One of my mother’s many favorite sayings is “Into every life, a little rain must fall.” I always defy this statement, affirming “Not in my life…that’s not my truth!” Which is typically followed by a clap of thunder and a microburst.
I seem to have hit a little stroke of “rain” lately. It started with my trip inland to visit my favorite asphalt riverbank, Eugene’s Valley Center Mall. I love this parking spot right alongside the cool waters of the Willamette River, parked beneath the shady sycamores. (Pay no attention to that mega Macy’s and Regal Cineplex 16 out the other side of the Winnie.)
I came in to Eugene to visit some friends Scott and Jan, and have my tail lights checked at Hitch Pro and Tow. My tow lights have not worked properly since I left Ventura, where the Winnie had her “belly work” done, replacing the sheered frame rail extensions. While there, I had the SMI Stay in Play braking system installed to replace my old Brake Buddy. I think it must have been Barber RV of Ventura’s first SMI install, as it took them all day (at $120/hr) and they never did get it right. The problem with my tow lights (driver’s side turn signal receiving continuous signal, therefore would not flash, nor would it turn off, hence draining the Tracker battery.) Turns out the $115 converter box for the tow lights that Barber RV sold me had already failed, and I’d been unknowingly driving for who knows how long with no supplemental braking system.
And then, this happened…
Thankfully, I was six miles north of Walport on Highway 101, approaching the little town of Seal Rock. I was able to pull over to safety and successfully change the tire in front of the Yuzen Sushi restaurant. However, I hope Karma does its thing for the shrunken Japanese man who owns the restaurant. “This busy season! Need to move!” He threatened a tow truck if I wasn’t gone by opening time. This, after he stood there with his small yappy dog and watched over my shoulder while I changed the tire with an ace bandage on my foot. I asked him, “Where is your heart, sir? You see I have a problem here!” His response, “That’s your problem!”
And after 3.5 years and 30,000 miles together through thick and thin, how could I have missed that the Little Tracker has been covering all those miles in a set of “snow tires?” Tire stores will not accept the liability of replacing one “regular” tire, mixing with the remaining three “studless” snow tires. So it was all or nothing. Baby now has a new set of shoes!
So…on to the ace bandage and my own “blow out.” I have injured the fascia in the bottom of my left foot. It happened when I stepped wrong on a rock and my foot slid backwards, hyper extending the tendon in the arch of my foot. I was halfway around a five mile loop when it happened, a pain so severe I almost lost my lunch and contemplated testing the SOS button on the Delorme. After a visit to the podiatrist, I am throwing every treatment I can find at it. Frozen water bottles, tennis balls, and even “ASTYM” (augmented soft tissue mobilization), which involves scraping the bottom of my foot with the side of a spoon, resulting in a gritty grinding sensation of the tendon, second only to fingernails on a blackboard.….all which are helping neither my foot nor my bad mood. I went from planning a trip around Mt Rainer’s Wonderland Trail to “wondering” how I was going to get around the grocery store. Don’t judge a woman by her footwear selection until you have walked a mile in her orthodics!
My lucky streak of finding “the last available campsite” seems to also be running out, leaving me few options but casino-docking. Not my favorite venue. I am grateful for the free parking, but even that is drying up. Some casinos are now enforcing gambling in exchange for the privilege to park within the painted square of their crowded, slanted asphalt lot. Judging from the crowds I have seen, RVers are among their best customers. And possibly their most affluent. I am not a gambler despite the title of this blog post. So it is painful for me to feed money into a machine until I reach the magic “points” required to cash in my winnings for a parking pass.
The casino’s “All-you-care-to-eat” buffets are certainly a bargain along the coast, particularly those offering seafood. But it’s tough to enjoy the ambiance for fear I will soon resemble the clientele…people my own age in walkers and “scoots” because they have grown too large for their own two legs to comfortably support them. I want to walk but can’t, which exacerbates my unfair judgment of those that can walk but choose not to…
So yes, “Into every life, some rain must fall,” and this is just a passing cloud in the great big sky of life, but it feels like a summer monsoon. Some say “blogs are fiction.” Marketing. At the very worst, “lies.” No one tells the real story. All you read are glowing tales of sunshine and lollipops. But maybe that’s because when the proverbial shit hits the fan, there’s not much time to blog. All resources go toward research, phone calls, negotiations. One tends to retreat. Suffer from perceptual narrowing. It’s tough to share at a time like that. Nobody sends postcards saying “Life sucks right now. Glad you’re not here!” It gives me a new respect for those who have the courage and tenacity to keep blogging in the face of adversity.
Tow light repair…$335
Four new Tracker tires…$485
Online banking from the road? PRICELESS
For all else, there’s MasterCard