Archive for October, 2013

Night and Day

Day-And-Night-I woke up to the sounds of the tent being zipped or unzipped. As it turned out, it was being unzipped. Sarah and Alan had big news and wanted to get back to Garberville as soon as they could. Alan had proposed to Sarah some time yesterday, and Sarah had accepted. They wanted to get a rental car, so they could get back to Eureka and catch a flight back to Colorado.

The transformation in Sarah was like night and day. She had her bags packed, the campsite was spotless, and even my stuff was ready for the road. I congratulated both of them, wished them well, and explained I just couldn’t stop this ride to head backwards. Even though Sarah was being called home, the open road continued to call to me.

Good-byes were said, and we parted ways. It was nice having the company for a while, but I found the freedom of riding alone invigorating. I no longer needed to think about where I was going to stay or eat based off of what I thought my niece and her fiancé would like. And God, in His infamous ways, blessed us with perfect riding weather to both of our destinations.

My trip to Laytonville, California, was a short 26 miles, although my legs were killing me. But once I found out that Laytonville is considered the highest town on Highway 101, I knew why my legs where barking at me. Those deceptive inclines in the roads can be muscle bashers.

After picking up some fresh produce at a local farmer’s market, I found a nice RV park where I set-up camp. It felt good fixing my fresh veggies for just me, and reading a good book on my Kindle without feeling the need to visit with anyone. I am truly a loner-type of person, who finds happiness in my alone time. Don’t get me wrong, I do love being around family and friends, but I also enjoy the peace and tranquility that God is giving me on this trip.

The next day, I rode on to Willits, California, opting to stay at the Baechtel Creek Inn and Spa. It has a lovely swimming pool, which was tempting, but since I don’t own a swimsuit, I decided to check out the Mendocino County Museum. This place was just what I needed. I got to look at pieces and artifacts from several different centuries. It really made me ponder how different things were way back when; yet, some things haven’t changed at all.

I ate dinner at Busters Burgers and Brew. It was here that I eavesdropped on a conversation about the lawsuits the Whitman Corporation encountered with the pollution they allegedly inflicted on the locals here. I wondered if this company had really been at fault, giving some of these locals’ health issues as a result of the pollution, or if these people got those health issues for other reasons. Not knowing the details of the case, I wasn’t about to get involved in the conversation, but it did bring back memories of some of the other towns I’ve been through where big corporations acted irresponsibly.

After a good night’s sleep, I pushed on to Ukiah, California, childhood home of Aaron Rodgers, the Green Bay Packer’s quarterback. Of course, the real celebrity of Ukiah is the town itself. It was voted the best California small town to live in back in 1996. I could instantly see why.

There were these rolling fields of grapes just waiting to be harvested into succulent bottles of wine. And the older homes with their classy front porches, architectural design elements, and welcoming yards brought me back to my childhood days living in the older sections of Omaha, Nebraska. I just love the charm and individuality of older homes. I just don’t like the maintenance that goes along with them, like old wiring, leaking pipes, and deteriorating wood frames.

But if you are lucky enough to find one of those gems, whose faithful owners took care of everything, updating those hidden hazards, then consider it a gift from God. And Ukiah had several of those gems from the way they looked from the outside. Seeing these homes is the difference between night and day with the homes in Colorado Springs; so many of the homes there are cookie-cutter homes. But despite the fact that your home looks exactly like your neighbor’s on the outside, know that the insides are different to reflect our individual personalities. That’s what makes each and every one of us different; like night and day.

That night, as I lay in my hotel bed thinking about what a great week I was having, I thanked God for all the different things He’s allowed me to encounter. Life was good.

And in my real world, I’m coming off a busy time coping with my aging mother’s health. But all is not bad. Mom is doing much better, especially with the help of my brother, who tends to her needs during the day while I’m at work. He’s between jobs right now, so he has the time to help my mother with her exercises, housework, and every day activities.

Taking on this care giving role is night and day from my brother’s accounting world, yet he filled those shoes without even one hiccup. And the change in my mother is dramatic. I’ve talked before, about the needs our seniors require, and how it is our responsibility to ensure their health and safety. And as much as I know my brother would like to be working in his field again, this sister is grateful for the loving and gentle way he’s caring for our mother. He has added years to her life, and God will be gracing him for his kind and caring ways. Kudos to you, Dan, for stepping up to that plate.

All of what I’ve been going through the past couple of months has made me think about just how different we are. Just in my family alone, each sibling reacted to Mom’s health issues differently. Even though the four of us have the same parents, we are different in so many ways, just as every human being is different. I think that’s why God asked us not to judge people. Our elected officials could learn a thing or two about not judging, and not demanding their way as being the only right way.

So as I continue my virtual trip across the United States, as I continue to write my fictional novels and care for my mother, my family, and my pets, I’ll be praying that each of us appreciates both the night and the day in each of us. God bless, and let’s keep going the distance.


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