“There’s no place like home!”
Contessa pulled into her home port yesterday (Saturday) about 12:30p. And, oh, it is so good to be home, even as we enjoyed the adventure of sheltering in place with the shelter moving.
We had a very productive 4 days in Tampa. All the Dr appointments and tests occurred on the modified schedule, with both of us feeling very safe with the precautions that the medical facilities had implemented. On Thursday morning, the culmination of the week was with Bill’s Hearing & Balance specialist, located at Tampa General Hospital. There was a palpable pall hanging over the entire facility. Medical personnel in scrubs walking purposely toward a long day – with their heads down and not making eye contact with anyone.
Before Bill could enter the building, they took his temperature – which provided again a reassuring sense of protection. And the results of the MRI — the tumor on his audial nerve that we have been chasing for 12+years has shrunk since the last scan! This is such amazingly good news – his specialist (who was unexpectedly in the office) said that unless he begins to exhibit any of the symptoms we have watched for – primarily balance & right side facial muscles, there is no reason to return! He said “Go have a good life!” Now, that doesn’t mean he has or will regain any of the hearing in that ear, but our concern of additional and frankly more life-impacting effects has been all but erased! Thank God!
We did a little jig in the parking lot of the hospital – and then immediately headed back to Contessa, who was all closed up and ready to head north. We got out shortly after 11 and traveled about 120 miles to Starke FL for the evening. We stayed at a lovely little KOA Campground – totally quiet except for the trains that we love to hear.
We were out at first light on Friday – just anxious to get going, even though we were not trying to make it all the way home in one day. As we crossed the Florida-Georgia border heading north, we saw the barricades on the south bound lanes where Florida State Patrol had set up a total roadblock for all vehicles except semi-trucks. At 8:15a, the back-up was minimal, but we later heard reports of 5-6 mile back-ups. They are interrogating every vehicle, querying specifically those entering from New York/New Jersey/Connecticut. They were taking license/car/phone information and the destination of the passengers – and demanding 14 day quarantine and assuring the passengers that they would be checked on! We missed a similar experience coming into Florida last week – by just a few hours.
With our early departure, we got to our destination for the evening by about lunchtime – HomeStay RV Park near Orangeburg SC (off I-26). What an absolutely fabulous spot for our last night on the road! It is .6 mile down a dirt road to a 40 acre slice of heaven. The owners are building their dream of an event center (barn) and a few campsites (ultimately 10-12) in a several acre clearing around a stocked bass pond. They currently only have one site – so we fundamentally had the place to ourselves, except for the owners in their barn/house.
Saturday dawned bright & beautiful and we savored the many colors of green as spring has definitely come to the Low Country. As we headed north, the dogwoods were in bloom, the red buds were gorgeous and the wildflowers danced in the wind.
We pulled into Brevard about 11:30a Saturday morning, stopped just east of downtown to disconnect the Toad – and we headed up the mountain. Admiral Jann stopped by St. Philip’s to get our Palm Cross and admire the Palm Cross on the front of the church.
Since we arrived home, we have been settling in – which means moving all the stuff off the coach (and from the CA casita) into the cabin. That not only requires multiple trips with the Jeep & F-150, but it means figuring out where to put all the “stuff” into a cabin that is already full! By this evening, almost everything is in its place – or at least a temporary place.
So, now we will shelter-in-place like all of our friends & family have been doing. We have enough food for a month – and enough work on the property for at least twice that long, so we will be fine and will have no problem being bored!
It will probably be mid-late May before we learn whether our Alaska Trip will happen – but if not this year, then next. If it happens this year, we’ll need to leave by June 1 in order to be in northern Washington State by June 24. So, we’ll pause the blog until the next time Contessa & The Toad Get Hitched.
Please take care of yourselves and savor this very special Holy Week! Y’all are always in our thoughts & prayers!
Captain Bill & Admiral Jann