Wednesday, June 13, 2012

At Least This Week Wasn't as Hot as Bakersfield in May 2006

We got a late start on Sunday and missed some of our favorite vendors at the farmers market.  Some were out of what we were looking for.  At one stand I asked if they had anymore garlic/cheddar bread, and they had sold out.  But!  They had a free sample loaf for me.  Another stand gave me a discount on my purchases.  It's a mixed bag at the end of market day.  You might not find what you wanted, but you can get great deals, and sometimes freebies, by being there as the tables are being cleared and unsold merchandise packed.  I was happy with what we brought home.  I'd forgotten Tierra Farm was closed on Sunday, so we missed out on the strawberries, but after dropping Bex off to visit at her sister's solo for a while, I picked up a ton of fresh produce to fill in the gaps at the grocery market.  I love shopping around the edges of the store, diving in just a bit to grab TP and coffee.  You can't get those at the farmers market.  Yet?

It was the perfect time to clean out the fridge, adding all that produce, and the great thing was that I didn't have a lot of "lost" food in there.  We are doing much better at eating fresh and using what we have, so no waste.

After a bit of time listening to music, I headed back to Jessi's to visit for a while.  They had just installed a new mister while I was there earlier, so on my way home I picked one up for our house, too.  I know it will help Breezy stay cool when she's outside, and it's going to be a great addition for our summer barbecues.  Becca and I made a great and filling spinach salad for dinner.  Now I'm wishing I'd planted spinach this year!

Monday was just too hot to write about.  We did make a trip to town and were able to take advantage of air conditioning.  Bex and I had a blast putting together a pasta dish without a recipe, tossing in fresh herbs and veggies and cutting fruit as a cool dessert.

Tuesday was cooler, but that's not saying a lot.  It was still hot.  On top of that, we had lots of wind.  The strong breezes cool us down a little bit, but they blow dust and leaves all over and make us nervous about fire danger.  We haven't had a day yet where we were going to be able to stay home to be available if the chicks peck each other too much, so the Rhodies and Chilly are still going in and out of the house.  When I put the chicks in their outside pen, I tip the box on its side to air out and be available.  It also provides some added shade in the late afternoon.  We put the chicks back into the box Tuesday evening, and I carried it inside.  Becca had Chilly on her head as she refilled their water.  When she came back in the room she said, "Watch out!"  I didn't know what she was talking about.  Just as I put my foot down on something on the ground, she said, "There's a lizard in the house!"  Oh my goodness.  I yanked my foot back and a small grey lizard moved away.  It had lost its tail somewhere.  Thankfully it froze as we tried to figure out how to get it outside.  I don't mind lizards much.  I definitely do mind them being indoors!  It must have hitched a ride somehow in the box we brought from outside.

Becca grabbed a shoe box, and I dropped it over the lizard.  Now to figure out how to get it back outside.  I didn't think it would work, but Becca wanted me to angle the lid underneath to pick it up.  My instincts said I needed something flat, but I humored her.  I thought I had nudged the lizard onto the lid, so lifted the end of the box to cover the top of the box completely ... and screamed when I saw the lizard still on the carpet.  I never scream.  I can't remember the last time I screamed.  That had us laughing hysterically as we found something flat to slide underneath and successfully take the lizard outside to release it.  As we passed by the now unused terrarium we borrowed from Jessica, Becca suggested we keep it.  Nope.  Not going to do that.  So that was my adrenaline rush for the week.  That's enough.

While clearing some boxes I discovered a journal that I'd started during our trip cross country with my parents to visit family in Indiana.  I had such a fun time re-reading and reliving this that I thought I'd share a little with you now and then.  Unfortunately, I neglected to write in the journal on the way home, but it recalls some fun moments and reminds me of how much I love being on the road.  (I took Becca out of school for this trip, but she did have homework scheduled and was required to keep a trip log as we traveled.  She was 8 years old at the time.)

May 16, 2006
Day 1
Novato to Bakersfield, CA

Even though Rebecca and I were running 1/2 hour late, we left only 15 minutes behind schedule, at 9:15 am.  After stopping at McDonald's and Starbucks, however, Dad remembered he hadn't packed the food.  After we went back to the house for the food, Rebecca's trip log accurately states we departed at 10:00 am.

She started off strong and willing, but soon Rebecca grew tired of school work.  What could have ended at 11:00 am went on past lunch. We stopped at Albertson's for lunch supplies and enjoyed turkey sandwiches, chips and yogurt.

By the time we stopped in Fresno, the air conditioner fan for the rear AC was loud.  Luckily, we were near the Sportsmobile dealer, who checked it out.  Unfortunately, he didn't have the part we need, so no rear AC.  It's okay for travel, but too hot for Mom at night.  (2012 side note - the part was ordered and shipped to our destination in Indiana.)

We arrived in Bakersfield hot and tired and hungry at 7:00 pm.  The KOA "Kabin" has no power, so it's dark and we need flashlights to find things.  We ate salad with chicken on it, turkey sandwiches and more yogurt at the picnic table with gnats and small flies.  Not too bad, but the air was humid and sticky, and they seemed to stick to our skin.

The Kabin was hot and dusty and situated next to the road, with a lot of traffic.  Top that off with a small airport nearby, and it was noisy and hot hot hot.  We slept without covers after our showers, and sweated all over again.

It seems like tour in a way.  So typical to have mechanical problems the first day out.  This time we didn't break down on the highway and it wasn't a major problem.

I am writing this the next morning, sitting by the pool while Becca splashes at 7:30 am.  The air is warm and comfortable, smells good, and birds are singing all around.  We are getting ready for Day 2 of our adventure.

May 17, 2006
Day 2
Bakersfield to Kingman, AZ

Somewhere between Barstow and God Knows Where, you begin to wonder why you decided to take this drive.  The air is hot, the ground rocky, and water is the best thing around.  The last rest stop before Needles has signs warning of rattlesnakes.  The best thing to do is watch the shadows of the clouds and wait for them to pass over you.  Any shade is good.

Just when you think there is nothing good at all in this dry, hot place, a vanilla ice cream cone from Dairy Queen makes everything sweeter and lightens the mood.  All feels well, despite the fact that they charge $3.99 a gallon for regular gasoline!

Motel 6 in Kingman tonight.  Mom needs the AC.  After checking in, Dad and I made a run to the grocery store.  We ate salad and turkey sandwiches again tonight.  Still tastes good.

The AC in the motel room was louder than the trains running through blowing whistles all night, but we got a good night's sleep anyway.  Max (2012 note: Mom's poodle) wasn't feeling well, but did better after rest in the room.  Lots of dogs at the motel, and friendly people.

Watched American Idol, then went to sleep.

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