June 8, 2009
Today was a day for getting ready for the trip. I got out our hardware cloth (wire mesh with ¼ “ squares) and, with the help of our neighbor Loren, put the hardware cloth on the intakes for our radiators to prevent rocks and gravel from getting in. I also put hardware cloth underneath the coach to protect the radiator fan from flying rocks and gravel.
I continued to inspect the coach and the jeep for stray ammo, finding one or two still in the jeep. But I am now convinced that they are all gone from the jeep. I will continued to go through the coach, but I am feeling comfortable that I have found any stray rounds.
Ken Adams, our tailgunner, came by and did a safety survey of the coach to determine if there were any maintenance issues (nothing to worry about) and to affix the stickers that denominate us as part of the Adventure Caravans group.
Susan spent a lot of time updating our Garmins and Nuvis with current map information. She also got a disk from Fred Berger our wagonmaster with notations on our route and places we will stop. Then she went into town to get supplies. I hung around the coach working on organizing the bins and visiting with Loren and some of the other folks.
Loren said that Soap Lake had an alkaline content higher than that of the planer Jupiter. I don’t know about that, but it did make me curious about the minerals in Soap Lake, so I went to their website. Here is how they describe it:
“Nestled beneath majestic basalt cliffs and rim rock slopes at the southern end of the lower Grand Coulee in Eastern Washington is a tiny inland sea noted for its mineral rich water and creamy black mud.
At the turn of the last century, Soap Lake was one of the most well known mineral spas in the country. Before the development of sulfa drugs and penicillin, Soap Lake and spas at Saratoga Springs, New York, White Sulfur, West Virginia and Hot Springs, Arkansas were Meccas for the treatment of disease, illness and injury.
The rich and famous don't flock to Soap Lake. Soap Lake is, and has always been, a destination for those who wanted a peaceful place to escape, away from the crowds, the traffic and the hurry-up. A place that doesn’t cost a fortune, where you can get a massage and a good meal, relax in the sun, sit on the beach or visit with friends and family.
Some day, Soap Lake will be discovered by the rich and famous. They’ll build a fabulous resort and take advantage of this absolutely one-of-a-kind mineral lake. They’ll hear about Soap Lake and its remarkable history. They’ll swim in the water and lay in the sun and know they have found a place that nourishes their soul as well as their bodies. They’ll be drawn back year-after-year until they decide to stay for the rest of their lives.
If you aren't rich or famous, visit soon, before the price goes up. If you are rich and famous, we've been waiting for you.
This afternoon was probably one of the most relaxing days of the trip. I had done all my chores, we weren’t planning to go anywhere tomorrow, the day was beautiful with 70 degree weather and sun, and nothing was broken. The Soap Lake Resort itself has several tall trees and a beautiful atmosphere. It was a good day.
Around 4:00 I joined with the rest of the group for our little get-together. Several people are driving up to the Grand Coulee dam tonight to see the laser light show. Susan and I saw it last summer and didn’t feel the need to go again. Two more folks arrived, the Stambaughs, who have just retired and have taken up full-timing. They are going to Alaska with us and don’t know where they are going after that.
Susan got home around 6:00 with steaks. I had told her to come home with something we could cook because we were cooking tonight. I decided to get out the little charcoal cooker I have. It is very easy to use—load 8-10 briquests in it, use a firestarter, let it develop for 30 minutes, and you have a fire you can cook steaks on. Susan seasoned the steaks well, cooked the fresh asparagus we didn’t use night, and micro waved her sweet potato that she has had in the coach for some weeks. We ate outside to a great meal.
Since I was getting out all of our goodies and I was re-organizing the bins anyway, I got out the lantern stand and my “Campfire in a Box.” The campfire is a metal stand with a metal base that holds firewood or a paperbased fire log upright. It creates a handy and easy to use campfire. When the fire burns down and you are ready to go in, you just snap the lid over it, put the fire out, and store it.
Nothing is scheduled for tomorrow. Wow.