Tuesday, November 28, 2017
Here we go again!
Up at four forty five. Into our room by six. Wait, wait, wait!
Claudia came out after ten. Alex went to take care of the paperwork, aka pay for the windshield and bodywork. Progressive, our insurer, decided to separate the windshield and the bodywork into two separate claims, causing two separate deductibles. Not going to happen! Our wonderful claims agent, Ji, and I were engaged in battle. He insisted that the two issues were mutually exclusive. I agued they were one in the same. Finally, I had to use his logic against him. On page twenty three of our policy, it clearly states that if the windshield damage was not caused by a collision, then there was no deductible. Since he insists it is its own claim and not part of the bodywork, page twenty three applies. Now he was stumped. He had to check with his supervisor. A few minutes later I was handing the phone to Troy so the additional money for the windshield could be sent to REVtown and we could finally buy our escape. This is a very strange feeling. We were free! After nine and a half weeks, we could leave this place. Leave! Go wherever we wanted. I’m not sure we know how to do this anymore.
On a side note, I have to say I am not happy with our entire experience with Progressive. We had to do battle for them to accept our claim. I had to take it up the chain of command to get the claim filed. Then I had to do battle over them separating them into two different claims. The entire experience was painful. No one should have to fight to get a claim processed.
Now that the paperwork was completed, Alex dumped Claudia’s tanks and we brought the kitties home. After eating lunch, I booked our stay at Seven Feathers Casino Resort. The only problem now was the website didn’t have anything available till Thursday. A phone call later and we got the extra day. We ran out to PetSmart, Walmart and Freddy’s to get some supplies. Sixty eight day later and we were finally going to leave Coburg tomorrow. I can’t believe it! What a glorious feeling!
Monday, November 27, 2017
We are planning on leaving REVtown today after doing the paperwork, but Alex has a few more issues, so leaving is on hold. We spend most of the day waiting for Troy to come out to the coach so Alex can show him his concerns. Once he does, we then have to wait to see when we can get in to get the issues taken care of. Turns out, it’s six AM tomorrow morning. Since we thought we were done with the waiting room, we put everything away. So now we have to get the cooler and stroller and whatever back out for the morning. So much for our grand escape!
Sunday, November 26, 2017
It’s raining again. Jigsaw puzzle time.
Saturday, November 25, 2017
Raining again. Or is it yet?
We are going to the Actors Cabaret of Eugene tonight. It is a dinner theater where the performance tonight is Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice.
The theater is really a cute little restaurant on a corner in Eugene. We park the car on the street at sixteen minutes to six. There are meters that require money until six. Rather than risk it, we feed the meter and walk over to the theater.
Inside, there is a stage against the back wall, with tables on three levels, in the form of an arch around the stage. In the far left corner is a bar that has a curtain drawn to hide it during the performance. It reminds me of the small clubs you find in the Village, Greenwich Village, like the Bottom Line. Yes, I’m dating myself.
As soon as we are seated, the waitress takes our drink order and our choice of soup or salad. I order the tomato bisque and Alex has salad. Since I’m having sausage manicotti, I order a half carafe of Merlot, not many choices, for $12. Surprisingly not bad. Alex’s vodka gimlet tasted more like a whiskey sour, they substituted something else for Rose’s Lime Juice, so he switched to a half carafe of Riesling, which was the driest Riesling I ever tasted. I actually liked it.
When you purchase your ticket, you have a choice of several different entrees. I chose the sausage manicotti, hence the Merlot, and Alex picked the roasted pork chops. Surprise, the manicotti was in a white sauce, something I didn’t expect. It was good, but nothing to write home about. Alex loved the pork chops, he raved about them.
In addition to the tables around the stage, there are rows of seats against the second and third tier levels. People who don’t want dinner can come just for the show. And they do. There isn’t a bad seat in the house since the restaurant is so small. The show starts at seven thirty. All the performers and crew were local people who volunteer to perform, do the lighting, make the sets and the costumes. The Actors Cabaret is a nonprofit that takes donations.
The performance was an enjoyable experience. At intermission, our dessert was served and you settled your tab for your extras. The show ended after nine and we walked back to our car in the ever present drizzle.
Friday, November 24, 2017
I checked the tracking on my FedEx package, only to discover it was handed off to the Post Office. Big problem! The address I gave for delivery is REVtown’s physical address, where UPS and FedEx deliver. If the Post Office is involved, it has to be REVtown’s PO box. Their physical address does not get mail. Hoping we were getting out of Coburg next week, I didn’t have the time to have my package go around and around and eventually go back to the shipper. So, while Alex worked on Claudia’s tire valves, I spend the morning tracking down my FedEx package with the the Post Office. The tracking said it was delivered to the Post Office already. After almost two hours, I finally found it. It was sitting at the Post Office in Coburg. Nothing in life is simple.
I got dressed and headed out to claim it. All I had to do was show ID and I got my package. That was easier than I thought. I was also going to hit the mall and get a few Christmas presents, since I know where the mall is here. I have no idea when I will find another mall, so I wanted to cross it off the list of things to do. Being Black Friday, the mall was packed. It was around two-ish , so I thought it would be less crowded, thinking all those five AM shoppers would be done and home napping. I was wrong! It was one long checkout line after another. I guess the economy is getting better. I haven’t seen a mall this crowded with people carrying packages in a very long time. It didn’t take long for me to get what I wanted and then I was out of there!
Back at REVtown, we ate leftover turkey in the form of hot open faced sandwiches for dinner and started Transparent on Amazon Prime.
Thursday , November 23, 2017
It is pouring rain. Every so often, it stops. Once in awhile the sun pops out, but it doesn’t last long. Then the rains are back. We spend the day binge watching the last season of Longmire. Somewhere in our binge we have our turkey. A different kind of Thanksgiving.
Wednesday, November 22, 2017
It’s back to REVtown today with lots of rain coming down.
Checkout at the motel is noon. Alex grabs coffee and tea for us at the motel office and we have an impromptu breakfast of leftover burritos, biscuits and bananas while packing up. We take our last, long shower, operative word being long, that we will have till we get to a park with sewer. It will be “PTA” showers again till then. We start packing the car up after eleven. We want to stretch out our stay as long as possible. If we are lucky, Claudia will be out when we get to REVtown and we can just dump and go home. If not, it’s back into the waiting room.
The last step is getting the fur babies harnessed up and into the car. That doesn’t go quite so well. Queen Gizmo went first, scared but calm. Princess Poco Loco was next. Still not too bad. Prince Vino Loco decided we were going to play hide and seek under the beds and that’s when the fun began. He went under one bed. Alex tried to get him out while I held onto the girls. Then the other bed. I had to keep grabbing the girls and moving to the opposite bed while he tried to get our little boy. At some point in this game, Gizmo freaked. I was holding her leash when she bolted. Because she was attached to the leash she couldn’t go far, but was doing flips in the air smashing into everything trying to get away. I finally grabbed her and calmed her down. So I took her to the car while Alex brought out Poco. He went back in to capture Vino. A little while later. We were on our way home.
It was a few minutes before noon when we got to REVtown. No Claudia. I parked and waited while Alex went into the office to find out our status. When he came out, he learned they found a few other areas that needed painting because they were done incorrectly at the factory. It would be a while longer, but definitely by the end of their work day. We didn’t have the stroller, so Alex took Vino and I brought the girls into our private waiting room. He went back for the cooler so we could have lunch. I nuked leftover KFC chicken and mashed potatoes for Alex and while he was eating, Claudia came out, so he had to run to dump her tanks. I finished eating while he dumped, leveled and opened her up. When he came back he got to eat. Nothing like doing things in shifts! But, at least, we were going home now. And more importantly, we were done with REVtown. We could finally get out of here!
Alex took Poco and the cooler back while I waited. Then he took Vino and I took Gizmo, and we grabbed the rest of our stuff and went home. Claudia looked good as new. We still need to finish the paperwork. It was agreed to do it on Monday. There is no one staying here at REVtown over the long weekend, so it’s not a problem. The place is a ghost town. Only six coaches in the whole parking lot, and only two with anyone in them, us being one of them. We were planning on staying anyway, since we have a FedEx package coming on Friday when REVtown is closed. That would mean delivery on Monday, so we have no choice. Plus, we didn’t want to try to find someplace to stay for the holiday.
We unpacked the food and our stuff, put everything away, then headed to Freddy’s to get the last minute things we needed for Thanksgiving. The rains had stopped for a bit, so it was perfect timing. We were back before the next deluge hit, happy to be home.
Tuesday, November 21, 2017
We got to sleep in, which was wonderful, since we got so precious little sleep the night before. Alex ran out to McDonald’s and got Egg McMuffins, coffee and tea. I worked on our escape route and Alex went over to REVtown to check on Claudia’s progress. When he came back, he had good news. Claudia would be done somewhere around noon tomorrow. Checkout at the motel was noon, as well. If all would go well, we might be able to go from the motel straight into Claudia. Fingers crossed.
Monday, November 20, 2017
The herd of buffalo upstairs kept us up all night. We got NO sleep. The alarm was set for 5:30, but we got up before the alarm went off. No point in staying in bed. Alex had to go back to REVtown for six to meet the tech and get Claudia in for painting. He came back with breakfast from Mickey D’s.
We were so tired, we vegged out all day in bed watching television, mostly HGTV. We haven’t been able to watch since March. Nice to have basic cable. We ordered dinner from Outback’s and had a feast.
Sunday, November 19, 2017
It’s the last race of the 2017 NASCAR season, the Chase, and Alex has it on the television. Since we are three hours behind Homestead, the race starts here at eleven thirty. We finish packing things up while the race is on.
Check in is three o’clock. Around two thirty, Alex starts carting everything out to Sergio. There are only nine coaches in the entire parking lot, and no one next to us, so we had parked Sergio right next to Claudia, making it easy to load him up. It is drizzling.
The last step, after everything else is in the car, is the fur babies. The game plan is to get the harnesses on the kitties, with their leases attached. We would have to hold each leash, while we get the next kitty in their harness, then carry them out to the car. Surprisingly, they don’t move once the ordeal starts. Then it’s out to the car. Once the first one went in, I would have to stay in the car with them, while Alex brought in the slides and closed up Claudia. Alex carried Prince Poco Loco out and I carried Prince Vino Loco and Queen Gizmo Loco out to the car. They just sat, peacefully and patiently while we waited for Alex. Vino did his usual howling, but on a lesser scale.
Alex sat with them while I took care of check in. I requested a ground floor room and got one. While I sat in the car with the kitties, Alex carried everything to the room. Then we carried them in. I was prepared for Vino’s howling, but he surprised me. He was quite! Who is this cat and what happened to my boy? Instead of his usual noise, he wandered around the room with his sisters checking out the place. He was quite during the night. I wish I could say the same of the people in the room above us. All night, and I mean all night, the people above us sounded like they were moving furniture as they were practicing for a marching band. The quietest they were, was between four and five AM, and that was still noisy. We got NO sleep. We had to get up at five thirty, so Alex could get back to REVtown for six, to meet the service tech and get Claudia in for painting.
Saturday, November 18, 2017
When we woke up this morning, you couldn’t see the interstate. It was so foggy. It didn’t clear till noon.
We found and booked a Motel 6 about five miles away that is pet friendly. It is the closest to REVtown, plus it doesn’t charge extra for the fur babies. Others wanted fifteen dollars a night per pet. This will be an interesting experience, with our Mouth of the South, aka Prince Vino Loco. He doesn’t like change. I am preparing myself for his howling.
We spent the afternoon getting things packed up and ready. Everything has to come out of Sergio and the stroller has to go in. Next, we get our tote bags and backpacks out of the basement to use to load in clothes, food, things to keep us amused and the cat’s stuff.
We make the decision to go to Safeway and pick up the collapsable litter box we saw there, instead of trying to lug the big litter box we have in the coach into the car to take to the motel. Since we are out, we make our first stop at Camping World, to pick up a step rug for the top of the stairs. We have been using a small bathroom throw rug, but, the top step, which is really the floor of the coach, has the right side wall angled and nothing we do with any throw rug seems to work. It always moves around and, you have to fold the rug to fit the angle, making it a tripping hazard. The step rug idea came about because Alex met a fellow RVer, Rick, at REVtown. He has a Discovery like ours. On a visit to Rick’s coach, Alex noticed he used a step rug on the floor level step. Step rugs are anchored to the floor by industrial Velcro. When Alex told me about it, I was immediately sold.
At Camping World, we found the step rug and Alex found valve stems for Claudia’s rear tires. While we were on line to checkout, I got the idea that maybe Camping World had a collapsible litter box, so I went to check. They had a collapsible litter box and they had collapsible bowls, so we bought two orange bowls and the litter box and the other items. With these purchases made, we had no need to go to Safeway, so we headed home.
Friday, November 17, 2017
We’re up at 4:45 AM. It’s cold and pouring raining, again! There is supposed to be a temporary end to the rain sometime today and hopefully carry into tomorrow. At least, at six, when it’s time to go into the waiting room, it’s not raining. Small miracles.
Claudia is out around two. She has new doors. We get good news and bad. The good news is she is getting painted on Monday. The bad news is it will take three days and because of this wonderful wet weather, they have to keep her inside, and we can’t stay in her. Translation, we’re homeless! We have to go to a hotel. We need a pet friendly one that is close. Now we have to figure out how to pack up three cats, and us, to go live in a hotel room from Sunday to Wednesday. I am not looking forward to this!
Thursday, November 16, 2017
Cold and pouring raining, again! I don’t like Oregon winter!
We’re couch potatoes today watching Ripper Street on Netflix.
We get a call from Troy, our service rep, a little before noon. The doors are back and they want us in at six tomorrow. They plan on putting them back on Claudia and doing the alignments necessary to having them work properly. We are finally moving forward!
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
Pouring rain and windy. Only fifty degrees for a high. It’s the kind of cold that goes straight to the bone. The few leaves that have been clinging to branches are losing the fight. When we first came here, the trees were green. We watched them turn red and yellow. We saw the leaves fall. Now the trees are bare. Winter is here.
This is a day to stay in and work on our jigsaw puzzle.
Tuesday, November 14, 2017
It’s not raining, we have a brake in the action. We are allowed to sleep in a bit. They want us in at at nine thirty to finish off the warranty work. Claudia comes out after one and Alex dumps before he comes in to tell me we can go home. We are home and set up by two and we have a new bedroom television. Yippie! No more vertical lines.
Monday, November 13, 2017
We are in at six for some of the warranty work. We will know today if there is a game plan for the body repairs.
When Claudia came back in the afternoon, the damaged basement doors were gone and replaced with plastic. The doors were going out to have the skins made. It would be three to four days until they were back. Then several days for painting. We have been here over seven weeks already. If REVtown wasn’t doing this work, why couldn’t they have done this sooner? They had our insurance check for five weeks. Looks like we will be spending Thanksgiving in the Purgatory West parking lot.
We were out of cold cuts, so I ran to Freddy’s while Alex stayed with Claudia. One of us needs to be there to keep watch over everything we have in the basement that is now easily accessible to the world.
The sky was turning black again and I hoped I could get there and back without getting soaked. I had recyclable cans for the machine. This was a different kind of machine. I have been used to putting one can in at a time, but with this machine, you dump all the cans in, close the door and out comes your voucher. Of course Murphy’s law prevailed. Only one machine out out the half dozen was working and a couple was using it. They had garbage bags, plural, filled with cans. This was going to be a long wait. I thought about walking my small bag back to the car, when the woman told me to go ahead since I had so few cans. When I was done with the recyclables, I did my long wait on the deli line, then I picked up a few other things before going back to wait on yet another line to pick up some cooked chicken for dinner. Then off to the checkout, where, I naturally got stuck behind a woman with a galizzion coupons and a chatty cashier who forgot to scan in some of those coupons. Once the coupon fiasco was done, I was out the door. I walked down the access ramp and into the parking lot, when a woman in an SUV pulled right in front of me and stopped dead. So I stopped and maneuvered my cart behind her, when she suddenly decided to throw the car into reverse and plows into me and my cart, the entire time I’m yelling at her to stop. She finally stops, opens the car door, sticks her head out and asks if I am okay. A man walking from the other direction says, “that scared the shit out of me”, to which I replied “Me too”. So ended my fun trip to Freddy’s.
Sunday, November 12, 2017
Cold and raining, again. Winter in the northwest.
NASCAR and Ripper Street.
Saturday, November 11, 2017
Today the weather forecast is calling for a break in the rain, so we decide to go to King Estate Winery in Eugene for lunch and wine tasting. It’s about thirty miles from our new home in Coburg.
We drive through the vineyards on our way to the main building. It looks like an estate in Tuscany. We have sandwiches for lunch. Alex has chicken and a glass of dry Riesling, and I have a Reuben with a glass of Pinot Noir. After we eat, we go to the wine tasting bar and walk out with way too many pricey bottles of vino, one of which will be saved to celebrate our new home, wherever and whenever it may be.
We stop at Freddy’s to pick up a few things, then it’s home.
Friday, November 10, 2017
They’re not taking us in today. I didn’t think they would. Yesterday, they were saying how they had to get a coach done and out by Friday afternoon. Translation, we’re not going in.
We’re still in the rain event, so we pull out our jigsaw puzzle and spend the afternoon working on it. It’s Friday, so it’s pizza night.
Thursday, November 9, 2017
Six AM and we’re in for service. It’s been four weeks since we sat in the Purgatory West waiting room.
Only, by quarter to seven, no one had come to pick up Claudia. I had to go to the service desk to find out what the problem was. I got a BS story about some coach being in the way of ours and they had to deal with the SNAFU. This is the second time in a row they didn’t come out to get us at the designated time.
I had a lousy night sleep, so my packing for lunch was effected by it. Needless to say, Alex had to hit Micky D’s to get us lunch. It was a gourmet southwest salad or nothing!
When Claudia came home, her jacks were done and so we’re a few other things on the warranty issue list. Yippee! But, tomorrow makes seven weeks in Purgatory West. We are on call to maybe, possibly, go in tomorrow.
I changed my residence on Facebook to Eugene, Oregon.
Wednesday, November 8, 2027
Today is the beginning of a six day rain event. Six days of rain, clouds, fog, drizzle, and let’s not forget cold. The temperature is in the high forties. We might break fifty, but it doesn’t last long. I have never been a lover of cold. When I was a kid, my mom would bundle me up with snow pants, and sweaters, and hats, and gloves, and jackets, and send me out to play in the snow with my neighborhood friends, only to have me banging on the door to be let back in a few minutes later. She would say it took her longer to get me dressed than the time I spent outside,so you can see why this weather does not me me happy.
I have resorted to two pairs of socks and two pair of pants and I am finally feeling my extremities again. And this is inside with heat. I don’t even want to entertain the thought of going out. This cold and damp creeps into your bones and takes up residence. I can’t wait to head south to warm weather.
We got a call after one to tell us our jacks are in and we need to be ready for six AM tomorrow. Not bad! The last time we were in for service was four weeks ago tomorrow for the very same jack problem. At last we are going in.
Tuesday, November 7, 2017
Errand day. We know we have no chance of being called in today, since our rep is on vacation, so we can roam. First stop, Safeway, for a few sale items and to exchange our recyclable cans. Turns out this Safeway doesn’t have the recycle machines because they opened a facility up the road, so they discontinued service here.
After we drop off our groceries back at the coach, we head over to check out the Springfield Walmart. We were able to cash in our recyclables, but found not everything is eligible. Only the things you were charged a deposit can go into the machine. Anything else has to go to a recycle center. This is a disappointment to me. I always thought the west coast was so progressive and forward thinking, especially when it comes to the ecology. Instead, they squarely place the responsibility of the ecology on its citizens shoulders. You need to cart all your recyclables to a center yourself. Human nature would discourage this. Back east, municipalities make it mandatory, but provide a means that is included in your normal trash cycle. You are provided a bin for household trash and one for combined recyclables. Both go to the curb for trash pickup. Where this is the case, the recycle rate is above 80%.
Monday, November 6, 2017
It’s cloudy and cold. We were going to take a bike ride into town and have lunch, but forty degree temperatures with overcast skies and a good wind change our minds. Instead, it’s more Ripper Street and warmth!
Sunday, November 5, 2017
NASCAR starts at eleven on the left coast. After, we watch Ripper Street on Netflix. Love BBC television.
Saturday, November 4, 2017
We are going to the 22nd Annual Holiday Food and Gift Festival at the Lane Events Center in Eugene to scout out Christmas presents and see whatever other trouble we can find. There are over 120 exhibitors with one-of-a-kind gifts, making it one of the largest in the Northwest. We strolled along the vendor booths selling art, crafts, jewelry, clothing, wood items, photography, toys, and Christmas décor, to name a few. There are a wide range of food items like tea, chocolates, dips, coffee, jams, chili, sauces, and my personal favorites, wine and liquor that you can sample and purchase.
We made a few purchases as gifts, and got a few things for us and the kitties. They got new harnesses that they supposedly can’t back out of. Time will tell! We got our granddaughter, Jennah, a Christmas present that we sent to her early, so she would have it in time for her father’s memorial service next week in California. It is a silver pendent that she can put some of her father’s ashes in and keep him with her always. There’s also a family charm and an angel wing on the chain.
They had two train displays that brought tears to my eyes. They reminded me of my dad and the huge train setup he had in his basement that we worked on together. There was a hobby store on East 23rd in NYC that specialized in trains. I would stop in from time to time and buy different things to go with his setup. The craziest was a hotel with working elevator that came from Germany, complete with German instructions. We sat on the living room floor for hours with a German dictionary trying to put it to. Hence, the tears over the train displays.
We head over to BJ’s Restaurant & Brewhouse for “lunner”, the meal somewhere between lunch and dinner. Alex tried two different brews, Lightswitch Lager and Oasis Amber. He liked the Amber better, and so did I. We shared boneless chicken wings and each had a great burger that came with awesome fries. Afterwards, we took our purchases and us back home.
Friday, November 3, 2017
We have an 8 AM appointment next door to get Claudia’s windshield replaced. Naturally, it’s raining. The game plan is for us to put the kitties in their stroller, then Alex closes up Claudia while I get Sergio so he can sit in our parking spot. We are going to have to stay overnight at the glass place. Claudia can’t move while the windshield sets. Then Alex would drive over as I walk there with the kitties in the stroller. By the time I’m ready to leave, it’s just drizzling. Small favors.
This is going to be a longer day than siting in REVtown. These guys work till five and they plan on leaving Claudia in one place till the last possible minute. The waiting room is one giant room with two sofas and a television on one end, and a kitchen area on the other with lots of space in between.
Around three, the tech comes out to tell us they will be moving Claudia a few feet out of the service area and into the back lot in about forty five minutes. That’s where we will be staying, with an extension cord supplying 20 amp service. We can’t level because of the windshield, but we can put the bedroom slide out so we can sleep. It’s going into the thirties tonight, so we will be a bit chilly and a lot cramped.
Because of the electric situation, dinner consists of White Castle hamburgers from the microwave. We sit on the sofa and watch television. We’re so close to the TV, it’s like being in the first row at the movies. We want to wait as long as possible to open the bedroom slide, but we cave in after nine. Now we can get warm under the down comforter and watch television without the giant screen effect.
Thursday, November 2, 2017
When we brought Sergio in last week to have the hitch installed, we found out there was a recall for the clutch assembly. Our appointment to get it fixed is this morning at nine.
After we drop off Sergio, we walk across the street to the Cooler for breakfast. We had another great breakfast, stuffing ourselves on eggs, ham, sausage, hash browns and toast, and then wattled our way out the door. Since we had four to five hours to wait till Sergio was finished, we called for the dealer’s shuttle service to take us to Valley River Center, the local mall. We got there a little after ten and walked around a bit. I had made a nail appointment for eleven, so we found where the place was located. I went in to get my nails done and Alex went looking for a pair of shoes.
I was only in the nail salon a few minutes when my phone rang. It was the dealership. Sergio was ready! And it was barely eleven. That was the fastest four or five hours I ever spent! I told the dealer that it would be at least an hour before we would be able to get back there. He said it was no problem, we could come whenever we were ready.
It was after twelve when my nails were done, but our big breakfast made lunch out of the question. While we were deciding whether to stay at the mall or go home, my phone rang again. This time it was REVtown. Those elusive jacks still weren’t in and didn’t look like they were going to be anytime soon. Somehow, after three weeks, they couldn’t find them and were now escalating the situation up their corporate ladder. I reminded Troy, our rep, of how long we were here with nothing happening. I also reminded him that he has had our insurance money for a month now and nothing was happening. Why couldn’t our windshield get fixed? REVtown wasn’t fixing it. They were subbing it out. All it would take is a phone call to make an appointment for us. He agreed and would get back to us.
A few minutes later I got another call from Troy. This time with an appointment for our windshield at the business next door to REVtown. We had to be there at eight o’clock tomorrow morning. This made our decision for us. We wanted to get back to REVtown to get all the details taken care of.
We called the shuttled driver and started back to the pick up point. It was going to be about half an hour before he was able to pick us up, so we wandered through a few stores on our way. Being that our trip to the mall was cut short, we decided to come back one day next week to explore more and catch a movie. We would have plenty of opportunity next week when the new storm comes through.
The driver picked us up outside Penney’s. He had another passenger. She was our first stop at an office. She was just dropping off papers,so we had to wait for her. Then we all went back to the dealership. We took care of the paperwork and headed home in the rain to get warm and dry. Not loving the Oregon winter.
Wednesday, November 1, 2017
Today starts the beginning of a five day storm predicted to be rolling in. Lots of rain on the way. The clouds are moving in. We only have a little bit left to complete on our latest jigsaw puzzle so this is a good time to do it.
We’ve been waiting for the coach jacks to come in for three weeks now. We keep being told tomorrow is the day and then we can be called in. So we wait. Every day they are a no show. Today is no different. Maybe tomorrow will be better. Maybe they will show up.
Tuesday, October 31, 2017
Happy Halloween! And happy birthday to my youngest granddaughter, Ola!
Alex decided he didn’t like the new bike rack for Sergio, so we are taking it back to Dick’s. He found one he likes on Amazon, so I ordered it. Love Amazon Prime!
There’s a Walmart next door, so naturally we stop to pick up a few things. When you buy certain grocery items in Oregon, like soda or canned beer, they charge you a deposit fee. We haven’t been saving the cans for return. It’s not like we have the room to have recycle bins, but the other day the dollar amount hit home. We bought a twelve pack of ginger ale, a twenty four pack of Dr. Pepper and thirty pack of beer. We were charged six dollars and sixty cents for the return fee, ten cents a can. Since we’ve been here, we’ve probably thrown at least twenty dollars in the trash. Suddenly, we were going to start to return the cans. It’s a big pain to do this. You can’t crush the cans because the recycle machine won’t be able to read the bar code, so they pile up fast and take up room. We figured that we have to go to the store every few days anyway, so we would bring whatever we had and cash it in. Today we popped eight cans into the recycle machine and it spit out a paper voucher for eighty cents that we cashed in at the checkout. We’re starting to learn how to live in Oregon!
Monday, October 30, 2017
It’s rainy season. We finish off Stranger Things on Netflix.
Sunday, October 29, 2017
While Alex is watching NASCAR, I start looking for campgrounds near San Clemente for our stay for Jaysen’s memorial service. This is not going to be easy. While there are three campgrounds in San Clemente, none can accommodate a forty foot coach. I expand the search. The closest I can get is a resort in Newport Beach, about thirty miles away, starting at $73 a night. If we were going to be able to enjoy the amenities it had to offer, I might consider it, but we would be out and about the entire time. A giant waste of money just to park. All we really need is a basic campground. The search gets expanded. Now I am about forty miles east in Lake Elsinore. There are three possibilities, starting at $35 a night. The one we like the best offers a rate of $550 a month plus a $150 utility deposit. We could stay put and relax and enjoy the warm weather, fish and check out what the area has to offer. This is the park at the top of our list. We can’t book anything or even check availability yet. We don’t have a date for the memorial and we don’t have any idea what will happen with the coach. But, at least, we have possible campgrounds.
Saturday, October 28, 2017
This morning we stop at Petsmart to get kitty food and litter. Since there is a high level of chlorine in the water at Purgatory West making it undrinkable, we stop at Walmart to pick up more bottled water. Then it’s off to Dick’s to pickup our bikes.
Easy piezy, right? Wrong! Couldn’t be farther from the truth.
The bikes were ready, and after a few tweaks to the seats and handlebars, we were good to go. We purchased two bike beams, which is an extension bar for our bike rack. When we were at the checkout, the clerk found that Alex’s $400 bike was on sale for 75% off. The clerk returned the original price and charged us the new $75 price. What great luck! We walked the bikes and bars out to the car. That’s when out luck ran out!
Alex installed the rack on the back of Sergio and we loaded his bike on first. We took his off and tried mine. No matter how we tried putting the bikes on, and we tried for an hour or more, we couldn’t get the bikes to sit high enough on the rack or secure enough to keep them from moving around. The bike tires were inches off the ground and wobbled. We even went back in the store and got one of the bike techs to come out and give it a try, with no success. So, while I stood in the parking lot with two bikes, Alex went into the store to find a rack that would work. Fifteen minutes and two hundred dollars later, he returned with another bike rack. I went in and returned the bike beams since they weren’t needed with the new rack.
It was after two o’clock and our stomachs were hungry, so while Alex assembled the new bike rack, I walked across the parking lot to Jasper’s Deli and got lunch. It is amazing the amount of gambling in this state. This place had the back area, which was bigger than the front food area, for gambling machines. So many businesses here have some area setup for gambling. Reminds me of Vegas. And the television is loaded with commercials to get your gambling problems in line.
I brought lunch back and we ate while Alex finished putting the rack together. This rack worked, but Alex didn’t really like it. At least we could get the bikes home. It was after three by the time we got back to REVtown. We still had to get Claudia’s rack on her and set it up. That took another hour or so to get everything in line with the new bikes. Once we were satisfied with the adjustments, we took the bikes for a quick spin around the industrial complex, that is rapidly becoming our permanent home, before it got dark. Since our bike cover wasn’t going to be here till Monday and it is always raining or at the least damp and foggy, we covered the seats with plastic bags. That done, it’s time for a well earned cocktail.
Friday, October 27, 2017
Today makes five weeks here at Purgatory West. We have to close up Claudia to dump this morning. Not a favorite thing to do, but at least we can do laundry and run the dishwasher.
I checked the tracking on our bikes, and they were delivered to Dick’s this morning. I called to make sure they did get delivered and find out when we could pick them up. They would try to assemble them today, but probably tomorrow.
In the meantime, Alex assembles the bike rack for Sergio and makes sure it fits. It’s Friday, so that means it’s pizza night from Coburg Pizza Company. While we are eating, Dick’s calls to tell us the bikes are assembled and ready for pickup. We opt to pick them up tomorrow.
Thursday, October 26, 2017
We have an eleven o’clock appointment with Lithia Auto Stores, a Fiat dealership, in Eugene to install Sergio’s hitch. It’s only a few miles away. I pack up a bunch of magazines to take with me. I figure while we’re waiting, this is a great opportunity to catch-up on my reading backlog. Boy was I wrong!
Their service center is undergoing construction. The waiting room is a construction trailer that doesn’t have nearly enough seats for everyone. It’s standing room only. The bathrooms are in a different trailer. There is a bar across the street that is rumored to make a good breakfast. If they make a good breakfast, they should make a decent lunch.
We walk across the street to the Cooler, a bar with televisions all over the walls, pool tables, couches and, of course, tables. The interesting thing about the bar is it has all sorts of gambling; lottery, Keno, and video poker, to name a few. There is a room downstairs that is just for gambling. It’s almost lunch, but we both end up with breakfast, eggs and ham for me, sausage for Alex. The rumor was right, breakfast was good.
It’s after one, so we walk back to the waiting room. We were told it would be about an hour to install the hitch, so we were hoping we wouldn’t have to wait long. We were right. We were there for only a few minutes when the service tech came in to tell us we were done. Alex went to check out Sergio and I went to do the paperwork.
Sergio is now a macho man, a tiny little hitch is now sticking out of him. I’m not used to a one inch hitch. It’s so small. It looks like he has a man bun! It’s so cute! We’re one step closer to transporting our bikes. We go back to Purgatory in hopes of getting there before they close at 2:30, so we can pick up the bike rack that has been delivered. Success! Tomorrow Alex will assemble the rack and make sure everything will work.
Wednesday, October 25, 2017
We have been sitting in the Purgatory West parking lot for two week now with no service work being done. The only time Claudia leaves our parking spot is to dump, then she is right back like we never even moved. Alex checks with the service desk every day for an update, but keeps being told to hang tight, they will get to us. It is getting very frustrating, especially with a funeral looming. Funeral or no funeral, I would like to get out of here and have a life. The up side to all of this is no camping fees. That’s the only saving grace.
Our mail arrives today. That means plowing through piles of paper. So much for the morning.
More family phone calls, including a few with our granddaughter, Jennah to discuss what she will need to do and to try to console her. Unfortunately, we learn the accident was so bad, Jaysen’s body has to be identified by his tattoos. This is so heartbreaking.
Tuesday, October 24, 2017
So far this has been a strange week for me. Sunday was the twenty seventh anniversary of my father’s death. Anyone who knew him or me, would know how close we were. He was my best friend. We shared everything, not like parent and child, but like best friends, equals, soul mates. When he died I thought I would die as well. My mom was quite worried about me, but somehow, twenty seven years later, I am still standing and moving forward. This year, that sad day turned into something joyous. My favorite goddaughter, okay, my only goddaughter, Kimmie, got engaged to Shawn, the love of her life, while on vacation in Germany. Now that day could be remembered as something good. But life, as John Lennon puts it, is what happens to you while you’re making other plans.
I ignored the text I got after two this morning, thinking, at this hour, it was some dam east coast robo sales text or the Alaskan Ferry telling me of some ferry cancellation. When we woke, we discovered we both had the same text from our daughter, Vicki, telling us Jaysen, her ex, our granddaughter’s dad, was killed in a motorcycle accident during the night. He was only forty three. Our granddaughter, Jennah, was next of kin. Our nineteen year old granddaughter was about to leap into adulthood, now having to take care of a funeral and dispose of his possessions, all while dealing with his successful construction business. She was going to have to leave Florida and fly out to California to become the responsible adult.
The rest of the day was a tearful mess of phone calls, texts and Facebook remembrances. And it’s only Tuesday!
Monday, October 23, 2017
It’s bike day!
First stop is Camping World to check out their bike racks, bike covers and hitch accessories. If all else fails, they’ve got us covered.
Dick’s Sporting Goods has a bike Alex found on line that is a knockoff of the Townie that I like. The original price is more, but it’s on sale which makes it less. It’s all about the Benjamin’s, so we head over there. I already know they don’t have it in stock. The closest store is 209 miles away, gotta love the internet. We meet a sales person, Chris, who is very knowledgeable and helpful. He answers all our questions and makes suggestions based on our needs. He thinks the Townie knockoff is a great bike for what we want. Alex had tried a bunch of bikes Chris suggested and decided on another bike that fit his taller body. Both of us are happy with our choices, so Chris orders the bikes for us. They will be delivered to the store and they will assemble them for us for free. Can’t beat that. If, for whatever reason, they don’t work for us, we can return them and start the process over. Now all we need to do is solve how to get them home. Dick’s bike rack is more expensive than Camping World and not what Alex had in mind, so our next stop is Walmart, which is in the same shopping center. But first, lunch.
Driving around the mall, we spot a Mexican restaurant by the name of La Kora. It’s a cute place themed to look like a beach complete with a surfer shack, which is really the bar and service counter. After taco salads, we go over to Walmart. It looks kind of familiar. Once inside we realize we have been here before. This is not a superstore, but the tiny Walmart that doesn’t have much of anything. We do check out the bike racks and hitch parts, but again, not what Alex is looking for.
A long time ago, at Fort Desoto, we met a couple on their bikes that had the greatest cup holders for the stainless hot/cold cups. The same cups like we have. Now that we were getting bikes again, I ordered them. They are from Ibera. The problem is our big, thirty two ounce cups didn’t fit, so we are off to Bed Bath & Beyond to get something that will. Plus we need a few plastic food storage containers to continue the battle against our mouse friends. We’ve been winning the battle, and want to keep it that way. We get the exact same cups we already have, but in the twenty four ounce size and three containers that will fit perfectly in our limited food storage space.
That accomplished, I set our MapQuest for the only Walmart Superstore in Eugene. They didn’t have anything to speak of to solve our bike transport problem. We decided to find what we needed on Amazon Prime when we got home. With Amazon Prime, we would have it in two days and it would be exactly what was needed. After getting a few grocery items, we head home. It was dinner time already.
While I cooked, Alex finds what we need to get Sergio rigged to transport our bikes. After dinner, we order a bike rack, hitch tightener and bike cover on Amazon. Everything but the cover will be here on Thursday. Amazon Prime is the greatest thing for RVers. No shipping fees and you get your items in two days. Plus, I can watch movies and television and stock my Kindle all for the price of admission.
Sunday, October 22, 2017
NASCAR day. Alex watched the race while I lounged and read.
Saturday, October 21, 2017
Today we are going to brave the storm and go bike shopping, but it turns out, none of the shops are open on Saturday. We’ll have to move this to Monday. That idea being squashed, and with the pouring rain and thirty mile an hour winds, we are in, yet another day. Our old standby activity of jigsaw puzzles, is the itinerary for today. We start a 1,000 piece wizard and dragon puzzle and finish Mindhunter later at night. Now we wait for another season.
Friday, October 20, 2017
The storm continues with rain and wind. There are intermediate periods of calm, but it is a wet, icky day. They’ve upped the rain totals. Not a day for us to go out.
Today is four weeks that we have been here. In those four weeks, we got our fresh water tank fixed and the passenger window replaced. I think we should change our address to Coburg, Oregon. This is truly Hotel California.
We spend our day doing our homework on the bicycle and bike rack dilemma. Looks like the only way to get a bike rack for Sergio that doesn’t involve ruining his bottom or putting one on the roof, is to get a hitch installed. While this is more costly, us old folks won’t have to hoist bikes up and down. Something we don’t want to do. Much safer for us, now and in the future. The added bonus is the hitch can be used for other things when we are driving down the road. Since Alex had a duel receiver welded on the hitch we use to tow Sergio, the bikes will travel there, leaving Sergio’s hitch free for other things. Come Thursday, Sergio will have a new appendage.
I’ve got a list of local bike shops we will be hitting tomorrow. Now that the transportation situation has been taken care of, it’s full speed ahead for picking out our bikes.
The skies cleared up around two. We had blue skies, for a little while, then the rains were back. We watched a few more episodes of Mindhunter then got our pizza from Coburg Pizza Company.
Thursday, October 19, 2017
The forecast has a storm moving in today and staying till Sunday night. They are calling for 2-4 inches between now and Sunday. Winter in the west coast has arrived.
We have to close up and dump today. We can’t wait any longer. We time it with a break in the rain and then come back and setup again. Such a pain. We had hoped we could get lucky and time it with a trip in for service, but that hasn’t happened.
Being that it is still rainy, we’re staying in and working on our Disney jigsaw puzzle, the source of much teeth gnashing. We do, finally, get it done!
Wednesday, October 18, 2017
While hanging out waiting to get called in for service, I continue my scanning project. Alex works on securing my mom and dad’s urns in place, so I don’t have to move them to a safe location every time we travel. We lounge on the sofa and get a few more episodes of Mindhunter in.
I guess the jacks didn’t come in again, because we don’t get called in.
Tuesday, October 17, 2017
We sold our bicycles when we sold our home. The idea was to not take them to Alaska and deal with them on the ferry system. We would get new ones when we got back to America. Today is the day to begin the process of finding new bikes.
But first we stop at a tire place next door to Freightliner to see if they can extend the valves on the coach to make it easier to put air in the back tires. They can, so now we just have to work out the logistics of getting Claudia there. Life revolves around Purgatory.
Alex is jonesing for a burger, so we stop at Burger King for Whoppers. A quick stop at Fred Meyer and then it’s off to Paul’s Bicycle Way of Life on Charnelton Street in Eugene to start our bicycle hunt. We are looking for cruisers that can give a comfortable street ride while being able to traverse a bike trail.
This bike shopping stop has given me insight on one thing. I’ve learned my knees don’t work in cold weather, which rules out living anywhere the temperature goes below 65. While trying to get my bad leg up and over a bike, I didn’t clear the frame, so I took a fall into the bikes lined up along the wall. Ouch! Now I have a sore elbow and butt. This taught me I need what is known as, a flat foot bike. It’s got a low step through frame, making it easier to get the stiff knees up and over and when you’re stopped, both feet are flat on the ground, so you’re not balancing the bike on your toes. Guess this means I am officially old. What’s next, training wheels?
The winning bike was an Electra Townie for us both. It would take a week to get in. We weren’t sold yet, we still wanted to shop around, and the added complication was transporting the bikes. We can’t get them into Sergio, he’s too small and they’re too big. Our bike rack is for Claudia. I want a bike rack for Sergio so we can take the bikes to parks and bike trails, not just ride around in circles at a campground, so now we have to figure out how to make this happen. The bike shop had a bike rack, but it really wasn’t the greatest for Sergio. It would rub and wear on his bottom. Not good. We have some homework to do.
We made a stop at Batteries Plus Bulbs to get a new battery for my iPhone 5, yes, I know it’s ancient. It’s has been a psycho phone the past few weeks, so it’s time for a new battery. First new battery in five plus years. Not bad. Twenty minutes later, I had a normal phone again and we were on our way home.
Monday, October 16, 2017
We are waiting to see if we will be called in for service.
I work on my scanning while Alex works on Claudia’s batteries and basement. Another fun filled day in Purgatory West.
Sunday, October 15, 2017
Lazy Sunday. I lounge in bed watching Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock Holmes while Alex watches the NASCAR race on the big TV in the living room. A two o’clock race back east translates to eleven am on the west coast. It is strange getting used to the time things are shown on television in the Pacific Time Zone.
Saturday , October 14, 2017
We have heavy fog this morning. You can’t see I-5 or the mountains. As the morning progresses, it begins to clear up.
We take a ride over to Springfield to Cabela’s. I need to get the plastic rolls for our FoodSaver, and I would like to see if we can get a single propane burner to complement our grill. We don’t have Cabela’s in Florida, so it’s kind of a treat to wander through one. Sad to say, their plastic rolls are specific to their devices, so we strike out there and on the burner.
A trip to Walmart and a stop at KFC to pick up dinner, to satisfy my chicken addiction, and then it’s home again. After we eat, we start watching Netflix new series, Mindhunter, about two FBI agents and their investigation into serial killers. Serial killers fascinate me, so I’m hooked on the series. Got to love Netflix.
Friday, October 13, 2017
It was raining when we woke. The forecast was for it to clear in the afternoon.
Around 11 am we heard a big scrapping noise. A flat bed semi came unhitched on the street in front of our coach, at the parking lot entrance, causing a bit of a traffic mess. Since we got here, there has been site work on the industrial property across the street. Trucks and construction vehicles come and go all day. Today, one of those trucks didn’t make the turn out of their site successfully. The two guys in the truck went to work immediately, making calls and unhooking cables. About a half and hour later, they had the flatbed hitched back up and they were on their way.
Since it was raining, we decided to be couch potatoes today and watched Doctor Strange on Netflix. Great movie! Benedict Cumberbatch knocked it out of the park again.
Thursday, October 12, 2017
We are up at 4:45 for our scheduled repairs. Our passenger window and jacks came in and today is the day to install them. It’s raining as I make my way to my room in Purgatory. The kitties and I are settled in by 6. Alex waits with Claudia. At 6:45, Alex calls to see if everything is okay. He’s still waiting, no one came for the coach. At 7:15, Alex calls again. Still no one is there for Claudia. This time I go out to the office to see what is the problem. It turns out, the tech assigned to our coach called out. Nobody knew this? They get someone else to get Claudia and Alex finally comes to our room.
We caught up on some of our television shows while we waited and started Interstellar with Matthew McConaughey. We had to interrupt the movie when they brought Claudia out. They fixed my passenger window, a great thing. I wouldn’t have to listen to it rattle as we drove down the road and it could finally get opened up. The kitties would love this too!
As great as that was, the jacks were just the opposite. Decatur sent the wrong ones, so after the techs here in REVtown West removed the existing ones, they had to put them back. You would think somebody would check the records. Decatur replaced them in May. You would think they would check to make sure they had the correct part before pulling the existing ones out. They should have checked the paperwork and shipped the correct ones. Since Decatur is already closed, this matter would have to be addressed tomorrow. It will be sometime next week before we would get the jacks. Looks like we are going to be here for a long while.
Wednesday, October 11, 2017
The storm that started yesterday is still here today. It rains, sometimes heavy, and then stops, then starts the whole thing over again. We are not scheduled for repairs today, so we are staying in and working on our crazy Disney jigsaw puzzle.
Tuesday, October 10, 2017
REVtown is not the best place to be if you want to sleep in. Six o’clock comes and the diesel engines fire up. It is quite noisy. By seven, we’re up and a quick look outside reveals Susan is up. We put a pot of coffee on and I go out to tell Susan to come in when they are ready. I was going to make bacon and eggs, but McDonalds comes through once again. The guys go down to Mickey D’s and bring breakfast back.
Our neighbor packs up and leaves around eight thirty. After breakfast and a second pot of coffee, Susan and John say their goodbyes and are off to Portland and the rest of their trip. They will be heading east to be in Atlantic City by the twentieth for John’s 50th high school reunion. It was nice to get together and catch up. Hopefully, it won’t take us another forty years to do it again.
It’s almost noon when Susan and John leave. It starts to rain not long after. The storm is coming from the north. They are driving into it. We’re tired, so we spend the day vegged out on couch watching TV.
Monday, October 9, 2017
We have a 9 AM appointment at Freightliner, the manufacturer of our chassis, for an alignment. It is about a half mile down the same street we are on, so it’s not too bad. Since we don’t know what Freightliner’s waiting room is like, I pack up the fur babies and head into my room in Purgatory, while Alex heads to Freightliner. Alex and I begin texting. Turns out, Freightliner has a nice room with recliners and a television with cable, coffee and a vending machine. Somehow, I think I got the bum deal! I decide the fur babies and I are going to stay put, at least till lunch or the weather clears, whichever comes first. Right now, it’s cold and very foggy, so I’m not inclined to walk the half mile or so to Freightliner.
By twelve thirty, the sun is out and my stomach is growling. I text Alex that I will meet him at McDonalds, the halfway point between REVtown and Freightliner, so he can get his Big Mac and I can get something that vaguely passes as food for lunch. Since we have the kitties in their stroller, sitting inside is out of the question. There is a picnic table next to the garbage dumpster. Fortunately, it is enclosed with a wall. Unfortunately, there is a woman with two small girls eating there. Alex takes the kitties over to the table while I go in and get the food. When I get to the table and sit down, we learn the two girls are the woman’s granddaughters that she has custody of because their father, her son, made these babies with a woman who became a drug addict and then he took off. The woman has since cleaned up her act and grandma is here waiting for mom to come pick them up. Mom arrives with her new fiancé and proceeds to talk about one of the girl’s UTI, how to wipe a girl’s bottom to prevent a UTI, not being able to make the water bill, and other various topics I would prefer not to be involved in, all while smoking a cigarette. As we’re eating! Ick! I ordered a salad, something that takes time to eat, but I shoveled it down quickly just to get away.
We walked over to Freightliner to wait out the rest of the day. We had to pick up the stroller to get it into the waiting room over the furniture, it was a narrow opening. It was small room, but nice. One wall had recliners, part of a second had more. If you wanted you could stretch out and nap. There was a television with a gizzillion cable stations. I found Star Trek Voyager and was a happy camper. Coffee, a vending machine and bathrooms completed the scene.
Around three thirty, while we were sitting cooling our heels in the waiting room, I got a text from my friend Susan. We had been communicating for the last few days about getting together in Coburg. They would pass Coburg in route to Portland where her sister-in-law lived. Susan and I went to high school and college together, but went our separate ways afterwards. She moved to Vermont and me, well, I’ve lived in a few places since then. She and her husband, John, were doing their annual trek around the country in their Mercedes Sprinter visiting their family and friends. We were trying to see if we could get together. Today was one of the days that looked promising. She told me they were about two hours away from us. We told her we hoped to be out of yet another waiting room by then. When they got near, we were still waiting. They agreed to meet us at Freightliner. A few minutes later, we were hugging and kissing in the parking lot. A few minutes after that, we were finished and Alex went to take care of the paperwork and get Claudia. I packed up the kitties and we decided to all go back to REVtown.
Back at REVtown, we have a coach next to us that hasn’t had anyone in it, other than the techs, since it got here more than a week ago, so we had John back their Sprinter in the space between us. This way he could connect to 30 amp power at the utility pole. They wouldn’t freeze and could spend the night right next to us. That would help, especially if drinking were involved. We opened a bottle of wine Susan and John got in Napa a few days before, and ordered a couple of pizzas from Coburg Pizza Company. After the guys left to pick up the pies, there was a knock at the door. It was dark. I opened the door to find the owner of the coach next door. He just pulled in after driving twelve hours and wanted to put out his slides and sleep, but the Sprinter was in the way. Could we move it? Luckily, Susan had the key. She was going to move it altogether, but I figured we could maneuver it back far enough between our slides and his for them to be able to stay put. Too much drinking had already happened to be having them go anywhere else tonight. Even though we had consumed wine, we did it. Susan was able to squeeze the van into the space with me directing her. It was so tight, she had to get out the passenger side. When the guys came back, they couldn’t believe, first, that somebody showed up next door, what are the odds, and secondly, that we got the van into the spot between the coaches, utility pole and the slides. Susan and John had no choice, they were staying put till our neighbor left the following morning.
We spent the night eating and drinking and talking. Around eleven, they took the long walk to their house and we took the short walk to our bed. A good time was had by all!
Sunday, October 8, 2017
Prince Vino Loco has had a sneezy nose with a runny eye on and off for a few months. We had him to the vet in Soldotna back in August, and she told us to use baby nose drops. They seemed to work, but he flared up from time to time and we would give him the nose drops again. We thought he was better, but on Friday, while we were in the Purgatory waiting room, his right eye started to have a mucus discharge. I thought maybe it was allergies, since I wasn’t doing well in that room either. Another possibility was, since he thinks he is big balls Willie and picks on his sisters, he got hit in the eye during the night by one of them. A wack from one of the girls with their claws could do it.
I started to put my allergy eye drops in his eye. By Saturday, it looked a little better, not as much mucus, but still very red and puffy. I decided to make an appointment with a vet. Being that we are living on the road, we decided Petsmart was the best answer for now and future vet visits. They are all over the country and our fur baby’s records would be available wherever we were. We had a 10:30 appointment, so we packed up the Mouth of the South and off we went. The vet concluded Prince Vino Loco had conjunctivitis and gave us an eye ointment to use in both eyes. We were good to go.
Back at our house on wheels, Alex watched the NASCAR race, the first time in a very long time. We were without television for such a long time, so this was a real treat for him.
Saturday, October 7, 2017
Enough of being stuck in Purgatory! It’s time to get out and do something!
We have a few errands, then we plan on hitting a local craft brewery for lunch and going to the Cascade Raptor Center to see some birds of prey.
We need to stop at Freightliner to make an appointment to have Claudia get a front end alignment and her oil changed. Since we know REVtown won’t have the parts to do the body repairs by Monday, we figured that would be a good time to get this done.
Once the appointment is made, we go next door to Camping World, so Alex can check out a few things. Next stop is Safeway to get bottled water. Believe it or not, the water at Purgatory West is horrible. It is so heavily infused with chlorine that you can’t drink it even after we distill it. Forget using it to cook! You can smell it as soon as you turn on the tap. Your hands reek of chlorine just by washing them. It’s like pool water only worse.
By this time, our stomachs are getting hungry so we go to Hop Valley Brewing Company on West 1st Avenue in Eugene for lunch. They also have a Springfield location. Lots of televisions, each with local football games blaring, signal what’s to come. The place is filling up with fans sporting their team’s jersey. We find a table and order. Alex ordered one of their lagers with a turkey melt and I had a merlot with an Italian steak sandwich. Everything was very good. I stopped in the restroom and found the coolest faucet and hand dryer combination from Dyson. You put your hands under for water then move them under the bars for drying. When we were done, we drove over to the Cascade Raptor Center.
The Cascade Raptor Center has one of the largest collections of native raptor species in the Pacific Northwest. You can view nearly 50 birds of prey in large outdoor aviaries. It is open year round, but has shorter hours during winter months. It is supported by donations and admission fees, Adults: $9, Students/Seniors: $8, Youth 2-12: $6 and FREE to Members. The birds are in large outdoor aviaries that you view by walking along winding hillside trails. The gravel paths are steep in some locations. No dogs are allowed, including in parked vehicles, with the exception of service animals.
They have Bald Eagles, Golden Eagles, several different species of owls, kites and so much more. You might think this is cruel to keep such magnificent birds in cages, but the Center is just the opposite. As you walk the trail and read each bird’s story, you realize just how lucky these birds are. Each one was found with some life threatening injury. Broken wings, lost eyes, broken feet, lost nests as young, unable to fend for themselves or have a parent to teach them the skills to do so. The Center takes in these birds and does their medical best to rehabilitate them and set them free again. Most are successfully released. These birds are the ones that were too badly injured to be able to survive in the wild. They may not be the free creatures they should be, but they would not be alive, if not for the Center. Here they have a life and they are part of the Center’s educational program with a life expectancy greater than their counterparts in the wild.
Afterwards, we have one final stop on our list of errands, Fred Meyer, then it’s home.
Friday, October 6, 2017
Up at 4:45. Packed up the fur babies and into the prison cell we go by six, where we wait till after one.
Claudia is no longer leaking water. That’s a good thing.
Once she’s back, Alex goes to do the usual dump thing, while I gather the kitties and walk back to our spot.
Our new jigsaw puzzle caddy came in today, so we transferred out killer Disney puzzle to the new board and spent the afternoon being driven crazy by the insane thing.
Since it’s Friday, it’s pizza night at Coburg Pizza Company. The best part of the day!
Thursday, October 5, 2017
Still more of the same, scanning and cleaning.
We got a call today. The water tank is back, so we are scheduled to go in for service tomorrow at six.
Wednesday, October 4, 2017
More of the same. I am still on my scanning project. Amazingly, I have half a tote scanned in. Yippee! Only one and a half totes to go. Then I only have 8mm movies left to do.
Alex is still doing the Mr. Clean thing. Today, he is scrubbing Canada’s dirt from Sergio’s Tow Shield and cleaning the inside of Claudia’s slide outs.
Fun and games in Purgatory West.
Tuesday, October 3, 2017
We were up at 4:45 and I was back in my prison cell by six. Alex joined me once they came and took Claudia in to remove her ruptured water tank. Now we sit and wait. This was like sitting in a hospital, waiting for the outcome of a surgery on a loved one.
I watched Hidden Figures on Netflix. What a great movie. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Movies like that inspire me to learn more about the characters. Thankfully, Google provides the information.
Around one, we saw Claudia being taken back to our spot. Alex went to find out the outcome, while I started to pack up. Before I was ready to leave, he was back. And with good news. They were able to perform their magic with the water lines. We could stay in Claudia while the tank was out for repairs. That made our day!
Monday, October 2, 2017
We got a call around ten to see if we were around for them to come and get the coach after their lunch at 11:30. So, once again, we packed up the kitties and I set off for the waiting room. This time, I sat in the main waiting room with the kitties in the stroller. They just wanted to check out a few things and talk to us about the logistics of the repairs, so I figured it was easier to stay intact in the stroller. They were thinking we were going to have to pack up and stay in a hotel while the repairs were being made. This was not something we were looking forward to. Sergio is small. We were going to have to make multiple trips to get everything to a hotel. Stroller, litter box, cats, clothes. Pretty much each of those items would be one trip. Not to mention we would have to take what we normally store in Sergio out in order to get all this in.
Eleven thirty became twelve. Twelve became one. They hadn’t come for the coach yet. I sat with three very annoyed kitties in a stroller, in a waiting room of dogs and people. Finally, after one thirty, they decided we would just do this tomorrow. They would come for the coach at six, remove the water tank, and hopefully, cap off so we could stay in the coach. If not, we would be heading for a hotel.
Since we were closed up, Alex dumped and I walked everyone home. We made it back into the house around two. So much for having a productive day!
Sunday, October 1, 2017
I spent the day scanning in old photos. This project is going to take forever.
Alex spent the day working on Sergio, getting the lights doing what they should. For awhile, I had blinkers that were flashing psycho like. It is nice to have things working as they should. We still have the fog lamps to replace, but that may take some time before Alex can fix them. First, we will need a place that doesn’t frown on doing automotive works and secondly, the right tools.
Saturday, September 30, 2017
Errand day today. It’s hard to get out during the week when you are waiting to be called in for service. You want to be there to get the repair process moving forward.
While having breakfast and getting ready to go out, I got two loads of laundry done. Then we went to our favorite place, Fred Meyer, for groceries. Next stop, NAPA, to get Sergio’s light bulbs. He was getting put back together again and it was nice.
I have been jonesing for KFC for two weeks now, since leaving Alaska. I don’t know why, but I have. We just couldn’t find a KFC in our travels through Canada. Close, 40 miles, but not close enough. We googled KFC restaurants while we were in Washington and found the closest one, but took the lazy way out and got Fred Meyer fried chicken instead, simply because we were there and didn’t feel like doing the extra drive to KFC. Freddy’s paled in comparison. Edible, but nothing like KFC, or Roy Rodgers or Publix. So, after NAPA, my mapping skills took us to the KFC diagonally across from the auto store, where we got our bucket of chicken and sides to go. Can’t wait to get home and have dinner.
Friday, September 29, 2017
We were in bed when my phone rang. It was around 7:30. I left my phone charging on the dining room table last night. Given the time, I figured it was an east coast robo telemarketer, so I didn’t bother to get up. A few minutes later, it rang again. Guess the universe was telling me it was time to get up.
Alex had his phone turned off, so his call went to voicemail. One of mine did the same. It was a Troy, from REV Group, looking to get our coach in to check things out. Were we available? I called him back and we arranged for them to get the coach in about an hour. In addition, the SafeLite tech was coming back today with the correct windshield for Sergio. When it rains, it pours. I fed the kitties and Alex and I processed to pack things up. The kitties went into the stroller and off I went to sit in REVtown’s waiting room. Yippee!
When they finally came and got the coach, Alex joined me in the back office reserved for people with cats. The regular waiting room is small, a fraction of the size of the one in REVtown East, four sofas, three chairs and one round table with its own chairs. There is a television and a small kitchen area with coffee and a microwave. It usually is packed, especially in the morning, and there are dogs, lots of dogs. Being secluded in this office is nice. I can let the cats roam free. They have chairs and desk furniture to lounge on and windows to look out of. I don’t have people or dogs to freak them out. After the first few minutes of Prince Vino Loco and his howling, things calm down. We haven’t had breakfast, so Alex goes to the McDonalds down on the corner to get Egg McMuffins. A gourmet breakfast. What more can you ask for?
Not long after we finished eating our breakfast, the SafeLite tech arrived. It had been spritzing all morning and it was doing it now. Alex had to move Sergio into the overflow lot. We weren’t allowed to block the parking lot with our little windshield replacement. The tech set up a canopy over Sergio and went to work. A little while later, he had a brand new windshield. You could actually see beautifully out of it!
It was around one when we saw our coach come out of the service bays. Alex went and dumped, which worked out nicely for us. We would have had to dump today anyway, so by having to close up for service, we accomplished two tasks with one action. It doesn’t seem like a big deal, but it is a pain to have to close up Claudia just to dump. By 1:30 we were back home.
Being Friday, it was pizza night at Corburg Pizza Company for another great pie.
Thursday, September 28, 2017
While I’m doing my scanning project, Alex has an appointment with SafeLite. They are coming to REVtown to install a new windshield for Sergio. He will finally get rid of that cracked and nicked up disaster. The tech is coming between noon and five.
The SafeLite tech comes early. That’s a good sign. When he looks at the windshield, he decides to double check if he has the correct one. Fiats don’t conform to normal car standards. A phone call to the Fiat dealer later and he lets Alex know it’s not the right windshield. They are trying to locate the correct one. He can’t do the windshield today, they will have to reschedule once the get the right one. Sergio will have to go one more day with a busted up windshield!
Wednesday, September 27, 2017
I’m back on the scanning project. It’s a trip down memory lane. I have been posting a few of the old photos of family and friends on Facebook. I hope everyone is enjoying it as much as I am.
One of the people who seems to be enjoying it is Patti. I got to FaceTime with my oldest friend today. When I say oldest, I am not referring to years on the planet, but years known. We lived and grew up on the same block since we were about two or three. Wherever you found one of us, you would find the other there as well. Our parents were friends too. So many years of my life were spent at her house and she at mine. I can’t think of my young life without her being in it. It was so great to be able to spend time chatting. Miles may keep us apart, but nothing can separate hearts and souls.
Alex has started working on getting Sergio back in shape. First step, get him pressure washed at the same place Claudia got cleaned up. He took him over and for ten dollars they had him shining like new. Then he started working on the broken lights. He did his research and it looks like a trip to NAPA is in our future.
Tuesday, September 26, 2017
As mosquitoes are to Alaska, flies seem to be in Oregon. There are at least a half dozen parked on the screen door at any point in time. Yes, the screen door. It’s not Florida weather, but it is in the sixties and sunny. More flies are always hanging around outside. They follow you in. We are constantly swatting flies!
I got into a cleaning mood this morning. I have no idea what came over me! I decided to organize the closet that houses my camera equipment and other things. Sorting through everything and organizing the gear into bags gave me more room than I expected. I was able to get Alex’s sleeping bag in there and out of the car and still have room for who knows what else.
That being accomplished, I went back on scanning documents and photos. Alex is continuing the project of the basement.
As a news worthy note, there are eight fires still burning to the east, over the mountains. The smoke is covering the hills across the highway making your eyes water and your throat burn. Not a great day. But, hey, it’s sunny, what you can see of it.
Monday, September 25, 2017
We are called in to do some paperwork. Since they are going to be doing the bodywork repairs that are not part of the warranty issues, cha-ching, we are allowed to stay at REVtown. But, they don’t know when any of the repairs will start, so we are just going to cool our heels here for however long.
That being the case, it is the perfect time to do some of the tasks on the to do list. Alex starts on the basement cleaning. Pressure washing cleaned the outside of Claudia, but not in the crevices where water can’t get. Those hidden spots are still filthy. I start on my scanning project inside the coach. I have two jammed packed bins of photos and documents that need to go digital. This will take forever.
I learn on the news that Mount Bachelor ski area is open. They got a foot of snow this weekend. Mount Bachelor is less than seventy miles due east of us. I sure hope we get out of here before the snow gets to us.
Sunday, September 24, 2017
There is a Camping World not far from ReEVtown. We need a collapsible bucket to continue our Alaska Canada clean up and we can finally get a stand for the Weber grill. Yeah, no more sitting on the coach steps to barbecue with the grill on the ground. My butt thanks you!
When we get our purchases home, Alex gets the stand out of the box to begin putting it together. Chris, our next door neighbor on the other side, sees what Alex is doing and comes over. He tells Alex he just tossed the exact same stand into the dumpster because his daughter got rid of the grill and they don’t need the stand. He says there is nothing wrong with it, they just don’t need it or need it taking up the space. The two of them fish it out of the dumpster and he’s right, there’s nothing wrong with it. It is the same stand and will work perfectly. So, Alex cleans it up and puts the new one back in the box. Then it’s back to Camping World for a refund.
After a day of work it’s always nice to take a hot shower. But, it’s an icy awakening to discover there’s no hot water coming out of the shower or any other faucet. Alex checks the circuit breakers, the heater and everything else to no avail. Now we have a new problem! Cold showers, like in the days after Hurricane Charley. I hope they can fix this issue fast!
Saturday, September 23, 2017
Time to explore the area since it looks like we will be here awhile.
If we are going to get booted out of REVtown West, we will need to find a campground that can take us. We also want to get Sergio and Claudia washed. We are not allowed to wash them at REVtown. There is a truck wash at the corner, so we head over to check it out. They charge $1.50 a foot to pressure wash. For sixty dollars, Claudia will be nice and clean. A bargain at twice the price!
There is a campground down the same street as the truck stop, so we drive over to check it out. They think they will have a spot for us on Monday or Tuesday if we need it. That relieves some stress. There are two other campgrounds in the area, so we drive over to one of them, Armitage Park Campground, a county owned park. There are no open spots. Oh well, at least we have one option.
We drive over to Walmart to pick up supplies. This Walmart is like the one on Kodiak, just as small with not much of anything. Needless to say, we don’t get to cross much off our list. So, next stop is Safeway. I have a list of items that we like that seem to always stay on my list of things to get. Today is no different. I’m looking forward to the day I find them in stores again.
Back at the coach, it’s s time to store our groceries and have lunch. Afterwards, we pack up the kitties in the stroller and close up Claudia so Alex can take her to get washed. I move Sergio into Claudia’s spot so no one will take it. Drop in coaches, those without appointments, come in and will take the first open spot they see, so we want to make sure we don’t lose our temporary home. The kitties and I go for a walk around the neighborhood, all the way to the end of the industrial park and back, while Claudia is getting her bath. Once I got back to REVtown, I unlocked Sergio and had a seat. A few minutes later, Alex and Claudia were back. Claudia was spotless. All the dirt was gone and so were all the nasty bugs that were cemented into her windshield and grill.
While I was sitting on the coach step barbecuing ribs, I met our next door neighbors, Kathleen and Patrick. They were planning on going down to New Mexico for the hot air ballon festival once they escape REVtown. This has been on my bucket list. We didn’t get there last time we were out west and it doesn’t look like we will be getting there this year. I fear we will be stuck here for the festival. Oh well, next year.
Friday, September 22, 2017
Driving down the I-5, I see something the east coast hasn’t embraced yet, EV gas pump signs. EV stands for electric vehicle. Normally, when you drive down a highway, you see signs with a little gas pump letting you know there are gas stations at that exit. Here, there are those, plus signs with the little gas pump and the EV added. As goes California, so goes the nation. So the saying goes. Only a matter of time.
We’re off to Coburg, Oregon, or Purgatory West, as we all lovingly call it. This REV Group facility is right off exit 199 on the I-5. We pull in around one, park in front of the office and head in. Since our fresh water tank decided to rupture, we are considered an emergency walk-in. Troy, one of the service reps, greets us. We explain our situation, fill out some paperwork and get assigned a spot on the lot with water and electric. If we didn’t have the water problem, we probably would be in the overflow lot. But, since we can’t hold water, never thought a woman would utter those words, we need a spot that connects us directly to a water source. Troy tells us to stay put through the weekend, and on Monday they will decide whether we can stay there or if we need to go to a campground. They are booked, need every space, and probably won’t be able to get to us till the beginning of October. This is going to be another one of those long stays!
Since it’s Friday, it’s pizza night. Coburg Pizza Company is the closest. We order a large pie with green peppers, onions and sausage. Forty five minutes later, we take the very short drive down the block and around the corner to pick up our pie. Surprisingly, good pie with a thin crust. Guess we know where our Friday night pizza will be coming from for the next however many weeks.
Thursday, September 21, 2017
We’re leaving Bellingham and heading to Kelso, Washington. It’s about a hundred and fifty miles south on the five. It will be our last stop before landing in Purgatory West. We take some time for our neighbor Shane, to check out Claudia on the inside before she gets closed up. He lives with his most adorable dog, Nook, in his older Class A next door to us. We have exchanged pleasantries over the last few days and he is interested in what our coach has to offer and how things work. He can’t believe how much space she has inside when she is opened up. Wait till he she’s her closed. Not so much. After the tour, we hook up Sergio and head off.
Our home for the night is Brookhollow RV Park, about a mile off the I-5. This is considered a resort, partly because of the condition and amenities of the park and partly because of the price that comes with it, $45 a night. That seems to be the going rate for the west coast. This is the best value for the money we’ve seen so far. In addition to the usual showers, laundry and wifi, they have an exercise room and sixty one cable channels. After not having television for ages, we hit the jackpot. Paved roads with concrete site pads and concrete picnic table pads are separated by well manicured grass areas. The sites aren’t spacious, but they work. The entire campground is in a basin. There is a trail on top of the basin’s hill or river dike, about a mile and a half long that leads back to the highway, with a waterway on one side and the campground below on the other. People stay here for extended periods of time, even in winter, and I can see why. I could get used to this, if it weren’t so cold in the winter.
It’s still early after we set up, so my curiosity has the best of me. I want to see what there is to see on the top of the basin hill, so I climb it and that’s when I discover the trail and waterway. Alex stays behind, watching from the cockpit recliner with a cocktail. There is a parking lot on the road where people can start their trek. The wide path is a nice, small stone, compacted trail, easy to walk or bike ride. I follow it for about a mile, not knowing how far it goes. There is a mobile home park next door that is the scenery I see after our RV Park ends. On my way back, I see a man with a bicycle climbing the hill and I ask him the length of the trail. That’s when I learn it is a mile and a half. Then it’s back to Claudia, Alex and my wine.
Wednesday, September 20, 2017
Sergio is working today. He has two more dash lights on, it addition to the one that went on in Canada when his running light got shot out by the wonderful roads. Alex called a Fiat dealer and they said not to worry about the lights, it wouldn’t stop him from working, but he needed to be brought in when we can get there. That made us feel better.
We need to finish our errand list today. Tomorrow we’re moving on. Back to the Post Office, back to NAPA to return the dead battery so we can get a credit, then to CityMac, the Apple specialist place the Verizon guy sent us to that we never got to yesterday.
CityMac is located on the waterfront. If we came in on the Alaskan Ferry Highway like we had planned, this place would be next door. We had a few people in front of us on the service line. When it was our turn, the tech had us right as rain in only a few minutes. Not bad. The Verizon guy was right. This place could fix what ailed us.
It was early in the afternoon, but we decided to go home and get ready for our continuing journey.
Tuesday, September 19, 2017
Today is errand day. Foremost on the list is Verizon. Also on the list is Walmart, the Post Office, and getting my nails done. My nails should strike terror in the salon’s heart.
We drive over to Fred Myer to pick up supplies. After a quick stop back at the coach to drop everything off and grab some lunch, we head over to Verizon, hoping to get our iPads and iPhones working like they should. Canada and Alaska have not been kind to them. Mail issues, syncing issues, out and out slow speed. Hopefully, we can leave all that behind.
There is a nail salon next to the Verizon store. While Alex gets started with the Verizon guy, I walk next door to make an appointment then head back. Once I enter the store, it’s quick to see the guy doesn’t know how to help him. I start with my list of problems and he finally tells us his Apple expert is off today and we would be better off going to this other place where they specialize in Apple products. I put the address in my MapQuest and we head out. Alex is going to go to Fred Myer, which is in the same mall, and I head next door to get my nails done. When he’s finished, he comes back to the salon. Once I’m finished we’re off to the Apple specialist.
Or so we think!
We get into Sergio and I turn the key. Nothing! He’s not turning over, no lights, nothing! Then the dash looks like he is having a stroke. Everything is flashing and freaking out. Then nothing. It’s two days before his fifth birthday. Guess he wants a new battery for his birthday!
Since we’re in Freddy’s parking lot, the first stop is their automotive department to see if they have a battery for Sergio. No luck. They do have a jumper pack, but it takes twenty four hours to charge. That doesn’t help us now. Costco is across the street. I start the walk to their store. It’s not as close as it looks. When I get there, I am prepared to get a membership if they have a battery for Sergio, which they don’t. I talked the automotive manager into allowing me to take a jumper pack back. Since I don’t have a Costco card, we negotiated him holding my Sam’s Club card as collateral. I walked the heavy jumper pack back to Alex and Sergio. We got some life in Sergio when we hooked the pack up and turned the key, but the pack didn’t have enough of a charge to turn over the engine. While I was gone, Alex called Good Sam Roadside Assistance. Their ETA was in an hour and a half.
I walked the jumper pack back to Costco and got my Sam’s card back. They suggested we go to NAPA for a battery. They seemed to have the largest selection. We called the nearest NAPA, and they did, in fact, have the battery we needed, but they close at six and the Good Sam guy wasn’t due till 5:45. We weren’t going to make it in time. We might need to get the Freddy’s jumper pack after all.
I made the trek back to Alex and Sergio. A few minutes after I returned, the Good Sam tech appeared, an hour ahead of schedule. He had a great little, emphasis on little, and light, jumper pack from Harbor Freight that instantly did the trick. Sergio was alive, but we knew not well. He didn’t have Sergio’s battery with him. After a few phone calls, he couldn’t locate our battery with any of his contacts. We had to move quickly. We drove to NAPA and while I kept Sergio running, Alex got our life saving battery with a few minutes to spare. With Sergio being a stick shift, I can’t tell you how stressful that drive to NAPA and back was. If I stalled him, we were stranded again. Luckily, I didn’t stall him. When we got back to the campground, Alex replaced Sergio’s battery. His dash had a few lights flashing, but he’s working on his own again. Hopefully, once he goes to sleep for the night, he will reset. If not, we will need to find a dealer to get him checked out.
Monday, September 18, 2017
Since we are staying the extra days, it’s good housekeeping time. Claudia is filthy inside and out, so today is the perfect time to clean her stem to stern, top to bottom. We can’t wash vehicles in the park and there isn’t an RV Truck wash around, so we can only get the inside cleaned. While Alex works on the basement, I spend the day dusting, vacuuming, scrubbing and mopping inside. There is dirt just about everywhere. I have to do more loads of laundry than I can count. Bedding, afghans, rugs. Everything needs to get washed to get the dust off. The end result was well worth it. We’re clean. It’s nice to finally get rid of the Canadian and Alaskan dirt.