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Turning Around

Having spent a fun-filled month with the Travaglinos of Fulltime Family fame, we headed on with our original plans to go east and up the coast. Occasionally we have dates to contend with- meet-ups with family or friends, scheduled events, etc. that loosely tailor our overall plans. We have a couple of those coming up- meeting up with Chris’ parents in Hilton Head, SC at the end of April (yay!) and the beginning of our seasonal site in NH on May 15th. Everything else is up for grabs.

So we begin to head leisurely in the direction of east. I am feeling the need again for some natural beauty and peaceful isolation so we head to a Corps of Engineers campground (aka- peaceful isolation) on the Florida/Georgia border. A few hours’ drive and the best spot in the campground happened to open up just as we were pulling in. It was available for two nights only (we were thinking 3-4) but I’m not one to look a gift horse in the mouth. Done- corner spot on the lake with a pair of Canadian geese as neighbors.

Camera Roll-28

After setting everything up in our beautiful new yard, we find the Verizon data signal is abysmal and drum roll… that night our fridge dies. The data signal is so bad it takes Chris most of the night to troubleshoot the fridge issue. By morning he’s narrowed it down to the cooling whatcha-hoozie which is about $1,000 to replace. What the what?! He’s been saying all along that a residential fridge will be the successor when this one dies. At about $500 for a whole new residential fridge, we decide to go that route. But there’s the matter of putting it in… There was door frame measuring, current fridge measuring, comparing online measurements of new fridges and several calls to his buddy Chris Travaglino. They decide they can put it in together.

With my ice box (box with ice in it trying to keep my frozen meat frozen) in tow, we turn around and head back to Alabama for some more time with friends and a new fridge.

 
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Posted by on April 8, 2013 in Alabama, Florida, RV, Travel log

 

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We’re Still Here (WTF)

Don’t get me wrong, we’ve had an awesome week.  But Texas seems to have swallowed us.  And we want out. 

We’ve reconnected with old friends and quickly created old friends out of new ones.  The kids have been playing, creating, learning, and adventuring.  We’ve had thoughtful discussions on every topic under the sun.  I’ll blog on all of that soon.  But we’re still in Texas.

After 3 false starts to our far-reaching adventures, I’m ready to crawl into a hole.  Optimism, frustration, sadness, hope, and anger have turned into a numb cloud.  When we arrived in DFW after the completion of the veg conversion last week, our tow car was covered in oil residue (nasty).  Chris began surveying under the RV and noticed a big oil mess.  That’s the technical way of saying he had no idea what he was looking at but knew it wasn’t good.  He called, researched, and looked around in there with friends who had equally little knowledge of engine workings.  He was determined to find the source of the leak.  Lo and behold some new friends of ours called to say they’d like to come visit.  Joseph Duchene – esteemed chiropractor and energy practitioner – arrived unwittingly on the scene of this oil-covered puzzle and revealed that he’d spent four years as an airplane mechanic.  He helped Chris locate the oil leak- a loose bolt on the oil pan- and we were set.  We were to pick up a new oil pan gasket (or some such) to hold on to just in case but would ride out the current pan as the leaking seemed to have stopped.

 

Or so we thought.

We’ve spent the last several days with the Cameron Family of British Columbia, Canada.  It felt so good.  Though we all attended the RE Conference, our paths didn’t cross for extended periods.  We were thrilled that they decided to come and join us in Lewisville.  We all jived and chatted and discussed and played and laughed and… and… !!!  It was so fun to hang out with them.  Sadie and their daughter, Iris, were fast friends- holding hands throughout the campground and thoroughly enjoying each other’s company while playing pretend, crafting, exploring, swimming, biking, board gaming, ETC.  Mark fixed my bike and Sheila and I went off on a little bike ride together!  I feel so liberated to have my bike back from stuck-brake land.  We shared stories, talked about our trials, and speculated on our separate journeys.  Simon shared his love of music with us, exposed us to some Canadian bands, and floored us with his musical knowledge and ear for each layer of musical composition.  Their stay in Lewisville spilled over a couple of extra days as we enjoyed each other’s company and the lovely park setting.  When they really did pack up their van to go this morning, we decided it just felt right to go on our way as well.  It didn’t feel right to be here if they were gone.

So we left.  We packed up, dumped our tanks, picked up our laundry, hooked up the car, and drove to the grocery store that yesterday agreed to give us their waste vegetable oil for fuel.  Chris noticed continued leaking.  We turned the RV around and went back to the campground (insert internal temper tantrum here). 

Yes, our Universe works for us.  A man we met yesterday used to work on diesel engines for a living.  He agreed to come over this afternoon and help Chris assess the situation.  Wow.  We are so floored by the kindness of others.  This is not a fun thing to do with a friend – never mind a stranger – on a hot, Texas afternoon.  Good news!  No oil leak.  Bad news?  We’re leaking engine coolant.  There are a number of conflicting guesses as to why this is occurring- from something as innocuous as it being overflow due to the excess that needed to be put in with the veg. conversion to a need for a new water pump.  We’re on the fence as to what to do about it from here.  Chris is erring on the side of calling a shop tomorrow to see if we can get a bonafide diagnosis. 

No offense, but we just want to get out of Texas and officially start this tour which I will now affectionately dub, “The Being Tour”.  There, it has a name.  So now it’s on, right?

 
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Posted by on September 15, 2010 in Parks, RV, Travel log

 

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