Tuesday 30 June 2015

Being Water Wise

I was able to make it one full week with only one tank of water. I even had showers each day and yes a couple on the weekend to cool off. This was due to a few factors, I will share them with you now in case you want to be a bit more water wise, or if you ever find that you have to be, as in going through a drought.

The first thing was that I turned down the water pressure for my showers. That means that while I did have hot water and did adjust the water to the right temperature, the amount of water coming out of the shower head was much less. 

First you turn the hot water on a bit more than a trickle and wait for it to warm up, then you turn the cold water on just enough to cool the water down enough to shower. 

This is best done with a movable shower head so you can literally move it over your body and let it trickle down over you. This is not as fun or invigorating as a hot shower at full blast, but you get clean and use much less water.

The next thing to do is to use your drinking/washing water out of a five gallon jug, preferably with a pump on it. This will force you to see how much water you are going through. No more running the water for a minute to let it cool down, just pump and go.

If you have plants, and have to water them, it is possible (check with a garden expert) to use the grey water (the water which goes down the sinks) to water them and save the fresh water for your use.

As well if needed that grey water can be used to flush toilets. Again, I don’t go this far, but if pressed, these are a few ideas. Just using the five gallon jug for my cooking/dish washing/drinking water and the less water for showers has helped reduce my water usage.

This may seem silly, since I have found a free place to get water from and dump my tanks. Yet while this particular gas station is open and busy 24/7 I don’t see a need to abuse the privilege. As well, there most certainly come a day when I must buy my water again, and I want to remain to be water wise. Lest us not forget that winter is coming and with it, comes my forced further water restrictions. Besides, shouldn’t we all be a little more water wise?

Monday 29 June 2015

A Hot Time in the Old Town, Last Weekend

Okay, while I didn’t see any butterflies burst into flames when passing from the shade into the sunlight, it was certainly hot this weekend. Inside Wanda it hovered just over 30 C . . . in my house might I remind you. 

I did have my: vents, windows and door wide open during daylight hours. I even deployed my awning during the day, at least the afternoon. Yes, I was wearing as little and light clothing as possible and went for a few walks (with a shirt on) a number of times. 

When I had Jenny running, in the evenings I was able to have the “fan” setting on the air conditioning running. I found that this was no help at all as it just blew hot air on me. With a natural breeze there is a bit of cool that comes with it. With the fan forcing air down from the thing on the roof, it was hot air. I let it blow for a few minutes before I decided that this sucks and turned it off.

I tried to putter around on the computer and eventually got my editing done, but little more. It was just too hot during the day to do much of anything. I thought of going for a bike ride, but the heat of the first walk killed that idea. 

I am not complaining though, after all while it was this hot in my trailer this weekend.

(That measures around 34C.)

It has also been this cold in my trailer this winter 

(That measures around -18C.)

That is what I have measured inside my trailer. It has been colder outside I will survive and adapt and keep pressing onwards. I will achieve my new goal of my credit cards paid off any my truck and trailer refinanced into one before my two year anniversary (the 5th of December).

I will continue to acclimatize to the weather. They key, I think, is not hide in air conditioning all the time. Your body adapt to the heat or the cold. I will need to if I plan to go for that bike ride before long.I still have the blessed bike in my back seat, so I might as well use it.

Friday 26 June 2015

Weathering the Warm Weather

With the temperature seeming to be hovering around plus 30C this week and for the foreseeable future you may be wondering how I am faring.

It is true that Wanda has air conditioning, but that is of little use to me. The amount of power it takes requires me to be plugged in to pretty much 120 V / 30 Amp power. Jenny only puts out 20 Amps max.

So, that means that the only time I can use my air conditioner or my microwave is when I am at a campsite. Since I am not an idiot I choose a campsite with a bit of shade. So even when camping, I don’t use my air conditioner. 

How do I manage in the heat? For one, when possible or needed I deploy my awning, to keep the sun off of the windows and door. For another I open both of my top vents all the way. I then prop open the bathroom door, to let a bit of airflow through between the vents. Then, of course I prop open the door and open all of the windows. On the parries, the wind is always blowing, so a nice breeze comes in and cools the place down.

I survive and I am okay, I have never lived in a house with air conditioning anyways, so I have always just managed with the heat of summer. Just like in winter, I just take what comes and deal with it.

Thursday 25 June 2015

Dinner Delights

Okay, so I tried out my idea to make my frozen food a bit more appetizing; here’s how it turned out.

How did I do it?

First of all, toast two slices of bread, then spread mayo on it and put on a slice of cheese (or approximation thereof) on each.


Then take out said defrosted, frozen dinner from fridge.

Scoop some into the pan.

Add the tomato sauce (in the easy pour container).

Cook it up. Or rather, since this mixture is already cooked, all you are doing is heating it up. For fun you can add some shredded cheese or whatever takes your fancy.

Finally when it is cooked up enough, spread over toast.

I may not put it on toast each night and I need to play with the amount of sauce to put in the pan. In the end, this is working as well as helping to bring out the flavours more. That and yes, this is not a cooked patty of food (that should never be a patty).

With this, I will have food for a couple of months and be able to save cash. I will try another recipe next time to mix it up. If I could trust myself to make smaller batches, I might cook something else in a month, yet I fear I will then have too much to freeze.

Wednesday 24 June 2015

I Slept Through Another Crime

It is not a nice thing to say that you didn’t hear anything and slept through it all, even though it happened not far from where you were sleeping.

Yet again the business that I park nearby (across the road from) got broken into. As I look back now I remember kinda, sorta dozingly waking up and wondering what that alarm was all about before rolling over and going back to sleep.

When I woke up there was what looked like a van parked in front of the door and working on it. I thought this was odd at four in the morning, I almost called the cops. I watched them for a bit and realized that they were repairing the front door . . . criminals don’t fix stuff.

When I was leaving for work, a lady flagged me down and asked me if I saw or heard anything. I said I saw the repair truck at four this morning but nothing else. She told me that their business was broken into along with 12 others in the area. Nothing much was taken but the front door was smashed in. 

Part of the problem with industrial areas is that they are dead at night. I mean nobody but me and maybe a few truckers are there at night. This attracts criminals to do their nasty, nefarious business. Do you think I should install cameras outside of Wanda to film the goings on outside?

It still bogles me why anyone would bother to break in and steal stuff. I don’t get it, why? Very few businesses handle cash and those that do take precautions, so you wouldn’t get much. What then? Steal stuff? Seriously, who buys this crap and how much can you get? A fraction of what it is worth? Why bother? I say put that energy into doing something productive like get a job or start a business. 

I just feel bad that I slept through the whole thing, and was no help identify the criminals. Then again I am used to sleeping as cars do 60 kph right by my bedroom window. Yeah, the wind shakes the trailer . . . that’s fun. 

Apparently they have cameras so here’s hoping that they catch the thieves.

Tuesday 23 June 2015

Back on Track . . . and Poor Again

Okay, first things first, I did get my bills paid and I did do everything that I set out to do with my paycheque. In the end there will be enough left in the bank to keep me above zero until my next payday. 

This is an all too common cycle for me, but I am getting ahead and making progress. I choose to see the positives. For one Card #1 is paid off and remains so. For two I am staying out of the overdraft. I have put the money that I borrowed from my contingency fund back. Finally, I did make a large payment on Card #2.

I expect to have it fully paid off, hopefully by the end of next month. We shall see how the next paycheque turns out, if I have a bit extra to put on it. Hopefully I will be able to put a larger payment on the late July paycheque to get it done and paid off . . . again.

I do have enough cash set aside to do what I need to do and yes I do have a bit of Madmoney. All in all, I am doing good and getting ahead. It just so happens that every cent is spoken for or allocated for something. Such is life, and something that we all must live with, am not alone in this.

I have an idea how to solve the problem with my latest batch of food. It is a bit too solid, as in when cooked it is a bit of a paste consistency. I realized that what I need to do is add some liquid to liquefy it somewhat. I decided to try some tomato sauce. 

I bought a few cans of tomato sauce and will open one at a time and pour the contents into a container that I will keep in the fridge. What I will do is put my food mixture in the pan and then pour a bit of tomato sauce over it and hopefully this will break up the paste and make it more palatable. 

Don’t get me wrong, it tastes fine, but eating what looks like a hamburger patty of lasagna just feels wrong. I will let you know how it goes tomorrow. I hope this works as this is a lot of food to go through, and if I can keep this up, will keep my food budget under control.

Monday 22 June 2015

The Madmoney Madness

I had a nice and relaxing time at McLean Creek, I slept in, rested and had a good time. As I did, I got a chance to reflect on a suggestion that has come up time and again: Madmoney.

The term “Madmoney” is coined by a friend of mine that refers to essentially personal spends. It is money that you set aside for you to “Go Mad” with and spend on yourself and do whatever you want with. 

For me, the trouble with this is that this amount that I budget ($20.00 per payday) is always the first budget item that I cut. Even when I do have it, I may go for one meal at a fast food place and then end up spending it on some necessary item that I didn’t budget for. It never lasts that long and rarely is spent on me. 

This gets to the real trouble, the fact that I just don’t feel like my money is actually mine. I feel like the scrawny kid who always has his lunch money taken by the big bullies day after day. How long will it be before the kid no longer feels that his lunch money is his?

I have been servicing never ending debt and living on such tight budgets for years. It has been going on for so long that my paycheque doesn’t feel like mine anymore, it belongs to all of the credit card companies and my other debtors. The cash just flows through me, it isn’t mine. Raises and bonuses don’t excite me, after all I don’t get to keep it; it doesn’t go to benefit me.

That is what this odyssey is for, to take back my paycheque. Once my credit cards are paid off and the two loans are refinanced, then, finally I will feel like my paycheque is mine. Maybe then I will be able to actually spend some Madmoney on me. Until then I just need these cards done and will live on little to see that happen as soon as possible. I will still try to budget a bit of Madmoney, emphasis on “try.”

Friday 19 June 2015

The Continuing Struggle Against the F’it Impulse

I admit it, and I have never denied it . . . I am not perfect. I am not the perfect model of fiscal frugalness or thrifty perfection. I try, but I falter now and again (hence why I am in this mess to begin with). Now and again I just say F’it and buy something that technically I don’t need. 

When I have a card paid off, or if I charge just a hundred or so on it, that card is swiftly back down to zero. I have also consistently stayed out of my overdraft for the last few months. 

Yet, in the last few days I have put a bit more on Card #2. With my 1 year anniversary of living in Wanda full-time, approaching, I really wanted to go somewhere to celebrate this. I didn’t want to dip into my contingency fund, but I have done that a bit over the last while. I intend to top it back up to $500.00 this payday. 

Since I have approximately $2000.00 on Card #2 anyways I figured F’it and charge the reservation of the camping site onto it. Then I got thinking that I really need a weekend out of the city this weekend . . . so I charged that. Naturally I needed some special groceries for this weekend, yet I didn’t have any cash in the food budget left, so I charged that ($40.00).

As I sat and unwound from my active evening of laundry and running around, I reflected as to why I did this. Why do I do this? I am certain that I am not alone in this impulse, so identifying it is key and would be helpful to myself and others. As we all need to curb future F’it impulses, in order to maintain control over your finances. 

I came to the conclusion that when the balance on the card is up high enough that I won’t be able to pay it off in a payday, then it kinda shifts over to a “Medium Term Debt.”What do I mean by “Medium Term Debt?” Well, a Card grows to become a debt that is going to take me a few months to pay off I see it differently. I start to say, what’s the harm of a little treat or two piled ontop of the already sizable debt? Proportionately this is not that big of a deal and not that much, when compared to what is already on the card, right?

Wrong! All of these “Little Treats” add up to a sizable chunk, and if left unchecked can run that card right back up to its limit. That is why we all need (myself included) constant vigilance against the F’it impulse. 

Once in a while a genuine treat is fine, if you have a plan to pay it off, fine. These impulses, like the one I have described are dangerous. Such treats should be budgeted for and paid for with cash that you have put aside. Yes, little treats now and again are nice and life should be celebrated, yet doing so should not financially sink you. As with the rest of life, Balance is key.

Thursday 18 June 2015

Full Circle Booked

I have booked my site for McLean Creek for the weekend of July 12. I had looked around but the other sites were booked, or non reservable. It seems fitting that I go back there one year to the day that I have started to live in Wanda.

It was the morning of Saturday July 12 of last year that I loaded up what I had in my room into my trailer. The first place I drove was to McLean Creek for the weekend to sort through and find a home for everything. I was so nervous and second –guessing everything, unsure that I had made the right move.

Okay, back to the present now. I was tired so I slept in this morning, so I didn’t get any chapters read. I have a feeling that I won’t do any reading tonight. As it stands I am still tired and the workday has yet to begin. Considering I am on my feet all day and constantly moving, I will likely plop tonight. Tomorrow night I will sleep well and sleep in (as much as I can) on Saturday morning. 

Time marches on, and so . . . work calls.

Wednesday 17 June 2015

Relaxing Night, Busy Morning

I had a busy day at work yesterday, so I relaxed last night. This morning I have hit the ground running. I am already busy at work but I did get two chapters edited this morning. 

My mind is wandering to where to go for my anniversary of being in Wanda for a full year (on the 12th of July). Have to run all, work is calling.

Tuesday 16 June 2015

Almost Crowded Out

My little street that I park on at night during the week was filled with not only the large semi-trucks that are usually there but also a few RV’s. I had to park back near where the construction site is. 

Since a bunch of construction workers work there, I don’t like parking near there as they need the street space to park, since they can’t park in the construction site. So, I moved when I got up, shortly after four this morning. 

It meant that my drive to work was quick and uneventful. It was interesting to note that there are yet more people living in RV’s, more so now that the weather is warmer. I have mixed feelings knowing that I am not alone and that the ranks of those living in RV’s are growing. 

For one, it is a sort of vindication for my decision and validates this lifestyle. For the other it is disheartening that more and more people for one reason or another are foregoing living in a fixed place and choosing this mobile and let’s face it, unstable lifestyle. Why should anyone have to live in an RV to pay down debt and get ahead? 

With the threats of rising interest rates that means that that sooner or later mortgage payments will be going up. Couple that with the fact that a healthy portion of people can’t absorb any increase in mortgage payments. Add that up and you have a looming crisis and possibly an “Economic Refugee Camp” coming to a big box store parking lot near you. All it will take is a percentage point or two rise in the prime rate.

Okay, back to my life and what I was able to get done. Last night I just plopped and rested, I even went to bed early. This morning, however, after I moved, I did get a bunch of work done on reading and editing book one. 

I am confident that by the end of this pass it will be ready for an editor. I just need an editor, the right editor, to edit this and all future works; someone who can and will understand the material and Tanea. For now, I will focus on editing this book and hope that it helps me focus on crafting next book.

I will let the world take care of itself and just focus my life and what I need to take care of. It is only fair after all, since the world leaves me alone to solve my problems myself.

Monday 15 June 2015

So . . . Apparently I Can’t do Small

I tried, I really did. I tried to make a small batch but it just grew bigger and bigger. Soon it was back to my usual massive stock pot size. I fell back on an old recipe that I have made in the past, and it worked out great. 

I made a lasagna dish that I have made before so I knew it would work. It may seem a bit odd to put a hamburger helper lasagna dish inside a taco shell, but it works. Not to mention that it’s: tasty, filling, nutritious and easy to make. I dipped into my contingency fund a bit to do this but at least I have food again.

I did start to get going on my editing of Book One and it is coming along fine, I am having fun. The small change that I made is the addition of “pins” that each Guard earns for either length of service or other acts of merit. This is similar to earning medals, but these pins are attached to a Guard’s scabbard. Pins that a particular unit (Squad, Unit, Section, or Detachment) earns are attached to the command armour for that unit, under the brass nameplate. 

For the first time I deployed my stabilizer jacks when in a parking lot. This let me have a bit of comfort as the trailer did not sway when I moved. As I walked around the parking lot I counted no less than ten RV’s in this parking lot alone, and most of these were there before me and were there when I left this morning. 

This shows that there are many more people doing what I am doing. Not a good sign of our economy, or cost of living . . . then again, maybe it is just me. As always, I persevere and keep plodding along. Soon October will be here and finally the last of my credit card debt will be eliminated. That is indeed a happy thought.

Friday 12 June 2015

Birthday Reflection

Okay, I didn’t blog yesterday as I was having internet problems and by the time it was fixed it was time to actually start work.

It is interesting to note that this time last year I was committed to living in Wanda full time. This was when I started to pare down and get rid of all of what wouldn’t fit in Trea or Wanda. I was still paying bits of all three cards and still feeling uneasy about what I was about to do. One year later, this is how things stand for me.

One year later: 

Card #1 is paid off.
Card #2 is paid off.
Okay, Card #2 has a small bit on it, but it will be paid off by the end of next month.
I am consistently staying out of overdraft. 
I have $500.00 in a contingency fund (which will continue to grow).
I can live anywhere and am self-sufficient (okay, still need access to: Food, Water, Gasoline, and a place to dump my tanks).  

This only leaves the dreaded Card #3 which should be done by the end of October.  After which things will start to get fun for me. Okay, living in an RV in winter arriving is not fun . . . trust me (come on El NiƱo).  What will happen, probably in December, is that I will refinance my loans.

This will let me focus on paying down that debt and building my savings account equally. That, for me, will be fun, to see my savings steadily grow, month after month. I figured that since I have frozen my butt off to pay the banks, why not freeze my butt off to pay me?

I will keep going and not go on any vacation until after Card #3 is paid off and I have the money in the bank. I may or may not even go for a vacation this year, and certainly not during the warmer months. Such is the price I must pay to get this task done. A trip to the coast over Christmas is likely.

I simply need these cards finally dead. I need to be on the positive side of savings and debt once and for all. With: car, truck and mortgage payments there is an end date, it has a fixed end. With credit cards there is no end to them, not unless you do something drastic.

The point of all of this is to say that things have improved for me over the past year and things are steadily looking up. I choose to look at the things that are getting better for me and that I am steadily moving towards my goals. 

Wednesday 10 June 2015

Another Day, Another Foot In Front of the Other

I seem to have gone through my water, sooner than expected. I will buy a jug of water when I go interim grocery shopping tonight. 

I need to buy a few essentials in order to help get me through till payday. I refuse to dip into my contingency fund or a credit card, unless it is absolutely essential.  I still have some resources and other tricks up my sleeve, I will be fine.

I have maintained my progress through the latest edit of Book One. This is an enjoyable process where I get to put in a few more titbits of information here and there. I also get to tweak and massage the story a bit more before it goes to the editor that I will need to hire. This book is now ready to find a publisher . . . yet another challenge to be overcome.

One thing is for certain, no matter what comes my way, I will keep plodding forward. I will survive, and yes, I will thrive. 

Tuesday 9 June 2015

Another Batch Wasted

On the weekend, Sunday specifically, I made another batch of stuff to freeze, so I could cook up small amounts of it over the next while. It started out so well, it looked and smelled good. It was an enlarged and exaggerated version of beef noodle.

I cooked it up as I always did and let it simmer, bubbling for hours on low heat, to make sure that I didn’t burn the bottom and it worked. The next trick is for me to leave it in the fridge for a day, so that it cools down and has time for the flavours to blend.

That was where things went wrong. I did not alter my usual routine of turning the fridge off during the day at work yesterday. It was an unusually hot day yesterday and so the fridge was not kept cool enough by my blue ice pack. So what happened was that dumb-dumb me just spoiled what was about ten pounds and two months of food.

While I did not blow my entire food budget on this batch, it was a sizable chunk of it. I still have other food and a modest amount of my food budget in reserve. I will just eat what I have and feed myself as cheaply as I can until payday comes around on the 22nd.  I will just pretend that I am back in college.

Life is one big learning experience and every time you do a specific task you learn something new. Sometimes it is when things go right, other times it is when things go wrong. We tend to learn more when things go wrong than when they go right. The smart thing to do is to only broadcast when you do things right and not wrong . . .  Ah well; I guess I’m a rebel.

As for me, I think I will stick to smaller batches and go from there. That and to spend the propane and leave the bloody fridge on during one of the hottest bloody days of the year . . . ah well, we live and learn.

I have started to edit Tanea book one again, so as to get me back in the spirit of things as well as tweak a few minor things here and there in the story. Again, it will be fun and relaxing for me, and hopefully help me get moving on Book Two.

Monday 8 June 2015

Completed the “Prairie Swing” in Wanda This Weekend

I have lived in Wanda in temperatures from -30C to +30C as this weekend it got up to 30C. On the prairies the temperature can and will swing 60 degrees in the course of a year (if you say but it’s a dry cold I will smack you). I find this bit of information interesting, as the weather is always changing and shifting from one of these extremes towards the other. This keeps life interesting.

All in all it was a good weekend with a few annoyances, but mostly I do my best to just take it all in stride and constantly move forward. 

For one I got Wanda back, but when I went to pick her up, the drop cloth sheets were still inside her (from the workers). That and one heat vent register was not put back on, sure it is just a couple of screws but the job wasn’t finished. Then there was the fact that she needed a good sweeping, with small bits of construction debris here and there. I made sure to point this out to the gal at the service desk. Being as it was Saturday, the technicians were not there to chastise, so this left me to rectify the situation. 

The important thing was that, for the most part, the work was done. The back wall was repaired and the tub was installed and done at less of a cost than they quoted. The frustration with the service department at this RV Dealership is that they seem to see the customer as an annoyance, rather than their focus. Again, it was the little things that were just not there the attention to the small details which leaves a lasting impression. When it comes to this experience, I chose to look at the fact that Wanda was fixed and I have her back.

The second bit of frustrating news is that Uncle Stephen got a hat trick. For the third year in a row, what was a small Tax Refund for me turns into a tax bill. This time to the tune of almost three hundred dollars. Somehow they just magically assess me for more taxes due and send me the bill . . . I suppose someone has to pay for all of those senators’ lavish lifestyles. Oh joy, another bill. With this experience, I just am thankful that it wasn’t a larger bill . . . I just grin and bear it as I pay yet more taxes.

The other annoyances were so small that they are not worth mentioning, so I just ignore them and move on.

All in all, things are going well, the weather is warm, and I choose to see that my bills are dropping one by one. With each day, with each bit of savings, I am working towards my future. I don’t plan to live in Wanda for the rest of my life, but for now, she is what I need. In the warm weather of the summer, living in Wanda is easy, winter I can deal with . . . not enjoy mind you, but I can deal with it.

A happy point is that I did found a place to dump and fill Wanda within the city, not too far from work. More astonishing is that this particular gas station doesn’t charge a thing for this service. I will try to come to some arrangement with them. 

Sure they are not charging for this, and that is their choice, but let’s be fair I will be back every week until winter comes and drive away with a full tank of water. With the fact that they will be charged (by the city) for every drop of that water, I should at least talk to the manager and offer to pay something. The happy note is that I have a reliable source of water and that is something. 

I have said it before and I will say it again, your outlook defines how things that happen to you, affect you. If you choose to see the positive and ignore the negative, you will be the better for it. I will be the first one to admit that I continue to struggle with this. 

I have my up and down days, but I still work and strive to be a positive person. A negative person is just grumpy and nasty to deal with, who wants that in your life. Never forget that if you are that grumpy person, you can’t walk away from yourself, you are stuck with you, so at least be someone you can live with. 

Do what needs to be done now, but keep an eye to the future and keep your eye on the prize that you are striving towards. Having a worthwhile goal to work towards, helps you greatly in this regard, that I can assure you from personal experience. 

Friday 5 June 2015

Things Are Looking Up

Okay so I had a few bits of good news yesterday, all of which culminated in the starting of a positive trend. This is a much needed aspect of my life that has been missing. 

The first bit of good news is that Wanda is fixed and considerably less than expected. So that means that the repair people at the RV dealership were both below budget and quicker than estimated. 

I decided to stay in the hotel until Saturday morning and pick Wanda up on Saturday. Why? Since I have already paid for the hotel room until Saturday, if I checked out yesterday after work, I would probably be still charged for last night. 

Besides, there is this work BBQ that one of our customers/suppliers has every year that I am going to this afternoon. So this mini-break is going to continue until tomorrow morning cause I don’t feel like skipping it in order to pick up Wanda.

The last bit of good news was a nice chat with an old friend that I had yesterday afternoon. It is always good to reconnect with much-missed people in one’s life. 

The only bit of frustration was that I was not able to book a campsite for Saturday and Sunday nights, ah well, I will live and camp another day. 

The happy news is that Sunday is payday, so this brings me one more step closer to my goal of financial freedom. Speaking of which, my revised estimates puts late October as the date that I will finally pay off Card #3. That means that in November I can redo both (truck and trailer) loans into one consolidated loan, hopefully in time for my two year anniversary of this odyssey. 

Thursday 4 June 2015

My Wanda-Checker is Broken

There is a mirror which hangs from the centre of Trea’s windshield which lets me look up into to make sure that Wanda is still with me and okay. Well, after dropping off Wanda for service, that mirror now shows traffic behind me . . . quite unnerving. 

On a serious note, it is a bit odd to adjust to driving without Wanda behind me. For one Trea’s acceleration has improved and it is easier to park. Or rather it is easier to find places to park, but I almost have to relearn how to park, you know “within the lines” . . . literally. 

I was able to check into a hotel and it wasn’t too expensive. It is the same one that I stayed in the last time Wanda was in the shop. Again, paying someone for a place to sleep seems odd and wrong to me. It's funny how your perspective on things can change.

Today, after work I will drive around to a few different RV dump stations to try to find one that is: up and running, has water and is not stupidly expensive to dump. After all, I still have that problem to solve, as in finding a new place to dump on a weekly basis, and more importantly, where to get my water. 

Sure I can dump at any RV dump station, so emptying my grey water and black water tanks are not a problem it is buying water, and I really don’t want to go back to buying water at the grocery store for 3 dollars for 5 gallons. I like having showers and, you know, running water.

Wednesday 3 June 2015

Wanda In for Service

I managed to get up and get Wanda in for her service first thing this morning. All is looking well and I should have her back by Saturday. We shall see how things go, so for now I will call a hotel home until I get Wanda back.

Tuesday 2 June 2015

Paying it Forward, By Paying Me

Okay, so I called the guy who hit me yesterday and asked if he had the money. He told me that he didn’t and that shortly after we last talked in January that he lost his job due to the downturn in the oil industry. 

He said that he was on some sort of disability (I didn’t go into it) and asked if he could make payments of some kind and so I agreed. I have the room on a credit card to pay for this damage so I will charge it to a card pay it and then pay that card off first. This will take at least two months to do, so either by the end of July or August this damage will be paid for. 

I will budget that he is not going to pay me back and treat any money he gives me as extra and try to put it right into savings. I can and will get through this, but this is the situation which will push me paying off the dreaded Card #3 until October or November.

I still don’t want to be a jerk but this leaves me paying for something that is not my fault. On one hand I almost want to tell the guy not to bother, that he has bigger issues to deal with. If I did that, however, that would come across as pity from me and an insult to him and his pride. 

I understand the need to pay back a debt, that honour must be satisfied. I know that he wants to, as he left me a note when he could have just driven off. He has not tried to negotiate or be a jerk about the cost of the repairs or what he should pay for or what he shouldn’t. 

This got me thinking . . . what if I was able to crowdfund the cost of the repairs? That way I could say that others paid the debt for him and it would be help from others and yet this debt would still be paid. 

If for any reason there is extra money raised then I will simply give that to him. I am doing okay and just want to try to help a fellow human being out. I haven’t met him and only talked to him on the phone a few times, but I just want to do the right thing. 

For me, taking money from an unemployed guy is not right, and neither is insulting his pride by telling him not to bother. Even worse would be to report it to the insurance company and have them go after him for the cash . . . sure Wanda would get fixed but he would get shredded. So if you feel motivated please donate to fix Wanda, and in so doing, help someone out who is down on his luck. 

Monday 1 June 2015

Completely Out of Communication

It is always something for me to get used to when going to McLean Creak . . . I have no cell or internet service out there. So there I am unable to check anything on the internet or even phone or text anyone.  I am forced to relax and just unwind.

I did relax and I did do some of what I had planned. I did restring one of the blinds that I needed to. Wanda has four of these blinds that have a complex stringing method that in the end will allow you to bring those blinds down part way or all of the way. 

The blinds are thick enough that when fully down they block the light completely. On one of them the string broke so I had to buy more of the special string and then restring it. I got it done, there is another one that I need to do.

Other than that, I didn’t do much; I didn’t even break out the bike. I did relax and yes get my fill of water, so that was nice. Still no update on where I will be able to dump and fill on a regular basis. 

I will need to do some cleaning tonight as well as make a list of what needs to be fixed on Wanda. Of course, tonight I will phone the guy who hit me back on the 21st of January and see if he has the money for me. I will update you on that too tomorrow.