Eager as I was to get back to the southwest, I took a week to visit old friends in New Jersey and eastern Pennsylvania: Gary & Linda, Paul & Carolyn, Karen & George, Gretchen and others. Then at last I turned westward...
Aside from a cracked air conditioner shroud* and a scrape on my car (gotta watch those gas station islands!), I made the three-week trip without incident. Home at last—what a relief!
* Tip for RVers: always carry a spare shower curtain. Lashed in place with duct tape, it can be used to make an emergency repair to almost anything on your roof: vents, A/C, etc. I use a Walmart clear plastic shower curtain liner, which cost less than ten bucks and takes up almost no space. If you ever get hit by a hailstorm, you'll be glad you had this with you!
August, 2015—Some things take a long time. It was a couple of years before the last of the estate paperwork was filed and the State of Pennsylvania was satisfied. (Fortunately, that was up to my lawyer; I just had to nudge him once in awhile.)
And it wasn't until nearly four years after Donald's death that I finally got to see a photo of the grave marker I had designed for him. It bears the skeleton of a fossil fish, Hadronector donbairdi, that was named after him by a colleague.
I like to think Donald would have been tickled to have that little "stubby swimmer" on his gravestone.