Wednesday, February 8, 2012

To the Right Coast (don't worry, not the correct one)

Last Wednesday I hopped in a plane and left my beloved Spokane. It was hard to leave, but like my Father said 'Life is an adventure, this is just a new chapter.' The week before I had been packing everything. It is very different to pack for your car than it is to pack for a moving company. Everything had to go in boxes, everything had to be wrapped... The moving people showed up, things went well. And I packed for Pittsburgh.

Once in The Burgh, I got to enjoy some of my favorites including Pierogie Night with Gwyn, Sam, and Andrew, Pamela's with Skanda, ChurchBrew Works with Mrs. B. Jones, Mrs. Rohrer and Gwyn, and then Burgertory with Jeff, Bri, Sam, Andrew and Gwyn. I spent most of the day Thursday collecting information for my security clearance, I needed some files on my computer that was packed away, so that got lugged out. That evening we did some co-pilot training for Gwyn, she previously did not know how to drive manual, now she does. And she is great at it. Friday was spent packing up my car. I really wish Chelsea or my mom were there, they are great packers... It is the 'Georgia Hogle' packing gene. Every single nook and cranny filled, every space utilized. It was packed... and really full. I had to leave a few non essentials at Gwyn's house.
Hey! We have seen this picture before!
Saturday, my copilot and I took off on our vast journey east. First stop: Starbucks. Then to the open road! The road out of Pittsburgh was awesome! It was hilly and windy and great! It reminded me of driving to Leavenworth from the Tri. All the more reason that driving in western PA is like flying a spaceship, or riding a roller coaster. It would have been a lot more enjoyable if I didn't have all the weight in the back... :( just meas ill have to go back! The sound track for the trip was an audio book for 'World War Z' a great book that Andrew told me about, and I had finished the printed book on the plane ride to PGH, but Gwyn had not read it. I love the story, and the presentation it is great!

Driving was good. No problems, fun drive, lots to look at. It was overcast and lightly dusting snow (nothing accumulating). We hit our first destination after 5 hours of driving: Scranton! If you don't know the significance of Scranton, this means you don't watch The Office. Scranton is the location of the fictional Dunder Mifflin Paper company! I have been to the actual set of The Office in Hollywood with Chris and Cassie, but now I was in the town! And it was great! Gwyn and I both freaked out a little... then realized that the town is really tired and run down. It could just be that we drove through the tired part, we were only there for 15 mins... but got the iconic Office picture:
Watch the opening credits some time...
  From Scranton it was a short hop in to New York. The very first time I have ever been to NY! Sometime I should actually go to the city...
 Anyway, our hosts for the evening were none other than the great Mr. and Mrs. Evans and their lovely family! For those of you not up to snuff on Hogle clan lore, my Grandfather was transferred to Poughkeepsie while working for IBM. They lived there for 3-4 years (I never remember) around 1970 (+/- 4 years) and next to the Evan's. There have been plenty of stories from here, such as the monstrous driveway that would ice over in the winter, my grandmother's first experience driving in the winter, the legendary papier-mache Halloween costumes, summer nights in the screened in porch, and many other classics. For those of you who keep up to date with my blog, last summer Karen and her three nieces came to Pittsburgh for a concert and was the first time I had any contact with the family besides Christmas cards and e-mail. (you can read about that here). This time I got to meet the rest of the family! Karen's own kids, Maggie, Timothy, Kyle and their lovely dog Tanner. I also got to meet Lynn! the other daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Evans. We had a lot of fun sharing stories and laughing. Gwyn and I got to play around with the kids, they are all great! and so smart! I got to see some pictures of my family, including some of my Great Grandfather sitting in the house where we were. Mrs. Evans made us a wonderful dinner complete with 'Aunt Georgia's Oven Fried Rice.' A recipe that has been associated with my grandmother for a while, but she does not have any recollection of it.

The next morning Mr. Evans took Gwyn and I on a covert tour of my mom's old house. It was covert in the sense that the people who had been living there (since my Grandparents lived there) recently moved out. We managed to get in and took a little tour! It was so cool putting a place to all of the stories I have heard over the years. If your name does not end in a -ary, -onna, -erb, or -eorgia these will not really mean all that much, but here are a few pictures:
Yep... that is monster of a drive way.

I think this is my Aunts old room!

Me and Mr Evans. As he said, I am the 4th generation to stand there.
I want a screened in porch!
After feeling a little criminal, Gwyn and I set off for the State of Massachusetts. On the way we hit Connecticut, yet another state I had not been too (well I guess when we were over here as a family we might have taken the train through... oh well.)

I know you all know this, but New England States are small... we made it through Connecticut fairly quickly, and made it to MA!
Shortly after crossing in to Mass. there was a little incident. I was in the right lane of a 4 lane wide road, on the far left shoulder there was a large predator bird. A hawk or small eagle. He was looking in to something... possibly a dead animal, I don't know as I didn't really get a good look. But he was startled by something, and took off. Directly to where my car was going to be in 1.2 seconds. I saw him jet out across the first two lanes, which at that point someone in the car, I don't remember who yelled out 'BIRD!' There is an image frozen in my mind right before I blinked of a very frighted bird with its wings fully spread reacting to my car being there... I blinked, there was a very loud thud and a large smear from the center of my windshield to the top passenger corner. I have no idea what happened to the bird after that. We hope that it landed softly on the grassy shoulder of the road and picked itself back up again. After the adrenaline stopped pumping we stopped for lunch and inspected the damage. I was really worried there was going to be a bird stuck on my bike.... but no, there was just a giant mark to show for it.
We eventually made it to the suite. MIT put me in a suite instead of a hotel while I am waiting for my furniture, this means I get a small kitchen! Gwyn and I ordered some pizza and watched the super bowl! Neither of us were really all that interested, Gwyn was cheering for New England, I didn't really care. But we did make it!

Coming up: Moving in!


  1. :-) The start of a new chapter. You are a great writer and I could picture all of it, especially Goppy visiting Alda Drive. thanks!

  2. You have NO idea how much I LOVE your adventure to Alda Dr!!!!! I have been sitting here staring at each photo reliving moments from my past. While you got some great photos (thanks for the one of my room!!) I am really hoping you have LOTS more to show us!! While I can well imagine your haste given the covert actions ... you must tell me that you got pics of your Mom's room, the infamous hide and go seek bathroom, the living room with the parkay floor on the wall, the kitchen table area where we spent many meals pondering life, having family meetings, learning new vocabulary words, playing with the light over the table that was on a retractable type of bungee thing, etc. Quite honestly, I really hope you took pictures of every angle of every room ... including the basement!! My guess is you did not have time to do this .... but I can hope!!

    So glad that you made it to your new home safely and without major incident ... hope that birds' name wasn't Happy or Jose!!

    I always love your blog ... your mom is right, you write with a style that allows us to be on the journey with you ... I love that!!

    Enjoy making new friends, finding new places to eat, starting new traditions, working in a new place, filling up the new chapter in the life adventure book, etc. Please just don't acquire a new accent ... OK?!!

    xoxoxo Auntie Donna