Monday, April 29, 2013

Washington D.C. - Day # 11 - Homebodies

We had intended to head back into the National Mall to spend some more time at National Museum of American History, but after two days of site seeing in a row, and an electrical issue that popped up Saturday night/Sunday morning we decided to stay home for the day.  

A few months ago I wrote about installing  20 some odd feet of LED strip lighting between the curtain valance and the curtains in the living area of the coach (see my ACCENTS post from January 15th).  I used a 12 volt dimmer box to control the lights, and it worked great until recently.  Recently I would wake up in the middle of the night to what looked like lightning flashes (thunder and lightning) in the front of the coach.  I knew it wasn't raining, and there was no thunder.....what is was was the strip lighting kind of it would keep going off and on every 1/10th of a second.  The first few times it happened I would just keep turning the lights on and off until they stayed off.  Saturday night/Sunday morning that did not work anymore.  I had to disconnect a wire to keep them off, because I can't let those lights keep strobing all night/day as that will drain the batteries.

I originally bought 4 of those 12 volt dimmers through Amazon, and had only used the one so far, so Sunday morning I went into the trailer to find the other three and use one of them to replace the, apparently, defective one.  By the time I finished with that project it was Noon time, so instead of doing any site seeing TLE went shopping....we'll be leaving for Indianapolis in a few days and need to restock the pantry and fridge.....and I decided to try and install the new "ignitor" I got for the BBQ a few weeks ago, but never installed......well, one evening I tried to install it before I BBQ'd some fish, but after 10 minutes it was obvious that I  would have to do some major disassembly to get the old one out and the new one in, so I deferred the repair to another day......"another day" came Sunday.  I took the BBQ apart....well mostly apart....trying to install the new one, but it is a little different than the old one, and I had to do some modification to it to make it fit.  After a couple of hours I came to the conclusion that I was trying to make a square peg fit in a round hole, and put the BBQ back together.  I can still light the BBQ, I just need to use a lighter to do it....a small inconvenience.  I think the best thing to do is call Sea-B-Que and see if I can get one from them that will fit properly.....guess I should have done that in the first place.

About 3 TLE returned from her shopping spree, and began to put the spoils away.  She purchased some salmon for dinner, and her plan was that I should BBQ it.....not a problem until it started raining.  We discussed a few alternatives, but finally opted to just deploy the patio awning so I could use the BBQ ....that worked out just fine.

TLE made a carrot and red cabbage salad with a light mustard dressing, some white rice and squash to compliment the salmon.  In a restaurant this plate would come to around $24 (conservatively) per person...throw in another $4+ for each glass of wine and 15% tip and you're at $33 per person......our cost...$7/person.....the cook did get a nice gratuity.

After dinner we spent time reading (okay, I took about a 2 hour nap in the recliner, but I did read for a while), and then at 11 we turned on the TV to watch "The Amazing Race"'s down to the final 4 teams after last night's episode, and the two hour finale will be next Sunday.

As you will know if you have been following my blog for very long I am a Louis L'Amour fan.  He wrote a couple hundred westerns, and I have read almost all of them.  In the past few months I have begun to read other Western authors such as Max Brand, and Zane Grey.  I just finished a long Zane Grey book entitled "The U.P. Trail" a 400 page novel about the building of the Union Pacific RR from Omaha to California....if you buy the hard cover copy of this book on Amazon it costs almost $26....I got it free on my Kindle.

It continued raining all night....a very light, but steady rain, and it is still raining as I write this morning (9:45 am)......I cannot reiterate often enough how nice it is to wake up during the night and hear the rain on the aluminum roof.  I woke up this morning around 6 and just lay in bed listening to the rain for an hour, or so......just makes me feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

It is really a good thing we got the Honda back Saturday because it was in continuous use most of the day Sunday as there was heavy cloud cover....I was able to get the batteries back to 92% by the time I turned off the Honda at 7 pm.  The quiet hours here in Greenbelt Park are from 10 pm to 7 am, so we used the inverter to watch TV at 11 pm.

Thanks for stopping by!


  1. Hey Clarke any insight into your bus systems like Sean has on Odyssey, like your battery bank and why a propane 7.5 and not a oil burner? I know cost wise to go that way (that's why I have a 5.5 gas Onan in my diesel trk bed) and was that propane OEM for the bus...

  2. Hi Capt. Joey! We carry 2 8D flooded cell house batteries which give us over 500 amp hours of which can use a little over 250 amp hours. The Kohler propane genset was the choice of the original owner back in 1982, so I do not know his motivation for that choice. Not interested in expending the $ to change over, which is why we carry the small Honda. Unless we need more power for the air conditioners, we usually use the small Honda to power the basic systems of the coach and it works out well, and does not cost much to operate.

  3. clarke you take a lot of naps and i look forward to when my retired side has the time to take naps. but i did nap for a while in the dental chair this afternoon. does that count?



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