Resilience is a Good Thing!

The van is alive and well at the shop.. awaiting the next adventure!

Hello and welcome to the blog. First of all, the van is now fixed. I had ordered a new quick disconnect radiator hose on Sunday. Santa himself couldn’t have gotten it here much faster. The hose arrived on Tuesday afternoon and unknown to me, had been sent 2 day priority  mail.  (And Amazon said 10 days for free shipping?  LOL)  The shop installed it on Wednesday.

The job itself required a lot of disassembly but was not difficult… but doing it in 15 degree weather would have sucked. It was worth spending the money!  We have to pick our battles and this was not one worth trying!

The shop selected was Anamosa Automotive Sales and Service. They do work for Affordable Heating and Cooling, a company that runs a large fleet of Chevy Express vans. It was in good hands!  Any needed work in the future will go to these guys.  The rates are reasonable and they’re close to the home base.

Right now we are in the midst of a winter storm warning in Eastern Iowa.  I added some detail to this map of the warning area.  Note that Anamosa is in the bull’s eye of the mess.  We’re looking at up to 8 inches of snow overnight.  We already have 5 on the ground.  More is predicted this weekend, as well!  The boss is letting me “flex” the work hours a little to provide snow removal coverage for the restaurant.  It’s going to be a busy time!  I’ll get some good pictures along the way!

Things have been going a lot better this week.  The beginning of the year was  overwhelming at times but is rapidly improving… and not just for me.  All the while I’ve been taking care of a frail little friend and nursing her back to health for the coming year.  I’ve named her “Edna”.

Edna was rescued from a state park following a suddenly killing frost.  The large, host Coleus plant was destroyed and one tiny little sprig was clinging to life.   Confronted with my own health issues several times the last two years, I felt sorry for this little lifeform and decided to rescue her.  The last living bit of the plant was clipped and carried in my jacket through the frigid air to the van.  The clipping sat in a jar of water as the roots grew and the few leaves started to wither a bit.  But once planted, Edna slowly came back to life… even surviving several feline attacks from Jennifer.  With the sunlight getting strong she is growing quickly and will get planted this spring…  Resilience is a good thing!

Well, that’s about it for now.  The snow is coming down very quickly and I’ve got to punch in and help at work.  Thanks for visiting!  I’m not sure when the next camping will happen but there are some really tasty foods planned for a future outing.  As always, new recipe ideas are getting tried all the time… although most of them are lower carb and healthier this year.   In the meantime I hope to get some cool snow pics from the ground and/or using the little drone.

Take care and thanks for visiting!  Safe and happy camping, friends!  And thanks for the well wishes in recent days.

Brad, Jenny, and “Edna”
Anamosa, Iowa


About VanTrekker

I am a former vandweller in Eastern Iowa who, for several years (off and on), lived in a 2007 Chevy cargo van. I still travel around Iowa with my tortoise shell cat, Jennifer Stefanie. Our favorite place to explore is the Country Heritage Community, the four far northeastern counties of Iowa (Clayton, Winneshiek, Allamakee, and Fayette). Ride along as we fish in pristine trout streams, enjoy fine home cooked camping meals, and meet new people. It's all possible on a shoestring budget. Happy travels always! --- Brad, the "Van Trekker"
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5 Responses to Resilience is a Good Thing!

  1. Jo says:

    So happy the van is fixed now especially with this new storm your getting.

    Your doing a fine job saving that plant it looks great the color is excellent.

    You be careful out there

    • VanTrekker says:

      Hi Jo! Well, we only got 4 inches last night. The storm shifted a couple counties (30 miles) to the north and worst of it missed us… We’ve got round 2 coming tonight for a few more inches of show. But oh, it’s nice to have the vehicle fixed. It’s also cleaned out for the next camping trip in a few weeks. 🙂 Take care!

    • VanTrekker says:

      Hi Jo. We got LOTS of snow. I’m looking forward to a fun activity (with pictures) this week. Jenny got her first taste of deep snow. She tried to chase a rabbit only to end up in deep snow. She howled and I rescued her. LOL. Take care and enjoy the warm weather out that way! — Brad

  2. John Spoden says:

    I read your posts regularly but keep quiet and really enjoy your blog. It won’t be long and spring time will be here…less than 60 days…and those trout are gonna be soooo hungry.
    Drive slowly on that ice, I wanna see some big Browns this year..
    P.S. I sure do enjoy your food preparations too.
    WARRRRRRMMM Regards. John.

    • VanTrekker says:

      Hi John and thanks a bunch for the kind words! Spring is on its way… We ended up with about 8 inches of snow since Friday. There’s around 11-13 inches on the ground right now. Spring can come soon! On the upside, a neighbor approached me and said that another neighbor wants me to shovel him out tomorrow (a truck driver). There’s going to be a $20 bill in the fund for the next trip!

      Toward March I’ve got a trip planned to a very unusual museum a few counties away. There will be some kind of new recipe cooked up, of course.

      Thanks for the encouragement! — Brad and Jenny

      And yes, I’ve got some new maps and plan to go after some browns as well as bass, crappie, cat, and walleye. 🙂