Sunday, February 3, 2013

Hitchhikers in Pensacola

As I was driving down the road from Quincy, I noticed my volt meter on the dash wasn't on 13+ volts as it should be. In fact it kept creeping toward 0. I'm not much of an electrician but I didn't think that was good. I called my go to guy, Randy, since he knows more about a Bluebird than anyone else I know and discussed our little predicament with him. We decided it was best if we ran the generator while going down the road. So, I pulled over so I could hear the gen start and voila the voltage came up to where it was supposed to be. We deduced that I either had a bad battery in the bunch or the alternator on the engine wasn't putting out like it should.

But we made it to Pensacola without incident other than worrying about the batteries. We picked up some hitch hikers near the Pensacola airport at the Hampton Inn. Kirk and Donna (Patsi's cousin) had flown in from Denver to make the trip back to Lubbock with us. Kirk is a retired airplane mechanic from United Airlines (hope I got that right) so any mechanical help we might need was very welcome on this trip. Hopefully we won't have any trouble where we'll have to really do some real mechanicing (don't think that's really a word). The company was really appreciated regardless.

We stopped in Semmes, Ms at a large Circle K to get fuel since it was ONLY $3.61 a gallon. Who'd of thought we'd think $3.61 a gallon for diesel was a deal. But, I guess when most of the pricing for diesel is around 4 bucks a gallon - $3.61 looks pretty good when your buying close to 150 gallons.

Debit cards are great! When they work. When you're out of town, traveling through multiple states, the bank thinks your card has been stolen or something and is frequently declined. Or at least I think that's what is happening. I had talked with the bank before I left to make sure my limit was high enough to purchase diesel, food, and whatever so it wouldn't get declined when I tried to purchase something. Had trouble with it in Semmes trying to buy diesel. It worked once but wouldn't work after that. Put a call in to the bank to see what the trouble was. The nice lady there checked into what the problem was and called me back later that day and told me it should be ok now. She gave me her cell phone number just in case I had trouble over the weekend. Luckily it worked pretty good the rest of the trip.

We stopped in Jackson, Ms at one of the local Walmarts to camp for the night. Everything seemed to work like it was supposed to. We didn't have any issues other than the batteries not charging correctly. The generator will stay on for the rest of the trip. It'll cut down on our mileage but that's better than being stranded and having to use our roadside assistance program.

Drove to Longview the next day, Saturday to visit with Ronnie and Linda. Linda one of Patsi's best friends all the way back to high school. We parked in their drive way for the night. We got there a bit after lunch so they took us to BBQ.

Later that evening Sam & Rita, neighbors of Ronnie & Linda came over for dinner. Linda had made a fantabulous lasagna, with salad and garlic bread. She makes the BEST lasagna. I'd had lasagna in Venice at an Italian food restaurant and Linda's lasagna put theirs to shame! She even loaded us up with leftover lasagna so we could have it again down the road. And we did!! And it was just as good the second time around.

Sam & Rita had just purchased a Holiday Rambler motorhome so we stopped by their house to get their 30 second tour of their coach. We gave them our 30 second tour when they came over for dinner. Sam was busy with their Direct TV guy trying to get their satellite dish working. I haven't even thought about how to get ours working yet. Maybe in a month or so after I get most of these other things figured out.

Sunday we drove to Sweetwater, Tx and camped out in the Walmart parking lot again. We must have drove out of the cold because it was nearly hot that evening. We opened both windows in the bedroom and ran the fan. We've got an issue with the A/C and heater in the rear. It'll run for a bit, but then will shut off and won't come back on. I'll look into that when we get it home.

Drove to Lubbock on Monday. Patsi and Karen have a card class they were scheduled to go to on Tuesday and we were planning on going home on Wednesday. But, that evening Patsi asked if we could go ahead and go home on Tuesday. She had not slept well for a few nights and was really pretty tired.

So, Tuesday we got up and got our prescheduled stuff out of the way, got mom and all her things packed up, and took Kirk and Donna to the airport so they could fly back to Denver.

We dropped our hitchhikers, Kirk and Donna off at the airport and headed home. Mom acted like she didn't feel well. Then it dawned on me that she might be car sick. I remembered that she used to get car sick when I was a kid. And I bet the motion of the coach made her car sick. Geez, I felt terrible!

We finally got her pretty comfortable lying down on one of the couches and she slept the rest of the way. I hope some motion sickness medicine will work well for her. We'll take a small trip to Hobbs in a week or so, to make sure it will work.

Anyway, we made it home without another incident. The Bird is home!!

Now I just have to fix it's nest.

Until next time......


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