Saturday, June 9, 2012


Eureka!  I have arrived!

The expression "Eureka" is the state motto of California, referring to the momentous discovery of gold.   It is also an exclamation of a joyous moment!  I am very happy to be reunited with family and finished with driving after 3,486 miles!

ScrabblyPants Alert:    eureka is also a legal Scrabble word--a noun meaning "an alloy of copper and wire" and is worth 10 points.

What a welcome change the mountains were from the aridness of the desert!  I stopped in Lassen National Park and asked a visitor to take a pic of me 'n Mt Lassen.  There was snow on the ground and most roads were still closed.

On the final leg of my long journey, about an hour from Eureka,  I heard a BIG BANG located somewhere on my RV's exterior.  I was traveling in the Shasta-Trinity mountains on a remote stretch of a 2 lane road with guardrails on one side "every so often" and a mountain on the other side-- always.   This particular section had no guardrails, so the descent to the river canyon below would have been unfettered by obstacles should fate decide to claim me.  It occurred to me that the end would be mercifully quick.

Did that BIG BANG herald the beginning of the end for MovinSue?

Well, the fact that you are reading this should tell you the answer is "NO".  The BIG BANG was my tire exploding from contact with something in the road that I did not see.  It was a beautiful sunny day but that caused the heavily-forested road to be "dappled" and thus impossible to make instantaneous adjustments between light/dark areas.  So, I must have hit a rock which frequently roll down the mountain, dislodged by seismic and geologic forces and clumsy mountain goats.

Fortunately, I maintained control and saw a small shoulder ahead and pulled off theroad.

Now, you might think that this would simply take a cell phone call to summon Help.

WRONG!  Even my smartphone is not smart enough to figure out how to catch signals at 4000 feet in a forest of mountains midway between Redding and Eureka.

I  was resigned to summoning  help from a random motorist.  The first person to arrive was a female driving a trailer.  She slowed down but did not stop as she apparently did not want to pull the trailer uphill from a dead stop in the middle of the road.   I thought she appeared to be underpowered for mountain hauling--so OK-- I trotted along beside her slowed rig and asked her to stop in the Rest Area about 2 miles away and ask the employee to radio CHPS -(California Highway Patrol).

Almost 30 minutes later--here comes another car--Yay.  A lone man--Nay.  He did not stop or slow and that was actually OK with me.  And, then I saw the same vehicle headed back in my direction.  I was somewhat concerned but not alarmed as I approached the vehicle.  I had already gotten my "convincer" out of the RV, made sure it was loaded and put it in my purse.   The man asked if I needed assistance.  I said Yes.  

I had noted there was a dog paw decal on the car door saying "Rescue Me" and thought this was meant to be.   I asked him about the decal and he gave me some very reassuring answers.  He offered to transport me AND Cassie to the next town to get some help.   Since no car had passed since the trailer and him in about 30 minutes, I agreed.   I did not want to be stuck up on this mountain in the dark!   He got out and jotted down my tire specs while I got Cassie in gear and we set off for Willow Creek, about 6 miles away.

Eureka!  Andy's Auto Care was there with a heavy duty tow truck, a garage and a wonderful woman named Candy.  She took on my insurance company to get a faxed purchase order for Roadside Assistance which required talking to 3 different people--including some dude in Kazaquchstan whose English skills were almost non-existent.  My knight in shining armour departed after he was certain I would get the assistance I needed from Candy and Andy.

Here is Andy with his tools; before I took his pic, I asked him if he was a "wanted, fugitive from justice" because his pic would be on the internet.   

The Highway Patrol finally arrived and stayed with me and my vehicle while the replacement tire was taken back to the shop to be put on the rim and balanced.

So, after two hours and $83 for the only used spare tire on the mountain, I was on my way.  

I had finally gotten a Verizon signal in Willow Creek and called my sister--who was in her cups and simply remarked "OK see ya later!"

OMG I was so excited when I arrived in Eureka and spotted the rarely-seen GOOGLE CAM!  I have been looking for the GOOGLE CAM CAR for a couple years and all of a sudden--there it was right in front of me!  I frantically felt around on my cockpit desk for my camera while winding my way through Eureka traffic and finally got the proof.

 After I got parked in my sister's yard, I discovered I had also sustained some body damage on the bumper which I am going to repair myself with some fiberglass poo concoction.  The RV manufacturer gave me the paint color formula.

Sharon then warned me to always preview my exit from the RV before letting Cassie out because she has a Mama Bear and three Baby Bears in the area.  The bears are especially active on garbage pickup days.  She got a picture of the bears in her driveway to emphasize the need for caution.

I have been having a great time here in Eureka; my sister and I have already had massages at the school up the road where students try hard to please and the $25 price is right!   We have already booked weekly massages through July.  

I also met up with my friend Kate from Florida who is dating her ex-husband, Gary (who lives in Oregon). 

Kate and Gary and I had cocktails and dinner at the Moonstone Grill overlooking the rocky shoreline in Trinidad.   This is the beach level view, but the restaurant is up the hill and has an impressive view of the shoreline.  

Those two gazed with googoo eyes at each other and giggled like adolescents with silly secrets the entire time.  Actually, all of us did some serious giggling...

I had my 63rd birthday on June 3 and got an Asus Transformer 300TF tablet.  My sister bought an IPAD2.  We both have gadget fever and I am learning how to use mine and hers too.    This is my Aquarium living wallpaper and you can see I have 8 emails.  No mouse, no keys--only finger swipes and presses!   Except for the fingerprints on the screen,  I just love it!

I also got a 1992 Cadillac to drive while I was visiting for the summer.  It is kind of a disposable car; it shakes and shimmies shamelessly on the road but is drivable and even has power seats and windows that work!

Cassie is having a blast being off leash most of the time and running with the country dogs, Ozzie and Bella.  She had her first Doggie Day Care experience yesterday It's all About the Dogs!.  

The Doggie Day Care place has a PuppyCam where you can watch your dog play.  The facility is a palace for pups with individual beds in 5 X 5 motif pens with TV's for Overnighters,  an Intuitive Counselor who gives Reiki massages, cuddle service and a Kong add-on with choice of peanut butter or jerky.  

Only in California!

1 comment:

  1. OMG..after seeing the hole in your tire, I nearly feel embarrassed about my nonchalant "see ya later"