The temperature in my hometown made it into the twenties today. The snow piles remain and will not melt anytime soon. Today was my chance to check on my Airstream and fire up the generator. When I arrived at the storage facility, I took one look at the deep snow and turned the dial on my truck to four wheel drive. I would not have made it to the Airstream otherwise.
I arrived to see my wheels half buried in the snow. After a bit of chipping away at the ice, the propane tank hatch and the Airstream door both opened for me. Everything looked to be in proper working order. I fired up the heater so that I could charge up the batteries and play with some of my new toys.
One of the great benefits of the online Airstream community is the collective sharing of knowledge. God knows I would have learned some hard lessons without the volume of information available on Airforums and the blogging community.
The online community is also an excellent resource for product recommendations. Many Airstream bloggers have recommended products that have withstood the rigors of travel. Airstream owners tend to be appreciative of design and willing to spend a little more to get it. Why else would they pay the premium to buy an Airstream. Since this is still a hobby, albeit an expensive one, I have relied heavily on recommendations from the online community. For instance, we chose our Yamaha generator after watching Sean and Kristy Michael's informative and often amusing videos at longlonghoneymoon.com. Since then I have been inspired by them and many others.
Here are a few of my new toys that I acquired after learning about them from fellow travelers.
1. Bialetti Moka Express Coffee Pot
This one is a no brainer. It is Italian. It is a beautiful. It is made of aluminum for crying out loud and has been around since the 1930's. The Moka Express is simple and brilliant in its design. There a literally three pieces to it. After heating, the water in the lower chamber boils and is forced through the coffee grounds into the upper chamber producing a dark rich espresso. For all you coffee nerds out there, I am new to the game. I started drinking coffee last year at the age of 39. Melizza coaxed me into trying Kona coffee on our last trip to Hawaii and a coffee snob was born. I don't know much other than I like my coffee black and rich. A french press would probably work but for now I am sticking with the Bialetti. It is way better than instant and is as stylish as a Vespa scooter.
I have seasoned my Moka Express at home for a while and I had my first cup in the Airstream today. It was piping hot and perfect. Unfortunately, I had to take it home for rinsing as the Airstream is currently winterized which means no water. Thanks to Sean from Long Long Honeymoon on this one. I would have found it eventually but I did not want one until he posted a great video about this little gem.
I have always wanted one of these but just recently pulled the trigger. I have a decent stereo system in my Airstream. It was definitely state of the art in 2006. I can plug my iPhone into the Jack and play it through the Sony sound system. For those of you younger readers, Sony was that invincible Japanese company that dominated the TV and portable music categories before Samsung and Apple. At any rate, the Jambox is a great product and connects to my phone via Bluetooth or a cord. The nice thing about this product is the fact that it is portable. I can take it outside and play music wherever I am hanging out. The sound quality is very nice on the Jambox. I chose the larger model and also use it around the house. Laura Domela from the blog Riveted recommended this one. She has all the cool toys.
This is what we used for the first four years of Airstream ownership. The asian broom is a great product but pales in comparison to the Dyson. It is much cheaper but it also made our dog Maggie mental every time we swept up.
4. Fuji X100S
I wanted this camera the very first time I it. It reminded me of the gorgeous Leica cameras but without the incredibly hefty price tag. I have never taken the time to really learn the craft of photography and it shows. My photos on the blog come mostly from my iPhone. Many are blurry and I am unhappy with the lighting most of the time. I almost never edit my photos before posting. However, this camera makes me want to be a better photographer. I have no business carrying this beauty around until I learn how to properly use it. In the next year, I will endeavor to improve the quality of the images on this blog. I have no excuse for bad pictures now.
Laura Domela is a fan of this product as is Sean Michael. I need to learn how to use this before I go to Italy in the Spring. Right now my photos look a little blurry. Any tips would be greatly appreciated.
Sitting in the Airstream makes me want to hit the road. I see post after post from Arizona and the Pacific Northwest. They all make me want to hit the road and head west. I definitely have the gear for it.
|Waiting for the next adventure!|
|My last blurry iPhone picture|