Sunday, April 30, 2017

Hooray Hooray for the 12th of May!

31 May: Jessup, MD and Montgomery, TX:  Hey! Rain wasn't in the forecast, and Ron was prepared for dry, so he waited 2:00 AM to set up his tent.  Nature called a couple of times, but after the 5:00AM call, he was unable to go back to sleep, and finally arose at 6:30, slightly disoriented and hungry.  Around 8:45, he interrupted conversation with rider Dawn to ride to Weis, hoping that the intermittent electrical problem would appear so the BMW mechanic could see it; no such luck.  The mechanic discovered loose battery cables, very peculiar since Ron and Jim had checked and tightened them earlier.  Ron visited old friends Harry, John, Dale & Nick, nearby in Silver Spring.  Rain fell briefly before dark, and Ron tented in the adjacent Montgomery County park.

30 May: Departure Mount Airy, MD to Baltimore, MD  at 2:00 PM for Cynthia's flight to Texas leaving Ron without adult supervision for six days, Oh! Oh!  Ron will overnight in Jessup, MD spending the day tomorrow overseeing work on the motorcycle's electrical system.    Smooch to my beloved Smooch!  The flight was on time. TSA PreChek was worth the effort.

29 May, SnowShoe Mountain Resort West Virginia  to Mount Airy, Maryland:  Immediately, at COLD-thirty kairos time, we were dressed in gear  and bound down mountain.  After descending to Cass, WV we warmed by ten degrees.  Mother Earth is putting forth spring finery  -  fleurs are fleuring, and  Cynthia was intoxicated by the fragrance of  the lilacs (even Ron noticed the purdy stink).  We drove WV Highway 28 North to Highway 48 East over hills, dales, and alongside mountain streams.  Once we reached I-81 at Winchester, we spun off to Highway 340 north to Highway I-70 to Mount Airy, MD.   Heavy rains raised the river levels enough that rafters were out in abundance.   Jim and Joni left the mountain top an hour ahead of us, but at the junction of highway 33 (their choice) and highway 28 (Ron's GPS chosen) in Seneca Rocks, they rode by as we waited for the light.  Too much fun !!  Jim stopped at a Sheetz gas station in Petersburg, and Ron noticed a "racing stripe" of cords on Jim's rear tire.   Nothing being open Memorial Day for repairs,  Jim made the decision to wait in Petersburg with his bike while we rode on to their home to get the trailer to haul the bike back to their farm.   Joni  refused Ron's assistance driving back to retrieve Jim.   Instead, Ron went for a great walk while visiting his favorite people by phone, sister Carol and Bro Dean.  How interesting Verizon cell service is not available in most of West Virginia.  Ok.  Now you know the saga of our lives to this moment.  We are tired and going to sing ourselves a lullaby. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

28 May, Sunday:  Weather cleared early and everyone was excited to ride, except Cynthia who decided to protect her back by staying "home."

27 May- 29 May: SnowShoe Mountain Resort in West VA for hiking and biking. NO cell service! No computers!!! Rain!!!  Fog so thick it looks like snow.

School kids escaping incarceration in Harpers Ferry
26 May: Early AM departure for a gorgeous 5 hour ride to SnowShoe Mountain Resort in WVA, was accomplished and arrival by 4:00 PM was dry.  Pam, Walt, Jim, Joni arrived later with sun shining. We are on motorcycles hoping to avoid bad weather forecast for the East Coast this weekend.  We remain hopeful! Nevertheless, we have fun. Our lodging is lovely; we have a pool view, mountains off to one side of building.  Verizon has no coverage here.  We-fi is by room phone only. We will put the electronics away.  Have a blessed Memorial Day weekend.  Ron's fans arrived for a sendoff.

Back porch view from West Ridge B & B-less

Disappointed goose couldn't find correct change
25 May: Surprise! It rained all night, but morning's sunny skies brought forth opportunity to ride to breakfast instead of walking because of one hurted leg.  After SCS projects, Ron hiked working up a sweat, while Cynthia rested, iced her leg and caught up with email.  After a trip to Martin's Market in Charles Town for salads and sorbet, the rain began once again.  It is pleasant, cuddled and curled up on the sofa, listening to thunder bellowing and roaring while looking out the large glass windows at the forest green:

Harper's Ferry educational signage is excellent

John Brown holed up here, but was executed anyway

Harpers Ferry rifle manufacturing was innovative and excellent
24 May:  We enjoyed the bright blue skies above as we walked the many blocks to the Country Cafe.  After breakfast the day turned to gray with a bracing chilly wind as we headed to the canal path with legs tired from yesterday's hike.  En route, we stopped at the post office to return the Hoka hiking boots.  Ron is still amazed the Hoka on-line retail store will allow returns for a full refund for thirty days after purchase !!  The mile-plus walk to the trail uphill and down on concrete city sidewalks soon took its toll when Cynthia's IT band became quite painful after another short mile on the canal path.  We had to hobble slowly back into town so that Ron could hurriedly hoof it up to the B&B for the motorcycle to pick up Cynthia in lower town.  The poor dear had to wait right next to a tantalizing display of warm cinnamon rolls.  Ron enjoyed using Cynthia's hiking poles for added boost up the hills and was quite satisfied with his workout.  A large duck waddled into the coffee shop honking her annoyance that no one was feeding her warm cinnamon rolls either.   We immediately rode to Ruby Tuesday's to enjoy hot baked potatoes with the Garden Bar.

23 May:  After walking to the Country Store Cafe for egg white omelets we returned to the B&B for oatmeal because the restaurant didn't have any to order.  Today's hike was on the canal path in between the Shenandoah River and the old canals providing warmth from the wind with terrific views. A very large great blue heron stood sentinel on a huge boulder below the junction of the Potomac and Shenandoah Rivers.  Our total distance was 9 miles!!!  Our awesome friend, Jim S., drove over from Mt. Airy with Cynthia's Gerbings heated gear because she will need it Friday for the ride to SnowShoe Resort.  This much-appreciated act of kindness sent her over the moon with joy.  The three of us had a most enjoyable dinner at Ruby Tuesday's in Charles Town.

22 May:  Harper's Ferry WVA:  Surprise; restaurants are closed on Mondays.  We made hot water in the coffee pot and poured that over our rolled oats and added blueberries for a terrific tasting breakfast.  Our late morning hike proved to us that Cynthia's new hiking boots are too narrow in the toe box.  The Harpers Ferry Outfitter downtown was open with good news the Altra hiking shoe is made with wide toe box.  They fit fine and Cynthia loved them.  After riding to Charles Town and dining at Ruby Tuesdays, we returned to hike another two hours.

21 May: We surprised the Shenk's at Tidings of Peace Church AM; Harper's Ferry, WVA by evening for 4 days of hiking.

20 May:The temperatures dropped considerably making travel on the chilly side.  Plymouth Meeting departure was one PM with arrival in Bethel, PA by three PM to visit Lil Mak and Popeye, and bedtime in YORK, PA. Being hungry we tried out the Pritikin ER method at Subway:,scoop out the bread from a whole wheat sub roll, toast it and fill with veggies. Yes! It was delicious. And warm. Mmmm.  Because we were chilly with an instance of rain we didn't get to really enjoy the views of the peaceful Pennsylvania countryside replete with rambling farmhouses and iconic Stone barns. Lots of horsedrawn Amish buggies ambled down the backcountry roads.  We did enjoy visiting Lil Mak and Popeye, hikers from the AT in 2008. Ron played ping pong and worked on a jigsaw puzzle.

19 May: Ron worked on Swedish Colonial Society FGS until 3:30AM.  Cynthia arose at 6:30.  Ron didn't get enough sleep last night.  92 degrees today. After breakfast we rode the bike to the archives with Becky and Amy following to give them a tour.  They went on to see Constitution Hall while we returned to finalize our packing  for tomorrow's departure to York, PA.  Ron drove two boxes to FedEx for shipping to Texas and to Jim's. Packing is nearly complete so we walked the mall, returned to work on SCS material. Once the sun was setting we walked outdoors; a goose, gander and six goslings made an delightful picture crossing the street to the park.  Ron is very tired with drooping eyes and zzzzzzzzz! Good night!

18 May: We are off to Gloria Dei Church to give presentations to the Swedish Colonial Society on the Craig Collection (Ron) and DNA (Cynthia) followed by dinner with friends.   Our session was well received.  Dinner at Scoogi's with Becky, Amy, Kim  and Ruth was lovely.

17 May:, 82 degrees with a real feel of 93 -  Gl├Ždlig Settende Mai, the Norwegian celebration equivalent to our Fourth of July with similar heat to accompany the festivities.  Congratulations to grandson Eric upon receiving a degree in construction engineering from Texas A&M University.   Eric's dad is proudly beaming from heaven above on this day; Jim suffered a fatal heart attack three years ago while hunting with Eric and friends.  Eric valiantly tried using CPR to save his father.  Eric and Cynthia's daughter Julie in the photo:

Congratulations to grandson Eric & daughter Julia

16 May early morning: A crane boom swung past our 6th floor hotel window creating a moment of panic for the one of the female persuasion as workers were being lifted to the roof for another day of roof repair.   The warm sunshine promised a pleasant ride to the post office, but we were in for a surprise when the largest box didn't fit into the saddlebags or the top case.  Undaunted, Ron got on the bike, Cynthia handed the box to Ron to hold while she got on; Ron then passed the box to her to hold which was a bit unnerving traveling through city streets to Chestnut Hill.  The packages were successfully shipped.  We thoroughly enjoyed the day at the Lutheran Seminary and lunch at McMenamins with John P., the archivist; Jim Z. Joined us for dinner at Scoogi's.  Thanks to Janina B. For the photo:

Da happy Smooches at the awards banquet

15 May: Have a happy day! Hooray for today!  Work on the Family Group Sheet packages consumes Ron along with preparation for Thursday's presentation to the Swedish Colonial Society council on the Craig Collection.  We managed a terrific walk to the mall for lunch at Whole Foods and a walk on the side road of the hotel.  After the latest family group Sheet order (hundreds of pages) was completed we walked the 7 floors and stairs of the hotel.

14 May: Happy Mother's Day to all of the mothers in your lives.  Rain is forecast until evening but hadn't arrived by four PM allowing us to swiftly cross to the mall for our walkathon.  By the time we returned the sky was darkening with threatening clouds.  We enjoyed salmon and steamed veggies for dinner.  Sad news arrived of an MIT alum's passing last year.

Eating Pritiken
13 May: Six years and a day!  We joyfully agree we are the best thing to happen to each other. Cynthia liked one of Ron's cards that said, "I know God loves me (Ron) because God gave me you(Smooch Smooch)."  The rain prevented venturing forth until four PM; after walking 7 hotel halls and up and down the exit stairs, we braved a light mist to complete four miles by walking the mall and eat lunch at Whole Foods fresh veggie bar. See photo.  Interesting to watch so many weird people.  Ron is helping nephew Eric with his website while Cynthia is assisting DNA   participants.

12 May: Hooray for the 12th of May!!!!! This is the day!!!!! Ron turned a very young 70,  a joyful youth he remains at heart.  This is the day to celebrate six years of wedded bliss.  Ron surprised his bride with-not one-but three-bouquets and four happy, happy cards to make the girlie cry.

Happy Mrs. Beatty

11May: Surprise! Yes, we were surprised.  Unsuspecting, we met Sally B. And her son Mark at their home in Berwyn, PA for a 45 minute drive to River Wood, NJ for lunch with Rambo cousin Herb and his lovely wife Zofia who surprised us with a 70th birthday party for Ron and an anniversary party complete with balloons and cake. Yes: we ate a piece of white cake with frosting but did not take the remainder home. WooHoo!  Cynthia learned how to post photos on the IPad by emailing them to the blog.
Eternally Young At Heart

Celebrating Six Years of Joy
Celebrating "70" Young Years

Card by Sally B. Says it All!  
10 May:  Plymouth Meeting, Pennsylvania (click here), it is Wednesday all day, moving towards our 6th annabir-sary on Friday.  The hotel did not have oatmeal this morning and the omelets were over-oily, so Cynthia prepared some quick oats in the microwave and topped it with blueberries and raspberries.  Today's plan is big time exercise.  We opted for veggie plates for lunch at the hotel, and they did a good job for us; the vegan waitress was impressed and curious.  Tonight we Uber to Rittenhouse Square (click here) for dinner with Ron's MIT colleague Eric C., who is preparing cod for our dinner.  (Uber because Cynthia is too much over-cold to ride the motorcycle in this unusually cool PA springtime.) The dinner and view of sunset from Eric's penthouse was lovely.  The penthouse formerly belonged to Katharine Hepburn. Imagine the shock discovering a dead cell phone battery just when we tried to call a Uber to pick us up. Cynthia frantically tried downloading the Uber app to her IPad that did not have much battery life left either when Ron woke up to her need for a cord. Voila! The MAC case had a spare. We plugged the cord into the USB on the Mac allowing the IPhone to charge before ordering the Uber.

9 May: The outdoor temp was 43 BrrrrrrFreeeeezinnng degrees as we boarded the bike to ride to the Lutheran Seminary.  Despite the chill, the ride was surprisingly warm with blue skies, warm sunshine, and Cynthia's Gerbings heated outfit (that plugs into the bike's electrical system like an electric blanket).  Decades-old azaleas (click here) along our route are nearly peak brilliance and several other flowering bushes provide counterpoint.  John T. arrived to work with Ron on his Forefather data entry project (it is going well); they gave Cynthia a ride to the hair salon in Chestnut Hill; she walked the 2 miles back to the seminary and to McMenamins for lunch with the guys.  Dinner at Scoogis (click here) with Jim Z. and John P. was a treat as always.

8 May:  Recoup Recoup Recoup!  We slept!  We worked!  We walked the mall twice, Ron hit the fitness center elliptical machine for thirty minutes, then free weights, and we both did our stretches.  Cynthia turned blue while swimming in the icy hotel pool for 30 minutes.  Ron met a new best buddy at the fitness center, Ryan from Canada.

Hmm, we didn't drink enough to make the camera blurry
7 May, Sunday:  Our friend Jean C. came for lunch and spent the afternoon with us at the hotel restaurant, a very pleasant, relaxed afternoon of conversation.  We discovered just how chilly 50 degrees could be by walking to Plymouth Mall in anticipation of a long walk, but the mall offered no respite from the cold and no walk because the doors were locked - at 6:30 pm Sunday.  We returned to the fitness center at the hotel for a short run on the machines.

6 May: The e-VILe sistah Carol and triathaloner, marathoner bro Dean and his wife Janina returned home leaving us with wonderful memories. We are working furiously at our projects and fitness routines.  Cynthia's is frustrated with posting blog photos.  Blogsy is dead, so neither the iPhone nor the iPad work; the only way to post pictures to the blog (yes, this blog) is using the MacBook or similar computer.

5 May:  The weather is very chilly.  Ron received his award from The Swedish Council of America Awards Dinner this evening.  Brother Dean and wife Janina from Lewes, DE, Sistah Carol from Illinois, and MIT alum Eric Clemons from Philly arrived to attend the celebration honoring Ron for a national achievement award at the Union League downtown Philadelphia (click here).  Cynthia arranged a ride with Uber, and it was super convenient and easy to get all five of us downtown at rush hour.  The Union League is indeed a swanky place, formerly an exclusive men's club, now merely exclusive.  Let's hear it big for photos on the blog!  Wow!  Ron looks mighty fine!

Brother Dean looks too young
staged photo op

Smiley Smooch
Kim & Ron with awards.  Thanks.

4 May:  New Sweden (click here) (Philadelphia/Plymouth Meeting): We slept until 8:00.  Ron rode to the seminary to retrieve the two boxes of clothes Cynthia shipped for tomorrow night's Awards Dinner, bringing Jim Z. some Mountain Dew and Kettle Chips.  Ron and Kim-Eric had a Hefeweisen (click here) and salad at McMenamins (click here). Cynthia spent the morning exercising.  Ron is making good progress on the packages of family group sheets for the SCS.  After dinner at the hotel, we walked to, through and around the mall to get our steps.  Cynthia unpacked and pressed the dress clothes shipped from Texas two months ago.  Spring has blossomed with cherry, apple trees putting forth; the brilliant colored azalea bushes are magnificent.

3 May:  Brrrrr 60 degrees.  The ride to Philly will be cold.  Cynthia seems to be sleeping well again, two nights in a row; wonderful and Thank God !!  Jim & Joni are off to work, so Ron is commencing to figure out the route to New Sweden and our next hotel at Plymouth Meeting, God willing.  Jim recommends the Conowingo dam as awesome; nope, I like lessor road 372 to cross the Susquehanna much further north.  Packing comes next, oops, I hear Cynthia rustling around; time for breakfast first.  Packing & preparing at 9:24 after oatmeal w/ berries for breakfast. Thanks again to Jim & Joni for wonderful hospitality, friendship, and great food (in tune with our dietary restrictions).  Hey, Ron added links to several places in late April; look for (click here).

2 May:  Mount Airy, MD awakening from a deep, long sleep.  Oh, how lovely.  We are enjoying a cool, but sunny day.  After breakfast at IHop we walked 4 miles over hill and overdale returning for oatmeal lunch with black beans for dessert.   As we coasted down Jim's driveway, his resident wild goose (gander) flew alongside us within 5 feet, a spectacular viewing.  His female consort is nesting by the lake.  Among others, a red winged blackbird, a red headed woodpecker, and a female cardinal are taking turns at the bird feeder outside the kitchen window.  (Ron is partial to the little Downey woodpeckers and one of the BRIGHT yellow songbirds.  The unusual one was the ruby grosbeak (click here).)  Since Cynthia is sleeping better, Ron has completed two packages of family group sheets for the Swedish Colonial Society - only 6 more to do.  We walked off down Old West Falls Road all the way to t'other end and back, about 4 pastoral miles round trip, a nice, pleasant, pretty walk on a cool, clear day.  Jim arrived home for another nap whilst Ron was on the deck assembling the Peter Jones package.  Joni remembered to call "20 minutes out" from the end of the driveway, Jim prepared a huge pile of steamed veggies for dinner, and we all participated in an animated discussion of the political travails our press is inflicting on the unwary within the population.

1 May:  Happy May Day! May! Remember making May baskets?  We awoke to May Day in the Comfort Inn in Waynesboro, Virginia.  After breakfast we will be off to Mount Airy, MD to see Jim and Joni.  (Cynthia expects to arrive about 3:30 PM; she has yet to learn that her iPhone projections do not correlate well with actual Ron routes.)  Storms with hail and heavy wind were forecast for late afternoon, but not a raindrop fell on us.  Virginia, West Virginia and Maryland are breathtakingly beautiful on a pretty spring day.  We nearly froze riding the motorcycle on the Blue Ridge Parkway at 3,000+ feet elevation in foggy conditions; the trees are still bare of leaves at that elevation.  It was fun to clearly see a bear cub close to the road - from a distance of perhaps 30 feet.  We were puzzled by two cars in the driveway and a dark, seemingly empty, open house, but the puzzlement ended an hour later when Jim emerged from his afternoon nap.  Without a thyroid, his energy flags easily after noon, and a nap is necessary.  Joni arrived home after five, and we all repaired to rest shortly after a wonderful home made dinner of steamed veggies and grilled chicken.  Ron, on the other hand, stayed up late, late, late since Cynthia was sleeping VERY soundly.  He was able to complete the Hans Hanson preliminary package for the SCS and gathered together most of the pages needed for the Peter Jones pp by the time of Cynthia's first nocturnal powder room visit around 2 am.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

April Sun Brings Florida Fun

30 Apr, Sunday:  My goodness, where does the time go?  Seems like just yesterday April was beginning, now it is almost over !!  But the fun just doesn't end, thank God.  We slept well but are still a bit tired.  The big decision was whether to stay another night or ride north to visit Jim & Joni, providing that Jim's thyroid-deprevitation headache has diminished.  We agreed to stay another night in Waynesboro allowing time to catch up on SCS family group sheet packages and take a rest from hiking. After Ron worked seriously on SCS packages and nephew Eric's RPM coins (click here)
web site, we walked to Ruby Tuesdays for an early dinner.  During our after dinner stroll, we happened upon a Sweet Frog Frozen Yogurt shop (click here) with 11 flavors of no sugar added, fat free yogurt with low sodium.  Mmmmmmmmm!  Not quite Pritikin perfect (click here), but good enough for us !!

29 Apr:  In Staunton, VA we enjoyed breakfast and delightful conversation with Cynthia's friend Suzanne at the historic Stonewall Jackson Hotel (click here).  Ron mended everything green, a fanny pack and his beloved, faded Giant's Causeway tee shirt (from Northern Ireland)(click here), while the ladies chatted.  Lunch at Ruby Tuesday brought Cynthia the devastating news the famous Ruby croutons do not match the on-line nutritional information; they are high in sodium and fat, henceforth verboten.  We now know where Ruby Tuesdays has hidden relevant nutritional information on their web site.  Today's hike was 5 miles from Beagle Gap (click here) northward on the Appalachian Trail.  We are so encouraged that our hiking capabilities have not diminished so greatly; on the other hand, we huffed and puffed uphill.  Spring foliage is still in the early stages here, putting forth cherry blossoms and poison ivy leaflets.  We met about a dozen thru-hikers who started at Springer Mountain, Georgia on the trail; we only learned the names of two, Doc and Crazy Tree.  Crazy Tree filmed us for YouTube, but hasn't posted our photo yet (click here).  Cynthia was astounded to see one woman running on the trail.  Our bodies are weary tonight and we retired early.

28 Apr:  Virginia is for lovers.  Lynchburg in the morning, Waynesboro shortly after noon, 70 miles between the two.  Walking and workout was the morning plan.  After visiting with innkeeper Charlotte and checking in, we ate lunch at a nearby Ruby Tuesday and headed out for a great day hike on the AT.  We met our first through-hiker of the year: Tumbleweed, a young girl out hiking alone today.  We marveled at reaching the ridge without stopping.  Breathing hard yes; 5 miles total walking today for a 10,000 step FitBit buzz.

27 Apr:  On the road again!  Like a band of gypsies we go down the highway
We're the best of friends
Insisting that the world keep turning our way
And our way
Is on the road again
Just can't wait to get on the road again- 

Hi to Wynn, here is our route from Irmo, SC: I-26 south to I-20 east to I-77 north to Charlotte, NC to I-85 northeast to Greensboro, NC and finally old US 29 (a good four lane) to Lynchburg, VA - gorgeous flowers in the medians on I-85 in North Carolina (click here); Cynthia's favorites were the rosy red ones.  The weather is cloudy and cool enough for us to put on jackets at the first stop.  The ride through Rockingham and Caswell Counties was unexpected and meMorable since Cynthia's ancestors hail from there.  Ron had picked "affordable luxury" at the Kirkley Hotel in Lynchburg.  It is pleasantly unique, not a chain, and has a good chef and comfortable rooms.  Luxury it was NOT; the rooms were well appointed except that there was no bar refrigerator, no coffee maker, and most surprising, no bathroom mirror.  The restaurant was semi elegant with a horse trough planter, but the menu was only typical bar offerings, certainly not fine dining.  On the other hand, the chef aimed to please and did well with what he had available.  We would enjoy staying there again.  We walked from the hotel downhill in the evening and saw a cute little skunk foraging. 

Read more:  Willie Nelson - On The Road Again Lyrics | MetroLyrics Sing it Willie!

26 Apr: Ron walked while Cynthia worked out at the hotel.  The concrete walk with hills and speedy guys in Columbia has returned Cynthia's lower back improvements into ugly back pain again.  Cynthia read "The Captivity of the Oatman Girls" written by the survivor in the mid 19th  century after being freed from captivity by American Indians.   Dinner with our friends at 5:30 PM. Now we pack for an early morning 300 mile ride on back roads to Lynchburg, VA for an overnight.  How frustrating to not have access to Google photos on the IPad to upload to this blog.  GRRR!

25 Apr: A Misty Morning; the walk was called off.  Ron's morning mission was accomplished with email to Dr. Gould and the Pritikin Center.  Cynthia lunched at Ruby Tuesdays and shopped for earrings.  Dinner tonight is once again at the favorite salad bar.   Thankful. Yes, we are ever so thankful.

24 Apr:  Rain prevented a usual walk with the guys but offered a lovely, lazy morning instead.  My goodness, April fun just begun, and now its 6 days to May.   It was dry enough we walked to Ruby Tuesdays but Dick gave us a ride home because the rain she came.  Tom and Cheryl joined the gang of 7 for a most entertaining evening.  Thurs., weather permitting, the road beckons.  Ron scheduled the route from Columbia, SC to our favorite-falling-in-love city: Staunton, VA, arriving Friday.

23 Apr: Ron joined the Irmo, SC friends at their favorite Sunday-Go-To-Breakfast at Lizards Thicket (click here) for fish n' grits made without salt, oil or sugar, of course! Cynthia slept the morning away and walked to a girlie-i-cue afternoon.  Ron, Dick and Clark helped Ron get the motorcycle tire replaced. Elizabeth showed us some lovely children's books with illustrations by artist Jerry Pinkney; she attended his gallery show.  Cynthia ordered 5 of the books for soon-to-be 3 year old granddaughter Fyn,  born on Ron's Birthday.

22 Apr: We are still tired! No walking on Sat. Or Sunday.  Ron edited Cynthia's DNA research report for her besides updating nephew Eric's coin website.

21 Apr: Another morning walk with friends; hey!  Yesterday's hills turned into mountains overnight.   Four miles turned us into hungry, ravenous exhausted wolves. After a trip to the super market we took a nap.   Cycle Gear has the new rear tire we need; Ron has to remove the tire and take it to the dealer on Sunday,  Cycle Gear can mount it, but they are not insured for the liability of removing or replacing the tire.  Another great dinner was enjoyed by all of the survivors.  

20 Apr, Thursday in Columbia, SC where the morning 4 mile fun walk begins even earlier than one of us wants to be awake.  We tossed down oatmeal, egg white veggie omelets and fruit arriving at Dick's by  7:50 AM for the neighborhood hard breathing test of our endurance.  We enjoyed the fragrance of lilacs walking to dinner, but walked around the cosmetic counters cutting through the mall.  Donna and Greg, Clark and Elizabeth and Dick joined us for a fun dinner; thanks to Elizabeth for the big bouquet of beautiful  red roses.

19 Apr: Jesup, GA to Columbia, SC was an easier ride than yesterday's and cooler, too. We so thoroughly enjoyed the Trowell B and B - Cynthia was wishing we had stayed another night.  Traveling north on highway 301 continued to highway 321 in South Carolina.  The bike's electrical system is acting up again and a screw found its way into the NEW rear tire causing a slow leak.  The small Denmark, SC town park was a fun place to stop and eat veggies and an apple.  Ron asked the maintainance fellow where to find the nearest restroom.  When the guy responded with the name of a restaurant blocks away, Ron asked, "Is the tree across the street hidden enough?"  "Yup, I believe so!"   Nice small town!   Immediately upon arrival, we walked a mile to our favorite Ruby Tuesday's to stuff our stomachs at the salad bar.  The walk back to the hotel was slower because we could hardly move necessitating a nap!!

18 Apr: Sebring, FL to Jesup, GA was a 7.5 hour ride on highway 27 North to highway 301 North that included a stop with last minute recycling, a food market, gas stations, missing turns, being 13 miles from Strake, FL and a great restaurant when traffic cane to a standstill because if an accident.  Turning across the median we backtracked to take highway 26 east through Melrose and then north to once again intersect 301 exactly 13 miles north of Strake and a very nice cafe.   The good restaurants in Jesup are closed tonight so we hoofed it to Piggly Wiggly for veggies.  Ron used his pacemaker mobile appliance to send an EKG report to the electrophysiologist in Houston.  Amazing.  We are ensconced in the Lovely Trowell Victorian B and B for one night.

17 Apr: Sebring, FL, Inn on the Lake and Chicano's Restaurant are excellent choices for a couple of days rest from two week non stop events.  The restaurant prepared our oatmeal and egg white veggie omelets with no salt, fat, or sugar;  we dined enjoying a Great Blue heron, glimpses of an alligator and a couple of turtles in the lake. Our morning cardio was hoofing an hour walk along the golf course. Recycle Ron found a recycling center.

16 Apr, Sun: Alleluia!  He is risen!! Happy Easter!  Our sunrise service is a last blood draw before departure.  The guests and staff provided the greatest intellectual stimulation since MIT.   After breakfast is cardio, pack the bags and have Easter brunch before departing for a lake view BandB at Sebring, FL for 2 days on highway 27 north.

15 Apr, Sat: Another early morning.   Cynthia had her Fitbit buzz before noon.

14 Apr, Friday ... We are off to sugar checks, breakfast, cardio, lectures.  Eating morning oatmeal is a significant change for Cynthia. It is made combining with various other 100% whole grains like quinoa and fruits.   But it has 3 grams of fat so Ron gets a very small amount. There are some interesting people attending; one woman is well over 6'tall, widow of a 9-11 banker in the World Trade Center - who showed us his credit card. It was the only piece of him discovered.  Several women are entrepreneurs with products on a global scale. Several people said we are a cute couple.

13 Apr: And the early mornings rush on to late bedtimes.  Cynthia's total cholesterol (good numbers anyway) dropped 40 points in one week. Ron's went from 130 to 112.  Oh my goodness.   The cooking class was marvelous and the food delicious.  The salmon was prepared without any oil other than that coming from the salmon.  The glaze was a cup of tangerine juice with a bit of lemon juice. Tangerine juice was the dressing for the fennel salad.  And the parfait was banana, fatfree sour cream, ginger root juice and vanilla. Mmmmmmm.  We listened to the lecture on salt as the root cause of hypertension again.  Wow!

12 Apr: The days are racing by filled with energizing lectures, cardio, doctor appointments.  Kimberly, the nutritionist wants Cynthia to do a sugar blood draw 2x day for the remainder of our stay.  The program is so fine.

11 Apr. Tuesday: blood draws, cardio, stretch core, Ron has a follow up from back therapist.

10 Apr.Mon: Cynthia has an 8:30 personal trainer appointment with a 10:00 medical appointment. The lectures on atherosclerosis are excellent.

9 Apr, Sun: The days are so filled with activity we fall into bed with no time for our computer work!  Newly discovered Rambo cousin David L. lost 9 pounds this week.  Ron lost several pounds. Cynthia gained half a pound. The plant based program is proven to eliminate meds for hypertension, diabetes in three weeks and reverse coronary artery disease (which is why we are here).  The brunch was magnificent, especially the veggie pancakes.  We waddled to the room.  Last week's guests departed and new ones arrived.  Ron did yoga, we both did cardio intervals, core strength and stretch, plus two great walks with 13, 000 steps, so we are feeling mighty fine. No apparent muscle soreness.   We may return in November.

8 Apr, Sat: 15,000 steps on the Fitbit.

7 Apr, Fri: Great lecture today on metabolic syndrome.

6 Apr: Morning arrived too early because Cynthia had a metabolism test at the crack of dawn.  Eating is our favorite activity at the Pritikin Center, It is really popular!   We are encouraged to eat, eat and eat.  We are learning never trust the front labels of packaging: marketing scams call foods100% healthy, natural, or ORGANIC!  Walmart is the largest buyer of organic foods.   Instead, read the ingredients for no fat, sugar or preservatives in the first 3-5 ingredients. Salt is corrosive to arteries causing arteries to stiffen.  Oatmeal, fruit and egg whites in the mornings, lots of raw and cooked veggies before more calorie dense food like starchy veggies and  2 snacks a day.  Fish, chicken or turkey 3x week. Big changes for our eating plans.  Interesting to hear the stories of guests who left insulin and blood pressure meds free after 3 weeks.

5 Apr: our days are filled with exercise, lectures, med appointments and EATING.  Ron was diagnosed with sleep apnea.

4 Apr: Another day with medical appointments, lectures, and eating. The back seminar was excellent. Ron learned why he has a back issue and how to remedy it.  Dr. Frank recommended an orthopod  that does a new minimally invasive knee surgery allowing tennis and basketball with five day down time. The sports med Dr. Frank spent 2 hours evaluating Cynthia's spine, hips, knees, how she walks, etc., with  exercise recommendations for corrections tailored for our travel.  We enjoyed the relationship seminar; the psychologist Caron said needed: warm relationships,, being vulnerable and validating, criticism destroys.  The food is very low fat to zero fat, high fiber, meaning mainly vegetables, fruits but protein, too.  Tonight's baked squash with quinoa was excellent, so was the amaretto parfait. We are full.  Ron is outfitted for sleep apnea testing tonight.

3 Apr: Pritikin Longevity Center, Doral, FL.  After fasting through the night we had blood drawn, vitals taken, ate a lovely breakfast of egg white vegetable omelets, fruit and fake coffee.  The yoga class was terrific. The rest of the day is interspersed with medical doctors and cardio. And food. They feed us a lot.  We are amazed that our schedule is so busy.

2 Apr: On our way rejoicing as we forward go!  Packing is nearly completed.  After a stop at FedEx,  we had time for a walk to Smoothie King to drink lunch before venturing forth to the Pritikin Center. Our arrival was at 4:00 promptly.  Staff gave us a tour followed by medical check of vitals.  We have both shrunk.  Ron is now 6'1/2". There are three golf courses at this hotel/resort and several swimming pools.

1 Apr: Florida's sun is fine for fools.  After a long night's sleep into day,  filling our stomachs with egg white veggie omelets,  we hit the shady side of the sidewalks to Runners Depot to buy Ron a new pair of Hoka One One's, but the wide toe box he needs is not in stock.  Onwards, we ventured to Smoothie King to drink lunch befire returning to our room for Ron to do his mending.  Cynthia located the right  Hoka style and Ron's size online to purchase with arrival due Wednesday - no shipping costs.  No fooling.  Dinner at Nanking on the canal was entertaining watching the bridge open for tall ships to pass through.  It was fun to see a  huge cruise ship maneuvering into the channel; we wondered if granddaughter Lauren was onboard; she is returning from a nine day cruise.  We won't see her because she is being transferred directly to the airport.  Our entertainment is so cheap: we rode the elevators to the top floor of the empty convention center parking garage to watch the sunset and finished Fitbit steps exploring the views of the channels from on high.   Surprisingly, the convention center was still open auctioning luxury old cars; we ohhhhed and awed at cars selling for hundreds of thousands of dollars.  Good news: our Hawaii property has a buyer!