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The only camping I ever did growing up was in a makeshift tent in my backyard. From there after I moved to Olathe, KS (suburb of Kansas City), I got involved with a man 21 years older than me and fell madly in love. We took many road trips many of them on our motorcycles across county. I had a Honda 400 4. He had a Z1 Kawasaki. I just kept downshifting in the mountains. Found out he was married, wife living in another state. I broke it off. Two years later after some healing I moved to AK. I moved to Alaska when I was 28. I fell right into camping, rafting, flying, horseback riding, snow showing, snow skiing, hiking, bonfires, in state traveling, working the Iditarod, snow machining, bike riding, 4 wheeling, dog sledding, all of the outdoor things you can do in Alaska. My favorite thing, I think, was doing a 100 mile float trip in a 16’ rubber raft on the Copper River. But difficult to say favorite thing because whatever I was doing at the time was terrific! I also worked one summer in a hunting and fishing camp 90 miles above the Arctic Circle on the WulikRiver. Another summer I worked on the North Slope as a maid at a couple of camps in the oil fields. Mostly in the summers I played. ‘‘Twas a good life in Alaska. After 26 years there I got tired of rearranging snow and also of the cold so decided to move to Hawaii.
Then there’s Hawaii. I moved to the island of Hawaii, the Big Island, in September of ‘05. Worked the first 3 years then retired. Within the first year of moving there I got certified to scuba dive and enjoyed that for some years. I had a few favorite snorkeling places. And I camped a lot, all tent camping. I set myself up well and could create a comfortable little nest. Within a month I got involved in the world of musicians. I learned to play marimba and got into a marimba band. I carry a mini with me. Then last year I bought a hang drum also called a hand pan and now spend time learning it. I also play shakers and love honing in on the pulse. The main beat. I can always find it. I’ll play with any band that will let me play with them. Every Wednesday night there is music down in Kalapana and I would sometimes play shakers for the Kalapana band. It fed my spirit. Music filled much of my time. And I loved the Warm Ponds down in Kapoho. And now that area sits under feet and feet and feet of lava. I bought a house and fixed it up. It looked great and was great. It served me well. I spent many many hours keeping the cane grass from eating up my yard. I had one neighbor family across the road. When I moved in there were 3 of them-mom, dad, 12 year old son. Within a year her daughter with 5 kids moved in and husband moved out. The dynamics changed. I made friends with all the kids. What are you gonna do, right? And then mom (whom I still love and we keep in contact) took in her ex husband’s screaming Cockatoo. Ugh. I prayed for peace over that bird many... times. After over a year I decided to sell and my house sold within a month. A done deal. That was 2 months before the lava erupted. Good timing. I needed a second new hip. So I left Hawaii for CA, got a new hip, recouped, bought my 97D190V and thus began my traveling life I am now living. I left Hawaii without the intention of returning to live. She’s calling my name and has since within 2 weeks of leaving. It’s not a strong knock you in the head kind of strong. It’s just there. If something else comes along that’s appealing I could go another direction. I used to use the analogy of casting an imaginary fishing line out and reeling it in. Now I just cast out in multiple directions and see what comes back. Sometimes it’s a catch, sometimes not. Either is ok.
Relationships: I’ve always been good at developing friendships. Well mostly, we all have that one or few people with whom we’ve crossed paths and they just don’t like us for whatever reason. I have a few of those. And I have some with whom I’ve known for 60 years and some 40 years with whom I am still close. They love me warts and all. Family is well, family. Close to cousins, sisters not so much. One hasn’t spoken to me since Mom died 7 years ago in May. She was 6 when I left home and I when I left, I left and didn’t nurture a relationship. I was in survival mode and have done that. The other sister speaks but is distant. Their choice. I have moved on and would love it if they could move on with me. They’re stuck. That’s ok too. My arms are open should they change their mind and decide or learn to communicate. I have created family wherever I’ve lived. And then there’s men. I have just never met the ‘right’ one. I would like to and share life with a partner. We shall see what the future holds. I have pretty much bared my soul. Rarely drink, like cannabis though don’t partake regularly. Occasional prescription meds though mostly those are bandaids. I like to eat organic though it’s a challenge on the road. Need to exercise more and stop smoking. And lose 5 pounds, what woman doesn’t want to lose a few pounds? A few I guess. Guess that wraps it up. And I would like crossing paths with you in my travels. Invite me if you feel so moved and we’ll see where my travels lead.