$%#@*&% . . .

After all the problems at work Friday with out digital phone system, I was looking forward to getting some other stuff done. Only to discover when I got in to the office that now the credit card machines are down.

Well they were working fine when I left Friday.

The credit card machines are also Internet-based so I started tracing back from the router and found that the power had been unplugged from the router. And plugging it back in got the machines working again.

Turns out that my client came into the office over the weekend and decided to ‘tidy’ things up with the wiring.

And while I was trying to get that problem fixed, the phone system went down.


But with a little more moving stuff around, I found a bad Ethernet cable. And after I replaced it, everything was working again.

Since that was my last spare cable, I ordered 6 more 10ft ones from Amazon.

I need some new laces for one of my pair of boots, and I came across these.

Lock Laces

Strangely, they’re actually elastic, but very strong.

You lace them up like normal and then use the lace lock to tighten them down.

Lock Laces Book

Boot Lock Laces

I’m pretty particular about how tight my boots are laced up, so I was doubtful about these.

But they work great.

Thought for the Day:

Husband: Why do you keep buying plants and then just killing them?

Wife: So you’ll know what I’m capable of!

July 11, 2009

Mt. Vernon, George Washington, but no cherry tree…

This is our last full day here in the Washington DC area,  so we started it with breakfast for one last time at the Silver Diner.

After that we drove down to Mt Vernon to visit George Washington’s home on the Potomac River.

Mount Vernon

We got there about 11 am and the place was packed.  They were already into overflow parking.

After watching a very good film at the Welcome Center on George Washington in the French and Indian War, and the Revolutionary War, we headed up the house itself.

And ran into a very long line.


They said it would take about 55 minutes to get into the house.

They lied.  It took over 90 minutes to get in.

But in the meantime,  we got to see some very old trees lining the path that were planted by George Washington.



They even have these old trees protected with lightning rods to keep them safe.

Lightning Rod

Finally we got within sight of the actual house itself.

Mount Vernon2

After touring the very large house (over 9000 square feet in three floors) we got to sit on the wide front porch and look out on the same river view that George Washington used to enjoy.

One interesting tidbit we learned from one of the guides during the house tour was that George and Martha must have presented a somewhat odd appearance as a couple.

George was about 6′ 3″ and Martha was 4′ 11″.  Talk about ‘stooping to conquer”.

View from porch

And from the big smile on her face, Jan enjoys it too.

Jan on Porch

After leaving Mount Vernon, we drove over to Alexandria, VA to eat at the Chart House restaurant on the Potomac River.

After a very good meal we headed back to the coach to get ready to leave tomorrow morning.

On To Montgomery, AL

July 11, 2010

Old Times and Old Friends…

We left the Moose Lodge in Jackson about 9:00 am, first heading down the road about 8 miles to Pearl, MS to have the breakfast buffet at Shoney’s.

I always enjoy the looks on people’s faces as 63 feet of RV and toad come trundling thru the parking lot along with the cars. When we are thinking of stopping at a restaurant on the road like this, I usually use Google Maps and Google Street View to check out the area for parking opportunities. So far we’ve always been able to make it work.  Here we are in Rawlins, WY.

Rawlins 1

Except for some rough roads in MS, the trip was pretty smooth and easy. We arrived at the Capital City RV Park in Montgomery AL about 2:45 pm and got set up.

About 4 pm we called our friends Fred and Susan Springall to set up a time to get together for dinner tonight

Fred and I worked together at Storer Cable TV here in Montgomery from Aug 1977 to December 1978 when I moved to Houston to go to work for NASA. Although we kept in touch with Christmas cards and such, this is the first time we’ve seen each other in almost 32 years. We’ve got a lot to catch up on.

We went over to their house about 5 pm, and after talking over old times with Fred and his wife Susan, we drove over to a nearby Country’s BBQ for a great dinner of Alabama BBQ. Jan had a Sliced Pork Plate, and I had a Conglomeration Platter, a conglomeration of Ribs, Sliced Pork, and Sliced Beef.

MMM! MMM! Good!

After dinner we drove back over the RV park to give Fred and Susan a tour of our rig. We put out some chairs and spent more time talking. About 8:30 pm we said our goodnights, and they headed home. We’ll probably get together one more time before we leave.

That normally would have been it for the night, except for more thing.

About 11:30 pm we lost shore power for about a minute and then it came right back on. And went off again, and again.

The bad thing was that the 2nd time it went off I was saving this blog post, and since the write to the Hard Drive was interrupted, I lost everything. That’s why I’m late posting today, or last night, actually.

Turns out it was my Electrical Management System dropping the shore power because the voltage was too high, over 132 volts!

After some investigation, at 1:30 in the morning, I found I could use the 20 amp service OK. It was only about 125 volts, and that was enough to run 1 A/C.

This morning the voltage was back down to 122 so I switched back to 50 amp. I can only figure that’s it’s jacked to take the A/C load in the heat of the day, And then at night the voltage spikes high.

If you don’t have an EMS, you would never see the problem, but it really shortens the life of anything electrical plugged into it.

We’ll see what happens tonight.

July 11, 2011

Little Diamonds and Big Plates . . .

We headed out at 9:45 for the Little Diamond Thousand Trails Park about 245 miles away. It’s located in Newport, WA, about 40 miles north of Spokane.

And hopefully our visit to this park will include satellite TV, since Jan’s starting to go into withdrawal.

But we only got about 10 miles down the road on US-2 before we came to a screeching halt. Well, maybe not screeching, but my brakes did squeal a bit.

Turns out there was a rock slide blocking one lane so we had to wait a while. But at least we had some nice scenery to look at while we waited.

US 2 -10

US 2 -9

US 2 -11

Then right after we crossed the Columbia River at Wenatchee, it was like a whole different country, with lush valleys full of vineyards, apple orchards, and apricot trees. Talk about a change in scenery.

US 2 -12

And then it happened again. Right after we left Douglas, we climbed up on a high plateau where the road ran straight as an arrow due east, bracketed by green and yellow wheat fields as far as the eye could see.

US 2 -13

Then around Coulee City it happened again with canyons and hills like in New Mexico.

US 2 -14

And then back to rolling hills and farms again.

US 2 -15

Right outside of Spokane we got on I-90 for about 3 miles before exiting north right though downtown Spokane, At that point we were 40 miles from our park.

Driving through the city wasn’t bad, and about an hour later we were pulling into our park right outside of Newport, WA, which is only about 10 miles from the Idaho border.

It turns out this is a NACO park, and also a KOA park. Kinda different. We got checked in, parked the rig and unhooked the toad, and then drove around looking for a good site.

We found a nice one in a new area that had just opened. I don’t think anyone had ever stayed here before. We got parked and set up about 4:30, and then came the real test.

Satellite TV.

Little Diamond TT

But we had a clear view of the sky without too many trees so it worked perfectly. Jan said she was ‘giddy’.

About 5:30 we drove into Newport about 10 miles east to have dinner at Rancho Alegre, the one and only Mexican restaurant in town, on the recommendation of the lady who checked us in.

And boy was she right. The food was delicious and the portions were huge.

Rancho Alegre 1

I got a cup of tortilla soup as a appetizer, and it could have been the whole meal. I ended up taking almost all of it home.

Rancho Alegre 2

We got back home a little after 7 pm and settled in for the season premiere of some of our favorite shows: Rizzoli & Isles, Warehouse 13 and Eureka.

Life is good!

July 11, 2013

The Heat is On . . .

I spent the morning figuring out where we’re going when we leave here on Saturday. And now I know where we’re going to be for the next week.

Our first stop will be in Albert Lea, MN, where  I found a nice, cheap site at the Freeborn County Fairgrounds there. We’ll only be there the one night, and then it’s on to the Wisconsin Dells where we’ll stay for 5 nights at the K and L Campground, a Passport America park.

After that, it gets a little squishy. We may spend a few days on the peninsular at Sturgeon Bay, before we head up to Sault Ste Marie for a while, or we may just go straight from the Dells to the UP. We’ll figure it out next week.

About 1pm Jan and I headed a few miles down the road to see another movie. We were hoping to make it another two’fer like yesterday, but couldn’t make the times and theaters work out. So we decided to see “The Heat” with Sandra Bullock and Melissa McCarthy of TV’s ‘Mike and Molly”. Today’s movie was at a different theater than yesterday’s movies. And because of that, our tickets cost us over twice as much.

Yesterday’s movies were at an older mall and the theater was basically a ‘Dollar’ movie, and at $3.00 a ticket, a lot cheaper than the $6.25 we paid today. And unlike a lot of other second tier theaters, it was very nice inside, and more importantly, your feet don’t stick to the floor.

The mall housing yesterday’s theater was kind of interesting too. Although it still has a few retail stores besides the 7 screen theater, about 10 years ago they started converting it to a professional office building housing doctors, lawyers, real estate agents, financial companies, etc. And it must be pretty successful, because they’re adding on to it.

We both really enjoyed ‘The Heat’ since we liked Sandra Bullock for a long time, and Melissa McCarthy’s Mike and Molly is one of our favorite TV shows. Though be forewarned that the movie is rated ‘R’, and it’s definitely for the language, not sex.

By the time the movie was over it was after 4pm so we headed next door to have dinner at Ruby Tuesday. It’s been a while since we’ve eaten at one, but we’ve saw their new ads on TV, and we’ve always liked their big salad bar. Jan had the Blackened Tilapia and I had the Grilled Chicken and Shrimp, both very good. And they had something new.

They now have a competitor for Red Lobster’s Cheddar Bay Biscuits. They’re called Maple Bacon Garlic Cheese Biscuits and they’re even better than Red Lobster’s. Worth going back just for them.

Tomorrow we’ll may try to take in another movie or two. We’ll see.

Indian Lakes Thousand Trails

July 11, 2014

Thanks, Ed . . .

Thanks to my friend Ed Hurlburt of the RV Tips section of Facebook, I found out about these really neat LED lights. Ed has had good luck using them to replace the small T8 fluorescents in his RV, so I thought I’d give them a try.

They are actually 12v LED Running Lights for autos and trucks. Ed originally found them on eBay starting here:


So if you want to buy a set for your RV, you can get them for a little over $21.00.

But if you want to buy them to use as running lights for your vehicle, you can get them here for a little under $10.00. Wink, wink.


LED Replacement Lights 1

But I decided to check out Amazon and found them here.

Super Bright COB White Auto 12v LED Running Light

When I ordered a set on Tuesday, they had 6 left. When I went to order more today, they had 3 left. So I ordered all 3 since that’s how many more sets I needed.

When I ordered the set on Tuesday, they were $7.99 with Prime Free Shipping. But when I went to order today, they had jumped to $8.99. But now the Amazon ad says they’re out of stock from this supplier.

But I found a bunch of other Amazon sources, some slightly more expensive, and some with Prime Shipping.

More Amazon Sources for LED Running lights

Using the set I got in yesterday, I thought I’d just do a trial installation to see how they worked. I started by removing the diffuser cover and the two F15T8 bulbs.

LED Upgrade 7

Next, to get to the 12v wiring, I squeezed the center metal cover together until it was released from the clips.

LED Upgrade 8

The circuit board is the ballast that takes the 12v and steps it up to the voltage needed for the F15T8 bulb. The black and white wires are the 12 volts coming in to the fixture. Be careful though fooling around with these lights. Although there is only 12v coming to the fixture, the ballast puts out several hundred volts when you first turn it on, and then settles down to about 100 volts while the light is on.

LED Upgrade 9

I clipped the 12v wires so I could feed it into the new LED strips

LED Upgrade 1

The LED lights have a peel-off adhesive strip on the back so I stuck them to the top of the fixture.

LED Upgrade 3

I next put the center ballast cover back in place to protect the ballast, and also to help reflect the light out.

LED Upgrade 4

Here’s what the bathroom looks like without the light.

LED Upgrade 5

And here’s what it looks like turned on.

LED Upgrade 6

Compared to the F15T8 bulbs I’m replacing, the LED light put pit anywhere from 50% more light to more than double, at about 1/2 the wattage.

For example, a Cool White F15T8 bulb puts about 825 lumens, consuming about 15 watts And a Daylight F15T8 bulb puts out about 700 lumens for the same 15 watts.

Although the specs on the LED lights call them Cool White, they’re not. Cool White bulbs have a color temperature of about 4000K. The LED’s have a color temperature of 6000K, making it a Daylight light source.

Also the LED lights put out anywhere from 1000 lumens to 1500 lumens, depending on the voltage range. ( I.e. 12.6 volts to 13.6) using about 6 – 10 watts.

And they’re waterproof, for that additional light in the shower.

I’ll probably go in tomorrow and finish up the wiring. I’ll let you know how they work out.

A little before 5pm we all headed out for one more try to have dinner at the Sherman House Restaurant. And this time we were successful.

But a little disappointed.

One of things we’ve enjoyed so much in the past was their excellent German dishes. But now, no Sauerbraten, no Jaeger Schnitzel, and no Red Cabbage. Bummer.

But we all ended up enjoying our meals anyway. So it was all good.

Jan had the Fried Chicken, and I had the Apple Roasted Pork Tenderloin.

Everyone really enjoyed what they had, and the service was very good too. We’ll go back.


July 11, 2015

I Like ‘Em . . .

Jan and I pulled out of the Amarillo Ranch RV Park right on time at 9am. We were heading for Pauls V alley, OK, about 60 miles south of Oklahoma City. We’re spending a few days here visiting our son-in-law Lowell’s parent’s Sonja and Lendel Morrison.

Right before I disconnected shore power, I started up the genset, and about 45 seconds later, the transfer switch connected the genset to the coach and we had power for the AC’s’. And with the temps forecast to be in the 90’s the whole way, we would certainly need the AC’s. And as it turns out, despite our recent problems with the system, the genset ran the whole 6 hours with no problems, and we stayed nice and cool the entire way. Since the genset never stopped, we didn’t have a problem with the transfer switch not working without shore power.

The 315 mile trip went very smoothly, except for a 10 mile stretch near Norman where they had things down to one lane, a very narrow lane, because they had the barrels way over into our lane. This meant that I was partially driving on the seam between the roadway and the shoulder, and the new pavement kept grabbing the rig and pulling it more onto the shoulder. But finally we were into OKC and heading south on I-35.

We pulled into the Pauls Valley City Lake RV Park about 3pm, and got parked and set up. A really nice park, it’s not well advertised and pretty much underutilized by RV’ers. It’s mostly just the local boaters on the weekend.

But where can you get a view like this at $13 a night for 50 amp FHU. Very nice.

Pauls Valley City Lake

About 4:30 we made the 15 minute trip over Sonja and Lendel’s. Then after catching up, we drove over to Tio’’s Mexican Restaurant for dinner. Turns out that Tio’s is well-known in the area, and the 30 minute wait showed it.

Their chips are made in-house and are probably the best ones I’ve ever eaten. And the rest of the meal followed right behind. Really great Mexican.

Tomorrow Sonja and Lendel are taking us on a tour of OKC, and we’re really looking forward to it.

I now have about 1000 miles on my new Ironman I-601 rig tires, and I like ‘em. They do feel a little different, not bad, or anything. But they do respond differently to road surfaces. They do feel very firm and don’t seem to be affected by bumps as much as my last set.

There was something that nagged me for a while until I figured it out. The subliminally faint sound that the tread pattern makes on the pavement is different from my previous Sumitomo’s. It’s slightly higher in pitch, and has a different beat. But I realized today that it didn’t bother me anymo

A 5 Course Prix Fixe

July 11, 2016

It’s Coming Back?

There is a sign along I-10 coming into Katy that shows some oil industry stats, like the price of a barrel of oil and the price of 1MMBtu of natural gas. But maybe the most important stat is the rig count. And boy, did it jump recently.

About three weeks ago when we drove by, the count was 408 (+4). The (+4) means 4 more rigs since last week. And that +4 was the first time I’d seen the count go up in a good while.

But today the count was 440 (+9). WOW!  Maybe that explains why we seem to be seeing a lot more trucks passing us on the Interstate carrying casing and drill pipe.

Hopefully this bodes well for our next Gate Guarding adventure in six weeks or so.

Regular blog readers know that Little’s V Vietnamese Bistro in Katy is one of our all-time favorite places, but our meal tonight was something extra.

Every July, Thuyen, the owner, has a benefit dinner to raise money to build schools for the poor children in the rural mountain regions of Vietnam. But since we’re not normally here in July this is the first one we’ve had a chance to attend.

The menu consisted of 5 course prix fixe (“fixed price”), complete with a bottle of wine.

LittleV Menu_thumb[2]

The first course was a Grilled Pork Meatball appetizer with mushrooms and herbs.

LittleV Meatball

Very flavorful and spicy too. In fact ‘a little spicy’ seemed to be the default for the evening.

Next was a Julienned Green Mango salad with homemade dressing and topped off with shrimp.

LittleV Mango Salad

Next up was the soup course with a spicy Beef Brisket Phở with Rice Vermicelli Noodles, really, really good.

LittleV Brisket Pho

The next course was your choice of entrees, either Marinated and Grilled Catfish with Vermicelli and Vegetables, or Lemongrass Chicken with Rice.

Jan had the Catfish while I had the Chicken, which we shared with each other. Again, really good.

LittleV Grilled Catfish

LittleV Grilled LemonGrass Chicken

Wrapping the final course was a Chilled Coconut Milk Tapioca with Fruit, just the perfect sweetness to finish off a really great meal.

LittleV Coconut Dessert

One thing about the meal is that, although the portions seemed kind of small, by the time the meal was over, you were stuffed.

A really great meal for a great charity.

It seems like one day on Facebook, someone is either singing the praises of Good Sam ERS (Emergency Road Service), or damning them to perdition. And then the next day it’s Coach-Net’s turn in the ring.

For the last nine years, we used both, switching back and forth every now and then. Over the years, we’ve been towed five times, twice with the rig in Canada, twice with the rig in the US, and once with the truck. And we’ve been unstuck twice.

But we’ve always gotten good service from both. mostly recently when we were towed into Prescott, AZ after our blow-out last May.

One thing every tow driver has told me is that in almost every area there is a central pool of tow companies, and everyone, Good Sam’s, Coach-Net, AAA, State Farm, GEICO, Allstate, etc., all pull from that same pool, so the company you use really doesn’t make a difference. So if Good Sam can’t get you a tow truck for 4 hours, probably neither can Coach-Net.

Now I’ve heard some people said that one road service company gets preference with the tow drivers because they pay quicker. Funny thing about this is, it always seems to be a different company that pays quicker, never the same one.

So pick one and go for it.

Magic Cookies

July 11, 2017

Coooookkkkiieeesss . . .

We’ve in a nice site here at Lake Conroe Thousand Trails, high up on the hill so the water runs off with no problems.

And with all the rain we had yesterday, that was a good thing.

Lake Conroe Site G13

Our home here at G13.

Heard some good news for the oil patch today. Halliburton announced that they’re really ramping up frack crew hiring to over 100 a month. And they’ve increased their frack equipment by over 30% the last couple of months.

As with this week’s jump of 12 new drilling rigs, it bodes well for us gate guards.

For dinner tonight we finished off the last of Jan’s delicious Hamburger Vegetable Soup from yesterday.

Hamburger Vegetable Soup

And earlier in the afternoon I whipped up a variation of Magic Cookie Bars for dessert. But Jan and I can never leave a recipe alone. So we made a few modifications

We did start out with the crumbled graham crackers and butter mixture pressed into the silicone pan. Next I poured the can of Sweetened Condensed Milk over the crust and let it soak in.

Magic Cookie Bars 1

But rather than using chocolate chips, I crumbled up a sleeve of Girl Scout Thin Mints over the crust. Then I sprinkled the coconut over the pan.

Magic Cookie Bars 2

Finishing up with the chopped pecan topping, it went into the oven at 350° for 25 minutes.

Magic Cookie Bars 3

Although in the photo the pecans look burnt, it’s just the lighting. They’re actually perfect toasted.

Magic Cookie Bars 4

And the bars were really good. The little hint of mint from the cookies adds a really nice touch.

And the fact that I left both the graham crackers and the cookies in larger pieces, meant the bars were really crunchy chewy.

Tomorrow we’ll do some shopping and pick up some prescriptions at Wal-Mar/Sam’s.

And probably dinner somewhere.

July 11, 2018

HotSpot Not . . .

Well, things are starting to come together now that we’re back in residence here at the Petticoat Junction RV Park in Santa Fe, TX

I did finally get someone to mow the grass at our house today, so that’s done for a week or so, at least. Darn stuff just keeps growing.

Readers will remember that I set up a couple of the Wyze cameras at the house before we left on our trip, but it hasn’t work out as well as I had hoped. I left Jan’s cell phone there, plugged in to a charger, to provide a WiFi hotspot for both cameras and also a remote-controlled lamp.

But I ran into a problem with the hotspot. I had set it up here at the rig for a week before we left and it worked fine, never dropping out. But a couple of days after we left on our trip, the system shut down, both cameras and the lamp. I figured the hotspot had turned off, or everything had been stolen. I was hoping for the former, not the latter.

When our son Chris came back down to pick up some last things he turned the hotspot back on and it worked . . . for a couple of days. Then it quit again.

A couple of days later, Piper came and turned it back on. And a couple of days later it quit again. Then when we got back this past Monday we turned it back on, and a day later it quit again. ???

Then our son Chris gave us a clue on what was happening. He said they’ve had a lot of short power outages at the house recently. So when that happens, the cameras and the lamp controller shut down for a while. But the phone stays on, and after a couple of minutes with nothing connected to it to the hotspot, it shuts off, supposedly to save power. And as far as I can tell from online there’s no way to fix this.

I could take my Jetpack MiFi over there and use that, but then I’d have to reconfigure the cameras and light controller to work on the MiFi, and also reconfigure all the Alexa’s, remote switches, etc., here in the rig to work off Jan’s phone. So probably not.

Tomorrow morning Jan has a doctor’s appointment for some regular every six month tests. Then after breakfast at the Egg and I, a doctor’s appointment ritual, we’ll head over to the house and start making a list of things we want to do there before we put in on the market. And of course, turn the hotspot back on.

Pho20, Again

July 11, 2019

No Good Deed . . .

Though Thursdays (and Tuesdays)  are days I normally don’t go into the office, I ended up there this morning, due to a stupid offer I made yesterday afternoon right before I left.

Jennifer, our office manager, has been out with the flu since last Friday, and the orders have really been piling up, so yesterday I offered to come in today to help out.

No good deed goes unpunished, they say.

But it meant that I was there when my new TENS unit came in, though I didn’t get to play with it until I got home this evening.

After I got home about 4pm we headed out for dinner we made a return visit to Pho20 for another round of Spicy Garlic Chicken for Jan,

Pho 20 Spicy Chili Garlic Chicken

and a big bowl of White Meat Chicken Pho for me.

Pho 20 Chicken Veggie Pho

And as usual we both started out with our favorite House Crunch Salad.

Pho 20 Crunch Salad

Just as delicious as always.

Back home I took a look at my new TENS, and so far I really like it.. Turns out that this is actually a professional model that once was only available with a prescription. And reflecting that, it’s more much adjustable. It comes in a nice hard plastic case with two sets of leads. But the big plus for me is that though it has a timer, it can also be set to run continuously.

I can adjust the intensity of course, but also the pulse width, the pulse rate, and the mode, I.e. Burst, Steady, Modulated, and Strength-Duration modes. I’m really looking forward to the Normal mode, which just a steady buzz, and not an On-Off rate.

The professional background of the unit is indicated by the fact that it’s much more powerful than my other units. With the new one, I can only turn it up to about 4 before it becomes painful. With the old one, I had to turn it up to about 9 before reaching the same pain level. In addition, it also tracks 60 sets of patent records for up to 999 treatment hours.

The only two negatives are the fact that it uses a 9 volt battery rather than being rechargeable like the other one, but the battery supposedly will last for about 20 years. But I ordered a 9 volt battery eliminator anyway.

The other problem is that fact that that the pads and leads are non-standard, meaning they want to sell you their more expensive pads. But the connectors where the leads plug into the unit ARE standard, and the old leads/pads work fine.

I may hook it up tonight just to see how it does.

Not Cool

July 11, 2020

The Fix That Didn’t . . .

Jan got a new shirt yesterday that she found on Facebook. It’s a really nice material and very comfortable.

Karma T-Shirt

Of course one reason she likes it is because it looks a lot like our Karma.

Karma CloseUp

I told Jan I can get a permanent Sharpie and fill in Karma’s Hitleresque mustache onto the shirt for her. She said No.

Jan and I tried a new place for ‘linner’ today, and it turned out to be really good. it’s called Salata and has locations in Texas, California, Georgia, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Illinois, and Florida. It’s basically like a Chipotle with salads and wraps, but with much less emphasis on the Mexican side of the menu.

Like Chipotle, you go down a cafeteria line telling the server what kind of salad mix you want, and then which of the 50+ veggie, fruit, and meat ingredients you want on it. Here’s Salata’s menu.

They also have Tomato Basil, Broccoli, and Chipotle White Bean soups, so Jan and I got a bowl of the bean version, which was really, really good too.

Salata Bowl and Soup

The only problem was that we didn’t realize how large the regular salad was. The stainless steel bowl is almost 12” across. Next time we’ll get the small one, especially if we’re also going to get soup, which we probably will since it’s so good.

And we will go back.

As far as the ‘fix’ that didn’t, yesterday morning when I headed into work, my truck AC wasn’t working. It was just blowing warm air.

Now it was working fine Thursday evening for Jan and I, so I was hoping it was just a blown fuse, or something else simple. But, alas that was not to be.

So this morning I went out to take a look at it. The fuse/relay was fine, so next I checked the 12vdc that feeds the electric clutch on the front of the A/C compressor. The voltage was good, and when I plugged the connector back it, I heard the loud ‘click’ as it pulled in, so it was OK.

I replaced this compressor about 4 years ago, just because the clutch was bad, so I was glad to hear it working.

My next step was to check the Freon level. A while back I had picked up one of these A/C Pro recharge kits on a ‘just in case’ basis.

AC Pro Freon

But plugging it in to the system, I was very surprised to find the gauge showing no Freon at all. Now what was surprising about this is that the clutch voltage goes through a low-pressure switch which is supposed to keep the clutch from engaging the compressor with too low a Freon level.

This is because the oil in the Freon system is what lubricates the compressor internals, so you don’t want it running without Freon/oil.

Checking out the A/C piping I saw no signs of any obvious leaking, I.e. oil, so I started adding Freon from the can. And the level gradually started coming up until it was in the middle of the green band. And now I had nice cold air coming out of the vents.

But I didn’t expect it to last, since it had obviously leaked out before. And it didn’t.

When we headed out to Salata about 4pm, the air coming out of the vents was cool, not cold. And when we were coming home it was only ‘coolish’. So I’ll have to get it in the shop next week.

Ultimate Omelets

July 11, 2021

New And Improved . . .

For the first time in days it was nice enough, and dry enough, to set outside with our coffee this morning. In fact I think this is the first 24 hour period in a couple of weeks when when we haven’t had heavy rains during the day. Some days it looks like our puddles have puddles.

About 1pm Jan and I headed over to the Denny’s for our Ultimate Omelets, and then it was over to HEB for some groceries. Before we left I add the last half of the can of Seafoam to the Jeep’s tank in a last-ditch effort to save a trip to the mechanic tomorrow afternoon. But, unfortunately, there was no improvement.

So as soon we got home and got the groceries put away, we headed back out, with me in the Dakota and Jan following in the Jeep. The truck was low on gas and I wanted to top it off before we drop off the Jeep at the mechanic’s tomorrow afternoon. I also added a bottle of STA-BIL Gas Treatment since the Dakota doesn’t get driven all that much anymore, so I don’t want the gas to go bad while it just sits here parked in front of the rig for weeks at a time.

In fact I think the last time I drove the Dakota was back in Nov. 2020 when we drove it up to Conroe to bring the Jeep back to Santa Fe after we bought it.

So tomorrow afternoon after I get home from work, we’ll take the Jeep down and drop it off at the mechanic’s and see what he can come up with.

I know you’ve all been waiting for this to come on the market, and it’s finally here. New and Improved.

Bliinker Fluid

Finishing up, I thought you might enjoy this.

Thought For The Day:

Don’t be afraid of the robot that passes the Turing test. Be afraid of the one that deliberately fails it.