Select Page

Odds & Ends

Just wanted to catch up with several things.

Remember when I mentioned our house sitter yesterday? Brandon does a fabulous job in keeping our house up while we are away. Brandon has to deal with DT's mail, my mail and mail for my business. He sorts it all and FedEx's it to us along the road. There are chores and maintenance on a big old house in the country. No worries. We have Brandon. 

Brandon's duties allow him to be paid to live in a big old house in the country. With a hot tub. Home gym. Big screen HDTV. Wifi. You get the picture. Oh, and here is another thing. Apparently, a three-week house sitting stint is stressful and a guy needs a little break.

Yep. You guessed it. Brandon - at our Rose Bowl tailgate January 1st in Pasadena. He flew down for a few days of fun and sun. We had six inches of snow at our house - I don't blame him. Come on - the post office doesn't even deliver mail on January 1st.

Another thing I wanted to mention was our mpg on the trip - just over 7 miles per gallon. We are quite pleased. This is just about what we were getting with our old Country Coach - but with our new low-emission diesel engine and the new ultra-low-sulfur fuel, we are polluting the planet less. Yeah. DT keeps the speed to around 60 mph on the interstate and uses cruise control when ever possible. We did not use the Aqua-Hot diesel burner (or our generator) even once on this trip, so feel the readings are very accurate. (Oops. Guess we should have tested the Aqua-Hot and generator at least once. Use it or lose it. My bad.)

Next item on the agenda is a new product I recently tried. McKay gave us a box of the new Starbucks "instant" coffee, VIA. VIA isn't a dehydrated coffee product. Instead, Starbucks has developed a method to "micro-grind" the coffee into such a fine powder, it dissolves instantly when added to hot water. Magic!

VIA is perfect for the RV lifestyle - camping or hiking... and immensely better than the junk packets found in most hotel rooms! Just add 8 ounces (one cup) of boiling water! VIA comes in three brews: Columbian, Italian Roast and Decaf Italian Roast. Reviews have been mixed, but I was really impressed with the intense flavor. DT and I like a cup of coffee mid-afternoon and we will be using the convenience of the VIA packets quite often in the motorhome. Pick-up a box of VIA the next time you are at your local Starbucks, or order it here from amazon.com... then let me know what you think.

In other news... our girl, The Lovely Lisa, flew into Portland this morning. Tomorrow we will all travel (by car) to Bend to visit with my family, but tonight we had dinner with Lisa's BFF - Jen - at Mingo in Beaverton. I don't know about you, but being around young people keeps me young. I love listening to the kids gossip, chat, joke and tease each other. Unfortunately, the girls are fat and unattractive, so would not submit to a photo - but they did allow me to photograph their dinner entrees.

Jen ordered the Mingo signature dish, Penne al Sugo di Carne. It is beef braised in Chianti and espresso tossed with penne pasta.

Lisa ordered Capasante - pan seared scallops with a roasted red pepper and chili sauce over lentils with sautéed leeks.

Until my next update, I remain, your "you can do side bends or sit-ups, but please don't lose that butt" correspondent.