Tagged with " Eugene"
Mar 15, 2011 -

Why Eugene and Thinking Ahead

I’m in this general area of Oregon because Thursday morning I am having a 150 watt solar panel installed by the RV solar experts AM Solar. Even before I had a rig, I knew that I wanted my solar system to be installed by them. I didn’t want to say too much about this because of the number of kerfuffles since I left Abbotsford five weeks ago, but now I really do believe this project is a go!

Once I have the solar panel, I won’t need to plug in every few nights. Even in this soggy climate, I’m confident that with proper electrical management this solar panel will mean a great deal of freedom for me. It’s a lot of money at one time, but it will pay for itself quickly.

As to why I am in Eugene specifically, it’s that I have friends who were able to put me up with a 15A connection and access to a spigot to top off my fresh water tank. I am so grateful to them!

Climate notwithstanding, I am really enjoying Eugene. It reminds a lot of Ottawa, actually, and the neighbourhood where I’m staying is not unlike the grittier half of Sandy Hill and the Byward Market where I lived and worked during my university days in the late ’90’s. I can walk to all the services I need and the variety of restaurants is staggering.

Here are a few pictures that I’ve taken during my walks about the neighbourhood:

My appointment with AM Solar, located in nearby Springfield, is on Thursday, first thing, and not wanting to overstay my welcome, I will be heading out of town after. I’d like to do five to seven days on the Oregon coast, then start to work my way back to Canada. I’d have two weeks to get there, so there would be no rush.

Now that I’ve experienced life in the States, I cannot view my RVing life in the same manner as before. Everything has changed. I’ve crunched the numbers and I can do six months here for the cost of four months in Canada, and that includes health and vehicle insurance and an internet set up.

So, what does this mean? Well, I need to start earning more money in Canada and spending as little of it there as I can!

And I’ve decided not to return to Yukon this summer.

Instead, I’m going to go into Alberta, even if it means facing the brutal dregs of winter. I simply cannot afford to set up residence in BC. I want to get over the border and find work as close to the Montana border as possible.

Up until a few months ago, I just didn’t see myself being able to work for someone else again, but now I would welcome a steady stream of income. I could get that in Yukon, of course, but it’ll cost $1,500 to get up there, money I’d rather spend exploring this part of the US that is new to me.

I’ve been growing increasingly bitter about Canadian rules that dictate how I can live and now I have something else to focus on: enthusiasm for learning what I can do to conform to US laws so as to be allowed the continued privilege of vacationing here.


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Alberta, Canada, Electricity, Finances, Itineraries, Law and Government, Musings, Oregon, Personal, Scheming, Solar Panels, Technical, Travel, USA, Work, Yukon    4 Comments
Mar 12, 2011 -

Fisherman’s Market, Eugene

Joan took me out for dinner tonight. She was in the mood for fish, so she took me to the Fisherman’s Market, a working fish store that also serves meals.

I had the cod and chips. The cod was exceptionally good; one of the best fried fish meals I’ve ever had. I rarely eat more than 5% of fish & chip batter and I ate all of it tonight! The batter was crisp, non-greasy, and did not have that icky taste of old oil. The chips were what I call ‘waffle-types’ and very good, with the skin on them. The meal came with a creamy honey-poppy seed coleslaw that was disappointingly bland. I also had the choice of two tartar dipping sauces, but I don’t like mayo so I asked for lemon and was given a several slices of the fruit instead.

This restaurant is yet another case of being grateful for a local guide. Thanks for dinner, Joan!

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Oregon, Restaurants, Travel, USA    4 Comments
Mar 11, 2011 -

Drum Rong Thai Street Food, Eugene

My hosts made a point to show me a Thai food vendor at the busy intersection of 6th and Blair. Housed in a brightly painted trailer, they serve up a varied menu for the fixed price of $6.50.

I haven’t had pad thai since Skagway and didn’t realise how much I was craving it until I had the noodles sitting in front of me at home! Pad thai was a comfort food for me for the better part of a decade. There were two Ottawa restaurants I’d hit, depending on the neighbourhood I was in, and also a summer street vendor at an outdoor market near where I worked in Gatineau. It’s not a food for which I have any sort of educated opinion; I just know what I like. It can’t be too eggy or fishy, and ketchupy (ew, thai restaurant off of Jarvis in Toronto!) is out of the question. I want nice gummy noodles that make me go “YUM!”

And that’s what Drum Rong Thai Street Food in Eugene serves up. I had a most satisfactory mild tofu pad thai with hints of basil and lemon, and a savoury homemade tamarind sauce. If I lived here, I’d be eating there two or three times a week.

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Oregon, Restaurants, Travel, USA    2 Comments