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2:46 am EDT        57°F (14°C) in Mechanicsburg, PA

Calendar of Updates

Last Monday, I finished putting everything into my "new" truck and turned in the keys to my old one. I say "new" because this one had only 16,000 fewer miles on its odometer at the time of the switch — 388,000 to 372,000. I'm still sorting out an issue or two with this truck, but I can't say I have any horribly serious problems with it.

I tell you, I've almost got my entire federal tax refund check spoken for — and not because anybody is demanding money from me. Just this evening, I spent $60 on what I suppose could be argued to be "toys" for my laptop: a wireless optical mouse and some batteries for it and other devices, and a 10-pack of CD-RW discs. I spent a rather significant amount of time studying the digital-camera display area; again, the argument can be made that I don't have an absolute need for one, but given my recent (since early 2003) interest in highways and "roadgeeking," as it's called, I figure I can get some shots and contribute to the online body of knowledge. Though I made no decision as to an exact model, I've narrowed my range significantly; I know I'm looking for a 3.2-megapixel camera which will likely cost me $250, given the level of features I want it to have.

On top of that, I'm about to replace my current Verizon Wireless Internet service with a similar service provided by T-Mobile; the PC card device I will need to buy will set me back $250 after mail-in rebate, but I will save $50 per month on the service itself, and my coverage area will be vastly improved. (A partial list of problem areas I've had with Verizon, which will be kissed goodbye with T-Mobile: I-94 in Michigan west of Ann Arbor; most anywhere east of I-71 in Ohio; much of Bedford and Fulton counties, PA; I-85 for most of the distance between Richmond, VA and Durham, NC; the entire states of Arkansas, Louisiana, and Mississippi; all Interstate corridors in Oklahoma, the entire state of Kansas outside metropolitan Kansas City; and much of the I-80 corridor west of Omaha in Nebraska. And I can go on from here.)

A quick update on the sections I've been promising to add to this site: Over the last couple weeks, I've given up on finding the font I used to create this site's graphics in July 2000. I have located a similar font, and will replace all of the "top" graphics using that. It may even be a bit more readable. Anyway, I will start putting stuff together some time in the near future, maybe when I do what I will talk about next …

I have planned a "home time" for the first full week of May in "Da U.P.." My friend Eric and I hashed out as many details as possible earlier this morning, and it looks like it's a go. This will be my first visit to Yooperland in almost four years, and as Eric pointed out, I've seen both the Yooper winter and the Yooper summer, so now I'll get to see Da U.P. in da spring, or as Yoopers call it, "rest between shoveling season and swatting season." Right now, the only definite plans are to spend a day "roadgeeking" in the western U.P. and maybe spend a night, along with another friend, at his deer camp in western Marquette County. Other than that, I'll probably just look to get a lot of rest, and as I said above, maybe work on this site. I'm sure more than that will probably end up happening, but knowing Eric and myself, it'll happen at the spur of the moment, not because we planned it weeks in advance.

I haven't written much here lately for a couple of reasons. First, I have spent much of this month either up to my ears in some time-consuming side task or having to make almost 600 miles per day for whatever reason. (Just in the last week, I've logged a 583-mile day and a 517-miler.) Secondly, I can't say that I've felt down or depressed lately, but I've just had this unshakable feeling of boredom with life. Usually a change like updating this site would be a semi-exciting thing, but lately I've just felt like most anything would just add to the tedium. Could it be a function of being out on the road too long? Maybe, although I have only been back out for two and a half weeks. Am I realizing that I have bigger and better things to be doing with my life than driving a truck? Probably. It could be a number of things. As I said, I'd like to emphasize that I'm not feeling sad, depressed, or angry, or anything like that — just not particularly happy/satisfied/fulfilled/whatever.

Until next time …