Freedom and Liberty

Freedom and Liberty
I travel in Freedom but sleep in the security of Liberty (not only on the road, but in this amazing country of ours)

Friday, May 5, 2017

Hit the Road Next Week

Location: New Rockdale RV Park; Mansfield, Louisiana 

Well, well, well, looks like I'll be hitting the road next week. I plan to leave here on the 10th and move to Kinder, Louisiana where I'll be close enough to participate in my oldest son's wedding on the 13th. I'll then return back to here so I can check in with one of my doctors on the 15th. At that point, everything should be good to go, with a take-off date of May 16th. I will be heading west to Flagstaff, Arizona. There isn't anything special for me to see there, except it is a decision point for me to either continue west or to turn north. The problem I'm having is deciding which routes to take. In the past, the routes I chose were pretty easy decisions without a lot of second guessing. Now I find myself developing 3 or 4 different routes with each having their own advantages. I've rarely been indecisive in my life and hope this affliction does not continue. Perhaps it will improve once I'm on the road again.

Some of the things that have kept me around here for a while are: 

My oldest son will be getting married on May 13th and I'm the best man. That event will be held in DeQuincy, Louisiana which is in the southwestern part of the state just north of Lake Charles. He is a marrying a nice girl (woman) who likes to ride horses in barrel racing events. They are a good match with each having a son. I'm sure they will blend into a very nice family. There will be more on that event, after it happens. 
My son, Jerry and his bride, Jennifer

Jennifer and her son, Cooper
My youngest son, Brandon, who's been diabetic since he was 9 and celebrated his 32nd birthday yesterday, had a kidney/pancreas transplant evaluation on Wednesday of this week. His kidney function (GFR) is at 23 with 20 being a line for kidney failure. His kidney doctor had set up the evaluation but Brandon will not be eligible for a kidney transplant until his GFR drops below 20. So it is a wait and see. He will not need dialysis until his GFR drops below 15 which hopefully he will have a transplanted kidney by that time. It is unpredictable, but it could be several months or much longer before his GFR drops below 20. The good news is that when he gets on the transplant list, it will be for a kidney and pancreas transplant. They said the waiting list for the combination of organs is actually shorter than if you just receive a kidney. If successful and Brandon's body doesn't reject the pancreas, Brandon will become a non-diabetic for the first time in 23 years. So, Brandon is in a very stable condition with his stroke and diabetes. He stills drives his truck and just renewed his drivers license yesterday. He has started going to the gym and walks on the treadmill for 45 minutes to an hour. He went to the gym 6 days in a row but will probably settle into a routine of every other day. His spirits are still high. With all of the curve balls that life has thrown his way, he has hit each and every one out of the park.

I have also been to the doctors. I've had a stress test and was given clearance to travel by my cardiologist. My GP said my cholesterol was a little high, which was no surprise. I was surprised when he told me I had Type 2 diabetes. I'm taking a pill and checking my blood sugar every now and then as well as checking my ketones. A side effect of the diabetes is that I accidentally lost 10 pounds. My GP and I agreed to continue on my current medicines. My eye doctor is concerned about my high eye pressure (23) combined with what his machine says is a loss of peripheral vision. Those two things usually predict glaucoma in the future. The good news is that my optic nerve shows absolutely nothing wrong with it which contradicts the glaucoma prediction. So, he is scratching his head a little bit but we decided eyes drops should be started to lower the pressure, just in case. I will check back with him to get an up to date pressure check the day before I leave. That reminds me, I need to check the pressure in Liberty's tires too. I will consider doing a laser procedure in the fall when I return. Since I have only rarely used eye drops over the course of my life, the doctor told me how to use them. In the past, I've always held my eyelids open and tried to hit my eyeball with the drops. He told me a better way, which is to lay flat on your back, close your eyes, place the drops on your tear duct, then open and close your eyes several times. The drops will naturally go into your eyes. It works well.

My brother-in-law passed away a few days before Christmas. He was a fireman and it was the first time I've seen the "last call" at a funeral. It was very sad and moving. I will be writing a post about the funeral and how he and my sister met, split up and re-met in a future post. A couple of my work friends also passed away since I've been home. One of them died on the way to the funeral of the first friend. It was a sad time for lots of people.
My brother-in-law, Sam.
I've been able to see a lot of my granddaughter, Olivia. She just turned 3 years of age and is playing "wee-ball". I will miss her and all of my family while I'm on the road.
Me getting a hug from Olivia.
It was a really good hug.

Olivia in the dugout. Great eyes, uh?

Keeping her eyes on the ball

Hands on hips, Ut oh.
That is her father behind her.

A nice family picture. My son-in-law,
Robert, Olivia and my daughter Brittanie.

 Me and Olivia playing with dolls.
Yeah, that's right, dolls. :)
Ya'll take care of each other. I'll Cya down the road.


  1. Nice family & a great life.
    Flagstaff at the end of May, I was there in late June & the weather was great, warm in the days & good sleeping temps at night and not too far from the Grand Canyon.

    1. Thanks Rob. I was hoping the temperatures will still be nice even with me pulling out late in the year. I'm thinking about seeing the canyon again. Maybe staying in the eastern campground on the south rim.

    2. Glad to see a new blog posting. I enjoy your posts whether you are traveling or not. Thanks and safe travels.

    3. Thanks Barney, I hope you are having fun in Rockport.

  2. Glad to see you posting and looking forward to some travel. You have a beautiful family.
    All the best,

    1. Thanks Shawn. I'll be using your blog for some suggestions since ya'll have just come through some of the area I'm heading to.

  3. Happy to see that you will be on the road again. You have a beautiful family and it is nice that all seems to be going well. May it continue. Safe travels and enjoy the west or the north whichever it may be.

    1. Thanks Barb, looks like ya'll are enjoying New Mexico. I'll be passing through there in a couple weeks.

  4. Sorry for your loses. Glad to hear your going to be on the road as I have really missed you posts. BTW, being a St. Louis Cardinals fan I love the granddaughter's hat. Glad to see you raising her to cheer for the right team! Best of luck on your travels and I am looking forward to all your post's

    1. Thanks John. I'm glad you like the blog. The posts will be a lot more frequent once I'm on the road. Since I lived in Cape Girardeau for a couple years, I understand about the Cards. :)