September 14, 2014

Domain is Working & Ramblings

It looks like my blogging vacation lasted a couple of weeks. I wasn't off the internet and spent more time than I would have preferred online but I'll discuss that later in this post. I can't shut my mind off so I am always thinking about different decisions and solutions.

First of all, I am going to renew the domain name of this blog. I just checked it and it did work. So all should be operable at as well as Yesterday I took down the domain name and was just using my blogger address, so for those that tried to visit the blog and got the blank page saying your browser could not find the blog ... that was the reason for it.

This blog is almost three years old, I have close to or a little over 100,000 page views and regular readers that come back looking for either new information, see if I'm breathing, what the hounds are doing and what kind of travel plans I have, if any.

So, I decided to stay "open for business", renew my domain name and continue to blog. I have a lot of online friends here and that's always a good thing being a self proclaimed loner. I know being on the side of a "blog reader" it's always disappointing after following a blog to either have the author stop blogging and tells you or the blogger that quietly disappears and never comes back to their blog.

I didn't feel it was right to stop blogging, even about every day routine living as long as I had followers and I still had the urge to write. Which I have both.

While I didn't write about anything I did do some rearranging. As you could see I moved some things from the right sidebar to the left sidebar. I removed some blogs from my list only to make it shorter. I still follow the removed blogs on my Feedly account. I deleted photos of the hounds and my Toyota. I might put the photos of the hounds back on the sidebar. I'll probably continue to move things around and may add those blog links back to my sidebar even though the list was long.

During my absence I continued to read my list of RV blogs as well as other retirement blogs and found that I was not the only one questioning whether to continue blogging or what subjects to write about. Lloyd posted yesterday that he was finding little to write about since he has come off the road, doing the same hike everyday and now living in one spot. He had also gone through all of the social media options and is reverting back to just blogger as his writing platform.

Bob Lowry and his wife over at A Satisfying Retirement just returned home from a trip to the upper Midwest in a Class C and found that 43% of his expenses were going into the fuel tank. While Curtis over at Poor Mans RV Life has found out that after using a Class C, a Jeep Cherokee towing a trailer and a Van over the years, that his older diesel pusher, a Pace Arrow is the best rig he has traveled in, getting 10mpg and spending roughly $500 per month in fuel as he starts his fulltime RV lifestyle.

Both of those percentages and dollars are more than I had budgeted in my estimates. I also knew or expected I would spend more than I have budgeted for fuel, food, etc.

As I mentioned above, I've been spending more time than I have wanted on the internet. It's just the rut I've been in longer than I want to admit. I do a lot of online reading during the day from the blogs I follow, to sports news and forums, forums for the FJ Cruiser and Mini Cooper as well as computers. I trying to stay away from reading the news, still it is very easy to spend hours and hours reading before you realize just how much time you have spent ... which feels like wasted time to me.

That is not the way I want to spend everyday ... so today I am making changes.

It's beautiful outside AGAIN today, so I am definitely going to be spending some time outside with the hounds. The Mini Cooper needs washed and it's finally cool enough to do that. With the recent storms and high winds I will be getting on the roof since the temps have decreased and clear off some broken tree branches.

I admit I like this time of year in the "tropics" of southern Indiana. With the clear skies you can see a million stars at night and the low humidity you can do things outside and still breath. For some reason this summer, bugs and mosquitoes have not been a problem. At night I am smelling more and more camp fires in the air.

Al talked about his three hobbies he has had over the years and how they have came together in the way he travels and his daily photography. That got me thinking and asking myself what were my hobbies past and present. Some of them I have always had for as long as I remember while I found a few that I no longer did but had possible interest in starting again.

Back in the 80's I was into photography. I had all the different sized lenses, the different filters and the bags to carry the equipment in. I have photographs I took while traveling throughout the world and 99% of those photographs are on 35mm slides. At that time 35mm slides was the preferred option for taking photographs. I have some older photos from a small 110 camera that I took with me on my cross country bicycle trip and those can be scanned, I just need to take the time to do it.

So photography is something I might start doing again. I realized I have a lot of neat things to take photos of around here but like most everyone else ... we take those shots for granted since they are a part of our daily life and end up not taking pictures. Many of the photos I am seeing from bloggers this summer from Whidbey Island and surrounding areas, I don't have a lot of photos of but have ten years worth of them in my mind. I think I'd rather have the photos.

Sports have been a hobby of mine since my first breath. My dad was a high school basketball and baseball coach so our life was geared around sports 12 months a year. In the summers he would have two to three weeks off and unlike many of the current RV bloggers, we did NOT take camping trips .. we would travel but would stay in motels that had a pool. We also tried to tie those vacations to major league baseball games if possible. So, no matter what happens I doubt my love of watching sports will ever change.

Another hobby I like doing is riding either a road bicycle or my mountain bike, even if its only for a few miles. When I do travel I will take the mountain bike with me and leave the road bikes at home.

Like Al, I have always enjoyed driving ... yes driving.  I cannot count the number of times I have made trips from California to Indiana and back or Washington to Indiana and back but every time I loved driving cross country. Yet on all of those trips I either didn't have time or didn't take time to stop and look at the beautiful country I was traveling through. At times I did take the older highways but only stopped for food, gas and an occasional nap.

From the list of hobbies I wrote down just out of curiosity, I found that I could do most if not all of them traveling.

That leads me to the subject of traveling.

At this time I cannot make that commitment. Basically after more thinking the past two weeks and even coming close to purchasing a trailer I have decided not at this time. I also enjoy this time of the year in Indiana. Also the hounds ... every time I think about them traveling, I think of their comfortable life here. Winston is getting older, hind legs are getting weaker, and when I look into his old eyes as I pet him ... I hear the words "stay here". Heidi is getting treatments for her skin issues which have not changed even with cooler temps and even keeping her off grass for two weeks ... they got worse. Sadie is just Sadie ... big and needs room when inside.

After a few recent tests traveling with the hounds there are still issues that I wrote about here last September. They do better in the FJ than in the H3 Hummer I had. It's a little bit smaller inside so less room for stuff and us. I just feel the best time for me to do any traveling is when I am down to one hound, not three. It doesn't matter how much I want to travel in a small trailer towed by my FJ 4x4, I know that is not enough room for me and the hounds.

Of course you never know what lays ahead in life, what could change to take away that chance to travel but I am willing to live with my decision and I'll have no regrets if something happens to prevent me from traveling. I have traveled a lot and seen a lot of places recorded in photos in the past just not in an RV, so if something happens before I can travel it's ok.

I will still take short trips with the hounds but I cannot say that I'll make the commitment to travel for the reasons explained above.

Today I am making some subtle changes to my daily routine to enjoy what's outside around me and also to get out of my recent rut. I know I am early into my retirement phase but I think I need some sort of structure instead of floating aimlessly through my days. I'm not talking major changes, just things that will put me back into some sort of routine, without spending all my time in front of a computer monitor.

My traveling plans may change when the temperature get to the point that I hate being here and that might be enough to shove me out the door, hounds and all.

Even with little to no travel at this time, I will continue to blog about retirement living and if anything changes in the travel plans.

No comments:

Post a Comment