Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The last 10 days.....

March 20 & 21, 2010:

Since my last blog post about our trip to the John Blance Memorial Soccer Complex in Temecula, CA I returned there again last weekend for another 2 day tournment. Elaine was going to have our grand daugther, Charlise, over the weekend as our daughter was attending the wedding of a close friend, so she bade me farewell Saturday morning as I headed south for Temecual once again.

Since my first match was not until 1pm I decided to leave Saturday morning instead of Friday night. To be sure I was able to secure a good spot for the two days I left around 6:30am, arriving in Temecula around 7:30am. I am really glad I arrived early because by 8:30am the RV parking area was crowded. I took my time setting up, visiting with one of my "neighbors" for a while, before eating some breakfast, and then laying down for a nap. I had barely dropped off when I got a call on my cell phone asking if I could fill in for a missing referee on one of the fields. Originally my schedule for Saturday was for 4 matches starting at 1pm. It was now a little after 9am. I barely had exited my coach with my soccer bag when the referee co-ordinator drove arrived in a golf cart and wisked me 4 fields over. As I stepped from the cart I heard him say, "you'll be an assistant referee on this match, and the center referee on the next match..."....before I could turn and reply he was heading off to solve another problem....groan......I'm over 60 now, and even though there was a time (maybe 12 years ago) when doing six matches in one day would not even phase me, it does now, but what could I do....they need help, and I'm available.

After finishing the 2nd match I had 1 1/2 hours until my 4 game stretch started at 1pm, so I trudged back to the coach, got a bite to eat, drank some gatorade, and then layed down for an hour. The four game set starting at 1pm included two center referee assignments (Boys U-19) and two assistant referee assignments (Girls U-17). I finished shortly after 7pm as the sun was setting over the Cleveland National Forest to the west. Thankfully, I did not have an hour drive home, but just a 5 minute walk......I hopped in the shower to wash the sweat and grime off before eating dinner and watching an NCAA March Madness game. I was in bed by 9pm, and slept like the dead until 4am. I finally got up around 6am (my first of FIVE matches was at 8am). I fired up the generator, turned on the coffee maker and "made" a bowl of Grapenuts with a banana sliced on top. I love that first cup of coffee in the morning!

Sunday, I had been given 5 assignments (one less than the 6 I had the day before), but this day I still had 3 center assignments, inlcuding a Girls U-19 (under 19 years of age) final at 3:05pm. I had a 1 hour break between my 4th match and the U-19 final, which I really needed. Being able to take that break in the comfort of the coach is really appreciated.

The Girls U-19 final went well, and I headed back to the coach to put everything away, take a shower, and then drive home. I arrived home around 6:15pm grateful Ididn't have to make the drive to Temecula twice that weekend, saving 96 miles of extra driving, but totally beat.

March 23, 2010:

I had planned to return the coach to the storage facility on Monday, but I decided I needed to do some maintenance. I had noticed a few "popped" rivets that needed replacing, and the basement storage compartment just to the rear of the left front wheel had been getting water in it when it rains, so I need to do some caulking to seal that up again. Additionally, when I had been under the coach a few weeks ago to fix the generator starting issue, I had noticed how completely filthy that area was.....probably had 15 years of grime, grease, oil, dirt built up. I pulled the generator out (it is mounted on a slide with 6 rollers on the bottom for servicing), sprayed down the engine, and the entire compartment with Simple Green. After letting it "stew" for a few minutes I hauled out the pressure washer and blasted all the gunk off. Needless to say I was completely filthy after that experience, mostly because I had to roll under the coach again on the "crawler" to reattach the exaust pipe for the generator. Obviously, that is where all the gunk ended up. I'll have to scoop up what is left off the street after I take the coach back to storage this afternoon.

So, you are now caught up on the last 10 days of our Newell Adventure. Thank you, as always, for reading!

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