Wednesday, October 18, 2017

I'm Not Touching Another Appliance

Casa Grande, AZ
Leisure Valley

Not a lot happening here other than the semi-annual doctor visits.  Had two dentist appointments and Bill saw his cardiologist today.  Bill will have a stress test on the 23rd to see if they can determine why he is short of breath.  

In the last week my vacuum died.  If that wasn't bad enough the vacuum sealing machine quit and something is up with the toaster.  The gremlins are attacking our appliances.

On the good side, we received our ballots in the mail and we mailed them back the same day.  I do like having the ballots sent in the mail.  We signed up years ago when we were working.  They will not forward them if you are out of town.  

Next week is the Escapees Chapter 32 rally.  Our local Chapter 45 has been invited to the rally.  We're looking forward to seeing friends we haven't seen in awhile.





Look who came to visit us.  Isn't he beautiful.  He stayed there for a long time until I went to get the camera.







Turtle Safely..........







Friday, October 13, 2017

Turtles on the Road and on the Ears

Casa Grande, AZ

Why does the time go so quickly when you aren't doing anything?  I haven't blogged since the first day on the road leaving the Montana Owners Club (MOC) Rally.  

We always say we're going to take our time returning to Casa Grande.  This year we returned in record time.  Bill was having some issues with his heart rate and I wanted him to have it checked by his cardiologist since he didn't think he needed to have it checked in Goshen.  It returned to normal before we returned to Casa Grande.

We took the interstates instead of our usual US highways.  I must say you can make many more miles on the interstates.  Our next night was spent in Springfield at a run down for the money KOA.  We did have an excellent dinner at the Cedars.

The following day we drove from Springfield to Texico, OK.  It's one of those days when you're tired and just want to stop.  Every place we stopped at looked terrible.  We finally stopped in Texico which is on the border of Texas and Oklahoma.  There was a restaurant in front boarded up and it looked like an abandoned RV park.  As Bill started to U turn I noticed a motorhome.  I walked into the park and there was a self pay station.  I spoke with the motorhome people and they said they love it there.  We pulled in and I wrote out a check for $14 for the full hook up 50 amp service.  There was another motorhome that pulled in right after us.



We rode over to Shamrock, Texas for dinner and to fuel the truck up. 


I thought Vern would get a kick out of this.



Just like most things along Route 66, cutsy.  







Now, anyone that knows Bill knows he would never hurt a living thing.  











He didn't want to have anyone run over this turtle.


He relocated it to the nice soft grass.  No, I didn't bring it home with us.

The following day we drove to Alamogordo and stayed at Boot Hill and the next day drove to Casa Grande.  There were a lot of time changes in that trip.

We were surprised when my sister, Sherry, and her husband, Dave, ended up parked next to us in Sundance a few hours later.  They came from the  west coast.

Other than an oil change on the truck, hearing doctor appointments, family doctor and dentist appointments there hasn't been much time for anything else.  Two dentist appointments, one haircut, one heart doctor are scheduled for next week.  I did have an eye appointment but it was changed.  

And as Paul Harvey said, "Now for the rest of the story".  Those of you who read the title will now get the rest of the it.

Look at the turtle earrings Bill bought for me.  I love them!

After fighting with the camera we bought in Alaska, we did buy another one and the earring photo was taken with it.

Sounds pretty boring to me.  What do you think?  



Turtle Safely......



Wednesday, September 27, 2017

The Party is Over

Effingham, IL
Camp Lakewood Campground

Yesterday was the final day of the rally.  I can't believe the week is up already.  Every year the rally gets better and better.  I will proudly wear my MOC t-shirt that every attendee received.  Thanks again to all those who were responsible for the success. 

I noticed a piece of the vinyl trim by the roof was disintegrating and told one of the service techs.  They didn't have any with them, but sent someone back for it. 


When they were up on the roof they noticed that we needed lap sealant around something.  They went ahead and resealed it.  That's the difference between a RV repairman and a great one.  They go steps beyond.  

There were seminars in the morning, but for some reason we didn't have time for them.  Keystone/Montana had another great meal for us.  The lunch consisted of Chicken Parmesan, Italian sausage with peppers and onions, green beans, caesar salad, rolls and huge trays of great desserts.  

Following the luncheon, everyone had a chance to ask either Sam or Mark any questions they had about the High Country or Montanas. Sam and Mark gave us an overview of all the new features the new models will have.  They made notes from comments by the MOC members of any suggestions for future models.  You can tell they did everything humanly possible to please all the members.  I can't imagine servicing over 100 coaches in that short time period.  

Talk about a hard act to follow.  Bill and I had to follow Sam and Mark's talk.  We were the coordinators for The White Elephant.  I must say once it gets going I really love doing it.  There were about 50 gifts to choose from.   

Dennis Ward had a beautiful fall arrangement, but unfortunately, he didn't get to keep it.



It was hot but no one complained of the heat.










 We used black garbage bags, but someone managed to make their gift bag look different.  






There was a lot of laughter and I hope everyone enjoyed themselves.







We've already been asked to coordinate the White Elephant next year.








Here's a few more photos.










Dennis had a second chance to pick a gift.







That was probably the fastest two hours for an event.







Finally, we're getting down to a few gifts left.








We had one hour before the final prize drawing.  Bill went and fueled up the truck for today's departure.  As we were returning, Harry, Carlena and Boo were walking over.  

They have been touring all the RV makers.  I was surprised when they returned from a high end tour and were telling us how cheaply they were made.  We only had a few minutes to visit with them, before we returned to the big tent.  

We were sitting next to George and Linda during the prize drawing.  They won a lot of prizes. We won another prize, a zero lounger.  Thanks George, for carrying it back to our coach for us.  Ted won the 50/50 which was $460, I think.

It was late after everyone left our site.  We had planned to walk down and say goodbye to Harry and Carlena but my foot was so swollen, I couldn't walk that far.  

This morning the hot weather broke.  It was sprinkling lightly but by the time we went out to hitch up it quit.  I drove the first 170 miles and then Bill took over.  It was partly cloudy and we were lucky we didn't get any rain.  The cross winds weren't so bad once we turned south on I 57.  I know everyone is surprised that we are on the interstate, but we need to get back to Casa Grande as soon as possible.

We are in Effingham, Illinois.  Bill always gets antsy to cross the Mississippi River, where he finally can feel likes he's back in the west.  


Turtle Safely......

Monday, September 25, 2017

MOC Rally 2017--Day 5 and 6

Goshen, Indiana
Elkhart County 4H Fairgrounds

It's been so busy, I've not taken many photos.

Yesterday Bill and I gave the North to Alaska seminar.  I surely wish Dennis Hill would have been here with all his expertise.   I believe we got rid of about 50 pounds of brochures.

The class was from 2:30 to 4 pm.  I didn't expect many to attend as Mac the Fire Guy was probably giving his last seminar before he retires, at the same time as our class.  Also the temperatures was 90 degrees and the small tent was much warmer than the large one.  I think I counted 35 people.

I have to say we were happy to have people come up after class and say they changed their minds and were now going to make the journey.  

Thankfully, my dish for the potluck was in the instant pot so all I had to do was go and get.   

After the potluck dinner, the Morey's and us walked down to the other section and visited with Harry and Carlena. 

The photo doesn't show up well, but this was the first year for movie night.  They even had a popcorn machine!

Seminars today were:  Progressive Dynamics converters, Norco Industries, Dometic/Atwood, and Dexter axles.  
We took a plant tour of the High Country.  We were the first to arrive and were waiting in a room where employees punched out.   Nearly everyone of the employees, said "hello".  One fellow stopped at the vending machines.  Bill asked him what time they started work.  The fellow proudly said he was there about 4 am, but they didn't get paid until 4:50 am.  He said he thought he was qualified to work there, but it took him 2 years to get hired.  He said they only hire the best people with a good work attitude.  He said the employees were treated very well.

After the tour at plant 17, we went to plant 4 to see all the new models.  I'm happy to say, there were only two models that I liked better than ours.  We were scheduled  to tour the customer service, but by the time we were finished with the plant tour, it was too late, so we came back to the fairground.

Keystone had a wonderful barbecue for everyone.  After the meal there was another prize drawing.  George and Rosetta were concentrating on their ticket numbers.




John and Shirley are smiling because they won a tool kit and a South Side Soda gift certificate.

Notice the Montana t-shirts that everyone was given.


We won a 135 piece tool kit.









Turtle Safely.......








Saturday, September 23, 2017

MOC Rally 2017--Day 4

Goshen, Indiana
Elkhart County 4H Fairgrounds


We were meeting Linda and George Morey and Harry and Carlena Schoolcraft at 8:30 am for the haystack breakfast. It is only served on Saturday morning.  I can't believe how long the lines were to get some.  Luckily, they served everyone very quickly.  It was way too much food for us.

On the walk over we realized we were going to miss the pet parade.  At least we had a chance to get some photos as the pets were registered.  





All I can say there was all different shapes and sizes.







Donna matched her dogs, but notice Kimber isn't entered.










I was amazed at how well all the pets got along.







Do you think this dog should be fed more?









It was hot!  I didn't say warm.  After the prize drawing the group photo was taken.  There is no way you can get that many people in one photo.  I must say it went much quicker than in the past.  

I gave the Tips and Tricks for Ladies seminar after the group photo.  Thankfully, the ladies all participated with ideas. I'm not a public speaker and I was a little nervous.  I did it last year, but that was the first year for that seminar.  I was surprised how many ladies showed up.  Would you sit in a tent in 90 plus degrees that didn't have air conditioning?  I really appreciate all the ladies who showed up.

George and Linda asked us to go to the Essenhaus for dinner.  Carlena and Harry also joined in the fun.





We returned just in time for the Saturday night social.  Keystone supplied the band, Mike Valentine and the Heartbeats.  They were from Chicago and played music that appealed to us.  The tents were actually pleasant once they opened up the back side.  

Another prize drawing was held and we weren't close to the numbers called.  

Tomorrow promises to be another busy day.

Turtle Safely........

Friday, September 22, 2017

MOC Rally--Day 3

Goshen, Indiana
Elkhart County 4H Fairgrounds

This morning George and Linda took us to the MORryde chassi plant tour.  There were so many people signed up to tour the Sterling plant that they offered the chassi plant tour to those who had previously toured the Sterling plant.



Every one had a chance to pick their favorite color MORryde t-shirt.








It was a very interesting tour.









I have no idea how far we walked, but I believe we did three different buildings plus the upstairs.






We heard that Elkhart County has an unemployment rate of 1.9% and that they need employees.  One of the problems is they need CDL drivers to move the chassis around.  They will train people to weld.



This container is contracted by the military.  It is used in Afghanistan.  It was the coolest thing we saw there.





After we returned to the fairgrounds, I walked over to the Suburban water heater seminar while Bill attend a Tredit Tire seminar.  My seminar was cancelled, so I walked back to the coach and just chilled in the air conditioning.  Did I mention that today is the first day of autumn and it was 91 degrees?


George, Linda, Harry, Carlena, Bill and I walked over to the relief sale.  Carlena quilts and she couldn't believe all the quilts that were displayed.  





Bill bought me some flowers. They smelled so good.

Carlena bought a beautiful quilt.






Look at what I found!  This is an African turtle that is 13 years old.  It's life expectancy is 100 years.






You get an idea of the size of it in this photo.








It's hard to believe how crowded the fairground are in just a few hours.







Turtle Safely..........






Thursday, September 21, 2017

MOC Rally 2017--Day 1 and 2

Goshen, Indiana
Elkhart County 4H Fairgrounds

Yesterday we began our day with Harry and Carlena and returned to the Shipshewana Flea Market.  I knew it was a busy day and glad we did an early start.

The auction was in full swing but my mind couldn't process all the auctioneers doing their thing at the same time.  




We walked the entire flea market as I was looking for a quilt like Carlena purchased last week.  Of course, I found them in the very last row.  I also needed more tomatoes.  Harry bought a really cute train windsock.  

Registration was from 10 am until 2 pm so we returned in time for that.  As soon as we picked up our packet, Bill and I dashed off to the laundromat as we needed to be back for a coordinators meeting. 

Every year this rally gets better and better.  For instance, the service tech appointments started before the rally even started.  The rally booklet is 82 pages long.  It was well thought out and I like all the changes.  The coach washing began before the rally started.  

We hadn't had a chance to meet Kimber, Donna and Denny's new addition to their family so we stopped by to meet him.  

Instead of the usual Meet N Greet where we all brought some food, this year Tiara RV sponsored box lunches from Jimmy John's.  It was so much faster getting your food without waiting in lines.  Announcements were over quickly and you had a chance to visit with friends and meet new ones.  

They had a flag disposal ceremony directly after the Meet N Greet.  We walked back to the coach and got delayed talking to someone so we missed the ceremony. Another great addition to the rally.



We walked down to the 200 section and talked with Harry and Carlena.  Look what Harry found for us in the thrift store.  We've been looking for a hand rail by the steps.  I still have problems with my foot sometimes and need something to steady myself on the steps.

The weather is very warm this year.  It is predicted to be in the high 80's.  
Today Bill and I attended the MORryde presentation put on by Gary Wheeler.  It was very informative and I learned a lot about tires, suspension and brakes.  When you drive from Arizona to Indiana to get your wheel bearings greased, it tells you what we think of MORryde. Yes, I know I have plenty of MORryde t-shirts but we'd still go even if they didn't supply them.  


The ladies luncheon was also an improvement from the past years.  





It was held in the big tent and lunch was provided by Panera.  It was supposed to be a light lunch as this evening was the Amish dinner at the Carriage House.






Somehow I don't call a sandwich, salad, rolls, pickles, chips, fruit and huge cookie a light lunch. 






Someone once told me if you don't gain a pound or two during a rally you didn't enjoy it.  I'm sure I'll have proof that I really enjoyed the rally.




Every event to date has been better than any before.  The previous rallies were great but what a bar they are setting for next year.  




Our Amish dinner at the Carriage House was delicious.  Out of respect for the family, I didn't take any photos but trust me no one went away hungry.  After we entered the Carriage House we realized that we'd been there before for dinner with the Escapees.

After George and Linda dropped us off from dinner, we went for a walk.  Of course, we stopped to see Boo and her parents, Harry and Carlena.  

The fairgrounds have transformed and tomorrow it will look so different with the Mennonite Relief Sale tomorrow.  My mouth is watering for a haystack dinner.

Turtle Safely........