Wednesday, November 30, 2011

There's Been A Change In The Weather, More Pictures, A Movie and Shopping

DeBary, FL.

53 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast =
Mostly sunny. Highs in the lower 60s. Northwest winds 5 to 10 mph.

There's definitely been a change in the weather around here. After a cold front with rain came through the other night the temperature has dropped to almost 20 degrees colder than it had been. That's OK though, I just checked the weather up in Rantoul, IL., and it's only 28 deg up there this morning!!!


Jim took a few more photos of the park so I thought I'd post them this morning.

This first one is of the boat ramp / marina that you see as you come up to the entrance of the park. There's always a lot of activity here as it's one of the nicest ramps in the area.

This next photo is of the swimming pool area. It's all fenced in, the pool has a roof over it and is screened in to help swimmers avoid the bugs during certain times of the year.

This is the fishing lake and they ask that only children fish here, and of course it's catch and release, but the kids seem to have a good time.

This last photo is of a little "island" in the middle of the main road. Jim and Linda say that they put up all kinds of Christmas decorations on this little patch of ground so it should be real pretty. Also, do you see that road running off to the right of the right side of this island? Well, just about 20' down that road is where I'm parked, so I should be able to see all the decorations right from my site. ; )

Linda went to see a movie with Laura and Ashley yesterday afternoon. She said that they had a good time and really enjoyed the movie. (Sorry I don't remember what the name of the movie was) : (

While they were at the movie, Jim took CLT and headed to a new Auto Zone store that is just down the street from here. He did more looking than anything else, but did buy some molding tape to use to attach a piece of gutter, (that he got from Dan at Creative Coach),  over my entrance door.

From there he went to an Ace Hardware store and bought me a new smoke detector. The one that was in me was old and started going off for no reason a few days ago.

When he came back here, he installed the smoke detector and cleaned up the piece of gutter so it would be ready to install when the weather gets warmer.

I have no idea what's happening today. It's supposed to be cool today so Jim probably won' be able to install that gutter. (the directions on the mounting tape say it should be at least 65 degrees). Laura is working so she won't be stopping by, and there's nothing planned here in the park.

Hmmm!! Maybe it's just a "kick back" day!!  ; )

Did you know that the first truly affordable home smoke detector was invented by Duane D. Pearsall in 1965, featuring an individual battery powered unit that could be easily installed and replaced?

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Shopping, Eating and The Park

DeBary, FL

55 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly sunny. Highs in the upper 60s. West winds 15 mph.

Jim and Linda decided to some Christmas Shopping yesterday, so about 11:00 they headed out. CLT said that their first stop was at Walgreen's to pick up a few items, (not Christmas presents), then on to a gas station to get him a drink of good old 87 octane. (Also not a Christmas present). ; )

From the gas station they went to Kohl's store where they evidently had a lot of success finding what they wanted to purchase because when they came back here, they were carrying shopping bags filled with gifts.  : )

On the way back here to the park, they stopped at a little restaurant called the "DeBary Dinner", for lunch, I understand that they've been wanting to try it out for quite awhile but haven't had the chance in the past.

So, how was it? Well, Jim and Linda feel that they need to go back again sometime to give them another chance. First of all, when they got there, it was lunch hour and the place was packed. Then, they were having problems with some of the equipment in the kitchen, so quite a few of the menu items were not available. The waitresses were doing the best they could and were very nice, but it took a long time to get the food and Jim could not get what he really wanted. : (

To their credit, the food that they did get was very good and well prepared. I'm sure Jim and Linda will stop in again and give them another chance because they've heard nothing but good things about the restaurant.

Jim got his camera out and took a few pictures of this park. This first one is of the sign at the entrance.

Right after you come into the park you see the office off to the right. That little white car is parked where RVs are supposed to park when they first come in.

Off to the left is the Swamp House Grill. Their dinning room overlooks the St. John's River and is kind of neat.

After you pass the office and the Swamp House Grill, you go across a little bridge before coming to the Clubhouse on the right. This is where they have all the activities like pot luck dinners, Thanksgiving and Christmas Dinners, New Years Eve Parties, card games, bingo and other activities.

About a block past the Clubhouse, is where my site is. I'm just off of the main road and am tucked back in between a permanent RV on my left and another MH on my right. The site isn't real big, (not many of the sites in this park are very big), but it's big enough and really doesn't feel crowded.

There's a nice cement patio for the picnic table with plenty of room for lawn chairs and Jim's bike, the site is nice and level and there's a nice big tree to the rear of me that gives me nice shade during the hottest part of the day.

There's also a pool and a fishing pond in this park and of course access to the St John's River. I'll see if I can get Jim to take some pictures of them in the next few days. : )

Did you know that on this date in 1890 the Navy defeated Army by a score of 24-0 in the first Army-Navy football game? The game was played at West Point.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Groceries and A Leak Next Door

DeBary, FL.

66 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy early in the morning...then a chance of showers late in the morning. Mostly cloudy with numerous showers and isolated afternoon thunderstorms. Windy. Highs in the upper 70s. South winds 15 to 20 mph and gusty becoming southwest in the afternoon. Chance of rain 70 percent.

As soon as Linda was up and had finished her breakfast, she and Jim took off and headed to the Winn Dixie Grocery store that is just down the road from here. They were gone for quite awhile so I knew they would be bringing back a bunch of groceries.

Well, I was right and by the time they got all of them put away, my cabinets were bulging! ; )

Oh, I almost forgot!!! Before Linda got up, Jim was sitting outside, drinking a cup of coffee and spotted water dripping out of one of the compartments in the motor home that's parked next door to me!

Now, anyone who has an RV knows that water dripping out of a compartment is never good!! : (  So, he went around to the other side of the MH and told the couple inside, (Alan and Teresa), what he had noticed.

Alan came out right away and after some investigation, it was determined that the leak only occurred when the city water was turned on and not when the pump was turned on and they were running off of water from their fresh water tank.

So, today, Alan will call a repair place that comes here to the park to fix RVs and set up an appointment. In the meantime, they can put water in their fresh water tank and run off of that for a few days.

Nothing much happened the rest of the day, just normal things. I'm beginning to think that there may be days while I'm here at Highbanks that I won't have anything to write about, so if I don't post every day, you'll know what's going on.

Nothing!!! ; )

Did you know that on this date in 1925 - The Grand Ole Opry made its radio debut on station WSM?

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Allergies and Other Stuff

DeBary, Fl.

64 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly sunny. Highs in the lower 80s. Southeast winds 10 to 15 mph.

The weather here has been Chamber of Commerce perfect. Highs near 80, lows in the 60's, a nice breeze blowing and abundant sunshine. : )


Jim has been having allergy problems though, so he hasn't been feeling the best. Yesterday, he took one of those allergy tablets and that helped him a lot. The only trouble is, that they make him very tired so he slept on and off all day. : ( 

He knows how those tablets affect him, so he's sure not to do anything where the drowsiness can get him into trouble.

In fact, about the only things he did was to straighten up the back of CLT a little, sit outside under my awning and watch some TV.

Linda did more laundry, went through her finished embroidery projects to see exactly what was there, worked on her current project, watched some TV with Jim and made a pasta / meat sauce dish and garlic bread for dinner.

Very soon, Jim and Linda need to go to the grocery store, and before long they have to do some Christmas shopping. Maybe they can get the groceries today, and then work on the Christmas stuff this week.

A Point to Ponder : If someone can't see, they're blind and if someone can't hear, they're deaf, so what do you call people who can't smell?

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Not Much Happening

DeBary, FL.

60 deg. mostly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly sunny. Highs around 80. East winds 10 to 15 mph.

Not much happened around here yesterday. Laura stopped by for a couple hours to visit. The weather was so nice that she, Linda and Jim sat out under my awning the whole time she was here. ; )

Jim dug his bicycle out of the back of CLT, put the front wheel on and pumped up the tires. He and Linda were trying to figure out when he last rode it, and they came to the conclusion that it may have been last winter when they were here at this park!

Then, he took it for a little ride around the park. When he came back, he said that he was really out of shape and needed to gradually get back into riding it and also needed to do some work on the bike's shifter so the gears would work properly.

After that, he got out the plastic rain gutter that he uses to support the sewer hose when parked for an extended time at a park. Using it keeps the hose up off of the ground and also keeps it at a slight slope so that the waste water drains better.

While he was doing that, Linda did a load of laundry and worked some more on her embroidery project.

For dinner, Jim cooked pork chops on the grill and Linda cooked some corn and got out some of the left-over Arctic Salad, that she had taken over to Marv and Inez's the day before.

After that, it was TV again until bedtime.

Did you know that in 1942 - The motion picture "Casablanca" had its world premiere at the Hollywood Theater in New York City?

Friday, November 25, 2011

A Great Feast and Thanks Marv and Inez

DeBary, FL.

56 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Mostly sunny. Highs in the mid 70s. East winds 10 to 15 mph.

It was about 10:45 when CLT took Jim and Linda, (and the "Arctic Salad" that Linda had put together), over to Marv and Inez's house. Marv and Inez are Laura's, husband's parents, and they live about 14 miles North of here in De Land, FL.

Every year, Inez, (pictured below getting dinner ready, (in her "Pilgrim costume"), cooks a huge turkey and all the "fixens'" and has the whole family over for a great feast. Since Jim and Linda have been full-timing and coming down here to Florida in the winter, Marv and Inez have invited them to join them during both the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

What great people!! : )

This year, and many years in the past, Lindsey, (Laura's husband), has baked a ham and brought it over to supplement the turkey. Here, Lindsey is carving it in preparation for the meal.

While Lindsey was carving the ham, his brother was carving the turkey. In the picture below, you can see Ashley and Laura patiently waiting for the food to be ready, so they can get the drinks ready for everyone.

When these pictures were taken, some if the people were outside on the deck and others were sitting around one of the tables, so Jim didn't get a shot of everyone.  CLT says that he thinks that there were about 14 or 15 people there and one of Lindsey's brothers and his family couldn't come this year. : (

Anyway, it sounds like everyone had a great time and enjoyed a great meal. : ) 

I know Jim and Linda want to thank Marv and Inez for including them in their family celebration. It's so nice of them and Jim and Linda really appreciate being included.

About 4:00 CLT brought Jim and Linda back here to the park. They had so much to eat earlier that they just snacked a little for their evening meal. On their way back home, Laura and Lindsey stopped by for a few minutes. I had never met Lindsey and so Jim gave him the "tour" of the inside of me. ; )

After they left, it was TV until an early bedtime. ; )

Today, Laura is off work and if she has time, will probably come here for awhile. Jim and Linda have some shopping to do, but I don't think that they'll be doing much of it today. Neither one of them enjoy being out with all the "Black Friday" shoppers.

I hope all of you loyal followers had a great Thanksgiving. Please be careful if you're "out and about" during this busy season. Some of the people out there are thinking about the upcoming Holiday season and aren't thinking about their driving.

Did you know that the Pilgrim leader, Governor William Bradford, had organized the first Thanksgiving feast in the year 1621 and invited the neighboring Wampanoag Indians also to the feast?

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Guess What? and Happy Thanksgiving

DeBary, FL.

57 deg., clear, no wind.

Forecast = Sunny. Highs in the lower 70s. Northeast winds 10 to 15 mph.

Guess what???? The parts for my Aqua Hot furnace came in by UPS about 10:15 and Dan started to reassemble the furnace right away. Everything went together without a hitch and by about 12:30 the furnace was running and Jim was hooking CLT up to the back of me.

Now, Dan would normally have gone to lunch at noon, but because he knew that Jim wanted to get me through Orlando before the traffic became too heavy, he delayed going to lunch until he had me repaired.

Thanks Dan! : )

So, by 1:00 the bill was paid, and we were heading towards a gas station near there to get me a nice drink of #2 diesel fuel. : )  Then it was a short drive back to I-4 where we turned NE and headed for DeBary.

Just before we got to Orlando, there was an accident in the left lane which caused us some delay, but once past that, the traffic moved pretty smoothly all the way through the city. By 2:40 I was pulling up in front of the office here at the Highbanks Marina and Camp Resort.

Actually, even though we stopped for my drink and got delayed for the accident, it only took us 1 hour and 40 minutes to travel the 75 miles up here.

Once here, I sat out in front of the office while Jerry, (the park manager), took Jim around the park to look for a site that was nice and that I could fit into. They finally found a site but a low hanging tree branch had to be trimmed before Jim could back me in. Once that was trimmed, Jim backed me in and now I'm settled into site #198 which is just a short way past the Clubhouse.

So, this is where I'll be for the next 2 months. I think I'm going to like it here. Already, many of the neighbors have come over and welcomed me into the park. ; )

Seems like really nice people here. : )

Oh and by the way. . . . . I want to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!!!!

I hope all of you have a great day. : )

Did you know that the first Thanksgiving celebration lasted three days?

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Four "Ifs", A "May" And A "Might", A Great Lunch With Great Friends and A Surprise Visit

Lakeland, FL.

64 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy. A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms in the morning...then a chance of showers in the afternoon. Highs in the upper 70s near the coast and in the lower 80s inland. Southwest winds around 10 mph becoming west in the afternoon. Gusts up to 25 mph. Chance of rain 40 percent.

Dan, took my furnace apart yesterday morning and found out that there were some bearings worn out and the little 12 volt motor was bad.

So, parts were ordered and "if", (and it's a big "if"), the parts come in today, (One day overnight delivery), and "if" all the parts are correct, and "if" Dan gets it put back together and "if" there aren't other unforeseen problems, my repairs "may" be completed today, and I "might" be able to leave here today and go to to DeBary in time for Thanksgiving!!!  : )

Now, many things can go wrong with all of this, so I'm trying not to get my hopes up too much, but it's really hard not to. I have to remember that it's a very good possibility that Jim, Linda and I will be spending the holiday right here in this parking lot. : (

A little before noon, Jim and Linda took CLT and headed over to the Bob Evans Restaurant to meet up with their long time RVing friends, Roland and Louise. From what I understand, they had a very nice meal and a very nice visit with them. After eating and catching up on what has been happening since they came to visit Jim, Linda and me up in Rantoul this past summer, they all came back here and visited for awhile longer!!

What a great surprise!!!! I really didn't think I'd get to see them!!!

After talking for awhile, Roland and Louise had to leave as they had another stop they wanted to make before heading back down to Frostproof where their Motor Home, ( Big Herb), is parked for the winter.

So, today, we'll see what happens. Maybe, just maybe, things will go right and tomorrow morning I'll be posting on this blog from DeBary.

Did you know that age is a determining factor in the taste of turkey? Old, large males are preferable to young toms (males) as tom meat is stringy. The opposite is true for females: old hens are tougher birds.


Tuesday, November 22, 2011

One Problem Repaired and Waiting On The Second

Lakeland, FL.

67 deg. partly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Patchy fog early in the morning. A slight chance of showers in the afternoon. Highs in the mid 80s. Southeast winds around 5 mph. Chance of rain 20 percent.

As soon as Lester came in to work yesterday morning, Jim went into the office to talk to him. Lester was busy getting everything ready for the work day, so Jim didn't stay long. He did, however, tell Lester exactly what my problems were and how my furnace and alternator were acting.

Glen, (the shop foreman) came out about 8:00 and backed me into a spot along side of the building and plugged me into electric, but being that Lester had kind of squeezed  me into the schedule, no one was able to start work on me until about 2:30 in the afternoon.

It was then that Dan, (the head mechanic and the one who had done almost all the work on me when we were here before), came out and started checking out my alternator problem. It took him about an hour to find out what was wrong, and then another hour to fix the problem.

What was the problem? Well, lets just say that two mistakes were made, one by the mechanic where Jim and Linda bought me in Illinois, (that started the whole problem), and another one when my alternator was removed and rebuilt about a month and a half ago here at Creative Coach.

The mistake has been rectified and it will not cost Jim and Linda anything for the repairs. : )

After the alternator problem was fixed, Dan took a look at my Aqua Hot furnace. He finally got it to try to light and it appears that the bearings in the fuel pump have gone bad. He didn't have time to take the furnace apart yesterday afternoon, but by the noise it made, that is the assumption.

This morning he'll take it apart and find out exactly what the problem is. Then the parts can be ordered and the repairs made.

Now, that brings up another problem. Today is the day my reservations at the Highbanks Marina and CG begin. Needless to say, I won't be able to make it and won't know until the parts are ordered and the Aqua Hot place tells Lester when they can ship them. Even then, (from past experience), it's hard to figure out just when the parts will get here, and then be installed, so Jim is hoping that the CG will work with him and hold a site until I can get them there.

There's also the little thing about Thanksgiving. Marv and Inez, (Lindsey's parents), will be having a big meal that Jim and Linda are invited to, but unless everything goes really well with my repairs, we won't get there in time. So, Linda will have to call Laura and Lindsey and tell them what's going on and tell them that she don't know if we'll be able to make it or not. : (

So, that's what's going on here. I hope all your Thanksgiving plans are not "up in the air", like they are for Jim and Linda. The "not knowing" is the worst part, and they won't know for sure until the parts actually arrive and the furnace is repaired. : (

Today, Jim and Linda have made plans to meet up with Roland and Louise, (long time, very good RVing friends), for lunch at a Bob Evans Restaurant here in  Lakeland. They always enjoy getting together with them and are looking forward to seeing them again. They're wintering down in Frostproof, FL. and will drive up here for lunch.  : )

Did you know that according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, more than 45 million turkeys are cooked and eaten in the U.S. at Thanksgiving? That's one sixth of all turkeys sold in the U.S. each year.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Callahan To Lakeland and Orlando Traffic

Lakeland, FL.

64 deg. overcast, no wind.

Forecast = Partly sunny. Patchy fog early in the morning. Isolated showers in the afternoon. Highs in the mid 80s. East winds around 10 mph. Chance of rain 20 percent.

Being that the only place we were going to was the parking lot at Creative Coach in Lakeland, there didn't seem to be much of a reason to hurry, so it was about 10:10 when we pulled out of my site at Kelly's Countryside RV Park just North of Callahan.

From Callahan, we headed South on US 301 / US 1 and then US 1 to I-295, which runs around to the West of Jacksonville. Once South of the city, 295 re-connected back up with I-95, which we took down to Daytona. There, we turned SW on I-4 and brought it down through Orlando and here to Lakeland.

It was 1:45 when we pulled into the parking lot here at Creative Coach, so it took us 3 hours and 35 minutes to travel 211 miles. Not too bad considering that at times the traffic was very heavy.

One of those times was when we were going through Orlando.

Now, I don't know how many of you watch NASCAR racing, but the situation in Orlando reminded me of what it's like in a race right after a caution flag with only 10 laps to go. The green flag has just come out, there are 3 rows of vehicles running bumper to bumper and door to door. Everyone in jockeying for position, changing lanes with the hopes to pass the vehicle in front of them. Watching the race, you just know that someone is going to make a mistake and bump someone else, which will cause a big accident!!!

Well, that's the way it was coming through Orlando. You just knew that there were too many cars, too close together, someone was going to try to fit their car into a space that wasn't big enough and there was going to be a big accident!!

Well, we made it, there wasn't an accident as we came through, but there sure were some close calls!!! : O  Now, I know why Jim avoids Orlando when ever he can.

I hope the mechanic here can start work on me right away this morning. That way, we may be able to get to Laura's before Thanksgiving. We'll have to see though. there's lots of RV here needing work and I'll have to wait my turn.

Did you know that in 1942 the Alaska highway across Canada was formally opened?

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Cleaning and A Comment On A Comment

Callahan, FL.

54 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly cloudy. Areas of dense fog in the morning. Visibility one quarter mile or less at times in the morning. Highs in the upper 70s. East winds 10 to 15 mph.

Jim and Linda spent a good part of yesterday giving the inside of me a good cleaning. It hadn't been done for awhile and it showed. ; O 

Jim also dumped my tanks and filed up fresh water tank in preparation for going to see my mechanic in Lakeland, (Only electric hook-up there), talked to the neighbors for awhile, took a walk around the park, and cooked a couple burgers on the grill for dinner.

Meanwhile, Linda was doing laundry and working on her latest embroidery project.

Today we'll head to Lakeland. It's about 200 miles down there so it'll take awhile, but there's really no hurry as once we get there, I'll just have to wait until tomorrow morning before anyone will be around to work on me anyway. I don't even know if there will be an electric hook-up available for me, so I may have to boon-dock for the night.

I usually don't make comments on the comments that I receive, but yesterday, I received a very nice comment from Rod and Loyce Ivers, (some very loyal readers of this blog), that made me feel a whole lot better about my needed repairs.

Here's the comment that I received.

"I'm not too sure that embarrassed would be the correct way to describe that further repairs are needed. It seems like every time you move a motorhome, you need to take stock of what was broken in the process. Fixing these things up are kind of like that big drink of #2 diesel. Its just the cost of moving from point A to Point B. Its the cost of the activity in which we choose to partake... Your lucky that you have Lester and his crew to take care of all of this in minimal time, and probably minimal expense too as compared to folks that don't get the job done right the first time.... JMHO."

After reading that, I have to admit that embarrassed my not be the best way to describe my feelings. It's just that I know that I've already cost Jim and Linda a bunch of money, (especially with the tires that needed to be replaced), and I was hoping that I could go for awhile without having anything else go wrong.  But, Rod and Loyce are right. We RVs do take a beating, traveling down these roads and we do need a lot of up-keep and repairs to keep us road ready. And, I am very lucky that Jim and Linda know Lester and his crew, who know how to get me back in tip top shape again. ; )

Full-timing is a great way to live and it's really great to be able to travel all across this country to see the sights and visit family, but contrary to popular belief, it's not a real cheap way to live. Maintenance and repairs are needed just like they would be in a stix and brix home. And, in fact, sometimes more.

A Point to Ponder : If you decide that you're indecisive, which one are you?

Saturday, November 19, 2011

South Carolina To Florida and Kind Of Embarrassed

Callahan, FL. Saturday 11-19-2011

50 deg. scattered clouds, light N. wind.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy with a 20 percent chance of showers. Highs in the lower 70s. Winds east winds 10 to 15 mph.

It was another day of mostly I-95, traveling from Yemassee, SC. to Callahan, FL., and it only took us 2 hours and 55 minutes to travel the 169 miles down here.

We're now back here at Kelly's Countryside RV Park where we stayed at just over a month ago when we were heading North. The trip down here was uneventful except for some very gusty winds from time to time that kept me and almost every other RV on the road on the edge of our tires.

OK, I guess I'm going to have to tell you.  I've been putting it off because I'm kind of embarrassed about needing still more repairs, but you're going to find out sooner or later.

I have to go back to see my mechanic in Lakeland. : (  Yep, I've got two problems that need attention and they both need to be addressed before we head to the RV Park near Laura's.

First of all, that engine alternator that was taken off and rebuilt is not charging any of my batteries when my engine is running. Like I've discussed before, that's not a big deal unless Jim needs to run my lights and a bunch of electric 12 volt things while we're traveling. And even then, he could start my generator and run it to charge them. 

But, Jim and Linda paid good money, (and quite a bit of it), to have the alternator rebuilt, and it should work!

The second thing is my Aqua Hot furnace / water heater. It works fine on electric, but the diesel burner will not light and in fact blows a fuse every time Jim tries to start it.

Now, it has an electric heating element, which has provided hot water and heat, but when the weather gets too cold, (below about 45 deg.), the electric element will not keep up with the demand of the furnace. In that case, Jim needs to run electric heaters inside of me to supplement the furnace.

This has not created a problem so far, but if temperatures get down to freezing or below, it could become one.

So. . . . . .Jim called Lester and he was able to squeeze me in on Monday. Again, our plans have changed and from here in Callahan, we'll head down to Lakeland tomorrow so I can be there when they open on Monday morning.

Then, we're hoping that the repairs can be made quickly so we can get to the CG near Laura's in time for Thanksgiving. In fact, Jim has reservations for me starting Tuesday at the Highbanks Marina and Camp Resort that will more than likely have to be changed.

Hopefully, they'll work with him and it will be OK if we arrive at a later date.

Did you know that on this date in 1954 two automatic toll collectors were placed in service on the Garden State Parkway in New Jersey?

NC To SC and Dinner With Anna

Yemassee, SC.  Friday, November 18, 2011

40 deg. clear, N. wind @ 10 mph.

Forecast = Sunny. Cooler with highs in the upper 50s. Northeast winds 15 to 20 mph.

Got a really  s   l  o  w  Internet connection here at The Oaks at Point South RV park, so again I’m writing this using a word processor and will post it as soon as I can get a better connection. (Probably tonight or tomorrow).

It was as we left Dillon, right after a line of showers went through yesterday morning. In just a few minutes, we were back on I-95 and heading South. The drive down 95 seemed much easier than it did the day before.

When we got down to Walterboro, we pulled into a truck stop and Jim filled me up with a much needed drink of #2 diesel fuel, before continuing  on down here to Yemassee. It was almost exactly when we pulled up in front of the office, so it took us 2 hours and 50 minutes to travel 159 miles and stop for my drink.

Jim and Linda had been to this park before and knew that it would be OK for an overnight stop and a place for me to wait while they went to see Anna. It’s OK, but even with the Passport America discount, it’s still almost $28 per night to stay here.

Way overpriced in my opinion.

About , Jim and Linda took CLT, (Cute Little Truck), and headed over to Beaufort, SC., (about 27 miles from Yemassee), to meet Anna at a restaurant called Barbara Jeans. CLT says that they were in the restaurant for quite awhile, so I imagine that besides enjoying a very good meal, they enjoyed visiting with Anna and catching up on what has been happening in her life since they last saw her back in July.

It was about when they returned here to the park. Then it was TV again until bedtime.

Today, we should get back down into Florida. We’ll probably stay in Callahan, but I don’t know for sure. If you remember, there’s a park there that Jim, Linda and I like, so that’s probably where we’ll end up.

Did you know that Yemassee  takes its name from the Native American tribe of the same name, the Yamasee, which was the most important Indian ally of South Carolina until the Yamasee War of 1715? The first attack that began the Yamasee War occurred in the Yamasee town of Pocotaligo, today part of the town of Yemassee.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A Slow Day, Groceries and Plans To Meet Anna

Dillon, SC.

66 deg. overcast, SW wind @ 8 mph.

Forecast = Cloudy with scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms early this morning...then a slight chance of light rain. Clearing late afternoon. Highs in the mid 60s. Southwest winds around 10 mph... becoming northwest 15 to 20 mph with gusts up to 30 mph. Chance of rain 50 percent.

Not much happened here yesterday. The fore-casted stormy weather held off until later in the evening so about 11:00 Jim and Linda took CLT and headed to a Food Lion Grocery store and bought some needed groceries. By 1:00 they were back here and had all the supplies put away.

After Jim took a little snooze, he went out and (because the forecast for the evening through this morning was for storms and rain), dumped my tanks and put away all the hoses. The way it turned out, he could have waited to do that until this morning, but who knew that the storms and rain would be through here well before this morning.

For dinner, he and Linda headed over to a Shoney's Restaurant and had a sandwich. When they got back here, Jim hooked CLT up to the back of me so he wouldn't have to do it this morning in the fore-casted rain.

While they were watching TV, the phone rang and it was Anna. Plans were made as when and where to meet, and it was decided that they would meet her at a restaurant over in Beaufort, SC at 5:30 this evening.

Oh, and the stormy weather?  Well, the storms came through here about 8:00 last night, but here, we didn't have anything severe. We did have a little wind, some lightning and thunder, and a short burst of heavy rain, but the heaviest weather passed to the Northwest of here where they had a reported tornado.

So.  . . .this morning, we'll head down to a campground near Yemassee, SC where I will stay while Jim and Linda take CLT and head over to Beaufort to meet Anna for dinner. I understand that they did this last year and it worked out real well.

Did you know that on this date in 1913 the steamship Louise became the first ship to travel through the Panama Canal?

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Back To Dillon South Carolina and A Short But Hard Travel Day

Dillon, SC.

69 deg. overcast, N. wind @ 7 mph.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy. Isolated showers this afternoon. Highs in the lower 80s. Southwest winds 15 to 20 mph with gusts up to 30 mph. Chance of rain 20 percent. 80 percent chance of rain tonight.

Because we only stayed at the Rock Ridge CG for one night and Jim and Linda didn't get much stuff out, it was a simple matter to get me ready to travel again. In fact, even by taking their time, we still pulled out of the CG by 9:55.

We only had 121 miles to travel, and it only took us 2 hours to get to the Bass Lake Campground, but it was a hard travel day.

I-95 was good all the way down here, it was a nice bright day with many periods of sunshine, but there were very gusty winds, (which normally don't bother me too much), and the people were driving goofy. I don't know how many times cars were driving right along side of me and not passing. Then we would come up behind some slower traffic and that car would be there so that Jim had to slow me down, wait until a line of cars and trucks passed before I could pass the slower traffic. There were also a whole bunch of trucks that were traveling very slow for some reason, so we were having to pass them, when usually the trucks pass us.

By the time we arrived here in Dillon, Jim was more tired than he had been after traveling more than 3 hours the day before. : (

So, after Jim and Linda got me set up, he took a nap! ; )

We stayed here just a month ago on our way up to NC to see Mike and his family so I knew what to expect. This is also a nice park, but the area where the 50 amp sites are does not have any shade trees at all and it's really too close to the Interstate.

This first picture is of the entrance to the park

and this second one is of my site.

As you can see, there are trees in the area right behind me.

The people running the park are very friendly and with a Passport America rate of less than $20 a night, it's a good place to stay.

We'll be here for 2 nights.

Did you know that November is Banana Pudding Lovers Month?

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Finally, Mixed Emotions and The Rock Ridge CG

Sims, NC.

61 deg. mostly cloudy, SW wind @ 3 mph.

Forecast = Partly sunny. Highs in the upper 70s. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.

I Finally have a good Internet connection. : )

Sunday was another day of mixed emotions. Jim and Linda headed over to Joe and Nancy's mid-afternoon and spent the rest of the day visiting and enjoying the time with family. But, all to soon, it was time to say good-bye and come back to the RV park. : ( 

Again it seemed like the time just flew by and it definitely didn't seem like we had been in Virginia Beach for 2 whole weeks. It was great being there and I really enjoyed meeting Joe, Nancy and the girls.

Both Jim and Linda had started getting me ready to travel Sunday morning so yesterday morning there wasn't a whole lot to do so we got a fairly early start and pulled out of the Holiday Trav-L-Park a little before 9:30. The rush hour traffic was gone and it was fairly easy driving around the South of the city on I-64 and then taking US 58 West to Emporia. At Emporia, we turned South on I-95 and followed it back down into North Carolina to Sims and here to the Rock Ridge Campground

It was 12:45 when we pulled up to the office, so it took us 3 hours and 20 minutes to travel 176 miles.

This seems to be the kind of park that Jim and Linda like the best. It's not fancy at all, but is well maintained and clean. The sites are kind of "here and there", with no clear boundaries and many of the sites are not very level. I have one of the few 50 amp full hook-up sites and am in a site where you probably wouldn't be able to use a satellite antenna.

So, why do Jim and Linda like this park? Well, the owners are supper nice, it's very quiet here, there are a lot of nice big shade trees, (with great color at this time of the year).

It's in a rural area, with farms, fields and pastures, and it just has a real comfortable feel.

Oh, and the camping fees are reasonable, there's free wi-fi and good TV reception on my antenna.

I really think that Jim and Linda are planning on coming back here again and possibly staying for awhile because Jim walked over to the office and inquired about weekly rates.

Today, we'll be heading down into South Carolina, and I don't think Jim is planning on traveling too far. In fact, I think he's planning on staying at that CG in Dillon, SC where we stayed at on the way up here for a few days before heading further South to see Anna.

Did you know that today is "National Bundt (Pan) Day"?

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Reservations, Getting Ready and The Plan

Virginia Beach, VA.

45 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Partly sunny. Highs in the upper 60s. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.

Again, not a whole lot to write about. Linda spent a good part of the day yesterday doing laundry. Then, she helped Jim call the different RV parks along our route, (the I-95 corridor), down to Florida to make reservations.

They were able to make reservations at all of the parks that Jim had picked out, and now unless something comes up where he'd have to change them, we don't have to worry if the parks will be full. Now, I know I'll have a place to stay every night this week. ; )

Speaking of this week, the plan is to leave here tomorrow morning and start heading towards Florida. One of our stops along the way will be in S. Carolina to see Anna. That stop is scheduled, (because of her work schedule), to be Thursday evening for dinner at a restaurant near her house. Then, we'll continue down into Florida, where we'll stay for a little over 2 months.

Other than making the reservations, Jim started getting me ready to travel. He checked some of my fluid levels, added some water to my fresh water tank, and secured a few items in my basement compartments.

Today, before they head over to Joe and Nancy's, he'll dump my tanks and put all the hoses away so that he won't have so much to do tomorrow morning.

We'll probably leave here around 10:00. Much earlier than that, and the rush hour traffic will still be really bad.

Don't know if I'll post in the morning. I haven't had much luck getting on the Internet weekday mornings. Don't worry though. I'll get you caught up on my wanderings as soon as I can. ; )

Did you know that November is "National Peanut Lovers Month"?

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Cold, Anna and A Plan

Virginia Beach, VA.

31 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Sunny. Highs in the lower 60s. Southwest winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.

It never got out of the 50's here yesterday, and with the 30+ mph winds that were blowing it felt really cold!! : (  In fact some of the people who came into the park yesterday for the weekend, were wearing heavy hooded coats to keep warm.

Joe, Nancy and the girls were busy yesterday, so Jim and Linda didn't go over there. In fact, they didn't go anywhere or do much of anything all day.

So, I don't really know why I'm writing this post. I don't have much to write about and I'm sure you've got better things to do than to sit there and read my jabbering.

Oh, Linda did get ahold of Anna (her grand daughter), who live down in South Carolina and found out that she would be able to meet them for dinner someplace in Beaufort next Thursday night.  So, now Jim can call the CG down in that area and make arrangements for me to stay there for the night.

In fact, I think Jim is going to call a couple of other parks along our route and make reservations. Yeah, I know, he doesn't usually make reservations, but from experience, he's learned that at this time of the year, (when all the Snow Birds are heading South), it makes sense to at least call ahead to make sure there's a site available at parks along the I-95 corridor.

So, being that Joe and his family are busy today too, that will be the big project.

Did you know that Patrick Henry made his "Give me Liberty or Give me Death" speech in St. John's Church in Richmond, VA.?

Friday, November 11, 2011

Veterans Day

Virginia Beach, VA.

44 deg. partly cloudy, S. wind @ 3 mph

Forecast = Sunny and windy. Highs in the lower 50s. Northwest winds 15 to 25 mph. Gusts up to 40 mph in the morning.

Poor signal again, so I just want to ask you to take a moment to remember all the Veterans that served our country. Without them we wouldn't have the freedom we now enjoy.

Did you know The U.S. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed an Armistice Day for November 11, 1919?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Catching Up, Company, Bumming Around and Checking Out The State Park

Virginia Beach, VA.  Wednesday 11/09/11

48 deg. fog, no wind.

Forecast = high temp. 67 deg., sunny, light winds.

Can’t get on the Internet this morning, so again, I’m writing this using a word processor and then will cut and paste it to Blogger whenever I can get a signal.

There’s not a real lot of fog right here at the park as I’m writing this, but from all the reports on TV, the whole Virginia Beach area is socked in this morning with some areas reporting as little a .1 of a mile visibility.

Yesterday was a very nice day here. Jim worked on a light in the bay where all my hose connections are and finally ended up replacing it with a new fixture that he had originally bought for Myrddin, but never used. It’s not too often that he would need a light down there but now if he wants to hook or unhook a water/flush/sewer hose when it’s dark, he’ll be able to see what he’s doing.

He also helped Linda do a few things inside to get ready for Joe and Nancy coming for dinner.

Speaking of that, Linda put together a really nice meal yesterday.  She made a meatloaf, parsley potatoes and a yellow squash/onion dish. Along with that, she had sliced French bread and butter and of course, drinks.

Joe and Nancy got here around and as soon as they arrived, everyone sat down and enjoyed a great meal.

Joe had some work he had to do, so about he and Nancy headed back home. Then, after cleaning up, Jim and Linda watched TV for the rest of the evening.

Not a real exciting day, but a very good one. ; )

Virginia Beach, VA. Thursday, 11/10/11

55 deg. mostly cloudy, no wind.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy. Widespread dense fog early in the morning. Isolated showers in the late morning and afternoon. Visibility one quarter mile or less at times early in the morning. Highs in the mid 60s. North winds 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain 20 percent.

Got a signal this morning. : )

Jim and Linda took CLT and went "bumming around" yesterday. Their first stop was at the new Forbes Candy store here in Virginia Beach. Lind bought some sugar free candy, but not a real lot as the prices have gone up quite a bit in the last few years. : (

From there, they headed out to the First Landing State Park to see if that would be a place to camp while visiting Virginia Beach. Well, CLT says that for the most part it's nice and some of the sites are close to the water, but some of the roads could be a challenge for me, there are no sewer hook-ups at any of the sites and their rates are almost $10 a day more than we're paying for off season weekly rates here at the Holiday Trav-L-Park.

From the State Park they headed to a store called Tuesday Morning. It's kind of like Big Lots, or one of those kind of stores where they stock what's available and frequently don't have the same merchandise. Linda did find a few small Christmas Presents there, but not some of the items she had hoped to find.

By mid afternoon, they were back here at the park, resting and taking naps.

Then, for dinner, they headed back over to Joe and Nancy's where Nancy cooked a very tasty chicken stir-fry.

Today, is Sami's birthday so there have been plans made to go over there this evening for a meal and cake.

Did you know that Virginia Beach has 38 miles of shoreline?

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A Little Visiting, A Little Shopping and A Little This And That

Virginia Beach, VA.

44 deg. fog, no wind.

Forecast = Sunny. Patchy fog early this morning. Highs in the mid 60s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph.

Sunday, most of the day was spent with Joe, Nancy and the girls. Yesterday Jim and Linda went grocery shopping in the afternoon and then ended up at an IHOP for dinner.

Joe, Nancy and the girls were busy yesterday so they didn't see them but I think tonight, (at least Joe and Nancy), are coming out here to the park for dinner. : ) 

Jim spent some time yesterday morning going through more stuff and found some things that he's going to offer to Joe. If Joe can't use them they'll either get thrown away or given to someone else in the near future.

The Park here in Virginia Beach really emptied out this last weekend. I would guess that there's only about 1/2 as many campers here as there was when we came a week ago. So far, the weather hasn't been too bad, but soon it'll be getting pretty cold and I imagine that more will leave.

Hopefully the weather will stay nice for a couple more weeks so we can get back down to Florida before it gets too cold.

Did you know that the Great Dismal Swamp is in Virginia near the North Carolina border?

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Which One Did You Forget?

Virginia Beach, VA.

54 deg. overcast, NE wind @ 2 mph.

Forecast = Mostly cloudy in the morning...then becoming partly sunny. Highs in the lower 60s. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph.

OK, you've changed the clock in the living room, the microwave, the one in the bedroom, your wrist watch, the computer clock, and the one in the radio.

Now, I'll bet there's at least one more that you've forgotten about. Stop and think, is there another one someplace?

For Jim it's usually the one on CLT's radio. Sometimes it takes a month or more before he realizes that it hasn't been changed yet!! ; )

Of course for full-timers that travel across the country, from time zone to time zone, it gets even more difficult. Have you ever crossed into a different time zone on the same day that the time changed for daylight saving time?

Now, that can get really confusing!!! If you're going the right direction, you may not even have to change your clocks!! : )  Or if you're going the other way, you may have to change them as much as 2 hours!!! : (

Mid-afternoon yesterday, Jim and Linda took CLT and headed to Joe and Nancy's. Nothing special going on, just more visiting and catching up. And, I suspect that they'll be going back today. ; )

Did you know that During World War II, President Franklin Roosevelt instituted year-round Daylight Saving Time, called "War Time," from February 9, 1942 to September 30, 1945?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

The Girls Come For A Visit, and Scurrying Leaves

Virginia Beach, VA.

47 deg. overcast, NW wind @ 8 mph.

Forecast = Partly sunny and windy. Highs in the mid 50s. Northeast winds 20 to 30 mph with gusts up to 45 mph.
Coastal Flood Advisory in effect until 8 am EDT this morning...
High surf advisory in effect until 6 PM EDT this evening...
Wind Advisory in effect until 6 PM EDT this evening
Joe, Nancy, Sami and Amber came out to visit me Thursday evening. Jim cooked hamburgers and brats on the grill, Linda made a cauliflower casserole and Nancy brought buns and some salad. Sami and Amber seemed to really like me and commented on how much bigger is am inside than what Myrddin was. (Which, of course is mostly because of my 2 slides).
After eating, everyone sat and talked for awhile, but the girls had homework to do, so about 7:30, they left and headed home.
It was a good evening and I think everyone enjoyed the meal. : )
As you can see by the forecast above, it's really windy here. It started yesterday morning, after some showers and hasn't let up much since. At times, it seemed like the wind was coming from all different directions at once, and it was fun watching the leaves that had fallen off of the trees and were trying to find a resting place on the ground.
At times, the wind would pick them up and send them scurrying across the park in one direction, and then all of a sudden the wind would change direction or reverse direction and send them off the other way. Then, soon they were headed in yet another direction, going under and around RVs, trees, bushes, back and forth throughout the park.
Jim and Linda didn't go over to Joe and Nancy's yesterday. Jim wasn't feeling real well, (mostly allergies), so Linda just heated up some of the left-over pot roast from the other day, and they just stayed here and watched TV.
Don't know what's going on this weekend, probably more visiting and eating. ; ) Sometimes, Joe and Nancy are really busy on the weekends.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Getting Rid Of Stuff and More Company Coming

Virginia Beach, VA

40 deg. clear, no wind

Forecast = Sunny. Highs in the mid 60s. Southwest winds 5 to 10 mph.

Not much happening around here during the day. Jim did dig through the stuff in my basement and get out a few items that he and Linda are giving to Joe and Nancy though. You see, my basement is still very crowded and there is really still too much stuff down there, so Jim has decided that some of it has to go. And, if Joe and Nancy can use the stuff, so much the better. : )

Oh, Jim has been taking a few pictures, and even with the really bad Internet signal that we have here, I finally got a few of them to load.

This one is of me in my site here at the Holiday Trav-L-Park. As you can see, I'm in a section where there are a lot of nice trees, and my site is plenty long for me and CLT.


This shot is of the street in front of me, looking back towards the entrance of the park.

If I can get them to load, I'll be showing you some more of the pictures that Jim took in future posts.

Jim and Linda took CLT and headed over to Joe and Nancy's again last night. Tonight, I think Joe, Nancy, Sami and Amber are coming out here for dinner. That's great, I'll finally get to meet the rest of the family!!!

A Point to Ponder : If you tell someone they are being judgemental aren't you being judgemental yourself?

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Joe and Nancy Come For A Visit

Virginia Beach, VA.

44 deg. clear, no wind.

Forecast = Sunny. Highs in the lower 60s. North winds 10 to 15 mph with gusts up to 25 mph.

It was a pretty day yesterday, but kind of cool, especially with the wind blowing fairly hard.

I forgot to mention it in yesterday's post, but plans had been made for Joe and Nancy to come out here to the park to see me yesterday evening. So. . . . Jim and Linda spent some of the day getting me presentable so that I'd make a good first impression. ; )  They must have succeeded because by their reaction when they came inside of me, they seemed pretty impressed. : )

After they looked around inside of me, Jim and Joe went outside and Jim showed him my basement compartments, engine and other things that guys like to look at. Then, they came inside and everyone sat down for a pot roast dinner that Linda had put together in her crock pot, (that had been smelling oh so good for most of the afternoon).

After the meal, everyone sat around and talked for while, but all too soon, it was time for Joe and Nancy to head home.

It sure was good to meet them. Their daughters, Sami and Amber, couldn't come yesterday, but I understand that they may stop by later this week to see me. I sure hope so, I really want to meet them.

Did you know that the average elevation of Virginia Beach is only 12' above sea level?

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

North Carolina to Virginia

Virginia Beach, VA.  Tuesday 11/01/11

52 deg. rain.

Forecast = becoming sunny this afternoon, breezy high temp. 61 deg.

We left the Dickens RV Park on Monday morning about and once back to US 1, we took it up to the Raleigh area where we joined up with US 64. 64 runs around the SE side of the city on the “outer belt loop” , which is also I-40 and I-440. Once to the East side of the city, US 64 heads in a NE direction and crosses I-95 near Rocky Mount, NC.

At Rocky Mount, we turned North on I-95 and followed it up into Virginia and to Emporia, where Jim pulled me into a truck stop and bought me a nice drink of #2 diesel.  : ) 

Then, from Emporia, we headed East on US 58 until we came to I-64. We then followed 64 around the South side of the city until we came to I-264, where we again turned East and followed it into Virginia Beach and to the Holiday Trav-L-Park, which is about 3 miles South of I-264.

It was by the time we pulled up in front of the registration office, so including my fuel stop and a quick pit stop at an I-95 rest area, we were on the road for 4 hours and 40 minutes and traveled 236 miles.

This is a huge park with hundreds of sites but it’s not crowded at all this late in the season. It’s about 20 minutes from Joe and Nancy’s house and seems very nice, except for one thing.

I don’t have an Internet signal!!!!

Can you believe it? Right here in a highly populated area and I don’t have an AT&T signal!!! In fact, Jim and Linda only have 1 or 2 bars on their cell phone!!!

Now, they do have wi-fi here at the park, but I’m guessing that you have to pay extra for it. Jim says that he’s going to check, but doesn’t know if he wants to do that or not.

So, my posting of this blog may be hampered somewhat. I’ll have to wait and see what happens and post whenever I can.  

Last evening CLT took Jim and Linda over to Joe and Nancy’s for dinner. Jim and Linda said that between the trick and treaters they had a very nice meal and got caught up on some of what’s been happening since they were last here this spring.

Hey!!!! I just got a signal back, but it’s only one bar so I’m going to see if I can get this posted.

I’ll post again, when I can.