Organ Pipe National Park

Organ Pipe National Park

About Me

I purchased "Sadie''s House On Wheels "in late 2007 and loved traveling in a motor home so much that I went on the road full time in late 2008. I started writing this blog to help me remember all the wonder places I have been and it allows me to share those places with my family and friends. Summer of 2013 I decided to hang up the keys for a while and moved back into my stick house. After nearly two years, I am on the road again.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Calpine, Ca

Ok, I left the balmy almost too hot climate of Southern California to travel to Calpine where mother nature is in the mist of trying to make up her mind whether it's Fall or Winter. There have been snow flurries, high winds, and clear cold skies. Temperatures have been in the teens at night and low 60s during the day and my forced air heater has quit. Burrr. My little catalytic heater works OK but the forced air heater heats much faster in the cold mornings.

Where in the heck is Calpine you say? It's a very small community about 30 miles north of Truckee and about 40 miles south of Quincy, California on highway 89 and about a 90 minutes drive to Reno. It was originally an old logging town and now it is sort of a suburb of Sierraville which is about 5 miles down the road. It's located in the middle of the Tahoe Forest. My youngest son, Jeremy, who is a Forest Service employee lives here and has invited me to park in his driveway as long as I need to, which may be for 4-6 weeks. It's a very family oriented small community of maybe 200 residence.

My orthopedic doc has told me I need a "tune up" on my artificial hip. He needs to replace a part which was suppose to last 10 years or so and has only lasted 8 years. It's wearing out prematurely due to my active abuse...hiking, backpacking, cycling etc, which is why I had the hip replaced in the first place. So, I'll have the surgery at the hospital in Truckee and recover in beautiful Calpine at Jeremy's house.

I'm off to Reno to get the heater fixed and see about having an "extended stay" fitting installed on the propane tank to use during my extended stay in Calpine since the nearest propane station is about 30 miles away.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Chief advocate

I'm still in S. California being John's chief patient advocate/surrogate "wife". The surgery went very well on Monday, and the doctor doesn't anticipate any unusual problems. This was a major surgery and there is a long road to recovery. The doctor's were able to make a neo bladder out of part of his small intestines. The biggest challenge will be learning how to use his new bladder and this will take time. The best news is that the pathology reports showed no cancer in the lymph nodes.

The majority of the nurses and doctors at USC Norris have been great. If you have to deal with cancer, this is the place to be. This is a teaching hospital so there have been a few minor bumps due to learning processes. However, John is very good at pointing out their mistakes so they can correct them. LOL

John is up walking and his system is starting to wake up and he is taking clear liquids including juice and broth. The doctor told John that he would be in the hospital 8-10 days so its anticipated that he might go home on Tuesday or Wednesday. His birthday is on Friday so maybe he will get some Birthday Cake (most likely pudding).

I've been staying at the Burbank Elks club in my motor home which is about 20-30 minutes or so from the hospital which has made for a tolerable commute. The Elks club has power so I have been able to use the air conditioner when needed and it has been warmer than usual. Sadie is doing well and has adjusted well to walks in the asphalt jungle. In all fairness, Burbank is a pretty nice place to be if you have to be in the LA area. I guess I'm a country gal at heart.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Home town fun

I'm still in PG and winding up my stay. Mom has been doing very well with her cataract surgeries. She is seeing out of one eye well enough that she really doesn't need glasses for distance. She had surgery on the second eye yesterday and she is already seeing out of it much better. The lens implants are miracles for seniors. I asked the doctor what happens if someone like me who has had lasik surgery later on needs cataracts removed. He basically told me that changes to the eyes normally don 't take place until our 40's and I didn't need to really worry about that just yet. I just let him talk, but should have given him a big hug. LOL.

The weather has turned nice...typical of October. I attended the Butterfly Parade which has been going on for years (more than 60) to welcome the monarch butterfly home to Pacific Grove. It takes place every year the 1st Saturday in October. All of the school children march downtown in their butterfly costumes. They get pretty creative and some even reuse their costumes of Halloween.( I had a little difficulty with my camera so missed a lot of the good shots. )The finale is the high school band marching at the end of the parade. I marched in the parade all through elementary, junior high, and high school, so it was fun watching them. My children also marched in the parade when we lived here. The parade route ends up at the oldest elementary school, Robert Down, and culminates with the Butterfly Bazaar which includes food and games and family fun. All the proceeds go to the schools and everything is donated by local businesses. It was eerie seeing my children's friends who are now parents and have kids who are now marching in the parade.

The famous Pacific Grove Marching Band

One of the high school floats

Even the police get into the spirit!

Tomorrow I head back to Frazier Park and will shuttle John to USC Norris Hospital on Sunday where he will under go radical surgery for his cancer. I'll be staying in my motor home at a nearby Elks club for a few days so I can be close to the hospital and keep John in line.... so he doesn't harass the nurses too badly. LOL. Actually, my other job will be to keep everyone informed of his progress and ....... be at is beck and call....just this once LOL.