There hasn’t been a lot going on around here the last week or so-no rides,no major trail runs with the new RC rigs (I have had them out,nothing unexpected or not normal,and since I have yet to print out the wedding pics I had no memory left on the SD card so I haven’t shot any pics,so no need talk much about it :P ). We have went a step or three closer on thinking of a new home (which includes making agreed-upon compromises on our differing ideals of how we wanted to spend life living,more on that in a bit),but other than that,it’s been “life as usual”,which is never a bad thing :)
The “differing ideals on how we wanted to spend living life”,at least as how pertaining to housing are fairly simple…the Wife has aspirations of moving up to newer and larger homes,I have aspirations of building simpler and smaller. Not really so much as “as far as the east is from the west” kind-of differing philosophies,LOL,but opposites indeed. For 22+ years,though,we’ve known that we were relatively opposites in most aspects of everything,but we’re the personification of the expression “opposites attract”,and we fit very well together,most often finding a middle ground we both make happy living in on most everything. Besides,where it really matters,she and I are one and the same person anyways (insert a big heart smilie here). This issue is no different,we found a middle ground where we can both be satisfied,if not blissful.
We’ve owned or rented houses as large as 2,500 square feet in the past,our current single wide mobile home being somewhere between 1,200 and 1,300. She admitted that the square footage we have here “will be plenty,seeing as one of our birds is a short time from leaving the nest,possibly”,but of course I wanted to go smaller…not quite “Tiny House Movement” small,but like “small house movement” (if there were one on-going),thinking that 350-450 square feet being plenty for she and I,but wanting to build/buy 500-650 square feet seeing as how currently both kids live in house/at home with us. So,we agreed to split the difference,and look for a home of around 800-900 square feet. With that solved and agreed upon,the next thing to think about was “what kinda home? new or used?” (note that with the Girl being a Senior in high school,and the Boy having made great friends and playing sports here,not to mention the Wife having a good job-note that I didn’t say “the best paying job” there,but those aren’t necessarily one and the same ;)-moving out of this school district wasn’t even considered,isn’t an option,so that much is/was easy).
As I’m too “disabled” to have reasonable expectation of ability to build our home (nevermind the expense of such)-not that I have the know-how to do such anyways-and not wanting to either go through all of the hoops and headaches of buying a house used (potentially inheriting someone else’s nightmare of a lemon in the process),and having spent several “moves” in “mobile homes” (including here,our last residence,and not the least of which our burned house oft spoken of being a “double wide”),and that buying one is akin to buying a new car (very little headache…basically,get credit approval,sign and drive away ;) ),we decided that would be a pretty good fit for us. Besides,modern mobile homes have a much higher quality than even our current home has (it’s a 1998 Clayton 14’x80′ single wide),and the pricing/financing isn’t outrageous high either.
So,long story short,we’ve started the process,and have leaped across 3 of 4 hurdles to buying one (gotten credit approval,decided on/picked a unit,an Oakwood 825 square foot 3 bedroom unit,and found a piece of land we fell in love with,2.1 acres just inside the school district-but out in the country,within our budget/price-range,no less). All that’s left is for them to let us know how much of a down payment will be required,and to see if we can manage that now,or have to wait until tax refund season.
Anyways,nothing more on that to talk about really,just a waiting game,so onto other,lesser things. I’ve finished reading a few e-books,and read 3 newly started ones on the Kindle in the past couple of weeks (on of which was a monster of a book,having 900+ pages in print form…I’ve been hitting/missing on that one all year,LOL :P ),and as it’s always inconvenient to read my basic-model,non-backlit Kindle while on trail/camping trip (needing exterior lighting placed strategically so I could see it after the sun sets),I ordered a shiny new Kindle Paperwhite from Amazon a couple of days ago,and am seriously considering the ordering of a 14-16 watt portable solar charger that I can take along with,strap down to the top of the tent as it rides on the rack to recharge as I ride. Sounds like a neat idear to my ear,as the Boy could also charge his Nintendo DS or tablet (on which we could potentially download movies onto to watch while camping,inaddition to the games he has on there). Yeah…..we like to “rough it”,hahaha :P
I had flirted with the idear of selling my Jeep (WHAT?!? :o :P ) and replacing it with a full size long wheel base van a bit last week. I should note,that at that time,I was travelling nearly 500 miles round trip for what I’d planned to be a bike/road trip to do some bike-camping over last weekend,but after making the drive it didn’t work out*. Anyways,I could certainly repair/fix the ole XJ’s cruise control and air conditioning,but at a steady 75-80MPH for 2-3 hours at a stretch,it will always be a bit (read:considerably…) loud,as well as feel under-powered on the interstate (it feels like a muscle-man off road,to be so close to stock,though…everything’s relative),thinking that I could use it as a mobile bike-shed (always having bikes with me,while still retaining seating for a minimum of 5 peeps),that it would be better suited for monthly road tripping,not to mention that it would yank our little 20’er Jayco camper anywhere we wished without even noticing it was there,all while at bare minimum matching (if not exceeding) the average MPG’s the Jeep turns in. Ultimately,I decided that while I do wish to buy a van for just those reasons within a year or two,I just can’t part with the ole Jeep…I enjoy it too much,and still have too many aspirations of offroad fun and over-landing a bit with it.
On the Surly Troll-front,I have nearly everything I need to convert it to dedicated mtn bike now,with the order currently being shipped from Amazon (note: had my trusty bike shop friends been able to match the prices I found to within 30-35%,I would have went that route,but they couldn’t). I have an Truvativ 60mm zero rise aluminum stem and Origin 8 Space Off Road II handlebars coming,leaving only tires and rim-tape for the new wheels. Pics…
Still kind of a roadish/cruising handlebar,but designed with mtn biking in mind,and I’ve ridden with “alt bars” on and off road before. My train of thought was that these could serve well on either long on or off road (trail or gravel),loaded or empty. Plus,I’m digging the all-blackness of it’s newest setup. I suppose I’ll run to the bike shop and pick up some decent rim-tape and get the new wheels ready for the new tires (which I will order soon*) to come.
Well,other than lots of day-dreaming of bike and Jayco trips in amongst the routines of everyday life,that’s about it for here lately. When I get the Troll parts in and installed,I’ll post up pics of it (assuming I remember to either print off those wedding pics,LOL,or buy a second SD card :P ). Happy Hump Day,everyone! :)
*I’m probably going to order up a pair of CST Heathen tires,26″ x 2.25″,wire beads. Kevlar beads are always lighter (plus they fold neatly and take up less space),but I’m not really being weight conscious on this bike…I don’t race,and I’m not obsessive about every gram like some riders tend to be (not that there’s anything wrong with that,I’m just not). Plus,I’ve found this tire on sale online for under $13 each (+ shipping),which is an unreal price,even for a budget priced brand of tire these days. I’ve ran CST tires in the past (on my much loved/missed Vassago Jaberwocky 29″er singlespeed) and were pleased with them (aside from the weight penalty they bring with them…it’s rotational mass :P ),they wore well,and worked well on trails I frequent. On malady with CST tires is they tend to be a bit undersized for the size (width/thickness) that they claim…the 29″ x 2.25″ size they claimed on the units I ran on the Jabberwocky were much closer to 29″ x 2.1″ in actuality. This wouldn’t be an issue,but the Troll has this sticker on the chainstay that reads “Fatties Fit Fine”,and I know it will fit 2.5″ to 2.7″ wide tires….skinnies look kind-of out of place on it,but I digress…..