• Blog 46–Back to the wilderness

    Life keeps getting better and better.

    • Back with Tina.
    • Back to traveling.
    • Back to living in the van.
    • Back to happiness.

    May 22–Today was an excellent day. Tina and I traveled to Bake Oven Knob, which is part of the Appalachian Trial. We walked for about a kilometer up to the Knob. As the trail started it was a dirt trail, and then got rockier and rockier with small and large rocks and boulders. Because of my balance issues and vision troubles, this was difficult for me to maneuver, I fell a couple times. Back in the old days I would dance along these rocks with no problem.

    http://www.wanderoutdoors.com/pages/Bake_Oven_Knob.html

    A couple people we talked to who were also walking the trail were traveling on the Appalachian Trail for many many kilometers, through a number of states. I gave them my card and they told me they will send me an email, and that they write a blog and I can get on their list, too.

     

    What was absolutely terrible for me was, about every couple of meters, there was a cigarette butt or human trash. These idiots who smoke (hope you are not one) think they have a right to discard their butt wherever and whenever they want, this is just wrong.

     

    After we did our walk in the woods, we had acquired a list of about ten local wineries to visit for wine and cheese tasting. We did try some good wine and purchased some bottles. By the end of our wine tour we were feeling quite nice (tipsy?) from our wine sipping, alright to drive, though.

     

    We drove to a local Walmart, and next to this place to sleep was an Italian restaurant that lets you bring in your own wine, which we did. We shared a meal and enjoyed our wine. After that we found a parking place to sleep toward the back of the Walmart which was quiet and dark.

     

    As I am typing this on the following morning, Tina is asleep out in the van and I am seated in a back room at the Walmart where I could plug in. Currently there is a “team meeting” going on, where the upper people are telling the under employees how to do better. They are doing cheers and such to get people going–just seems so ridiculous. I have never really worked for a company, so just seems so silly to me.

     

    May 24–We decided to hit the road! Tina has to be back for a medical appointment on June 2, so we have until then to travel–just like the old days. We looked at a map of Virginia, liked what we saw with all the National Parks, so off we went. We had each already, separately, been through Skyline Drive, which goes through Shenandoah Park, so we took a different route.

     

    After driving about 100 miles, half way down, we looked for another Wegmans (we had stayed at one recently, open 24 hours) for the night (much classier than Walmart), none around, we had to settle on parking in a Walmart parking lot. Much less class here, but with the windows covered and all light blocked out, we have no idea where we are, and so, this will do.

     

    On our drive out we had to go through Allentown, Pennsylvania, a fairly large city. Anymore, I do not like cities–wilderness for me, for us, always. I’ve traveled much of the world; I have found that, worldwide, cities do not differ much. But, with different rock formations, various forest settings, different water architecture–the wilderness has a diversity that adds to my life, fulfills me. I hope you get out in the woods now and then, it heals.

     

    May 27–The night before last we stayed at Wolf Gap Campground–so nice to be out-of-doors once again. We went for a hike up a hill, Tina is always being wary of bears, since she came upon one that one time.

     

    Now it is morning and I awoke before the sun was up. No one else around, I like it this way, but, I miss you. This is a free camp place, and there is no drinking water available right now because of plumbing issues, but that is alright. We always carry five one gallon jugs full of water. Tina is getting some more shut eye in the van.

     

    Last night we walked down to a little creek and washed up, felt good to be clean. Today I will be washing all of me including my hair at this little creek, and I mean little, it is only about eight centimeters in depth.

     

    You may remember I wrote about the metric system previously a few posts ago. This is a superior way to figure. Every other part of the world changed to using the metric system, a good thing, why hasn’t the US?

     

    Back in the seventies, under President Jimmy Carter, we were trying to convert to this system, so many lazy citizens here; the American people would not go for it. It is like learning a new language, something people here to not want to achieve, so sorry for that.

     

    I will be learning and converting to this new system, will you join me?

     

    As you might remember, with my old computer the battery did not work, I had to be plugged in. So, we would often have to pull over to find a McDonalds, with free wifi and electric. Right now I am typing with the computer sitting on the picnic table and me in a nice chair; very comfortable. I will be writing more and more while out-of-doors, very nice. Thank you again, Albert, for getting this computer for me.

     

    On our way we stopped by The National Bridge of Virginia. Cost is $18 to go and see it; I thought the cost was too high, Tina still wanted to go; I stayed with the van doing some improvements.  She took this photo:

     

    Here is more about the natural bridge:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vD613A_66ww

     

    May 27–Now at North Creek Campground in Jefferson National Forest:

    http://www.virginia.org/listings/outdoorsandsports/northcreekcampgroundgwjeffersonnationalforest/

    The coming weekend is Memorial Day, so I made sure we secured somewhere to stay.

    Talk about a wonderful place to be:

    • Very quiet.
    • Spaced nicely between sites.
    • Butterflies were abundant.
    • Many birds everywhere.
    • Saw two deer on the way up.
    • The toilets were quite clean,
    • No insects bugging us. 
    • Only nine campsites. 
    • Towering trees reach for the sky everywhere.
    • Out our back door is a strong running creek.
    • In the creek is a pool where we can bathe.
    • Fish were swimming around.
    • Birds are making their bird noises.
    • The temperature is quite comfortable.
    • I am able to write to you this morning while Tina is continuing to sleep.

    Could not ask for more. 

    Last night, as we were preparing to make dinner (yummy tacos again) the rain started. So, we shifted everything into the van and enjoyed our meal much. Also, with the rains, I put the plants outside to soak in the drops. As you might know, we grow lettuce, spinach and cilantro in the van, serves us well.

     

    What a pleasure to be able to sit in the forest and write you. As winter ends and spring begins, my mind turns to the wilderness once again.

     

    In the technical age, our culture has almost forgotten the need for humans to experience the natural environment. We’re so busy, so connected, so wound up in our own unnatural worlds; we are losing our natural ways.

     

    If you can, make time to get in the outdoors in a natural environment for at least twenty minutes daily–a local park can work. This will revitalize you and get your mind thinking clearly. Twenty minutes in nature and you are better able to face challenges and you will feel perkier about life in general.

     

    Regular exposure to nature affects the body, as well. Your immune system improves; your body has lower concentrations of cortisol (a stress hormone) lower pulse rate and lower blood pressure. With the sun, your body and mind will produce more vitamin D, which will help prevent osteoporosis and cancer and lower your chance of having a heart attack.

     

    If you work in an office setting, it is much better if you can have your window facing the outdoors and nature. Bring in flower plants and eatable plants to place on your desk. Even posters of nature can help your mind. And, sunlight is so important.

    So, take time to get away from:

    >>the television

    >>the computer

    >>your smart device

    Get back to nature–it will heal you and comfort you.

    It’s easy to get holed up in our dens of technology, but stepping outside, nature or not, is the best thing for you–in oh so many ways. Whether you’re suffering from frequent coughs or colds or you are simply in a creativity rut, the outdoors may be just the fix you’re looking for.

    Time spent outside, specifically, time spent immersed in nature, can bathe your mind in meditative relaxation. In Japan, this is known as “forest bathing”, but you don’t need to get deep into the forest to reap the benefits, although, I am loving being in the forest. Just stepping into a park or outdoor “green” area can confer immediate effects.

    Reboot your brain with nature!

    After some time spent outside, you will feel more productive, more focused and may even experience an improvement in your memory; being outside can especially rekindle that spark of creativity that may have dissipated from your daily routine. Your mind will be rejuvenated to aim toward betterment.

    Above all else, those who spend more time outdoors also experience lower incidences of depression. Think of the outdoors as a soothing balm for your brain. Get as much of it as you can.

    In 1977 I graduated from Point Loma High in San Diego, and, graduating with me was my friend, Daniel Powell. Because of some real estate investments early in his life, he has had the resources to travel and to live the life that he wants. He has been to many parts of the world exploring, although, not necessarily to visit cities, his latest escapade was a trip to New Zealand backcountry.

    Jealous, perhaps, I just know that we can all live a better life, like Daniel. And, it will not take gobs of money to do it.

    In the place where you reside, plant many edible plants, as well as many flower plants. Buy “fun”iture that you love, buying used works for me. Bring the wilderness to you, your home, and your yard. Don’t just “live” your life, design the life that “you” want, as Tina and I have done by buying the van and traveling.

    May 28–Awoke before the sun was up at all, as usual. Laid in bed until light was into the area. Then, off to the races with me. This campsite is excellent. Always projects for improvement to the van, enjoyable for me, yes. We spent two nights at this luxurious campsite, we did not want to, but time to move on.

     

    May 29–Off we went to Trout Pond Campsite in Washington National Forest. Many people here, after all, it is Memorial Weekend here in the US. We found a vacant campsite, not as nice as our last one, but there are a lot of trees and birds. And, a shower available here–yes, time for both of us to clean up. Tina is in there now, it has been some time.

    A healthy life is a simple equation, really. You can either spend your life indoors and sad, or you can be gallivanting outdoors and loving it. You can either take years off of your life, or add quality to your life.

    Get outside, you’ll use your muscles more, you may even smile more. You’ll also push yourself harder when you get outside. Addicted to your gym membership? Consider the outdoors as a free gym membership that you shouldn’t squander, it’s always available.

    And, reset your eyes on your future. If your job entails you stare at a screen under flickering florescent lights for eight hours a day, you need to get outside more. The natural light of the outdoors relieves the eyes from the strain of artificial lighting and screens.

    For children, especially, spending more time outdoors may help decrease the risk of a development of nearsightedness, too. Keep your eyes healthy by taking a gander outside on the regular basis.

    The people who spend more time outside have a significantly higher immune function, including an increase in natural killer cells, than those who spend much of their time indoors.

    Natural killer cells are powerful agents in the prevention of tumors and cancer forming in the body, so the importance of getting out into nature cannot be overstated. Even if you’ve found yourself simply succumbing to colds more frequently, maybe more outdoors time is just what the doctor ordered.

    Load up on sunshine. Going outside into the sunshine allows your body to produce vitamin D. This vitamin, if you haven’t heard it enough, is very important for your health. It helps to stave off depression, strengthen bones and can decrease your risk of heart disease.

    Reconnect with your roots.

    If you’re looking to get more in touch with yourself and with your natural surroundings, just get outside. If you spend enough time in nature, you will begin to sense subtle shifts in your environment.

    • You’ll notice fluctuations in your energy. 
    • You’ll become more open and calm when you feel how incredibly vast the outside world is. 
    • You will bring happiness to yourself. 

    In a way, spending more time outside puts you more in tune with our surrounding world.

    Nothing is wrong with a little outdoor perspective now and then, it is a good thing.

    May 31–After a night at that large campground with many people, we had to get back to something more remote. We found Hawk Mountain Campground. Difficult to get to, but being here is well worth it. Only nine sites in this free campground and only one other couple here–this is how I like it. There are no wifi or electric connections anywhere, so I am typing offline on battery power.

    Also, at this campground were groups of butterflies that would all land together and meander around on the ground for awhile. They we not there for sex, but seemed to be eating parts of the ground, very strange.

    Right now it is morning, I developed a large fire, and I am typing while listening to the fire crackle, a stream flow and birds making their bird sounds–talk about back to nature! On the way I had stopped at a Lowes, who sells wood and building materials. They had a bunch of scrap wood that I picked up for the fire.

    Don’t just live life–experience life!

    May 31–On we drove, with no direction or destination, and then we found Elizabeth Furnace Campground. Not many people here, but not near a lake or stream, as we like. We had our choice of any of the campsites, so we chose the best, of course.

    At the last campground someone told us of a place to get water to drink, which was on the way. Water was diverted from a small stream by two pipes, always flowing. When we arrived, there was a guy there who was filling many gallon and five gallon containers. When he was done we took over. Yes, this was the best water I have tasted, and I have tasted much. The minerals were evident, and I am sure this liquid was packed with vitamins.

    You may know from past writings that one of my joys in life is to drink water from a clean stream in the mountains. As you drink, it seems so healthy, naturally. Bottled water from the store is no match, whatsoever.

    June 1–Back to city life, yug. But, we were on our way to Baltimore to see my friend, Lisa Polinari, perform at the inner harbor.

    unicyclelady.com

    It was a Wednesday evening and the crowd was small. As usual, she did a good show, the crowd loved it.

    June 2–Now back in the Allentown area of Pennsylvania:

    • Back to all the cars
    • Back to all the heat . . .
    • Back to so many people.
    • Back to sales of everything.
    • Back to unhappy people.

    Can’t wait to get back to the wilderness and back to nature.

    And, can’t wait to write you again.


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  • Blog 45–To catch you up.

    Tina and I decided to spend a few days at Delaware Water Gap National Park, a great time was had by all. 
     
    April 16-18–

    We saw a sign that read “Picnic area” and “Boat Ramp”, we were not going to picnic and did not have the boat this time, but, down the road we went. After crossing over a not so good road (my always being careful because of what occurred before with an unknown dirt road) we came out on the river, no one around, and a fabulous place to park, to eat, to play and to sleep in the van. 

     

    As I am typing this I am in the van at the table I built looking out the double doors at a lavish field of grass, where I am sure deer graze in the morning, beyond which is a flourishing forest. On the other side of the van we have the Delaware river flowing by. We spent the night here, no one around, it was fabulous. So quiet, so calm, so isolated. 

     
    There is a toilet to use and a nice meadow. We are so pleased with the place we are staying for two nights. We just finished our breakfast, me hash-brown potatoes with fried onions, Tina ate a nice salad. Walking, talking, juggling, reading–What a delightful life we are living. 
     
    The second day a couple guys showed up to catch fish in the river. They were out on their boat so we never did see them much. besides, I am allergic to fish anyway. We did find out that what they do is catch and then release the fish back into the river. Seems to me like a waste of time, and it hurts the fishies. There are much more meaningful things you can do for entertainment in your life, don’t you think?
     
    May 10–I must apologize, I have not been adding words to this recently. I am in Delaware with circusofthekids.com at Christ the Teacher School working with kids and teaching circus skills. 


    May 2-13–We are here at the school for two weeks, the first week is introduction to what the kids can do in the circus and putting together the circus, the following week the students perform their circus.


    I worked with the ringmaster, who runs the show. He was quite good, and I taught him to juggle, too. 
     
    The four shows were very well received by the audience, good to see. Bruce has put together a program for students that does much more than teach them circus skills, learned were skills that they will use throughout their life. 
     
    Because I have not been traveling much, I have not been writing much. I just wanted to get words to you that I am still alive and life goes forward. You will receive a more detailed posting soon.


     
    Bye for now>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Kit

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  • Blog 44–Back to NYC

    No, I have not disappeared, here I am. Sorry I have been adding to this, must make it a habit once again.
    March 21-30–On this last day of staying with Albert Lucas I saw him do a practice session of his juggling, I am quite impressed. He approaches the practice like a serious athlete would face a tough workout. He stretches and works on his body first, including beating his hands (gently with a juggling club) to get them read to handle the props.
    I witnessed a true workout, not just the throwing of juggling props around. I remember approaching my practice the same way, a serious endeavor. I also used the same method toward my pole vaulting in high school, where I jumped over 18.6 feet, a school record.
    In my last post I wrote words on my thoughts on God, again.
    1. I will limit my words on this subject from now on.
    2. I am just trying to get people to think more and more completely.
    3. I am not trying to discount belief in any way.
    4. Everyone needs to question most everything at many times, I believe.
    March 31–Yesterday I left Albert’s and got on the road toward the east; nice to be behind the wheel once again. I saw there were some national parks on the way, so, of course, tried to find campgrounds. I discovered a road that lead down by a river; a very nice view. I found a place to park on some grass, but the place was a little soggy. Tacos for dinner again, taste so good.
    I was ready to bed down by the nice river, but then my mind started thinking the worst, that my wheels might sink into the ground and I would be stuck, and I was out away from anything. I decided to pack things up and head out of there. Yes, I did get stuck, as I thought. I went forward, back, forward, back, rocked, rocked–eventually got through the muck–getting back on to better road. This had me scared once again.
    So, no more unknown dirt roads, and I must be careful where I drive the van.
    I found a McDonalds down the road that is open 24 hours (now, who would want a hamburger at 3am?) I got on their wifi, then out to the van for sleep. I awoke at 1:30am to get rid of some liquid I had drank earlier, than I thought I would not get back to sleep. I did and sleep until 5am, feel good about that.
    April 1–No April fools jokes from me (or, am I one?) Today I drove through St. Louis toward Kentucky. On the way I saw on the map there were some national parks and wilderness areas on the way south, so, I had to scout them out. I did find a national forest, did not find any campgrounds.
    But, I did drive down a dead end dirt road (being careful the road was well suited for my travel) It ended in the wilderness by a small stream, how nice. Here I am for the night–look at me! I did have a couple beers in my arsenal, they calmed me.
    Funny, I don’t think I have ever been through Kentucky before, surprised at that. So, now I have physically been to all 50 states/ 
    My new computer is functioning excellent. A couple hours of battery life, more than my old computer. And, as you see, this one types better and nicer words, too. Thank you again, Albert, for buying this for me.
     
    April 2–Arrival in the afternoon at Mammoth Cave National Park. Yikes, I got here on a Saturday, seems everyone wants to arrive on this day–it was packed. I did not want to explore the cave today, just settle into a campground. The first one, near to the cave, had many many people. I kept on to find a more remote place to rest my head. There was one, but as I started to drive there, it was about 15 miles away, too far away for me, in that I wanted to see the cave tomorrow.
    I saw that a few miles away there was Maple Springs Campground, so I took the turn for that. I was hoping it was deserted somewhat, but as I drove toward it and, as the road started going downhill, I saw a line of cars waiting. There was a ferry crossing across a small river, only about 50 meters across. It was so cute, this little ferry could only take 2 or 3 cars at a time, therefore the line. This ferry was on cables between the two shores. What a wonderful adventure.
    This campground had fewer people, but too many for my comfort. I expected that there would not be much firewood available around the campsite location, so I stopped along the way and got much. Too much wind for a nice fire, but will wait, but it is already 4:30. The wind stopped and the fire started, comfort is found.
    As the evening came the wind had calmed and I was able to build a jubilant fire, nice and warm to keep me comfortable into the night. Have you ever been out spending time in the out-of-doors like this? It will bring so much joy to your life, you must. You will see, it is so mesmerizing to stare at a fire, puts you in another world. I still wonder where the wood goes. The fire burns all the huge pile of wood down to just some embers. I know that wood contains much air, but it still surprises me at how it just goes away.
    Watching the wood burn down reminds me of when I went to Tony Robbins firewalk talk. At the start he had some people start burning a large pile of wood, then he gave a motivational talk for about 70 minutes. He said some great words and by the end everyone there was inspired to take the walk, including me.
    At the end of his talk he had everyone go outside to where the fire was, just being coals now. The coals were raked out even, then every one of the participants walked across the ten foot long path of coals. The demonstration showed everyone that yes, you can do most everything. I say in my talks–“If someone else can do it, so can you, you just have to find a way.” Therefore, I knew I could make the walk over the coals.
     
    I bought an ear of corn to put onto a future fire. 
    I wrote of this before, the best tasting corn there is. Simply place the ear directly on the fire. Turn it once then fetch it out. You will find that the corn is moist and tasty.
    Many times when I eat corn I am reminded of the old Cheech and Chong bit where one of them says, “I like the corn in there for texture, Ralph.” If you are around my age I am sure you will remember.
    April 3–Today is the anniversary of when I got hit by that truck in 1982. I think of this day almost like my birthday, important for some reason. I’ve just changed so much since that time, as I am sure you have, too. I’ve been eating a lot of salad, feeling like a rabbit I am. This one has some chicken from when I made tacos, so, a nice taste.
     
    Mammoth Cave National Park, here I come!  Arriving on a weekend, not so good, many at the park. As you might know, I don’t like to deal with a lot of people, which were here in force. I went to where I was told to find the cave (there were a few to enter) and walked about 3/4 mile, nothing there. I was not liking all the people around and didn’t really want to be there, so I got my money back and departed. I knew I can watch Youtube videos later of Mammoth Cave, I am sure. Take a look:
    and
    April 5–So, I arrive back to where I lived for almost 30 years, near Philadelphia, and I look outside–there is snow falling! This is the coldest it has been in all my travels.
    Today I had Dave, who has been working on my vehicles for many years, because he is so good, put new front brakes on. Then, I went to see Bill at Keytron Computer, and Mark looked over my new computer and made improvements, such as making it much faster. Right next door to Keytron is a bike shop, I had them look over and improve my new bike, turned out excellent. Also, they put on new handlebars that John gave me, thanks, John! So, much done today, I am happy.
    Time goes too fast. Hard to imagine that just two days ago I will in Mammoth Cave. 
    Spent a couple days with my daughter, April. She has done so well in her life. So far, she has been to San Diego, Scotland and Peru, at her young age. I am expecting a brilliant future–hear the proud daddy? Have you seen: https://aprillsummers.wordpress.com/
    Stayed a couple nights in the van in the back of April and Mary Ellen’s home. Good to reconnect with Mary Ellen. We were married for 23 years, but near the end we were not doing so well together. I see how I loved this woman much as we helped each other through life.
    April 15-17–What a wonderful weekend. Tina and I were together the whole time and our love grew and grew once again. My future with Tina is back, I am so happy. We are making plans a and very superb future together. You will hear more later.
    April 11-23–Worked at Reece School in New York City with Bruce and his company, circusofthekids.com. We worked with the kids to put together a circus show. The kids loved learning to walk on a tight wire, to hang on a trapez and swing, to juggle, and much more.
    And, I hope you are happy. I would love to hear from you.
    Write you again soon>>>>>>>>>>>Kit

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  • Blog 43–Enough already !!

    ​​After reading over ​the blog I last sent, and hearing from Chris Myers on how I could be less depressing in my writings, I have changed my focus–you will notice a change in what you are reading. Thank you, Chris, for helping me get back in the right state of mind.

    We all have difficulties, we all go through changes, why would you want to read about mine when you have your own. I’ve actually written about this in past books, it is where we focus that makes our life go a certain direction. 

    ​If you ​focus on negative and sad things, and you will often​ bring that to your life. ​I have been focusing on the bad, because I am going through much that is not good now, but am I actually bringing more on? ​I must take back control of my thoughts and mind, difficult, but I must.
     
    ​I wrote in the last blog about how I was walking up some wet steps in New Orleans and fell, my shin hitting an edge and getting hurt badly. After about five days, ecause of the pain in my left leg and my foot turning purple, I found a small hospital out in the middle of nowhere to get it looked at. It seemed that me and just me and​ one other patient were at Watkins Hospital in Quitman, MS​; yes, a strange city name. Was treated by Rushikesh Mehta, MD, and hearing his accent and name, seems to be from India. ​Seemed that he was the only doctor for emergency, and also the whole hospital (or, hotpistol, as Maryellen used to say.)
    I had to be there waiting for various things for three hours, yikes.

    Just to make sure it was not broken they took several xrays, and it wasn’t, which I knew. As I wrote in my last email, such a strange injury, I’ve not had anything like this. He gave me a prescription for antibiotics and sent me on my way. 

    Losses I had omitted in the last email.
    How could I forgot these other major events in my life:
    • My father died when I was only six years old. He worked for the Oregon Fish Commission. They had rented a helicopter and pilot and the were looking for log jams on a river. The pilot did not see some high electric wires, they hit them and fell to the ground.
    • ​My older brother was taking a bus from San Diego to Baker, Oregon. Because of drugs he was doing so well mentally. No one knows why, but he got off the bus and was hitch-hiking. He stepped in front of an oncoming vehicle and was killed. 
    • About five years after my older brother was killed, my younger brother (who was living in Eastern Oregon) and my older brother’s son were off-roading in a truck​. Drinking beer, no seat belt, they rolled the truck, both killed.
    • About two years ago my mom died from an infection.​ I never saw life without my mom around, so it affected me deeply and for a time I was devastated
    • My sister and I never did connect well. After the death of my mother she does not want to connect at all with me now, so another loss. 
    Back to the wilderness, again for me, which, as you know, I love. My Access Card, which gets me into all the National Parks, must have slipped out of my wallet. I called and then went to a forest ranger station and she gave me another card, no charge. You see, everything will be provided, there are no worries. Recently, as you know, I needed a new bike, one was provided. 
    ​But, we choose what we think are “provided”, when we are in need of so much. ​There are losses, but there is also good, I must always remember.
     
    ​In this same national park was a superb campground, I must tell you about it:​
     
    ​I​ seldom stay for two nights at a campsite, because this one is so superb and I have things to do, I ​must​ stay.
    Marathon Lake Campground is quite beautiful. Each campsite has a water source, a picnic table and an electric hookup. Then, there are showers and a bathroom building, too. All you need to live i​s food, which I have.
    ​ See my juggling clubs in the photo below?​

    I must describe how it is right now:
    • There is a cool breeze blowing through the trees.
    • Tall trees are all around, beautiful to look at.
    • ​Birds in the ​trees are making their bird noises.
    • ​Above the trees a​ partly cloudy sky is overhead, sun popping through now and then.
    • ​​There are strips of grass down by the lake, you can see my juggling clubs in grass in the photo.
    • Some trees are felled nearby, they just leave them as they return into the Earth.
    • I am sitting at a picnic table typing these words to you (with a smile on my face.) 
    • A honking goose just flew overhead.

     
    You might wonder what I could do for two days all day. Here are a few things I accomplished:
    • Went for a long bike ride. 
    • Gathered more firewood.
    • Cut my hair (have an electric buzz cutter, I simply put my head down and make sure it all is the same length, turns out nice.)
    • Juggled by the lake. 
    • Read a National Geographic Magazine.
    • Wrote these words for you. 
    • Danced a jig. 
    • Cleaned my windows in the van. 
    • ​Made exquisite meals for  myself. ​

    My future plans are to visit Gregory at Gballz company while on my way up to see Albert Lucas in Branson, Missouri for a time. Then on to New York City to work with

    ​ Bruce Pfeffer and Circusofthekids.com. ​After I wrote a past blog about not knowing of my future, Bruce suggested I could start with them, so I ​will be​ ​starting with them on April 10 in New York City. Of course, you will learn later how it is with me there. ​A future, makes me happy.
     
    ​March 18-19–Was with Gregory at his Gballz factory and home, http://thegballzfactory.ashop.me/, what a ​wonderful place it is. His father-in-law had this undeveloped land and Gregory developed it, in a superb way. His house/factory are build as one, no drywall, all wood, the way I like it. And, he has more land to build more, even a pool if he desires. In his business it is a one man show in making the balls, his wife cuts out patterns and does much more. I must say, I am quite impressed.
     
    Gregory helped me with some computer skills I lack, such as learning to put on these photos you see here. Also, with his sewing skills he repaired my sleeping bag, thank you for that, Gregory. 
     
    And, on March 19 after leaving Gregory’s house, I went in search of wilderness in the Ozarks, and, I just went through an off-road adventure that was quite scary. I set GPS to take me to a campground in the Ozarks, it ended up sending me down a dirt road. This road went downhill and was alright at first, then the road narrowed and started getting rocky (bouldery, too.) I could not turn around anywhere and could not back up the hill, so I had to continue forward–the road got worse. 
     
    Sending me through one foot deep puddles and small streams on this rain cut gully road, I had to continue forward. GPS showed where I was, and was hard to figure out how to get out, so on I went. On some points there was more than one way to go, I had to guess, yikes. At one point on one side was a bank (no, I didn’t make a deposit) and the other was a drop off (didn’t make a deposit there, either, fortunately.)
     
    You could call me the Ozark Mountain Daredevil. 
     
    At times I had to hit the gas peddle to make it up the next hill. I was quite scared throughout this adventure, if I got stuck or dropped off the side I would be ruined. Eventually I got to a better dirt road, then a paved road. I could have easily gotten stuck somewhere and I would have no way out. This drive was a nightmare.
     
    Any mistakes and I would be a goner. 
     
    The van performed off-road superbly, outperforming many four wheel drive vehicles, I would think. It had the 8 cylinder power I needed and got me through some messy road and hills. After I went through this the check engine light was on for a time, but turned off by itself, I may have it checked out. That is the last time I take ANY dirt roads I don’t know about.
     
    Traveling on, as Spring is coming, as I was passing my huge pastures with cows eating of the grass. Each cow eating all day, everyday, what a life. It’s funny, the cows eat the grass and then we eat the cows, why can’t we just eat the grass and surpass the meat stage? 
     
    How is a huge pasture different from a big lawn. One is for eating, the other is for mowing. Which one is a waste of time? I’ve always disliked lawns, what a waste to constantly be taking care of it. I would rather have the natural look with gardens, rocks and wood. 
     
    Yesterday was Sunday, I was passing Ozark Mountain Community Church and saw cars and some people going in, I decided to join them. The service just happened to be starting in about 15 minutes, so my timing was excellent (a gift from god?) 
     
    I’ve been to hundreds of church services and they all seem similar. I attend hoping for some way to believe, to see why all these people are so committed, how is that? 
     
    Every church service seems the same. 
     
    There is singing, as people read the words on the screen, for some time. Then the pastor or guy in charge starts his sermon (sad that is  always a guy.) 
     
    The audience is told how they are all sinners and bad and that they need to find god (demeaning and damaging to a human mind, I would think.) Then, of course, the audience is told that the cure is to find god and give money to the church. Seems that all these people attending church need to be reminded each week to believe or they may drop out. Talked into it again week after week. 
     
    I still cannot accept and believe in any kind of god, it is so against human intellect. 
     
    I quietly left after and drove down the road. 
     
    Now on to Branson, Missouri to see Albert Lucas. After arrival in Branson, and my computer would not work! I will write more of that later. 
     
    Albert is one year younger than myself, and has been juggling since the age of three. Trained by his father who is living in Las Vegas with his wife, dad is 98 years of age, mom is 86.  I remember his mom and dad quite well, we first meet at an Ice Capades show in which Albert was performing in 1977. His skills are quite advanced. 
     
    Here is the show he is in: http://www.dixiestampede.com/branson
     
    He is in such good shape, running and juggling daily, as well as performing daily, too. His house is quite nice and only about a one minute walk to the theater, right up a small hill from the show, the perfect location to live. They do have a cat, fortunately my allergies are in check, normally I am highly allergic to cats. 
     
    As you read, my computer died, it performed so well for me before the mother board said no more. Albert bought me a new one, this one I am typing on now, a Lenovo. I am so grateful for his help. 
    While here I am giving Albert suggestions for improving his act, which he is liking, and says that they are helping, much. Good to see him put into action suggestions I make. Also, I will be helping him to develop a website; surprised he does not have one as of yet. I will write the words, then pass those words on to a website developer. If you know anyone who does good websites, please let me know.
     
    I saw four shows by Albert, each one he took on my ideas and his show did get better. In fact, ratings of his show over the last few days show that people loved it. An unbelievable juggler, I saw no drops, quite impressive. He said that, with my help, his show has improved.

    In the 1970’s, when I was working on and learning so many new tricks–under the leg, behind the back, over the top–there was one trick that was difficult to name. On this trick, while juggling three clubs, the club is thrown between the legs, from the front, so that the club travels over your hip or shoulder to be caught with the other hand and back in the pattern. A long wording, so I decided to give it a name.

    In 1976 I went to see a performance of Ice Capades, mainly to see the phenomenal juggler Albert Lucas, who performed in the show. He does the trick I wrote about in the previous paragraph. Not only was he making the juggling throws with that trick, he was skating in a spread eagle and moving while performing the trick. Right then and there, I decided to call the trick, “Albert throws.” Now, all over the world, people are calling this trick “Albert throws.”

    Happily married to Ruth for over seven years, they are great together. 

    March 28–Today Mike Chirrick took me out for lunch, how nice. Both Mike and Albert were juggling idols of mine as I was going through my teens and getting better at juggling. Jon Held and I even drove from San Diego to Las Vegas to meet and see Mike juggling in the 1970’s. We were both quite impressed. Here is Mike, take a look:
    And,  view a video here:
    Mike is 64 years of age now, living in Branson, and still performing. He tells me his body is slowing down and performing is more difficult with age. A sad part of life for all of us. 
     
    In looking at a map of the US recently, I see that I have been to every state, including Alaska and Hawaii. Just, not quite sure about Kentucky, so I be going through that state on my way back east.
    So, ending my wonderful stay with Albert Lucas and heading back toward where I started this drive.
    Time to get back to the wilderness.
    I’ll write you soon again>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Kit

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  • Blog 42–The Verdict

    Had to get this off to you, some people have been asking of me.
    Right now I have this massive anger about life, not wearing my seatbelt, not caring.
    But, I am getting back into National Park land in Mississippi, I like that.
    Sorry there are no photos again, just want to get this out.

    March 16–Had to let you know right away what happened when I went before the judge yesterday.

    After I had explained everything the judge still found me guilty of leaving the scene of an accident, had to pay $266.
    I am so glad it is over, at least. I cannot sleep, again, it is about 1am. Sleep comes very difficult for me anymore.
    Now it is 11:01 and I did not sleep last night.
    ===========================================
    Each time I start a new blog I think of it as going on a new adventure and taking you with me. In fact, I look to make good things happen so that I can write about these experiences for you. Perhaps this writing can work for you? This writing can add to and bring more fulfillment in your life, I would love you read of your doings.

    Because of the pain caused by my recent fall and attempt to catch myself using my arm, which was too straight and hurt my ball and socket in my shoulder, I awoke at 1:30am last night and could not get back to sleep. I drove carefully, only about 70 miles, down to the beaches at Galveston. I’ve seen some great sites and hope my camera is working now to share them with you.

    In driving south from Houston toward Galveston I hit traffic, much traffic. It is a Saturday and, perhaps, people are getting out of town? As you know, I do not like cities, one big city all the way down.

    I went to some beaches and walked–lovely. Now I am in a Walmart parking lot using their free wifi to write to you. This one is quiet, and, because I am quite tired from no sleep last night, I believe I will just stay here for the night, although it is only 3:30 in the afternoon, I think I will go on some walks and such. Also, I have books to read, a pleasant time will be had by me in the van.

    Found joy today. I took a ferry ride in the van (no, not a fairy ride.) My van on a boat, can you imagine? From Galveston to Port Bolivar, a free ride. I went up to the upper deck–the sun was shining bright, the wind was passing by as the ship moved forward, we even saw two dolphins pop up for some air–magnificent. Also, I spent some time at the beach, well, the gulf, anyway.

    Yesterday I had a nice talk with Tina, boy I miss that women.

    Everyday is a new and different adventure. Today I drove toward the east, saw some nice gulf settings. Now I am parked under a big bridge on the water where I will spend the night. New adventures, I love them.

    March 6, 2016–Last night, as I wrote, I found a high bridge to park under in which to sleep, very comfortable, right next to the water. Then, today, another ferry to ride, no charge. I am enjoying this adventure I am on.

    Was passing by a small library in Cameron, LA and decided to stop and see if they want to buy my books. She said they have a very small budget and did not have funds available. I was probably the only visitor at this library today. With most people having a computer nowadays, libraries and no longer necessary, really. I was at this library for three hours, no one came in. There were two people working at the time, too.

    On the internet I searched freecampsites.net and found Rutherford Beach a few miles away. Also, my van gas was on empty, so off I went to get the elixir that keeps me going. After obtaining fuel, I set GPS to a location near where I would find that beach. I had to do some searching, but here I am on this deserted beach. As you know, people pay thousands of dollars to live on a beach–here I am!

    Quite windy right now, hoping that will calm down. Having made a dinner of two scrumptious tacos and having a bottle of wine, I am quite content, There are grass fields everywhere, and the gulf, of course, looks fantastic. Clean sand with small waves rolling in, a paradise.

    With the wind, it was making noise with straps on the bike rack. As you know, I accidentally ran over my other bike, keeping the bike rack for the next one. Anyway, I was comfortable reading and ready for bed, so, of course, I went outside the van to adjust the straps on the bike rack in only my underwear (under where?) Being on this deserted beach I had to. Felt good, too.

    Currently reading The Journeys of Socrates by Dan Millman. I had read his books back in highschool, so good to bring back those fantastic memories of his stories. Such a good writer, you must get his books. Start with Journey of the Peaceful Warrior, then move on to The Journey of Socrates–You will love the read. I connected with Dan, the author of these books, and we did some correspondence, a wonderful man.

    To get good used books for cheap go to abebooks.com, you will be surprised at the prices, probably just a couple bucks for each of these books.

    So, I have time to spend before I have to back in Mobile for my court appointment, looking for parks and wilderness areas to go to, not much around.

    Embarrassed to admit, a couple years ago I applied and started receiving EBT (food stamps.) At about $180 a month, that helped. But, I talked with someone from there today and she said that, because I am not living in Pennsylvania right now, the money for food will stop. Makes me sad, but . . . I do have a way to deal with it though, I will just stop eating, I am seldom hungry, after all.

    I must also admit, what a fantastic adventure I am on. Living in the forests, living at beaches, living where I have to, making the most of life right now.

    March 8–At 1:30am my bladder told me to get rid of some of the wine, so I did. Then my mind started thinking, I could not get back to sleep. As you might know, I do fine on little sleep, really. I’ve been reading and cleaning the van, it is now 3:30 early morn. I will wait for the sun to make its appearance, then I will be back on the road.

    Good thing Google has the ability to write this while offline, as I am doing now.

    How do you say, Atchafalaya? This river National Park is the largest swamp in the US. Many different kinds of birds and fish, they take good care of this park. Not having a boat with me, there was not much I could do. I did see some spectacular birds.

    March 9–For some reason I have massive anger right now toward life. I want to yell, I want to cry, I want to hurt myself, I want to die. Looking toward the future and not seeing anything currently. A metal pin connection on the battery on my computer broke yesterday, so now I can only use the computer when it is plugged into electric. I’ve tried to contact Tina numerous ways today, I am hearing nothing back. I just hope she is alright and not in a hospital or something.

    Kyle’s friend had a bike for me, how wonderful. This will serve me well.

    Before I left Kyle’s I was about to walk up some wooden steps and slipped and fell and scraped my shin–badly. This brought the most pain I have had in quite a long time. And, the swelling, yikes, seemed to swell one inch out. I was going to drive myself to the hospital to make sure nothing was broken, but decided against it. The next day my shin was much better. But, it scared me.

    Off to Mobile and my friend Lee Miller, who’s house I had stayed at before. Since the last time I was there and taught Lee to juggle with clubs, he bought some, they are small, junior type clubs, be something to learn with. Lee and his wife Claire have a wonderous love for each other, makes me jealous.

    For some reason, for the last few days I have had tremendous anger, pain, and fear in me. Along with no sleep last night, this comes from the trouble of losing Tina and from this court date on Tuesday. I really don’t have fear of this judge and what might happen, actually hoping for execution, that would work well for me right now. Strange, I feel like my head’s about to explode. But, I will present my case that I am not guilty and am hoping the judge will understand and release me. You will find out.

    Right now it is Sunday morning, March 13, I have March 15 at 4pm to simply sit and wait. There is a chance I might go to a National Park which is 110 miles away, but might just stay in the area.

    Steve Harrison, I am glad you are there and often checking up on me. My mind seems to be slipping away in the pain I am going through, who knows what the future will hold for me.

    Here I am at McDonalds typing these words for you. At this point I have no family or anyone close; I am glad you are there.

    I must say, I am so sick of the accidents and loses I have had in my life. Not wanting to have you feel sorry for me, just to let you know more of my life. I think there are a few you may not have known about, I am embarrassed to tell you, but here are a few:
    1982 — Hit by a truck while walking in a bad rainstorm, 37 day coma. Lost my juggling ability and much more.
    1986 — Divorced from my first wife, Robin.
    1988 — While living alone I was out riding my bike on trails. I took a bump wrong and fell. Broke my shoulder.
    1990 — Was riding slowly on my bike and fell to the side, then hit my head. Have had tinnitus since (ringing in my ears.) Right now it is very loud, like when you listen to a seashell, but very loud in both ears.
    2009 — Divorced from my second wife, Mary Ellen.
    2010 — While riding my bike, hit by a truck, again, his fault, much of my body broken. Lost my ability to run because of a broken knee.
    2011 — Had to spend a month in jail on a false charge.
    2013 — While riding my bike with a bag hanging down from the handlebars, the bag got sucked into the front wheel spokes and the front wheel stopped, I continued forward over the handlebars to the street, landing on my head–fortunately had a helmet on. Two vertebra in my back and a shoulder were broken.
    2016 — Tina left me (basically a divorce), much pain.
    Within the last two weeks, fell to the side and tried to catch myself using my arm and because the arm was straight I injured my shoulder.
    Within the last two weeks, slipped while walking up some wooden steps and scraped my shin, very bad. The leg is not getting better and now my foot is getting purple. The pain is not diminishing at all, a very strange injury.
    Every accident and set back is a lesson (seems as though I am not learning my lesson?) and then I move forward. Yet, too much loss and damage, makes me want to just give up.

    With my left leg injured now, and I can’t sleep on my right side because of my brain injury, I am having a hard time sleeping.

    I am not liking my life much right now, in any way.

    March 14–Still spending time until my court date. Decided not to go to the forest, just staying in the area. This time just waiting is the hardest part. But now, I wish I would have gone to the wilderness.

    Last night I spent by a lake, very nice, also very quiet. But, then the frogs started their mating calls–rebit, rebit (and no, I wasn’t attracted to the frogs because of their calls.) It was actually a nice sound to hear. As dusk came they quieted down. Then today I drove to a nice location on the gulf and was parked right at the water. I had crackers, feed one seagull, then about 35 showed up, yikes.


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