Wednesday, April 17, 2019

I Didn't Want to Interrupt the Riverboat Trip - So Here's Some Old/New News!

The Prides have moved... again.

The shortish-longish story is that on the day before the Prides were planning on leaving the California house for their FL home, they stopped into an open house for a house just down the street from their current home. Just because we could!

The blue point is the home the Prides own. The home the Prides bought just a tad bit over a year ago. The red flag is the house going on the market. It's about 125 feet from one house to the other, perhaps less.

We spent about fifteen minutes in the house. We were not impressed. Yeah, the house was OK, but.... on our brief stroll back to our house we chatted about the negatives.

The next morning we finished loading the truck, turned off lights, turned down the heat, locked the doors and headed out to to the storage yard and hooked up the Airstream for our long trek back to our  "real" home in Florida.

We didn't talk much on that first day of driving.  I guess we were tired. Or, maybe we were enjoying the scenery.

The second day we drove through Nevada. There is a lot of nothing in Nevada. We had a lot of time to talk. 

This is the view as we came down from the hills in Nevada toward the Great Salt Lake. We were talking about what we liked about our house, and what we didn't like about the house down the street:

We really like the floors in our house. 
We didn't like the kitchen in the house for sale.
We like that the door to our patio is on the main floor.
We didn't like the powder room in the house for sale.
We like the built-in office and loft area upstairs in our house.
and so on,
and so forth.

That night we stopped at a small RV park behind a hotel just south of the Great Salt Lake, about 20 miles from Salt Lake City. 

Day is done, gone the sun!

The next day we drove through Utah. 
We talked about what we liked about the house down the street:

The views from just about every window on the south and west sides were AMAZING!
There was an actual driveway where one could park a car, or two!
There was no house on the west, and you could see through the bars of the fence and appreciate the view.

The next day we drove through Wyoming. We called the realtor we had used when we bought our house. We asked if he could check out the house down the street and tell us what he thought about it.

Then, we arrived in Golden, CO. The view from the hill above the campground was awesome. The weather was spectacular. We enjoyed two days... a bit of a break from driving,

and, we ran into Lori, or rather, she ran into us. As we were setting up camp she walked by and looked at me and called my name.. with a question mark after it. (As in... is it really you?!) Lori and her husband have a site in the same resort where we live in Florida. She and her husband travel around the country for his job, and had been living in the Denver area for several months. 

While in the Denver area we talked with the our realtor. He said the house seemed to be priced right, and looked like a good deal to him....


we put an offer in, our offer was accepted, and we bought the house.

OK, it wasn't quite that easy. There were a few rough patches, but we worked over, around and through them. 

We returned to California on December 16, and in the morning we began carting things from one house to the other.

We loaded bags, boxes and bins and toted them in a wagon or in/on my MINI.


after trip, 

after trip!

For three days... and three nights
we packed, carted and unpacked stuff.
And... we had downsized on our first move to California.
Good Lord! 
What would it have been like if we hadn't done the first "paring" of stuff?!

My legs had shin splits where I didn't have shins! 
I mentioned this to the realtor who was going to sell our first CA home...
she commented that I was being pretty stupid!
After all, I had the choice of two jetted tubs, she pointed out. One in our first home,
one in our second. She prescribed a glass of wine and 30 minutes in the jetted tub.
OMG - she was right. I felt oh, so much better!

On the fourth day, movers came to cart the heavy stuff. 
They also took numerous trips with furniture dollies, from one house to the other.
It would have been more work to try to load it all into a truck!
So, we Dreamers supervised, pointing this goes there, 
that goes here, until it was all set to rights.
Three days later we had our kids over for our first Christmas in the new, new home!
(Nope... I didn't take pictures!)

But these pictures may show you just one of the compelling reasons why we decided to move just 125 feet from one home to another:

Morning mist... looking south:

... and the view looking west, toward the Miller/Knox Regional Park:

Evening looking west... 
(the same view as the picture above... without the fog)

...and a clear morning looking south.
Yes, that is San Francisco!

And a panoramic of our evening view...

OK... now that I've written this, I am itching to get back to Point Richmond and our new, new home!

Oh, and the other home? 
Although we dearly loved the realtor we used to buy both CA homes, we selected a realtor who lives in the neighborhood to help us sell the first home. It was provident! Before we could get it on the market, she happened upon a young couple walking on the sidewalk one morning. They mentioned that they were going to put an offer in on a house down the street from our house. She asked if they would like to see our house; it was the same floor plan as the one they were considering, but in a slightly better location and the yard was in better shape. They loved our home. We matched the price of the other home on the market, and our first house was sold!

Saturday, April 13, 2019

Bucharest - the Final Day

Our trip came to an end in Bucharest. We had two nights in town. In addition to touring Ceausescu's home, we had a brief bus tour of the city, learning some the history. We enjoyed a few strolls through the area near our hotel. Then... it was time to pack the bags and head to the airport for the long trip home.

I adored this sign!

It seemed there was quite a bit of juxtaposition of old and new.

This is the life! 
Stretch out at an outdoor cafe, under an awning. 
Food and shelter... and companionship if you want it!

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

A Visit to Ceausescu's Palace in Bucharest

From the unprepossessing exterior of the "Spring Palace" one would have no idea of the opulence and grandeur to be found inside. This was home for Romanian Dictator Nicolae Ceausescu and his family form 1965 until the execution of Nicolae and his wife, Elena, in 1989. 

Once inside the residence, the furnishings are astounding. 

From what we learned on the tour this was a case of having everything, but in some ways, having nothing. The three Ceausescu's children lived an isolated life. They could not bring friends over to the house, as no one was to know the high manner in which they lived. How sad for them. 
Personally, I became agitated by seeing the opulence, knowing that so many people went without. 
Nicolae and Elena were executed by a firing squad on Christmas Day after a brief "trial". 

Tuesday, April 9, 2019

Last Day on Board

Oh, wow, it's been a long time since I posted... life got busy! 
So, we had one more day on board the Beatrice, and I wanted to share a few pictures of life on board. 

It is all about 



and Friends!

Our "cocktail crowd"
Ranee, Kathy, Jim, Shirley, Scott, Marc and Earl
Sadly, Earl passed away after a major heart attack a month after the cruise.

This was one of my favorite evening entertainers


Seeing the bags lined up is always sad.

But wait...
There's more!

We are on to Prague for a few days before heading home. 

What is Four?

Have you ever thought of the meaning of "four"?  Four is the number of: seasons in a year. corners and sides to a square. virtues....