At Home – On DESERT VENTURE

2009 Fall Road Trip for D/V Crew

Omigosh! I knew we were in Southern California, when we broke through to the coast at Pismo Beach. There were gorgeous palm trees! Palm trees! And, then looking out to the Pacific Ocean, our breath was stolen from us as we cast our eyes on a perfect sunset. The seas were a very calm deep blue and purple and the skies were variegated pinks, lavenders, and gold. We were THERE! This is what we had dreamed of all summer – winter in warmer waters…only we weren’t on the water – we were in the car. And DESERT VENTURE wasn’t about to make her rendezvous at our friends’ dock. We had driven south to get to our early November rendezvous with boating friends in Oxnard, CA. [I was so busy reveling with the warmth and the palm trees, I totally spaced out taking a picture of the palms!]

We thoroughly enjoyed our week in SO CAL. It was full of fun and boating friends. M/V AARON SAWYER, M/V NALU, M/V SOUL MATES, S/V CUTTHROAT, and M/V DESERT VENTURE were represented at the birthday party. We also had the opportunity to meet more dear friends and family of Mike and Maureen.

It was a great time! Thank you for including us in your wonderful celebration! We spent three days in Oxnard, where we visited with friends we met as a result of our winter in Mexico in 2006. Our focus was a big birthday bash for Mike, who turned a ripe young 70 years of age. It was a beautiful event, and we all got dressed up to have a marvelous time.


From Oxnard we drove on down to Long Beach and had a big rendezvous with more boating friends. Wow! It seems such a long time ago, now, but the friendships have endured. We are thankful for the friends and the wonderful visits we had.  In Long Beach MV DISCOVERY (where we stayed aboard – Thank you!), MV MISTY SEA, MV BAND WAGON and DESERT VENTURE were represented.  We are thankful for the friends and the wonderful visits we had.

From Long Beach we beat it west across California, Nevada, and Utah to get to Grand Junction, Colorado, where we spent a wonderful time with the grandchildren and their wonderful parents. It is always a good time with the kids, and it was hard to leave. For the first time, our beautiful granddaughter begged us to stay “just one more day”. Oh, does that really tug at the heart strings…it was a wonderfully awful feeling – to be wanted so sweetly and to not be able to stay.

We drove north to central Wyoming that day to see my family. We had a great few days there, then with my mother in tow, we headed back towards DESERT VENTURE, in Portland, OR. We stopped off in Nampa, ID, where we visited with a very dear friend, Gigi, and then on to my Aunt Maxine’s home, where we were wonderfully welcomed for Thanksgiving. We had a great time with Aunt Maxine and Wayne and the family. Thank you, again, for a great day!

And then the day after Thanksgiving, we headed home, after 23 days of hotels and suitcases, and 3900 plus miles, we were really excited to go home! A wonderful trip, but a long time to live on the dirt and out of a suitcase. We had a super and unexpected welcome when we pulled into the marina parking. Friends that had moved to Olympia had just arrived for a visit, and other friends in the marina all seemed to have congregated at the same time for lots of hugs and talking all at once. My mother thought it had been arranged! Nope! It just happens that way sometimes.

The rains came to the PNW the day we headed south on our big road trip. We watched the weather regularly to see how DESERT VENTURE was fairing without us aboard. Friends sent emails saying that we were missing the rain. No. We were not missing it – not at all! Then we started getting requests to bring the sun with us when we came home. Though I did think it might be possible, we started getting rained on just a few minutes within the Oregon border. I thought to myself, “Welcome back to Oregon”. However, it turned out that we did bring the sun. But as in many situations, one must be careful what one wishes for – as the brilliant sun burned away all the warming clouds, and we endured record cold temperatures for over two weeks, until just these past few days. DESERT VENTURE, being an all aluminum boat, embraced the cold and then wept bitterly for days on end. The condensation just seemed to stream down the bulkheads and the windows on the main level. I am never at my best – well honestly, I am at my worst when the condensation is streaming. The Captain runs to the engine room to escape my grump, and my dear mother didn’t seem to notice. God love our mothers and their patience!!

In spite of the cold temperatures we had a great time, entertaining my mother with many outings. Though she was certain it was too cold to go, in reality, compared to the even colder temperatures in Wyoming, it wasn’t all that bad – and she had fun! Three days after the cold left us, so did Mom. She is safe and sound, back in Wyoming, as of Thursday afternoon. The temperatures have risen into the high 30’s and the high 40’s and once again life is manageable as we are – At Home – on DESERT VENTURE.

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