When I get to a place
for the first time and know it like home, this is when I know my journey
will be over
There are always two
people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer.
I was born lost, and take no
pleasure in being found
Pat's Winter 2008 Blog
If this is your first time here, you might want to start from the beginning of our fulltime RV Journey with our 2007 Blog's
Camper Check List - A list of things we do before leaving camp. Again, this isn't gospel, but its a good start for those who might not already have a list made up.
Sunday November 30th 2008
We're going on 5 full months of sitting still but I think we're starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. We finally have a goal to look forward to, and knowing the Holidays will be over soon, we can pack up and get back to traveling.
The condo has come to a halt while waiting on inspections and waiting to get a few more quotes on specific things like drywall, plumbing and the installation of the kitchen cabinets.
The electrical is all updated and run, the sub-floors are all replaced and leveled and a few of the beams that had rotted out from the water damage were replaced and shored up. Cindy has been working her little tail off keeping it moving at a fast pace.
One thing that I thought was funny was Cindy kept telling me she wanted to do this all on her own to prove to herself that she could be the General Contractor and not need ANY of my help. So much of me wants to be there helping every day, but she is doing a stand up job of getting her work done and I show up anytime she needs help lifting stuff or hauling garbage out to the dumpsters.
We also have some big news that I'll finally start talking about, only because I cant hold it in any longer. When we had visited Chris and Jeanne back in June while in Yellowstone, they had mentioned that they were always looking for good workers in the General Stores where they worked.
We talked with them and actually asked for applications with these thoughts in our heads - We're both photographers, we love the outdoors, the wildlife and the stunning beauty of the West. So to be able to live in the thick of it for 6 months would be a dream come true. We wouldn't work fulltime, only around 30 something hours per week, we'd both have our days off together and would be able to have our days off filled with hiking and photographing the wildlife that allows us to share in their world with them.
We filled out our applications and sent them in over the summer, and our references have all been contacted. We're the only ones who haven't been notified if we got the job or not.
If we get the job, here is our plans. As soon as we can get the condo squared away, we'll hit the road heading to someplace warmer than Michigan. We'll fool around in the Southern section of the United States till we have to report to Yellowstone in late spring. We'll plan on working through the summer in Yellowstone, basically just trying to burn out the shutters on our cameras and once the season is up, we'll head back down to Baja to relax and save some money.
If we don't get the job in Yellowstone, then we still plan on leaving as soon as we get the condo squared away, but while we're roaming around on our adventure, we'll be applying for some different work camping opportunities around the country.
Cindy had applied for us to work in Glacier National Park last spring, but we didn't get a reply back from them till mid-summer when we were already home, and by that point we had to say "Thanks but no thanks." Glacier would be a spot we'd love to work at, even though we haven't even seen it yet, from the photos I've seen, I think I'd like it immensely.
What we've come to the realization about is to travel non-stop without sitting still, we just roll through the money way too fast. If we were to stop and work-camp, we'd be able to prolong the adventure while really exhausting the areas we're camping in.
I've also kept myself busy with even more galleries being updated and created. While working on some past galleries, I noticed that we had a bunch of cool shots from the Desert Southwest, but they were just random shots from the journey, so I put them in their own gallery - The Desert Southwest Gallery. This is probably one of my favorite galleries I've worked on simply because of the memories they provoke.
Camping out in the desert, nothing but the sound of the wind blowing sand across the scrub brush and a distant sound of a coyote howling at the moon are memories that will always stay with me.
After months of working and sorting, I've finally got all the Baja stuff put together. There were so many pictures, that this resulted in multiple galleries ranging from a Baja California Gallery Part 1 to a Baja California Gallery Part 2.
Those two galleries are filled with images of our two months spent below the border. To make sure the galleries werent even bigger than they already are, I split things like the various Missions we visited into their own separate galleries.
Once I started going through the Missions, I realized we had enough pictures that we could probably put together a book of just the Missions of Baja...LOL
Misión San Francisco Javier - Baja California Sur, Mexico Gallery is a huge gallery but includes the long drive down the back roads through the mountains that led to this magnificent place of worship.
Misión Nuestra Señora de Loreto – Baja California Sur, Mexico Gallery is one of the oldest Missions in the Baja and is located in Loreto which was the capitol of the Californias
Misión San Ignacio - Baja California Sur, Mexico Gallery is a small one, but one thing I tried to do with each mission, was do research on the missions and their history, so the intro of the galleries will give you a bit of background as best I could find on the internet.
We also had enough pictures from the week we camped on the playa at Los Cerritos, that I was able to put an entire gallery together just from that. The Playa Los Cerritos Gallery is also where we sat watching the Surfers play for hours on end. If we were ever offered a Job at Surfer Magazine, I'd do back flips for the opportunity!
I had almost forgotten about the day we spent with Noel & Jackie boating around Isla Espiritu Santo and swimming with the sea lions! This gallery brought back tons of cool memories and almost brought a tear to my eye when seeing the huge pods of dolphins swimming around our small boat. What an amazing sight and one that is almost impossible to put into words.
I tried to split the days we spent in Los Barriles up into separate galleries. This was where we had the opportunity of seeing the Flying Mobulas. It is also where we had the opportunity of going out on a day trip with Congo's Sportfishing Charters where Cindy got her shot of the Humpback Whale breeching out of the water. This was the shot that was chosen for the Baja Calendar which she is so proud of.
Once I finally finished up with all the Baja stuff, I then created a gallery for the Bishop Mule Days Celebration that we attended in Bishop California. This two day event was fun filled and boasts the largest collection of Mules in the Country. Basically a huge party of Asses that we seemed to fit in perfect at.
That should catch us up to date and let everyone know what Cindy and I have been up to. We still love hearing from everyone and thanks for the continued support and comments while we're only sitting still at this point in the adventure.
Thursday December 11th 2008
We got the call a few days ago and everything is now confirmed, we have a job in Yellowstone National Park next summer....Yippeee!!
Cindy and I are both really excited about this and are soo looking forward to spending the summer in Wyoming. I'm already dreaming about the photos we'll be getting with having that opportunity.
I've started getting things lined up for our shove-off date of mid-January and making some lists of items that we'll need, things we need to get rid of and a few things that I need to build in the camper while I still have use of a full workshop.
Of course, like I always do, I fiddled around all summer long while it was nice and warm outside not working in the camper, and now that its a balmy 18° outside, I start thinking of things I need to work on.
I went out to take some measurements inside the Coach the other day and noticed the temperature gauge on the wall said it was only 23° in there. WTF are we doing here!?!
Cindy's sister called today from Louisiana saying they've gotten over 5" of snow last night and it's still coming down! She was all worried because their green house had collapsed from the weight of the snow and was asking me if I could offer any suggestions. I'm thinking she thought because we're the experts on living in a snowy climate that I'd have some answers.
I told her to fire up a heater in there and melt the snow off the roof to take the weight off...LOL
Cindy's ahead of schedule with the condo, and I'm really proud of how hard she's working on this. She finally found some workers that were worth their weight and got 90% of the work busted out.
Insulation goes in tomorrow, plumbing got finished a few days ago and passed it's inspection this morning and drywall goes up the first of next week. Then we'll spend a few days slapping some paint up before the carpet goes down, and it should go on the market by Christmas!
If anyone has been paying attention, the Galleries look completely different. I've figured out a way to make sub-galleries so now there are multiple categories to choose from.
I also combined the galleries from my Bonish Photo website to coincide with the Every Miles A Memory galleries so I don't have to keep paying for two separate gallery hosts. This also helps so I don't have to make multiple galleries to go on both sites and now it's just sort of a one stop shop.
One word of warning, I used to do a bit of modeling photography so those are now on the same site as our travel stuff, but they're all listed under proper headers, so if you don't want to see scantily clad women, or men, just don't click on the Modeling Gallery.
Cindy also got a new piece of camera equipment as a surprise for Yellowstone, but we haven't got it in the mail yet, so I don't want to talk about it till I can post a photo of how sexy it is! I'll give you a hint, it's really big and heavy, and she'll need a new tripod to hold it steady!
Tuesday December 30th Probably the Last Post of 2008
Christmas has come and gone and the New Year is upon us. I truly hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas Holiday, Hanukah, or Kwanza - depending on what nationality or beliefs you hold.
The past few days have been as hectic as holidays always are. Between having our daughter fly in for the holiday, traveling for a few days straight to visit family that she hasn't seen in years and getting pounded with a massive snow storm that kept me out plowing with a friend all night long, the last week has just sort of been a haze.
A good buddy of mine who I had been doing work for over the summer now clears snow in big plazas with some heavy equipment. We're talking piles of snow that are the size of a house. We get there in the evening and push till the sun comes up. 24 hours without sleep and pushing non-stop can get monotonous, but thank heavens for 5 Hour Energy bottles.
Craziest part of the whole storm was a few days after the snow hit, we reached record highs and almost everything melted as soon as it came in. Typical Michigan weather and one of the reasons I hate the winters here. If we're going to have snow and cold, I want it on the ground for the entire season.
We've been at the condo painting for a few days straight now, so I just wanted to take a break to update the site while I had some free time. I also posted a new Review of a product we got for Christmas. Solar Powered Flashlights!
Happy New Year Everyone! 2009 is gonna be a great year...heck, anything will be better than the economy of 2008.