Uncategorized

Belize. New Adventures. And New Ideas!

Well, we landed at the airport in Belize City, and our ride, his name was Eli, from Table Rock Jungle Resort was out front holding our sign.. (newbie newbie newbie!) ha-ha.

Christine Cotton set us up with a ride to Table Rock Jungle Lodge outside of San Ignacio; I had to make a short side trip to the rental car company to pick up our cell phone and our package for our dive boat. All in all? Painless

We rode for about 2 hours (or thereabouts) to Table Rock, where we were welcomed and were escorted to our lodge. WOW. It was more than we could have asked for. It was beyond any expectations I had. And I wasn’t sure what I had. But looking at the poverty on the way to the Lodge, I had concerns. We went to the dining room where me met several other folks from all over. The tales were wonderful, and the people even more so.

Jungle Boogie

Jungle Boogie

I had a couple of rum drinks, and listened to the folks tell their stories of where they were from and who they were. The dining room is an open hut with a thatched roof that does not leak.. Even in these incredible downpours. It is beautiful in its way. The two owners here Allen and Colleen have hit the nerve of this land. Table Rock Lodge is primitive enough to be adventurous, fun, beautiful, exciting, and civilized enough to be truly wondrous.

Jungle Lodge - Erick and Lynda

Jungle Lodge – Erick and Lynda

Table Rock Jungle Erick and Lynda

The next morning we woke early when Lynda told me about her goof up. She grabbed the wrong battery charger for her camera. Oops. And we were heading for the ATM cave tour, where they warn you. You will get wet. Now, when I hear that statement in the USA, I think, some “splashy splashy” from some rain or from water in the creek or something yada yada yada… and no cameras allowed. The reason? Some tourist was holding a camera over a pot and dropped it, shattering the pot. No more cameras. The Belizeans are very particular about keeping their archaeological sites as pristine as possible.

Now, when the Belizeans tell you that you are going to get wet? You are swimming… literally, in caves. Tight spots. In caves. Running creek. In caves. (Did I mention that I am claustrophobic?) Well, off we went. Had to cross 3 rivers some chest deep in cool water.. “Refreshing “ as Emile put it. “Cool” in my words… “YEEHAW!” in Lynda’s words. Which brings up a point. Lynda hasn’t stopped smiling since we arrived. I was worried that the abject poverty of a third world country would somehow diffuse her light. It made it brighter. Her smile is extraordinary, and her spirit is a flame. Such a true joy to watch

So, we hop into the ATM cave where you have to swim in. All the while I have little voices in the back of my head saying, “What happens if we get a flash flood”? Which they just had a few days earlier… but off we went. Our guide, Emil, was full of super cool information about the Mayans and their belief system, the cave formation, and of the biology inside the cave. Emil holds a degree in biology and works locally for a group that are studying the biological systems within Belize. Very smart guy. And loves to rock climb. But I digress

We enter into the cave, dropping low and getting skinny to get in. Tight spaces, and claustrophobia? Screw it; I am having a BLAST… what super cool places to get into. We drop into larger caverns and more education. Stalactite formations, eons of erosion, collapses, and water course changes. But I am fascinated with these caves. Lynda still can’t wipe the smile off her face.

We begin to get back into the caves, and we start finding pottery, still left where the Mayans in 700AD or so originally left the pottery. Deeper we go, testing the darkness by turning off the lights and just taking in the cavern. Into the river again, up into a creek, back down into a river.

A note here, If you are not in shape? You couldn’t do this tour, no question about it. It takes some climbing, twisting, swimming, and some nerve to find your way back to the bone-yards. Yes, the guess in human sacrifices that were meant to help whatever problem the community had at the time. G

Guesses were lack of rains, crop failures, and a host of other issues that needed desperate measures. And the assumption was that since those didn’t work, the civilization broke down and dispersed. These were educated guesses supported by what science could glean from mythology, beliefs, and evidence. All very interesting, and our guide, Emil was full of incredible stories and information.

Christine Cotten? Our  travel agent for this adventure? She simply ROCKS. This was one of the coolest things I have had the privilege to see in my lifetime. Belize? So far, outstanding. It is a country that is beautiful in it’s own right. The people have been friendly, and everyone here is soft-spoken, even the tourists (us) as the land is quiet. My ears are truly enjoying the quietness and peace that the jungle exudes. This, I believe, will prove to be one of our greatest adventures yet.

Ladies? I think I am fulfilling my part of the bargain, I hope this adventure gives you gals something to chat about. You the reader(s) will have to read our blog, “2 days and counting” to understand this part.

Next stop? Tikal in Guatemala.

Categories: Adventure, Adventure Travel, Backpacking, Camping, Downhill Skiing, Family, Hiking, Hot Tubbing!, Living Passionately, Love, Reconnection, Religious, RV Travel, Scuba, Ski, Spiritual, Uncategorized | 4 Comments

BreckenFRIDGE

Well, day number something since we landed in Breckenridge, and WOO HOO!  We have been having a blast.. Today was the exception… Last night it dropped to -17 degrees and our water froze up, despite my proactive work. insulate hose twice, space heater in wet bay where the tanks are, and temperature gauges in those bays so that I can tell if it gets too cold. Well, it wasn’t enough. Long story short, I will be buying another water hose and make sure it is just long enough to get to the bay, and insulate/heat tape the entire hose. It will be a process, but necessary. and it is -8 right now at 9:00 pm

But that is enough of the trials and tribulations. Today was EPIC… the sun came out about 10, and we made it to Keystone by 10:30.. on the mountain by about 11:30 and WOW… The snow was spectacular, the sun was out, and we stayed warm with our 5 layers of clothing… The skiing was the best we have had since we have been here. We even bounced through the “bumps.”

For those not familiar, skiers and snowboarders can find runs that have not been groomed by machines, and in the process create a LOT of “bumps” where the snow hills twist and turn, creating one hell of a way to get down a hill. Now, if you have short skis they can be fun.. but I ski on long wide 185’s which are quite long by any stretch. and when it comes to shaped skis, it makes them very fast but not maneuverable on “bumps”… but fun anyhow. Only a couple of “holy shit” moments.

But the rest of the day? Flying 2 inches off the ground in some very sweet snow.

Below is the view from the lift that is open

20131205_130343  20131205_130404

Below is a frozen creek, and us in the parking lot gearing up for the day

20131205_152651  20131204_093824

Keystone

20131205_165425

So today was a GREAT day, working on more.. Tomorrow? Hoping for more of the same.. will see. But the bottom line? We truly love the life we are living…

Life is good

life is good skiing

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Reload time in San Diego

Well, we made 3 months and 8,000 miles and are loving it… We have discovered a few things.. First and foremost we have missed our friends.. Secondly? We don’t miss California at all… We both used to enjoy the high energy of Southern California, but after 3 months of living in the mountains, and reconnecting with some nature, this simply is not for us.

We will be leaving San Diego around the 10th of October, heading for Aspen for some business meetings. Then settle in Breckenridge for the ski season, get our rig setup for being stationary for a few months during the winter.

After that? Belize for a month. This is one of those bucket list items we went a little overboard with. So spending our time down there with family, and then exploring the place, to see what Belize is all about.

We need to head to Florida and get our drivers licenses updated and do some other official items… then turn around and head to Alaska for some visiting/hiking/backpacking. Lynda has not seen a lot of AK, so I thought we would go up and show here around some of my old stomping grounds… should be fun. Hope to have my nephew and sisters join us at some point and enjoy part of the travel..

It has been a rocking journey so far, and we are really looking forward to the next adventure. and the next. and the next…

IMG_4319 IMG_4409 IMG_4504 Start on Deception IMG_4559 IMG_4569

Categories: Uncategorized | 3 Comments

Video’s of Our Backpacking Trips

These are two backpacking adventures that Lynda put to slide and music. Please enjoy.

Erick and Lynda

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Hiking with the NOLS ELLE group in the Wind River Mountains

We are back from our 6 day 5 night backpacking expedition in the Wind River Mountains near Lander, Wyoming.. My comment(s)?

Wow.

NOLS Start

NOLS Start

The landscape was breathtaking, the people that we hiked with were wonderful in more ways than we can count. The Llamas? A great asset, and a kink in hiking plans… you can’t go anywhere your Llama can’t go… but those beasts are able to go in some pretty crazy places.

IMG_3958

Ice field to get over the pass

IMG_3961

After climbing up an ice field that was significantly steep. about 60% grade or better.

IMG_3980

This was L7… Llama Advanced Training 7… and on the right side of Boodroe? Nothing but air.

IMG_3831

Then there was just serene beauty

IMG_3835

IMG_3836

more of the Wind Rivers.

IMG_3864

and hot women with Llama’s

IMG_3869

And rain moving in .

IMG_3887

and Bob giving a class!

IMG_3888

And the attentive class… the map and navigation was NOT to be missed.

IMG_3889

Stephen and Shari listening to Bob.

IMG_3891

Loading Llamas and Frank busting up. Anne and Stephen trying to get the Llama loaded.

IMG_3904

Just another beautiful view

IMG_3918

Bob, dammit, I said THAT way…

IMG_3936

another informative class.

IMG_3952

Chris checking out the lay of the land

IMG_3956

Gotta feed the help.

IMG_3958

Chris and Teton going up the ice field.

IMG_3961

Boodroe, back in the saddle.

IMG_3962

Chris just relaxing after a small hike

IMG_3965

and us, laughing at the challenge….

IMG_3981

Boodroe? Don’t step back…. it’s a LONG way down

IMG_3982

The pay off

IMG_3994

Stephen keeping the altitude sickness at bay..

IMG_4017

What a classroom

IMG_4034

Frank getting ready to boogie wit da Llama!

IMG_4039

what a GRAND time to have

IMG_4086

Cooking time in the kitchen

IMG_4089

Instructors, Bob, Shari, Chris in their kitchen

IMG_4099

Stephen, ready for ANYTHING

IMG_4100

Shari finally loses it….

IMG_4104

A neighbor.

IMG_3838

Da river… one of many many rivers and ponds and lakes.

IMG_3843

Bob is ready to go

IMG_3844

Chris, Frank, Boodroe.. ready to hit the trail again

IMG_3861

Still smiling… gotta love this gal

IMG_3885

The fagawe tribe, cause they dunno where the fugawe!

IMG_3886

What? Who? Where?

IMG_3908

Bob waiting patiently

IMG_3909

Stephen and Frank, dueling politics…

IMG_3930

More class work.. who said hiking was easy?

IMG_3940

More scenery

IMG_3949

Giddyap little dogie.. uh… Llamie. uh Oh HELL whatever, get moving!

IMG_3964

Can we breathe now? Seriously sucking wind

IMG_3969

Rain moving in

IMG_4003

Bath time!

IMG_4007

4 days into it and STILL looking good

IMG_4014

More classes

IMG_4015

Bob enjoying the scenery

IMG_4013

And this is how you do the hokey pokey

IMG_4028

The mighty fish slayer returns

IMG_4019

Troy and Bob swapping fish stories

IMG_4026

Yummy fish!

IMG_4056

Heading back

IMG_4061

IMG_4060

on the way back

IMG_4082

we have a HIGHWAY to hike down now.

IMG_4077

Gotta remember this

IMG_4094

Stephen writing in solitude

IMG_4106

on the road again

IMG_4107

IMG_4111

IMG_4109

IMG_4115

IMG_4112

IMG_4110

IMG_4117

IMG_4116

IMG_4118

IMG_4114

IMG_4113

IMG_4122

IMG_4121

IMG_4124

IMG_4119

IMG_4120

IMG_4127

IMG_4129

IMG_3841

This was an executive leadership program to help reconnect what is missing from our lives and disconnect from our lives.. To remember the beauty that surrounds us, and what we must return to from time to time to remember that there is more to life than just “things”… To live simply, to risk safety, to reconnect with a world that most of the world seems to have forgotten.

Let us hope the lessons and adventures we experienced on this trip be remembered as we return to our lives and that somehow we can share this experience with our friends and colleagues.. Perhaps we can inspire them to reach out to a way of life that echos in the human genome.

Erick and Lynda Carpenter

IMG_4102

Categories: Uncategorized | 2 Comments

And we are off

Well, a few weeks into our road trip FOR a lifetime, and the fun we have had.. and some interesting learning curves… We started off by enjoying the Hudson family reunion in Grand Junction, Colorado,

Image

followed up by our start with Ouray, Colorado,

Image

Then on to Salt Lake City where we picked up my nephew, Garrett Taylor.. (Mike Taylor and Ellen Taylor, we cannot thank you enough for letting us have him for some quality time)…

Image

Then we descended on Yellowstone where we spent a 3 day 2 night back packing trip in Hell’s Roaring River area, and also did a few other spiffy hikes in and around Yellowstone.

Image

Image

Image

and of course, “Butt Pucker Creek” where we forded the river to get to the other side for our camp site.. wondered if any of us were going to go swimming with our packs… and on that note, we did learn that if you are going to cross a swift moving river, unclip your waist strap and your upper harness in case you have to release your pack. (Thank you forest service video BEFORE we went on our backcountry hike).

We had our own beach for the day.

Image

and after a nights rest, we hiked back to our truck… two nights, three days, and it was fun

After that we trekked on to the Tetons

Image

Found some nice day hikes around String Lake (thanks Danny) and found Hidden Falls trail… not so hidden as it was loaded with people. and we discovered that if you want to get away from the people, you are going to have to do a 20+ mile hike to do it. There are some GREAT trails there, but you are talking 4 day jaunts that we didn’t think we were up to.. Day hikes are nice, but busy with people.. I think we enjoyed Yellowstone more than the Tetons.

We sat around and discussed what we wanted to do and Garrett thought that Mt Rushmore would be cool, so off we went. We stopped by Devils Tower, Wyoming, and wow, incredible country side and the Tower itself was very impressive.

Image

The day hike (1.4 miles) around the Tower was very cool.

Now we are in Spearfish, South Dakota so I can catch up on some maintenance on the rig, and so Lynda can do some work. We found a park here in Spearfish managed by the city, and it is gorgeous.. cannot recommend it enough. On one side note, the Sturgis rally is about to kick off. and bikers are converging on every town near Sturgis.. should prove to be interesting.

Now, all the side notes to things learned. We replaced our tires in Salt Lake City and I discovered that they did not replace the stem core’s in the stems. and crap often gets loose inside the tire (dust and whatnot) that makes the core jam and leak… so if you get your tires replaced, plan on replacing stem cores.. not a big deal, just a learning curve

Next item. we are still scratching our heads. We pulled into a gas station, filled up and Lynda hit the ignition… nothing. nada. zip, zilcho… and we noticed the transmission shifter flashing odd numbers. Well, Lynda the logical one digs through the Allison Transmission manual and we discover that our oil in our transmission is too cold.. WTF? that makes zero sense… but that is the code that is flashing… So after a about a half hour of trying to start the rig, we gave it 15 minutes hit the ignition and WALLA! we have engine roaring… So I checked the oil level and it was low.. not critically so, but low just the same… so figured out how to add oil to the tranny and we were off again.

We pulled into Spearfish and I have figured that is the time to do minor maintenance stuff… so here we sit, having an absolute ball, and our nephew is enjoying the time… Never, let me repeat this, never in a gazillion years did I ever see this coming… Sometimes life smacks you between the eyes… and sometimes it hands you a dream…. As we have been handed both over the past decade, never did I think that it would be better than anything I could have imagined…..

 

Road trip FOR a lifetime…

Twenty years from now, you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bow lines, sail away from safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails.

Explore. Dream. Discover.

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

and the countdown continues… 8 days and a wakeup

I have to laugh, I can remember so many times in the US Marines getting what was referred to as a “short timers syndrome”. In the Corps you were always getting “short”. Short on a tour in combat, short in boot camp, short in the “Suck”, and endearing term of the US Marines that only a Marine can truly understand.. but I digress.

Lynda and I are leaving San Diego in eight days. We are headed for Colorado for her family reunion, in our 39′ Newmar Kountry Star diesel pusher, towing our 1996 Toyota Land Cruiser behind it.

IMG_2073

And it dawned on me last night that a LOT of people had no idea that we purchased our motor home to travel in as well as live in. We have had some challenges over the years, as we bought our home in Poway during the peak of the real-estate boom, and were doing fine until Lynda was diagnosed with breast cancer. at that point, things changed…

After several years and some very scary treatments, we had several epiphanies. One was that we could afford Lynda’s treatments or the home, but not both. That was a very simple no-brainer. I can live without a house. I cannot, will not, live without Lynda, so that choice was easy. We gave up the house and moved into a condo in Poway. There we had another cancer scare and my younger sister asked me “What would I do if I lost Lynda?”

I had never even considered the possibility that she could lose the fight. I teared up and told Daonne that I would probably buy a motor home and disappear. Go skiing, hiking, scuba diving but generally leave society indefinitely… Later on, Lynda and Daonne got on that topic of conversation, and Lynda approached me. She stated that if I would do that without her, why don’t we do it together instead? And the “road trip for a lifetime” was born.

Yes, we thought we were just short of insane, but you know what? We haven’t been this excited about life in several years. The idea that we can make a living on the road, and travel the US just resonates with us. While we are not looking forward to leaving our friends here in San Diego, we are VERY excited about all the possibilities that are fast approaching. So for those wondering? We have been planning this lifestyle for quite some time. When mortality slaps you in the face you have two choices… Get busy living, or get busy dying. We choose the former.

So with that, in July, we pick up our nephew, Garrett, in Salt Lake Cityand head to Yellowstone and the Grand Tetons for some back packing adventures.. Then we take him to Denver, drop him off, and return to the Wind River mountains in Wyoming for a 6 day backpacking trip with NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School) and learn a bit about leadership and serious backpacking.

In August we will check out South Dakota and see the Mt. Rushmore National Park. Lynda has a fascination with that memorial, and I too would like to see what it is all about. While I may have lost my belief and confidence in our current government, I have not lost my love for my country. However, on this subject, I will not mar a nice post with my political rantings.. Those I save for Facebook! HA!

Our destination after that becomes unclear, as we have a couple of options that we are exploring. Turn left and go do some bucket list hikes in the Northwest, such as Mt Rainier, and the Three Sisters in Oregon, along with the Redwoods and Yosemite as well as Sequoia National Park.

After that we have a month (Christmas!) in Belize planned (still a work in progress). We will start off with a week on a live aboard dive boat, the Sundancer II where we will take advantage of the training we are doing this week with Ocean Enterprises. We are getting our advanced open water dive along with Nitrox certification so that we can dive up to 5 times a day versus 3 times a day in Belize. It will also allow us to dive the Blue Hole at depths around the 80-100 foot level.

photo

The following week will be spent with family in a 3 bedroom condo in Belize that Deb Bennett is renting us for that week… She also turned us on to Christine Cotten who is a travel agent she lives down there. She is the one that gave us the idea for the live aboard and a few others… and this trip is still a work in progress. This will be an entire month down there.

That brings up another major shift for us. The reason behind a month in  Belize is that we have a BOATLOAD of air miles on our Alaska Airlines credit card. and we could get to Belize for FREE, but the problem was the dreaded “black out dates” during Christmas. I looked and looked and looked at how we could get down there for a week without spending a bunch on plane tickets when Lynda popped off with “Well, why don’t we just go down for a month?” My jaw dropped and the brain clicked as brain cells connected.. As long as we have internet connection? We can work from anywhere. Sooooo Belize it is.

When we complete our trip in Belize, and get back to the US, our intent is to spend the ski season in Breckenridge. Our intent is to buy two EPIC passes for the season and ski our little fanny’s off. At some point we will head to Florida probably Key Largo and enjoy some diving until May-ish where we will head back to the Southwest, and pick up my two sisters and my nephew and head to Alaska via the west coast.

People ask exactly how can we afford this? and our answer? We are no longer shelling out BIG house payments, and our “rent” at our friend Lori’s home has been very reasonable. When Lynda was first diagnosed in 2006 with cancer? We racked up some HUGE debt treating it. We blew through our savings, our investments, lost our house and had to downsize dramatically. However, while our house went through foreclosure we took every penny we weren’t spending on the home and paid off our debt. As rough as it was to lose our home which we dearly loved, paying off our HUGE medical debt was an incredible relief.

And side note here. I spent 4 years trying to work with Wells Fargo to come to a payment that we could afford while treating Lynda’s cancer.. I did not ask for any reduction in the principal, nor any special deal, just refinance it so that we could continue making payments while she was being treated. I cannot begin to tell you how stressful that was, or how relieved I was when I finally threw up my hands and told them fine.. “You want it so bad? Come and get it”. The banks inability to work with us was mind numbing. By a simple refinance at the interest rates that were available at that time, we could have easily continued paying for it.. Ah well, seems that in the long run? I like our current home with wheels MUCH better.

Over the past few years we have scrimped and saved and have rebuilt our savings. Not having a large rent or house payment has helped that. We cannot thank Lori enough for her help. So being able to work remotely enables us to earn a living on the road, AND live our lives on our terms. We have had a couple of pretty nasty scares, and with that, have determined that we would rather have a life of adventures than just wish we could…

For all of you following our story, THANK YOU. We hope to use this blog as a means of sharing our lives, and the adventures we are about to dive into. We hope you find it inspiring, entertaining, funny, and whatever else may come along. So please, sit back, read on, and enjoy the ride.

happy trails

Categories: Uncategorized | 3 Comments

A month… a MONTH in Belize

Well, this Christmas is looking pretty spectacular.. Not only are we going to Belize for a MONTH, but it looks like we are also going to commit to staying on board a “live aboard” yacht that specializes in Scuba Diving for 7 days!

So for 7 days we will be on the Sun Dancer II Not only that, but we are also going to get Nitrox dive certified which means instead of diving 3 dives a day we can do as many as 5 dives a day. And go deeper… longer… while in the middle of a bucket list dive.. I cannot thank Christine enough for her suggestions and helping us set this up… (This is an unashamed plug for her, as a travel gal, she ROCKS)

Balance that with the fact that our wedding anniversary is the 22nd of December? and top that off with my family coming in the day after our 7 days and WOW.. It just doesn’t get much better. Except that with any luck, my entire family will be dive certified and we can go out for a family dive or two..

woot woot!

In the meantime, our plans are fluid, adjusting our trip as we can and should. Included is a current map and plan of our adventure so far, all subject to change at a moments notice. I am dumbfounded, but thrilled… the road trip of a lifetime starts in 17 days… But who’s counting?

6-12-2013 12-46-04 PM

Categories: Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Happy Trails

Well, another weekend has passed, and with that, some small accomplishments. We went on a hike with some friends on Saturday, up a hill we used to do each Saturday. It is called Iron Mountain and is a 6-7 mile round-trip hike with about a 1000-foot elevation climb to it. A nice hike but tends to be hot this time of year.

For a while, I was running it, where you run what you can, and hike fast what you cant. And did that for a season.. I have discovered that when you slack off , you pay for it… and we did.. Lynda has a pretty good blister on her heel and I am still feeling my legs… waaaaa… but it was fun to be with friends again, and get some decent exercise.

We also pulled everything out from underneath our rig, and purged once again… We have 3 more totes we are going to try to fit into our storage box.. That should prove to be interesting. And with that, some realizations, and once again, I find myself tap dancing in a minefield. While listening to AC/DC

Let me explain. We have Lynda’s mom and dad’s ashes with us, as well as some of my mom’s ashes that I intend to keep.. She is safely tucked away in a Folgers Gourmet coffee can. You see, when she knew her time was ending, she decided she would do the hard part for us kids and call around to cremation sites… There, she chatted with a fellow that told her that for about a 1000.00 they could cremate her and that for another $350 to several thousand dollars, we could purchase an urn..

She pretty much said “What? Why so much?” “Why cant they just take me home in whatever I come out in?” and his response was something like “That would hardly be appropriate”. And she again responded, “What do I care? I’m gonna be dead”! “Hell you could put me in a coffee can for all I care, and wait, wait, that’s IT!  A Folgers coffee can is PERFECT!”.. “But make it a Gourmet blend can”…. And so a smattering of her ashes remains there.

Then there is the other container… It holds my first wife’s ashes.  Connie. I had originally tried spreading some of her ashes in Key West, and for me, that was an emotional disaster. Later, when Lynda and I remarried, I released some in Kauai, and that was healing to a degree. However the bulk of her ashes remain in my keep. So that would be the minefield that I dance through, an emotional and spiritual one.

And that is the tip of the emotional iceberg. You see, I lost Connie to pancreatic cancer, and we all know that Lynda came dangerously close with her diagnosis of breast cancer back in 2006.

I can honestly say that on this planet, there is nothing save one thing that I truly fear. I lost all fear of death; there is no man on the face of this planet since my DI’s that could instill any sense of fear in me… I will face my death as I have faced my life, on my terms.

However, the thought that I could have lost Lynda is something that shakes me to my core. And the fact that we came close makes me guard her even closer…. So to spread my Connie’s ashes is quite the little dance… and in that, one I have successfully avoided since 2001.

And that explanation may give you some insight as to the reasoning behind our decision to travel. While Lynda has dodged the bullet that cancer tried to hit her with, neither of us know what the future holds, a long life or a bombing at a marathon I happen to be running in.

We made the choice to go live our dreams our “picture perfect life” while we still can. And while many of you may not be able to make that kind of a choice, may we suggest that you start on your bucket list items now, before something tragic happens… before you can’t.

And this is something I live by every day, without fail. I tell Lynda  exactly how I feel, every morning when I get up, and every night when I go to bed. I make it a point for her to know exactly what she means to me every moment of every day. Shit happens folks, and other that right here right now, there is no guarantee that there will be a tomorrow. So make it a point to tell those you love how you feel… every chance you get…

Here is to Happy Trails… from us to you all. Make it the best trail you can.

happy trails

Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

And the education begins…

Lynda and I spent the day at Iron Mountain, short hike to see if our backpacks worked or not, and how much work we were going to have to do to get into backpacking/hiking shape. All things said and done, it all worked out well. Short 3 mile jaunt with about 20 pounds or less in weight in the packs… just enough to see how it would lay on the back and hips.

IMG_2666

Lynda still has her port in her chest from her prior cancer treatments (left it just in case we need it again, and the fact that she has crappy veins in her left arm). so we wanted to be sure that it didn’t push or rub anywhere on that spot. and we were successful.

Then the fun part, we went to REI and blew through a serious roll of cash getting gear for our road trip for a lifetime, now scheduled departure date is June 28th. We will be going to her family reunion in July, then a month of meandering before we end up in the Wind River Mountain range doing a NOLS course to familiarize ourselves with long hikes, and to meet some seriously cool people.

Our intent is to hit Ouray, Co.

533

and Moab, UT,

800px-USA_Arches_NP_Delicate_Arch(1)

and then toodle our way up to the Tetons and spend some time there before ending up in Lander, Wyoming. Once there, we meet with the team and press on to a 1 week executive development wilderness expedition that NOLS facilitates.

We are using it to gain knowledge of long hikes, so that later, when we do the west coast, we will be better prepared for our hikes around the 3 Sisters in Oregon, John Muir Trail in Yosemite, and around Mt. Rainier in Washington.

And so the RoadTrip FOR a Lifetime begins…. Woo HOOO

Categories: Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Blog at WordPress.com.

What a Ride

Growing up in the 70's 80's and 90's

Laura K Spencer

Igniting Awe in Learning and Leading

1 in 8 Thrive!

Food and Lifestyle for Women with Breast Cancer

Pink Tank Scuba

The Underwater Adventures of PT Hirschfield (click a story below)

Live Laugh RV

Our Next Chapter

Storytime with John

Pull up and listen...I've got a funny one for ya...

The Boho Chica

Experiencing the world in cultures, cuisines & hiking trails

Bob Schoultz's Corner

What's Bob been thinking about?

For the Love of Wanderlust

Instilling a sense of wanderlust

Ramblin' On

Roamin' Around in a Rock Star Bus

Pura Vida! eh? Inc.

Free discounts for Costa Rica day tours

I'm Still Breathin'

... my awakening through cancer

Digital Mastery

Road Trip, not for the timid...