Sunday, March 3, 2013

Leaving San Antonio

Tuesday, February 19. 2013

I decided today to go downtown San Antonio to the Riverwalk and have lunch.  I parked in a parking garage because there was no on street parking.  I still find it hard to accept that it costs upwards of $20.00 to park a car for a day in big cities.  Anyway….I started my trek thinking I was going to enjoy it.  I must admit the Riverwalk is beautiful and unique and I did see areas I had not seen before due to the inability to push Pati’s wheelchair places.  But it was just not enjoyable by myself, as I am finding most things I do every day now are not enjoyable.  I am trying hard to get over this attitude or feeling and move forward but it is a slow, if never ending, process.

I talked myself out of sitting at one of the many nice outdoor restaurants where I planned to people watch so I just took a very long walk and got in some good exercise with a different type of scenery than walking around the RV Park with Dexter. I didn’t realize how many up and down stairs there were going over the river and up and down to the street exits so I took all of them and I must say it was enjoyable.  As I was going back to my car at the parking garage I saw a WhatABurger so decided to have one of their big Patty Melts.  It was good but I can’t do that too often.  I can’t believe I actually ate a big greasy unhealthy burger when I was considering eating at a nice healthy meal at Landry’s like shrimp and oysters.  I want to lose 30 pounds this year and I sure won’t be doing it if I keep that up.  Maybe with all my walking it was a wash.

I visited the Pearl Brewery area just north of downtown San Antonio while out also.  That area has been transformed into a very unique and beautiful area of shops and condos right along the river.  It was interesting and reminded me of the Pearl District in Portland, Oregon.  Developers transformed a former warehouse area in downtown Portland into a major living area and it is spendy and classy.  When I give up my road roaming lifestyle I may have to consider renting an apartment in that area of Portland just to live my final days in a much different way surrounded by the big city.  I wouldn’t even need a car.  I could order my food delivered from the store and walk anywhere I wanted to go and if the kid’s want to see me, they can come see me or pick me up and take me home for a home cooked meal….that would be neat.  Something to consider when I get too old to drive anymore, hopefully ten or more years from now.

Rain is on the way tonight and tomorrow so I plan to hang close and not get run over by someone out on the roads.  I have decided to stay here at Fort Sam until the first part of March since I have made some dinner obligations with friends and it is a long drive back into town from where I am going to relocate at Canyon Lake.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

The rain didn’t amount to anything but it did get windy and cooler the past few days.  Today I decided I had best make some reservations at the military recreational RV Park at Canyon Lake.  I was told it was booked solid because of Spring Break so now I have to make different plans.  I have to leave here on the 7th of March.  I will have to do a little research and calling but fear I may run into a problem due to the Spring Break issue in most places.  I think I will try to head NW into the Hill Country towards a little town outside of Kerrville called Ingram.  Pati and I used to love driving up to that area and making a big loop back to our home through the country.  Ingram is an artist colony type place, small with not much there but it is quiet and peaceful and the river runs through it.   Kerrville is about ten miles away so close enough for shopping and other needs.  

I got lucky and confirmed a two week reservation at a real nice park in Ingram called Johnson Creek RV Resort.  It looks nice on the web site and the reviews are excellent from folks who have stayed so I think this will be just fine for me.  I told them I may stay a third week so left that option open.  From that location I can just relax, get in some country walking, fish in the stocked creek (catch and release but good practice), go to Fredericksburg and some other small towns in that area and have some good country cooking.  I am looking forward to it now.

Speaking of fishing, I read an on line article the other day about how to set up a fishing pole for fly and bubble fishing.  My good friend, Jeff, will find this of interest. This is interesting to me as well because I want to learn to fly fish but I need to buy all the equipment that goes with it and learn casting etc.  Since I already have two spinning rods and reels with me and my basic fishing tackle box from long ago, I can simply buy a water-weighted plastic bubble and some different wet and dry flies and practice using my existing equipment.  I am going to re-string my reels as they have not been used in many years and I don’t trust the line to be good.

Anyway, I am going to try this when I move up to Ingram next month.  The article explains how to cast and present flies with this technique and gives tips on setting the hook and holding the pole to prevent the fish from leaping out of the water and throwing the hook.  I hope to report next month that I actually caught a fish with this method.  If it works here, I can go fishing while on my property sitter job in April and May at Lake Tawakoni.  I need to get over to the Bass Pro Shop here and get supplies necessary to do this.  I may just buy a cheap fly rod and reel too to practice with.

I have decided also to fly back up to Portland, Oregon to visit with my sons and granddaughter and new grandson, the one I have yet to meet.  I checked my Alaska Air Lines mileage plan and I have 47,800 miles.  I checked online to cash them in on a round trip ticket to Portland and it will cost me 47,500 miles to go.  Lucked out on that one.  As soon as I hear back from my sister in Dallas that she will take in Dexter while I am gone, and my son Josh that Ben will be home and available for a visit, I will get those tickets booked.  I need to jump on this quickly to get the flights I want.

This next week I have made plans to have lunch at our old Glenwood neighbors, John and Dixie’s house, and to have dinner with a friend I made while working Real Estate, Lisa and Harry, and then to spend the weekend with some other friends we met when we first moved here, Rick and Sandy.  I am looking forward to seeing all of them before I leave this area this year.  I am very fortunate to have made some good friends throughout the country and it is always pleasant to visit with them.  On my way up to Montana the end of May I am stopping in for a brief visit with Larry and Nancy Cedar.  They are one of the couples I met while at Rockport and live in Kansas.  I will be driving right by their place.  I am also going to visit some dear friends we have known since we were neighbors in California back in the early seventies, John and Linda Hayden.  They live near Missoula, Montana, just south of where I will be working this summer.

Sunday, March 03, 2013

I have been pretty busy lately.  I had dinner with my friends, Harry and Lisa.  Harry is a recently retired Coast Guard Warrant Officer and I sold them a house when I was working in Real Estate down here in San Antonio.  It was nice visiting with them and they told me they are moving on to Florida in the next few years.

I also had lunch with my old neighbors, John and Dixie.  It was strange driving through our old neighborhood and seeing our dream home we had to sell looking just like it did when we left. I did enjoy my visit with my friends.

I also spent the night with our good friends, Rick and Sandy.  We drank a lot of beer because Rick has a tap set up on his patio full of Shiner Bock.  It was a real nice visit and they are such great hosts and made me feel right at home.  I really enjoyed taking a shower in their large home shower after taking showers in my travel trailer the past seven months.  Rick gave me a lot of great fishing equipment and a fly rod and reel too so I have a head start on my fishing gear.  He said he is done with fishing and had no need for it.  They are also talking about moving soon.  They are looking at California or Arizona.  It is difficult to adjust to other places after living in the West so I understand their thinking.  We will keep in touch wherever they go.  They sure loved Pati and couldn’t tell me enough how much and how sorry they were for my loss. 

This morning I went to church at a small Lutheran Church and sure felt good about doing that.  I have been trying to go to church every Sunday but it is difficult when traveling.  I must say I am really enjoying the Lutheran Church since I have been going to it for awhile.  I may just continue with them if I keep feeling as good as I do about attending their services.  It actually feels good to get back into going to church services after not doing so for many years.

After church today I tackled giving Dexter a haircut.  He was really looking shaggy so I clipped him pretty short and he looks great and feels great.  Now I need to bathe him and clip his nails.  He does not like me clipping his nails but we get through it.  He is such a great little dog.  I hate the thought of losing him in the next 3-4 years, if we are lucky to go that long.  He turns eleven in April.  I do know I will find another doggie friend to live with me when I have to face that day.  I have no intentions of trying to find someone to replace Pati but I will replace Dexter so I can continue to have that king of unconditional doggie love and joy to keep me from going insane alone.

I purchased my tickets to Portland so I will be going back there April 3 – 8 to see the boys and grandkids and Pati’s brother and sister.  I really hate flying but I need to see everyone, especially Ben, since I won’t get back until October.  Speaking of October, I have decided to stay in Oregon next winter instead of coming down here to Texas.  I am going to hang out in McMinnville as long as possible so I can take some winter trips to Bend and check out the real estate market.  I am strongly considering going back to my original plan of looking for a manufactured home in a senior park in Bend as my home-base.  If I do this and get too bored or cold in the Winter, I can always hook up the trailer and head south for a few months.  I really miss the Pacific Northwest, especially Bend.  That is one great town and I am going to do all I can to live there. It is also close to family and I can fish until I am blue in the face, from fishing or the cold, whichever comes first!

For now I am looking forward to leaving San Antonio Thursday and getting on with my plans.  I will be back in a few weeks or more to catch up with more pictures and less words.