Saturday 29 March 2008

We See Some Improvement!

Today was a pretty good day for 'the patient'. He got the sewer hose hooked back up again from unhooking it so the RV Doctor could get at the kitchen slide this week and then we dumped the tanks. Then around noon he decided he wanted me to show him where the flowering cactus is in the desert so against my better judgement I took him there. He's also saying he's hungry and all this after only 2 pills of the antifungal drug. Sure hope he keeps improving so we can get going on our drive back home. I've probably rested more today than he has!

This is a photo of Gordon in the desert this morning.

The desert is covered with white wildflowers.

Yesterday morning when I was out walking I saw this Gambel's quail on the back of one of the chairs in the desert.

Yesterday on our way home from Emergency I took a photo of the "A" on the top of "A" Mountain. This is where Sentinel Peak is. We've been up there a couple of times. There is a lovely view of the city and a few trails for hiking.

I did do my morning walk although I didn't have as much enthusiasm as I usually do for it. Whether it's knowing that the desert can make you sick or I was just tired, I'm not sure.

The rest of the day I was on the computer, reading or sleeping. Not a very exciting day except for the improvement in Gordon's health.

Gordon was going to cook some burgers on the barbecue tonight but it was too windy so we went in to Wendy's instead. On our way back we drove through Tucson Mountain Park for a bit looking for critters but all we saw was a roadrunner on our way to Wendy's.

Interesting day, wasn't it?

Friday 28 March 2008

A Gordon Update - The Good News and the Bad News

This morning we were at St. Mary's Hospital Emergency at 9:00 a.m. We didn't have to sit too long in the waiting room this time. All we wanted was a prescription for a different antibiotic. While we were there the results of his blood test came back and he does indeed have Valley Fever induced pneumonia. So instead of getting a new prescription for an antibiotic he got a prescription for an antifungal medication along with a stomach medication as the antifungal apparently affects the stomach.

The doctor that we saw on Monday night came in at 11:00 a.m. and we were still talking to other doctors and nurses at that time so he got to see Gordon again. He also felt that Gordon should not drive home and recommended that he fly so we have a letter to that effect just in case.

We brought Gordon back to the RV and I went out to Walmart to get the prescriptions filled. When I came back I had to go to the office and pay for another week here at Diamond J RV Park. While I was gone, Joy had stuck a message to the door wondering how Gordon was. She was just leaving to go out when I was coming back from the office so I talked to her and then stopped at Ellie and Jim's and talked to Ellie. Back at the RV I called the travel medical insurance to update them. The lady I spoke to was the same one I talked to last night about the allergic reaction to the prescription. She told me that there is $2000 coverage for the RV to be moved back to our home base if Gordon can't drive so we're going to wait and see how he is in a week or possibly two. We're hoping that he'll be able to drive it himself.

That's our today in a nutshell!

Thursday 27 March 2008

A Low Key Day and a Barbecue

First of all I want to thank all the people on rv-dreams chat for their prayers and good wishes for Gordon's speedy recovery. I especially want to thank Ellie and Jim for being there for us and for offering to be of assistance to us in any way. We appreciate it more than words can say.

Today we spent a quiet day. Jim stopped by this morning to see if we needed anything and Ellie came over around noon to invite me over for a barbecue.

I spent the day reading and making a few bracelets.

Around 4:15 p.m. or so I went over as I saw Jim slaving away at the barbecue and sat outside and talked with them and took this photo of Jasmine and Mr. Bo Jangles. Ellie's sister, her husband and cousin arrived shortly after and we had a wonderful dinner of chicken, broccoli, fruit salad with apple pie and cool whip for desert. It's the best meal I've had in a while as we've only been eating salad since Gordon hasn't felt like eating much. I even got a care package to bring home to Gordon.

Gordon had a pretty good day today but has a definite reaction to the antibiotic that he's taken so he called his daughter who is a pharmacist although staying at home being a Mom right now and she didn't think he should continue taking it so I called the pharmacy who suggested I call the ER Doctor. The doctor who saw Gordon on Monday night wasn't on duty so I was told he would have to come in or else have the pharmacy call them. So I called the pharmacy again and they are to call Emergency and call me back so that's what I'm waiting for right now. Nothing's easy!


The pharmacy called back and they couldn't get anyone to authorize another prescription at the hospital, the hospital wants us to go back in.

So I called the insurance and she said to go ahead to the hospital but to let them know if they want to do more tests. She also gave me some walk in clinic information in the area.

I talked to Gordon about it and he had already taken his antihistamine cough syrup and the rash has gone again so we're going to wait till tomorrow to do anything.

Why is this so difficult? All we want is a replacement prescription that won't make him break out in a rash!

Wednesday 26 March 2008

A Day in the Life.....

I went on my walk this morning but as I was passing a dead prickly pear I heard some rustling so I think there might be a snake living in there. Either that or some other little animal. Anyway, I made sure I skirted well around it and made lots of noise.

I saw this flowering cactus in the desert this morning. It was the only one!

JoAnn, Doug and Fillmore were leaving this morning so I caught them just as they were about to leave. JoAnn was actually walking down to say goodbye as I was walking up to see them. They are headed to the Bisbee area.

By the way here's the hook that RV Doctor put in the wall to hold the top of the stove up when I'm cooking.

This morning we went to Camping World to see if we could get a part for the stove that we needed as well as the new motor for the bathroom fan but they didn't have the stove part nor did they have the fan. Ours is made by Ventline. We got the stove part at Beaudry RV but still haven't found the fan and since Gordon didn't want to be out too long we came home with a brief stop at Taco Bell so Gordon could get his Southwest Steak Bowl. He said he wanted to do something 'normal' today.

This afternoon both of us had naps. Gordon slept for most of the afternoon. When I got up I went to visit our neighbor, Joy who makes beautiful necklaces. Here are some samples of her work. I watched her make part of a new one and she showed me how she makes each module and also the catch for the necklace. She really needs to sell them. They are so beautiful!

This is Joy wearing one of her necklaces.

Tonight Gordon told me that he hasn't been feeling well since he had his nap this afternoon and his fever is up but he doesn't feel like going to Emergency and sitting forever in the waiting room so if we have to go we'll go after midnight when most people have cleared out. When we left at 4 a.m. there wasn't anyone there.

Another night on the rv-dreams chatroom.

Tuesday 25 March 2008

Not What We Signed On For!

One of the things we dread as fulltimers being from out of the country is illness. As you know Gordon hasn't been feeling well for the last couple of weeks and last night his temperature was up and he had chills so we decided to go to Emergency. We spent almost four hours waiting in the waiting room in chairs not designed for people who are ill. He finally got a bed in Emergency about 10:30 p.m. where after blood work, a chest x-ray and a CT scan of the chest he was diagnosed with pneumonia of unknown origin. We arrived home around 4:00 a.m.

When we went to the walk in clinic last week he was given antibiotics which apparently should have cleared up pneumonia but it did not and he kept getting worse. They gave him three heavy doses of an inhaler last night in the hospital and prescribed an inhaler for him as well as another round of antibiotics of a different type. They also did blood work to determine if he might have Valley Fever. This test takes about a week to come back. If he does have Valley Fever, antibiotics will not help and he will have to go on an antifungal drug but they won't give him the antifungal drug until the diagnosis is positive. So here we are in Tucson waiting for the results and for him to recover sufficiently to drive back home.

If he has not recovered sufficiently as determined by the doctor to make the long drive (about 2500 miles) to Ontario, our travel medical insurance will look after returning the RV to our home province. We're cutting our time really short to be able to get back especially if he doesn't recover quickly.

I have been asked why I don't drive the rig. I have a couple of answers to that. One, I'm not that comfortable driving the truck having always been used to driving a Saturn sport coupe and two, I don't need the stress with the health problems that I have personally.

When we began this lifestyle we had decided that if we started having health problems we would discontinue our life on wheels and return to the stix and brix house. Is this the time? At this point we're keeping our options open.

We had booked an appointment with the RV Doctor (mobile RV repair) to come today as our kitchen slide has been very noisy when going in and out for the last few months. He fixed that in short order and also showed us how to raise the top of the stove. It's so easy when you know how! I've also had a problem with the stove top cover not sitting back far enough so that when you have pots on the back burners they get pushed ahead which makes for ineffective cooking so he hooked up a little hook thing to keep the top in the upright position. Again so easy! He also looked at our bathroom fan motor and said that if we go and buy it, he'll come and install it and make the necessary adaptations so it will fit so it's another trip to Camping World tomorrow!

Other than feeling exhausted today from getting about 4 hours of sleep, we're relieved first of all to have a diagnosis for Gordon and second of all to have the RV problems fixed.

Thanks to all of you who have expressed concern and inquired about Gordon's health. We really appreciate it!

Monday 24 March 2008

Walking and Visiting

It was already 50F (10C) at 7:40 a.m. when I started out on my walk. There was quite a strong breeze blowing enough so that my hat didn't want to stay on my head! I had another beautiful walk taking lots of photos so at least I have memories in photos for when we leave here.

After breakfast I went into Tucson. I had a strange purchase considering today was to be 85F (29C). I decided to buy a warming throw as I had seen them at Walgreens. It may be warm here but our return through the mid-west and into Ontario will be very cold for at least a month and possibly more before it starts to warm up again. I'm really not looking forward to it. I also stopped at Walmart and got some groceries.

I got back to the RV shortly after lunch and was unpacking groceries when JoAnn came to the door and told me that a 'leftover lunch' was being put together at Ellie's as they had gone into Tucson and picked up Froggi Donna and brought her back to Ellie & Jim's. Froggi Donna is a solo RVer whose blog is called 'From the Lilypad' the Lilypad being her 26 ft Class C. I have been reading Donna's blog for quite a while now so I was glad to finally meet her. There were a lot of people there as Ellie's sister and her husband and her cousin were there as well as JoAnn and Doug. Gordon still isn't up to par so I didn't stay long.

I'm afraid I didn't get very good photos today. This one is of Donna, Ellie's cousin, Berta and JoAnn with her back to the camera.

The rest of the afternoon was spent sorting out the beads that I've bought over the past few weeks and then continuing reading my book.

Sunday 23 March 2008

Easter Sunday and Other Stuff

Happy Easter everyone!

Today was another beautiful sunny hot day with a nice little breeze. Thank goodness for the breeze or it would have been really hot at 85F (29C).

I had another beautiful desert walk this morning. I was walking along enjoying communing with nature and missed my trail so had to backtrack and there was no Easter bunny on the trail this morning handing out Easter eggs! Bummer!

More wildflowers

This morning I got my hair colored. I was beginning to feel like the old joke - she had such pretty blonde hair, too bad she dyed the roots black! It's darker again almost like it was when we first arrived in the U.S. in November last year. It's called medium ash blonde but always turns out dark on me for the first couple of weeks till some of it gets washed out. I like it darker for a change.

I sat outside and read the book that JoAnn brought to me the other day. It was a bit hard to get into but quite enjoyable after the first couple of chapters. It's basically the story of a middle-aged woman and the ins and outs of her life when her husband leaves her for a younger woman.It's called 'Revenge of the Middle-Aged Woman' by Elizabeth Buchan who is a British writer.

Golden Gate Mountain framed by two palo verde trees.

This afternoon I changed the bed and put on those wonderful hand-me down sheets that I got this week from Ellie so I'm looking forward to sleeping on Egyptian cotton sheets tonight! Then since I decided no one but me would be silly enough to do laundry on Easter Sunday headed over to the laundry which was indeed, empty. Another lady came in later. While I was doing laundry I was sitting on the front verandah of the office reading my book when Ellie, her sister and her cousin stopped by so I got to meet them. They had been walking in the desert with Jasmine and Mr. Bo Jangles, Ellie's two miniature schnauzers.

I talked to my older sister this morning and the weather is cold but sunny in Toronto. I called my younger sister in Ottawa this afternoon and the weather there was also cold and sunny and the snow isn't melting due to it still being so cold. They're also expecting more snow on Tuesday. She says they still have eight foot snowbanks. Sure hope the campground in Kingston will be open and able to accommodate us! Margie & John have volunteered to let us park in their driveway but I'm not sure we'll fit especially with all the snow! I guess we'll cross that bridge when we come to it!

That about encompasses my day. Gordon is still not feeling the best so he rested most of the day.