Nine years ago today (Tuesday Nov. 2nd, 2004; election day) I was still in Lancaster, California. All my possessions had been loaded into a moving van the day before. I slept on the floor of my vacated mobilehome. Before leaving the area that had been my home for forty years, I voted. ~~ (Tuesday, Nov. 5th, 2013; election day.)
I traveled as fast as I could across the United States (over 2,000 miles) in my little KIA Spectra. I encountered weather hazards, construction and accidents that delayed me for hours!! I barely arrived in Brookville, Ohio, before the moving van! I was exhausted, and stressed–and had phoned friends to keep me in their prayers.
Boxes of family history had been marked and loaded last into the moving van. They were unloaded first at the rear of the Brethren Heritage Center (in Brookville, Ohio). Over fifty apple boxes (and other sturdy containers) of FRANTZ, and collateral lines, genealogy. Also microfiche reader, computer, printers, cork boards, white boards, large picture frames, office supplies, and more items too numerous to list.
The remainder (on the moving van) was moved into a nearby storage facility. I did not have an apartment yet. ~~ The moving expenses were paid-in-full but I wanted to recoup the expense. I was hired as a holiday temporary employee at Sam’s Club. After Christmas I was hired by a new Walmart opening in Englewood, Ohio. I was there for eighteen months.
I moved to Ohio fully believing I’d be a volunteer at the Brethren Heritage Center. I was thoroughly qualified and would have been an asset. My enthusiasm, energy, knowledge and a few other things (but that’s another story) were an obstacle.
In October 2006 I moved my possessions from an apartment to a storage facility. (I rented one large enough for my KIA Spectra.) I was crying uncontrollably as I drove out of Brookville en route to Shelby, North Carolina. This trip was in my Dodge Class B mini-motorhome, pulling a small cargo trailer.
The Woman’s Retreat at Hallelujah Acres (HA) was my destination–and it was wonderful!! I had been trained by Hallelujah Acres as a Health Minister many years earlier and had taught (and lived) the concept in California. ~~ I became acquainted with the manager of the HA Resource Center and she encouraged me to apply for a job. Repeatedly (every time she asked) I said “They wouldn’t want this old lady.” To please her, I applied and was hired within hours. First I was using my computer skills in the Call Center. Later I had multiple jobs from prep for seminars and conferences, proof reading magazine prior to publication, contact with folks interested in buying homes in the planned community adjacent to HA–and work in the kitchen when short-handed.
You’ve heard the old saying “Best laid schemes of mice and men“?? I had every intention of bringing my many moves up to the present. I was able to handwrite the above thoughts while doing my laundry (on Tuesday at the RV Park laundry room). Since then I have been as busy as that proverbial “one arm paperhanger.” ~~ It is after seven o’clock, Friday evening, Nov. 8th, as I endeavor to post this blog. Have patience because additional details will be forthcoming.
Our economy took a dive in 2008-09 and HA suffered tremendously. If people are out of work they won’t schedule to attend seminars or conferences. They may buy their nutritional supplements from another source rather than “top dollar” with an agency dedicated to health and nutrition. Interest in the planned community ceased!! Fewer meals were served in the cafe. Fifty employees lost their job in a few short months. I remained in Shelby but felt lost without “purpose” in my life.
One unique experience: I was an “extra” for the movie Blood Done Sign My Name. Shelby was chosen because of the old-time downtown buildings and court-house. The movie depicts a true story from 1970. I met the author, Timothy B. Tyson, and his father (prominent figure in the narrative) and bought a copy of the book. We (extras) sat around for hours before and after our scene, and then numerous retakes, but I met interesting people and appreciated a view of the mechanics of film making.
Bored with inactivity while searching for another job (to qualify for unemployment) –and restless to do some traveling–I bought a Little Guy Teardrop Trailer. I documented my experiences in a blog titled In My Humble Opinion. ~~ Because of the rewarding, busy schedule with Hallelujah Acres, and no travel, I sold my mini-motorhome. (Had I known the job would cease, I would **never** have parted with my much-loved RV!!) ~~ On one trip, in Northern Indiana, I saw the T@B parked along the highway–with a “for sale” sign–and stopped…, and phoned…, and later purchased. Check TabTeardropTrailerTravels for details.
I lived in a nice two bedroom apartment on the outskirts of Shelby. There was a large grassy area in front of my unit; I looked across at a charming little country church. BUT there was a constant turnover of tenants in the adjoining apartment. Without exception, the new resident was a smoker and I am very, very sensitive to odors. I repeatedly asked the owner “please do not rent to a smoker.” In December 2009 a single woman moved in next door and (you guessed it) she was a smoker (exceptionally heavy smoker). In January 2010 her son and daughter-in-law moved in and they, too, were smokers. I recognized that it was time to pack up and move on. ~~ A PODS container was delivered near the end of March and my possessions were crammed it. ~~ At the first of April I moved–with my T@B–a few miles to the home of friends and parked in their orchard (with long electric cord providing power). I spent several days completing my Income Taxes.
Monday, Nov. 11, 7:00 PM: To repeat myself, “I’ve been busier than the proverbial one arm paperhanger.” I get a free RV site, and meals, but we really work hard. I will eventually bring this blog message up-to-the-minute with “reflections” of job and travel experiences for the past nine years. Until then, see an image of me for the CARE “rogue’s gallery” of volunteers.
Friday, Nov. 22, 2013, 7:00 PM: Please forgive me?! There just aren’t enough hours in the day for volunteering and preparing my blog messages. Furthermore, I have had problems with my laptop computer. I’ve worked for hours (for days) trying to resolve the situation. Finally, earlier this evening I removed the cache and cookies and am able to download pictures again, and insert clip art.
I’ve had (IMHO) too many problems lately. 1) I’ve had an ongoing battle with the credit card for TJMaxx/Marshalls/Home Goods. I disputed the charge in July and was assured they would work on the dispute. Since arriving in Texas, I received a statement with the charge, late fee, and interest (now exceeding $300.). I used the pay phone in the Escapee RV Park (a tiny closet that was hot as a sauna), fed quarters into the phone as I was cut off during multiple transfers. Bottom line: A letter today confirms what I was told on the phone “Contact the retailer for a refund.” NOT MY CHARGE but I’m forced to contact the retailer for a refund. 2) My MasterCard was canceled because (according to my bank) it had been “compromised.” Still no new credit card. Furthermore, my bank (5th/3rd) was supposed to transfer the money in my Broker Account to my Savings Account three months ago –and still not done!! 3) Amica Insurance approaches things different in Texas (from North Carolina) and I still have not met all their requirements. 4) The TracFone Nightmare described in another blog message.
On the positive side: I put a deposit on an old trailer that may eventually be my “forever home.” ~~ I’m getting excited (again) about gardening. Now I’m researching Garden Towers that produce a lot of organic veggies in a small amount of space. ~~ Today I received confirmation that my application for CARE residency was approved.