Daily Archives: February 6, 2021

Family Get-Together . . .

Jan and I headed up to the Katy area about 2:45pm to meet up with Brandi, Lowell, and Landon at the Babin’s Seafood at Mason Rd.

It was smooth trip with no traffic to speak of. But it does tell you something when you can be doing 75-80 mph in the middle of 5 lanes, and people are passing you on both sides. And giving you dirty looks because you’re driving too slow.

It was our first time at a Babin’s and it turned out to be really good. We’ve got one over at the Kemah Boardwalk, not too far from us, so we may have to go again.

We started off with an order of their Shrimp Kisses, shrimp stuffed with jack chees and jalapenos, then wrapped in bacon and covered in a BBQ Chipotle Glaze. But strangely enough they didn’t last long enough for me to get a photo.

Then it was on to salads for everyone, well, except Landon. Brandi and Lowell with House Salads, Jan with the Greek Salad, and I was happy to see they had my favorite Wedge Salad.

Babin's Wedge Salad

For  the entrée, everyone got something different. Brandi got the Seafood Mixed Grill, pretty much a Fried Seafood Platter, while Jan got the Crab Cakes.

Babin's Crab Cakes

Lowell got the Fried Shrimp Platter, while Landon, every the anarchist, got Chicken Alfredo.

But more of the traditionalist, I got a big bowl of their Shrimp Gumbo.

Babin's Shrimp Gumbo

Being it was an early celebration of Lowell’s birthday, I ordered a Bourbon St. Bread Pudding, thinking we could all have a few bites.

Wrong!

Babin's Bread Pudding

This thing was enormous. The photo doesn’t do it justice.

The bread pudding was made with raisins and pecans, covered in Bananas Foster sauce (complete with bananas) and Vanilla RUM sauce (note the emphasis on the RUM. You could smell it when the waiter set it down) and then capped off with about 5” of meringue.

And it was delicious. And so big, that after everyone had their fill, and then some, I still had over half of it left to bring home.

I think next time when we go, I’m just getting the Bread Pudding and coffee. And I bet I still have some to take home.

Coming home was just as smooth as the trip up, getting us back to the rig a little before 7pm. A very nice day.

Wrapping up, I came across this colorized video of the traffic on Market St in San Francisco in 1906. And watching it, one thing became obvious very quickly.

Drivers and pedestrians were just as bad back then as they are now. The pedestrians just walk right in front of buggies and autos. The autos, and the buggies, cut each other off, and dart across three lanes of traffic to turn or park.

Human nature never changes.


Thought For The Day:

Immature: The word used by boing people to describe fun people.
 
 
 


This was the very first Our RV Adventures I did. Unfortunately I was so involved in getting us on the road our first year, I never thought about blogging.


February 6, 2009

Welcome to Our RV Adventures!

Welcome to Jan and Greg White’s RV life.   Year Two.

We’re getting ready to start our 2nd year living and traveling fulltime in our 40 foot America Eagle motorcoach.

Our coach (Jan named her ‘Beauty’) is a Class A diesel pusher with a 350hp Cummins ISC engine.  FYI – Class A means it is what Jan calls a ‘bus’.

'Beauty' at her finest!

‘Beauty’ at her finest!

Class C’s are the ones you see built on truck chassis’ that have a bed hanging out over the cab roof.

This Class C is the one we took on our first RV trip in March 2007.

This Class C is the one we took on our first RV trip in March 2007.

Class B’s are smaller and are built on large van chassis’. And no, I have no idea why Class A is the biggest, Class B is the smallest, and Class C is the middle size.

A Class B RV

A Class B RV

And diesel ‘pusher’ means it has the engine in the rear.

At home on Dickinson Bayou.

At home on Dickinson Bayou.

We’ve been parked here at Galveston Bay RV Park since the 1st of Dec.

The view out our front window.

The view out our front window.

Jan loves all the wild life in the area


Thought For The Day:

Two wrongs don’t make a right, but they do make it interesting.

 

 


February 6, 2012

TopWater And Torpedoes . . .

Today was another day of trying to wrap things up before we leave here in about 10 days.

Leaving the rig about 11:30, my first stop was at our doctor’s office to pick up the printouts of our lab results that were supposed to be ready.

But they weren’t. Or, at least, all of them weren’t. Only some.

My next stop was our optometrist to make appointments for Jan and I. I was able to get mine for 3:00 pm this afternoon, and Jan’s is set for 10:15 am Thursday morning.

Since I had a couple of hours to kill I decided to work on some things at a nearby client’s, before I ended up back at the doctor’s.

Thirty minutes later I at the Optical Department at a nearby Sam’s Club ordering my new glasses. Talk about a price difference! The exact same frames that are $94 at Wal-Mart are only $47 at Sam’s.

After stops at Home Depot and Lowe’s for some parts for a project I’m working on, and then dropping off our winter comforter at the cleaner’s, I finally headed home.

We have two comforters, a winter one and a summer one. The winter one is heavier, and we use it while we’re back in Texas. Then we have it cleaned and sealed in plastic, and then right before we leave, we drop it off at our storeroom and pick up our summer one that we had cleaned and stored right after we got here. It’s a vicious circle.

Getting back to the rig, we decided to have dinner once again at TopWater Grill located at April Fool Point on Galveston Bay.

TopWater Grill 1

We’ve been eating since it opened about 12 years ago, and have watched it grow from a small shack with about 5 tables and a bar, to a large, beautiful restaurant on the bay.

TopWater Grill

Unfortunately the place was almost completely destroyed by Hurricane Ike in 2008 and it was a while before they rebuilt it. In fact this is is the first time we’ve been back since then.

But at least the scenic views haven’t changed.

TopWater Grill 2

 

And neither has the delicious food. These are Torpedoes, large breaded jalapenos stuffed with crabmeat and cheese. Really, really good.

So good that we ate two of them before I remembered to take a picture.

TopWater Grill Torpedoes

 

And this is my Fried Seafood Platter, with scallops, fish filets, fried shrimp, crabmeat-stuffed shrimp, and a stuffed crab, along with shrimp coleslaw and jalapeno hushpuppies.

TopWater Grill Seafood Platter

 

And did I mentioned the great views?

TopWater Grill 3

 

And of course, a really beautiful sunset when we got back to the park.

Galv Bay Sunset


Thought for the Day:

“Take the high ground boy, or they’ll kick hell out of you in the valleys.”

 

 


February 6, 2013

Cold, Dreary, and Wet . . .

It was pouring down rain when I woke up this morning and never really let up all day.

After morning coffee, HEB Cinnamon Hazelnut, if you’re interested, I took down the living room valance/shade combo so I could repair it. Unfortunately this one actually has a broken cord up inside the shade, so it will have to be replaced. I going to redo all four cords to be sure I don’t have any other worn spots.

To get this valance down I had to lower the sofa down into the bed position so I could get to the screws at the bottom. Actually had trouble remembering how to do it, since the last time we used it was in 2008 when we flew our daughter Brandi and granddaughter Piper up to Fairbanks, AK to spend a week with us.

But by the time I finally figured it out and got the valance down and the shade disassembled, it was time to head out about 12:30 to meet a friend of Jan’s. Then it was back over to Kemah so Jan could get her hair done.

While she was hair-involved, I made a pass through the nearby Home Depot for a few things until Jan was ready to go.

After that it was home for the night and the last of our homemade Chicken Tortilla Soup.

I talked to Brock’s Car Care later in the afternoon and found they were waiting on a new condenser fan, and my truck wouldn’t be ready until tomorrow, so I’ll have to drive that big Dodge Ram truck for another day.

Oh, darn.


Thought for the Day:

“After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it.” – William S. Burroughs

 

 


February 6, 2014

Chili and Stepstools . . .

I spent most of this cold morning working inside the rig, getting all the chairs bolted down and wired up after removing them for the floor install. The hardest thing is getting the cable hooked up that controls the rotation lock. There’s not a lot of room underneath the chair to get your hands in there.

About 1 PM I headed into Clear Lake to pick up our prescriptions at Sam’s Club. Along the way I stopped off at the Bay Area Pet Adoption Center right down the road. Jan had gone thru some stuff and had several bags of old sheets, and a bag of rugs that we no longer need since the new floor is done. They use these as bedding for the animals and welcome any they can get.

After picking up our prescriptions and a few other things, I headed back home and spent the rest of the afternoon working on client webstuff. About 4 we finished off the last of the chili that Jan made a couple of days ago. Chili’s one of those foods that seems to get better as it ages a couple of days. Delicious!

After dinner I took a look at one of those little problems that always nag you, but never enough to get you to actually do something about them.

The pocket door between the bedroom and the bathroom often starts sticking and won’t close all the way when we’re using the levelers or parked in an area with a lot of humidity. In our present case, we’ve got both conditions. So this time I did something about it.

Getting up on a stepstool with a flashlight, I discovered that, unlike some of these doors I’ve seen, these actually have adjusters that let you raise or lower the door in the frame. There is a plastic lock that keeps the adjuster from moving that I moved out of the way, and then used a small wrench to raise the door enough to allow it to move freely. Finally fixed!

Tomorrow will probably be mostly client stuff, but tomorrow night we’re going to the Alvin Opry again, probably our last time for this year.


Thought for the Day:

“If you think you can do a thing or think you can’t do a thing, you’re right.” ~ Henry Ford

 


February 6, 2015

Piddling . . .

After Jan and I had very early (too early) coffee and kolaches, our son Chris showed up for my (his) latest project.

He was going to repair the damaged fiberglass on the bottom corners of our rig’s front cap.

The first one is a mystery. In 2008 during our first month on the road, we were parked in the parking lot in front of Al’s RV Supply in the Fortuna Foothills in Yuma, AZ. We were in the store for about an hour, and then after eating lunch, we came out to find this on the right side just in front of the door.

Rig Repari B4 3

Rig Repari B4 4

No one was near us when we parked, and no one was nearby when we came out.

This second one, on the driver’s side, was my fault, but I’ve forgotten what happened. It didn’t look this bad until Chris pulled the loose piece off so he could repair it.

Rig Repari B4 1

Rig Repari B4 2

So after Chris checked out the damage, we drove up to the Home Depot in Kemah to pick up supplies, including the fiberglass stuff.

Getting back to the rig, Chris started out by using his multifunction tool to cut away the ragged edges of the break underneath the light.

Rig Repair Front Day 1 1

Then he pop-riveted a temporary plate on the front of the break to hold it together while he pop-riveted a hidden, permanent one on the back.

Rig Repair Front Day 1 2

This got him here.

Rig Repair Front Day 1 3

Then he brushed some resin on the break to bond it together.

Rig Repair Front Day 1 4

That finished up this part for now.

Now starting on the side, he used cardboard to create a temporary frame to support the first layers of fiberglass cloth.

Rig Repair Side Day 1 1

By now it was getting to be lunchtime, so along with Jan, we drove up to Stomp’s Burger Joint in Bacliff. This is one of our favorite local places, and nearby too.

Stomp's Hog Wild Burger

Stomp's Half and Half

Great burgers, fries and onion rings.

Getting back to work, Chris next laid in cloth along the bottom of the break and started brushing on resin,

Rig Repair Side Day 1 2

Rig Repair Side Day 1 3

and laying on several more layers of cloth, and then more resin.

Rig Repair Side Day 1 4

Then it’s just resin, cloth, resin, cloth, resin, as he builds up the patch,

Rig Repair Side Day 1 6

Ending up here for the day.

Rig Repair Side Day 1 7

So why do I have my son Chris doing fiberglass body work on my rig? And why do I know that this patch will turn out looking great?

Because of this.

Century Arabian 3

Century Arabian 2

It’s a 1977 16 ft. Century Arabian, with a Ford 351 Windsor (Mercruiser) engine, and a Velvet Drive inboard/outboard drive unit.

When a friend of Chris’ gave (yes, gave) it to him, it hadn’t been used in years, it was sitting out in a field, the bottom was rotted out, and there was a TREE growing out of it.

He spent over two years, refurbishing it from top to bottom, and stem to stern, including rebuilding the 233hp engine and the i/o drive unit. And he did all the work himself.

So I don’t think he’ll have a problem with my piddling little repair job.

_________________________________________________________________

Thought for the Day:

Everyone sees what you appear to be, but few experience what you really are.

 

 


February 6, 2016

A Windy Walk . . .

We did walk this morning, heading out about 11:30, but ended up only doing the first mile because it was so windy.

All the flags around the park were streaming straight out, and the Weather Channel said we were getting gusts to 20 – 25 mph. Even our chairs on the patio had blown over, so we didn’t have breakfast outside either.

We spent the remainder of the afternoon enjoying the RV lifestyle, you know, reading, snacking, watching TV, napping, play on the Internet, etc.

Yeah, that lifestyle.

For dinner tonight, it was really simple – chips and dip, hot dogs, and leftover potato skins from Schobel’s yesterday. Simple, but good.

This past Thursday, the National Archives released another 3000+ pages of previous secret papers concerning the Kennedy assassination. And unless the next President decides otherwise, all the rest will be released by October 2017.

Of course, everyone has their own favorite conspiracy theories, i.e. Castro’s revenge, LBJ, CIA, the grassy knoll, the storm sewer, the Soviet Union, etc.

Take your pick.

Bu for a whole new prospective, check out The Bookmaker, a fictional history of the Kennedy clan, tying together all the many family deaths , from Joe, Jr. in WWII 1944 to John John’s plane crash in 1999. The mastermind behind this recounts his vendetta against Joseph Kennedy, Sr., beginning in England on the eve of WWII when Joe Sr. was the U.S. Ambassador to Great Britain.

The author, Chris Fraser, weaves a very plausible tale, interspersing the real and fictional characters and events into a seamless plotline of murder, intrigue, and secrecy, leaving you to wonder, ”What if this is really true?”

A great read!   Check it out.

Tomorrow morning it’s a early wake-up call so we can meet Vance and Bonnie Clegg, our next door neighbors, at 8am for the breakfast buffet down at Schobel’s in Columbus. Then tomorrow evening we’re probably driving into Katy to have dinner with Brand, Lowell, and Landon.

Really looking forward to both.


Thought for the Day:

“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same, or one day we will spend our sunset years telling our children and our children”s children what it was once like in the United States where men were free.” – Ronald Reagan

 

 


February 6, 2017

9 Years and Counting . . .

Today, February 6th, marks 9 years since Jan and I embarked on the wild and crazy life of Full-Time RV’ing. And it certainly has been a wild ride.

We’ve made a lot of great friends, and unfortunately lost a few along way. We’ve RV’d in every state, except Nebraska and Kansas (and Hawaii, of course). But we plan on taking care of NE and KS in the next few months.

We bought our American Eagle December 27th, 2007 from Roman Holiday Motorhomes on I-35 between New Braunfels and San Marcos. Mr. Roman bought up high-end coaches, checked them out, detailed them, and put them on his lot.

We had narrowed our choice down to the 1999 American Eagle and a 2000 Tiffin Zephyr, but finally went with the Eagle. It had about 65,000 miles on it, just about perfect for an 8 year old rig. Not too much, not too little.

We came back to pick it up January 6th after they had fixed a couple of things and put on new tires. We spent about three hours on the walk-thru going over every system with me watching and Jan taking notes.

As it turned out, our first RV trip was just to the Canyon Trail RV Park, about 8 miles up I-35. We figured we would stay there for a day or two going over the rig ourselves to be sure we understood everything, and could ask Roman Holiday about what we didn’t. But we didn’t find any problems so the next day we headed back to the Houston area.

We had already picked out Oasis RV Park down in La Marque to stay for a month or so until we headed out, so we left Canyon Trail about 10am for the 220 mile trip back to La Marque.

Although I had driven 36 foot U-Hauls before, and even a diesel tanker out at WSTF (White Sands Test Facility) during my NASA days, they weren’t MINE, so to avoid traffic I decided to take Hwy 6 down to Dickinson rather than the 610 Loop or Beltway 8. But this turned out to be not so good an idea.

I had never driven on the upper end of Hwy 6 where it turned out to be miles of stop and go traffic, only the end down towards toward Alvin where it’s more wide open. But we made it with no problems, with Jan was following me in the truck since we didn’t have a towing system set up yet.

We spent the next month getting ready to roll. I ordered a Blue Ox tow bar for the rig and a Blue Ox baseplate for the truck, and spent a couple of days installing the baseplate on our Dodge Dakota. I guess I did a good job because it hasn’t fallen off yet.

Finally, Wednesday, February 6th 2008, we headed for Fairbanks, AK. Well, not directly. But it was our ultimate goal. However our first stop was actually the Monterey’s Mexican Restaurant in Dickinson. It was a favorite of ours, and with their large parking lot, an easy stop. And a tradition that last the next 6 years, with us always stopping there for lunch on our way out of town for the year.

But in making the 9 mile trip from the park to Monterey’s, Jan almost decided to call it quits. The ride was extremely rough, much rougher than I remembered it being coming down from New Braunfels. And Jan said, “If it’s going to be this rough all the way to Alaska, I’m not going.”

So when we got parked at the restaurant, and before we went in, I put in a call to American Coach Tech Support.

When I told the young lady my problem, she kind of chuckled and asked me if I could see the top of the front tires in the wheel wells. When I told her I couldn’t, she said my airbags were turned off.

Now our Eagle has an optional switch that let’s me manually dump the airbags without having it done automagically when I lower the levelers. And I remember playing with it right after we got parked at Oasis.

So I went inside to look and told her that AIR RELEASE switch was in the OFF position. She then asked if the rocker switch was pushed in at the top or the bottom?

I told her it was pushed in at the bottom, and she again chuckled and said that’s the OFF position. I then ask her why it says AIR RELEASE at the top of the switch, You would think that you would push the switch in at the top to ‘release’ the air.

She said, “Beats me. You’re not the first person to get it confused.”

Seems it would make more sense to have just labeled it AIRBAGS ON and OFF. But they didn’t asked me. They don’t seem to ask me about a lot of things, and I think the world is worse off for it.

Coming out from lunch I cranked up and the coach came right up on the airbags, and now I could now see the top of the front tires below the wheel wells.

So of course it was smooth sailing after that.

Well, not exactly.

But we did end up in Fairbanks, AK on April 26th, two and a half months later, only to have this two days later.

AK Snow

But more of our Year One adventures in tomorrow’s blog.


Thought for the Day:

Sad, But True.

Media-Narrative-Chart2

 


February 6, 2018

Good Friends and Food . . .

We met up with our long-time friends, Chris and Charles Yust, who are on their way back from Quartzite, AZ to their site in Florida. They’re staying at the Oasis RV Park down in La Marque, which was the very first RV park we stayed at after we bought our rig in 2007.

King Food Chris and Charles Yust

We bought our rig at Roman Holiday Motorhomes in New Braunfels, TX on December 27th, 2007. Then we picked it on January 6th and came back to the Oasis Park. We stayed there, getting ready to go full-time. Then on February 6th we headed to Alaska . . . by way of Casa Grande, Yuma, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Flagstaff, Phoenix, Tucson, Albuquerque, Santa Fe, Colorado Springs, Casper, Billings, Garrison, Coeur d’Alene, Cle Elum, and then into Canada just north of Bellingham at Sumas. Whew!

And on April 26th we were in Fairbanks until September 20th.


We got to King Food a few minutes early, so since  they  take awhile we went ahead and ordered two plates of their delicious Crispy Chicken Wings with Garlic and Butter while we were waiting for Chris and Charles.

King Food Chicken Wings

Luckily they liked them as much as we do. In fact said they were the best wings she’d ever had.

Everyone got something different for their entre. Chris got the combo Lo Mein, while Charles went with the Sweet & Sour Chicken.

Jan got the Chicken with Hot Garlic Sauce and Jalapenos,

King Food Chicken Garlic Jalapeno 2

We spent the next couple of hours talking over all our adventures.since we say them last. And we’re getting together tomorrow at Jimmy Changas for Mexican.

Tomorrow Jan has her makeup checkup with her urologist that was put off from last Thursday when there was an equipment malfunction.



The Headline of the Day:
San Diego Girl Scout Sells Over 300 Boxes of Cookies in 6 Hours Outside Marijuana Shop.

Well, duh!


Thought for the Day:

Nothing Is Written


February 6, 2019

A Big Mistake . . .

My changeover to the new 2019 SSL certificate went off without a hitch this morning, except the long wait for everything to come back up.

All I had to do was rename the old certificate from XXXXX.CRT to XXXXX.CRT2019 and then rename the new one from 2019Cert (just a name I gave it) to XXXXX.CRT.

Then it was just a matter of putting the Shopping Cart into Maintenance Mode, stopping the Apache Webserver software, and rebooting the server.

And then wait. And wait.

But only 20 minutes this time. Just enough time to get slightly anxious. But finally it was all back up and running. But just to be sure I ran a credit card order through with no problem. And then a few minutes later a real order came through, so I guess we were good to go.

I spent the rest of the day modifying a bunch of epilator machines. These machines all use a foot pedal to trigger the pulse that zaps the hair follicle. But somewhere along the line one manufacturer changed the wiring of the foot pedal and the socket on the machine that it plugs into. So what this means is that old pedals don’t work with new machines and new pedals don’t work with old machines.

So if you have an older machine and you order a new pedal for some reason, it won’t work. But there’s no way to tell. The machines all look the same, and the serial numbers don’t help either.

But after a little fiddling, I came up with a simple modification to the machines that lets any machine used any pedal. So all machines that we ship out now, both used and new, are modified to accept both old and new pedals.

Jan and I are still enjoying the twist and turns of the new Roswell, New Mexico series. The only thing that’s disappointing is that they’ve made no effort to duplicate the town’s street lights. Anyone who’s ever been there knows exactly what I’m talking about.

Roswell Street Lamps

They’re iconic, just like the ones in Hershey, PA.

Hershey PA Streetlights

I made a big mistake yesterday at King Food. I wiped my eye.

Normally not a big problem, right?

But it is when I’ve gotten a small piece of my Volcanic Pepper Flakes on my finger wthout knowing it.

Yoooowh!

Jan said my eye turned a bright red. She should have seen it from my side.

I guess I got some on my fingers when I was cleaning the lid so it would close tighter.

I will definitely try not to make that mistake again.

Tomorrow Jan and I will head up to Houston about 10am for our Katz’s Deli, iBurn, Houston RV Show excursion.

And no, we’re not looking for a new RV.

I know where all the problems are on ours now, and I don’t want to pay a lot of money for a whole new set of problems.

We’re mainly going just to walk around and check out all the vendors, one of our favorite things to do at these events.


Thought for the Day:

Batman-vi

 


February 6, 2020

A New Mugshot . . .

We were pulling out of our site at 8:28 this morning, 2 minutes ahead of my schedule. This was surprising since I didn’t even get up until 7, and I had done no packing last night.

But somehow I got packed, the truck loaded, the oil level checked, and we were ready to go on time. We had dropped Karma off at our office manager’s last night so no problem with that.

Our first stop was about 45 minutes later at the Baytown Buc-ee’s for fuel, coffee, and kolaches. And a new 40oz mug.

Come And Take It Mug

I had left my other one at home, so this one caught my eye. Mine came with a handle, and I got to fill it with coffee for free. Nice!

We made a pit stop at the TX/LA border rest area, which was finally open after about 3 years of construction.

Then after another stop at the Flying J at the Breaux Bridge exit, we arrived at our La Quinta hotel about 3:30. But before we checked in, we decided to have dinner at the Cracker Barrel right next door.

And since it was Thursday, Jan was able to get her favorite Turkey and Dressing, while I got a order of the Beans and Greens with a Side Salad.

Checking into the La Quinta, we found it nice but somewhat dated. But since it was only $54 vs $104 for the La Quinta just a couple of miles north on I-12, it was a great deal.

Overall today was a really nice trip, with no construction slowdowns or traffic accidents. In fact I think it was the first trip we’ve ever done with absolutely no problems.

Tomorrow we’ve got a 287 mile run on to  Montgomery with a lunch stop near Mobile at Sonny’s BBQ, another of our favorites.


Thought For The Day:

They call it a ‘selfie’ because ‘narcissistic’ is too hard to spell.

 

 

 

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