife that can hardly walk, cannot deal with any problems of a severe nature such as this.
  This is a trend in America. Take the money and run. Call it good enough and quit. Half truths and pass the buck.
  Anyway, we cannot drive anywhere, cannot even boondock while we are waiting for the monthly stipend to enable us to pay for another tranny job. We were lucky to have found a COE campground near Temple to wait it out. IF they let us stay here over 14 days. If they don't, well I reckon we are in trouble. I'm running for groceries and the like on the bike.
  I ask you, if anyone ever reads this stuff, when is America gonna wake up and get back to the word is the bond type of business dealings? It ain't gonna happen. We are too far along the road of "anything goes" if ya get the money quick. Now that's capitalism!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The most loyal creature

My constant companion, and 'hero,' is Patchy, my dog. She is a Lhasa Apsa and 16 years old. I need to get her in to this journal, I feel her time on this plane is limited. She is now having some old dog syndromes. One of which is her total blindness.
  Not long ago in Florida she attempted to "save" me from what she thought was a life-threatening encounter with  3 hunting dogs that were clamoring and barking, snarling, and generally causing mayhem around me. Patchy was blind then, but she made a beeline for those dogs by sound alone, galloping on those little short legs and barking up a storm. Nothing I could do to stop her, but eventually I picked her up and got her away. I must say that I do love this little creature, and it will break my heart when she leaves...

Friday, October 7, 2011

Sunny shores, goodbye. On to Texas

Kind of a late post, because we've been in Texas for a few days. land of my birth. It's been a long time. I grew up here (well, kind of grew up, I left when I was 16) and began an adventure into the 'outside' world. It was a shocker. I wasn't the traditional kid raised in the family, high school, and on to the job. The things that happened to me when I was on the road then for a year,, and then on to the Army, were life changing events, to put it mildly. I mention this because I believe a seed of non-traditional thinking and philosophy was planted at that time.  My (our) goal is to leave bitterness behind, just like everyone living this lifestyle.
  Anyway, I've been thinking maybe I should appreciate the seed that was planted way back then, and just take for what it is. Life.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Hey, recognition!

Well, Andy. the 'famous' oil field gate guard in Texas, just left me a note thanking me for my service in Vietnam. I am sitting high today, for a bit of recognition that lifted my heart away from bitterness. Andy's web site is so full of useful information on just about anything related to RVing and life in general that I have to plug him a little bit. A man after my own heart, with the dignity and honesty to admit his human failures and triumphs.
  Right on, Andy, and thanks

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A look at sudden change

I have just been sitting here (raining outside, the remnants of tropical storm Lee), and thinking about the sudden trigger that allowed me and Deb to pursue this gypsy life. I hung on to my old life and line dance (have I said that phrase before?) that I pursued for so many years, the numerous self inflicted chains of "honor," and the so-called "American Dream." When I think about it now, It just doesn't make any sense at all. I was hustling and bustling with a business that could barely stay afloat, Deb was doing the same with her accounting job. We raised two boys, through 20 years or so, wanting them to follow in our harassed footsteps. I got a heart condition, and one sad day in a matter of seconds, in 2005, Deb lost much of her ability to think and function because of a little blood bubble in her head that burst. Yes, it was a brain aneurysm.
   So suddenly everything changed. Life reminding me, over the course of a couple of years, that you can work  your butt off and plan all kinds of shit, but any of a thousand different fates could await you, and you realize you are not LIVING at all.
  Just existing on this wonderful planet and doing what most people do, which is play follow the leader. You might just say that you were never the following type, that you do your own thing, and that you are a bonafide individualist.
  I was required to wake up, as I sat there in my bedside vigil beside Deb, who happened to be in a coma. I knew that she might not survive. Months later when she came home, she was of course different. No short term memory. No ability to drive. half blind in one eye. And  a real problem with sudden panic attacks.
   After the operations over the next couple of years, she is somewhat improved. But that sudden event changed everything in our lives, and caused us both to look at what really counts in our lives. We decided we were not going to live pursuing a fantasy, and instead to pursue a dream.
  That dream being traveling wild and free, and taking the time to see through a program of madness. So we are nomads now, and we still have our problems with maintenance, where to camp, gas prices, what to eat, and so forth. But let me tell you, the stress level is considerably reduced. And most of all, we have come together like never before. I have a quiet mind today.

Monday, August 29, 2011

The "romani" syndrome

OK, what's the deal with this romani stuff anyway? Well, I am a gypsy descendent, and my first name is Guy.  But it goes a lot deeper than that. It's also a matter of attitude. Not everyone is cut out for this mode of living. Ya gotta cut everything loose that you did that line dance for, have an adventurous spirit, and most of all get down to the heart and soul of your time on earth and what is important.
The international Rom flag

  No organized society has ever tolerated nomads in the midst of town and city dwellers, it goes against the grain of society building and expansion. It makes people uncomfortable, a free spirit in their midst. I guess I have always had this philosophy about life, and living, since I was a kid. I think some are born with it, others aquire it when or if they lose everything. Everything being all that material stuff that you really did'nt need in the first place. Yeah, you still need the things that are necessary for your general welfare, but not the albatrosses around your neck that you keep on hanging there until you fall flat on your face.
  It does take  a brave soul. And courage. And a quiet, deep look at life as you know it...

Sunday, August 28, 2011

It's HOT!

Cuttin' up some dinner

Our trailer

This is our trailer that we haul the bike and our other supplies with. The toolbox for my carpentry tools will be mounted on the front of the trailer. Of  course, we had to get a hitch extension to keep from jacknifing in to the box. We'll see how it works out.

My budget modified RV

It's a 1987 chevy box truck, camper chassis, 350 engine. It's called a "cutaway" in the van jargon. I bought it in Pennsylvania after my first conversion (a short "skoolie") blew it's diesel engine. We were stuck in North Carolina for a while because of having to put a rebuilt transmission in it. Hard on the pocketbook.
  With our limited income, the upgrades are coming pretty slow. Iv'e put in a couple of huge AGM 8d batteries in to supply our house power, and of course the inverter to run our electrical stuff. Pics will follow later, for those interestted in upgrading things.

The "forest" bike

This is the bike that I bought to negotiate the back roads of North Carolina, thinking that my cruiser would'nt do it. So far it's been great for that, but as far as touring goes, it ain't gonna cut it. Very uncomfortable for any extended period of time. Damn seat like a 2x4! But at least the riding position is upright. I'd drop the "touring" off the sport touring name, though. It's a Suzuki Bandit 1200s, and it will jerk your arms out of their sockets if you are not careful. It's got a shorter wheelbase than any other bike I've had, and man, this thing will get up and go! Commonly referred to as a "hooligan" bike, because of all the young dudes popping wheelies on it. Well, I ain't no hooligan, but the maneuverability of the beast is the best of any bike I've ever had. I just take it slow and easy (mostly) and I don't do wheelies.
  Here in Florida, most roads are flat with no mountains, so I'm hankerin' for a cruiser again!

Stuck no more

Well, I'm gearing up for our Westward trip in a couple of weeks...hope to run in to Brian out that way at some point in time! Been stuck here so long my mind is sinking in the mud!
We gotta travel slow, since I'm the only driver (my wife is disabled) and we are limited to SS income. But come November hope to be in Arizona!
Westward Ho!