Hello, and... Whooops!
So I must apologize to anyone who has sent email, or commented recently, or written brilliant posts at their own blogs which I haven't stopped by yet to read. I may have mentioned that I was setting out on a cross-country trip, but I didn't anticipate that the first four nights we'd end up with no internet coverage at all in any of the campgrounds we stayed in . That's almost five whole days without going online!
As you might imagine, five days offline is an eternity to a
One the positive side: the obsessive voice in my head that evaluates every daily experience or observation, no matter how trivial, for potential blogworthiness? It's a bit quieter! That's probably a good thing.
But dang, I miss everyone. This is sort of a "wish you were here" postcard.
OK, so maybe I don't wish all of you were physically here inside Fran the Van. That might get a bit crowded. Let's just say "here" in a broader, more metaphorical sense.
So regulars might notice this is another weird post--just a bunch of random thoughts--but fear not. The "normal" crab will be back sometime Thanksgiving-ish, and might even have written a coherent post health and fitness post by then.
Weddings and Elections
So my last post was written just after getting gay-married and right before election day. Many thanks to all the wonderful folks who commented and had such supportive, kind, encouraging things to say! It really meant a lot to us. It was hard, however, amid the general post election euphoria (hooray for Obama!), to see Prop 8 and all the other anti-gay ballot initiatives win. Damn it. That hurt.
Road Trip Wonderfulness
Sad as we were to leave P-town for the winter, we're having a great time on our journey west to California. Not every mile has been stunning but a LOT of it has been gorgeous as we've been getting off the interstates a bit and traveling some two lane highways. Beautiful fall colors (Merritt Parkway, OMG!); rustic farms and spunky small towns and, of course, hideous strip malls and coastal high rises. We've been enjoying breathless NPR reports on the new Obama administration and the world's excitement; and sampling regional cuisine. (Note: vinegary barbecue, not our fave! Who knew there were so many variations?). We've been enjoying nearly empty campgrounds and long hikes and gas stations with prices like $1.99 a gallon. And we get to have the cat with us, who entertains us and cuddles with us and is an excellent traveling companion--even if she does still scoot every now and then. (Tip: "Unbelievable" really is an unbelievable stain remover).
The Long and Whiny Road
Of course I can always find a few things to grouse about. I'll limit myself to jut two:
Faked Out at The Food Court
FYI: If you are ever looking for a quick fast-food lunch and have rationalized to yourself that a piece of Kentucky Fried Chicken with the skin pulled off, and maybe some baked beans and coleslaw wouldn't be too unhealthy a choice...
Do NOT be fooled into stopping at service area advertising a "KFC Express."
What's a KFC Express? Well, the one we stopped at was basically a burger place that had two or three items from the KFC menu: Fried chicken "strips" and potato wedges and macaroni and cheese.
You couldn't even get a piece of actual chicken at a Kentucky Fried Chicken! As far as I can tell, a "chicken strip" is just another word for a "greasy fried batter delivery system."
We were so annoyed we decided to take the high road and so we avoided the burger joint/fake KFC entirely. Instead we opted for a lame chicken Caesar salad from another food court vendor. Then we were forced to eat 5,000 calories worth of trail mix and whole wheat cookies to compensate. Curse you, fake KFC!
Time Warp Gyms
When we're on the road, we tend to visit local gyms along the way and go in on a day pass. It's often an adventure, as no two places are ever exactly the same, and I am incredibly fussy and opinionated about gym equipment.
Our first stop was a gym that was the Cutting Edge of fitness... about 30 years ago. The building was bright and clean and the people were very friendly and helpful. Overall, it was great as they had my favorite eliptical, the armless PreCor. But when it came time for weights... the place was stuffed full of the old first generation Nautilus machines. Remember those?
The old Nautilus machines (which by now are beat to shit and jerky and sticky) were annoying even when they came out. You can't reach the pins to adjust the weights without getting up and walking around to the back of the machine. So if you ever wondered where all those Nautilus machines ended up? They're still out there--at a gym in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware.
Back on the road...
The adventure continues! Hope there's more internet along the way, but if it remains scarce, I'll look forward to catching up with everyone when I get to California.
And a big thanks to Merry and the Great Guest Posters for keeping the blog going while the Lobster and I meander our way back west!