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Archive for the ‘Vacation’ Category

A friend in need is a friend indeed.

Jeff and I will do anything for a friend in need.  I’d give the shirt off my back and walk around in my bra if a friend needed my shirt.  Recently Jeff and I helped a friend who is going to be moving to Texas but couldn’t afford the high cost of a moving van, plus gas, food and lodging.  So when we heard of our friend’s plight we said, “Hey! We’ve got a 33’ toy hauler just sitting around.  Why don’t we load her goods into the trailer and take a road trip to Texas! We’ll make a little vacation out of it!” So that’s what we did.  Little did we know, this would be an adventure on so many different levels!

It started with prepping the truck and trailer.  We haven’t used our toy hauler since we sold all the motorcycles and ATVs.  We used it once to take the Jeep out to Joshua Tree, but other than that, it’s been sitting in storage for four years.  To prepare, the truck gets a tune up, oil change and finally the seal of approval.  The trailer gets a cleanup, tires inspected, water tank filled, battery charged, poopy chemicals applied to the blank tank and it’s also ready to go.

Adventure #1:
The first day of our vacation is actually Memorial Day and we head down to our friend’s house in San Diego to load up.  She lives in a small house so we weren’t too concerned about running out of storage room in the trailer.  Heck if we fit the jeep in the trailer we can fit her small supply of household items!  So after all her boxes, night stands, dressers, boxes of clothes, kitchen stuff and various odds and ends are loaded we finish the load with the mattress and box spring.  The tailgate of the trailer is raised the inside boxes are secured and we’re just about ready.  We’re about to leave and I’m worried about the trailer backend hitting the house as we turn to leave.  So I get out and spot for the house.  We never even considered looking up!  It’s just been so long since we’ve used the trailer… So Jeff starts pulling away and he clears the house but little did I know that the trailer’s ladder hooked a cable line from the power pole above and it rips the ladder off the trailer.  Oooops.   The powerlines, telephone and cable lines are swinging wildly.  So Jeff gets out, throws the broken ladder into the trailer muttering profanities and away we go.  My bad!

Adventure #2:
We start heading out on the 8 east.  We’re laughing and having a grand ol time just shooting the shit as we drive.  The plan is to continue driving until we get to Tucson.  Well we’re just outside of Yuma Arizona when we hear an explosion.  Jeff quickly checks the dash of the truck, everything is A-OK. I look in the mirror and our trailer tire has literally exploded and is sending trailer fender and tire shrapnel all over the freeway.  So we pull over on a flat spot and begin the process of installing the spare tire.  We had these tires balanced and inspected by Discount Tire!  F%#K! Now we have an exploded tire, a broken fender and two bent supporting trailer frame brackets!  After the new tire is installed we have to make a committee decision.  Do we continue on to Tucson or drive back to Yuma? Technically we have one more spare tire as the truck uses the same bolt pattern as the trailer; so IF we continue and get another flat we’d still be good.  The other option is to head back to Yuma and get a new spare.  The consensus is to continue on to Tucson.

Adventure #3:
No sooner as we all pile back in the truck and begin our journey to Tucson, we hear a “Bing Bing Bing” and the Truck’s check engine light comes on.   MOTHER F%#KER! We have no idea what’s going on with the engine, all we envision is being stranded in the middle of the Arizona desert in 104 degree heat.  We make the decision to head back to Yuma and get new tires and have the truck checked out.  Unfortunately it is Memorial Day and 6:00pm at night so neither Chevy nor Discount Tire is open.  I found an RV park nearby and we stay the night.  Discount Tire opens the following morning at 8:00am and Chevy opens at 7:00am so we drop the trailer off at Discount and take the truck over to Chevy.  Two hours and $600 later the trailer has four new tires and the truck has a $125 inspection report that reads bad O2 sensor.  The technician clears the fault and tries to get the truck to duplicate the error and nothing happens.  We get the thumbs up from Chevy that the O2 fault must have been an old code and we finally head east.

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Adventure #4:
The road through Arizona’s desert is beautiful.  We make it without any troubles into New Mexico where we come across a train wreck.  There are two injured people in the derailment. I have never seen a train derailment in person and there are rail cars everywhere.  It’s truly a sight to see. I’m just glad that nobody was killed.

Adventure #5:
Just before Las Cruces New Mexico, we stop at the rest stop and I cook a spaghetti dinner.  We are all sitting out on the park benches of the rest stop enjoying dinner.  We see off in the distance a huge volume of black storm clouds accompanied by flashes of lightening.  We turn and in the opposite direction is another bank of storm clouds.  We pull up the MyRadar app and all we see are these two storms in red converging on one another.  The sheer scale of red “severe” weather is alarming.  So we finish dinner and begin to head out just as drops of rain are starting to fall.  HOLY MOTHER OF GOD; THE WIND!! THE RAIN!! THE LIGHTNING!! THE HAIL!!!  I have NEVER in all my life actually seen a storm of this magnitude.  Cars are driving at a crawl or either pulled over to the side of the road with their hazard lights flashing.  Our truck’s windshield wipers cannot keep up with the deluge!  The hail hitting the windshield and the hood is so loud we have to shout to each other to hear.  I would have taken a video of the storm but my hand was “white knuckled” on the Oh Shit bar of the truck.  As the hail continues to pour down, Jeff shouts “I hope our bathroom skylight isn’t broken!” I’m thinking, I hope we don’t die! Thankfully we emerge from the worst part of the storm after 20 minutes of pure hell.  Now we’re just getting a steady rain with the occasional flash of lightning.  To say we were all “Scurd” is an understatement.  There was definite pucker factor going on big time!

Adventure #6:
As we leave the outskirts of Las Cruces, I lean over to look at the gas gauge; to me it’s reading pretty low.

I ask Jeff, “You want to stop for gas? Do we have enough?”
Jeff replies “Oh we’ve got plenty.”
Skeptically I say, “Really? You Sure?”
Jeff scowls “We Have Plenty”

Little do we know that the road to Dallas Texas is NOT flat.  We’re approaching uphill after uphill and I’m seeing that gas gauge inch closer and closer to E.  Finally it’s pretty clear that we are not going to make it to Van Horn Texas.  Unfortunately there are no diesel gas stations around that could fit our 33’ trailer and 20’ truck, so reluctantly Jeff pulls off the freeway and into an abandoned gas station.  Luckily we are carrying seven spare gallons of diesel. While Jeff is filling the tank I get out of the truck and stretch.  I look up at the trailer and see that the aluminum siding skin has peeled off the trailer at the front and runs about 6 feet back.  It looks like the peel of a banana except so much worse. I say to Jeff while pointing up, “That’s not good!”  Jeff looks over and his jaw just drops.  He states, “That isn’t good.”  So since our trailer ladder got ripped off in San Diego, we have no way to easily fix the trailer skin.  Jeff improvises the use of six used tires, stacks them up and uses them as a wobbly platform.  I’m trying to steady the tires as Jeff clambers up and attempts to fix the skin. And people wonder why women live longer.  So with seven gallons in the tank and the skin of the trailer tucked back in the seal, we make our way to Van Horn Texas.

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Adventure #7:
We find a really nice RV park and spend the night without any drama. Back on the road we go.  I use the app Trucker Path to find a diesel truck stop.  I step out of the truck and let Bogie take a pee.  While Jeff is fueling up I look at the trailer.  Once again we have banana peeling trailer skin in the same location.  Jeff’s temporary fix was indeed temporary.  So I walk over to Jeff and tell him the siding has come loose again.  While telling him this I see another part of the trailer skin that has separated.  I say to Jeff while pointing, “That’s not good.”  Jeff just says “SHIT!”  So we finish fueling and thankfully there are no wobbly tires around for Jeff to almost kill himself on, but there are these nice cement streetlight platforms that are not only high enough for Jeff to each the trailer top but are also steady!  So with power drill in hand and a couple of screws, Jeff once again clambers up and fixes the trailer.  Then with the remaining screws fixes the trailer on the other side.  Once repaired, back on the road we go!

Adventure #8:
Finally we make it to Grapevine Texas five minutes before the storage yard was about to close.  We unload our friend’s goods into her storage garage and away we go.  The plan is to stay the night in the driveway at our friends’ boyfriend’s house in Flower Mound. We pull into the driveway and set the trailer up for a much needed rest after a long day of driving.  The next day Jeff detached the truck from the trailer and we head to Home Depot to get supplies to make some serious trailer repairs.  Sealant – check, longer screws – Check! Back to the trailer!  So with a borrowed ladder the permanent repairs are made much more easily. That evening we make plans to visit with our friends in Fort Worth.  Along the way, Jeff spots one of the places he’s been dying to go for over three years!  It’s a truck stop called Buc-ees.  Buc-ees is HUGE!  There are 36 gas pumps!  There are even shopping carts for the store portion.  But this ain’t no normal convenience store!  HOLY HELL this is the mecha of all convenience stores.  Jeff’s face is showing a blend of pure joy on the verge of orgasmic to absolute amazement.  We’re walking around the store and Jeff finds a true gem.   It’s a t-shirt that reads “Got Beaver Nuggets?” On the back it reads “Be a lot cooler if you did”.  Jeff is in heaven.  So we get some snacks and a couple of shirts and away we go to meet our friends.  I must admit I really wish we had Buc-ees in San Diego, they really are amazing places.  From country nik nak decoration stuff to clothing to fudge and hot food, Buc-ees has it all.

Adventure #9:
Friday morning we are scheduled to head back west to San Diego.  As we’re leaving Flower Mound I’m checking the Doppler radar and all I see is a HUGE patch of red and yellow Doppler warnings all throughout Texas and New Mexico – This should be interesting.  While it did rain hard almost all the way to New Mexico it wasn’t nearly as bad as the first storm we had been through.  However it was strong enough to damage the trailer AGAIN!  This time the fiberglass siding under the 5th wheel hitch has come loose.  We pull into a Loves truck stop and Jeff climbs into the back of the truck with power drill and screws in hand and screws the fiberglass back into place.
I comment to Jeff, “I think this is a sign to retire the trailer”
Jeff says reluctantly, “I think you might be right”

 

Adventure #10:
We have driven through New Mexico and are in the high desert of Arizona approaching the mountains.  We took the scenic route and it truly is beautiful! The landscape goes from high desert scrub to majestic pines in just a matter of miles.  As we head through the mountains we get a text message from one of our San Diego friends: “Hey we are at the San Diego airport heading to Scottsdale!” We text back “Meet for lunch in Scottsdale?”  So a couple of hours later, the timing is just right and we meet our friends for a quick sandwich lunch.  What a small world!

Adventure #11:
As we leave Phoenix and are crossing the desert plains we hear that familiar, Bing Bing Bing, and again the check engine light comes on.  Jeff rolls his eyes and I heave a deep sigh. “PISS ANT MOTHER F$#KER!” This time we agree, we’re throwing caution to the wind and continuing through the desert ignoring what could be impending doom.  Thankfully that doom is a mere inconvenience in gas mileage.  We were getting around 14 MPG before the check engine light.  After the light it dropped to around 8 MPG.  Probably the O2 sensor again.  Our plan is to make it our river place in Yuma and have an actual bed to sleep on.  Surprisingly that plan comes flawlessly into place and we arrive at Hidden Shores without any further engine problems. So the next morning we leave Yuma and head back to Alpine where we store the trailer.  Thankfully the truck didn’t give us any further problems and thankfully the trailer didn’t decide to shed anymore skin along the way.

Even though our trip was funded by the National Lampoon Vacation fund, I can look back on it now and just shake my head in amazement of all we experienced.  Through all the adventures; the ladder, the tire, the engine, the trailer continually wanting to get naked, it still was a fun trip that I’d do all over again if a friend needed us to.  I think next time however, I might bump up my life insurance before I do…

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There are some birthdays throughout one’s life that are true milestones.  These birthdays can include:

13 (Earning that “Teen Badge” and some serious attitude that comes along with it)

16 (Earning the License to Drive, and a means to escape the house)

18 (Earning the ability to Vote!)

21 (Cheers to binge drinking and damaging the liver!)

40 (Here’s to being middle aged and officially at the top of the hill!)

Last year one of my friends said that she wanted to celebrate her upcoming 40th birthday by going somewhere special.  That special place was going to be Iceland.  She asked a couple friends if we wanted to come join her on this 40th birthday adventure.  So there we were, three girls planning a 9 day vacation to Iceland!

View of Iceland

View of Iceland

The trip was planned for middle October 2015, but we started planning our trip well in advance.  In April we booked our flights via WOW Airlines from Boston to Keflavik Iceland and by July 2015 I booked a two bedroom cottage in Sangerdi just outside of Keflavik.   Things were coming in to place and we were getting so excited as the days counted down.

Our Sangerdi Cottage

Our Sangerdi Cottage

Everything was coming into place.  We had booked some tours in advance but most of them we booked directly at the Iceland tourist center when we arrived.  I was coming in two days later as I had to work a trade show in Orlando.  Knowing that I was going to go from the 80 degree weather in Orlando to 32 degree weather in Iceland, I packed two separate suitcases.  One for Orlando and one for Iceland.  The Orlando bag I sent home with a co-worker.  As the day of departure for Iceland came, I had that familiar panic attack of “WHERE THE HELL IS MY PASSPORT?!  Oh yeah, here it is.  Right where it’s been for the last four days…” That happened a couple more times on the connecting flights over to Boston.

We flew WOW Airlines which is Iceland’s UBER economic airline.  WOW is so economical that they charge you for water!  The flight attendants are dressed in these vintage purple dresses with little flight attendant caps.  It’s all very charming even when they take your money for a glass of water.  But I prepared well and brought my trusty HydroFlask.  The flight going to Iceland is approximately 5 hours.  Really not so bad at all.  The best part is that leaving from Boston at 7:30pm means that as the plane passes over Greenland and heads towards Iceland you just might get to see the Arora Borealis.  Thankfully my window seat faced north and I was able to see the northern lights.  Unfortunately they weren’t the vivid bright green hues that you see in “I WAS HERE” postcards.  The lights I saw were a pale green that morphed to white.  It really is fascinating the way the lights dance and move about.  Truly mesmerizing.

It was completely dark when the plane landed in Iceland at 4:05AM.  The other two girls came to pick me up at the airport and we drove back to the cottage for me to get some sleep.  I arrived on a Tuesday and all that was planned for the day was to tour the main city of Reykjavik and visit the Penis Museum.   You read that right… The world famous Penis Museum in Iceland.  Dedicated to various exhibits of the Penis.  We arrived at the museum and you are surrounded by penises.  From the smallest penis of some kind of shrew to the largest penis of the blue whale, this museum has a specimen from hundreds of species.  Penises in jars, taxidermy penises, Penis telephones, Penis and testicle water vessels and even Penis bones!  It’s a giant world of the PENIS!

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On the Penis Phone

At the Penis Museum

At the Penis Museum with a giant elephant dick behind us.

What’s really nice about Iceland is that everyone speaks English.  I don’t mean this as the typical arrogant American who expects everyone in a foreign country to speak English.  But in Iceland they speak Icelandic.  Which in itself is a very difficult language and because it’s only spoken in Iceland, the residents do not expect to hear their native tongue spoken by foreigners.  Granted we did learn the familiar phrases like thanks (Tak) and hello (Hallo), but otherwise everyone spoke English.  Funny thing is that Icelandic people learn English from watching American and British television shows.

If there’s one thing we learned while on this travel adventure is if you want some keepsakes that aren’t the typical tourist trap crap, then go to the goodwill or what they call the RedCross in Iceland.  It’s a secondhand shop very similar to what we have in the US.  So instead of buying a brand new Icelandic scarf for over $100 I bought a secondhand Icelandic scarf for $13!  The same goes for if you wanted one of those Icelandic jumpers (Icelandic hand knit wool sweater).  They sell for over $120, but at the secondhand shop they were $30.  Not too shabby!  So hit the secondhand shop for souvenirs!

The other very very strange custom in Iceland is that parents who take their babies to dinner leave the children OUTSIDE the restaurant in their stroller.  YUP! You heard me right.  The babies are left outside the restaurant in their baby carriages.  Granted the kids are bundled up tight in these cute baby sleeping bags and then the stroller is covered by this clear plastic rain fly.  But it was very strange to see two to three strollers outside the restaurant with babies inside the stroller waiting for the parents to finish dinner.  Could an American parent in the USA ever do such a thing without someone calling the police over child abandonment?  NEVER!  What about someone stealing the baby you ask?  Well crime in Iceland is virtually non-existent; so parents do not worry about someone kidnapping their waiting child.  It was actually very refreshing to see such faith and trust in a society as a whole and I greatly admire Iceland for that virtue.

Iceland is renowned for its fresh fish hauls and its grass fed lamb.  I truly have never had such fresh tasting fish.  One evening I even ate the traditional meal of lambs head with turnip puree and cauliflower mash.  It wasn’t weird eating the head of a lamb, what was weird to me is that it was served cold!  The cheek meat was very good and I would eat it over again, just maybe warmed up a bit.

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Eating the traditional Lambs Head

On Wednesday we had booked a horseback riding tour for six hours.  On the tour you’d ride for three hours have a lunch then go back on the trail for another three hours.  The trail horses were Icelandic Horses which are the ONLY horses allowed in Iceland.  They are small, stocky horses that are very furry and have cute personalities.  They also have a gait called the tolt.  It’s fast walking trot pace that is VERY comfortable! You basically wiggle in the saddle and that’s it!  IF you can get your horse to do it.  There’s a fine line between the Tolt and the Trot, and I had a hard time finding that line.  I’d get my horse to do it for a while, then he’d increase speed to the trot, a not so comfortable pace.  But overall it was a blast.  It wasn’t the typical horse tour “Let’s go for a slow walk on a horse.” Nope this was “OK Ready? Let’s tolt!” or “Ok ready for the gallop?”  We were moving!  Thankfully all us girls were experienced horse riders so we felt comfortable with all the various paces thrown at us.  If I go back to Iceland, I’m not doing any other tour except the horseback riding.

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My Icelandic horse “Emma”

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Us girls on our ride

On Thursday we decided to visit the world famous Blue Lagoon Spa.  After our six hour horseback ride the previous day, our butts and thighs would need the heated relaxation.  The Blue Lagoon is the “waste water” from a geo thermal heating plant.  The spa is HUGE and the temperature of the lagoon ranges from tepid to scalding.  There is a natural current in the lagoon that moves the heated water around so you’d be standing in one place then get a touch of very hot water followed by tepid water.  And the color of the water is a very pale white/blue.  One you stick your hand in the water you don’t see it anymore.  The water is supposed to be very good for your skin and heal many acne problems.  There are even stations throughout the lagoon with silica-clay buckets that visitors rub on their skin and let dry.  It’s kind of funny to see half the people walking around the lagoon waters looking like a geisha with white face makeup.  Even the men slather on the clay which is a sight to see.  The only bad thing about the “healing waters” is that because of the extremely high mineral content the spa is extremely drying to hair.  It was recommended that you put conditioner in your hair and wrap it in a bun and don’t rinse it out until you exit the spa.  There were a couple of stands of hair I missed that got wet in the spa and they felt like straw when I exited the spa.  Even our bathing suit fabric had this weird rough texture as the material dried.  After three hours of soaking in the thermal pools we decided to call it quits.  We had booked a caving touring later in the afternoon and it was time to get moving.

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The Blue Lagoon Heated Geo Thermal Spa

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The Blue Lagoon



Iceland is the land of fire and ice and volcanoes alive and dormant are scattered throughout the country.  These volcanoes during and after eruption can create long running lava tubes and these tubes make for some subterranean fun!  So we put on our caving helmets and crawled underground.  Some of the tubes had partially collapsed, which made for some interesting traversing.  I’m glad I had been working on my core strength because there were some sections of the lava tube cave that we had to plank across or frog crawl.  Minerals throughout the tube created a diamond dust like effect in some sections of the tube.  It was hard to capture in a picture, but it looks like diamonds are embedded in the rocks.  Halfway through the cave tour the leader told us to have a seat on the rocks and turn off all our lights.  For several minutes we just listened to the cave sounds.  The soft sound of dripping water.  The whisper of a cold cave breeze.  It was amazing how tranquil it was just sitting there on the rocks in the dark.

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The Lava Tube

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Getting ready to go caving

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Standing next to the Troll Tooth

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Glittering ceiling of the lave tube

On Friday we decided to not do any tours but instead drive halfway around the country.  We were hoping to make it to town called Hofn, however after making a couple of detours to see some amazing waterfalls we decided to stop in a very small town called Vik.  The first hotel we stopped at didn’t have any rooms available.  Which we thought was strange because there was only ONE car in the parking lot.  But the concierge pointed out another hotel that might have rooms available.  So we check it out and indeed they have one three-bed room available!  We’ll take it!  Come to learn that room was the only room left at the hotel because busloads of teenagers were arriving in an hour.  All I heard was “Hundreds” and “Teens” and my eyes got all squinty.  “Great!”  I imagined hundreds of teens rampaging up and down the hallways of the hotel all night long.  In preparation for the “Teen Horde” we decided to visit the hotel restaurant early.  Ah this is nice… The three of us, sitting in the restaurant; soft gentle music playing, sipping our Icelandic wine. Then a moment of pure terror as the first bus load of teens arrive.  One after another stepping off the bus. Will it ever end?!  Then another bus arrives! Then another!  All the teens having arrived now are stampeding towards the front desk!  Thankfully we are halfway finished with dinner when the first group of teenagers arrive at the restaurant.  Heather and I have prepared our eye daggers in the event of teenage disorderly conduct.  We are expecting the usual unruly group of teens who are loud, obnoxious, rude and generally uncaring about anyone else except themselves.  Thankfully we are beyond surprised when these teens sit at their table quietly, get their meal from a prepared buffet and eat respectfully.  WOW! That wasn’t a bad experience at all! Not at all what I expected.  Perhaps the teens weren’t in our section of the hotel, but if they were we didn’t hear a peep from them all night long.  Who would have guessed you could get a good night sleep when the hotel guests are 90% teens.  AMAZING!

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Our vehicle passenger description to a tee!

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In the small town of Vik

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Standing next to a gianatic glacier

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On Saturday we decided to continue our drive towards Hofn however we made two detours.  One for a plane crash on the lava sands beach and to walk a two hour hike towards the Column waterfall.  The hike was amazing, the views spectacular.  There was a bitterly cold wind blowing on the hike so we donned our beard hats!  The hike had taken a little longer than expected so we decided to start our journey home to Sangerdi which was at least a five hour drive.  It’s interesting, in Iceland they believe in the “Unseen People” AKA Trolls and elves.  So if there are a grouping of rocks that looks like a troll or elf home, instead of destroying the rocks to make way for a road, they’ll build the road around the rocks.  There were several spots on our drive home of rocks with tufts of grass growing out of the tops that looked just like trolls just sitting on the rocks.

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It’s Beard Hat Time!


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We were scheduled to leave Iceland on Sunday afternoon.  So as soon as we arrived at our cottage, we started packing.  Packing seemed like it took forever.  But eventually everything was packed, and the cottage was cleaned.  The flight home was exceptionally long because of a severe headwind.  Instead of 5 hours, the headwind added an additional hour to the trip.  We were hoping to see icebergs as we flew over Greenland, but the skies below us were cloudy from the moment we took off till the moment we landed in Boston.  Since we were arriving late in Boston on Sunday we decided to stay one night in Boston fly home the next day.

Overall it was an amazing trip.  I’m so glad that I had the opportunity to go on this adventure and celebrate a birthday milestone with two close friends.  Would I go to Iceland again?  Hell yeah!  After all said and done it was actually a fairly inexpensive trip even though Iceland can be very pricey.  We three girls contributed to everything.  We shared the cost of the cottage, the food we cooked, the rental car, etc.  It made for a very affordable adventure.  Looking for an exciting vacation where you aren’t just being lazy?  Explore what Iceland has to offer. I assure you, you won’t be disappointed.

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This past weekend was supposed to be a quick mini vacation to our Arizona river place.  Jeff has been overworked for the past several weeks and really needed a break.  So he was really looking forward to several days of relaxation.  Unfortunately this mini vacation didn’t turn out as we had planned.

We decided to leave on Thursday evening after work and head towards Yuma Arizona.  I was driving with boat in tow across the desert at 12:00pm at night.  At the Gordon’s Wells exit I started to pass a semi-truck and just as I passed the semi-truck I notice sparks shooting out from our boat trailer’s right wheel well.  I woke Jeff up saying I think we have a problem.  I pulled off onto the shoulder and we assess the damage.

The front tire of the trailer had exploded and shrapnel from the front tire damaged the rear tire on our tandem axel boat trailer.  Thankfully the tire didn’t really damage the wheel well, however parts of the exploded tire wrapped around the axel and actually stopped the wheel from rotating.  The sparks that I saw was the rim dragging on the pavement at 65 MPG.  Funny thing is even though we lost two tires on the right side I didn’t feel anything amiss while driving.  The only reason I knew we had a problem was seeing the sparks of the rim. 

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We don’t carry two spare tires so we had no choice but to remove the front tire from the left side of the trailer and use it on the rear of the right side.  So our tandem axel trailer rode on only two tires on each side.  In order to keep the front axle from dragging on the ground, I drove at 40 MPH all the way to Yuma Arizona.  By the time we got to Yuma it was 2:00am.  We didn’t want to chance driving to our river place so we decided to stay in Yuma.  Unfortunately because we have Bogie with us and lots of tools and stuff in the back of the truck we didn’t feel comfortable staying at a hotel and leaving our stuff in the back.  So instead we located the nearest Discount Tire Company and spent the night sleeping in the truck in the Discount Tire Parking lot.  Between Bogie farting and Jeff was snoring, I decided to get out of the truck and sleep in the boat.  So I took a blanket and nestled on the floor between the driver and passenger seats.  It’s hard enough to sleep on the floor of a boat as it is, but add in the fact that its 96 degrees at 3:00 in the morning, just makes even harder to fall asleep.  Thankfully I did eventually fall asleep, that is until a trash truck woke me up around 4:00am.   

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We all woke up around 6:00am and had two hours to wait until Discount Tire Opened up.  At 7:30 am the Discount Tire employees started arriving at work.  Finally two hours later, we had four brand new trailer tires, one new rim, and a $400 credit card charge.

Unfortunately our bad luck didn’t end with the trailer… This river trip we decided to use our jeep instead of the truck to pull the boat in and out of the water.  Putting the boat into the water wasn’t a problem because Jeff didn’t need to leave the jeep for me to launch.  Unfortunately we found out that the jeep doesn’t have working parking brakes and as I drove the boat onto the trailer at the end of the day, the boat almost pulled the jeep down the boat ramp and into the water.  Jeff had leave the jeep in gear and then had to wedge a rock behind the tire in order to keep the jeep from rolling back into the water.  Then when we finally got the boat somewhat on the trailer the jeep refused to go into four wheel drive.  The boat ramp is dirt and the weight of the boat left the jeep spinning the tires and throwing dirt and rocks INTO the boat.  Eventually we pulled the boat out of the water but unfortunately the trailer was too deep in the water and the boat floated out of place and rested sideways on the left pileon.  Jeff didn’t want to attempt to fix it on the dirt ramp so we drive over to the paved ramp and attempt to fix the boat.  There’s a line at the boat ramp and we’re getting all kinds of strange looks as people gawk at our boat that’s sitting cockeyed on the trailer.  Thankfully after three attempts we get the boat back into its normal position on the trailer and strangely enough the jeep finally decides that now is a good time to go into four wheel drive and we slowly pull up the boat ramp.  We’re very lucky that we didn’t punch a hole in the boat by it resting on the pileon.  So in October we’ll be taking the Jeep home to San Diego to fix all the many issues it has.  Definitely not the relaxing weekend that we had intended but it was an adventure for sure!

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