I know, I skipped a "few" days. But my numbering was odd. It's been just over a year since my first adventure to San Francisco. Nearly a year since I headed out on the biggest adventure. Now 20 states later... we are leaving our "hometown" again for an undetermined amount of time. We're officially on the road again.
The past months I have been painting a giant (15 ft high by 60 ft wide) mural on the side of a building on the west side of Glenwood in Garden City ID (across from the fairgrounds, near Hawks stadium).
Around a month ago, I awoke in a panic. In my nightmare, we had lost everything to a fire... except the cats. Somehow they had all huddled together in a hole under the rubble. Everything else was destroyed.
This week, we planned to leave on 9/9 for our next adventure (well, really we wanted to leave 9/1 but I was still painting that mural). Then, on 9/8, the boys and I painted a clear coat on that mural. A "CLEAR" coat that didn't dry clear. Now, because of parts of that clear coat that didn't dry clear, I might have to repaint a large portion of the mural. I was ready to leave on the 9th still. Saying, "I'll fix it next summer" and hoping the owners would pay me what they owe. Jordan said, "we are not leaving town without you getting paid." Frustrated because I'm ready to MOVE (and because the mural was draining me) I agreed to stick around.
So, we completed errands that we hadn't had time for (including purchasing a cute cruiser bicycle for me) and canceled our stay at our first stop.
We had 5 days scheduled in Redmond so we could check out the Breweries and caves around Bend... then spend a day at Clear Lake (an underwater petrified forest).
Within the few days prior to our scheduled departure, Oregon broke out in wildfires (as did Washington... both places on our planned first legs of this journey). Those two states were suddenly ablaze.
To make things even more obvious that everything happens exactly as it should, before canceling our reservation on the 9th (we were waiting to see what a house painting expert said about the mural) I came across an article stating that our planned first destination was now the evacuation site for the fires. If we had gone, the entire park would've been full of evacuees.
Full goosebumps. Had we not had a problem with the clear coat, we would've been in the midst of the fires. Had I not taken longer to complete the mural (if we had left on the 1st) we definitely would have been in fire danger.
The world is conspiring for you!
So yes, while we still hit the road and had to drive through parts of Oregon and Washington (which were so filled with smoke I couldn't breathe) we will swing back around to Boise to get paid. This is a quick trip to Northern Idaho then Montana, and likely Yellowstone before fixing whatever needs fixed with the mural. Right now though, it's still curing and the manager from Rodda Paint (where I purchased all paint and that damn "clear" coat from) is sending me pictures every day of the clearing progress. He's also testing a removal process... so we shall see. Hopefully, I won't be sanding and repainting!
So the adventure to leave was big. Then... the adventure on the road begins. Once again it looks like we got bad gas. This time in Umatilla OR (don't get your diesel from Crossroads Truck Stop).
Suddenly, a handful of miles from Connel, WA (a little over a quarter of a tank used) we get reduced power to the engine. We limp along and make it to Connel (pedal floored to keep driving 40 mph on the interstate with hazards flashing)... find a place near trucks to park... and call my mechanic - he says "oh shoot you'll have to go through the same thing as last time." I had my truck in before we left for an inspection. A few minor repairs were done but the fuel filter - which if you recall gave us issues in Louisiana after bad gas in April - looked good and was not replaced. Damn it anyway.
There's no mechanic shop open. I think "that guy that helped us on the side of the road in Louisiana just crawled under and did it easy, we can do this." So, we YouTube how to bleed the filter. Apparently this is a common issue because there were a lot of videos and articles. We see how and find where we need to reach but can't get to it. The guy on the side of the road just crawled underneath and did it so easy... but how in the hell he reached it, I have no idea.
I start calling mobil mechanics, none are nearby. Jordan sees a cop pull up to get gas and goes to talk to him...a young man pulls in and parks his semi... his girl getting out of the passenger side. The cop gives us the number of the town's tow truck and diesel guy... the young man asks "what's wrong with your truck" then proceeds to tell us his friend who lives just over there works on diesel engines all the time... he'll go get him after dropping his lady off at home.
After what seems like forever (and hearing the cop joke with the sherif on the phone that someone needs to check on us to make sure we're safe because this town isn't safe... don't worry, he grew up there and was just razzing the other cop) the young man returns, soon followed by a little old fella and another man (likely his son). The little old fella named Junior, walks up...beer in hand, wearing coveralls, and gets right to it. Bleeds the filter, and we have full power again. He shows Jordan and I how to do it but says "replace that filter."
We have a nice chat with them, we talk art and cars. Junior builds low-riders. We see pictures of his (absolutely beautiful). Give him a little beer money (which he refused to take at first) and we're back on the road.
A bit farther, after running through the bad fuel, we reach a gas station and put more fuel treatment in.
No more issues. We'll see if the check engine light is off today. That's what happened in Louisiana.
There's one more interesting thing about where we ended up for our first stop. Recently, we started talking about my Words Matter exhibit and that we need to do more with that again. Well, where we are staying, has an ad for a non-profit who's focus is reducing Veteran suicide.
Everything happens exactly as it should. We arrived late last night so I still need to check us in at the office. I'll be chatting with them about that non-profit for sure!
Let the universe guide you. Stop holding on to how you think things should go because something better is on it's way.
I was so set on leaving the 9th... but we would've had a completely different story to tell if I had held on to that.
Love you all! Today will be full of wonderful adventures! TTFN
I had a dream that I was traveling all over the world. In less than 6 months, I sold almost everything I own...bought a Toy Hauler (the "garage" is my art studio) and am now living wherever, whenever...just me, my art, and my cats.