Sunday, May 1, 2022

May

Sunday: (05/01) Leftover salad for breakfast. We finished up preparing for Lou and Dawn to leave in the jeep with the trailer and head home. They need the things they will need in the next couple of days to be with them. I prepared to roll. I took care of dumping the tanks after our week here. They were pretty full. I added enough water to the fresh tank for my stay at the pinnacles but didn’t make it full because there was a line behind me and I didn’t need it full. I stopped in SLO for gas at Costco then at the Taco Temple for a big burrito for dinner tonight and tomorrow. Did I mention big. Then another stop in Atascadero at a Smart and Final Market for a couple of things. And I stopped for lunch in Paso Robles at the Golden Dragon Chinese Buffet. Then I was finally back on the road at about 1300. I took Highway 152 from San Lucas over to Highway 25 then up to the Pinnacles. I settled into my campsite at about 1600. Time to relax. I did walk the campground about 1800 then had my dinner, ⅓ of my burrito.

Monday: (05/02) I got up early and took a shower. I made a ham egg and cheese breakfast sandwich. All my hikers were early so we were off a little after 0900 to drive up to the trailhead. We hiked my Pinnacles Grand Loop hike, 10.5 miles going through all the caves and tunnels and through the High peaks rocks. No condors were seen today. The views were nice and the weather excellent though a bit warm. After the hike I hosted a lemonade party at the RV since I only had 5 fellow hikers. After they left I had another shower and relaxed in the RV the rest of the afternoon and evening. Dinner was more of my burrito. I prepared the RV to roll in the evening since I plan to roll out of the campground at about 0500 to beat the morning commute traffic going home. So slides were brought in.

Tuesday: (05/03) I awoke at 0430, ate a banana and did the final ready to roll items and left camp. Only one other vehicle on the road until I got near Holister, then I was in a traffic jam from Holister to San Jose. I thought going through there at 0530 would have been better. I got home around 0700. I warmed up my final ⅓ of the burrito I've been dining on the last three days. Nice breakfast. Lou and I moved the recliners out of the trailer and I returned the trailer to Uhaul. But, now the sewer replacement project had moved in just in front of our house so both the Jeep and RV were left out on the highway. We were busy watching the construction the rest of the day. I had a salad for lunch. About 1600 some of the equipment cleared out from in front of our driveway so I asked if I could bring in the RV. I fetched the RV but by the time I got back even more equipment was in the way. They were enlarging the pit in front of our house in preparation for tomorrow's pull. I parked and waited while they dug two pits out but I was parked on where their third pit was to be so they plated up the big hole and I parked the RV back in the driveway. Next project was to repair the washer. The water level switch was broken. I located a replacement and ordered it. $60 dollars and a week and we’ll be back in business. I picked up dinner from Chili's Restaurant, BBQ ribs.

Wednesday: (05/04) Granola and banana for breakfast. Busy catching up on my sewer project and apartment building inspections. They made some progress on the projects while I was gone last week. Salad for lunch. Artichokes from our plants and baked potatoes with steak for dinner.

Thursday: (05/05) I made a ham, egg and cheese sandwich for breakfast. Another busy day watching them connect the laterals lines to the new sewer. Unfortunately, the pipe came in high so there are several more lateral line that were too low so a new line had to be installed to provide proper drainage. They were also removing a lot of the scaffolding on the building down the street. I had a salad for lunch. Then I had to head off to Kaiser to get my 2nd covid booster shot. On the way back I stopped at Walmart Neighborhood Market for a few (lots) of things. Lou made artichoke chicken over rice with broccoli for dinner.

Friday: (05/06) Granola and banana for breakfast. Salad for lunch. We went to the nursery and bought a bunch of plants. I got some corn and peppers for my garden to replace the ones that never sprouted from seed. I also got some color flowers for the planters. Back home, I planted them all in the garden and planters. Dawn’s baked beans and Lou’s cornbread for dinner. Otherwise, on this hit day, I just watched the sewer pipe replacement project work.

Saturday: (05/07) First thing done was to plan a new hike route and post a hike at Foothills Preserve for Tuesday. Scrambled eggs with ham and cheese and some cornbread with honey for breakfast. I swapped out the Gell batteries in one of Lou’s scooter battery packs with some LiPo batteries. I put them on the charger to see what voltage they charge too. Then I’ll get them tested for range. I put the washer back together and manually set the water level to large load. The new switch won’t get here until next week. We all went up to Redwood City to get Lou’s Mother’s day prime rib from Harry’s Hofbrau. I had my usual lasagna. Of course it also included a visit to the Saver’s Thrift store. Back Home I decided to do another search for my van. It’s been looking like new one’s won’t be available for more than a year and used one’s are almost always overpriced for worn out high mileage vans. Well, today I found a low mileage one with many of the added features I would be getting with a custom ordered van. It’s from Carvana has 15K miles for $45K. While that is more than a used van should cost, it is way low for anything I’ve seen, and I’ve been looking for quite a while. The online buying experience is not easy. The van was in the process of being bought by someone else. I continued to check it and that hold timed out after about 30 minutes so I jumped in. I’m hesitant to spend money anyway so I lost my hold myself later and it was immediately being held by someone else again. But I persisted, watched the clock and got it myself again later and completed the process. I’m supposed to pick it up 5/24, delayed a little by our next camping trip. Leftover salad for dinner.

Sunday: (05/08) Leftover lasagna for breakfast. A windy cold day. I wanted to test the range on the new Lithium batteries I put in one of lou’s scooter battery packs. The range should be around 8 miles. We all got on our scooters and rode down to Castro Street in Mountain View, a little over 4 miles. Lou’s new battery made it for over 9 miles but a couple of blocks from home. Dawn’s battery died about the same. Lou’s scooter went through three old batteries. Since the new batteries proved themselves, I ordered 6 more to reload three battery packs. Hopefully that fixes Lou’s dying batteries. A ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Chili and toast for dinner.

Monday: (05/09) Another cold breezy day. Dawn and I made a Costco and Walmart run for a few things. I checked all the remaining scooter battery packs. Not many good batteries including two of the lithium batteries. Then more van planning. Rice and diced apple for breakfast. Salad for lunch/ Chicken over rice for dinner.

Tuesday: (05/10) A cool morning. I prepared my usual hikers breakfast of a ham, egg and cheese sandwich. I met my fellow SJMW hikers at Foothills Nature Preserve for an 8.5 mile loop hike. Great weather with some gusty wind and broken clouds but really nice in the sun and great views of the bay and mountains. Back home, I checked on the construction projects and had some leftover rice and chicken for lunch. Then I had to provide an insurance verification and bank verification for my Carvana van purchase. Roast chicken with baked potato and asparagus for dinner. I rode my bike down to Walmart to get some 9volt batteries for our recliner control. It is stuck in recline position. Unfortunately, they didn’t fix it?

Wednesday: (05/11) More wind and cold. We moved my old cement mixer and the recliner loveseat out front with free signs on them. The mixer was taken in a few minutes by one of the construction workers. Our sewer project seems to be ready to pull in the last segment of pipe on our street tomorrow. The intersection of our street and the alley by the apartment being built had about 5 contractors working near it. The crew building a fence for an apartment next door, the cement contractor finishing the concrete wall of the new apartment building, electricians preparing a foundation to install a new transformer for the building, the sewer construction crew in the middle of the intersection removing a manhole, a crew installing hangers and window brows for the building, the drywall contractor moving supplies from the basement to the upper floors, and, most importantly, the honey bucket service truck came. I also attended my Wednesday webinar. Rice and banana for breakfast. Squash soup and toast for lunch. Chili beans for dinner.

Thursday: (05/12) Rice and diced apple for breakfast. The sewer construction crew pulled in the final section of pipe today. Always fun to watch construction crews. Also the apartment building crews were busy finishing the wall in the alleyway with grinding and patching. Also a crew was installing fencing. Lou’s lentil soup with toast for lunch. I did the RV tank duty and washed the windshield. We need to roll out of here tomorrow morning. While I had the date marked on my calendar, Lou was thinking we left on Sunday rather than Friday. We previously had reservations that started Sunday in Pismo Beach but changed them to go North to Sam Taylor State Park instead. I noticed the date after lunch so we shifted gears to get ready. All packed and ready now. I made a grocery shopping run and picked up dinner at Lucky Chinese Bistro. After dinner, I harvested 10 artichokes which Lou steamed and we had an after dinner snack. The rest were put in the fridge.

Friday: (05/13) Up early, showered and prepared to roll. We were on the road about 0745 just before the street would close for the construction in front of the house. Traffic was light, even through San Francoisco’s 19th avenue but there was a backup there because of lane closures. We passed our exit from Highway 101 but came into the park on different, better country roads a little North. We arrived at 1030, much too early for our campsite and there was nowhere to park to wait so we drove out to Point Reyes Station. Lou and Dawn looked around while I rested. We returned to the campground and settled in a little after 1400.

Saturday: (05/14) Granola and banana for breakfast. Lou and I erredted our tent that she and Dawn use for crafts and games while I’m out playing. Otherwise, we relaxed in the park around camp most of the day. Lou made strawberry pancakes with ham for lunch. About 1530 We took a drive. I explored some trailheads for upcoming hikes. We stopped at a garage sale and a thrift store in Geronimo. We drove through Fairfax and decided we must return to explore more there. I wanted to see more trailheads so we drove the Fairfax Bolinas Road through the mountains to Highway 1. I examined where the Bolinas Ridge trail crosses the road and how it’s located to the Pantoll Campground. I’m planning a backpack hoike through here in the future. We enjoyed the view from the top of San Francisco, Oakland and the bay. We were back to camp by 1830. Leftover spaghetti with home grown artichokes and toast for dinner.

Sunday: (05/15) A cool day today. Latkes and ham for breakfast. We all had out showers. Hamburgers for lunch. Relaxed in camp all day today. Leftover soup with toast for dinner.

Monday: (05/16) I made my usual hikers breakfast ham egg and cheese sandwich to start. I met Jeff and we both drove down to the Bear Valley Trailhead. Ludamilla and Pavel arrived and we all headed up to the top of Mt Wittenberg. We continued down to the coast trail and stopped for lunch at Sculpted Beach. Then more Coast Trail and back home on Bear Valley Trail. The Bear Valley Trail is really lunch and something like a fern Canyon with not so steep walls, just normal hillsides covered in fern. Lou and Dawn joined me for a shower. We share the shower because it takes one dollar count and four minutes to get warm. Leftover steak and artichokes with baked potatoes for dinner followed by cranberry pear compote.

Tuesday: (05/17) Lou and Dawn had fried oatmeal for breakfast. I had ham and eggs with toast. We explored the shops in the village of Fairfax. Lunch in Fairfax at the Gestalt Haus, sausages with German potato salad and coleslaw. Lou had a dental appointment at 1330 there in Fairfax. After the appointment we drove over to the Kaiser pharmacy in San Rafael to pick up a prescription. Dawn checked the stock at the Goodwill Thrift store in San Rafael. Back home by 1700 so we could run our generator for a few hours before quiet time. I had a good backache all day.

Wednesday: (05/18) I made corned beef hash and eggs for breakfast. We relaxed in camp all day. Crab salad for lunch. In the afternoon Lou and Dawn had a campfire. My back was better today. Beef noodles for dinner.

Thursday: (05/19) Leftover corned beef hash and fried eggs for breakfast. I drove Dawn over to Fairfax where she bought a book she had seen. It turns out the most shops don’t open until noon and we had arrived at 1000 so we waited around. I took a short walk in the neighborhood. While I waited for Dawn I enjoyed an ice cream cone and bought a great brownie for later. Back home I had some leftover salad for lunch, and a taste of the big brownie. We showered in the afternoon having finally learned how to prime the hot water for th ehower by running a faucet in the adjacent restroom. Normally, it takes four minutes or a $1 of the hower running to get hot water. We all shower sequentially to keep the water hot. Leftover beef noodles for dinner.

Friday: (05/20) Moving day. I relaxed in bed. My back has been bothering me, om and off, the previous few days so I started the day relaxing in bed. Lou and Dawn did much of the preparations to roll before I got up. I even got to enjoy Lou’s omelet ala “everything in the fridge” in bed. We finished preparations and rolled out a little after 1000. Traffic was high getting out to the freeway in San Rafael but not bad the rest of the way home. We stopped in Millbrae for lunch at Neal’s Cafe. I dropped Lou, Dawn and the Jeep off in San Carlos and they stopped at a couple of thrift shops and the library on their way home. I got LPG and gas in Sunnyvale, then parked at home and settled in. We had pizza for dinner. There is a problem with our inverter that appeared yesterday and persists today. It seems like the transfer really can’t decide which position to be in when the generator or utility power is present.

Saturday: (05/21) Granola and banana for breakfast. A relaxing day at home. I rode the bike to the market for a few things, like salad. Of course, I came home with much more than I went for. Broccoli salad with tuna for lunch. I did research on my van electrical system and also on the problem with the Surfside RV inverter acting funky. Now running on battery at home to lower the charge in the batteries to test better tomorrow. I also did tank duty. This RV is nice for a week with three people due to it’s 40 gallon tanks. Mac and cheese for dinner.

Sunday: (05/22) PBJ toast for breakfast. Our gardener called this morning. He hasn’t been able to get in on the street for the past two weeks and won't be coming on his regular day this coming week due to a medical problem. Our lawn was six inches high and needed to be mowed so I brought out our old electric mower and mowed the lawn. It’s only the back yard that has a lawn. I also edged it. It should be good until he can return in a couple of weeks. Salad for lunch. In the afternoon I relaxed and did research for my van build. I am rethinking using 8020 aluminum instead of all wood. Chicken pot pie minus the crust for dinner.

Monday: (05/23) Granola and banana for breakfast. We all drove up to Daly City and picked up my new to me van from Carvana. It’s a 2019 with 15K miles on it. A few papers to sign for the DMV title and we were off. Quick process. Lou and Dawn each got individual test drives with me. It only has two seats for now. Then they were off thrifting and had lunch on the way home in San Mateo at Jack’s Restaurant. I drove the van home and read the manual. Two things I needed to know. How the cruise control worked and how to open the fuel fill door. To my surprise it wasn’t at all complicated. It does.t lock, yu jt pull it open from the bottom rear. Duh!. Not key fob button, no inside button, no pull latch. And, no protection since the fuel cap is unlocked as well. Something to replace. Leftover Spanish rice for dinner.

Tuesday: (05/24) Hot day. Lou and I drove the van down to San Jose and met the termite inspector for our annual inspection. All OK. Lou visited with Ceceia down the street. Lunch at the Country Inn in San Jose. On the way home we stopped at Walmart for groceries and Harbor Freight for RV leveling ramps. Worked at escaping the heat the rest of the afternoon.Salad for dinner

Wednesday: (05/25) Granola and diced apple for breakfast. Ernie’s cooler water pump failed. I confirmed it was the pump, not the switch and then ordered a replacement. One thing about the bay area is that evaporative coolers and parts are not available here. I also weeded my garden. Then I raised the new van on blocks and crawled under it to inspect everything. All OK. I can’t get a professional inspection in my time frame due to scheduling already out more than 2 weeks everywhere and also because most shops can’t raise a tall vehicle. Then, after a shower, I cut my hair and beard, then another shower. After salad for lunch, I drove the van up Page Mill Road then out Alpine Road to Tarwater Trailhead. A good bad road test with a good climb and bumpy narrow road. No problems. I came down on Highway 9 into Saratoga. I stopped at Smart and Final and Knob Hill to get granola and tea. Then I filled the van with gas. I also stopped at Walmart for a gas log book. Later, I hooked up my OBD2 scanner and checked the van for problems. One sensor test failed with a reading of .027 for a test that should read between .03 and 1.999. It really doesn’t seem important. I’ll have to do more research to try and find out what it senses. Lou made corn on the cob with ham steaks and French fries for dinner.

Thursday: (05/26) Granola and diced apple for breakfast. I had a doctor's appointment at Kaiser this morning. My back has been bothering me and Lou spotted a lump. Since I was seeing the doctor at Lou;s insistence, she accompanied me. Dawn came along as well and visited the Library. The doctors says that the lump is just an old age thing, actually has some name but my description may be more accurate. As to the pain, she sent me to get an xray and ordered blood work so we visited the lab and drove to Kaiser Santa Clara for the x ray since the Mountain View clinic’s machine was kaput. We then had lunch at Applebee’s then I dropped Lou and Dawn off at a thrift store and I got gas for the Jeep. Back home, I installed the new cooler pump that Amazon delivered. It wasn;t easy due to the location of the cooler and a change in pump layout requiring wiring and tubing changes. Everything is cool in Ernie’s trailer now. I relaxed the remainder of the day. Lou made chili sizes for dinner.

Friday: (05/27) Granola and diced apple for breakfast. I installed the replacement water level switch in the washer. I spent some time in the new van measuring and planning. I also weeded the park strip. It had a lot of burrs that would likely enter the van with my constant in and out. Lou and Dawn had an appointment then had brunch at Coupa Cafe. When they got back, I took Dawn for a ride in the van and stopped and got my lunch at China Wok, some fried rice and coconut shrimp. At home, We all prepared dinners. I started sauerkraut potatoes with pork in the slow cooker. Lou was baking BBQ ribs in the oven. Dawn made a chicken soup with salsa and peanut butter in another slow cooker. Dawn won, we had soup over rice for dinner. Lou and I took a drive in the van after dinner.

Saturday: (05/28) I drove down to San Jose to get some lumber from the attic there at Dawn’s house. It was left there 35 years ago with the plan to make a couple of rooms up there. Never happened. Breakfast at La Victoria in San Jose. It is well seasoned wood now. I’ll use it for the van mock up and build. I also picked up three sheets of hardboard for the mock up. It is odd that it isn't much more than cardboard sheets. Back home, I put the wood away and started a little shop cleanup. It needs a lot of cleanup. Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch. Sauerkraut with potatoes and pork for dinner. I took an evening run looking for a microwave/convection oven and did a test drive on the freeway to check MPG. This is the last day of my 7 day return period.

Sunday: (05/29) Ham and eggs with toast for breakfast. Some tea in the backyard. Watched the SF Carnival parade. I tinkered with the van laying out the interior with blue tape. Salad for lunch. Leftover sauerkraut with potatoes and pork for dinner.

Monday: (05/30) Granola for breakfast. Artichokes and pork chops for lunch. Lou made my birthday cranberry pear pie today, only 5 weeks after the day. She is so much like myself. I worked in the shop until about 1400 cleaning out junk from past projects. I’ll need lots of room to work and store materials for the van soon. BBQ bibs with fries and broccoli for dinner. In the evening I placed an order for much of the materials I’ll be installing in the van. Electrical, plumbing, refrigerator, etc.

Tuesday: (05/31) Granola and berries for breakfast. Lunch from the Safeway deli. Lou had a dental appointment. Dawn and I went to the Stanford Engineeringbuilding to attend a presentation by groups providing disability assistance applications. Dawn had provided input to one of the teams. Leftover peanut butter chicken soup over rice for dinner.