Thursday, April 28, 2011

North Carolina and S’plain It To Me, Lucy!

We’ve been back in NC for a few days taking care of dental appointments (thanks, Darcy!), visiting with friends, stocking up at my favorite Costco and dodging storms. What is it with this Spring? As I write this, we are under a severe wind warning and tornado watch. 201 people (so far) have lost their lives in the last 36 hours in 6 states next to us. That number is expected to rise. Alabama, the state we spent the most time in this winter, has been devastated. Tuscaloosa, leveled.  Enough already! Our hearts go out to the people that have lost loved ones. Words just seem inadequate right now.

We spent Easter weekend at Jordan Lake, south of the Triangle. We had a very nice site there…long and roomy. Here’s my shot of Rick sitting in his chair ☺

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We had a nice Easter. We enjoyed a campfire later in the day, compliments of the people in the next site. IMGP2373They were a father and his 3 kids. They left early that morning and when the ranger came around checking sites, he found they had left a bundle of firewood by the picnic table. Rick was outside (in his chair ☺) and the ranger offered it to him . It had been paid for so he thought someone should use it.  We waited until late in the day, just in case they hadn’t meant to leave it and were coming back to retrieve it. It was a beautiful day and this made it a special evening. The only thing missing was the marshmallows. They are now on the shopping list ☺

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Tuesday, after waiting for the rain to stop, we left Crosswinds Campground at Jordan Lake and headed north to Bullocksville Campground at Kerr Lake.  This is another of those state parks right on the water. It’s a nice park but there are only  a few sites that will accommodate a rig our size and the park itself is not entirely big rig friendly. It was a little tight getting into our site but we made it just fine; just very slowly and carefully.  The site itself is plenty long for us and the Jeep and visitors too. It’s the maneuvering around fixed garbage cans and trees that made it a bit more difficult than it should have been. The hookups here are placed at opposite ends of the site. The power is at the far back; very convenient. The water, however, is at the very front right by the street. It’s a good thing we had extra hose as it’s a long stretch to the faucet! Our site backs up to the bath/shower house which, considering the weather, we are grateful. At least if we need to take shelter, we won’t have to go far.

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On the drive here, we finally came up with a name for our coach. It seems everyone we know has named their RV, whether it be a motorhome or a 5th wheel. We tried to come up with something in the past but nothing seemed right.

We continue to learn as we go along, some of which can be confusing. We have always looked at the other when one of us didn’t get it and said “S’plain it to me, Lucy” (as only Desi could say it ☺).

Because most of our confusion and education revolves around this motorhome, we’ve even asked her to “s’plain it to me” a few times. It just somehow seemed fitting, as a new member of the family, that we give her that name.

So, we introduce to you, Lucy, our home on wheels. We think it fits.

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As you can see, she and Rick get along well ☺

Until next time, thanks for stopping by and please, stay safe.

 

Thursday, April 21, 2011

We Survived Camp Freightliner!

Tuesday morning, after saying good bye to our remaining friends and neighbors, we pulled out of River Plantation RV Park in Sevierville, TN and headed for Gaffney, SC. It was a beautiful and uneventful drive and we pulled into the KOA at 1:40 PM making the trip in 3.5 hours. We will be here for 3 nights to  attend Camp Freightliner on Wednesday and Thursday.

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Camp Freightliner is offered at the Gaffney Freightliner location to anyone that wants to learn all about their motorhome. If your motorhome was built on a Freightliner Chassis, it was built in Gaffney. They are the only Freightliner facility in the world that makes motorhome chassis. It’s a 2 day training session covering the air brake system, electrical system, maintenance intervals, weight distribution and a multitude of other things.

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We had to be ready by 7:30 AM Wednesday as they were coming by the campground to pick us up. It’s been a long time since I had to be out and about that early :) I don’t think I’ll make a habit out of it either :)  Anyhow, our first day was absolutely filled with information and we were given additional resources that we’ll always be able to use when we need help. There were 14 of us and it turned out that there was another couple with our names to confuse things :) Actually they were Gayle (instead of Gail) and Rick. The funny part was that their last name started with an H too, they were full timers domiciling out of South Dakota too and we both had Tiffin motorhomes! It was too funny and very confusing to our instructor but he finally started calling on us by the color of our shirts or the size of our engine :) Class lasted until 4:30 with a half hour lunch. Whew! They supplied lunch and we also returned at 5:30 for dinner-on them too-very good :)  We were back home by 7:00, watched a little TV and headed to bed. Thursday was going to be at least as long.

Thursday morning sure did come early.  Mike, our instructor, packed enough info into Day 2 of our class that we all had information overload.

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We learned about our engine brakes, our tires, our airbags, our air dyer, our onboard computer message center, our engines, our transmissions, how to properly drive up and down mountains and steep grades and more.  I’m pretty brain dead right now :) We finished up at 5:30 PM. All in all, it was an excellent class and we both feel it was well worth the money.

Friday morning we’ll be leaving Gaffney and heading for Jordan Lake back in North Carolina. We’ll be there for a week or so visiting with friends and tending to dental appointments etc. It’ll be nice going back home for a few days.

I have to leave you with a couple photos of the Gaffney water tower. It’s a peach representing the peach capital of South Carolina. The locals tell the story about the tower being built and they weren’t quite sure what to make of it. At first, it didn’t have the leaf or any of the shading to make it look like a peach. What it did have was the crease down the side with a little mottling and was thought to more accurately depict a baby’s bottom with diaper rash! It was only after the additional shading and the placement  of the leaf that it began to more resemble the peach. What do you think?

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Monday, April 18, 2011

Smoky Mountain National Park

Sunday afternoon we took a drive through part of Smoky Mountain National Park. It was a beautiful day, we put the top down on the Jeep and took off. What a beautiful drive!
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There were waterfalls right on the side of the road! Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to snap a picture fast enough! But here’s a slightly fuzzy picture of the Little Pigeon River Smile
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The scenery was spectacular, the weather beautiful, a perfect day for a drive.
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After all that beautiful scenery, we stopped at Five Guys in Pigeon Forge for a late lunch/early supper. I keep reading about all our friends eating at Five Guys so had to try it for ourselves…not too bad! Smile
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Once we got home, we took a walk and then settled in for the evening. We watched a little TV, I worked on the photos I had taken over the week, posted a couple blog entries and went to bed. Until next time, thanks for stopping by.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Final Rally Day, Dinner, Party and Farewell Breakfast

In an attempt to catch up with all the rally news, this is post #2 for Sunday. I rarely post more than once a week so bear with me here, I’ll lapse back into my weekly postings shortly Smile

Saturday was the last full day of the rally and went by quickly. We went to the seminar on traveling to Alaska in the morning, then had a quick lunch before the rig walk thru’s. Several of the rally attendees opened up their rigs for viewing by those that had not yet purchased their rig or those who were looking for a different rig. It’s very helpful if you’re looking to buy. It gives you an idea of what’s out there and gives you a chance to compare types of RV’s and see what modifications others have made. We totally enjoyed visiting as many rigs as possible last year, so in return, we opened ours this year. We were open for the first shift from 1:00-3:00. The second shift was from 3:00-5:00 and by the time that rolled around, the wind was blowing so hard you could hardly stand up out there. Luckily, it was just gusty winds in our area. Much of the south was hit with horrible tornadoes with much damage and several deaths. This has not been a friendly spring in the south.

Saturday evening, we had a nice catered dinner of salad, chicken breast, barbequed ribs, potatoes, beans, rolls and chocolate cake for dessert. It was very good. Following the dinner was the farewell party/70’s bash. There were more headbands and peace necklaces than I’ve seen in a long time, not to mention all the tie dyed duds Smile There was a deejay and we danced and laughed and visited and promised to stay in touch with all our new and old friends. Here are several pictures of friends either at the party or at Sunday morning breakfast. I tried to get as many as I could before people started leaving but, unfortunately, missed several.

Al and Karen

AL & Karen

Bill & Nancy

Bill & Nancy

Bob & Bunnie

Bob & Bunnie

Catherine & Jo Beth

Catherine & JoBeth

Dan & Tricia

Dan & Tricia (2)

Denny & Char

Denny & Char

Gin & Syl

Gin & Syl

Jenny & Don

Jenny & Don

Jenny’s toe socks Smile

Jenny's toe socks

Laura & Bruce

Laura & Bruce

Lee & Martha

Lee & Martha

Our hosts, Linda & Howard

Linda & Howard

Linda & Jim

Linda & Jim

Mike & Terri

Mike & Terri

Sunday morning most everyone left to go home after breakfast and a few more hugs and handshakes. There are still several of us here at the park, mostly those of us retired and not in any hurry to leave Smile

Travel safely everyone and see you down the road.

America’s Hit Parade

I told you in the last post that I’d let you know how America’s Hit Parade at the Grand Majestic Theatre turned out Friday night. Well, it was a big hit! We carpooled and caravanned over to the theatre. Rick and I rode over with Laura and Bruce. We were ushered in as soon as we arrived.

(Click any picture to enlarge)

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We were supposed to have 100 people for a private show and I think we may have been slightly  under that number but not by much. The show must go on and it did! Smile

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It was a 2 hour show that covered the popular songs of the 50’s, 60’s, 70’s and 80’s. It was fantastic! Ticket prices run $29 each and would have been worth that price. We were given a substantial discount and ours were only $5.00! It was the best five bucks I’ve spent in a long, long time!

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We departed the theatre into a downpour of wind and rain but nothing real seriousIMGP2300IMGP2302.

 

 

 

 

 

We got a little damp but made it home all in one piece Smile The next day was to be the final full day of the rally and so after a very short TV watching session, we called it a night.