"if you are not living on the edge, you are taking up too much room"

Thursday, October 29, 2009

chuggin thru the week

The weather has been pretty nice the last few days. I have been fairly busy at work and I guess I wore my computer out! The thing crashed on me 4 times in the past couple of days. The first time was Tuesday and after it shut down and I rebooted my air card wouldn't hold a signal. I could dial in and connect but then it would disconnect after 30 seconds. I called the help desk and was on the phone for about 2 1/2 hours while he removed and reloaded programs to get me going. Wednesday morning it worked just fine but crashed around noon and the air card started acting up again. This time I was on the phone for 4 hours but I think it's finally fixed. At least it didn't crash today.

Wednesday, after my marathon phone call with our IT Support, we headed to Lebanon on the bike. The weather was cool (63*) so we bundled up for our ride. We both have leather jackets and I wear leather chaps. Rudee wears her rain suit pants and after putting on our gloves and helmets we stay fairly warm. We had a nice ride and had 23 people show up at the restaurant. The food was really good and I think everyone liked their meals. Rudee and I tried a crawfish dip appetizer that was really good as well as sharing a steak dinner.
We enjoyed being able to ride the bike but I think our riding days are numbered for this year. The weatherman says it is going to rain for the next 2 days and turn cool again. We will be going to Charla Rose Campground in Waynetown this week end for a group camp out with some of our motorcycle friends. The weather has us convinced to leave the bikes at home but we are looking forward to nice relaxing week end even if we can't ride. I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

not "warm and fuzzy"

Well we are back at the grind. This week is shaping up to be a little busier for me. Monday I was told to be at a meeting in our office at 2pm to meet the "new boss". I had already scheduled 2 inspections and was trying to make contact to set up a 3rd one when, at 10am, my supervisor called me and said the meeting had been changed from 2pm to 11am. Geez, thanks for the notice.

The meeting was different than I expected. Not only did we meet our new Regional Claims Manager but the VP of Claims was there as well as a rep from HR. The whole office had a look of doom when they introduced themselves. The RCM gave a presentation on what was going to happen in the next several months. They are going to combine our office with their existing office which was really no surprise. Why pay for 2 buildings. He also announced that there are almost 400 duplicate personnel between the two companies. We each have to take and pass screening and certification tests and then we will be evaluated individually and, if you are good at your job, there is a company need for additional people in your position and enough work, you can keep your job.

Suffice it to say I didn't have that warm and fuzzy feeling leaving the meeting. They did a lot of corporate cheerleading which was almost laughable. Here is a room full of people who have been going to work every day expecting it to be their last and these folks are talking about how the company has it's own production studio to make in house training movies and how many perks the "home office" has. Pitiful.

Well I guess the good news is I still have a job. My testing is scheduled for sometime in February and will be after the supervisors take theirs, so I should be OK for a few months anyway. Rudee and I have been going over our options and are getting a plan together in case the "sky falls".

Today was cloudy, cool and damp here. The leaves are really falling and our patio carpet is covered. Tomorrow is supposed to be a little better. We are leading the ride to the restaurant for our Wednesday night Goldwing get together. We are going to a restaurant in Lebanon so it wont be much of a ride but will be nice to see our friends. I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Giddy Up

Wow, this week has been a blur. We were able to ride the bike to the Goldwing meeting Wednesday night. The tempeture was a bit cool for the ride home, but not intolerable.
Thursday and Friday were typical work days and besides meeting Steve and Trish for dinner Friday evening, nothing exciting happened.

Saturday morning I was up at 4am again. I just woke up and couldn't go back to sleep :-(. We were planning on getting up early anyway. Rudee had organized a trip to the horse track in Anderson Indiana for the motorcycle group. The weather was pretty cold and dreary. Good thing we had reservation in their clubhouse/restaurant. Rob and Jany Runyon had invited us to meet them at Flapjack's for breakfast which was good as usual. We met the rest of the group and car pooled for the hour drive to the track.

There were 19 of us present. The club house has terraced style seating right at the finish line of the track. Every table had a nice view of the track as well as a TV showing the race broadcast. The races started at 12:30 and we were able eat our meal, watch the races and, of course, place our bets right in the club house. I did venture out into the cold for a couple of quick shots. Here they are coming down the stretch.

and the winner. (NOT the one I bet on :-0).

Rudee and I didn't do too good on our bets. I think I lost a total of $40 and Rudee lost $35. I would study the program and try to find "the" horse (like I know what I'm doing, ha!). We also did a quick walk through the attached casino but didn't stay long, too noisy.

We had a great time even though we didn't hit it big. We made it back home around 8pm and I headed to bed shortly afterwards. I was one tired old Dude.

Sunday we had agreed to take Rudee's Dad and Mom to Terre Haute to see her brother who was in town. Jerry and Diane are fulltime Rvers who live in their Carriage 5th wheel. The rig and Diane are back in Colorado where she is working. Jerry made the drive back to Indiana for this visit solo and was staying at his step daughters home. We got a call from Rudee's Mom just as we were leaving the 5th wheel and she said she was not feeling well. She was having pains in her chest and back and was congested. She said she felt like her pleurisy was acting up. We headed to Plainfield and took her to the hospital to get checked out. Well needless to say that took most of the day. They finally decided she had the start of pneumonia and admitted her for treatment. Hopefully she will feel better after they give her some antibiotics and she gets some rest.

We picked up a pizza on the way home and made it back around 7pm. Like I said, this week has flown by. I have a meeting at work tomorrow to meet our new Regional Manager. They have set aside 1 1/2 hours for the meeting so I'm not sure what will be discussed, heck fire, I didn't even know we were getting a new R/M. I wonder what happened to the old R/M? Guess I'll find out tomorrow and maybe get some insight on my future as well. I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

getting nicer

Monday was cool but the outlook was for a warm up. Rudee was back at work in her little cubicle here in the 5er. She doesn't have a huge area but she seems to like it just fine. She'll like it even better when the snow and ice start covering the roads and she doesn't have to venture out.

I started the morning out by downloading 2 new assignments and headed out the door. The sun was shining and the air was crisp, it was a perfect fall day. I finished up my work and was back home by 2pm and it had warmed up to the low 60's. I decided to get up on the roof and mount the vent covers we bought when we went to Elkhart and bought the new table. These covers are vented and allow you to open the crank up vents we have in the ceilings of our bedroom and bathroom when it's raining or when we are moving down the highway.I gathered up the tools I would need as well as the 3 vent covers and climbed onto the roof. I have never been real steady on my feet and have not been a fan of heights so me being on a roof is recipe for disaster :-).

The install went pretty easy and Rudee only had to come outside one time to toss a bolt that I had dropped back up to me. I did have one minor screw up. After mounting all the covers I forgot to have her make sure all the vents would crank open and closed. I got everything put away and went inside only to find out two of the vents were scraping the covers. Rats!! It was an easy fix though, just a little adjustment but I did have to get all the tools back out again :-(.

Today was even nicer weather wise, than Monday. The temperature actually reached 70 and Rudee turned the air conditioner on for a little while this afternoon. She wanted to open the windows and let the breeze in but we had another issue that prevented it. We have been invaded by Lady Asian Beetles. There are swarms of them all over. Somehow they are getting inside the 5er as well. I think they may be coming in around the slides. They look like lady bugs but are orange with black dots. I looked on the internet and they swarm in the fall for a very short time, usually after the first cold snap followed by a warm up. Rudee had killed a ton of them before I got home and then I took over "bug patrol" and killed a bunch as well. I sprayed Raid around the slideouts but don't think it did much good. They were crawling all over our 5er as well as all of our neighbors. I guess we'll just have to put up with them for a few days until it turns cold again.

We were leaving to go and pick up the motorcycle and found that the maintenance guy here at the KOA had set our 100lb LP tank outside our door. I'm not sure when he did it or why he didn't knock on the door to tell us, but it was nice of him to bring it over. I bought a 2 wheel dolly to wheel it around on and gave it to him the other day so he could get the tank filled at his leisure and then I could wheel it around instead of having to muscle it around. I wheeled it over into place and hooked it up. During this last cold snap we went through one tank in 7 days which is 1 gallon per day. That's not too bad and this larger tank should last between 3-4 weeks.

Rudee is organizing a trip to the horse track for the Goldwing Chapter for this Saturday. We have reservation in the clubhouse restaurant and they also have a casino next door. Should be a fun day. I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Frosty week end

Rudee was able to get off work at 3:00 and I had made it home around 2:00pm. I had a few things to do for work and was able to get started the hooking on process about 2:45. I pulled the semi around and got hooked on and then noticed that the passenger side outer rear tire on the truck looked low. Well to be more accurate, it looked flat and it was !!

Last week I had taken the truck into the Goodyear store in Lebanon and had replaced the passenger side rear duals with brand new tires. Needless to say I was not too happy to see they had no air. I got out my air hose and started airing the tires back up to see if I could spot the leak. The tires hold 110 lbs of air and it took a long time to get them aired up. Rudee had finished the inside packing and came outside and started doing all the things I normally do until I finally finished the tires. There was no hissing of air and everything appeared normal so I finished up the packing and checked them again before pulling out. They were both holding air so I figured I could at least make it Lebanon and stop at the tire store if need be. Rudee followed me out of the campground and onto I-74. We exited at SR 32 and I stopped again to check the tires. Still looking good so I decided to go ahead and go to the campground and we could deal with the tires later since they seemed to be holding air fine right now.

The drive to the campground took about 1 hour and the tires held air just fine. We checked in and got parked in our site and set up. We had a nice long site with a gravel pad and a nice big shade tree. We did have full hook ups but the power was only 30 amp but that's OK we don't have to have 50 amp, just can't run the fireplace and coffee pot at the same time :-). The campground was having a "themed" week end and we put our decorations up.

Saturday morning several of us went out for breakfast. I checked the tires on the truck before we left and they were low. Crap, I got a leak. I called the tire store and they said I could bring it back in anytime. Rudee and I headed for Lebanon as soon as we got back from breakfast. They got us in fairly quickly and found the problem. I have a pressure monitoring system that has a hose hooked to each valve stem and then to the gauge. when they mounted the new tires they had not tightened one of the hoses tight enough and it was leaking. They fixed me up and so far so good, we still have air!!

Amanda brought the kids over so they could trick or treat. They all got their costumes on and we walked through the whole campground filling their bags with candy.

The campers went all out decorating their sites.

Here is a a couple of "spooks" tying the knot.

We even got to meet Scooby Doo.

The kids got more candy than they will ever eat and had a great time. The weather was pretty cool but no rain (or snow!!).

Sunday morning there was frost everywhere. The skies had cleared overnight and the temperatures dropped ............ brrrrrr it was cold. We didn't get in any big hurry to pack up and instead sat around the campfire watching the early birds leave. Rudee heated up some leftover veggie soup for lunch. We figured we had better get a move on or they would charge us for another night, so we started packing up. We pulled out of our site around 2:45 beating the 3:00pm check out time.

I had Rudee lead in the Dakota this time. I think she liked leading better than following, more to see :-). We made it back just fine and got set up again in our spot here at the KOA. We really enjoyed the camp out and spending time with our friends and of course seeing our grand kids. The weather is supposed to warm up some this week. I'm glad because I'm not ready for this cold yet! I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

wet and cold

This week has been cold and damp. The rains started early Wednesday morning and we haven't seen the sun for a couple of days. :-(

Yesterday the temperature never got out of the 40's and today wasn't much better. I am getting a few more assignments this week compared to last, not busy but at least I'm doing something.

The usual Wednesday night motorcycle dinner ride was rescheduled for Tuesday night and was to be a wiener roast at our Chapter Director's house. We had to make a last minute trip to Brownsburg and met Rudee's parents there so just decided to get something to eat with them. Neither one of us was looking forward to sitting outside in the cold cooking a hot dog but we missed visiting with our friends.

Today we had more rain, cold and gloomy skies. Rudee had to go into the office for a team breakfast and she left just before I did. When she had to report to the office every day she always left 30 minutes or more before me and now she can sit at her desk in her jammies all day if she wants. Pretty nice gig, huh? :-).

After work I bundled up and pulled the bike out from under the 5th wheel overhang. We refer to it as our "carport". Rudee followed me over to Mike Kadingers rental property. Mike offered to let me park the bike in his garage for the winter and I had called him earlier and asked if I could park it there for this week end. We are going camping with the motorcycle gang but the temperature will be too cold to do much riding so we are parking it rather than packing it.

The campground has been busy this week. The past weekend the place was packed! We drove around and counted 3 sites empty. We finally figured out that the crowd was due to the Covered Bridge Festival in Parke County Indiana. This festival lasts for 2 weeks and is the biggest one I have ever seen. There are craft booths, food booths and flea markets in every town in the county. We have been several times and enjoy the festival but hate the crowds. They also have mapped routes to the covered bridges that are still in place around the county. They say there are more here than anywhere else.

Rudee is getting off at 3:00 tomorrow and we should be able to roll out soon afterwards. We are heading for White River Campground in Cicero Indiana. This is one of our favorite campgrounds but it has gotten difficult to get into. This week end is their annual Halloween party and we made this years reservations before we headed home from last years party! We hope the cold doesn't keep all the ghosts and goblins inside! I'll keep you posted/

Monday, October 12, 2009

another project done

Rudee and I did a little sleeping in Sunday morning. I finally got up around 9am and made the coffee while Rudee cooked up some bacon and eggs. AAAAAHHHHH this is livin!

After breakfast I decided to at least get a couple of things done rather than just lay around being lazy all day. I decided to go ahead and attach the new LP hose so we will be ready to attach the 100lb tank the campground is letting us use this winter. Rudee came out and together we had that little chore done in no time at all.

Saturday on the way to the festival we stopped at Gardiner's Rv in Lafayette. Steve needed a new sewer hose. His came out of it's holder and he drug it on the highway for a ways before he noticed it. I looked around the store some and found this LP gas monitor.

The LP gas system on our 5th wheel has 2 tanks. Both tanks are hooked to a regulator and when 1 tank runs dry the regulator automatically switches to the full tank. There is an indicator on top of the regulator that turns red when the tank goes empty so you can tell at a glance that you need to fill the tank. It's a good system but the regulator is only accessible through one of our outside compartments and I tend to forget to look and see if the gauge is red or not. In the winter this could be a hazard if we totally run out of propane at 2am and it's butt cold. This monitor has a sensor to hook to the regulator gauge and is hardwired to the monitor which you mount somewhere inside your rig. When one tank runs out and the regulator does it's auto switchover there is a light that flashes on the monitor. The light continues to flash until you fill the empty tank. Pretty cool huh?

We decided to go ahead and try and get it mounted as well. I tested the thing before running all the wires and then Rudee and I got to work figuring out where to mount it. We decided on the bathroom wall figuring we are in there pretty regularly plus we could run the wire up through a furnace vent in the floor. The whole install took about 30-45 minutes and went pretty smooth. We tested the unit again and it worked as advertised. Now we can tell (without going outside!)when the gas runs out on one of our tanks (including the 100lber) and can get a refill without taking the chance of running out completely.

Yesterday was my sisters birthday. Happy Birthday Paula!

I think Fall has arrived to stay here in Central Indiana. The temperatures are supposed to be cool all week. We have a camp out planned for this week end to White River Campground in Cicero, Indiana. They are having their annual Halloween Camp out complete with trick or treaters. Amanda will bring the grand kids and we are looking forward to some "spooky" fun. I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, October 11, 2009


After work on Friday we loaded into my company car and made a trip to Camping World. I needed to get a propane hose for the 100lb tank we are adding. Camping World is on the south side of Indianapolis right off I-65. We headed to Lebanon and got on the interstate there. We hit Indy right at rush hour which should be named "no rush" hour. The rain was off and on and the traffic was terrible. Several times we came to complete stops and rarely went over 40 MPH.
We made it to the store about 20 minutes before they closed and locked the doors. They had a big selection of different hoses but a nice young lady helped me find what I needed. We also purchased a skirt that will enclose the area under our bedroom overhang. This will give us an enclosed storage area for our bicycles as well as providing some protection from the cold winter winds.
Niles had called and asked if I could pick up some truck parts for him at the Freightliner dealership so we made that stop as well. I still had a gift card for Red Lobster that my kids had gotten me for my birthday so that was our choice for supper. Good choice!! I know some of you that get to spend time on the coast are probably scoffing at my restaurant choice for "good" seafood but we are pretty limited here in the corn belt. :-)

Rudee called Niles and we met him and Deb at Denny's in Lebanon and had desert there. We enjoyed "trading lies". I guess we were there longer than I thought because as we were leaving the "late night" crowd was just starting to come in. You know the types. Multi colored hair, pierced noses/cheeks/lips (and who knows what else) and the odd clothes. Brings back memories of working the midnight shift at the Sheriff's Department. :-).

Saturday morning we met Steve and Trish at their house. We were all going to the "Feast of the Hunters Moon". Steve had gotten called into work but was back home shortly after we got there. He drove his police car hoping we could get preferred parking and it worked. They parked us at a fire station about 3/4 mile from the festival entrance and drove us in on a golf cart. Cool!!

The festival is held at Fort Ouiatenon in West Lafayette, Indiana. History tells us that the French established a trading post and Fort here back in the 18th century. The festival re-enacts the events of traders arriving from the North and the fur trappers and Indians from this region. There were "camps" set up and a large number of re-enactors spending time in their camps.

They had drum and fife corps that were performing and lots of food and craft tents.

We enjoyed looking thru the area and seeing all the hand made items for sale. This guy had an interesting hat.

We caught a ride back to the car and headed back to Suter's home around 3pm. They were meeting someone that evening so we said our goodbyes and hopped into car as soon as we got there. As soon as I drove away I knew we had a problem. The right rear tire was flat :-(. I pulled back to Suter's and Steve and I put on the doughnut spare so we could make it home. I will take the car into the shop first thing Monday and get the tire fixed.

Sunday we hope to sleep in some and have a quiet morning. We'll see and of course I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

still slow, still soggy

Things are still slow at work. I finally got an assignment late yesterday. Whew, I thought they were trying to tell me something :-).

Wednesday was still cool but at least the sun was shining. Since my work was slow Rudee decided I should get some things done around the house and I couldn't agree more so I got to work.

I got out my drill and hole saw and Rudee got out my medical card and had my life insurance policy handy :-). Our new table needed a hole into the hidden compartment for the power cords to my various chargers. I'm happy to say I got the hole drilled and still have all my appendages intact!!

Next on the list were some outside chores. I had purchased a small section of white drinking water hose in order to move the water softener tank into the heated basement compartment of the 5er. I fixed it up while dumping the black tank. Hey, look at me!! I'm multi tasking :-)!!

I had also picked up a new anode rod for the water heater. The anode rod is screwed into the tank and the minerals in the water that are harmful to the tank and cause corrosion are attracted to the anode rod and "eat" it up instead of the insides of your water heater. I change ours about every 2 years. The old rod was probably 75% gone so it was time. Here I am using more tools and not bleeding. Amazing!! Rudee keeps looking out the window with her cell phone in hand, of course after 31 years she has learned to keep the phone close and to have 911 on the speed dial :-).

The weather held up and we decided to ride the bike to our regularly scheduled dinner ride. We met Bill and Jane here in Crawfordsville and rode with them to Lebanon and met the rest of the gang there. We had 9 motorcycles in our group and rode to Noblesville to the Sandpiper Restaurant for dinner. It was more bar than restaurant and was very dark and smokey but the food was good and the company even better. We headed home around 9:00pm and it was cold!! The temperature had dropped into the mid 40's. Rudee and I both bundled up in pretty much anything and everything we carry in the bike to wear. BRRRRRRRR. We survived the 50 mile ride home and were glad to get back into our warm home. I'm glad the furnace is still working!!

Today was a gray and wet day. The rains started shortly after 8:00 am and was steady for most of the day. I had to make a trip to Indianapolis for work but am still not getting very busy. I have been through times like this before and it usually ends with me getting a ton of assignments all at once so I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop.

We have been planning and preparing for spending the winter in the 5er. One of things we wanted to do was get a larger propane tank put in place and make arrangements to have a gas company fill it on a scheduled basis. This way we wouldn't have to refill our small tanks (the ones on board the 5er) so often. Rudee called every propane provider in the phone book today and came up empty. I guess the best business to have in a recession is propane sales and service. None of the companies in or around Crawfordsville would rent us a tank and sell us the propane needed for this winter. The KOA does refill cylinders and I had pretty much surrendered to the fact I would be refilling one of our tanks every few days. We talked to Jamie in the office to see if she had any suggestions and she offered us the use of a 100lb tank that she has. We accepted her offer and really appreciate her helping us out. The tanks on the 5er are 30lbs and would probably only last 3-4 days each during the winter. I plan on purchasing the needed hardware so I can hook it into our system and we should be able to go for a couple of weeks (maybe more) between fills. Sweet!

Steve and Trish have invited us to go to the "Feast of the Hunters Moon" festival in Lafayette Indiana on Saturday. The rain is supposed to have ended by then (I hope) and we are looking forward to a fun, fall day. I'll keep you posted.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

back to work :-(

Well we didn't get our windfall BINGO winnings last night so it's back to work for us.

Rudee got off early yesterday because we had to take our youngest grand daughter, Olivia, to the doctor. She had been having some flu like symptoms off and on for the last several days. She would get sick one day and be fine the next then get sick again. She just couldn't stay well two days in a row.
Her Doctor's offices are next to the hospital in Lebanon and we got there just in time for the appointment, only bad thing is they had moved :-(. We rushed to their new office and they were nice enough to see her even though we were late. Olivia took the exam in stride and the verdict is she has picked up a stomach bug and it will only take some time and it will pass.

Amanda met us at in the parking lot on her way home from work and we transferred all the "stuff" and Olivia into her van. It never ceases to amaze me how much "stuff" you have to lug around to take care of one tiny human being. Seems like the smaller they are, the more stuff you need. Just look around the restaurant next time you are out eating. The young families come in with arms full of huge bags full of who knows what not to mention the little one who is usually strapped into some kind of seat/carrier that doubles as a high chair. I guess I don't remember doing all that but we must have. Glad we don't have to anymore :-).

We met Steve and Trish at the Lebanon Eagles Lodge for BINGO. We have standing reservations in the non-smoking tables. They put a card with our names on it in front of our seats even though we only go once a month or so. We bought our packets and got ready to start raking in the money! We played and played and lost and lost :-( I did get with in one number of winning $1,000.00 on the next to last game. You have to get a BINGO in 6 number or less. If that 6th number was N-37 I would have been one happy guy! It was not to be and someone BINGO'd on the 7th number for $100 and thus ended our last chance of the night for big riches :-)

We enjoyed Steve and Trish's company. Steve is retired from the Frankfort Police Department. We saw each other through some tough times and could count on each other to talk to when times got rough. Sometimes a cop can only talk to another cop and back when I was "on the road" as a Deputy we could always count on each other for support.

Rudee's company is providing her with a flu shot again this year. She will have to drive to the office to get it, but at least they are making all the arrangements. I will have to get mine either at the clinic or the drug store. I missed getting one a couple of years ago and had a bad case that put me down and out for about 3 days so I'm a firm believer in them. This new H1N1 shot is all you hear about on the news. I did see a TV commercial saying they are becoming available around here but only for people between the ages of 2-49. What's up with that??!!! I turn 50 and all of a sudden I'm old and dispensable??!!! Guess I'll just take my chances with the "pig flu".

Work has been slow, slow, slow. I have only gotten 2 new assignments yesterday and none so far today. It's times like these that I worry they will start downsizing again. I keep reminding myself that we are in a good position to weather the storm if I am laid off, just don't want to have to if you know what I mean.

Today has been a wet gloomy day. The farmers around have been out in their fields harvesting corn and beans. The heavy rains we had this morning will put a stop to that for a day or two at least.

The nights have been cooler and we have been running the furnace. Well at least we have since I fixed it, again !! We woke up last Wednesday morning and it was cold inside and the furnace would not come on. I checked and the gas tank was full. Crap, I just had the thing worked on at the factory. I took off the outside panel and there is a switch behind it that I shut off and then flipped back on. The furnace fired right up, hmmmmm. While standing there with a dumb look on my face trying to figure it all out my hand barely touched one of the wires going to the switch and it shut off. Aha!! Loose connection! One of the connectors put on by the manufacturer was not making a good connection so I replaced it with a better one. The furnace fired right up then. I shook the wires and it shut down again. There was another connector that was also loose so I replaced that one too. This seemed to fix it and the furnace has worked great ever since.

I have a few more "projects" in store before winter. I guess I better hurry and get them done because winter may get here sooner than we think! I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

New desk for me

Friday evening we met Steve and Trish at Stookey's Restaurant in Thorntown for dinner. We had a nice meal. We lingered there talking for awhile but the place was getting busy and people were waiting for a table. Trish suggested we go to their camper which is parked at a seasonal site at a campground just outside of town. We followed them there and just relaxed and talked until after dark.

Back at our home we watched a little TV and went to bed. I was up early Saturday morning and fixed Rudee a gourmet breakfast of frozen toaster waffles and then we hit the road. Our destination was RV Surplus in Elkhart Indiana. They were only open until noon and we had a 3 hour drive ahead of us so no sleeping in today.

We made good time and arrived shortly after 11:00am. We looked around a little and I picked up a new heavy duty extension cord for our portable heater and 3 vent covers. Once I get the covers installed we can open the vents even when it's raining or when we are running down the road for a little extra air circulation in the 5er. Rudee found the table and we looked it over for any defects. Finding none we started to carry it to the cash register. A nice young man, seeing us struggling trying to pick up the heavy table offered to help. I figured he would take one end and I would take the other but noooooooo! He politely asked this old Dude to step aside and proceeded to lift the table over his head and carry it thru the store. Well alrighty then! Kind of took me down a notch :-).
Hercules carried the table out to our truck and loaded it in the back. Rudee and I covered it with plastic since it had been raining on and off all morning and then we headed out. A couple of years ago we had found a nice little cafe in Elkhart named the "Cock-A-Doodle Cafe" and this is where we headed for lunch. They have the best burgers in the state in my opinion so Rudee and I shared a cheeseburger and fries.

We made it back home by 4pm and moved the table into the 5th wheel. No, I didn't lift it over my head, I may not be the smartest guy in the campground but I do know my limitations! The new table is pretty cool. The top flips up to reveal a deep storage area. Since I use the table as my work station I will be able to put all my work stuff away when I'm done for the day. There is enough room for my lap top, camera, phone and all the chargers and cables. No excuses for a messy desk now!

Amanda had asked Rudee to color her hair and I needed Ryan to do a little welding so we climbed up into the semi and drove to their house. I dropped Rudee off and drove to meet Ryan at his shop at work.
The welding I needed was to attach a nylon hitch plate onto the 5th wheel hitch. The connection between the trucks hitch and the 5th wheel pin and plate needs to have some type of lubrication. Commercial rigs use straight grease which is best but leaves a huge mess. Most 5th wheel owners opt for nylon disks that have a hole for the pin of the 5er and once you slide the pin through, it "grips" the edges by friction that holds it in place on the plate. I have used these in the past with some success but have had them "catch" and bind when hooking up. I opted for a more permanent mounted one that Niles told me about. We both purchased one a couple of years ago and attached them. I really liked the way they performed but I did mess mine up when I didn't raise the 5th wheel up high enough when I hooked on one time and tore mine loose. I found them for sale at a hitch shop in Elkhart last week and picked a new one up. You can see the old damaged one on the hitch in this picture.

Ryan was already at the shop when I arrived. I unpinned the head from the hitch and we carried it in. Ryan had the old one off and welded the new on on in no time. I did take the time to lube all the moving parts and inspect the inner workings of the hitch before putting it back on the truck.

I picked Rudee back up and we headed back to Crawfordsville. We stopped and picked up a pizza on the way home for supper.

Sunday morning Rudee was up and in the shower early. I reminded her it was not a work day and she reminded me it was Sunday and she wanted to go to church! I took a quick shower and we were out the door. The church we attended before we moved is located in Eagletown Indiana and was about 20 miles from our old house making it about 45 miles now. We did have time for breakfast at Flapjack's and still made it with 15 minutes to spare. I must confess it had been a while since we had been to church and it was nice seeing everyone and getting up to speed on all the happenings.

On the way to church we had gotten a call inviting us on a motorcycle ride. Ron and Sandi Mendenhall were getting a ride together to Newport Indiana and we were meeting them at 1:15 south of Crawfordsville. Rudee and I made it home, threw on our biking gear and headed out by 1:00. The gang was waiting on us and we fell into formation. Ron took the lead and we were off. Newport is the county seat of Vermillion County but has to be one of the smallest county seats in the state. Their claim to fame is a large hill on the main street. The story goes that Model A type cars used to have to back up the hill because it was so steep that if they went forward the gas would not flow from the tank to the engine. They have a "hill climb" event that draws old car enthusiasts from all over. The place was truly packed. This was our first time to attend this festival but we had heard about it before. They block off the streets and have vendors of every description for blocks around the town square. On main street they "stage" the cars for the hill climb and one at a time they run as fast as they can up the hill. Here is a photo of the hill and one of the cars building up speed to make the climb.

We had a lot of fun walking around and looking at the old cars as well as seeing them in action climbing the hill.

We sure were busy this past week. Hopefully we can slow down and relax some. We are planning on going to BINGO tomorrow night in Lebanon, maybe we'll win big :-) !! I'll keep you posted

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Flyin By

The week that is :-). We have both been busy little beavers this week. I can't believe September went by so fast. The trees are just starting to get their fall color. I guess snow and cold are not too far away ....... yuck.

Last night we carried the kitchen table out and loaded it into the truck. We drove it to Plainfield so we could try and sell it in the garage sale Rudee's Mom and Sister are having this week. They have a lot of stuff in their garage on display and should have a successful sale.

After dropping off the table we drove to Brownsburg and met the gang at Tequila Sunrise Restaurant. We had a large crowd and enjoyed the meal and the company.

Tomorrow is Grandparents day at Avalynn and Nicholas' school. Rudee has taken the afternoon off and it looks like my schedule may work out so I can attend as well. The grandkids get a real kick out of it and truth be told, so do we :-). The worst part is hanging around with all those "old" people. I can't believe how all the people we live around and have known for years have gotten so old while Rudee and I have not a changed a bit :-). I'm kidding of course, but I sure don't "feel" like a grandpa. I guess that's a good thing. Here is a sign I saw at the Montana Rally.

Rudee and I took walk through the fairgrounds one morning and found this guy peeking out to say Hi.

We are still planning to make a trip back up to RV Surplus in Elkhart on Saturday. They are only open until noon so we'll need to get an early start. Maybe I can get a train to go through the campground :-). I'll keep you posted.