Our Schedule

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Too much rain, Not enough rain.

Cullman,   AL

We arrived back in Cullman yesterday afternoon following an eventful 3 weeks away.  The first week was spend parked in Salem, VA Ford dealer parking lot while the truck got it's new engine.  As I reported I did manage getting away for a few days.  At the hospital. 

The next two weeks were at either Gettysburg Farm Thousand Trails or Hershey Thousand Trails.  Life is strange.   For 7 years or so I loved RVing.   Then I got tired of it.  Really tired.  It no longer holds the interest I once have.  There is no place like home.  We came home two weeks before we planned to.

About the weather.  Those living in MD, NJ and PA where I have family have had more than their share of rain this summer.  I've talked about my one daughter who owns a converted grist mill built in 1832 near Hershey, PA.    Part of a stream that operated the mill is diverted to under her house.   For almost 200 years this building has withstood flood and high water.  Her brick floored basement has seen much flooding as has the five foot thick stone walls.    This year saw their highest basement flood.   Several feet.  It doesn't take long for it to drain and then the rains come again.

Each time there are heavy rains debris gets lodged under the house.   Each time they don their waders and attempt removal. 

Daughter Terri and Grandson Justin working to remove debris from under the house.

Len and Son-in-law Steve pulling out part of a large tree that was stuck under there.  Grand-dog Cain supervises.

They have more rain than needed while here in Alabama we have had so little.   We came back to dead flowers and a garden in bad need to a good watering.   Really feeling the draught it is our pond.  This is how it looked a month ago.

This is how it looks now.

To compound the situation, a neighbor about 1/2 mile away is putting in a pond.  It looks more like a lake.  It's huge.  Our closest neighbor also has a pond.  He told us that until this new pond/lake fills ours will continue to lose water.  The new pond is on the major spring that feeds our ponds.  So it has to fill and the overflow goes into the ditch/stream that runs in the middle of our closest neighbors land and fills his pond and then the ditch along our property line.  So the first neighbors lake fills, the overflow goes to the 2nd neighbor, his overflow runs to our ditch that fills our pond and our overflow runs back into our ditch and along it goes.  We have a spring also but it does not put out enough to make up for the underground water than is now filling the pond/lake that is being dug.  All this would change with a good rainfall.

We were greeted by our friend when we arrived home yesterday.

Until next time

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

This has been an experience

Hershey Preserve Thousand Trails
Lebanon,  PA

This is the week that was.

Yup, we left Cullman August 12.  Our plan was to spend two weeks at this campground.  Then move on to Camp Driveway at our friends Lyn and Shirley in NJ.  From there a week at Sea Pines Thousand Trails near Cape May, NJ

The best layed plans.

As the previous blog told you, in Salem VA the engine on our truck died on August 13.  We can not say enough good about Berglund Ford.  They got right on it.  They kept us informed and had no problem with us dry camping in their parking lot.  We sure are glad we left home with a full fresh water tank and all holding tanks empty.  Could have been a problem if we didn't.

For the last month or so I have had a few nights when I felt bad.  I had stomach pains that lasted about 4 hours.  I suspected maybe gall bladder?    The night of the 14th I woke at 11:30 with a stomach ache.  I took a Tums.  It got worse.  I played on the computer, I tried to go back to sleep.  From our bed to one of the bunks.  Nothing helped.  Finally around 2:00 am Len woke.  He said let's go to the ER.  I said no.  I lay  back down in bed.

Let's back up a bit.  Early in the evening we had gone to DQ.  I wanted a Blizzard.   I had one.  Flavor of the month.   YUMMY.  Reeses peanut butter.  A small size. 

So, I lay back down in bed.   I felt nausea.  I made it to the toilet.   I lost the Blizzard.  I felt faint. So off to the ER.  I told them what I suspected.   I made a spot on diagnosis.   That afternoon (the 15th) the offending organ was removed.    I stayed that night in the hospital.   I've felt fine since. A  little sore but nothing bad at all.

As I was on the phone at the hospital telling daughter Amy I was being admitted,  her husband got the call that his mother had just passed.   It was expected.  We drove down to Milford, DE today for the funeral.  We are glad we were here at this time.  Not only for Scott but it must have been frightening for the granddaughters.  The same day one grandmother passed in the hospital, the other one was admitted to a hospital.  In their grief, glad they could see I am fine.

I was told I was to see a doctor in two weeks.  As we planned to be in NJ  the plan was to see our previous doctor.  I know she would be glad to see us.

As Len and I continued to talk, we both felt the need to just go home where I will see our doctor there.    So I've cancelled the NJ visits.  Why push it.  We will stay here until the 28th as we had  planned.   We still have things we want to do and visit more with daughter Terri and SIL Steve.  Also want to catch up with friends Darlene and Jim.    It is about 100 miles shorter to home from Hershey PA area than Cape May,  NJ area.   And a much nicer route.  Just hop on I-81 and head south.   That's the plan. 

So some changes.  The truck got something put in.   I had something taken out.  And our investments got the biggest hit.

Until next time.

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Another bump on the highway.

Salem,  VA

Our plans were to leave Cullman on Sunday August 12, spend two nights on the road and arrive at Thousand Trails, Hershey PA on Tuesday, August 14.

As is quite normal for us.... didn't happen.

We did leave Cullman on Sunday around 10:15 right after church.   We drove 283 miles to a church campground in Dandridge, TN where we over-nighted.  Didn't even unhook the truck.  We needed a 50 amp site due to the hot weather and having the girls with us. 

We got back on the road Monday morning with the expectation that we would overnight in Lexington, VA (271 miles) and arrive at the TT park in Hershey  mid afternoon on Tuesday.   Then came the bump on the highway or better known as how can Leonard and Phyllis get screwed again.   Suddenly we heard a clattering.  At first we thought maybe a flat tire.  Oh how we wish it were.

We pulled over and as Leonard was walking around the trailer checking tires, I heard the sound coming from the engine.  Not a sound we want to hear.   The truck odometer had just turned to 200,000 miles the day before.   We were hoping to get 350,000 miles on this diesel engine.  It was not to be.

There was an exit only about 100 feet from where we stopped.  I got on our on-board GPS and found a Ford dealer 1 1/2 miles away. 

So... here we are.   Instead of  a lovely campsite on a lake, river or even in a RV park, here are our views.

New engine needed.  Hopefully it will be installed by Friday.  We don't count on it.  They did give us a nice loaner.  Brand new F150.   Thinking they want a sale.

Glad we brought a generator with us.  We ran it overnight and just cranked it up again a few minutes ago.   Have to keep things charged.

One of the first things I did when we got to the Ford dealer was call my daughter Amy.  She asked if she should come get the girls   Yes.  She left work around 3:30 near Baltimore and got here after 7:30.  She said she got back home 1:15 am.   It is better the girls be home and not have to sit here for the next several days.  Better for them, BETTER FOR US.

I have a nephew who lives about an hour and a half south of here.   Jason and Kelly offered to come get us.  We would have taken them up on the offer if we were not provided with a loaner.  Thanks for the offer Kelly and Jason.  We will be fine.

Leonard getting some sun and enjoying the view????

Hopefully no further problems.  Heck, who am I kidding.  There will be.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Looking for rattlesnakes.

Cullman,  AL

Almost time to head to the northeast and take the granddaughters home.  We leave Sunday morning stopping overnight at an Escapees park in Heiskell, TN and again at an RV park in Lexington, VA.  We will arrive at Hershey Preserve that will be our home away from home for 2 weeks.

Since moving to Alabama we have heard about the Rattlesnake Saloon in Tuscumbia,   Al.   Yesterday we drove the 81 miles each way to check it out and have dinner.   What fun.

You park on a higher level than the saloon.    You are picked up and driven down in a truck "taxi".

Lousy pictures.   We were moving.   It is a steep drive.  Coming back up was even more fun.

The saloon is built into a cave overhang.

Lots of outside seating under the rock overhang.

And seating in the saloon.   Alcohol served after 5.

This attraction is only open during the warmer months.... April to November and only on Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday.  Live music after 6 with closing at 10.    They have a limited menu but reasonably priced.   We had a huge bowl of nachos and salsa.   Abby had a corn dog with fries.  Charlotte had nachos with queso and chili.  Leonard had a nice burger with fries.  I had a wedge salad with bacon, pecans and crasins with blue cheese dressing.   We each had soft drinks or ice tea with refills.  Total cost only $36.00

On the upper level near the parking lot are RV sites, a gift shop and horses riding stables.

We will go back.  Try it when in the area.

Until next time.

Thursday, August 2, 2018

We had to give up. Hopeless.

Hidden Cove CG
Arley, AL

I am sitting at the local TT campground using their Internet.   The kids are at the pool.

To continue with my V (VERIZON) issue.   No they did not show up on July 17.  We really did not expect them to.  Did you?   That made the 5th no show.

So.... in frustration we gave up.  For then.   Then the week of the 22nd Leonard bravely called Verizon again.   Once more we had to tell them our story.   All we wanted is to have the Cantenna (Verizon Antenna) hooked up.  That's all.   Once more it is "we are so sorry that you are having problems. blah, blah, blah.  Once more it was a long phone call and being transferred to many different people.   Did I say long? Is 10:30 am to 1:30 pm considered long?

Finally we thought we connected with a person that could help.  She sounded nice.  She sounded that she knew what she was talking about.   She sounded like she wanted to help.    We were given an  appointment for a technician to be at the house on August 1 between 8-12.   She emailed me the contract stating the charge would be $10.00 a month for a two year contract.   OK.  Also if we cancelled before 2 years we would have to pay a $350.00 cancellation fee.  What the heck!!!!! $240 if we kept the service, $350 if we didn't.   Did I read that right?

This was the 3rd contract I was sent.    This was the 3rd contract I sent back. This was the 4th person who told me it would be $10.00 a month for the antenna.

Now..... this was  totally unexpected (snicker, snicker).   Come August 1.   NO SHOW.

Leonard called Verizon shortly after 12.     After on hold for over 1/2 hour they checked our record.  They said the account was closed June 11.  NO!  That was the day I called to get the damn thing hooked up.  (Can you tell I am getting aggravated just writing about it???).    Oh, they say..... they see it was installed on June 23.  That's right.  BUT IT NEVER WORKED.

The nice lady (scarcism) on the phone said she found someone who could really help us... Patrick.  Patrick proceeds to tell us the fee is between $70.00 and $160.00 a month.   What happened to the $10.00 fee?     And he had no idea what we really called for.

So, bottom line..... we have a new Cantenna on the house.   We have a new router.   We just don't have it connected.  After all... Verizon had given us such good service and which we appreciate.  We are privileged to do business with them.  IDIOTS.