Sunday, January 31, 2016

Captured Alive

Oh dear me.

I just knew I should not have gone to that renaissance fair.

Next thing I knew I was forcibly captured and sold to the highest bidder.

Stuck in a tank.

For amusement.

They even posted a dwarf to guard me making sure I don't escape.

Shh... I think I've found a way out of here when the coast is clear.

Even a dwarf has to go find a tree to water now and then.

Saturday, January 30, 2016


Home sweet home during the recent full moon.

It can and does get c-c-c-cold in Florida sometimes. That's my front door window thermometer a few days ago when we had a severe cold snap. The awning is dropped low in the background because we had gutsy gusty winds the day before. I didn't put the awning away because it can be really cantankerous at times. I had one end lashed to the 8 foot 8 ton picnic table. The opposite end had straps on it that were attached to two collapsible water bladders on the ground. Each bladder can hold 10 liters of water which is about 20 pounds each.

For me that is easier than trying to twist one of those massive screw stakes into the earth and then tie down the awning.

Any day now I am going to put the awning away so I can drive the motorhome to the bicycle shop. Now that's an oxymoron.

The Renaissance Fair is opening in the park adjacent to the campground.  Maybe I should dress up my doggy as a miniature dragon and go see what all the hoopla is about.

The recent torrential rains and I mean RAINS made the park very swampy in areas. I felt sorry for the organizers sloshing around in the muck, trying to set everything up. Many brought their tents and RV's so there is a lot of boondocking around the park.

Dozens of porta pottys are set up in huge groups but it hardly looks like enough based on the thousands of visitors expected.

I hope to go see some of the events since they are literally right in my backyard.

I am sure they had mermaids during the renaissance. If not then I can always be a pirate.


Thursday, January 28, 2016

Since I Seen Al

Maintaining Independence is important to many of us in spite of a few minor challenges with health or memory.

Here are some shortcuts to aid and assist in personal independence.

Sleep in clothes fully dressed, wake up ready for the day.

Pick a maintenance free hairstyle such as dreadlocks.

Keep shoes by the front door so you remember what they are for.

Stock an annual supply of toilet paper so you don't forget what THAT is for.

Wear your keys around your neck.

Lick the the dishes clean after eating, saves the hassle of washing them.

Write your name and address on your forearm. Comes in handy if you have to fill out forms.

Keep your  reading glasses available on top of your head, they will fit snugly in the dreadlocks.

Matter of fact, keep your wallet stuffed in your dreadlocks too.

Keep pen and paper close by for useful notes

Since I don't have a doorbell on my motorhome, I used that pen and paper to post a note to visitors:
"No doorbell, YELL Ding Dong Ding Dong"

Smart phones can make you feel mighty dumb, stick to the mentally challenged phones that only make and receive calls.

If anyone accuses you of being chronically forgetful, tell them you've already Seen Al and Al says you're fine.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Grab Life and GO!

I am alive, kicking, screaming and carrying on.

When you stop carrying on... they carry you off!

So I live like a roller coaster. When I am down and out sick and tired, I know I am at the bottom of the roller coaster, slowly, painstakingly working my way up to the top for the WHEEEEEEEE factor of life is goof.

Not sure that made any sense, but I woke up alive. The above scene is from one of the numerous ponds in the park.

Right now I have a ton of projects and chores to do. I was busy all day until I couldn't go anymore then sadly I plopped down on the bed. Well, not really that sad... I told myself over and over how wonderful it is to be busy.

I am always cobbling something together somewhere to stretch and maximize an efficient budget or to make something actually work which is failing. Now if I could just patch up this body.

It's hard to slow down and realize that naps are healing. Rocking in the rocking chair is very restorative. It's a good motion that helps kick in a good feeling. I often meditate while rocking making pain go away naturally. It's not easy, but with enough focus, I can make it work.

The hard part is not feeling guilty as work piles up around me.

It looks like I am going to be living in this old rig a lot longer than imagined and ditto for  living in the old motorhome. Pretty soon it will be a classic. (Don't I wish...)

Nothing beats that paid for smell.

Hmm... not sure any of this makes any sense.

My New Year hope is to get my groove grooving.

Many days I wake up pretending everything is just fine and perfect. It seems to set the tone that if I plaster a smile on m face, toil away at alternatives for my body and mind plus plenty of busy work to remind me life is long, death is short.

Eventually I actually accomplish a few things to completion. Some things that overwhelmed me have created some problems and I try to find ways to solve them and the ones that seem insurmountable, well I just have to be more methodical and when things goes wrong...

Well I am rambling along here, proud to be tired.

Grab life and GO!


Sunday, January 24, 2016

Only 37F Here Today

Another beautiful day in paradise!

Busy keeping cold here. I don't think my Caribbean blood is ever going to thaw out.

If you see a big blob waddling around the park with a small dog, that's me in 3 shirts, 2 sweaters,  a poncho, a jacket, long underwear, short underwear, leggings, jeggings, blue jeans, 2 pairs of socks and faux fur boots. Oh and let's not forget the scarf, trench coat, hat and gloves. It only takes me an hour and a half,  to put all this on for a frigid 10 minute walk with my little canine so he can do his leaks and lumps then drag me back to the wheel estate because he is c-c-c-cold too.

37F degrees in Melbourne, Florida and chilly winds. Matter of fact yesterday winds were steady at over 30 miles per hour with gusts of 60. Several campers around the park had their popup canopies destroyed recently due to either heavy pounding rains or gutsy gusty winds.

Oh the joys of camping!

I am just oh so grateful and thankful that somehow, someway through big and small miracles and the help of beloved angels, I woke up alive and I have a roof over my head plus a heater that works. Life is wonderful!

In spite of the glacial weather, I checked and rechecked my beloved bicycle. It is locked, tied and leashed to the 8 foot 8 ton picnic table. It's my ticket to improved health. I don't get far, but I have fun trying.

A few weeks ago I finally found a fantastic cover for my Day 6 bicycle. It was advertised on Amazon as an adult tricycle cover but many things can be re-purposed for other uses. I had been searching for a bicycle cover and nothing came up that would fit my unique bike. But when I tried searching for a tricycle cover, this one (shown below) appeared in the search. I measured and remeasured, because I kept coming up with an inch short on their versus my measurements. On a wing and a prayer, I decided to order it anyhow.

Well I am not sure who measured wrong, me or them. Who cares? It works! It fits! Wheee!

It covers my bicycle which has raised handlebars, a raised seat back plus the twin panniers in the rear and the puppy dog basket up front.

day 6 bicycle by dear miss mermaid

Speaking of puppy dogs...

harley dog, dog bed

Six pounds of hyperactive trouble finally takes a nap. This is an extremely rare photo. Most of my dog pics are blurred because the little devil is in constant motion.


Saturday, January 23, 2016


I am so blessed to wake up alive finding peace and harmony in simple pleasures.

 My spirit soars but the body wanes.

A bed and a rocking chair.

Both afford me fantastic views to dream upon.

My folding rocking chair unbolted again nearly collapsing. I wasn't even rocking at the time, just staring off into the wild blue yonder urging my body to heal itself.

A dear sweet angel fetched new sturdier nuts and bolts putting it back together again, better than new. The manufacturer should have taken lessons.

At 3:33am I was up looking for a warm beverage. I was cold from the inside out. Fevers and chills playing tricks on me.

Surprisingly, my phone rang.

At 3:33 am.

When I answered my voice wouldn't cooperate fully, so my greeting came out more like a cross between a grunt and a whimper.

A gravelly voice announced he had the wrong number.

Life is goof.

Visit Amazon
Earth's Biggest Selection

Thursday, January 21, 2016

Stalking Harley

My little dog was outside on his long tether. He had dragged out most of his toy box to keep him company.

I had the motorhome door wide open, I was bebopping back and forth trying to get a few minor projects done. Mostly simple stuff like tidying up loose ends. I've been resting a bunch lately, so when I am up and about, I want to be busy.

Harley can be overprotective of me when I am having a rough go. He seems to think I am his injured pup that needs fierce protection. On the flip side, he forgets he is part of the food chain during daylight hours too.

I went to see what he was barking at behind the motorhome. It was this humongous bird of prey in a tree above Harley, surveying him for lunch. I snapped a few pics while Harley was trying to bark it away, then I snatched up my fur baby and brought him inside for safety.

That is when the bird took flight. I missed the picture,  but the 5 foot wingspan was an awesome sight.

More later. 
Life is goof. 


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Short Attention Span

Harley Dawg wanted to take piano lessons. I was reminding him that he has a very short attention span and last time he went to school it was a near disaster. (See Class Clown ) 

After much pestering, I finally caved in and set up piano lessons for him. Harley promised to pay attention and not get so distracted like he did at K-9 school.

I was so proud of him as he paid close attention to the instructor and piano. I snapped a few pics of my baby taking his first lesson. Like Harley, I too was only 6 years old at my first piano session. It almost brought a tear to my eye, thinking about the similarities. We all want out fur babies to grow up like we did. 

I will let Harley tell you the rest of the story...

"Oh boy! A piano! I can't wait to get my paws on this! Middle C? Got it! 8 notes? How handy, I have 8 toes! Oh this is going to be so much fun! Can you teach me to sing too?"

"Hmm, what are the neighbors up to? Is that snooty dog coming outside? Hey! You ain't nothing but a hound dog!"

"Oh a birdy! Look at the bird fly by! Oh there he goes. Bye bye black bird. Hey what's that squirrel up to? Is it going to rain today?"

"I wonder where my Frisbee is. I like Frisbee. What time are we playing Frisbee today?"

"What was that you said? Oh right. Am I paying attention? I'm too broke to pay attention! How can I pay for anything? I don't have any pawkets to carry money.  Take my picture! Take my picture! Can I have a treat after this?"

And so it goes... Harley still has trouble focusing for very long. He has a selective learning disorder. Sadly, I don't think piano lessons are for him after all. He's just too distracted. 


Sunday, January 17, 2016

Embarrassing the Dog

I am back on the 30 day challenge trying to ride my bicycle everyday for 30 days. It doesn't matter how far I go, as long as I ride somewhere everyday it's not pouring down rain during every daylight minute.

I count that as an exception.

My rules.

I can make them up and change them too. But I try to keep it simple. The idea behind the 30 day challenge is creating a great habit. So as long as it isn't snowing or raining every single minute of the daylight, I have to find a minute or more to climb up on my bicycle and pedal away.

Sometimes my wardrobe is lacking.
Sometimes I get cold super easy.

I wanted to ride my bicycle.
But as I rode along the wind whipped up my sleeves making my forearms frigid.

My sleeves were too loose and too short.
I was cold.

I went back home.

No fair!

I don't like my black socks, they are 6 years old and failing. I know they are six years old because they were 100% cotton black socks I found on sale for under a dollar when I first came back to America in my Caribbean clothes and found myself freezing at the astonishing low temps below 70F.


A little dim lightbulb came on in my head.

I opened up my drawer with the old black socks and cut the toes out of one pair. Then I shoved one up each forearm with the cut toes at the elbows and the finished calf part at the wrist.

WOW! It warmed up my arms and I climbed back on my bicycle to ride some more with my puppy dog.

When Harley saw me come back outside to ride our bicycle with socks shoved on myforearms, he curled up in embarrassment, trying to hide inside his basket.

Out of sight, out of mind.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Return Of Alien UFOs

I didn't post for a few days because I was traveling on a UFO with aliens, but I'm back now, so here I am!

One night we heard funny noises like an old car driving back and forth about to throw a rod. We were laughing and making up stories, wondering what this car on it's last legs was doing running up and down the road. It was dark thirty, we couldn't see the car, just hear it.

A loud rat-a-tat-tat that would seemingly drive away and then stop, going silent. A few minutes later, we would hear the loud rat-a-tat-tat start up again, drive back the other way and then stop, going silent again. A few minutes later, this would repeat again. We wondered why someone with such a sick ailing car was driving back and forth every few minutes.

The next morning we discovered ALIENS had landed their starship. Sorry for the fuzzy picture. I am never sure how close to get to alien ships what with them abducting people and me unsure whether or not I want to be abducted.

I mean to say, I love a good adventure, but riding on an alien ship is something I am still contemplating, so for now, I just stay far away from them.

alien ufo, alien starship, aliens, alien spacecraft

But there is the old adage, curiosity killed the cat.

However there is also the rejoinder, satisfaction  brought it back.


I leashed up my little trusty doggy to go investigate. I haven't seen many spaceships closeup, might as well go sneak a peek at this one.

If aliens were going to take me far away on their spaceship, then by golly, I wanted my pup along for the ride. Besides Harley dog enjoys traveling by bicycle, motorhome, car, golf cart, shopping cart, boat, motorcycle, you name it, he wants to ride on it.

alien ufo, alien starship, aliens, alien spacecraft

Well, holy cow, there is ANOTHER spaceship parked nearby. This one has festooned theirs with multiple flags including American, French and Italian. I couldn't quite make out the rest at this distance.

So THAT is what the funny ailing car sound was! The aliens were putting up their flags and using some sort of noisy gadget to tie down their guide wires. Well, that mystery is solved.

Perhaps they come in peace to meet humans and doggies. Why else would they fly all those flags?

OK, I am moving in CLOSER.

The wanderlust in me just can't resist. Maybe a ride on a spaceship would be awesome! I've been on planes, trains, cars, elephants, donkeys, horses, bicycles, golf carts, motorhomes, assorted boats and other stuff afloat so why not take my chances on a spaceship?

Life is long, death is short.

After all, I have been to the UFO Welcome Center and I wrote about that at this link in 2014. Now that I do my research, I did write about my spaceship ride with aliens in 2013 at this link. I guess I had forgotten about that, aliens like to erase the memory so you have no recall, that's why I wrote about it quick as I could and even snapped a picture of their garden on another planet here.  I zapped it all from their ship out to the internet before my memory was erased. I guess I outsmarted them!

Funny I couldn't remember ANY of that until I did a search just now. Something seemed like deja voodoo, like there was a UFO in my past.

Harley and I march forward. We are going to gamble that we make it back alive. 

And we did!

Well that's today's comedy in the circus of life.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Ethel Heckle

Well our heat wave of temps in the 80's has plummeted to 51F degrees.

This old rig isn't built for the cold.
And neither is my motorhome.

If it gets any colder, I am going to Florida.

Oh wait, my GPS thinks I am in Florida. I hope she is right. We call her Ethel because she sounds like Ethel from the  "I Love Lucy" (the iconic TV show from the 1950's)  when she talks, except she speaks slower sometimes and mispronounces numerous words, which makes me laugh. Ethel and Lucy make me laugh too, so Ethel seems like a fitting name all around. Which I do know a super nice lady named Ethel and I hope she takes this with pride and not with insult.


Last September I managed to finally visit Jekyll Island (off the coast of Georgia) for the first time ever in my life. I fell in love with the place despite the 2.3 million mosquitoes. But since I had arrived armed with 8 cans of bug repellent and a big cheap box fan, not from a big box store, which  confuses me, but a big square fan commonly called a box fan. I stick to the cheap ones because they take a beating with outdoor use, especially if one is occasionally forgetful and it takes a rain bath.

jekyll island campground, georgia

Not that I am ever forgetful.

Not me.

Now, um, what was I talking about?

Oh yeah, Jekyll Island.

Or was it that darn fan?

Which I like to call my fan "electric wind" because I lived in the Caribbean so long under cooling temperate trade winds (which blow the skeeters away) and if the wind dies like it does in August in the islands (and heaven help you then, it's why so many folks take month long vacations in August and leave the islands) but for us hearty souls (like me) who were left behind,  then one needs "electric wind" to continue the flow. (I wish I were so hearty now but I'm not, I'm a limp wimp when it get hot and humid these days.) Besides my Caribbean career was topsy turvy, I worked nights, weekends, holidays and the oppressive August when others were chilling out somewhere else.

The cool thing was, middle of week, when most others were working, I might be grazing at the beach bar while lazing at the beach, pretending to be a tourist without a care in the world.

Hmm... I miss those days. But these days are pretty good too, so it all equals out... I guess.

jekyll island campground, georgia

Anyhow, the big fan is super useful outdoors to blow the little mozzies away and of course the repellent is useful for when one is not near a big fan or the natural wind has died or the little buggers are eating me alive for dinner.

Funny to be so large (compared to noseeums) yet realizing I am merely part of the food chain. Life is goof. 

Jekyll rhymes with  heckle... and so does Ethel... but Ethel would refuse this notion saying  "g-COWL" with the emphasis on COWL.

Along for the drive, I had a friend with me and we would dissolve into hysterical laughter every time Ethel would heckle Jekyll.

This may or may not have been influenced by my pain pills. At the time I was recuperating from a shattered wrist, the pain made me a big old grumpy grouch and my darling sweet friend was doing the driving since I could not.

jekyll island campground, georgia

Speaking of being a grumpy grouch...

My friend *ahem* would occasionally implore me to take a pucking fain pill because I was a pucking fain in the derriere.

I did not realize I was such a gawd awful patient (I was! I was terrible!) but I was trying to protect my ailing failing kidneys by skipping the pain pills but it was making me appear to be angry like a hungry bear who came out of hibernation to discover all the honey within 500 miles was raided long ago.

Soooooooooo...  sometimes I caved in and took my puckin fain pills for my pucking fain and then I could giggle and laugh like a sensible person.

jekyll island campground, georgia

I would say "Ethel don't heckle Jekyll!" and we would dissolve into more wild giggles. It became a contest to figure out more foolishness which kept us in stitches.

Ethel with the freckle don't heckle Jekyll.

Ethel would tone in "Take exit 19 towards gee-COWL Island." followed by our raucous laughter.

I sat behind the passenger seat in another seat because it was too uncomfortable for me to sit in the passenger seat what with Harley trying to pile into my lap, which required my good arm to hold him so he didn't slide off my short thighs into the floor and  me trying to punch buttons on Ethel the GPS since my friend refuses to learn that or alternately trying to read from written directions, in case Ethel fails (she sometimes shuts down for no reason and refuses to come back on again). Oh the joys of old technology!

This left Harley with the passenger seat all to himself, something he loves anyhow. I became a back seat driver and a heckler...

Last year I wrote about Ethel breaking down in Richmond Hills, Georgia. For about 5 months, whenever I turned on Ethel, she would insist I was parked at Dollar Tree in Richmond Hills, Georgia. No amount of waiting (hours, days, weeks) could convince her otherwise. I read the manual, I tried to reset her, I tried to search online for help, I tried everything anyone suggested beyond the manual and turning her off and imploring her to striaghten up and fly right.

Every few days or weeks, I would play with Ethel, trying to coax her into working again. One day while driving my motorhome out shopping, Ethel was still fixated on being parked 600 miles away, so  I was going to toss her in the garbage. I was entertaining ideas about jumping up and down on her and smashing her to pieces out of sheer frustration but knowing that I was far too lazy to actually do that, but still it was fun to fantasize about it.

Absent mindedly, I turned her off and back on again, something I had done probably ten thousand times in 5 months in an attempt to get her to work correctly again. Ethel suddenly decided to acquire signal and pinpoint my exact location correctly. No idea what THAT was about. Maybe Ethel is really a bear and was simply coming out of hibernation.

Ethel Baechle with the freckle don't heckle Jekyll.

"Turn right into gee-COWL Island Campground"

Ethel Baechle with the speckle freckle, please don't heckle Jekyll.

Ethel Baechle with the speckle freckle, here's a shekel, now don't heckle Jekyll.

Ethel Meckel Baechel with the cute speckle freckle, I give you a shekel if you don't heckle Jekyll.

Honest to goodness, we laughed so much, missing a turn (what's life without a detour?) it's a miracle we ever found the Jekyll Island campground at all.

For good measure, Ethel told us the "jee-COWL Island Campground was on the right, when in fact it was on the left.

I guess that's what we get for our Ethel heckle.

***Note... all the above pictures are some I took at Jekyll Island, 2015

Saturday, January 09, 2016

Travels With Harley

Another beautiful day in paw-adise...

Wickham Park Campground, melbourne, florida

Mirror reflections in a small pond mesmerize my canine soul.

frog chalk

Space is at a premium in our little old wheel estate  but during the holidays the human let me doodle on the windows with Liquid Chalk Markers by Frog Chalk. 

I paws-itively love hamburger! I guess the human isn't very hungry. She made her burger very small.

hamburger for Harley

I'm in the basket, ready to ride... and nothing is happening.

Is there a secret to make this Day 6 bicycle roll through the park? I want to feel the wind in my fur. It makes my ears stand up!

Look at me! I can stand on one paw! Looky looky!

Nap time is more fun with my new buddy ducky from Secret Supa Santa.

harley dog naps, rving with pets, rving with dog

While I am napping...

Thursday, January 07, 2016

Dear Fellow Campers

Dear fellow campers. 

I am so very sorry for that short loud startling scream heard around the campground early this morning. I apologize for interrupting your slumber or unintentionally causing you to slosh coffee down your shirt. Please excuse me. 

Glancing out my window early this morning, I see the usual umbilical cords that tether my motorhome to my current campsite. Water, electric, sewer. 

Except, um, hmm...

Something long and dark next to my sewer hose. Oh my gosh! No one wants to see "stuff" next to their sewer hose. A leak? 

Oh gawd no, please tell me there is nothing leaking from my sewer hose. I slid open my window to stick my head outside my wheel estate for a big sniff and a better look. 


Can't smell a thing indecorous. Well, thank goodness for small favors. 

But WHAT is that?


Is that snakes a mating?


And that was the scream heard round the campground this morning.

Please accept my sincere apologies for the startled shriek.

Life is goof.

Earth's Largest Selection

Wednesday, January 06, 2016


The nail that sticks up gets hammered.

So I got hammered and I am so confused.

I wasn't a nail sticking up at all, I was just a loose screw.

So while I figure out my next misstep, enjoy some pictures from 2015, reminders it was a very good year.

I woke up alive every single day last year defying the odds.  A miracle. I remind myself over and over to smile and be grateful. Life is goof! 

Sunset at Long Point, Florida, February 2015

Indiantown Marina, Florida March 2015
I was longing to sail away again. Fatten up my passport. 

My first passport when I worked at sea, filled up so quickly, they had to add accordion pages to it at an American Embassy to make room for more stamps.

Smoke on the water, Hardee Lakes, Florida, April 2015

When you come to a fork in the road, take it!

When I told Harley to pick out a new toy, he chose a boat.  

A little kid once told me if you want a kitten, start out asking for a horse.

Art  in the eye of the beholder. 
Traders Hill, Georgia

Honest John's, still open, still staffed by family. 

A hazy day on a far away island, Harley dog takes me for a barefoot walk in 2015.
See all the twirls in the long leash? He was running circles around me in sheer glee, going faster than the swivel could keep up. 

Take me home, country roads. 
To the place I belong. 

No matter where you go, there you are. 

Monday, January 04, 2016

Crockpot Cornbread Recipe

1 box Jiffy Cornbread Mix
2 Eggs
1/2 cup Jalepeno Slices
1 can whole kernel corn, drained
1 tablespoon minced garlic

Line crockpot with foil
Coat with oil (I used coconut oil)

Bake on high in crockpot until done...

About 90 minutes give or take, crockpots vary

Toothpick inserted in center should come out clean

Remove foil and cornbread from crockpot

Let it sit about 5-10 minutes, then carefully peel foil from sides of cornbread

Slice into wedges and enjoy!

Some folks like to drizzle butter over or in it.

If your crockpot has a hot spot like mine does, then rotate the crock 180 degrees after an hour.