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

Friday, April 30, 2021

The long trek West

 We left our "moochdocking" spot in our daughters driveway last Wednesday. We had to delay a day because of a big storm making it's way across the middle of the country dropping snow and temperatures. Indiana got about 3" of wet snow on Tuesday night and I had to scrape off the roofs of the slides so they would close. I thought maybe Rudee would feel sorry for me and let me get slide toppers installed but since we have 5 slides she figures it's better to just spend that money to stay away from the snow! LOL The roads were clear and dry but it never did get above 40 degrees the whole day. Brrrrrr.

Our trip West went well stopping the first night in Iowa and the 2nd night in Sioux Falls, SD. We arrived back in Custer on Friday afternoon and spent a week at French Creek RV Park downtown. Each leg of the trip was about 380 miles and that distance worked well for us. 

Today we packed up again and moved to our summer "digs" in the shadow of Crazy Horse Memorial. Our 4 mile trip went well and we were not even "road weary" when we arrived 10 minutes later. LOL

We are the first work campers here but more will be arriving in the next days and weeks. We start on Wednesday with orientation and then back to the old grind on Friday.  I will be driving one of the tour buses that gives guests a closer look at the Mountain. Rudee will be doing shipping and receiving in the gift shop. Both of us are working 4 days per week and are looking forward to a little more relaxed atmosphere that part time work camping provides ........we hope! LOL I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, April 20, 2021

The Great Mattress Adventure!

 As most of you know the mattress they put into RV's are mostly junk. Getting one to last more than one season is a huge accomplishment. One of the first things we added to our used Montana when we purchased it was a mattress pad. While the 3" cooling foam pad was an improvement I was just never a big fan of it. The issue was the pad was a residential King size and our bed was an RV King size with tapered ends. The pad was just too big and did not want to stay put! We decided to go mattress shopping last week and Rudee researched places to go while I measured what size would work for us. We both wanted to stick with a King but there was some limitations on sizes to fit our bed. We have a front living room model of fifth wheel which we both love. The bedroom is in the rear and has opposing slide outs, one slide houses the bed and the other is the closet and dresser drawers. When you slide them in for travel the foot of the bed pushes into the dresser drawers which are spring loaded. With everything closed up the foot of the bed is 3"-4" into the drawer "enclosure". Kind of odd but it works well and gives you a ton of room when you are all set up. So with my measurements in hand we headed out to "bed shop". The maximum thickness we could have was 11" but, after researching RV forums the night before, I was confident a "standard King" would work as long as it was not too thick. Oh ya, it had to be ready for us to pick up no later than next Monday. Rudee had address' of four different mattress stores in the area so off we went. Two of the places were a total bust with long delivery times. The third promised he could get us a suitable mattress by Monday afternoon as long as he could "catch the delivery truck" before it left the warehouse 300 miles away. The last place had the mattress in stock locally, in fact they had 6 of them at their warehouse and we could run over there the next day and pick it up. We went ahead with the purchase, paid the bill and reserved a pick up time. Whew, glad that was over! I did find out after some 42 plus years of marriage that we can't totally agree on the firmness (or lack thereof) of a mattress. I like medium to firm, Rudee likes .......well I'm still not sure. LOL

The next morning as we were preparing to leave I started having some apprehensions. Rudee said "let's just double check it is going to work". We measured the length and no problem 80" is doable. The thickness of 11" was right on the money. Even the width of 76" would fit just fine. Then it hit me (picture my palm slapping my forehead LOL)! Remember how I described the foot of the bed sliding into the dresser drawer enclosure? I had not measured that opening .....Oh crap, it's only 73" and that is the reason our old mattress has tapered ends! Duh! Now what do we do? Well the first this is to call the mattress store, cancel the purchase and get our money returned. They were very nice about it and processed our full refund in just a few minutes. Next thing I did was some more research and found that Camping World in Indianapolis sold a "RV King size Cooling Gel Memory Foam" mattress that is narrow enough to work for us. The reviews online were overwhelmingly positive so we called and they had some in stock. So we pulled the trigger and so far so good. I thought our biggest challenge would be getting it in the fifth wheel. Oh no, these things come "vacuum sucked" rolled up in a box. All you have to do is unbox it, put it on the platform and enjoy.......or so the instructions said! We got the old one out and yes, the new one went in quite easily. Once we got it out of the box we started cutting away the plastic around the mattress and then "POOF" me, Rudee and the mattress all unrolled onto the bed platform! Oh well it's in and just needs to finish "inflating" LOL. We have slept on it for two nights so far and really like it so I think Goldilocks (aka Rudee) has found a bed that's "just right". LOL

The day after we installed our mattress we drove the truck to Pennsylvania to spend the weekend at our sons home north of Pittsburgh. We had a great time and the weekend flew by. Before we knew it Monday morning was here and we had to say goodbye to them and head back. :-(

 See you in October sweetheart. 

Our plan was to hook on and leave Tuesday morning to start our trek back to South Dakota. With the nasty weather predicted between us and Iowa (rain, freezing rain, snow and wind) we decided to sit tight for another day. The weather looks a little better starting tomorrow and should give us a window for our travels. We don't start work until May 5th so we can take our time if needed. I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, April 15, 2021

Back on the road!

 As the title suggests we left Custer, South Dakota on December 2nd aiming for warmer weather. We made a two day trip to Indiana which is way more miles per day than we would have liked but the roads were dry and no since stopping just to freeze or patooties off. We arrived safe and sound to our "mooch docking" spot in our daughters driveway. We stayed through Christmas and then pointed the rig Southbound!

Winter was spent at the Escapees park in Summerdale Alabama where we ate too much seafood and drank too many Bushwhackers! Where have those things been hiding all my life??? LOL

So that puts us to our spring adventures and adventurous it has been! We hooked up and left Summerdale on Easter Sunday where we headed back towards some time with family for a couple of weeks. Our first day on the road was a little busy with the last of the Spring Breakers heading North to go back to school and work. We drove just under 400 miles stopping at Texas T RV Park just north of the Alabama/Tennessee line off I-65. We like this little park and have stayed here a few times. They have full hook up pull through spots with cable TV and a nice babbling brook flowing on its border. We decided to stay for three nights and do a little sightseeing. 

I mentioned the brook and this was the location of our first adventure. I took Rudee out for a nice steak dinner at a nearby restaurant and when we returned I took her by the hand and suggested a romantic walk along the creek. We were all alone, or so we thought. As we stopped and looked at the minnows swimming in the creek I looked up and a guy was riding a 4 wheeler our way.........in the creek! I could see it was about 5 foot deep between us and him but he kept coming, getting closer and closer until the front end of the 4 wheeler disappeared. Well that didn't stop this guy! He just kept coming and then the back end of the 4 wheeler disappeared!  That's about the time the 4 wheeler decided to float and then flipped upside down with this turkey still sitting in the seat! I headed towards him thinking I was going to have to jump in and save him from himself and Rudee was chasing me trying to get my phone and wallet before I had to jump in. Right as we got to where the 4 tires of the 4 wheeler were visible  he came popping out from under it and stood up spitting and sputtering. He didn't even loose his hat! He looked up at us, smiled a toothless smile and said "Happy Easter! Today's my Birfday". Well needless to say it took everything we had not to laugh out loud at this wet, toothless, drunk "Birfday" Boy standing up to his waist in a creek next to his bobbing 4 wheeler! We decided this would be a good time to notify the campground staff and share the experience with them. LOL

The male work camper and the owner came out and we left. So much for our romantic walk! LOL The Good news is Billy Bob got his 4 wheeler right side up and after several tries, got it to stay running. He was last seen riding it back westbound in the creek. LOL So you want to be a work camper? You just never know what you'll be called upon to do but the stories are well worth the effort! LOL

We are now parked in Indiana and I am going to make a concentrated effort to revive our blog. I already have more adventures to share, life has not been boring since retiring!  Our plans are to head to South Dakota where we will work camper at Crazy Horse for the summer. I will be a tour bus driver and Rudee with work in the shipping and receiving department of the gift shop. We leave here next week, I'll keep you posted!