Saturday, January 21, 2017

Connecting with Today

I can’t believe it’s  been two months since I’ve written an entry in our travel blog.  Actually I’ve written several entries  (in my head)  but circumstances have not been conducive to getting them out on the blog.   This morning,  I’m feeling compelled to break the pattern of writing blog posts in my head, and get my thoughts out on ‘digital’ paper.

I’m afraid that that my thoughts are a bouncing all over the place this morning.  Hoping that writing a bit will help ground me today.  

The bus is parked in Quartizite, Arizona with a bunch of its cousins (we’re at a convergence of  other Bluebird owners).   

The hum of our generator makes it feel a bit like a truckstop, but looking out the window it’s easy to tell we’re at a Wanderlodge owners rally.   There are about 50 or so other Bluebirds circling the communal fire pit in the first row and a second row of Bluebirds has started as new arrivals trickle in.  This is the  second  time at the annual Bluebird rally at “Q”  (Quartizite); we were here last year for the 10th anniversary.

Craig has taken his morning coffee to join the huddle of men that have gathered by the firepit.  It feels like this is where all the big decisions that will shape the day will be made.  The lack of women is noticeably obvious.  

The silly side of me wondered if all the women were off ‘marching’.    (Today, in Washington, and around the world, women are marching in protest and solidarity - on the first full day of Trump’s presidency).

I can’t help but wonder who that SMART woman was that thought of the timing of this strategic move.  Redirecting some of the press cameras away from our new president on his first full day in office - even for a bit -- reminding him about the impact that 50% of the population can have!

Feeling a bit isolated by the lack of like minded colleagues  around me  and a bit jealous of the millions of women who are surrounded by their sisters today.   The Bluebird Rally  is certainly a ‘man’s event’.  Whether it be the “men’s tech talk”  or the caravan of jeeps who will take the 60 mile off road trip to the Desert Bar, the daily schedule is planned by men for men.    It’s okay;  men as well as women are entitled to plan events that revolve around their needs.   I’m not sure why,  but I’m not feeling inspired to join the “women’s morning walk”  or “women’s craft time” this morning.

Perhaps it’s because  the reality of the day - first day with our new president is one that makes it impossible to avoid thinking about.  I’m not going to get political here and will instead just note it as fact.  We have a new president.   The future feels uncertain.  Trying to be hopeful that the power is in the people.  But don’t want to bury my head in the sand either!

Maybe part of this blog post is similar to Ferdi Serim making this Facebook post.  

Thinking about the many old journal’s and diaries with entries like
Temperature  54 degrees.. Price of milk  $2.89 a gallon

What is it that I would put as a measure of what today was like?
What quantifiable?   

One optimistic indicator I could record is our solar energy use!

Craig just  joyfully announced that our solar panels are generating 300 watts right now-- an all time high.  Definitely indicating that the recent redesign he made to allow the 4 panels on the top of the bus to tilt is working much better than the previous design (where the goat rail and the storage pods shadows were challenging our ability to generate optimal energy)

Craig has a new strategy of running the generator in the morning instead of at night to recharge the batteries  to about 80 percent (which will happen more quickly and efficiently in the morning at the point where the batteries are the most discharged).  

Craig is an amazingly talented man who loves to figure out things like optimizing solar energy use or optimizing our bandwidth availability.  He’s constantly tweaking things to make life on the road work for us.  Since we are both working from the road -- these are important indicators for us!   Without  bandwidth I couldn’t be able to meet my daily responsibilities as an online teacher  and Craig wouldn’t be able to keep systems at his school running remotely.

So… the beginning of this 3 week period boondocking in the desert has me worried a bit.  It’s going to warrant strategic use of our ‘bandwidth’ as well as increased awareness of our use of electricity and water.    I suppose its good for us as humans to experience a lack of abundance and to work on conserving!  But it does feel a bit like being on a ‘diet’ -- planning our daily allocation!  Dieting (whether it be food, energy, and bandwidth)  tends to put me in a more fragile mood.    And perhaps the fact that  I’m dieting in all three of those domains right now is contributing to my strange mood today.

I miss the free flow of seeing my family and friends whenever I want, and having to do ‘binge visits’ to see the grandkids  like my recent two week  visit back east.   But I’m also thankful to have an amazing life partner who brings me on new adventures and causes me to stretch and grow.

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