Why do we do what we do

when we do it? That is a question Roy asked me after this day was done. Saturday, we got a late start even though we had all intentions of attempting the farmer’s market again. (I would stay in the car.) Needless to say, we stayed in bed. When we did get up and moving, we were side- tracked by a nice rack of halibut. After a few pictures, we head down to Anchor Point just to find out they are paving the road and to expect long delays. We decided not to wait. Roy has been reading the Milepost (a book that is published yearly for travelers in Alaska). He read about a small Russian village of ‘Old Believers‘ (the link is to an article from 2013). On a side note. In our exploring of Homer in 2017 we discovered the road to the village Kachemak Selo mentioned in the article. They are a very closed off community

After not wanting to wait for the construction we stopped for a coffee in one of those non-Starbucks drive through coffee huts. Saw there was a pizza place in the same parking lot. So we got a fresh made slice (1/4 of a large pizza). Roy and I split one slice. It was good and even had glazed garlic butter on the crust. Then, we travelled ten miles down a paved road in Anchor Point Alaska and found the village of Nikolaevsk Alaska.

the driveway
old church

The town itself is very quiet when you drive through. To me it felt a little like pulling back a curtain to peek in on someone or something. The center piece of the town seems to be the church A little explanation about the church (the link is to an article from 2015). They have service on Saturday night I was able to take the pictures right before people started to arrive for service. You could see a sense of community along with a reverence for the church.

work in progress

The congregation is in the process of building a new church, it looks like they have been at it awhile.

waiting for the dome

I am including some links about the architecture of Russian churches and Onion Domes

I hope you enjoy the pictures of the church.

all ages

So, we head back to town but before we leave, I took a picture of the school which teaches all grades under one roof. I thought it interesting that there was even a school for a community that small, being they are so close to Anchor Point.

even little birds get a share

We decide to give the road to the beach another shot. We were first car by the flagger, he said it would be about a half hour, so we waited. I am so glad we did. Had we come through when we first stopped, we would have missed the feast that was occurring on the beach. When the fishermen are done with fileting the catch the scraps get thrown on the beach for the birds to eat.

I’ll take mine to go

It was cool to see them all swarm on the beach and even fight over some pieces. I was not able to get any real fighting on camera, I did however capture the landing of an eagle after the fight. I think he thought He was victorious, because the wings are up saying: “he is the champion!”

I won

So, to answer the question Roy posed. I am not sure why it happens. I am just happy Roy listens to whatever voice or thought tells him what direction to go in.

Credit Cards EXPIRE …..

Not People. May 2, 1993 was the day I learned people expire not just credit cards. A little back story. My life was changing for the good in 93: I had met the one that saved me from myself. I moved out of Wisconsin. I grew as a person. I lost my first true love my Dad.

I have to say I was definitely his favorite just ask me. I was the baby of the family and was truly spoiled by him just ask my brothers and sister. Looking back like any family we had some good memories and some bad memories, but they were memories made special with him. One memory that came to mind as I am writing this. One time dad had to kill a bat that got into the house. All I remember is me hiding behind mom in the kitchen and dad running through the house trying to kill it. I know dad killed it and threw it outside because it was dead on the side walk when I left for school.
I chuckle every time I think of how you and Dave Jr caught me smoking. I’m not sure what made you more upset me skipping school or me smoking. Turn around is fair play I did get Dave Jr in trouble for his smoking. Picture this I am blackmailing my brother to keep quiet about the fact he smokes. So I come in flipping a nickel in my hand (at least I think it was). Dad asks where did I get that. I say give me a quarter and I’ll tell you. He does, I say you didn’t here this from me but Davey is smoking. I was 8 years old. Fast forward about six years and picture this. I am walking down the street during school and smoking a cigarette; I see dad’s car drive by I think he didn’t see me. He didn’t Dave Jr did. The car whips around because Dave says wasn’t that Darcy smoking a cigarette. Busted.

I remember the time you tried to teach me to drive. We were going out to mom’s house and you had me drive for some reason I could not get the hang of using the same foot for gas and brake thing. Well we get to her street and I am getting ready to park the car. So I think I will try this. I put the car in reverse to act like I am parallel parking because there was nothing that close behind me. I give it a little gas and then go to try to stop, but I didn’t move my right foot to the brake. Yes, I gunned the car in reverse almost hit another car. Long story short, I got the car parked, Dad grabbed the keys, and went in to the house. He then threw the keys on the table and said “Damn, it Nadine if you want Darcy to drive you teach her.” Needless to say I did not get my license that year.

So, back to why people expire. Dad had been in the hospital for about a month, I was living in Chicago, I could not make it back to see him that weekend. I did however want to check on him. I call the hospital and ask to speak to the nurse taking care of my dad (he was in ICU) I am told she is off today. I go so did they move him because last I knew he was getting better. She said NO, he expired. I promptly replied WHAT ARE YOU SAYING CREDIT CARDS EXPIRE!!!!

After the shock of the news, I was able to process, and Roy helped me grasp the situation. I do have to share a funny that happened on the way to the funeral I had bought a black dress with a short slit in the back, well, I got out of the car and the slit became a split. So, Roy has me buy a sewing kit from the truck stop we were stopped at, and he is sewing my dress with me in it in the parking lot. This was a great way to lighten my mood on a sad day.

I miss you Dad, but I do know you are in a better place and are smiling down on us.

The Long Story….

about why I hated this morning phone call. This is just a tongue in cheek rant so read on.

A little background. I get all of my healthcare through the VA (Veterans Adminstration) I am blessed for this. After the age of 50 a person should have preventive test like mammograms and such. Mine right now is the and such. So no worries. I had my yearly health check up this past September so consults were put in for all these test.

Skip to October and because of COVID the clinic is doing all of the preop appointments virtually I’m ok with this. So I have that appointment and get told that no tests are being done unless you are bleeding. So I’m thinking December maybe. It is finally scheduled for early May.

Fast forward to this morning, Saturday. I had an awesome night on Friday coupled with a full day which made me bone tired. Not even 9am (I rolled into bed at about 5am) the phone rings, I answered it and hear this perky voice on the other end. My first thought was how much coffee have you had, I had none, brain not functioning. I get over that first hurdle realize it is not someone trying to reach me about my extended car warrenty.

Now onto the appointment, I want early; so we start with how far do you live I say about 55 miles. You live less then 60 so on Saturday you will have to come to the hospital for a COVID test. What is my other choice I live 60 miles from the hospital. I am answering these questions by trying to get the answer out of a sleeping Roy, I don’t even know where I am when I don’t get my beauty sleep. Well, then you have to come an hour before your scheduled test. A rapid COVID test will be given. So far so good we settle on 7am, that means 6am for the test; yes and it takes an hour for the results. Then she informs me that the lab doesn’t open until 6:30am. So I’m trying to wrap my head around how I can have my test at 7am and still be able to get the results back. You can’t she said but we will still make it for 7am. So in my mind I’m thinking I would be throwing off a whole days schedule I was an OR tech for way too long. I am also thinking I am way too tired for this. Bottom line we found a day where I will be there at 6:30am so the tests can go on.

On to the instructions this is where I am starting to feel bad for her, because it was like she had a step by step flowchart and she could not miss a step. I even asked if this would be in the information sent out she said yes. I then asked if it would be ok if she could let me go. I explained I was too tired to function. Guess what! She continued like I said nothing, to go on with her steps. So I just let her speak because there was no way to stop her. At this point I came to the conclusion she was trying to reach me about my extended car warranty or another prerecorded message. Amazing though how hard it is to grasp things when you are half asleep.

In the end she was finally done and a call that felt like an hour was really only 15 minutes, but a very painful 15 minutes. It is all good, I was able to stay up and some pictures and a blog up.

I hope you enjoyed this little story about my morning cal. Out again tonight for some more photos.

The Wheels on the Car Go Round& Round

until they don’t. This is the story of the merit badge we earned on the Dempster. tiredam I will say I really thought Roy having two spares for the Jeep was overkill. It wasn’t. The second day up the Dempster started with a little bit of drizzle not bad at all. We made it passed the Artic circle even got a picture. Then we had just mentioned that the tire monitoring system on the RV had not beeped. Side note this system had been beeping over nothing. All of a sudden we hear a beep and see on the dash that our right rear tire of the jeep is going flat. You know how you just get a feeling, I knew the minute I saw the rock standing up and we hit the it that one of our tires were going to go flat. I hate it when I’m right :).

Roy was able to roll to a stop and move over to the side of the road. So we are sitting there looking at each other cringing about having to change the tire. We bought a hoist we could put in the hitch of the car to get the tire off the roof. Small problem was we would have to drop the trailer, and set everything up jack up the car and change tire. I was willing to do it until Roy’s mind found a second choice. Flag some one down, head back to Eagle have them come change the tire. (remember this road is the less traveled road). My response was OK, I think we should give it until noon, (it was 10am) if no one comes we will change it ourselves.

Good news here we got extremely lucky within 10 minutes two cars were headed our way. The first vehicle had a man and woman and two kids very full car. They were willing to make room I was ok with that. Right behind them was a trucker camper with two people in it, the first car said they would wait and see if the couple could make room. I go check and they did, so on the way to Eagle Plains we head. Thirty one miles back to the restaurant and gas station did not take too long. One thought in my mind was these people could be ax murders (side note they weren’t). The other thought was no one will be looking for us for at least a week as we had no cell service.

Now, my thought was no way to contact Roy if they can’t come and change tire. Of course that was not the case, people will do anything for a price. (Price was cheaper then I thought it would be). The owner only had to questions for me; 1. do you have a spare 2. why don’t you change it. Answers to both was yes and my hubby has COPD and I have MS. I just answered the guy said no problem, inside I’m jumping up and down. So, $200 Canadian lighter Gerald and I were on our way. Funny thought it took half the time to travel to where we were because someone knows the area. I did learn where the restaurant gets their water, a creek down the road.

The most annoying part for Gerald was the mosquitoes he had to deal with, he did get tipped for this. I tried to keep the mosquitoes away I don’t think it helped. We were on our way from flat tire to new tire in 2 1/2 hours. Fast forward to Inuvik, Roy needs a new tire to replace the one that is flat. Once the tire came off we saw that the rock did a number where it could not be fixed.

Timing and plans are everything. I say this because we were able to extend our camping at Happy Valley. Original plan was to spend 2 days with the trailer in Tuk, only needed a few hours to explore the city. So our accommodations secured lets go find a tire. Not so easy as it would be in a city, but that is all part of the road less traveled. We were able to get the tire flown into Inuvik this was a good thing.

Tire $350 Flight $300 Peace of Mind Priceless. So now with a brand new tire on the car spare tire back on roof, bad tire on top of roof too. The best part of the whole tire excursion was the comments of how prepared those people are 2 tires on top of the car. The look on the faces after we tell them that nope already had to replace tire, taking the flat back for a refund. dirty1

Sorry for the delay in posting I just wanted to wait until new shoes for the jeep were ready to be put on, we are getting these this week.

Random Thoughts

Yesterday Roy and I were sitting outside at the pinic table. The sun was on my hair, wind gently blowing through it, hubby has his elbows on table. He looks into my eyes I’m thinking this is romantic. You are too, well you are wrong. What came out of his mouth ‘My you really do have grey hair.’

Seriously. I thought he was going to say ‘having a great time’ ‘can you get me a cup of coffee. That is why I love him. After I faked being shocked more then I was he did tell me it looks good and frames my face.

He redeemed himself later by taking me out for ribs. This dinner will feed us for most of the week. We are boondocking in Fallon so no microwave solve the problem order two whole rack of ribs so we have leftovers. The old expression eyes bigger then stomach held true. These ribs were the best I’ve had since Carson’s the place for Ribs in Chicago. Truly fall off the bone no knife needed, and tangy not spicy BBQ sauce.

Today we hung around Lone Pine and did some more scoping for the October rally, looking forward to the movie museum and movie road tour. We checked out the kitchen at the campground and found some birds for the birders in our group.

Something tells me this trip is going to be special be it animals, scenery or just spending time with my love. I am also glad you are coming along for the journey.

Buki’s Road Trip

for a cat who did not travel well he has had a lot of adventures through this blog. This year he will be able to join the trip in spirit. We have his ashes and will be taking them with us, I have set him up in a travel case. Side note is we won’t have to be concerned about curvy roads, ashes DO Not get car sick. The memories involved with road tripping with Buki are many. One of my favorites is the fact that he knows you do not drive at night it is for sleeping. So if the sun set at 5pm he thought for sure we needed to be at our destination. The other thing I remember the most is curvy roads disagree with tummy, (I have to say will not miss this). His own personal hidey hole an used disposable litter box. Our road trips with Buki have always been an adventure, both Roy and I will miss him. He is in a better place and did not have to endure to much pain on this side.

I am sharing just a few of the many cute pics of him.

Would’ve I Believed?

Probably not. I’ve been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis for ten years, recently I’ve been struggling with it. After having a discussion with a fellow battle budy in this fight I decided to write a letter my newly diagnosed self could have read. We both decided they would have said not me, for differant reasons, her she fought through it and didn’t do too bad. I on the other hand had some major issues because the medicine I was on was not keeping it in check. So at first I thought I’m on the down hill fast. Once I was put on the right medicine for me I leveled out and progression slowed for awhile.

Dear newly diagnosed,

This is not a death sentence, although sometimes you will think that. You are not Annette Funocello, she had this disease before the recent drugs used to slow progression. You are not Montel Williams, or anyone else with this disease. You are who you were yesterday when there was no label or more important no MS. Keep your humor it will help. Remember weebles wobble but they don’t fall down just bump into a lot of walls.

Now, that you have this diagnosis, WHAT NOW. I would stay off the internet before your first appointment with your neurologist (scary stuff out there). I would bring a support person to your appointment, always good for another set of ears or a shoulder to cry on. As far as medical do not forget your other body parts, sometimes we have other issues not related to MS. I wish it was one and done.

OK, over the first shock, now what? SCREAM, CRY, YELL, LAUGH, (repeat as often as needed) and CONTINUE to LIVE. Sometimes you will find out you need to slow down, this is OK. Use that time to notice things you were to busy to notice before. I have learned to enjoy hummingbirds (just wish I had 1/4 of their energy). I’m not sure if this will sounds right you might have to experience it. Push yourself in moderation. You are not super human, but you still have determination. Enjoy your abilities (balance, walking, thinking) because there might come a time that these things start to weaken.

Speaking of balance this is something you need to figure out. I know when I started down this path I depended too much on aids and stuff because I was a little off balance wise. I did not know at the time I was giving in. My advice is continue to push yourself, remain active, use the aids when you need them. I have a wonderful husband who nudges me sometimes but will also tell me to ease up when he sees me trying to be super human. Having a person in your life who can be an extra check on you is a plus. I have learned from him that I can do more then I thought. I am still learning though that the time has come when the disease has taken some of that ability. If you are attempting something in a group that could cause you either to have a flair or not be 100% let the people know. It saves headaches all around.

Adapt to your changing abilities. Find someone who also has MS, not to compare symptoms, but, to work through what is going on. Only someone who has MS can help understand some of the doubts, fears, and bruises. Do not get discouraged if his/her MS is better or worse then yours.

Most important continue to LIVE LIFE just remember sometimes you have to aproach it from another angle.

With love and support

Your Future Self