Wednesday, September 12, 2007
Damiana has spent the summer in Guatemala -- and so far, so good -- no hurricanes have affected her. Thankfully for us, Felix turned south and avoided the Rio Dulce. He did enough damage, however, which is not good news. We left her in good hands at Monkey Bay Marina so we could return to the States for family visits and work opportunities during the summer hurricane season.
This summer has been trying to say the least. We started off staying in a residence hotel in Oxnard where Roy was expecting to work for the entire summer. There were two agencies involved, and in the end, his contract was canceled, effective 3 weeks later -- the hospital was going to close for several weeks for a mold removal problem. This was unknown to us and to Roy's contact at the Locums agency at the time the contract was signed!
The hospital in Oroville, where we spent last summer, had an urgent need, so Roy flew up there to help out. While there his brother, Jim, who had been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in January, passed away. I (Marlene) flew up to Seattle to be with Cam, Jim's wife, and after several days flew down to rejoin Roy in Oxnard where he finished his obligation to the hospital.
In the meantime, we had arranged for Jellybean to be brought back to the LA area to be sold. A delivery captain we met on the 2004 HaHa agreed to do the job and we asked Ray from Adios (friend in Mexico) to help out. We thought we had emptied out Jellybean quite well in La Paz, however that was not the case. Two carloads of stuff were taken to Minney's, a used boat gear store. Then a complete cleaning and a few coats of varnish were taken care of before she looked good enough to sell. We did all this stuff in a one-week window.
Ah, we finally had a breather and went to Vermont for a few weeks. Roy mowed and trimmed trees; I only trimmed! The high point in the Vermont trip was attending the annual family reunion where they bury a pot of beans in a hole in the ground (after a crib of wood has been set afire and drops into the hole), covered over and then retrieved the following afternoon. Everyone brings potluck to go along with the beans -- the "beanhole" has been going on since the early '70s. The following weekend there was a graveside service for Jim, and a few days later his ashes were buried. This was a hard time for everyone.
We arrived back in California in time for Roy to return to Oroville where he is at the moment. We'll be here until early October, then drive down to LA, gather all the items we'll take to Damiana, and fly to Guatemala on October 15.