Friday, March 19, 2010

A Trip Journal

Today I completed the photo album I was doing for Mackenzie.  My goal was to get this book finished before we leave here next week.  I will not be doing any of my scrapbooking projects until we return here to Tumwater in late June.  Once I'd finished, I organized all the junk supplies I have and packed then away for travel.  I came across a small box of "stuff" I have in my closet.  Inside I found my Dad's little Trip Journal he maintained during the 2 long RV trips we all took together.

My Dad was a man of few words.  Always.  So, his Trip Journal reflects this same habit of writing his thoughts in as few words as possible.  As I had written long ago, we brought my Dad into our home to live with us in 2004.  This was in a period where we were RV-less.  When our Mothers got ill we sold our motorhome since it was going to be a few years before we could travel again. 

By 2005 we all 3 were living a boring life.   We decided to buy a new MH and take Dad traveling with us.   Turned out he loved it!   Today when I picked up his little Trip Journal I couldn't resist reading through the whole thing again.   I decided to rewrite some (not all) of his entries here.......

Trip to Alaska - 2006
(selected and random entries)

Drove to Blaine, WA 173 miles
K/M Birch Bay RV Park

Drove to Prince George, BC
Saw Buffalo, 1 Deer
Had lunch at McLeese Lake, saw 2 Loons

Cassiar Highway
Glacier above Glacier View RV Park

Drive to Yukon Territory
Yukon RV Park
Ate at Mukluck Annie's
slow service, pork chop dry

Monday, still in Fairbanks
Drove up to Yukon River, 275 miles
many miles of rough roads
saw pipeline, got flat tire

Drove to Denali
Bad time getting RV level
Lousy water at park

Father's Day Breakfast at Fannies Flapjack
All you can eat.
Went to see dog sled demo pull.  Wow!

In Anchorage we went to Heritage Aviation Museum
Had picnic overlooking Cook Inlet
Ate at Gwinnies...lots of food.
Went to Native Heritage Museum, nice.

Drove to Homer
went out on spit saw lots of bald eagles

Went on boat trip to Fjiords
saw: whales, puffins, sea lions, glaciers

Took ferry from Haines Jct. to Skagway
Too many gift shops, too many people

Took train ride in Skagway

Start for home
Saw lots of critters: red fox, bison, brown bear and cubs, caribou, deer

Got home.

These were just a few selected entries.  Naturally there are gaps since I didn't want to put the whole journal into this post.  We were in Alaska for 6 weeks so he could have written pages and pages of stuff.   Most people could go through a notebook or 2 just writing entries for Alaska.  Not Dad.  Like I said, a man of few words.  Dad did talk to us a lot about how much he was enjoying the vacation.  It was obvious that he was having the time of his life.  I know he never dreamed he would see Alaska the way we took him to see and experience it. 

Dad passed away in 2007, 6 weeks after we had returned from taking him to Nova Scotia.  That allowed us the opportunity to begin this fulltime RV journey.  This fulltime living is fantastic, but even now when we go to some interesting or beautiful place in our travels, I'll pause a moment and think about my dear Dad and say to myself, "Man, Dad would sure love to see this!" 

Until next long for now!


Carol K said...

Now we see where you get your blogging roots, Margie. :-) I'm glad you are more wordy than your dad, but his journal is interesting, too, in its own way.


It's nice for you to have your Dad's trip journall. Those are precious memories & the fact you made those entries possible for your Dad make them extra special.

John and Ellen said...

Thanks for sharing Margie, it was a nice post. Even with those few words from your dad, I felt like I was along for the ride. This was a great way to honor your father.

KarenInTheWoods and Steveio said...

AWww that really brings a smile to my face!~ I even read them aloud to Steveio. Gee, 6 weeks of Alaska journal entries, all 3 lines or less. How cute is that?

ps the "slow service, pork chop dry" made me almost spit out my coffee all over the laptop keyboard! LOL

Karen and Steve

Kenny And Angela's Adventure said...

I know those must be great memories for you to read.

When I drove over the road trucks I took my dad along and he just loved it and would tell everybody the stories.

Jerry and Suzy said...

You had a better success taking your Dad with you on the trips. Suzy and I started our full-time RV life with her 95 year old Mom on board the MH. She was excited to be able to travel, but the bounciness of the ride aggravated her arthritis terribly, and she was in pain all the time. Plus other medical problems. She rode with us only three months before she had to go into a nursing center, where she lived happily for two more years!

Happytrails said...

Oh what beautiful memories and what wonderful experiences your love of travel gave to your Dad. Our story is close to the same. My Dad came to live with us at the time we "thought" we were going to full-time. We sold our MH and decided to stay put to help him out. My Dad was unable to travel so we didn't have that privilege.

Thanks for sharing this wonderful memory.

Take care,
Gerri (

squawmama said...

Good Morning Margie... That was so fun to read... Isn't it great to have things wriiten by a parent who is no longer with us. It warms my heart whenever I read something my folks wrote that I have. I feel like they are still with me in those moments. Have a super day! I have some questions about traveling up through Canada to Alaska entering into Canada in Washington. What road to take that is good! Thanks ahead for any help you can give us. Travel Safe

Wild Blue Yonder said...

Thanks for sharing.
I am happy to read that you were able to share that with him, and he enjoyed it.

Time is precious and we don't seem to get enough till there is no more left.

Rick and Paulette said...

Thanks for posting this story, Margie. A lot of great memories there and it was fun to read your Dad's entries.

Gypsy said...

You hacw written a beautiful tribute to your dad, and I think we all love reading his notes. I'd say he was most impressed by the dog sled pull demo! I'd love to hear your description of it, if you can remember it for us.

sue and doug said...

great post Margie..a loving tribute to your Dad's writing style..nice to have those memories to cherish!!

Anonymous said...

Willingly I accept.

Pam said...

Today I am still in a state of disbelief at the senseless deaths of Bruce and Margie. They were truly good friends and a loving, caring, willing, serving couple. They were one of those couples who are truly "one." They loved being together, loved their children and their precious granddaughters, and of course, Annie, the "furry kid." Margie and Bruce were active in our church in Tumwater, Washington, Tumwater United Methodist. The room lit up when they were present. I tried to keep in touch when they were on the road, but did not succeed like Margie did. I was hoping to get her help with starting my own travel blog. I know their faith blossomed in the last six years since they accepted Christ, and their joy and humor were contagious. I was so looking forward to seeing them in November, talking blogs and planning where we might meet next winter when Duffy and I head south for some sun and warmth. God took you home, Bruce and Margie, and you are in the rooms He has prepared just for you. Missing you and wishing peace and grace on your family and friends. In loving memory, Pam Rader