Off the Grid  Retirement at our remote log cabin in Colorado

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Moving Van Arrives

Posted by: Rick

Today, Lynne and I drove separate trucks into Laramie to meet the moving van at 9:00. Our goods were delivered to a storage facility there. We left a little early because it was raining and spitting snow. Here is what the trucks looked like once we (finally) got to town.

All our stuff arrived with only one item damaged. The above photos were taken afterwards, at WalMart where we stopped for a quick shop. We also brought a few items back to the cabin including some kitchen stuff, a bookshelf, a dresser and a cuckoo clock.

It was "relatively" dry on the way back home. We stopped for gas and I did a quick wash on the trucks.

Oh, and we picked up mail both going out (yesterday's) and coming back in (today's)!

PS: To all of you who read my post to the Sand Creek Park Facebook page yesterday about Brubaker Ln and Sand Creek Road being graded and smooth? No longer true.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Snowed Out

Posted by: Rick

When describing our off-the-grid cabin to people, one of the most common questions is about whether we risk being snowed in. The answer is yes and we will prepare for that in many ways. 

What never came up was whether, when we finally arrived after our cross-country move, we'd be "snowed out". We are.

We arrived just after noon today. It was during a thunderstorm. And, we found that our driveway is still under 2 to 3 feet of snow. This is not really surprising for mid-May, but I was seriously hoping that it would be clear.

Bella doesn't seem to mind.

But, Lynne and I had to make several trips from the top of the drive to the cabin with essential supplies.

We will need to deal with this over the next few days. Maybe we can move it with a neighbor's snow blower. Or, it might require a call to Oscar (who did the excavation for us last summer).

We are "moved in" somewhat. It seems odd that we can't drive down to the cabin, but when I powered up the satellite Internet system it came right up (allowing me to write this post). The heater is running, but should cut off soon at 60 degrees. There is a fire in the wood stove. We have running water--even hot water. The refrigerator is running. And, we've done a quick surface cleaning. Everything is in pretty good shape.

It was nice to see the new solar panels and batteries. And, to see that even through the clouds were were getting some good charge. We are fine on electricity it seems.

Lynne and I have not yet sorted out the process for both of us posting to this site. So, for a while you may see redundant posts and multiple posts on the same day. Bear with us, we'll sort it out and come up with a strategy. (Which may be for us to do redundant posts and multiple posts on the same day.)

We’ve arrived!

Posted by: Lynne

This photo was taken on the way in. You can see Rick pulling the Tab in front of me. It rained on us, and hailed a bit then stopped long enough to get some things in from the cars before it cut loose again.

Here is Rick checking the mail. Nope, no mail.

We can't get down our driveway -- too much snow!! We could not believe our eyes. So we had to park at the top of the driveway and lug stuff down through the snowdrifts that are left. In the rain, mind you. We only brought down the groceries and a few other things for now and we are hoping we figure out a solution for getting rid of the snow so we can park the Tab where she belongs.

The cabin seems in good shape except for a few things, like a broken pipe from the roof, and a stupid packrat somehow found its way into our screened-in porch and made a big smelly nest underneath the wood rack. Peeuw! We'll tackle that another day. 

Right now the heater is running and I made a fire in the wood stove. More to come later, just wanted to let everyone know that we made it, even if we are snowed-out.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Life in the Slow Lane

Posted by: Lynne

No rain! No ROADWORK (well, almost)! No bad wind!

The roadwork was minimal, just merging into one lane for a short time in here in Nebraska, but nothing to slow us down like the previous days. A good day on the road! Geez, the traffic is incredible. So many trucks, and they seemed to come in pods of ten or more. Or what do you call a bunch of trucks together??

The really nice thing is that we are experiencing life in the SLOW  lane which pretty much coincides with what we are doing with our lives. Normally we are going great guns to get to our destination at or slightly above the speed limit. That meant weaving in and out of traffic in Iowa with all those bloody trucks and all those lovely rolling hills. BUT ... when you are driving below the speed limit, everyone passes you by making for a much less stressful trip. Life in the slow lane so far is wonderful.

The drive itself is turlning out to be much better than I had anticipated. Ian Tyson took me all the way through the state of Pennsylvania, and I think he was on song #84 when I finally had to give him up. America's Test Kitchen podcasts took me through Ohio and Indiana and into our stop last night. I cannot imagine them without Christopher Kimball and his profound closing comments. What will happen to them now? I know that I am buying Wishbone Chunky Blue Cheese Dressing when we shop in Laramie before heading in to the cabin. This morning found me singing along to Alan Jackson and laughing out loud at some of the lyrics. Enya (I have no excuses) got me from the state line of Nebraska to here.

Tonight we are in North Platte, Nebraska and only 300 miles from the cabin. Considering we started out with 1800 miles in front of us, 300 feels like a sneeze as compared to the flu. 

Awaiting our Chinese take-out delivery now!

Cabin, ready or not, here we come!!!

---------

Later ... we just finished our meal and you might not want to order from the Chinese take-out place in North Platte after all ....

Friday, May 13, 2016

Rain, Rain and Roadwork GO AWAY!!

Posted by: Lynne

We are finally in for the night in Davenport, Iowa. What a day! We've made this trip 7 times and never in all those years have I seen so much traffic or so much roadwork -- in every state! Several times we were stopped dead in our tracks for 20 minutes or more due to ROADWORK, although when traffic finally started to move we did not see anyone actually working so maybe it was all just merging time? Another time there must have been a really bad accident in Indiana right before Chicago because they made everybody exit and detour to I-94. So much fun, I just can't say enough. Not.

Top that off with another end of day massive pouring rainstorm from halfway through Illinois and into Iowa. Seven miles shy of our destination we were stopped yet again for ROADWORK.

When Rick signed us in at the hotel he had to sign a paper that said we only had one pet, plus I had asked for a ground level room because Hailey doesn't do steps that great anymore and they put us on the second floor. So, I take Hailey in one direction down the elevator and Rick takes Bella the other direction. Not to mention eBay .... All the hotels here are full–probably due to the nasty weather and ROADWORK–so we are hoping they don't throw us out. 

It was also extremely windy at the end of the trip and Rick said the canoe was moving around. Yikes. Good thing it's strapped on pretty darned tight.

I find the drive not too bad but the delays for ROADWORK are killing us. 

Now all we need to top the trip off is a side wind through Nebraska!

And as a final note, and I hope I don't offend anyone, but we've given the drivers around the Chicago area our "worst drivers of the trip" award. Enough said.

Another delivery pizza tonight. Even though it was a delicious pizza (last night we had the same last night from Pizza Hut: fresh veggies, balsamic glaze on thin and crispy crust) I am so tired of eating this way! When we get to the cabin it's no carbs for two weeks for me. I am craving steak & salad!

Nighty-nite everyone.

P.S. the photo above was taken by Rick after sitting without moving for 15 minutes.

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