Thursday, July 12, 2001

July 2001

This update is following closely on the heels of the previous one
because Steve is going to be in California for his first office visit
next week. We thought we should let you know what has been happening
before he leaves.

At the end of the first update we had just arrived in Calabash. The
next big hurdle was to get all our clothes and furniture here. It was
supposed to arrive the week after we did but the truck broke down in
Indiana. So eventually it came a week later. In the meantime, we had
just the clothes we brought in the car - we traveled really light - a
blanket, two sheets and the dog's beds and towels. We bought an air
mattress, two chairs and a cooking pot the first day, then a table and
four more chairs the next day. Within 2 days our new washer and dryer
had been delivered so we could wash the dog's towels that had now
become our towels. Steve's computer arrived the next day and the phone
company got the DSL installed (after a couple of hiccups). Steve had
to use the computer packing box as a desk for one day until his new
office furniture was delivered. Then it was just a matter of waiting
for the truck. If you have ever slept on an air mattress (Jell-O bed)
you will know how much we were looking forward to seeing that

After breaking down, then the truck driver could not figure out the
directions to get here so Lisa had to drive out onto the highway and
find him. He was parked on the side of the road right next to the left
turn that we had told him to take! Finally he got here, almost knocked
down all the mail boxes on our side of the street, and unloaded. Not
too much damage to our stuff - and no damage to the stuff that Lisa
packed herself. So now we could really settle in.

The observant ones among you may have noticed a large pile of pine
straw on the roof of our rental house. This straw blocks our gutters
and as a result, during our not infrequent heavy (really heavy)
downpours the garage floods. So as soon as our furniture arrived,
Steve unpacked the ladder, put on his gloves and workboots and set out
to clear off the pine straw. First he found fire ants, nasty things to
be avoided at all costs, then he inadvertently disturbed a wasp's
nest. A wasp buzzed him and he was so shocked that I actually fell off
the ladder. (Don't worry, he was just a little bruised and
embarrassed, not seriously injured.) He went hopping inside to tell
Lisa who was trying really hard not to laugh as he recounted the
story. Unfortunately we do not have pictures and Steve refused point
blank to recreate the incident.

We have visited our lot several times and were surprised to see two
houses that are almost complete, down the cul-de-sac from us. The
ground had not even been broken when Lisa was here at the end of
February. We met the people who will be our neighbours. They seem nice
even though they all from the north east! Our lot still seems like a
good choice and we are starting to think about getting our plans drawn
up. Seeing other houses there has spurred us on.

We have also visited our local beach several times. The dogs love to
walk there and the sea is so warm that we can all jump up and down in
the waves - even Bertie. It is not a very tourist-oriented beach,
mostly rental property and homes. There aren't any restaurants or bars
and to get there you have to cross a single lane drawbridge that goes
up every hour. It is very quaint, at times inconvenient, and it keeps
the crowds away. On balance a good thing. By contrast, the beaches in
South Carolina are much more accessible and therefore more
commercial. We did go to a volleyball tournament in North Myrtle Beach
one weekend. In addition to the volleyball they had the Purina Frisbee
dogs performing. That inspired Steve to try and teach Heidi to run up
his chest and leap off him to catch a ball. Fortunately for him, she
runs around him instead of over - not so dramatic for the audience
however. But the best part about the volleyball tournament was the
free hot dogs, pizza and ice cream!

This is getting too long so we will leave the stories about the DMV,
the police at Steve's new church and the joys of rural letter carriers
for next time. Once again we have posted a few pictures on the
web. See:

Our lot

Farewell party in Sunnyvale

Goodbye dinners
- mostly interesting to Ray
and Lynn and Connie and Dave.

Thursday, July 5, 2001

The first Miner Update July 2001

The disclaimer!

We plan to write a couple of paragraphs every month or so and include a web address where you can get more information and see pictures. If you would prefer not to receive the update please reply to this message and let us know. We will try not to be mortally offended.



We finally arrived in Calabash after a seven day road trip. That's when you figure out that an Escort station wagon is a SMALL car. Especially with 2 dogs in the back. We had room for 5 t-shirts each, a phone, some sheets and underwear. This had to last us not merely for the trip, but also through the next 15 nights before the moving truck arrived.

But I'm jumping ahead. The worst traffic we encountered was on the first day getting out of the Bay area and up to Reno. In fact that was our only traffic jam for the entire trip. It was great to see Steve Johnson and Gloria Mielke - they prepared a wonderful salmon dinner and sent us on the way the next day with enough Brownies to feed an army. On day 2 we drove
through Nevada and Utah (the great Salt Lake is worth missing) and stayed in Park City. Day 3 we finished off Utah and Wyoming and spent the night in Sidney, Nebraska which has nothing but a giant Cabela's store. On the fourth day we made it to Duane's house in Auburn, Nebraska, and spent 2 nights recuperating. Duane also cooked us a great dinner - he's a whiz with cherries and cake mix. We played some pool and watched the rain, glad not to be driving in it. After one day's rest we had to set out again, driving through Kansas City and St Louis to Paducah, Kentucky, narrowly missing tornadoes and heavy storms. Our last full day's drive was a long one, through Kentucky, Tennessee, North Carolina and South Carolina to a little town called Camden where we stayed in a historic bed and breakfast. The dogs - who had been angelic to this point, sleeping in the car and being quiet in hotels - noticed the creaky floors. Finally, one week after leaving Sunnyvale we arrived at our new home in Brunswick Plantation.

Then began the long wait for furniture - but that's a story for the next issue.

We'd love to hear from everyone,

Lisa, Steve, Bertie and Heidi.