The rest of the rolling stock
Saturday, March 31, 2012
The rest of the rolling stock
Friday, March 30, 2012
Thursday, March 29, 2012
We departed DeFuniak Springs around 8:15am....we're gettin' real good at getting up and on the road! Each hour we try to stop at a rest stop, or picnic area, get out of the coach and walk around. Sometimes we meet interesting people. At one stop we met a long trucker named Joe who came over and asked questions about our rig, and told us a lot about his business that I never knew. Joe is from Indiana and spends 3 out of 4 weeks on the road. After every 70 hours of driving he must sit it one place for 34 hours to get his time back and drive again. It is monitored electronically, so there no way to "fudge". Another lady we met, and I don't recall her name, was from California originally. She and her husband had moved to Florida for work.....something in aerospace I believe, and it didn't work out so she was (with a Master's degree) working at the restop to supplement their income. Everyone has a story, and there are a lot of those stories that are part of our memories of this trip now.
At our second rest stop of the day just west of Tallahassee, where we spent about an hour discussing our alternate destination for the day, we decided to push on to Perry. We were glad we did, and really enjoyed our overnight stay at the State Park.
Of course, once we hit Tallahassee we entered the Eastern time zone, where we will be for the next couple of months. So, when we arrived in Perry it was 1:30pm, not 12:30pm. As a result our departure was a little later on Wednesday....about 9:30am.....we only had 95 miles to go to Cedar Key, and we also needed to stop in Chiefland to stock up on food and drink for the next week, or so. The Walmart was on the east side of Florida SR 27, and the Win Dixie on the west side.....very handy as we needed to shop in both stores.
After talking with Chris and Cherie for a while and exchanging tours of our Nomad homes, Elaine and I suited up and took a bike ride into Cedar Key (1.5 miles away). We rode about 8 miles in total and saw the whole town, including the airport. A very nice, LAID BACK place. I can see why people come here and never leave.
Monday, March 26, 2012
Today, Monday, we got underway around 8am....another early start. Our destination for today was De Funiak Springs, FL....another tough 119 miles eastward on smooth, straight highway.....we're now in the Panhandle where it is a little hilly, but we knocked out the distance by 11am. We are at yet another Walmart Supercenter that allows overnight parking. We quickly got our bearings, got the bikes out and went for another bike ride over to De Funiak Lake, the spring fed lake.....it is almost perfectly round....probably about a mile in circumference. A lot of very old Victorian homes surround the lake. On our way off the freeway Elaine spied a winery, so after riding around town for an hour, or so we headed to the winery to taste some local wines. Chataqua Winery is a quaint local winery. We ended up buying two bottles.....once, Sugar Sands White, is really yummy!
Saturday, March 24, 2012
Friday morning we got up with one goal in mind....head north to Baton Rouge, but first we had to dump our black tank, and receive mail from my son. Our host advised that the mail delivery was usually between 1pm and 2pm, so around 12:30pm we headed into town in the coach (without the trailer) to the Civic Center where there was rumored to be a dump site, and sure enough, they have an RV dump site at the Civic Center....who would have thought? We got the black tank dumped for $5.00, and then headed back to our host's home to discover the mail had been delivered, and our mail was there!!! I love it when a plan comes together!
We hooked up the trailer, loaded the 'Bird, and were on the road by 2:30pm. Our goal for the day was a Walmart Supercenter just south of Baton Rouge in Prarieville. We arrived there around 4:30pm, and what a great choice this was....giant parking lot, good lighting, much lower humidity, and a good price on diesel at Murphy USA in the same parking lot....$3.85/gallon.
We found a nice level spot, parked, and headed over to a Rocco's Po' Boy New Orleans style restaurant....I had Shrimp Alfredo.....hmmmm....I can still tate the garlic....yum!
The humidity was right in the low 40's...the lowest we've had since West Texas....lol! Slept great, and enjoyed having the windows open all night!
In the morning (Saturday, today) we unloaded the T'Bird and drove across the parking lot to the gas station and put $500 in the Newell tank, and 15 gallons in the 'Bird. Once we were back in our spot, we got dressed and drove the 'Bird into Baton Rouge, but before we got too far we stopped at Rue Beignet and had some coffee and the aforementioned Beignets.....WOW, really great with powdered sugar on them!
Our next stop was JD Duz laundromat.....yes, they do still exist. We brought a boatload of quarters with us, but, of course, this is not how this laundromat operates....you have put money in their machine, which issues a magnetic card that you insert in their washers and dryers.....took a couple of minutes to figure out how that worked, but eventually we got the clothes, and sheets washed and dried, and then headed off for our next stop...LSU Stadium, homeo of the NCAA football Tigers.
After our tour of the Capitol we headed back to the coach, loaded the T'Bird, and then jumped on I-12 heading east to Slidell, LA.....just shy of the Mississippi border. This is one sweet stretch of Interstate....smooth, flat, and straight. I set the cruise control on 60 and just steered for 2 hours. We are now parked at another Walmart Supercenter in Slidell, right across from a Cracker Barrel, and a Lowe's (I'm using their free WiFi....it is lightning fast!).
This morning when I got up the house batteries were down to 85%....the solar panels brought them back up to 96% by the end of the day.
That's our day.....thanks for stopping by!
Friday, March 23, 2012
Wednesday, March 21, 2012
Tuesday we had planned to drive up to Baton Rouge, BUT all the weather reports indicated high winds, and rain. Didn't sound like a great day to go site seeing, so we decided to stay home and read. I had been trying to finish "For Whom the Bell Tolls" by Hemingway, but had been distracted each day recently by other things. So I opened the book on my Kindle in dove in. According to the Kindle I had read 75% of the book....I have no idea how many pages that is, nor how many I had left, but it took me the better part of the morning to finish that 25%. For those of you who have read this novel you know that the first 75% is repleat with detailed, in depth dialogue and character development. By the time you get to the last quarter of the book you know each of the characters in amazing detail. There are really no questions left in your mind about the characters, or what motivates them. The only thing you are left with is who is for whom is the bell going to toll. By the time I finished the book it had become clear that the rain was not coming yet, but it was very, very windy. For those of you who have not read this book I will not spoil the ending for you.
I went back to my home page in the Kindle and found a Louis L'Amour book I had not yet read, and so dove into Borden Chantry. What I love about his westerns is that you can read them in an afternoon, and you know the main character will prevail in whatever struggle he, or she is engaged.....good win out. I have yet to read one of L'Amour's books that I did not enjoy, and have read many more than once.
By the time I finsished my second book of the day it was after 5pm, and the day was just about done....and still no rain.....but lots of wind.
It wasn't until about 8am this morning (Wednesday) that the rain came, and it came with a vengance. Take a look a the video I have uploaded . Not apparent in the video is the lightning and thunder that accompanied the torrential down pour.I don't know if I have mentioned before, but Elaine and I applied to Amazon to work in one of their fulfillment centers this fall/winter from mid October to December 23rd. We can make good money during that time...enough to pay for a couple of years of diesel, and travels. At any rate we had submitted our applications back in January. We had gotten an e-mail a week ago, or so which indicated we would be called soon for our phone interviews, and guess what? That day was today at 8:30am.....we had just poured ourselves a cup of coffee when Kelly (a guy) called from Amazon to do the phone interview. They want to be sure you are aware of the physical nature of the work, and are up to it, so they ask you a lot of detailed questions about your physical abilities, and explain in graphic detail the responsiblities of each position. At the end of the interview we were advised we were accepted to work in their Campbellsville, KY center. The hourly pay is decent, and if you complete your contract you get a $1.00 per hour worked bonus per person. In addition, they pay for your RV spot, and utilities. The only thing we are responsible for is our propane.
There are 3 fulfillment centers Amazon recruits workcampers to: Fernley, NV, Coffeyville, Kansas, and Campbellsville, KY....we chose Kentucky as we felt the weather would be the most moderate compared to the other two locations. So, we are set and have about 6.5 months of freedom before we begin our stint at Amazon.
Our plan after Amazon is to head down to Florida for the winter.
Thanks for stopping by!!
Tuesday, March 20, 2012
St. CharlesAfter the museum we decided to walk to to Bourbon Street and the French Quarter. It was probably about 8, or 9 blocks. We stopped off at Lafayette Square to take a picture.
At last we came to Bourbon Street, which begins at Canal Street one block over from St. Charles. My first impression of Bourbon Street was the on again, off again smell of what smelled like the gray water I dump out of my holding tank once a week. The second thing I noticed was the large number of strip clubs....in fact the first thing you see when you enter Bourbon St. is the Hustler Club. We walked the entire length of Bourbon Street where you could still see some party beads left over from Mardi Gras hanging from the balconies. At every restaurant entrance stood people holding the menu for that restaurant in front of them, and asking you to come in.
There were various clubs offering the different genres of music, and a lot of bars.....most full at mid day on a Monday.
Just after we reached the end of Bourbon street and walked over to Royal to walk back to Canal Street we found this nice little coffee shop were I got a Mocca Frappuccino and Elaine a coffee of the day. Nice break after a long walk.
Our walk back up Royal (turns into St. Charles) was actually more enjoyable.....there were a lot of street musicians, antique shops, and the Louisiana State Supreme Court. Very pretty building!
We spent about 6 hours in the Big Easy, and really just scratched the surface of what there is to see. When we got back to Canal Street we caught the St. Charles Trolley back to our parking lot. It was a very nice day, and we will return.
We got home about 5:30pm, and I immediately checked to see if the paint was dry in the engine bays that I had applied that morning. It was, so Elaine helped me cut the rubber mats to fit, and we installed them. This finished project exceeded my expectations!
The dry paint
After new rubber mats!!
Thanks for stopping by!