Friday, October 23, 2009


Lake Marie, end of a 2.5 mile hike We’ve been at Skyline Wilderness Park for a week, mostly doing “regular” stuff: hiking the beautiful trails through the oak-covered hillsides, a round of golf for Odel, a little browsing and shopping for me, a trip to the Farmer’s Market, reading a couple of the books Margaret and Jeff passed along to me when we were at Collier Memorial State Park a couple of weeks ago.

I’ve been focused on technology, though.  First, I’ve been learning the ins and outs of the Garmin 255WT GPS that Odel gave to me for an early birthday present.  We had borrowed a similar GPS to guide us though a day of errands in unfamiliar territory while in Washington, and I’d researched them since then, ultimately deciding it would be too frivolous a purchase – so it made a great birthday present.  What I’ve learned so far: don’t throw away the maps!

Where is the i?  Where is the e?The big project, though, is replacing our still-working but VERY worn, 4 year old Toshiba laptop.  I am a touch typist, but Odel is a hunter-pecker, and he can’t find the vowels any longer - they wore off.

I wanted to do this in Oregon – no sales tax there – but the planned release of Windows 7 meant that retailers had let their stock run down to the bitter end.  Only the least popular units were still in stock and available for sale, so we’ve babied our current computer along, day by day.

A low tech solution to a high tech problem. It’s scariest problem:  with increasing frequency, our cursor freezes in place while the screen fades slowly, relentlessly to gray.  Sometimes a sharp whack on the side of the screen awakens it (for awhile); sometimes a readjustment to the angle of the screen solves the problem.  Gripping the screen edge one day to adjust the angle (with rising panic – was this to be the day it died??), I realized that pinching the frame in specific places seems to be the solution.  This is my low-tech fix – which has worked for several weeks, thankfully. 

So, time to retire the old technology and move on.   We’re not only moving from one computer to another – always a challege for me - but migrating from Windows XP (which I understand) to Windows 7 (all new to me) – a big, and time consuming, leap.  I spent many, many hours online this week, picking the brains of our “virtual” community.   With help from Rick (Rick and Paulette’s RV Travels), the Geeks on Tour, and the online forums of the Escapees RV Club, I finally feel confident about our upcoming purchase, with a very thorough checklist for setting up the new computer and migrating from here to there .  This is the ARRRGH side of technology. Wish us luck!


  1. You'll love Windows 7, Laurie! Just take it easy and get used to your new computer, then slowly begin the migration of data from old to new. Remember, just one step at a time, check it; then on to the next step. Good luck and keep us posted.

  2. Just discovered all your campground recommendations and really think you've done a fantastic job! Actually, I found it while looking for reviews of the Elks Lodges ... most are incognito on other sites. We left Washington October 5th heading through Oregon, California and presently at the Tempe Lodge. Will enjoy reading your future travels! Just upgraded my laptop for the same reason and found the same true in many computer stores ... not many options. However, did find some options at Fry's with free Windows 7 upgrades. Haven't received the upgrade yet but am anxiously awaiting it. Take care and keep posting. We'll be watching. Thanks again for all the comments.
    Wanderin' Class 2008 SKP

  3. Before you close that sale, do yourself a favor and google for the closest Apple store and if it's nearby stop in and let them show you the latest Macbook laptops. Maybe now is the time to finally switch over the the easiest computer to use.

    Just a thought...