Healthcare Action Required

nullLast week, I received a letter from my retiree benefits provider regarding “Action required to Maintain Health Coverage for One or More of Your Dependents.” The medical plan overseers have suddenly discovered that they need to have me update proof of my dependents eligibility “even though your dependent(s) may have been enrolled in coverage for some time.” To that end, they have hired a “dependent eligibility verification service” who will gather “required documentation.”

The verification service (not the retire benefits folks) will send us a package with detailed instructions and forms to return for the proof required. The letter I received implies a veiled threat that coverage will be discontinued for dependents for whom no proof is provided by some arbitrary deadline.

So, in addition to whatever forms are to be filled out, we are obliged to provide photocopies of our government-issued marriage certificate and the first page of our 2016 Form 1040 income tax return “confirming this dependent is your spouse.” We have no problem providing the former, but the latter, which contains SSNs and our financial numbers, is off limits unless we redact the information which is non-essential to proof that we filed jointly.

We can’t be completely sure, but we believe that this new requirement of proof along with the 30 percent increase in spouse health insurance premiums this year, is fully attributable to the disastrous ACA (a.k.a. Obummercare), which should have had nothing to do with our health coverage. (Grumble!)

What’s For Dinner?

Smoked Brisket Dinner

I fired up a 2 pound beef brisket in the smoker this morning. I used a recipe I found on line for preparing the meat and the dry rub. Six hours later we had this wonderful dinner consisting of smoked brisket slices, The Better Half’s awesome potato salad and some baked beans. Clickable image.

This is the first attempt at smoking a brisket. I am pleased at the way it turned out, especially the smoky bark and the moist, tender meat.

I originally bought a four pound brisket and cut it in half so we could freeze half of it for another time. The half portion was more than enough for the two of us.

Classic Throwback Thursday

Shiny old classic

It seems that the old car guys around town like to get their classics displayed every chance they get. The Better Half and I attended an “arts and crafts” event in the downtown area last month only to be pleasantly surprised at several of the classic cars parked there.

I did not bring my regular camera nor the pocket sized one, so I made this photo using the Samsung Android Smartphone. I am still learning how to use the camera in it even though I have had it for quite some time. I tend to want to use a camera that is specifically made for making digital photos rather than an all-in-one doodad like the phone. I’m thinking that the streaks caused by the sunlight gleaming off of the shiny parts of the classic may not have been as prominent with my regular cameras.

Clickable image.

Rain in Monument Valley

Rainfall

The Better Half took the (clickable) image above of a squall in the distance as seen from our campground. We had a few raindrops fall here, but not enough to make the ground wet.

There is rain in the forecast along our planned route for the next couple of days as we conclude this trip. Both TBH and I welcome a bit of rain to wash off some of the road crud and dirt from the big RV.

We plan to get the RV to the dealer to fix some squawks and do some minor tune-up maintenance after this trip. The Freightliner Chassis, drive train and suspension has worked like a charm, but several annoying coach-related issues need to be addressed including drawers that don’t latch and come open during travel, loose wood trim and a broken mounting bracket for one of the window shades. There are others as well.

Nevada Northern Railroad Museum

Baggage CartsVintage Railway Express TruckMuseum Rail Yard

On our way out of town this morning, we drove by the Nevada Northern Railroad Museum, located in Ely, Nevada. We did not stop and go in, but The Better Half managed to get these shots as we drove by.

Left to right, we have some vintage baggage carts displaying the museum banner, a classic Railway Express Delivery Truck and the north end of the NNRM Rail Yard with vintage equipment. All are clickable images.

As we take this trip, we are on a faster schedule than affords us to spend some time visiting places like this museum, but we are taking notes to be considered for future visits to these areas.

Sharp Classic on the Road

Sharp ‘56 Chevy

You can tell from our posts on the other blog that we’re currently on a road trip. We have completed visits in K-stan with family members, both mine and The Better Half’s, so now the second part of the trip is devoted to go see stuff in the beautiful American West.

We were just into Nevada after transiting the Sierra Nevada Mountains when TBH spotted this very shiny 1956 Chevrolet Bel Air Coupe coming down the road. Even though we were closing at 110 MPH (plus), she got this nice shot through the front window of the RV.

When I separated from active duty with the Navy, my folks had one of these (in blue) which I borrowed from time to time until I saved enough to get my own wheels, which, of course, weren’t any match for the classic ‘56, but they got me around.

Concrete Monster

Interchange

We have purposely avoided coming into the LA Basin area since no longer having a house in the area, but today, we ventured across Interstate 10, past the I-215 and I-15 interchanges to eventually settle into our campsite for the evening. We must candidly admit that we do not care much for traveling through this area, but as mentioned on the other blog, we made an exception this time.

Tomorrow, we will head out for points north and, thanks to the advice from someone who is familiar with the traffic patterns, we will avoid the times and areas of the most traffic. Hopefully, it will be relatively painless.

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