As you may know, we recently ventured to Maine for the 65th International Airstream Rally and to explore Acadia National Park. We came back to North Carolina to take care of some much-needed truck repairs, go to a medical appointment, and take care of a few other things to get ready to head back out. It has been a busy few weeks! But we are now on our way to Minnesota for Carl to fulfill something on his bucket list – working the corn silage and sugar beet harvests!
The medical appointment was my first follow-up appointment post-chemotherapy. Discussions were had, my port was flushed, and blood was taken. The markers they look at in my bloodwork are in normal range, and I do not need any further treatment. YEAHHH!!! I have started Xgeva—a bone-strengthening injection that I will get at my follow-up appointments. These are usually $1500-2000 each, but my insurance is covering them. My doctor prefers I get the injections monthly, but our traveling schedule does not allow for that right now. My next follow-up appointment is scheduled for November. My hair is starting to grow back. My eyelashes are getting back to normal, eyebrows are coming in, and some peach fuzz adorns my head. I still see more scalp than hair, though, but that will change within the next couple of months.
As my healing journey continues, my task right now is to work on my mind. Every ache and twinge has me thinking that maybe something was missed, and the culprit has not yet been vanquished. But I know that overall I feel great, and I will keep doing all the good things—supplements, eating right, staying active, traveling, writing, and positive self-talk.
Carl was the DIY KING while we were back in NC these past couple of weeks. He replaced the back brakes on the truck, including one rotor and caliper. We also discovered that one of the truck batteries (it has two) was dying. Luckily, it was under warranty, and Carl got it replaced. Then he tore the engine apart to get to the root of an oil leak the engine was having the past month. He discovered that it was in the turbo pedestal in which one of the bolts had loosened. He hadn’t read about this in the online forums before, but after discovering it he unearthed many forum discussions where this is a problem.
There was one mishap … after tearing apart the engine, installing some new parts, putting back into place the old parts, and tightening everything up, Carl was briefly distracted (SQUIRREL! 🙂 ). He then turned on the truck (from inside the house it sounded great!) and was watching the oil gauge, which did not budge. He finally looked up and realized that oil was gushing (like a geyser!) out of the engine! It went everywhere—all over the engine, on the side of the garage, and in the grass. Needless to say, there was A LOT of colorful language, and the downside is that now we aren’t sure if any of the dripping oil is from the 7.5 quarts that gushed out or if the part he repaired is still leaking. What caused the gush? He forgot to tighten one of the plugs … Dang that squirrel! At this point, he is certain he repaired what was needed, but we still have some residual oil drips from the gusher… The upside: an oil change isn’t needed for awhile!
He also repaired the lawn mower – the head gasket had blown. And he replaced the heating element in the dryer, cleaned the coils on the A/C unit, and gave it a tune-up.
There were a couple of minor things in the Airstream Carl took care of while we were in NC. He switched out the porcelain flush toilet for our composting toilet, and he repaired a locking mechanism on the back access door of the Airstream. (We have been using the composting toilet for most of our full-timing experience, but we switched it out for the past couple of months because we would be in locations with full hookups.)
Of course, both the truck and the Airstream needed a good washing because oil from the truck oil leak had sprayed all over them as we drove down the road.
What did I do while Carl was scurrying around dealing with these projects? What any smart person would do – I stayed out of his way! Writing, research, reading, laundry, dishes, dinner, groceries, Netflix, etc. The other important stuff.
We are now on our way to a farm in Gary, Minnesota. More to come as this riveting journey unfolds!