Vancouver Island

July 14th, 2019

The ferry crossing was uneventful until we went to exit.  The RV appeared to not be releasing the brake.  We are first in line and many travelers behind I’m sure thought we were brand new to RVing!  The Ferry personnel were sure of it!  Finally they got the others backed up and off and we got out and unhitched the car to see it that would help.  It did!  Now off to customs and we are in separate vehicles.  I got a really nice guy and he told me where I could wait for Paul who was in a much slower lane.  This time we had no issues and got off and drove to our destination for the night.

It turns out that the cars brake buddy (the thing we put in the car to brake in case we need it!) had shifted and was putting the brake on.  To Paul and I both it felt more like the RV wasn’t releasing the brake but it wasn’t because we have had no issues since.  And the dead car battery is fixed now too as we just had the wrong fuse in the car somewhere!  Maybe now we have everything worked out and we can sit back and enjoy our new RV.

Parades down 101, Golf, Cosmos, Girls day out, Great food and Forever Friends

July 8th, 2019

This is our 3rd annual 4th of July get together in Port Orford.  We have all been there other times but this is starting to shape up to a tradition!  Always a great time, 5 couples that all met 35 years ago when we started square dancing!  The Kings are the last to join the group so only 20 years with them and now we are neighbors.  We all started in San Jose and now none of us lives there anymore.  This group has followed us around the country from Oregon to Maine and places in between.

This year was no different than the other two other than no one got sick this year.  There was too much laughter and enough food we need more couples to join us so I can quite gaining weight!  That’s another story for another time.  This year we added something we use to enjoy on camp outs, darts!  Eddie put together a tournament and the final 2 were the Kings!  How fair is that?

Eddie cooking for the crew

 

Paul and Kip in the buffet line

 

We had amazing weather this week! Eddie, Dennis and Kip taking in some sunshine

 

Sunshine and Cocktails, Pat is enjoying both

 

Paul giving tech support to our Hostess, Peggy

 

Thanks to everyone for an awesome week again!
See you next year!

 

Our first Trip

June 30th, 2019

We are back in the saddle again!  Paul left Roseville on Thursday and I will catch up with him Friday afternoon in the car; Just like the Full time days we will be heading north, visiting friends, working a little and enjoying the country once again.  This trip is our first in our new Jayco Melbourne Prestige.

Finding Paul is like hitting a moving target.  I left Roseville about 11 am and met up with him just north of Ukiah along the highway.  I missed the exit but the good news is we had great cell service so I took the next exit and he caught up to me.  We hitched the car up, had a little lunch and headed north into the redwoods.

About 4 pm we pulled into Richardson Grove and they had a great spot for one night!  That’s all we need.  The campground was full but by 8 pm all was quiet and I thoroughly enjoyed falling asleep in the dark of the forest.

The RV handled the windy road great and towing the car went smoothly until we stopped for the night in Humbug State Park near where we will spend a week with friends in Port Orford Oregon.  We found a site that would work for the one night and got out to unhook the car, dead battery!  Hmmm, thought we had gotten that all fixed up, apparently not.  So on to plan B.  We called our destination in Port Orford to see if we could arrive a day early and then our friends, Ed and Peggy to meet us there and help either push the car or jump the battery.’

Everything went fine, got the car going and we are off to a fabulous week with friends.

The adventure continues

June 18th, 2019

Before we left for Europe we dropped the Van off at a dealership as a trade-in and ordered our newest RV.  A 2020 Jayco Melbourne Prestige 24KP was scheduled to arrive May 24th.  That didn’t happen so we searched the internet and found a 2019 Jayco Melbourne Prestige 24KP  and after careful thought we sent a deposit and then picked it up in Bakersfield June 3.  Its cozy but way more spacious than the van and we can pull our car.  This is going to give us much more flexibility on the road and help when Paul wants to work and Duke and I need somewhere to hang out.

We had our first quick trip in it to San Jose where we parked in front of Stephanie’s new home and spent the weekend moving her in.  We did take a break and enjoyed Saturday with the kids and went to one of Paul’s favorite activities, Roaring Camp Railroad.

 

The RV worked wonderfully and today when we got home we set it up for towing.  Paul got it all ready and we hopped in for a test ride.  First mistake!  Lots of noise!  Something is not right!  We get out and the hitch has come undone from the RV and the hitch is shoved up under the RV!

If you look closely to the bumper below the taillight you can see a memory making mark!  After some forward and back movements  in both the Car and the RV and a large hammer we got it disconnected and hooked up correctly and the test drive went well.  We are on our way to Canada in July.

Paris revisited

May 13th, 2019

 

Mont St Michel

May 11th, 2019

Mont St Michel

The Beaches of Normandy

May 9th, 2019

The site of the invasion was very different than that day.  These days the beaches are very quiet and used for recreational use very much in the summer.  The cemetaries were beautiful.  To know what this area went thru is very moving as well as the effort to regain France to the French.  The people here will never forget even if we do as time goes by.  I found it interesting although it definitely felt very different than how I felt the first time I saw Pearl Harbor when I was 21.  

Omaha Beach 2019,  beautifully preserved with memorials abound.

Paul takes in the view of Omaha from a soldiers perspective.

The bunkers from outside.  They are deteriorating but being kept alive for all to visit and learn about what the war meant.

 

Bayeux

May 8th, 2019

What a special little town, Bayeux  right in the middle of the action of WWII.  We spent several days here and really enjoyed the town, food and sites.

Tapestry

This was our patio at our B&B hosted by Jonna who treated us to breakfast in her home each morning and transported us to town often.  It was about 2 miles outside of town and some days  we walked as we needed to work off some of the fine cuisine.  We had crepes in more than one way and of course the croissants and latte’s.

The town as well as most of Normandy was getting prepared for the 75th anniversary of DDay.  The store fronts were welcoming all who had a part of the war.  The people here seemed very appreciative of the effort of the allies in getting their home returned to France.  

 

 

Flanders Fields

May 7th, 2019

From 1914 to 1918, Flanders Fields was a major battle theatre on the Western Front during the First World War.   Today, the peaceful region still bears witness to this history through its monuments, museums, cemeteries and the countless individual stories that link it with the world.

We took an all day bus tour of the area and learned so much about a war I never even thought about.  These people fought to save their country while whole cities were being destroyed.  Bruges had no destruction while Ypres only about 30 miles away was completely destroyed.  Ypres has been rebuilt exactly as it was using some of the salvaged materials.  It looks just as old as the other cities we have seen.  A million soldiers from more than 50 different countries were wounded, missing or killed in action here.   A 4 year war that was fought within a very small region, where the battle lines went back and forth until the end.

Paul walking in the trenches

The Poppies are a symbol of Flanders Fields.  We were early so this all we got to see.  The color is spectacular.  Another interesting thing we learned is this is farm land and the farmers still to this day a 100 years later dig up shrapnel left from the battles.

A German bunker on Hill 60 a preserved battlefield.

Flanders Field American Cemetery and Memorial is a World War I cemetery on the southeast edge of the town of Waregem, . This is the only American World War I cemetery in Belgium and 411 American servicemen are buried or commemorated there.  The memorials in this area are abundant and so well kept.  They plant flowers annually in front of most of the gravestones.

I was not expecting much from this tour but by the end I was so impressed by the care that the Flemish people take to preserve this area and keep alive the battle that was fought to insure their freedom.  They are very appreciative of the efforts of all the Allies.

Off to Belgium again

May 5th, 2019

More beautiful buildings, cobbled streets and a very nice B&B right in the heart of this Medieval City. Bruges Belgium  the capital of West Flanders in northwest Belgium.   In the city center’s Burg square, the 14th-century Stadhuis (City Hall) has an ornate carved ceiling. Nearby, Markt square features a 13th-century belfry with a 47-bell carillon and 83m tower with panoramic views.

The two photos above are of The Markt of Bruges. A huge square with amazing buildings all around and fun restaurants were you were able to eat on the patio where the people watching was lots of fun.

The most important of Bruges’ towers stands 83 metres tall. The Belfry Tower has 47 melodious bells that on some evenings they have a concert, we missed it as they were doing repair work on the bells the days we were there, however I did climb the 366 steps to enjoy the views from above!

 

I had to buy some clothing as the weather just kept getting colder and colder!  New sweatshirt, scarf, mittens and hat.  I wore these until we got to Normandy!

We took another bike ride excursion to Damme Belgium along a canal and then of course another pub with another beer!  It was a short ride and our guide, Flavia was from Argentina with a masters degree in tourism who in 2018 was traveling in Europe and landed upon Bruges and stayed.  It was a great afternoon

Bruges was a tourist town but with so much to experience you didn’t ever feel as though it was just for the tourist.  We tried Mussels for the first time and truly enjoyed them.  Bruges is not cheap but so beautiful, and they have chocolatiers everywhere!