Getting it done or, Six Saturdays and a Sunday

You’ve almost certainly heard retired people state, “I don’t know how I ever had time to work. I’m so busy now.” Debbie and I didn’t like a sense of helplessness we detected in the statement. We want to be purposeful and moderate in planning and using our time. Still, with six Saturdays a week we potentially have time for lots of projects.

We stayed, at times last Winter, two or more weeks each in several places. I found myself arranging projects on the truck or trailer each time. In Punta Gorda, FL, I played golf almost daily and installed new amateur radio through-glass antennas on the truck.

Melbourne, FL, was a great spot for golf two and three times a week. Melbourne also has a very nice hardware store, Eau Gallie Ace Hardware, with all the bits and pieces we wanted to wall-mount our catalytic gas heater and repair our small gas grill.

Spring and Summer 2008 found us traveling all about the U.S. and Canada without stopping anywhere more than a few days. The to-do list grew and grew. I enjoyed more swimming and tennis and we did a lot of sightseeing. But neither of us did any projects all summer.

We’ve been camped in the Shaver’s driveway four weeks today. We’ve hit our stride. I like the list of projects completed. We’ve removed the bed-board, organized the storage under the bed, and refinished the bed-board edges; replaced the pants-catcher lever handle with a flush latch on the bathroom door; rebuilt all four Airstream wheels and repaired brake wiring; sanded to the metal the trailer’s coupler and A-arms and refinished them; installed an amateur radio antenna on the trailer roof; added a new 12vdc distribution panel for amateur radio gear under the dinette; installed an amateur radio under the dinette with the controls on the table; and installed an amateur radio in the truck.

There may be a finite number of things we can find to do for our Airstream home. After all, it’s only 25 feet long by 8.5 feet wide outside and 184 square feet inside. We could replace the counter tops or the sofa cushions, or relamp all the light fixtures again, or who knows what else. Then, there’s also the truck with lots of contents in the bed to sort through, clean up and potentially eliminate or replace. It’s not that we’re desperate for something to do. We’ve needed, or really wanted, to accomplish the changes accomplished so far.

There are probably plenty more things to occupy us, even without the additional work of preparing for sale our 1979 Argosy Minuet 7.3. The Capetown to Cairo Caravan (previously scheduled for 2009) won’t occur so we don’t have a use for this lovely 24 feet long, twin bed, rear bath trailer. The Argosy is an Airstream Company product and is well made. This one is only seven feet wide and tows effortlessly. I’d love to keep it and use it for little trips. But we don’t have room for it so we’re going to clean it up and get it sold soon.

We’re adjusting to the notion of staying in one place for weeks at a time. Maintenance and upgrade projects aside, we’ll anticipate time for more golf, tennis, swimming, and learning. And we look forward to finding the right volunteer missions for our lifestyle. Our lifestyle has been so transient for the past ten months we couldn’t very well commit to any volunteer organization. A longer stay may make possible a worthwhile commitment of our time to community needs.

Six days a week is plenty of time to do all the projects and fun activities. One day a week, we’re enjoying visiting area Churches and hearing the wonderful variety of Methodist ministers in our travels throughout the country. But this is a topic for another talk. . .

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