Monday, October 24, 2016

Early Voted, Sober 90 Days

  Getting down to the wire for our travels. Today is set up mail, return library books, get cash, Vote and my last Cardio PT session. My Cardio exam results show my heart is normal and all blood results good except a liver enzyme, may have to change a med. The Doc will let me know later this week.

  My weight is still 201 and I will not be under 200 when we fly South, I did try and almost made it. I have lived 90 days with NO alcohol and NO soda pop and had no withdrawal noticed. I have been living on 3 or 4 bottles of water each day since. This is quite an accomplishment for a guy who drank 3 or 4 cans of pop a day and despised water. I suspect that is the biggest cause of my loss of 44 pounds. I hope to keep it up after we leave and continue to lose more weight.

  The guys were quick to get the snow cones made. Kids love to play in them. It is 14 degrees at 10:30 AM today, burr. Our trash and recycle cans were removed at 07:00 Hrs this morning, so it is almost like we are gone already.

Friday, October 21, 2016

1st Snow

  We almost made it out of state without snow. This came early this morning and now we are in for five days of sunshine. It is kinda neat to see and since Kathy did all the driveway, I am enjoying it.

  I weighed 201 pounds this morning and have not seen that since I was in my 40's. My weight was stuck at 205 for three weeks and now seem to be moving down again. The eating and exercise have stayed about the same all the time. My last PT session is Monday and I am going to miss it. I did not expect to become attached to working out in a gym. I plan to keep up fitness on my own and still have a goal of 195 pounds.

  It is warm and cozy inside and I doubt I will go outside today. The first snow always puts dollar signs into local auto body shops owners eyes. The late news always is happy to announce how many cars went into ditches or played bumper car. No one usually gets hurt bad, but bent fenders abound.

Update: 5 PM news...86 car accidents, 6 had injures. Now temps falling to 14 degrees so ice will be a big problem tomorrow.

  This is my reading room and Mr Kitty likes my Zero Gravity chair also, it is very comfy for reading and I have plants around me with no insects to bother me. 

  We do need to make one more errand run on Monday and then wash van and park it in the garage. Then a final run over lists and hope I do not forget anything. We have a ride to the airport on Tuesday and then it will be palm trees and humidity. 

.October 21st Snow Totals Across Southcentral as of 12pm...


Hatcher Pass.........................12.0 inches
Indian Pass..........................12.0 inches
Bear Valley..........................10.0 inches
Eagle River Hillside..................7.1 inches
Near Campbell Creek Science Center....7.0 inches
South of Hatcher Pass.................6.1 inches
East Anchorage........................6.0 inches
Eagle River...........................5.0 inches
Lower Hillside........................4.5 inches
Palmer................................4.0 inches
Soldotna..............................3.1 inches
Anchorage Hillside....................3.0 inches
Anchorage NWS.........................2.6 inches
Anchorage Downtown....................2.5 inches
Kenai.................................1.0 inch

Friday, October 14, 2016

Last 50 Degree Day Enjoyed

  Been enjoying the sunny 50 degree afternoons this week. This is the last of our semi warm days and no 50's in the future forecast. I am able to do my 5 mile off road mountain walk again, without getting winded.

  My PT is almost over and I am a lot stronger and can walk faster and harder. We have 11 days left in Alaska before we fly South. With these frosty low 20's mornings, I am ready to go now. My weight is still stuck at 205 pounds. I had hopes for it to  be under 200 pounds before we left, but it is not going to happen. I will continue to work toward 195 pounds which was my goal.

  The trail to the top of this hill is what we used to do weekly to get ready for hikes about ten years ago. I hope to be able to get to the top by the end of next summer, that will be a good goal for me.

  We saw a local play last Sunday and have a traveling concert ' Women of the World' to hear tonight. This town does have a lot of entertainment for people to attend.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Flight seeing with Cliff

  Saturday was spend a day with Cliff day. He picked me up this morning and drove to the airport. Then it was preflight and go for a short fun ride to his hanger.

  He has flown this plane more this year than any year I have known him, retirement is taking effect. I was very happy it turned out to be a sunny clear chilly day.

  He lets friends store their toys on his property, some are very cool like these cars. They have Yamaha R-1 1000cc snow machine engines in them. They are like micro stock cars.

  In this candid pic, the man in shorts has a tiny real dog in his pocket, never seen that before. We had driven from his hanger to the Palmer Gun Show at the fair grounds. I had to promise I would not let him buy anything. We both left after about three hours with nothing but memories. It is a very large show, lots of machine guns and as always AR everything. I almost bought a very nice machined lower, but just can't get over my dislike for ARs. They had a LAR for $4K, seems they still cost the same as 20 years ago.

  We ate lunch and then took a long flight seeing ride back. It was good he had full fuel tanks, as I have not run the passes for over ten years now and got us lost. It was a lot of ice fields and glaciers to view though.

Knik Glacier
  The heater works good and the air was calm, great flight.

  We finally made it back to the airport and tied the plane down. Then Cliff discovered he had left the lights on and the car battery was dead. We got lucky as he had a friend nearby who drove over and got us going. He then drove me home and I thanked him for a fun filled day. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

Cabana Survived!

  Just got call from neighbor who keeps a key for us and they have let them back on the island and restored H2o and power also. She reports my new fence is still intact and no windows broken and door still closed. She walked around and says shingles still on and everything looks normal. 

  Her place has some small damage as do a few others, but the home on the end lost it's siding. There is a lot of limbs and palm trash around to be cleaned up also. We got lucky the storm hit at low tide and stayed 3 miles off shore. That eye wall that hit the outer islands was very destructive.

 That is the latest from the Cabana.

Update: We did our 5 mile mountain lake walk this afternoon. 38 degrees it was and my pulse stayed at 112. My 3 mph pace is a real workout for Kathy. 

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Skipped PT, Flew R-44 on Sunny Day

  I forgot to take a camera and it was a most beautiful helicopter I flew today. My thoughts had been helicopter flying was a past chapter for me, as it is not easy to get a school to let an old pilot without a medical fly just for fun. I had been told "NO" by company, but decided to call the chief pilot who had enjoyed watching my landings in the past. He checked with the owner and called me back with a date and time. It was almost a year since I had flown a R-44 and then they were night flights.

  I told the guy to be ready just in case my takeoff went bad. He was happy with my flying and had quite a few suggestions and tips. It was two airports, 4 landings and one autogyro to hover. A sideways hover down a runway and then a slow tail around nose hover back. That is a major mental workout for me. By the end of the flight I was whooped. He says I can fly all I want next summer with him.

  Then I got a very fun freebie, he had to relocate a Bell 206 and did I want a ride? Yes.

  Then there is more.....if I get my weight down to 195 pounds, he will take me up for a hard acro ride in his Christensen Eagle stunt plane, free of charge. How is that for more motivation to keep this weight loss going.

  I got home and Kathy wanted me to take a major walk since I missed PT, she wanted the exercise also.

 Other wise life has been watching news about hurricane and calls from family and friends wanting to know where we were. They were all happy we were in Alaska.

 Sober 72 days, weight 204 pounds.

Update on Merritt Island: H2o shut off at 3 PM, Bridges closed at 6 PM, Emergency services cease, Electricty lost at 1 AM. Winds measured at 76 mph at 11PM, then site went down. At about 4 AM eye wall hits island, winds > 115 mph

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Mandatory Evacuation for our island

The Brevard County Emergency Operations Center is activating a Level 1 Full Activation Wednesday morning.
They’re ordering the mandatory evacuation for Brevard County’s barrier islands, including low-lying flood-prone areas and those living in mobile and manufactured homes.
Those in Merritt Island, Cape Canaveral, Cocoa Beach, Satellite Beach, Indian Harbour Beach, Indialantic and Melbourne Beach should be prepared to leave at 3 p.m., when the mandatory evacuations begin.
The 45th Space Wing at Patrick Air Force Base and the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station has entered Hurricane Condition 3. No evacuations of the base have been ordered yet.
A shipment of hurricane supplies was scheduled to arrive overnight.
“All aircraft have been secured or relocated to other military installations and launch assets based at Patrick AFB and CCAFS are protected from possible storm damage,” according to a 45th Space Wing Facebook post.
There are evacuation orders for Port Canaveral as well, that will impact Jetty Park campers, marinas, and all port businesses and tenants.
The deadline to evacuate is noon Wednesday.

 At our home today it s 31.6 degrees at 9:30 AM and frost everywhere,,,,burr.

Almost used 150Gig, provider now gives 250 Gig, Dang

  I stayed up many nights watching movies, downloading anything of interest to me, trying to use my 150 gig of internet, but today the local company doubled speed and amount of data free to loyal customers. I was almost there, but now am just half way with 17 hours to use it. We will be streaming a lot of TV until we fly South and have no internet unless we go to the mall. Going cold turkey is always hard when we get there.

  Guess I will just go to bed and do some errands before my PT workout. I am scheduled to fly on Thursday and it should be a nice sunny day for it.

  Still have not found problem with old van, but decided to park it until next Summer and try again.

  The Cabana is on our minds today as the Florida Power company called us to recommend we move inland to a safer place. I checked the local news and they want people off the islands, just in case the storm is bad. Our Cabana is 9 feet above sea level and it would not take much to flood.  

Monday, October 3, 2016

Have my Stamina Back

Exit Glacier from Nat Park Road

  Each day of our three day mini vacation, we went all the way up the trail to Exit Glacier. I had not been able to do that for a few years now, so I guess I am better than before. There were not many people there as tourist season has passed, but about 20 cars of people came to see the trees and hike.

  Kathy packed food for us so I would not fall off my good eating habits while we were away from home. It worked well and she had many walks for me to keep me working out.

The view from the top viewpoint shows how little glacier is left now

  I had noticed the great weather forecast and needed a break from home life and Winter rates of $ 50 a night for a town home in Seward had just started, so we packed and left right after my PT class. It was a beautiful Fall drive and then a great hike. It was cloudy and drizzle as we checked out today, but we were only two hours from home and it was another low traffic day. 

  I am back in my man cave trying to use up 80 Gig in three days, so binge watching movies is my plan. The Kitty needed some intense loving and now acts content again. I noticed I had 48 views of my year 5 in review post, but not a single comment. I guess that post was a bust, but will serve to remind me how our year went. Now year 6 will be more low key and have some family visits added in. I do see a big storm might blow away our Cabana, hope we do not get any damage. We fly South in 23 days and I still have a lot to get in order before then. My PT will finish the day before we fly out.

 All pics taken with Cannon pocket camera.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Year 5 Retired

Our years run from 1 October each year, works for me anyway. So here is what we did last year:

   October; 15 nights on the beach in Oceanside California, Many micro brews checked out, our first and possibly last 12 man hot air balloon ride through wine country, A Taste of Gaslight District, many trips to San Diego Zoo and Wildlife center, day trips to Salton Sea and Anza  Borrego Park and much time in Coronado. Back in Alaska it was 3 flights in a R-44 helicopter for me.

  November;  We were off to Florida for the Sarasota Chalk Festival and Sand Sculptures, then my dual instruction in how to fly a P-51D WWII fighter plane ( lifetime event ). Then we checked into the resort and enjoyed 5 nights inside Disney World. Thanksgiving with  family in Tampa and science museum and aquarium was fun before we flew back to Alaska.

  December; Back in Alaska and Nephew Dave spent two weeks and Christmas with us, very nice. New Years was spent home together, as we are not very social types. 2015 had been a fun year for both of us.

  January; We flew back to the Cabana on the 17th and my friend Shaun got there on the 24th, then we replaced the old wood fence around our tiny back yard. He fixed a few more handyman things for me also, I am all thumbs with wood projects. Then Shaun and I took a road trip to see Coral Castle and the worlds largest car museum, then the next day it was diving museum and three nights in Key West to explore. He really enjoyed himself. The day we got back, I drove Kathy to the airport so she could fly to Steamboat Springs to ski and enjoy time in the hot springs and her time with Nephew Dave. Shaun and I did the NASA museums and local beaches and then he flew back to his job in Alaska.

  February; It was a quiet month with day trips to the Farmall Tractor museum, Winter Park to visit old friends and I got an hour of dual instruction in a T-6 Texan WWII trainer ( a real workout ).

  March; Our big trip to the Galapagos Islands off the coast of Ecuador. If it were possible, I would spend the rest of my life there. We went in shoulder season when it is less crowded and cheaper, but it is still not a cheap trip. Then back at the Cabana it was Easter Mass and a drive to visit family again in Tampa.

  April;  Hanging around the Island. Kathy flew to Detroit for a niece's Communion and family visit. I stayed out of trouble with Kitty at the Cabana and awaited her return. She returned on the 11th and we flew back to Alaska on the 14th. On the 19th we flew to Oahu and stayed in the Resort on Waikiki beach and had a streak of great luck in getting free room upgrade and discount trip to Kauai which we enjoyed very much. Then we took the sub down to the bottom of the sea and were amazed at all the new things added to make artificial reefs. Many more fish down there now, so I guess they are working. I enjoyed the women's thong beech volley ball competition and Kathy enjoyed the surfers and it was a big carnival event being held while we were there. Too soon the ten nights were over and we flew back to Alaska and went into live cheap mode to save our budget.

  May;  We went to the local antique tractor club plow in again this year. A very good event they put on. Then we had a mini trip to Seward and enjoyed great weather for two days. No whale viewing boat rides, as we are in money saving mode. My friend invited us to his ' Hanger is complete ' party, good food and many people I had not seen in a while. We went to the Palmer parade for our first time and were impressed at how good it was. Then we started our dollar movies and five mile walks and a picnic in the mountains each week. We kept that up all Summer. 

  June; Three airplane rides for me to refresh my skills. Mowing yard and then we flew to Steamboat Springs for two weeks with Nephew Dave, a fun airplane ride and the Forth of July event.

 July; After we got back from Colorado, it was back to mowing, walking, movies, picnics, exercise etc. 

 August;  Sunday the 7th was a life changing event for me. A heart attack that you survive is a good thing, but it puts life in a new perspective. Relearning how to eat and mucho exercise has been the agenda. I had signed up for a mountain top tour of a missile complex with my friend Pete and really wanted to make it. I was amazed my body had recovered enough to walk around at 6000 feet.

 Sept; Cardio PT 3 times a week and a two mile fast walk on other days has been my life. Pete and I went shooting, but my arms were not up to my heavy target pistol, but we had fun anyway. My arms are a lot stronger now. Kathy did her volunteer weekend with the kids at Camp Erin.
  We end the year on vacation in sunny Seward Alaska.