Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Camp Fire

There are  things that ease my mind and let me relax: Being outdoors, isolated water falls, beautiful streams and camp fires.

Campfire 002

The weather is conducive to being outside, so Sherry was outside doing her Bible reading. (Taken from my computer seat here inside)

We are fortunate here because when we are at our home base or some parks we do not get to have a fire. Fortunately here the risk of wild fire is low this season so we can have one.

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While in Las Vegas cousin Howard Dewey gave us a stack of RV related magazines, now months later we have time to sit and go thru them. The stack is on the table.

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The above shot is a practice shot with a delayed timed shot on our old camera.

Campfire 008

Sherry prepared our favorite Campfire snack, Hot Chocolate and pop corn. Now this is the life.  This is one of the reasons we are on-the-road, not a care, open air and good company.

Speaking of good company the neighbor walked over. Explaining he is a farmer from Indiana here to see his Grand daughter graduate from Basic training at Fort Jackson then trans port her to the next duty station at Ft. Lee Virginia.

He was quite the talker. Farms 1250 acres in Indiana but lives about fifty yards inside Ohio. I mentioned silo’s because I was surprised at the type of Silo my friend Kenneth Conrad had in Missouri. Being from NC the only Silo I had ever seen was standing tall, white and round.  Smile

He explained how they mixed corn, alfalfa and molasses.  That brought up Paula and John. Paula was the first I ever heard mention using molasses as cattle feed, I always thought that was HUMAN (boy’s food! Winking smile).  Lucy disagrees with that a bunch!

Anyway we passed a pleasant evening with a visit and a great campfire. Life is indeed good.

Thanks for coming to Fort Jackson with us.

Nite Shipslog


We are expecting the base chaplain over tonight to talk about RV life. We met on the internet and am looking forward to seeing him. The only other Chaplain I have met in a friendly, visiting way is Mixon, Ora’s hubby. He and She are very nice and pleasant folk.


j n S dune buggy2

Fun vehicles, I forgot about Shirl’s dune buggy!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

A beautiful day!

Relaxing in the motor home and nothing pushing us to be done. Last evening we enjoyed a rare treat, dinner at the ‘Lizard Thicket’ with Flavous and Virginia.

The menu is on the wall (yes they do have a menu at the table also).

Flavous and Virginia 001

I had Chicken, collards, okra/tomatoes & rice and gravy.  It was very good.

Flavous and Virginia 003

Sherry always comments that Virginia hasn’t changed a lot since 1958, and she hasn’t.  Both of these guys meant a lot to us at that time.  It was a pleasant trip down memory lane.  We all have grown children now, back then they were in diapers.  It does you good to ‘think’ how things were.  Their lives have had more twists and turns than ours.

‘nother subject…  pleasant secret uncovered.

Oh, when looking at my camera I ‘found’ 24 pictures in internal memory (I never intentionally use int. mem), always a card. but evidently Once I forgot.

They were from back in July when the family was back in Utah.

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Jennifer, Stephen and Ben.

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Jack, Josh and Megan.(Josh & Megan who now are married)

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Stella and Reece.

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Good picture of Ben (Who lives in Utah) and our waitress.

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Stella and Elsie Mae, the two Great Granddaughters.

Picture below was not on internal memory, but Sherry just pointed out that this is our entire family minus Corey who could not be with us that day. Our last day in Utah.  I give credit to Carol, who also lives in Utah for suggesting and taking the picture.


We have had some bad news from Utah. Carol’s house caught on fire a couple days ago and burned the Garage area. Her cars (One, her Corvette, her pride and joy) were inside. She and Corey are staying in a motel at present.

If you have ever experience even a small home fire, you know how devastating it can be.

Thanks for taking a trip with us.

Nite Shipslog


We will have a campfire in a bit. I love the smell of the burning wood.


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Jim and Shirl’s Isetta, Oh that is Jim when he was a young guy.  The car was still in the family at his passing. In our early lives we were gone a lot. This is one of the pictures Shirl sent to keep us up to date.

Remember Burt Reynolds posing nude in Cosmopolitan? Shirl also sent that to Sherry while we were in GITMO!

burtnude 1

She always liked to keep us up todate.

PS: Sherry liked the Isetta best!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Weston Lake, Fort Jackson, SC

We didn’t travel far, but at least we were on the road. We accomplished a whole lot while at our home port, but it was time to leave. It is that wander-lust methinks.

Our destination was Weston Lake, and we are here.

WEston Lake 001

South Carolina is known for tall pines and this camp ground is nestled in amongst some of the finest.  A Beautiful drive in.

WEston Lake 002

Yeah that is the road ahead, covered with pine needles.

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We have fished in this lake, but never had any luck, but it is a beautiful place.

WEston Lake 006

Since we were here last they have paved some sites and now have 50 Amp hookups.  It is very nice but we will only be here for three days.

This afternoon we will meet with Flavous & Virginia, friends from the USAF in 1958-1959. We were all young with small children, away from home. We attended the same church  and became like family.

Flavious and I were Radio operators. He was an instructor and I was on the Base Crash boats.

We will meet with one of the Base Chaplains tomorrow.  He wants to talk about life on the road in an RV. I have never met Chaplain Williams but like many friends we have, we met on the internet. We are looking forward to that meet also.

I guess it is me, but I feel at home hearing automatic weapons fire (IN THE DISTANCE). Fort Jackson is a training base.

Most of all we can have a camp fire and enjoy the solitude of the woods. We stayed at our last stop for a couple months, WOW, that is hard to believe.

Another note about the wedding. Lots of good things were said to the newly weds, but most of all there was a message (that I wish I could have heard) from one twin (Stephen) to his brother Joshua (the other twin).  Then Stephen stepped forward and they hugged so very tightly, (I thought about Darla and her expressed feelings about her twin)  There is something special there.

Now, we will enjoy the day, it is only 100 miles south of where we were, but it is 82 degrees, sun shining and a WONDERFUL DAY.

Thanks for catching up with us here in South Carolina.

Nite Shipslog


LIFE IS GOOD, especially on the road (for us).


Road to FL thanksgiving 001

I get such a kick out of seeing a classic on the interstate keeping pace with the crowd. I believe this was a 1948 Ford Coupe. (I didn’t care for the color, but that is immaterial.)

Monday, October 28, 2013



The Kiss, they are now officially married.


Presenting Mr. & Mrs Joshua Adam Darnell.


And the walk away, That is Joshua and Megan Darnell now. Methinks Josh is happy. Ok, I think Megan is also.  They are a good couple. I believe this is a good  marriage.

I wrote a book once called, “Why Not Forever?” The sweetest thing I heard after the wedding was: “Grandpa, we read your book!”

Honestly, weddings are wonderful. If you can afford a large wedding with the trappings that is wonderful. Megan’s uncle is a great guy and a professional photographer. He was snapping pictures like crazy, and he was so loveable. Great comments as he was walking taking the pictures. A great conversationalist.

Weddings also last a long time now. Too long for this old guy.  It was fun, of course it would have been more fun if I could have understood what was said.  We had to leave after the dancing started and before the opening of the presents.


(I thought it was so sweet, the quote, “I have found the one whom my Soul Loves”)

Oh the dancing was fun (no not Sherry and I we don’t dance) our great grand daughter Stella did do some dancing.


We had a good time, when we did decide to leave Stella said, “More dance more dance”


We made it home. It has been years since I saw Charlotte at night, the new sky scrappers with lights are impressive. We went under the airport flight paths and Stella loved the airplanes coming in and leaving.

Of course big marriages and celebrations are for kids. I think everyone had fun and enjoyed the festivities. Megan’s family is wonderful folk. Everyone we met seemed very personable.

So that is it. We can now leave day after tomorrow and head south. I think I have done every thing I had on my list.

Thanks for visiting with us here at the Shipslog.

Nite Shipslog


Wishing Megan, a beautiful and sweet lady, and Joshua a kind gentle man, the most wonderful life together. I believe this is one for the books. I feel this one can and will last.



A sweet ‘55 Chevy convertible we saw in Maine this year.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Sometimes it is simply a lack of communications….

Subject: Most helpful Mother in law

The mother-in-law arrives home from shopping to find her son-in-law boiling angry and hurriedly packing his suitcase. "What happened ?" she asks anxiously. 
"What happened!! I'll tell you what happened. I sent an e-mail to my wife telling her I was coming home today from my fishing trip. I get home and guess what I found?
Yes, your daughter, my Jean, with a naked guy in our marital bed! This is unforgivable, the end of our marriage. I'm done. I'm leaving forever!" 
"Calm down, calm down!" says his mother-in-law. "There is something very odd going on here. Jean would never do such a thing! There must be a simple explanation. 
I'll go speak to her immediately and find out what happened." 
Moments later, the mother-in-law comes back with a big smile. "I told you there must be a simple explanation: she didn't get your e-mail!"

(An understanding mother in law can be so helpful) (Thanks Buddy!)

A  couple posts back I mentioned we transported my mama back & forth between Our house and Jim & Shirl’s.  We did not just stack her on the back it was comfortable set us with a lounge chair and covers. I rode in back with her. Mama got a kick out of the trip and we did joke a lot about the Beverly Hillbillies.

photo 2aphoto 3aphoto 4a

Change subject. We are now heading out to the wedding we have been waiting for. Josh our grandson,  has found the wonderful lady. She is a nurse and they have fallen deeply in love. She is a beauty and a sweetheart.

Over 30 years ago I was doing a week’s presentation on Long  Island, NY. The kids were mostly Haitian and Jamaican. We had a wonderful time. During that time My BIL introduced me to Phoenix Suits.  I had NEVER owned an expensive suit. $50 was my limit. So off to the Phoenix Factory. They had seconds for $50. I bought 3. I am not a suit person but in my job sometimes they were required. The Phoenix in 1984-85 sold for $560-$900.(Today’s money that would be much over a $1000)

So I got out my suit for today. One sleeve had mold on it. It has been hanging over 3 years. A damp cloth took the mold off. The pants had NO hangar crease from the long time on the hanger. So I must say there is something to the fabric used in the expensive suit, but I would NEVER pay $500 for a suit.

It also FITS (well a little tight, but I have it on.)

Thanks for coming this way.

Nite Shipslog


Weddings are not high on my priority list due to the hearing problem. But a Navy Chaplain is going to perform the ceremony. I want to go ans see if he orders them to stay together.


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Some early vehicles must be seen to believe:

Above is the Ricottis Torpedo, Below is the 1920 Rumpler….56565657 1920 Rumpler w 6

Saturday, October 26, 2013

Are we getting meaner?

As far back as I can remember kids have harassed kids. Kids with glasses were called addressed, ‘Hey four eyes’.  Or "’Fatty, Fatty 2 by 4 can’t get thru the bathroom door!’ Then there was the “Red on the head !” These were some of the mean ones.

Then there were the friendly adorable ones: There were times a boy or girls handicap or physic earned them a nick name, ‘Crip Goodson’, Shorty Robinson, Fat Myers’ and then there was, ‘Sky scraper how is the weather up there?’  One boy on the Imperial was nicknamed ‘Dummy’. These were considered ‘adoring nick names’. As a matter of fact Shorty and Fat were leaders in the community and were addressed respectfully by those names publically.

A dear friend ‘Red Eye’ Keye, who was ‘hair lipped’ and had a distinct reddish  eye was loved by all.

But today, I read of kids who commit suicide because they are bullied, in a mean fashion to the point of despair. I hurt when I read this. A young life snuffed out because of a mean spirit.

It is uncool for a parent to get involved, but now it seems it will be necessary in some cases.  I know I was bullied at times, but I never bullied anyone.  I was always a live and let live type of student. I seemed to drift to the ones who were bullied, or the unpopular guys.

Population increase along with a media that can spread a story in seconds makes it appear bigger than what it is, but it is still bad.

I get frustrated at a government that would fine a person for leaving their  keys in their car, They hint I an abetting a criminal. It isn’t his car, he knows it.  Oh, I am old fashioned. I have enough sense to know the reason behind the law, I am just frustrated that I MUST take the keys out of my car, because if must might be stolen.

You read and hear of so many crooks in this country that you start seeing one behind every tree. That is NOT NECESSARILY TRUE of our citizenry, there are many good, honest, hard working folk in this world, I have met many.

But we are seeing too many SERIOUS crimes by the younger generations.  Some of us used to do things that we thought were bad, they are sort of a joke now. None of my friends wanted to KILL anyone.

Okay, another rant is over, thanks for coming by the LOG.

Nite Shipslog


Sometimes I forget the wonderful folk in this country because the news publishes and glorifies the bad dudes and dudesses. (my word)


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Looking for a car? Try this cute ‘48 Chevy Fleetline..

1948 chevrolet

Sherry’s favorite older car…

Friday, October 25, 2013

Starting to GET READY

I have washed the Motor home.  and waxed the front.  I will also put a wax on the roof to try and prevent the white streaking from water run off.(that might just wait)

I have refinished  our name plate:

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Many folk remember us because of the Ships wheel.  The first one I had, was bought in Vermont at a thrift store. It was actually a ships wheel wine rack, so I actually got two ships wheels for the price of one.  Those did not last long because they were not really ships wheels, this one is a real ships wheel. Since U.S. Navy is on our front tag, it fits. 

I read about you  guys  changing your summer clothes for winter clothes in the closet, we have never done that, we did not have that many clothes. hahaha. Especially true in the motor home, we each have one or two things for cooler weather, most of our clothes fit our life style. In  the spring we leave the south and follow Spring north. In the Fall we retreat south as the temps drop.

Neither of us require a lot of clothes, Shucks my dress shoes are out of style and old (25yrs). My life is dungarees  and T-shirts. I have Sunday-go-to-meeting khaki and a long sleeve shirt of two. I tried to wear shorts when we first retired, but I am just not a ‘shorts’ kind of guy.  Shorts would make the laundry less work, but………

I would change the oil now, but this monster takes 16-20 quarts. Where most dip sticks show a quart low mark, this one shows a 4qt low mark.

I still need to fix the John Deere, start the Yanmar tractor and move it to add water and air to the tires. I imagine Bill up in the north woods uses pure anti freeze in his tractor tires. I need to roof a shed.

Amazing how, even with all the work, I still have a lot of work to squeeze in, in the next few days.

Thanks for stopping by.

Nite Shipslog


Time waits on NO ONE, and some of this stuff might have to wait ‘til another time!



1960s Mustang Shirl

Shirl’s mustang, musta been a 65 1/2 convertible.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

USS Forest Fire

If you were in the USN during it’s life time you  would recognize that as the nick name awarded the USS Forrestal the huge aircraft carrier built in 1954 and served the USN until 1993.

                (Haze Gray and underway, CVA59)

A long and honorable tour of duty. Due to an electrical malfunction, there was a huge explosion on the flight deck, causing a fire that threatened to destroy the entire ship. But due to the dedication of fire crews and damage control crews steady hands the ship was saved.

But Salvation came with a price, the deaths of 134 and injuries to 300 of her shipmates.  A fire on a ship is a scary thing.  I was on the Independence during one fire and I had the watch.  A very scary thing to be in the bowls of a ship filled with smoke. My job was to ensure the men in my area were out of danger.

Funny how men think. In one compartment men were still trying to watch TV. I still remember the movie they were watching, “Desert Rats”. They did not want to leave. Strange, looking back. I finally remembered my own training, ‘get on the deck and crawl’, I did, you can breath down low, the smoke goes up. I tried to do my duty, and was grateful to breath fresh air once out on the cat walk.

Fortunately the damage was not great, and no injuries. Years later I was an inspector for Ships Intelligence Centers. I was on the Forrestal for two weeks during her refresher training.  The Chaplain was a great guy with very good worship services.

She received very good marks in readiness.  Sometimes readiness comes from some terrible incident in the past.

I am talking about the Forrestal now because at her commissioning, She cost our government 217 million (todays figure 2 billion). This year she sold for ONE PENNY!  The Navy tried to find someone to use her as a museum, but had no takers.


Now let me tell you, if you had bought this SHIP, and anchored her out, you would have some kind of home.  Maybe have a hotel, at her prime she carried 85 planes, fed and housed, about 5,500 men and officers.

I am sitting here imagining a nice Hotel. Boats carrying customers to and Fro. An area on the flight deck for Helicopters of the rich and famous to land…..  Near the tropical trees (planted on deck) and Big Olympic size pool….Oh well they are dreams.

I am sure there are sailors from the Forrestal history saying, “A PENNY? ONE CENT?”

Thanks for coming by the log.

Nite Shipslog


No one knows their future, I wonder if our life’s value is decided in our final fate?


1964 Studebaker Truck

Shirl’s 1964 Studebaker truck, I have seen my mama in the back of that truck, we joked about the Beverly Hill Billies.

That is an award for first place on the hood.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Did you ever have that feeling…


I am forgetting something!  I am sure you all have read the joke being forwarded around the internet about the ‘sometimers’ disease.

It goes like this: I went out to get the mail. On the way noticed a plant that needed watering. Went into the kitchen to get a cup of water and thought about the chicken I was going to fix for supper. While headed for the freezer, I noticed my car keys, whoa I need to go get gas before out trip. Grabbing the keys and heading out the door I noticed thru the Bedroom door I had not made the bed. I put the keys down and headed for the bedroom.  etc  it goes on until the day is done and nothing is accomplished.


This morning Sherry asked what was on my agenda for the day? I said I did not know yet, but I had better get started. I thought of the A/C cover I needed to repair. So I went into the shop. Lo and behold there was the Ships wheel that I had started to rework, it has our name on it, I usually place it between  our flags. Then I remembered I had started waxing the front of the Motor home.

To shorten this up. I did put a coat of paint on the ships wheel. Then took the A/C cover off and lowered it. cleaned the inside so I could add fiberglass to it. While that was drying I continued waxing the front of the motor home. I bounced between these three tasks  and finished two of them. (Cover fiberglass not ready to finish). 


I feel like I am forgetting something important, and it is bugging me.

Also on my mind, I bought an auto buffing machine a few years back, I tried it and couldn’t figure the best way to use it.  I tried it again today, still do not like it.  Do any of you or your family use one of these things? I found I can do it just as well by hand, myself.

Thanks for coming this way. I still cannot think of what I am missing….

Nite Shipslolg


I hope I think or dream of it tonight.



1964 Bizzarrini 300


I have definitely never seen one of these, but I like it..

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

The Last Picture (Methinks)

Since about 1958 I have been doing chalk illustrations. Poems, songs and stories came alive(to many) as I enjoyed the challenge of interaction with the audience. My first drawings with lights was with the old Christmas tree color wheel.

Then I graduated to two colored flood lights, then four. I had switches in a hand held box . Then I added a dimmer for sunsets/ sunrises etc.

The huge improvement was when I learned to use the Black light and ‘invisible chalk’. There are two types of florescent chalk. Standard colors and the invisible color, without the black light every color appears white. An example, I could draw a tree, it appeared white, under the black light it would have a brown trunk and brilliant green leaves.

Next came the remote controls for the lights, a great addition. I no longer had to be concerned about the lights Sherry had the control of that. When we used canned music, she could even turn on the tape player.


(Above is one half of the equipment at the end)

This allowed for a lot of imagination. I could do a picture with a huge cloud, and in the white cloud could have an entirely new picture. For religious programs the ‘Holy white city’ worked out great in the cloud, it could not be seen until the song was sung and Sherry from the audience would dim the lights and turn on the black light, showing the city in gold in the cloud.

I added a second easel for the intro and fun stuff and held the ornate one for the serious section. But as you can imagine in the end we were carting in about 75 lbs of equipment for each showing, but with that it was ALWAYS a thrill to see kids eyes light up.

Sunday morning, went well, even with the improvised lighting.


This is Violet and Bobby’s 18th year of coming to this nursing home. She puts some exercise into the songs, the folks really enjoy it. It is a great morning worship for them.


Sherry got into it too! Violet is perfect for the seniors, with that deep smile. She is very good at what she is doing.


Once introduced I always do a few trick drawings. the Frog to Horse is always a hit.


This morning’s picture was my favorite. the picture has changed over the years (see below), but the story has not. Illustrating Sam Walter Foss’ “House by The Side Of The Road” and Edgar Guest’s “Home”. 


(Previous ‘House by the Side of The Road were on paper)

I use the tale Foss gave, that was the inspiration for his poem.


I used small 30 watt Black lights and this one was done on Velvet. Of course when I first started I had hair!!!

Thanks for coming along for the last picture.(My Sherry, a doubting Thomas says, “Yeah, right!”)
Nite shipslog


Folks tell me they really enjoy the presentations, but I am sure not half as much as I enjoyed them.


1956 Power hawk shirl

Shirl’s 1956 Power Hawk.