Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween Hauntings

Halloween in my mother's neighborhood is quite an event every year. Many of the houses are decorated, and some even make their garages and yards into 'funhouses'. Costumed children, teenagers, adults and even pets come from all over South Daytona to go trick-or-treating, and to see what the homeowners have come up with to entertain and scare everyone.

We always make this night a family get-together, and 'Chucky' even joined in the Halloween fun, accented with a strobe light and scary music. It was lots of fun listening to comments about whether he was real or not, with many people taking great pains to detour around him.We had a good laugh when my brother commented that it would interesting if he got stopped by the police on the way home and they asked him to open his trunk....

Below are a few more pictures of the neighborhood decorations and festivities.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Happy Birthday Dave!

Today you are a star!

Tomorrow it's back to chores...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Flying High

We are here in Daytona after a quick 2 1/2 hour flight from Albany to Orlando. The world sure looks different from 40,000 feet above. Southwest Airlines arrived 25 minutes early, exclaiming that if we fly with them again and they are late, remember this day and it will all even out. Of course I'm sure our speedy trip had nothing to do with the fact that there were only 65 passengers with very little luggage on board this 737 jet. Ha!

What a shock we had when we walked outside and it was 90 degrees and humid (Yippee...I'm trading in my driving gloves for diving gloves!). We had to rent a car to travel I-4 east to Daytona, and this part of the trip is more dangerous than flying. Luckily traffic wasn't too bad this time.

Today we have been basking in the sun and heat with near record high temperatures. The spare parts shopping list for the boat is almost complete already, and we have started on my mother's 'to-do' list. The day wouldn't have been complete without a swim in Mom's pool. The water temp. is about 78 degrees, very refreshing, but of course we northerners are more used to the cool lake waters, so it's not so bad.

Dave is starting to get emails from sailing club members regarding sunfish sailing, so we will soon be back into the swing of things as soon as we reach Hope Town. Meanwhile, at least for the next few days, we will enjoy the hot sunny weather and save the rest of our chores for cooler temps later this week.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Set To Jet

It's a wrap! We are closed up, packed, and ready to fly south. It's time for a 'New Horizon'. First stop...sunny and warm Daytona, Florida.

Adios to all our friends here in the northeast! It's been a great summer and we look forward to doing it all again next year. Have a safe winter and we'll keep you posted with updates on this blog. Many thanks and stay tuned for more adventures of the Pahls.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Different Directions

We have put our winterization off as long as possible. This morning we woke up to find the birdbath was frozen over, so it’s definitely time to decommission everything but the house itself.

As we prepare to fly south, our 9 goldfish fly, I mean swim, north…three streets over. Actually they get netted and transported via truck to the Rulison’s house for the winter, where they live in heated comfort. Lucky fish! They used to live in a plastic baby’s bathtub in the cellar when Dave’s parents lived here.

Today, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs (along with all my other lawn ornaments) were cleaned and ‘put to bed’ until April….sounds kinky! Perhaps it’s like Toy Story and they all come alive when we leave. They have a nice rehabbed garden shed to party in all winter.

The yard is already going back to nature and the fallen leaves will be dealt with when we return. I did leave the birdbath out though. A few days ago we looked out to see a mother deer and two fawns drinking water from it. I wonder if they thought, “How convenient. I don’t even have to lean down!” The doe was also bumping my bird feeder with her nose, and trying to get the seeds out with her tongue. It was hilarious! We knew that if we moved and tried to get a picture of them, it would scare them off, so it was more fun to just watch. I have left the remainder of the birdseed in a pan on the ground. It will be a tossup as to who gets it first, the birds, chipmunks, squirrels, skunks, or deer.

It is great to walk around and see all the improvements we have made this past summer. There are still plenty more things that we want to do, and especially with a property like this, the list will be never ending. When we return though, I think we will be amazed to see again, all that we have accomplished in such a short amount of time. We sometimes forget every detail, and I’m sure we will say repeatedly, “I can’t believe we did that too!”

The motorcycle shop is now empty also, a once a year rare occurrence. Dave has everything organized and ready to dive right into repairs in the spring. For now though, we are both just ready to dive into the warm waters of Florida and The Bahamas.

Friday, October 15, 2010

One for the History Books

Dave lines his work benches with old newspapers. While working on a carburetor, he happened to glance down and saw an article with this headline: “Bush says better times lie ahead.” However, it also quoted our former president as saying, “We’ve got some problems on the horizon.” The date of this Daily Gazette article? September 4, 2001. One week before 9-11.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Holiday Weekend, Day 3

Columbus Day was a flurry of activity here on our Pashley Road Ranch. Chris, John and I patched cracks and sealed the 95ft. long shed roof with special fiber enhanced sealer. It was a struggle trying to keep the roof clear of the falling leaves, but other than that, the sun was out and the conditions were perfect for this project.

Meanwhile, while we were ‘glopping’ up the roof (and ourselves), Kevin, Walt, and Bob rearranged and moved motorcycles in the salvage yard to accommodate the bikes out front of the shop. This will clear out the covered area and make room for more acquisitions next year. Dave spent the day running back and forth between the shed and the shop, supervising and helping as much as possible. We kiddingly nicknamed him the “Roof Nazi”. Any Seinfeld fans will know exactly what I mean.

Amazingly we all finished at the same time. I went and got cleaned up, and had to throw away my old work clothes and shoes, which were now caked with silver sealer (I certainly am a messy painter). The guys still had lots of energy, so they completed the last step in the shed revitalization by cutting and installing more locust posts in the back, adding more support. It is so convenient to be able to go into our woods, pick out just the right tree, cut it down, drag it back to the shed with Hercules, and then measure and cut it for the proper size posts. As an added bonus, the huge locust tree they cut down was right in the way of the new oval flat track that Dave is making for the weekend motorcycle rides.

We certainly do appreciate everyone’s help with all our projects this year and cannot thank them enough!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Holiday Weekend, Day 2

We couldn’t have picked a nicer fall day to go on our annual venture up to the Jiminy Peak Alpine Slides in Hancock, Massachusetts on Sunday. It’s hard to believe that Dave and I were the only ones out of 7 riders that didn’t drive a motorcycle that day.Oh well, our PT Cruiser Convertible made a great chase vehicle, and we ended up storing everyone’s riding gear while we were there.

During the winter, Jiminy Peak is a ski resort, but during the summer months they also have all sorts of ways to have fun. They have bungee ‘hopping’, a huge swing, and an aerial adventure challenge.

Mountain bikers are also welcome and they bring their bicycles up the mountain on the back of the chairlifts, and then follow the bike trails back down.

Our favorite ride has always been the alpine slides. After a nice leisurely trip up in the double chair lift, we gather our carts and then race back down to the bottom.
The carts have a control handle in the middle. If you press it forward there are wheels that come down to make you go faster. If you pull it back, there are brakes that engage (of course WE never use them!).

Sara and Jim raced to the finish, after Jim went so fast he lost his hat and fell off his cart.Dave wasn’t far behind Sara.Last, but not least was Karl, who also flew off his cart.Both guys burnished and melted their clothes from sliding down the fiberglass track for a few feet.

For the last run of the day we decided to take the 6 person chair lift up to the top of the mountain. Up, up, and away we go!
You certainly would never believe that we go as fast as we do on the slides, by the looks of us in the above picture! We are racers in disguise!

The view from the top is spectacular. We arrived just in time to witness a man proposing to his girlfriend at the summit. I bet it was where they had met while skiing, and they will always remember this day since it was 10/10/10.

This chairlift docking station looks like aliens have landed!

Instead of taking the chairlift back down, we decided to go for a hike that ended back at the alpine slides. The trail led us past this pond and the resort’s huge wind generator.

Click on the picture and you will be able to read all about it.

Then it was time to grab another cart and zoom back down to the lodge as the sun was getting lower and lower.

What a fantastic day we all had. Good friends, good food, good competition, and lots of fun. We all agreed it was one of the best times we have ever had there.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Holiday Weekend, Day 1

Saturday was a monumental day for Dave. He competed in an observed motorcycle trials competition for the first time in over 30 years. Dave, Lisa Farmer, and Jim Ryan all had a fantastic time, but they were totally exhausted by the end of the day.

Trials competitions consist of several different sections and courses that offer different obstacles that the riders have to go over or through. Judges are standing by, observing and giving penalty points for any mistakes that are made. This means that the person with the least amount of points wins.

The types of bikes that are used are very unusual and have little if any seat, since the rider is standing on the footpegs most of the time.Lisa has a newer trials bike, but Jim and Dave rode their vintage Suzuki RL 250’s, which everyone there really liked ogling at..
In the end, Lisa came in 5th place, Dave was 6th, and Jim was 7th. Dave thought that was great, especially since he had beginner’s luck during the first two sections with a perfect score of zero. It was a bit of an eye opening experience when he realized that he, along with Jim and Lisa, are now in the senior class for riders age 50 and older! After completing the many physical challenges that this competition offered, he definitely felt humbled and a bit more senior-like. It hasn't deterred him at all though, and he is ready to make a practice area here on our property and get ready for next year's competition.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Holy Moly!

Literally! Well, I’m not too sure about the holy part, but I do know that several sinful words came out of my mouth when I saw what our lawn looked like. All the rain must have been conducive for grubs, which the moles then go after. I must have looked pretty funny stomping around the grass, trying to tamp down the tunnels. What happened to the cats that I saw hanging around hunting my chipmunks. Where were they when I actually needed them?

Now I can’t get “The Farmer in the Dell” song out of my head. The lyrics are a bit different and backwards though. The mole takes the grubs, the cat is supposed to take the mole, but I can’t find a cat, so I guess that leaves ME (the big cheese?) standing alone, or in this case…stomping!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Keep On Truckin'

Recently we went to the Antique Truck Show in Ballston Spa. It was a beautiful fall day and we had a great time looking at the trucks, cars, tractors, and antique engines. There were lots of vendors also, selling both new and used items. We ended up getting great deals at the end of the day on a slate welcome sign, an antique hanging scale, and best of all, a classic old traffic light. Dave has it installed and wired outside the motorcycle shop. It will light up green when he is open, red when he is closed, and amber/yellow when he is not in the shop but still somewhere on the property.

Below are just a few samples of the many trucks we saw.

Nice paint job!

This truck had an airplane engine on the back of it. Periodically the owner would start it up and it was LOUD. Dave saw this last year also, and while standing there staring at it, he realized that it just couldn't be true that the engine was running. When they shut it off, the end of it kept turning. It must have been a big goof with a recording playing. Hardly anyone knew the difference.

This poor old truck had a sign on it that said, make offer before it goes to the scrap yard tomorrow. I thought it looked like it belonged in the animated movie "Cars."

This company had a whole fleet of tanker trucks, from a horse drawn truck, to a present day model.

This antique truck used to deliver fuel to Pan Am airplanes, and the fuel was poured in by hand from the milk can type containers.

A beautiful old logging truck circa 1926.

There was a great turnout of both antique fire trucks and classic military vehicles.

At the end of the day we couldn't resist parking our 1939 Plymouth next to our neighbors Greg and Wendy's Mack trucks. These vehicles certainly live up to our new motto of "making Pashley Rd. a better place!"

Wednesday, October 6, 2010


The word ‘almost’ leaves much to the imagination...

The tree almost missed the shed.

It has almost stopped raining.

The leaves have almost changed color and started to fall, and it is almost time to start raking.

We almost had frost a few nights ago.

Finally, the grass has almost stopped growing, so we almost don’t have to mow any more this year.

We have almost closed up the house in Ticonderoga for the winter.

Dave has almost stopped working on motorcycles for the season. He has also almost retired (ha!).

We have almost completed our projects for the year.

We are almost totally organized and ready to start packing for the Bahamas.

We are almost ready for a New Horizon, and to be floating and boating again in the beautiful clear waters of Abaco.

We are almost ready to live off the grid and really conserve water.

I am almost ready to be in tune with the changing weather every minute of every day.

We are almost ready to go from living on 25 acres of land to the coziness and confines of a 46 foot boat.

I am almost ready to trade in my car for our dinghy for six months.

We almost decided to come back north this winter and go snowmobiling.

I am almost out of topics to write about for now, so it is good we are almost ready to head south and find new adventures!

Monday, October 4, 2010

The Changing Faces of Fall

We had a gorgeous sunny weekend after the flooding, allowing the waters to recede. I just checked the Waterford webcam and there is finally a boat docked there for the first time since the bad weather began. The floating docks ended up rising up past the concrete seawall and water came over the sidewalk. West on the Mohawk River, a marina had a whole dock with boats still attached break loose and start floating down the river with the 10 mph current. Luckily all the boats and docks were found, rescued, and tied up again.

Our last remaining frog unfortunately disappeared during all the rain. He must have taken the opportunity to move on to greener pastures, or more like a larger pond. I will miss him sitting next to his replica stepping stone. The goldfish will soon be transferred to their winter home at the Rulison's house, where they will live in luxury in a filtered fish tank.

Dave and our friend John, worked on the shed roof all day today and it is back to its former 'glory' (as glorious as it can get anyway), after the big tree fell on it. The roof is ready to be sealed, and then we can put vehicles in it for storage. Dave and I also finished the gable end on the concrete garage, which will be pressure washed and painted if time and weather allows.

Now it has started to rain once again, but it's not expected to be like last week. We will concentrate on inside projects instead, and work on outside projects in between the showers.

To brighten up the next few days, I thought I would post some of our colorful fall pictures.

Our Pashley Ranch trails:

These pictures of Ticonderoga were actually taken a couple of years ago, since I think that by the time we get back up there this year, the leaves will be past peak.