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Travel “Down Time” in 2015

After traveling for three months through seven different countries in Southern Africa, we come home and prepare to hit the road again. I’m talking about those maintenance visits like doctor, dentist, and hardware store.


A few months later, we hit the road and spend four summer months in remote Haines, Alaska as caretakers of the Bald Eagle Preserve. Although Alaska is not a foreign country for US citizens, it sometimes feels like it. Something about the pristine air and abundant wildlife draws us to Alaska over and over.

Eagle on chilkat

Back home after Alaska, and after several more maintenance visits, we prepare to spend a couple of months in Australia. But first…we need to drum up some travel money.

Tree 1

Enter the Christmas tree…unloading, cutting, drilling, loading back up, cutting again, and eventually tying with twine to the tops of fancy SUV’s in the Scottsdale/Paradise Valley area of Arizona. I even deliver and set-up trees in a few mansions. Anything for a sale. Sometimes we simply place the tree in the backseat of a sporty convertible.

Tree 2

Three solid weeks of bending and lifting takes its toll on our backs, legs, and hands. But we make it through in one piece, with a pocket full of travel cash!


First destination on the road…a stop in Albuquerque, New Mexico in a room with a hot tub! Then we continue our drive across the US for a surprise visit to my parents on Christmas Eve in the village of Mingo Junction, Ohio.

Yellow brick road sign

Let’s take at least one side road, the Yellow Brick Road to the “Land of Oz” where we visit the original house of Dorothy and Toto in Kansas.

Dorothys house

After a fantastic time with my parents in Mingo Jct., we’re off to the city lights of downtown Chicago. Yes, splurge on a room (1/2 price, off-season) downtown in the middle of the Magnificent Mile to start off the new year. Stay tuned…                       Ron Mitchell 



16 Comments Post a comment
  1. Skip #

    You both are “workaholics” and travel nuts!! but… I guess you could not be that “travel nut” if you didn’t work.. Love your articles, stories and photos.. Thanks for doing things I would never do…and sharing them with us .
    We do miss you both at the Gym… Bill misses Ron…and we ALL miss Marilynn!!
    Have a GREAT New Year…keep the stories, adventures, photos coming..

    December 29, 2015
    • I’m lazy, Skip. comes quite natural to me, and am proud of it! Marilynn is a different story.

      December 29, 2015
  2. Glenn Renforth #

    Yes indeed you guys had a most adventureous 2015 no doubt. One can only wonder as to what new adventures await you two nomads in the coming year. Whatever it is and wherever the roads may lead you guys we all look forward to seeing and reading about the destinations throughout your worldly journeys. May 2016 continue to be a most wondrous and exciting adventure for you both. Be safe. ( On a little side note : I also paid a short visit to the metropolis known as Mingo Jct. Christmas day to visit some very close and dear friends that I rarely have the chance to see these days. It was a very nice visit to go back to the days of long ago and talk about the days when we were much younger and all the great memories ; and to also remember those who are no longer with us. Also ; I’ve visited the Magnificent Mile a couple years ago and it was awesome. Chicago is a great town. Hope to make a return visit this summer. ) Have a Happy New Year .

    December 29, 2015
  3. Julie #

    Thanks for keeping us posted. We continue to look forward to “what Ron and Marilyn are doing next”! You serve as an example of how to enjoy a world full of interesting people to meet and places to explore.

    December 29, 2015
  4. martiwrites #

    I think you should adopt me. I could be a Jack tribute addition.

    December 29, 2015
  5. Ma & Pa #

    Exciting life for you guys.. just stay safe!

    December 29, 2015
  6. Hal & GA #

    Thanks so much for sharing with us! Georgia and I wish you and Marilyn a Happy New Year and safe travels in 2016!

    December 29, 2015
  7. Vicky #

    Thanks for the adventures this past year. Looking forward to 2016…Be as safe as you can!!!

    December 30, 2015
  8. Nice Sharing blog…It’s was very interesting to read it.

    January 5, 2016

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