Galley Wench Tales

Exploring the world through the people we meet
and the food they eat.

Shiva kitty climbing Julene’s lanai screen.
Shiva’s an agile climber, she can make it up to the ceiling with ease.

It would be an understatement to say we’ve been lucky. We were wondering what to do when our boat sold when our friend Julene at Sunnier Palms offered up her place while she was going traveling for a couple of months. All we had to do was hang out in our favorite place, feed and love up Julene’s adorable kitten Shiva, and if a hurricane came make sure everything was as tucked away as possible.

Amazingly, when you open the lanai door
Shiva will poke her head into opening
to greet you, but make no attempt to bolt.

Julene took Shiva in as a stray. When we came to house-sit, Shiva was thirteen weeks old. Now, at over five months old, she’s had her first heat; we’d consider her a cat, though still adorable. We asked the vet if Shiva would still be able to climb the lanai screens if she got her toenails trimmed. Yep, they said with conviction, giving me the sense that lanai climbing kitties are not at all unique to the area.

This is what we’re hoping to find on our road trip starting in a little over a week.
Photo credit: Taryn Elliot from Pexels pexels-taryn-elliott-5182568.jpeg

Next week Julene returns and we plan to head north for a month, chasing the fall foliage along the east coast.  We’re pretty psyched about the trip; we expect to see the foliage in peak season according to this interactive fall foliage map link sent to us from our friend Jay via Facebook.

But with our boat sold, what were we going to do after that? We have an offer in on a place at Sunnier, but it won’t be available until December, if not later. Folks at Sunnier suggested we ask “Farmer Rick” about borrowing his RV. His RV was stored in Sunnier’s storage yard.

Home as of November. Our road trip in October will be by car, not RV.

We’ve never met Rick, but with his permission, Sunnier management gave us his phone number. We called. “Sure,” he said, “You’re welcome to borrow my RV.

We’ll find a way to make it up to you, we promised.

 Don’t worry about it, he told us, saying he looked forward to meeting us once he made the trek down from his farm in Vermont.

Power cord for Rick’s RV. Since fixed, courtesy’s Wayne’s electrical skills.

Rick’s RV sat for two years unused in Sunnier’s storage area. The solar charger for it got disconnected, leaving it with a dead battery. Yup, we’re on our way for finding ways to make Rick glad he loaned us his RV, which is quite nice and roomy, with lots of storage. We’re already setting Rick’s trailer up so that when Julene returns all our stuff will be out and her place will feel like home to her again.

Sunrise seen from Julene’s front yard. Home sweet home . . . for one more week.

We hope Julene won’t be too horrified at the changes while Shiva was under our care. We believe Shiva’s mohawk with chartreuse and fuschia dye looks quite fetching on her. Okay, maybe we didn’t play hairdresser with Shiva, and we swear we didn’t teach her to climb the lanai screens and even broke her of the habit of getting on kitchen countertops. However, we are guilty of her new love affair with ice cubes (which she plans to take to the next level by requesting tuna daiquiris for breakfast), and her field hockey talent, honed by playing with bottle caps. 

Shiva still bites, but much less often and much more gently.
Julene could relate to this, and so can we.

“Couldn’t she learn some kind of a non-kill game?” Wayne asked. “How about a nice game of chess?” he added, channeling War Games.

All kidding aside, we’re really gonna miss Shiva. We kinda fell in love with her.
When we return to Sunnier, we’ll be in lot 51 (which we plan to rename Area 51), which we figure means more miracles may happen, this time, perhaps from aliens. Like Shiva, we’re counting on them being friendly.
Is this what will happen to our campsite in Area 51, Sunnier Palms, Fort Pierce, Florida?
Photo credit F. Delventhal,

Meanwhile, the other night (September 15th), our neighbors at Sunnier flagged us down to see the SpaceX Inspiration 4 launch take off and watch the first stage rocket separation. 

SpaceX Inspiration 4 rocket with four civilian passengers.
Photo credit John Karuas.
I can’t claim my fall foliage photos will be as spectacular as John Karuas’ SpaceX photos, but I’m betting if you watch this space for future posts. we’ll find something pretty enough to make it worth your while