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Retirement - Travel - RV - Pets

Aviatrix36440Aviatrix36440 Posts: 5,904
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:47 AM in Good News
Howdy all!

Due to cascading issues throughout my spine, I retired 2 months shy of 30 years as a helicopter/jet pilot and federal agent. Another stinky side effect of this lovely spine was my quickly closing travel options. While the neck can handle it, the arms, thoracic and lumbar can't hack more than 30 minutes in a car if driving, 15 at times as a passenger. This of course puts flying as a passenger out, driving to places etc.

In June my SIL advised of a family reunion in Texas 2 weeks before Thanksgiving. I was almost bawling as I know my hubby (his side of the family by the way) really enjoys these gatherings - I do too. :) He then suggested renting an RV for a 3 or 4 day trip. Though I was hesitant, I was so hoping this could work. We rented the vehicle, and I am kind of glad it went this way as the vehicle (30') was designed for renters, so no slides, high entry stairs, and the seating wasn't the most comfy. I had already done some reading, so had my memory foam mattress toppers for the bed.

I also wanted to bring my Chausie (hybrid Jungle cat) to see how he would handle it. After my hubby brought the "Rent me" RV to the house, we started packing it. After about 45 minutes, I almost put a stop to our trip before it started as I was dying in pain. The hubby had me go lay down and see if it would settle down - fortunately it settled enough to continue. Put Oscar (my hybrid) in the cat carrier and loaded him into the RV. Off we went. I found that the vehicle wasn't the smoothest ride, but again it was going to be worse than one's own personal RV due to it being a rental.

I was so happy after we got to our first camp in Naples that I cried 'happy tears'...why? I realized my world had re-opened for the travel side of the house! My Oscar wasn't thrilled, but hybrids are funny in that they hate change and strange areas/sounds/smells etc. He calmed down once we got settled in the camp. We then set up for the stay, and got dinner cooked, walked around the camp, thanks to my pretty cane, and had a great time!

We broke camp and moved across the state to visit Lion Country Safari. If you haven't been there, it is neat, you get to drive through a live preserve and see all kinds of animals. It beats going to the zoo! Since we didn't have our vehicle, and I was limited, the park let us rent a car to go through for a low fee, and then they drove us back over to the KOA site we were staying at. I was so impressed with how they acted towards us, I still smile about it. This pleasant and caring treatment is almost unheard of down here in South Florida! Sorry, it is known that the rudest people live down here! It's true!! On our trip, staying at 3 camps, I found wonderful, caring people!!

More to come....

PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.


  • HI Brenda,
    I am sorry to hear that you were forced to make such a major change but..... I am so glad to hear that you are finding a "way" !! You are making your own "possibilities". I look forward to reading about the rest.

    glo :)
  • Next part...

    My hubby and I were so pleased and impressed with the folks we met, the parks, the travel method (bringing your hotel with ya), we started researching on buying an RV. Here is the creepy part. I was on my laptop, and the hubby on his, and even though we searched throughout the country we BOTH ended up liking the very SAME RV!!! Told ya it was creepy. :)

    We still had questions about the RV we liked, so we contacted the company that is in Bartow, Florida with our questions. The representative that we got was so cool. He actually went out to the vehicle so he could answer our questions directly. That impressed us. We had like 45 minutes of them! After that we were pretty sure this is what we wanted, so we asked about financing, and he hooked us up with a wonderful woman that gave us loan rates based on how much we wanted to put down, insurance estimates, extra coverage (road service, repairs, warranty info). We were sold. I put down $1,000 to hold the vehicle.

    The next morning my hubby set the passenger seat up in our SUV with my memory foam, an off we went. I managed to sleep for most of the 3 hour trip, so that worked great. The salesman there was awesome, and very personable. Unlike a lot of places we looked at, this place we were encouraged to look every part of the vehicle over, write up our gripes, and poof, they fixed everything! No "buy as is" here!

    We tested the RV overnight in their private camp area just off the lot. It was great. In the morning we headed back to the dealer for the final on the finance and insurance. We also were hooked up with the front wheel drive tow bar. After we were done, we went back to the RV resort in Ft. Myers that he stayed at with the rental. This place ...the manager was awesome. When we first stayed there, he had a family emergency, and therefore told us if he wasn't back, we stayed free. Well originally we stopped in there to say thank you, but pay him. He turns around and tells us "our prior lot" is still open, we can stay the night free due to our honesty! Again, I was blown away with the land of RV'rs.

    The next day we brought our baby home. We ended up getting a very low millage 2007 Coachmen Freelander - 31'. I call it my "Freedom-Lander!" (G)

    More to come..

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Thanks! Still writing of the adventure to this point. :) I was getting bummed when I realized that a lot of the 'little trips' my hubby and I use to do were now in danger of being pinched. This RV..hehehe... re-opened that door! We get along great, so the RV just gives us more "our" time. It's so cool!!

    My hubby mentioned RV travel years ago, and I just rolled my eyes with the "naw, not my thing thanks!" Boy was I wrong! It is a whole different world in the RV side of the house! More to come for sure. Thanks Glo!! *HUG*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Travel with pets... My hubby did a lot of research in this area, plus we talked with other RV'rs as to how they handle it.

    The first thing they put out is "driveway camp" with your cats (dogs aren't so particular of change). This way they can smell and explore. Once they are a bit comfy, then turn the generator on and talk assuringly with them. Once they are cool with that, the engine and the A/C. We are still camping as I type this in my driveway!!! My 3 cats, Oscar, Hemmingway and Stephanie are acting like this is their castle, and myself and the hubby (like in the house lol!) are their slaves. I guess cats do own us right?

    Oscar had already come with us on a 4 day trip, but now he had to adjust as the smells are more and more of us, plus this RV had one prior owner, so not a lot of odd smells for the kids. Hemmingway is the skittish one, Oscar and Stephanie seem fully comfy. Tomorrow we are going to do a short drive to get fuel and dump all the waters and the pooper. We are hoping that will be a good "toe in the water" test for them. If it goes well, we are going to take a 3 or 4 days local trip for them to fully acclimate. We are wanting to take them with us in November to Texas for the family reunion. Fingers crossed...

    More to come.... Thanks for reading. If you all could only see a use to be rare thing...my broad smile as I type this! Aaahhh some freedom restored! Who would have figured!!!! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • hi! :H we just got a new used Ford tauras station wagon and are already planning some camping trips and adventures we have been wanting to take. we have a dog, sirius, and she loves the new car so we will have no trouble getting her to go along for the ride... i am so excited for you and hope you have the best time ever... we are looking forward to our tent and camp stove and know that we will both be having a great time in our own ways!!! good luck to you! Jenny :)
  • I Love it! So glad that you found a way to travel and be comfy. Your posts made me so happy this morning :)

    Its amazing what can happen when we choose to try something new and it makes such a huge impact on your life and happiness. Very happy for you Brenda!

    BTW, you already know this, but you have got a grade A, top of the line hubby. Give him a smooch for me!

    Keep us posted on your travels. Hey, if you ever want to come up to NJ you can stop by and visit.

    Take care,

  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 9,856
    to hear you and your hubby are enjoying your RV traveling.
    Keep it going
    Ron DiLauro Spine-Health System Administrator
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • Thanks very much, and congrats on your Ford Taurus station wagon. Camping is fun - away from the rat race, on your own schedule, together time with few if any interruptions. :) We too bought a cook stove to use instead of the RV stove. We love to grill steaks and veggies, so got a Coleman. Like you, we are looking forward to lots of good times!! :) Enjoy Jenny!!! *HUGZ*

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Lisa,

    Grade A, I love that, and I agree wholeheartedly!!! I like to say he is my "Best friend, lover and confidant." In over 20 years, we've never had a 'big' fight, don't control each other, crowd each other. While we share a lot, we have enough differences to keep things interesting. We can read each other pretty darn good too! Oh, and he makes a great camp buddy!! :)

    Thanks too Lisa, we too are super happy to have found a mode of transportation that works, and too we get to explore and have fun again. I can't believe I pooh-poohed RV's so many years ago. Silly me!!! :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Thanks Ron! What's that phrase? Huudah-thunk it? (G) It is looking like our next short trip will be in about 2 weeks. Me the hubby and the 3 kid(dies). Can't wait, and yes I'll share. :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Sounds like you two are having a great time. I used to love to go to my Mother&Stepfathers trailer across the border from Montreal to near Plattsburg, NY at a lake and did the best swimming ever. We also drove to Maine and could see the mountains. You'll have a lot of great memories for sure with a RV! Make sure you have a smoke/carbon monoxide detector on board. Love to hear your stories of travel. Charry
    DDD of lumbar spine with sciatica to left hip,leg and foot. L4-L5 posterior disc bulge with prominent facets, L5-S1 prominent facets with a posterior osteocartilaginous bar. Mild bilateral foraminal narrowing c-spine c4-c7 RN
  • I do believe you are correct Charry. Tons of new memories to come for sure! :) Prior to renting an RV I'd only looked in my neighbors Class A (bus type) and another friends Class A. The second is what they call "full timer" RV'r. He lives in his Class A. It came in major handy during our 2005 hurricane season (really bad here in South Florida) as he rolled his "House" into the hanger on base which was built to handle a Cat 5 ....stayed nice and safe while the rest of us with 'normal' houses lost our roofs! Rofla!

    As a kid a friend of mine (she had rich parents) would invite me to spend a couple of weeks in the summer on their boat. In thinking about it, the living quarters were similar to that of an RV, and I very much enjoyed that - even though we stayed at the dock the whole time. Wow that was almost 40 years ago - hehe...time does fly huh?

    As to the Carbon Monoxide and smoke detectors, they are standard now. We test ours once a week and before any trips. :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Give a holler when ya git here! There are a couple of places(The Island) where ya can get close to nature. Happy Trip to ya!
    William Garza
    Spine-Health Mod

    Welcome to Spine-Health

  • I tether my Droid for Internet when on the road, so I can do that! :) I forgot the name of the 'little' town the reunion is in, but it is near San Antone. The riverwalk is a blink down the street from it if that helps?

    In preparation for our upcoming trips, we've been doing some "home makeovers" in the RV. We took the old TV out that came with this unit, replaced it with a 19" flat screen. We've rewired the audio speakers in the roof for surround sound. And 2 nights ago, got the Wii set up in here. We found the length of the area in the living space makes a great lane for Wii Bowling! (G)

    We're changing some of the lighting around (helps that we are both trained as electricians!), and going to wire in an additional inverter to carry more load, and also regulate the voltage better. As time goes on, I am sure we will find more 'improvements' to make. :) Oh, almost forgot, the hubby got a booster antenna, and mounted it for local channels. (G)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Sorry, but i did'nt see this post earlier.
    Boy it sure sounds like you and hubby are having fun, that trip to the lion safari sounds like it would be great.
    And now your doing your personal touches to it getting ready for the 1st big trip.
    You realize your doing something that a lot of people can only dream of, so have the time of your life, and enjoy the moment.

    With the internet today you might not have to do as much pre-trip planning. Just route yourself as you go along, and see as many sights of nature as possible.

    Have fun with your new toy and keep us posted.
  • From being a military brat, to being in the military and then pilot and government...I really had NO interest per say in travel after I retired. My hubby seeing I was getting down (especially after looking at my options - almost none) in that I didn't see how we could go to the family reunion a 1,000 miles away. He was the one to 're-bring' the RV suggestion up.

    You know what I discovered Jim? This travel is different. It is by OUR choice, and for fun, so I am actually *happy* to start traveling again. No permission needed, no checking in with the office, no ties...wow!!! I came from pretty much no money, so I was very careful planning for my future so as to hopefully never be there again - I think I did that, but no guarantees as we all know. This RV and the experiences so far have surprised me beyond belief. :)

    As for Internet, here's a RV funny for ya. My hubby had been using TomTom to get us to one of our camps. Well, he goofed on the address and put SW instead of NW xx Avenue. I used my Droid for the 3D location, and my laptop for a Google map to guide him (us) there! It was a comical mix for sure! We do now look for the best routes, and now it's not so much the "quickest" way to get there, but the most scenic. :) As a pilot I've flown over most the the US, southern Canada and mid and northern Mexico, now I get to really "see" what was below me!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Brenda, so glad for you and hubby and your fur-cats adventures to come in your new Freedom-Lander!

    Hearing about what this means to you and the wonderful more adventures and experiences on your happy wheels on the road is just awesome! Really cool of how this is turning out for you and the joy it is bringing you - - you so deserve!!! :)

    It's great to hear about you still planning on a some wheeling in a few weeks...come on up and visit horse country and the gateway of central Florida, live oaks, thoroughbreds, equestrian center/racetrak, gorgeous Rainbow natural springs...the weather is finally cooling down in the eve's be a great trip!

    Wow...a whole collection of wonderful heart-memories and vacationing meeting great people, at the "luxury of your own pace and own place" !!!

    and my gosh having Oscar, Hemingway and Stephanie with you so you don't get homesick...your fur-cats are mighty pleased too!

    p.s. Stay in touch with your plans of christening the Freedom-Lander and coming up to central FL :)!!

  • I know what you mean about the traveling.
    For me its been a long time since i've been anywhere and i was talking with my daughter and told her when this stuff with my back is over, if my ssd is approved, and anticapting a real nice settlement from comp. i would take her on vacation where ever she wanted to go.
    She's 17 y/o and farthest she has been is Michigan.
    So i told her to pick. Her choice was Hawaii. (me and my big mouth). Just kidding so i told her ok its a date.
    Then she told me she wanted to go to pearl harbor, sooo here's hoping early next summer and thats where will be off too. Thats a 9 hour flight from chicago that will be a blast (not).
  • Howdy Janelle!!

    Yeah some of the things that came to my brain was as you saw, my new freedom, and too the freedom to do and go where I want. :) Looks like our central FL visit might be next weekend as the hubby might be working over at the nuke plant. I should know Monday or Tuesday.

    I was a bit worried about taking Stephanie as she is 19, but in good spirits, energy, health. SHE seems to be one with the RV of all things! Originally we were going to leave her home (less stress?) but now we are rethinking that decision. Hemmingway has always been the jumpy one, but he is 2 - no heart attack in the shadows there! (G) Oscar has been on an RV trip, and did pretty well.

    Meeting new and diverse people. THAT Janelle has been the most pleasant part of this whole RV experience. I have been so happy with the folks we met so far. They couldn't be more friendly and helpful. What's funny is a lot of the camps we go to are called "55's, 60's" etc. Which normally mean my hubby and I are too young, but since I can prove I am retired, and too they see I have 3 legs now, we are allowed in. Weird huh? In these sites too a lot of the RV's in there are full timers, and like 40 years ago, they watch out for their neighbors! That is very comforting too!

    Now don't get me into talking about Truck stop locations and us sneaky RV types staying over night. As long as are slides stay in, and we don't block their activities, we are welcome. :) See, different world - I like it!!!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Jim,

    I wanted to visit Hawaii years ago, but the hubby didn't want to go. That will be one of my "I want to visit" places right next to Australia. I think it is so wonderful to see you will take your daughter there. That is so selfless and sweet. I wanna go, wanna go!!! :)

    I wonder what it would cost to go over where you can have your RV in the hold and enjoy the cruise above? Humm...interesting thoughts going on in my head now. :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Tell hubby, not to get mad at me. lol
    I thought it was cool when she said she wanted to go to pearl harbor.
    Australia would be cool as long as long as none of them kangeroos start picking a fight. lol
  • Ron, et al,

    I've found a pleasant side affect of my RV posts. I know Ron, probably not a surprise to you (G). Today for me was a good day on the pain scale, and as such, I've been popping on and off all day. I have NEVER had so many PM's since I've been on this board.

    Some folks have relayed that they realized there are other ways to have fun with our crappy spines; others have childhood camping memories restored, others are now thinking of maybe re-trying the RV side of the house, and yet others sharing their camping stories. I am so glad I am on a good day, as the smiles I gained today are priceless!

    We already know that the folks on here share a spiney bond, but a freedom and explore bond is apparently there too!!! I am so inwardly happy that my "Freedom-Lander" is giving some hope of future travels and fun - I know it is for us. The hubby has always been great, supportive, sympathetic, understanding...well you get the jest. This makes us almost feel like when we first met, and did things 'as friends'...! Aaahhh sigh...happy camper today am I!!! Thanks for all the GREAT PM's guys!!! Okay, here we go, group *HUUUGGGZZZ* :)

    I will be meeting up with a fellow spiney on my next trip. After that, I will post. Now the rest of you, don't make me have to chase you down with my "Freedom" RV!!! :)


    Oh, by the way, we are STILL camping in the driveway - kitties are fully adapted - this is THEIR home now, and us, like the house - their slaves! :)
    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hi Brenda

    I've so enjoyed reading about your RV adventures and plans so far. I can "see" the BIG smile on your face all the way down here in Australia.

    Terrific that you've got the kitties used to their new home and your hubby sounds like he's a real darling.

    Keep enjoying yourself and looking forward to more updates.


    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
  • Hehehe... Yeppers..still smiling! My cats now have established "their" favorite spots to be when resting. Like in the house, they are the "pecking" order locations or something. Remember Trish, we humans are put here to serve our kitties! (G)

    Here's more..

    Hubby was a busy bee today! I didn't realize that we had these things called "Wash Outs" on either side of our house. I learned these things are good for two things, having the rotor router thing if your toilets are clogged, *and* it has a coupling that let us hook that "black water" (the pooh water) hose up to dump right into our septic tank! How cool is that? Otherwise we would have to find a site we could "dump" at. :) The hubby then went "shopping" and came back with a 'sanitation wand' and totally cleaned out the black water tank! Wow, he had a 'crappy' job today for sure! (EG)

    The hubby was still doing the busy bee... he added another spigot and fitting to our agricultural well, and now we have fresh water - we already had a 30amp circuit from the house. Wow, now we are set as if at an RV camp!! Inside I added nice white "stick on" spice rack holders, a few hooks added here and there, oh and a nice wood key holder!

    We are planning a 3 day trip for the end of next week, so now we are pretty well stocked up except for what clothes we will wear! It's coming along pretty nice and comfy. :) More to come...

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hey, Brenda--enjoying your RV posts. My questions are, is the bed comfortable, and is there enough water in the RV for long hot showers?? That's what hold me back from RVing cos I am a fearful flyer (despite both of us being retired from that federal agency that travels back and forth to low, earth orbit (hee hee.)--Mazy
  • Howdy Mazy,

    Glad you're enjoying my RV adventures! :) A typical RV mattress is only about 6 or 7 inches thick, and it is a standard 'coil' type mattress - not even great for the 'el normal back' person! What I did was replace the queen bed mattress with a memory foam mattress. I am now quite comfy in it. :)

    The prior owner had a very nice 'living' package put in, so the sofa, sate area and lounge chair are well cushioned and comfortable. Most RV's, they aren't as comfortable - as my hubby and I discovered when we looked at various classes and sizes.

    As for showers and such. "Long" hot showers are not done in most RV's as your fresh water could do it, but the 'gray' water (the spent water from the sink,shower etc.) has a limiter on it. When that tank is full, you try and add more, it just won't drain - even when hooked up at your site. I find the hot water heater does great, and my showers have worked out fine for me. Now keep this in mind, and even come "Class A's" (Grayhound bus like) have shower areas that are much smaller than most are use to. I am 5'3" and I fit in there fine. My hubby is 6'2", and has to sit down to use it!

    Now if you are one that prefers RV Camps/resorts/KOA verses Boone-docking/Dry camping, most have very good facilities to which you can shower in relative normal. :) The best thing I can suggest is give it a try via rental first (that is what we did), and go to some established locations so you can ease into it. If you are okay with the shower, and limits on water use, try a park say....at a National Park. On many of those, you will only have a electrical hook up, and maybe water - but would have to use their dump station to clean out the gray and black (the poop-per)water. If there is only 2 of you, you wouldn't have to worry about the bathroom water for several days!

    Since we are planning 14 or so days for our trip to Texas, we've driveway camped for a week in our new (used) RV. This to see if my back could handle the length of time (moving around in here, sleeping, shower etc), and more importantly as I won't kennel them, get my kitty cats adjusted as well. They have done outstanding! Like in my home, my back has its issues regardless, so the plus of our literal "Stay-cation" is I and my cats are definitely compatible with RV living and driving. :)

    Another good we found about a rental? They are not set with all the bells and whistles, so if you find the experience otherwise fun, and you decide you might want to buy one, it can only go up from there! Oh, and if you rent one, you might want to buy a 4" memory foam mattress topper to put on the mattress - can really make the difference in whether your RV sleeping is a go-go for you guys! I hope this helps.

    Oh, and in closing, we have modified our entertainment area (TV, DVD, Wii, Sound system), made the kitchen more stable for driving and using (key holder, fixed spice rack, hooks for mitts and things, mini dish rack), as well we cook most of our own food on trips, so dishes, cups, mugs, silver ware, pots and pans etc. Plenty of storage room! Things of course we couldn't do with a rental.

    Oh...the bathroom. If you have back issues, the john could be a problem. In our rental the potty was on a 'step' if you will, and for me, it was rather painful to mount and dismount the potty. For me, that was a deal breaker for *any* RV we were to buy. This one is perfect in so far as height and size...just something else to consider. :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hi Brenda

    Your hubby is definitely a darling doing all those "crappy" jobs !!

    Are you finding that having a new challenge helps you handle your pain a bit better?

    Hope you have a nice trip at the end of the week and that the weather is nice, like it is here in Perth.


    XLIF L2-4 20.8.15
    ALIF L4/5 2009
    Laminectomy/discectomy L4/5 2008
  • Tiny change/correction? My hubby (the researcher mind you) told me that some sites now let you sit status "open dump", and as such, like your house, your hot water will be limited by the tank! Now in some RV's it is an "instant" on demand heating system for water. So your "loooongggg hot showers", are something that can happen!

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Yes and no I guess is the best answer. Most times my brain is diverted to other things to do, so I do get a bit of a break? :) The "no" part (G) I twist, or bend, or lean too much doing something, and I pay for it later. But in the grand scheme of things it's worth it. :)

    Good and bad news... Hubby who is an electrician, who (which is common) was laid off 4 weeks ago, now has a "shut down" job at the local nuke plant! He is on what is called 6 - 10's, so looks like our trip just got moved into November. Sniff. The interesting thing though? I can sneak a night or two in the driveway, and pretend I am at some camp somewhere! See one of the things you do at a lot of these camps is close all of your window screens! Yeah, it's a bit weird. With that, one inside wouldn't know where they were!! So I pretend, and it is like tiny vacations. Odd huh? Texas is still on!!

    I should know tomorrow of my hubbies schedule, so it might be the trip we were going to have to Ocala National Forest at the end of next week gets merged into our Texas trip...more to come.

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
  • Hehehe...him get angry? Naw, he's a 'type B' personality. Takes a lot to get that fuse lit, never mind blown! (G)

    According to my mother, my grandfather was lost in Pearl Harbor. Now thinking about it (as she lied when she told me my brother was KIA in Nam) - he was missing and then found according the the books they have at the wall in D.C.! I guess I'm gonna look for a link with the names? Anyone seen a site with all the victims of Pearl Harbor?

    I found the list, he's on it. Never met him, but this time she didn't lie! I still want to visit!! Oh USS Downes - ironic huh?

    My hubby is funny as he is kicking all around the Internet for 'camping ideas'. It's kind of fun to watch his reactions to some of the places he found! He is in construction (Electrician) and with jobs starting and stopping his employment gets weird. So we use his down time for trips. :)

    PCTF C4 - T2, Laminectomies C5, C6 & C7. Severe Palsy left arm/hand.
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