This is the place to follow Eli and I on our adventure as we prepare to-and finally embark on-our Westbound trajectory. Right now it is Thursday night and we are home after a five day trip to see family and friends in New York and Vermont.
At 1pm today we got to Dover to pick up Eli's truck from the shop. I drove across the street to the car wash and got the van the Deluxe wash. We emptied the van of all its contents and vaccuumed it. Then I drove the van to Raymond, NH to drop off the van and sign over the title to Roland. Roland and I drove around a bit to try and recreate a problem that started up on the drive from Dover to Raymond. It was just after 5 when Eli and I drove away in her truck. We went to Portsmouth Brewery to meet our friend Emily for dinner. Inside the door we ran into Eli's 91 year old friend Masy and we invited her to eat with us. I got fish and chips. Eli ordered the veggie sandwich. Masy had the Korean BBQ Taco special. Emily just had a few fries and a beer.
On December 31 we drove to Lowell to celebrate the coming of the New Year with our friends at the 119 gallery. I performed with the group I've played in this year called Grau Garten. WE also backed up Crank Sturgeon who counted us in to the new year. There was late night sonic celebration and we were finally under our sleeping bags at quarter after three. The next day we loaded up and said farewells. It was January 1st and warm enough to stand in the sun in just a shirt.
Back on the road and headed for New Paltz to see Eli's brother Eric, friend Stephanie, and nephews Tristan and Liam. 24 hours wasn't nearly enough time to have with those guys. We made the most of it the next morning, running around the yard playing tag, hot potato pine cone, football toss, hide and seek and my favorite, garden laps.
By 2 we were on northbound I87 to Schenectady. We had dinner and spent the night with Virginia and Fred Thompson, Eli's parents. Breakfast the next morning and a terribly cold walk through the winding roads of Niskayuna, New York.
We received word that our friend in Portland had met with the landlord of a house we were interested in moving into. The house sounded nice if a bit small and close to the interstate, so our friend faxed us rental applications. Now we were faced with the task of tracking down the information we needed to fill out the forms. We were only partially successful. The rest of the forms would have to be finished later. In the mid afternoon we headed to Perecca's for the awesome mozzarella sandwiches on our way to Anita and David's house in Scotia.
David cooked us dinner and we spent some time. Part of the evening we would spend completing our rental application for a 2 bedroom house on North Montana in Portland. Late night. Next morning we had breakfast with Eli's folks at my folk's house in Scotia. Then came the goodbyes.
Three hours later we were driving on 107 in Vermont, still reduced to one lane. It had just been reopened three days prior. Hurricane Irene tore up that part of the state. We saw large banks of earth removed from the river basin, foundations that had lost their houses, houses that had appeared to have been lifted and then dropped in place. An hour later we were at our friend's house way atop a hill overlooking Barre. I've known Greg since I lived in Arcata in 1992. We went to Colorado together that summer and then were roommates and band mates in the years to follow. I conducted the marriage between him and Sue in their back yard back when they lived at their first house in Randolph. Now they have two kids we really like, Cooper and Scarlet. We got up this morning at 6:45 while everyone was getting ready to head out to school and jobs. We watched the outside go from black to dark shades of blue giving way to other colors as daylight returned.The temperature outside had risen from zero to 20 degrees and there was a soft snow that descended slowly as if each flake had its own parachute.
We left the Davis' house headed for Waterbury to see Helen one more time. We had a cup of coffee together and talked for about 45 minutes. An Amtrak came and left. Then we had to say goodbye again and get back in the van. The roads were a bit of a mess with fallen snow and the sand/salt mixture spread to fight off the ice. The van was turning a solid hue of gray with all the road schmutz being tossed into the air from car tires. We drove South on Highway 89.
Our rental applications were accepted and we were offered the house. But should we wait and see what else we find?