Musings & adventures

A Drive and Sorbet

Green Apple and Calvados sorbetWe went for a little drive in our “new to us” car and stopped for a light meal that included this amazing Green Apple and Calvados sorbet (I want to return to try the Strawberry and Basil sorbet!). What a gorgeous and hot day! Perfect for a drive with the top down and a cold pudding :)

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Revisiting Blue Bell Woods

On our taxi ride back from the airport we saw them out of the corner of our eyes. Splashes of blue. The bluebells were out in force. That meant we needed to get out again to see them. This time, it was a visit to Philipshill Wood in Chorleywood.

On the motorcycle ride out, we caught glimpses of several dense pockets. I gasped at the sight of some of them. A mere sample of what was to come once we entered the wood. A few words come to mind with this phenomenon. Stunning. Breath taking. Amazing. This truly is an incredible and remarkable natural display. We hiked in, found a clear spot and just sat under the beech trees with their new leaves amongst the blue haze. The sun dappling through the canopy.

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Whirlwind Trip “Home”

We are back home in the UK after an intensely busy and short visit home. The first few days involved taking an English friend around Pittsburgh and the surrounding area. I can’t tell you how much fun it was showing and talking about why I love the city and Pennsylvania in general. I was a cheerleader and it started to ignite that kernel of excitement of moving back and thinking about what’s next. Although, you can see my priorities when the top “sights” on my list involved food. We’ve gone months without good Mexican food, pizza, wings and pancakes. We ended up not eating a single meal at home, making sure to get our fill of favorites.

The other big reason for being home? My younger brother’s wedding! He and his new bride are currently honeymooning in Scotland * waves at them to the north! * The wedding itself went off smoothly, once the priest arrived, being an hour late in starting. It was the perfect storm of traffic situations. We had a great time at the ballroom dancing fueled wedding, catching up with family and friends, and getting a few “blasts from the past” from some people I haven’t seen in over a decade. As a wedding gift, I painted a couple rooms in their new house, painting is my thing.

So as per so many recent entries, I have much to blog about and many photos forthcoming. I just need to recover a bit from this jet lag. Neither of us slept on the flight in, a redeye on Monday night. I usually can fall asleep during take off, we fly so much. But not this time. This followed by a night of little sleep. It’s always harder to recover from jet lag flying from the US to the UK.

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Day Three: Pancakes and Painting

Buttermilk pancakes! I make really awesome ricotta pancakes, yes.  But, buttermilk is not a common thing to find in the UK, so while home, it is important we eat buttermilk pancakes to get our fill. We took our British friends out to our favorite diner and had load of pancakes and other sweet breakfast goodies you just don’t see served in England. A good way to end their whirlwind tour of Pittsburgh, hopefully we didn’t inadvertently put them into diabetic coma’s for the long drive back to New York City.

After saying our goodbyes, I took my friend up on her offer to help me with the wedding gift I was giving my brother and his soon to be new wife. Painting rooms in his new house. It is something that I do love to do and can’t think of a better gift for them. I was worried I wasn’t going to have enough time on this trip home to get all that I wanted to get done done. She is awesome. She helped me get one room done. We were there until midnight. And in our innovative and avant garde style, apparently spent hours painting in relative darkness by the light of a small halogen desk lamp. My new sister in law must think I/we are completely insane. She came in with a lamp from another room and the difference in lighting was, well, like the difference between night and day. At least it was good to get a good look at the paint coverage before cleaning up for the night.

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Day Two Of Tour: Fallingwater

The second day of the tour and it’s more about south western Pennsylvania.  It was a mini road trip to Fallingwater.  Frank Lloyd Wright’s masterpiece of a home for the Kaufman family set IN the rocks of the hillside, set over the water of the stream below.  This was my second trip here and it’s just as awe inspiring as it was the first time.

After the historic piece of architecture we drove nearby to a couple waterfalls at Ohiopyle.  First off were the Ohiopyle Falls, made up of the Youghiogheny River taking a twenty-foot fall with a roar.  It looks different in every season.  With it being spring, there was a great volume of water rushing over the falls.  On the road back home we stopped at Cucumber Falls, one of the higher and more elegant veils of water.  Water, rock, forest.  A theme for the day, no?

Dinner involved yet another delicacy we can’t get in the UK: buffalo wings from Fat Heads in the South Side. Oh, sweet, sweet, spicy parms! How I have missed you! It is still shocking to my own ears, having been a vegetarian for ten years, hearing myself announce my own cravings for beer and wings at Fat Heads!

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Tour Of Pittsburgh: Day One

The next few days I played tour guide for a friend for their first trip to this city.  The tour of Pittsburgh started off with the West End Overlook. This, IMHO, is the superior overlook in and of the city. You get that incredible “head on” view of The Point and the three rivers. You get a better sense of how close nit the down town area is relative to other cities due to the topography of the region. And, well, it’s just prettier. It also happens to right up the hill from my childhood home in the West End (well, Elliott really), where my parents still live. I took my friend to my old street and home and briefly chatted with my dad. I ruminated over how I used to know every single neighbor. Childhood and family friends have mostly moved away. It’s not the same cul de sac of my youth.

I continued the tour with the classic explosive view you get from the Fort Pitt Bridge, I went a little out of the way to make sure we drove through the tunnel for that stunning view. We drove into Oakland where we strolled through the Nationality Rooms of the Cathedral of Learning. Pausing to admire the Gothic style architecture in the main hall, my teacher friend and I compared the differences in education systems between the U.S. and the U.K. We had rather different experiences in University.

We walked through South Oakland to indulge in a favorite of mine for lunch. Burritos at Mad Mex. This was the first trip of many on this trip home. I never get tired of my favorite: the chick pea chili burrito with sour cream and guac. I know everything on the menu is good. But I always get that burrito. Anytime I order anything else, I always wish I had just gone with the chick pea chili burrito. I make a fairly spot on facsimile, having teased apart and experimented with the recipe a dozen years ago or so. If only I could find tomatillos here! But there is always something so much better about getting the dish there. Maybe it’s the ambiance or the sangria, but to me, that is the ultimate comfort food. A trip home would not be complete without it.

After lunch we visited more of my old stomping grounds and went to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History. I was interested in seeing the renovations that had closed down a significant chunk of exhibits for two years. To be honest, I was disappointed with the new exhibit and space. In an institution where space is at a premium to every department, there seemed to be a lot of it wasted.

After a brief visit to our home. Have I mentioned how I love to tell people what we payed for our awesome house with its hard wood floors, slate roof, 3/4″ inch thick plaster walls, so much sweeter in the context of U.K. housing prices. Dinner was a trip into Station Square for a little fondue. Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know the Melting Pot is a chain. But it appeals to me in so many ways. I love being able to have a little bit of a lot of different dishes and the “Big Night Out” sampler with a group of friends is an excellent way to do that.

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London Commuting

This is a post I’ve been meaning to post since February, but kept adding to it.

Deb on train into LondonAs I’ve been settling in to a regular schedule at work, I’ve had some time to reflect on the train and on commuting. I promise, I really don’t mean to sound trite when I say this, but, honestly, I feel like I’m getting the full Londoner experience. Before, when I wasn’t working, I spent a lot of time on my own, often not wandering far from my village. Only occasional jaunts into London where I felt like a tourist, like an outsider.

Now I feel like I am a part of that living, breathing, city machine, with its cogs that are in constant motion. It’s not a special trip, it’s just my way to get to work. Along the way there are the little details that make this ordinary activity special to me.

First I hop on to my local little train. It’s two train carriages long and takes ten minutes to travel to the station on the main line in Maidenhead. From there I catch any train heading inbound to Paddington, some being faster than others. Usually, I saunter off my local train right across the platform and have just a couple minute wait for the next train. Occasionally, I need to sprint across to a train waiting because my first train hesitated a second too long in getting rolling or failing catching that train, the next one arrives about twenty minutes later. This is part of what makes my commuting time into work fluctuate wildly.

Bourne End trainOne of my favorite parts of my morning commute involves looking down into the almost comically long and narrow back yards and seeing which ones seemed to be inspired by Ground Force. The ones with a rose arbor dividing the yard in two, the little painted garden sheds, the tastefully outfitted stone patios. They stand out between the ones that are simply long stretches of grass.

I am puzzled though, at the sheer numbers of trampolines in the yards. If my commute is at all a representative sample, England must be blanketed in trampolines. Mark and I joke about this all the time. There was an old SNL skit, Rob Lowe impersonating Stone Phillips on Nightline or some other hour long evening news shows with three twenty-minute vignette stories. Imagine in a serious voice, “Trampolines. Children’s play toy… or vicious back yard killer?” Although, most I see do have a “cage” around them to keep the kidlets from falling to their doom.

I imagine most other people get annoyed by fellow passengers having loud animated conversations on their cell phones or even with the person in the next seat. When we’re crammed in like sardines, you know everyone is listening in to that one fantastically loud person speaking. I actually enjoy listening to the spectrum of English accents out there. I can sit there staring at my book, all the while linguistically teasing apart the language in my mind. It took me a moment to realize that the two teenagers were not simply mimicking Katherine Tate’s character Lauren in an ironic manner, but rather, that was really the way they spoke. I smile to myself, adding further to my ruminations on language.

Then there’s the “Metro,” the daily paper that is made for the cars of public transport. I see them on trains and in the underground. It’s distributed in piles in the morning. It’s full of gossip pages and extremely brief news stories and reviews of movies and shows. Not a very meaty product but it serves its purpose well, to fill the short spans of time between stops with something to read or to read over someone’s shoulder in the cramped close quarters during the morning rush hour. A copy always seems to make it into work on the lunch table.

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Married Nine Years!

You heard me right, today is our ninth wedding anniversary. We have been together now for ten years!

This is where I start waxing philosophical. When we first decided to get married, I really felt like I had lived. I was out of university and had a job. I had experienced so much already. I had dated a lot; in that good way where one learns about what you want and expect out of a partner, what you expect of your self and more importantly, what you don’t want. I learned that good relationships, really good relationships worth keeping, are not difficult. When you find that person who fits so perfectly, it’s not work, it’s fun and relaxed. And every day is better than the day before. Every day reaffirms that I have chosen wisely.

Ten years on and I feel that I have only just started really living. This past year has brought on a newness and excitement to our relationship. We are both experiencing so much that is new. We’ve both commented a number of times in the months that we’ve lived here that we’ve been experiencing that “new relationship feel.” It’s warm, fuzzy, glowing, smiley feelings all around.

On the one hand, it feels like we have lived in England a long time, at the same time though, the time has flown by. The same odd passage of time is reflected in our marriage. Ten years is a long time, but it hasn’t felt like that much time has passed. In some ways we are still those kids, but we have grown, and changed together. We still fit together so perfectly. It’s hard to imagine life without Mark or before Mark. I honestly can’t imagine myself being anywhere else but by his side. Where ever he is, that’s home.

After a night of putting curlers in your hair, much giggling and other silliness, here’s to the next nine!

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Hiking: Hambleden Estate

Hambleden Hike: 2.6 mile hike  (back dated entry)

DSC_5406It’s just such a lovely sunny day out and what better way to take advantage of the weather than to go for another little ramble through the countryside. This walk took us up and around Hambleden Estate . We could see some areas that would be potential “Bluebell Woods” to visit once the flowers bloomed.

We encountered mobs of rabbits and the holes leading to their dens in the woods. In the nearby distance we heard the sounds of gun shots.  This estate is known for it’s game and the village store you can purchase anything from venison sausages made from estate deer to wild duck, pheasants and rabbits.

We are both easily amused taking photos that make us laugh, or make us look completely insane to the outside observer. I’m sure I looked particularly insane shaking my head back and forth to achieve the above image.

DSC_5316I nearly got myself stuck in a U shaped branch suspended over the meandering little stream. It was easy enough to get up onto and slide into the branches embrace. Getting out was another matter. Mark needed to come to my rescue. The water below me wasn’t deep, but I could imagine it wouldn’t be pleasant to fall into. Mark made it look easy after I was extracted from the position, he hopped up and even started to climb around. I just wouldn’t put my falling in out of the realm of possibility.

Halfway through the day we stopped at the Stag and Huntsman in search of food since we were getting hungry, we had just missed the cut off time for lunch. A break for a pint would have to do. Looking at the specials on the menu board, we could see that it is highly influenced by the game available from the area. A place we’ll need to revisit I think.

Complete photoset from the day

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A Page Out My History

scan132-EditOnce upon a time, or sometime in 1998, whichever comes first, deep in the wilds of Zelienople just north of Pittsburgh, our brave heroine encountered the rare diminutive water fountain lion, a distinct sub-species (Panthera leo aquafontanelle) in this particular micro habitat of city park land. She couldn’t believe her luck as the intrepid explorer stalked the elusive animal. She fortunately survived this brutal attack and lives to share her remarkable tale.

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Whirlwind Trip “Home”

The weeks home were, strange. Yes, it was wonderful to see our families and friends. Greenbean fell into all her usual habits and behaviors, sleeping on my pillow at night, although she does beg more than we had her trained. In the time we were home, we were busier than we ever were living there. We only ate two meals in the house, the rest involved eating out, whether with family, friends or coworkers. It was just so much. It didn’t feel like a vacation.

We both had an odd sense of home sickness. Home sick for England and the life and routines we’ve established there. I was made home sick for my little house seeing that it’s not being cared for the way I would care for it if I were there. Home sick for the U.S. as we start to dream about what’s next when we come back. This past year has flown by, making the coming year seem very short. Will we have enough time to do and see everything we want around England and other places in Europe?

All of a sudden it just seems like there is not enough time. We’ll have to make plans soon if we want see these things happen. I want to camp and hike in the Peak District and in Snowdonia, the Lake District and in Scotland. I want to dip my toes into the Atlantic Ocean from this side of the pond. I want to drive through the French countryside, have crepes at a cafe on the Champs E’lysee and float along the canals of Venice, or go to Tuscany to see the Palio di Siena (DiSiena is a name in my family tree). There is just so much.

There are more solid promises of visits from friends and family this coming year. Hopefully we’ll be able to combine some of the ideas of what we want to do with their visits.

For now, it feels so good to back to our little flat.

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Still No Luggage

We got an IM from the Baggage Express folks around 2:00 saying our luggage arrived in England.  I called and confirmed using the automated service.  I’ve been checking online to track our luggage. 

It’s 6:00pm Friday.  Still no luggage.  Still no sign of our luggage on the tracking system either.

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Trifecta of Flight F*** -Ups

Let’s recap. So, when we flew in this past December 16th, you may remember that it was the fourth time we’ve ended up driving from D.C. to Pgh due to our connecting flight having problems. Strike one for this trip.

Well. Fast forward to yesterday (Wednesday). All was going swimmingly. We showed up at the airport for our 7:32 flight to Chicago where we would have plenty of time to make our connection to London Heathrow. Over dinner we even remarked how lucky we were that the skies were perfectly clear. Weather could not be to blame. We were both perfectly tired and exhausted, planning on sleeping the entire red-eye.

Then came the announcement that the plane we were to be on was late leaving Chicago. Concerned, we went to the desk to check just how late. Late, but according to the customer service person, making our connection would still, “be doable.”

Then came the announcement that it would be an hour late, maybe a little more. We would not be able to make our connection. Strike two for this trip.

After much deliberation, we ended up staying at the Hyatt at the airport where the airline put us up for the night. We would be flying out at 6:20 am (Thursday) to Dulles, then on to London. It was either that or stay overnight in Chicago waiting for a 4:30pm flight. No Thank You. They assured us that our 200 lbs. of checked bags would be re-tagged and on our new flight. We asked about this EXPLICITLY.

We arrived safe and sound in London at 9pm instead of the expected 11am. At the baggage claim we waited. Ours were probably among the first bags put on the plane, maybe the last to come off and hopefully all together. We would feel better once we saw the first of our four bags. We waited. And waited. And waited. Until the turnstile stopped.

The punchline?

OUR BAGS ARE IN CHICAGO! Strike three.

Hopefully they’ll show up tomorrow.

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A Ticking Time Bomb

I am just amazed that I have not yet had a significant cold. At all. Since we’ve moved to England. Especially now that I have been regularly exposing myself to hundreds of people confined to small spaces in public transport. On the train and the underground I am surrounded by sneezing, coughing, sniffling individuals harboring some virus. Never mind all the traveling we’ve been doing too. Airports, other countries, more strangers and their respectively foreign bugs.

I’ve even been reading a virus-centric book on the train: The Invisible Enemy: The Natural History of Viruses. Which, given my not so secret fascination with reading about viruses, this book should come as no surprise.

Either my immune system is made of steel or I’m a ticking time bomb waiting to have an explosion out my nose.

My guess is it will hit when we travel back to the States for the holidays.

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Tree drama in the storm

We’re having a bit of tree drama at our home in Pittsburgh. I am patiently waiting for my brother to call back. In the aftermath of the storms and tornado warnings, there are lots of trees and branches are down in our neighborhood… a large branch blocking our front door. Initially, all I had heard is that a tree went down in our yard. Not too many candidates, all enormous, but particularly worrying is the super enormous 60 year old oak in our neighbor’s front yard. At least it didn’t land *on* the house (as far as I can say right now).

My brother hasn’t been at the house yet to survey the damage, he’ll be home soon though. I was IM’ing with a friend in New Jersey who was on the phone with her husband in Pittsburgh who was standing outside the house giving me the low down. Municipal tree service people were already working on our street, hopefully they’ll take care of this large branch.

Now I’m just waiting for the phone to ring. *taps fingers anxiously*

Edit: some friends went by the house to take some photos:

The tree was struck by lightning!

This was the branch, a big big branch:

The enormous tree:

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Why I love my husband reason #476

Some husbands bring home flowers or chocolates for their wives. Mine? He brings me a butterfly! A Peacock butterfly (Inachis io) he saw on his way home in this case, and wow did its feet tickle!

DSC_2304 DSC_2319

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Sights and Sounds of home

We’re home in Pittsburgh for a couple of weeks. Thunderstorms and lightning bugs are making me smile.

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Happy Anniversary!

Eight years! EIGHT YEARS! Can you believe we’ve been married for *eight* years today? We’ve been together for nine years. It really only seems like yesterday and a lifetime ago.

Look at those two kids in this photo from 1999 (we had just hiked through Muir Woods in California that day)

Who did they think they would be today? Where did they see us? I would have never guessed then we would be living abroad, we would be so happy and content with each other, that yes, life could be this good. Happy Anniversary to my sweetie!

Deb and Mark 1999

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Easter in London

We enjoyed Easter Enchiladas and Sangria out on the patio on this gorgeous day:

Easter Enchilladas and Sangria in London!

photo c/o Mark’s mom Sue

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Help me! I’m boxed in upstairs!

So, here I am, our shipment of our belongings has finally arrived and I’m under a pile of boxes and in a flurry of flying packing paper, I boxed myself upstairs.

We packed A LOT of stuff. It didn’t seem like all that much on the U.S. side. It’s all Mark’s clothes and suits… I haven’t even encountered a box of my own clothes :)

Plus I am convinced the movers grabbed and packed a bunch of random things out of our garage… we don’t need these hedge clippers or a tree pruner here. This is especially odd since we were there telling them what to pack from the neatly organized piles…

…and they packed things in strange ways. It seems some of our clothes were used a substitute packing material, providing padding around, say, the Kitchen Aid mixer in one box and some around a speaker in another. Or I would pull out some enormous ball of packing paper, unravel it to find four small spoons in the center. I know some of these boxes are already emptied, but the sheer quantity and mass of the packing paper leaves the box feeling heavy. I’ve had to double check a box or two just to make sure something isn’t still buried in there.

It really is like xmas morning. All these goodies to unwrap!

I was telling Mark how surprised I am at just how much this place feels like home. Even before we had any of our stuff here, it has just been a perfect comfortable fit. Now having our belongings here feels like icing on the cake.

Well, back to work, I need to dig my way out of here.

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I am in my renaissance

Our new place needs some things on the walls. I have photos and other bits coming in our shipment, but not enough to replace all the pieces of Chinese art and nostalgia that our land lord accumulated living in Hong Kong for 17 years.

The first art project, I call it “My Deconstruction of Klimt” :

Deconstruction of Klimt

I had a few 25 x 25 cm black canvases and metallic acrylics (gold, silver and copper) and some tape at my disposal (as well as a lovely box of 24 other acrylics). My first thoughts were of the rich golds and abstract forms within some of Klimt’s paintings. This, with the splash of red reminding me of the jewel tones so often included, I had the idea of extracting these impressions and putting them to canvas.

I particularly like the silver swirls on gold. I applied the thin lines heavily and on close inspection they look like appliqué ribbons. I had a lot of fun with the textures and causing different reflections depending on which way the brush strokes went. These photos really aren’t showing the texture differences. It depends are where you’re sitting and what type of light.

I have a more complicated idea percolating in my mind. Something that will certainly take longer and more planning than the couple of hours of cranking out geometric figures that “My Deconstruction of Klimt” took. But I think it will be a worthwhile pursuit.

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Packing Tangents

During this whole process of moving abroad and packing up the house, the tangents I find myself taking during the day are mind boggling.

As I’m cleaning out the study/office, working on the broader task of getting as much garbage out of the house on garbage day as possible. It’s amazing just how quickly and how much of my carefully sorted bits and nuggets of nostalgia don’t make the short list. “Everything must go,” is my mantra, as I stuff these things into the garbage or set aside for the good will pile.

Today, I found myself neatly organizing hundreds of photos into albums, getting wistful and walking down memory lane, giving albums titles such as, “The Adventures of Mark and Deb in Photographs, vol. 1”

And although I missed National Roll Your Change Week back in October, I gathered our jars and piles of coins and rolled over $140 of change. I also have a large mason jar jam packed with pennies that I plan to take to one of those cheesy coin processing machines as I have lost patience and interest, and am out of penny rollers, in rolling said pennies.

So much to do, and I’m playing with the minutia details of photos and coins.

Continue Reading »

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Road Trip to the Farm

This weekend was my first trip out to Four Quarters Farm located just over the Pennsylvania/Maryland border, with two of my girlfriends. This was also, incidentally, my first road trip in which I was doing the driving. My confession, since I have only had my driver’s license for a short time now, I’ve never driven the truck long distance and the longest I’ve driven anywhere in the car is an hour and a half. If Mark and I go anywhere together, he’s the one doing the driving, he is a driver and hates being a passenger with anyone. This drive was a really big deal for me.

Here follows a tale of adventure, of light and love and leaking power steering fluid:

Most of the drive in was uneventful highway driving, filled with music, laughing and conversation. We stopped to grab a bite to eat 2.5 hours into our three hour drive. I remarked, as we turned into the parking lot, about a weird sound the power steering pump was making, “Mark’s mom had the truck for a few months and had just had the power steering pump replaced.” (Or so I thought. )

We parked, had our Sheetz wraps and were ready to head out. Only, as I tried to back out, there was no power steering. Investigating under the truck, there was a significant puddle of fluid and a steady dripping right behind the driver’s side front tire. A few phone calls later to Mark and AAA and a chat with locals, we found ourselves at a gas station with a garage, that had closed about an hour earlier for the day, it was six o’clock.

The gas station attendant was as helpful as he could be. But really, Robyn, who is officially a rock star in my book, was on the ground under the truck getting covered in grease on the phone with her dad, who is a mechanic, talking her through what to do and detailing our options. Use automatic transmission fluid, a fluid that can be used in place of power steering fluid and is significantly cheaper and try to duct tape the leak.

As far as we could tell, the leak was from the reservoir itself and was too greasy for the duct tape to stick to it.

We decided on a strategy, we were not turning around, we bought all the automatic transmission fluid the gas station had. We would make our way to camp, stopping to check where the fluid levels were at a gas station before we separated ourselves from civilization.

The leak was so bad, that in a 25 minute ride, I was losing steering and something was starting to smoke under the hood. We refilled the reservoir, which was nearly completely empty, made it to camp, and decided to try to duct tape again in the morning after the reservoir was empty and not dripping.

When we arrived after dark to the camp site, we found the tent partially collapsed and filled with water. We set up a smaller tent in a friends camp around their fire and enjoyed wine, conversation and s’mores in the cold night air. We adjourned to another group of friends camp who had built a yurt, it was level and heated, but had a rodent infestation and was moldy. But it was wonderful that they shared their space with us and offered crash space for a warm place to sleep, “we have the option of sleeping here?” and a resounding, “hell yeah!” followed.

In the morning Robyn and Andrea took me on a walking tour of the Farm. I hadn’t realized what a tent city the place was. Sprinkled throughout the woods were the alters, personal and public, alter for Athena, alter for Ganesh, we passed the site of the Native American groups sweat lodge, the Stone Circle, the Coffee Dragon. I’m glad to have had a chance to see this place that has come to mean so much to them.

After breaking down the camp site and packing up the truck, we found the duct taping just wasn’t going to work. The steering takes a minute or two of driving before the power steering kicks in, for the pump to fill the lines with fluid, so the first bit of exiting from the camp site involved some of the most insane driving conditions ever. I’m passing through trees with only inches to spare on either side of my mirrors with no power steering. I’m pulling with both hands to get the wheel to turn. I’m proud of myself for this feat and was thinking how proud Mark would be of my handling this driving situation.

We had weighed our options, would we have the truck towed somewhere, we could stay another day but we couldn’t find a mechanic open on Sunday

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Buzzing with Organizational Bliss

So, in theory we’re moving to London soon. We don’t really need to be buying new furniture. I have been dutifully organizing our home into plastic storage bins. This has even included clothing.

We have lived in our home for seven years now and I have never had any of my clothing reside inside the confines of a dresser. I will, in the remaining weeks we are in our home, enjoy the organizational bliss of clothes storage that comes from the compartmentalization provided so lovingly by dressers. It’s been one of those, “so, why haven’t we done this sooner?” moments.

I spent Sunday and Monday assembling the roughly 500 pieces of Ikea’s Hemnes eight and six drawer dressers. Only needing minor assistance from Mark in lifting the heavy tops onto them.

Bask in the organizational glory that now swallows up baskets of clothing that had been residing on my closet floor.

I’m also quite pleased that they are all matchy matchy with the Hemnes bedside tables I’ve had for years.

Musings & adventures

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Cute and Spitty: A Mouse’s Life

It is with great sadness that I must report, the Teeny mouse has passed. This hasn’t stopped Bean’s obsession with my office and the empty tank the mouse inhabited. My innocent little Bean is a killer.

Greenbean
Musings & adventures

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