Recent Acquisitions . . .

First off, Jan and I want to wish her sister, Debbie, a Very, Very Happy Birthday!]

May be an image of 2 people and indoor

Jan and I were in a BBQ mode so we headed over to the nearby Spring Creek BBQ.

As I’ve said before, I like Rudy’s BBQ a little better, especially their Creamed Corn. However Jan likes Spring Creek better.

So we compromise by going to Spring Creek. Hey, I know how it works.

Jan had her usual Baby Back Ribs with Beans and Beans.

Spring Creek Jan's Ribs 20220704

And I went with my usual BB Ribs and Hot Pepper Sausage, also with Beans and Beans.

Spring Creek Ribs and Sausage 20220704

Delicious as always.

Then it was on up to the Kroger in Webster to pick up a prescription for Metformin. And because we used the Kroger Rx Savings Plan, the Metformin was FREE, as are a number of other common ones.

Then it was on back down to our local WalMart for a few things for the week, before heading home for the day.

Thought I’d give y’all an update on some of our recent acquisitions.

So far I’m very happy with my new elastic lock boot laces.

Lock Laces Book

Elastic Lock Laces

I was worried that they wouldn’t hold up being stretched very tight every time I put my boots on, but so far they’re doing great. They really keep my boots tight on my feet.

We’re both really happy with our VivoHome Ice Maker.

Vivohome Ice Maker

Jan was kind of skeptical at first about whether we really needed it. But now she wouldn’t want to be without it. In our case, three .5 liter bottles of water every other day makes a gallon zipper bag stuffed full of ice.

My only problem with it is that it needs a beeper of some sort to let us know when the ice bin is full, or that the unit is out of water. Since it doesn’t have refrigeration for the ice storage bin, you want to get it into the freezer as soon as possible.

But sitting off to the side, it’s easy to not see the little red light.

Sounds like something in need of a kludge solution.


There’s been a lot of talk about the heat wave in Europe, but it’s amazing what five years can do.

Here’s a weather report on a German TV from about a month ago, showing the high temps for that day.

Note that map is all red, indicating the heat wave over Europe.

Germany Heat Wave 2

The high shown on the map, 32°C, is about 90°F, so a mild summer day in Texas.

But here’s the same map on the same TV station on the same day five years ago in 2017.

Germany Heat Wave 1

Note the map is green, you know, just an average June day in Germany.

And also note that almost every temp on the 2017 map is higher than the ones in 2022.

In fact, the high of 37°C is about 99°F.

So what’s different about the temps then and now?

Well, because now it’s caused by Climate Change and we’re all gonna die.


Thought For The Day:

image


July 28, 2009

Up, Up, and Not Away!

Today was to be our last day here in Florida, NY,  but we decided to stay an extra day, so we won’t be leaving until Thursday now.

In the morning, I installed the latest board that my Electrical Management System company sent me, and this one seems to have fixed the problem.  We’ll see.

After having lunch at Chumley’s, a local BBQ restaurant, we drove about 40 miles over to West Nyack, NY to see the animated movie ‘UP’.  We drove that far because it was the only theater in the area still showing it.

We both really enjoyed ‘UP’. It was very well done, and not predictable. And it will bring a tear to your eye.

The mall where we went to the movie is called Palisades Center, and is the 10th largest mall in the US.  I think it’s the largest mall we’ve seen.

It’s 4 stories tall, 5 if you include the underground parking garage, and contains a lot of stores you don’t see in an enclosed mall, but usually only in standalone buildings, like Best Buy,  Burlington Coat Factory, Target, Bed Bath & Beyond, and Home Depot.

It also has a 21 theater cinema, an IMAX theater, an ice skating rink, a Ferris Wheel, and a double-decker carousel.

We got back home about 5 pm, only to have the park power go off about 30 minutes later.  Apparently a car hit a power pole down the road.

The power was off for about 45 minutes, and even when it came back on, the voltage was only about 105 volts.

Hopefully it will be better tomorrow morning.  This low voltage can be hard on the AC’s.

From Jackson Hole to Cody, WY


July 28, 2011

Five in a Row . . .

We left our very nice Motel 6 room about 9:15 and headed right down the street for breakfast, and yes, once again at Bubba’s BBQ.

And that officially makes it four in a row.

After another great breakfast we were back on the road to Cody about 177 miles away by 10:30.

Unlike the last last few days, our trip today was pretty much wildlife-free, except for one pronghorn antelope and a lone bison. We did check out our moose-sighting sites from yesterday but found nothing.

I don’t know where everyone was going today, but the traffic through both parks was much heavier than our other trips through here over the last week.

Except for a couple of rest area stops, we drove straight through to Cody. arriving home about 2:30 pm.

But coming into Cody, we saw something we hadn’t noticed before.

There’s a Bubba’s BBQ here in Cody. We instantly made the decision to have dinner here tonight.

Getting back to the RV park, Jan was happy to find the cats and the rig doing OK. And after getting the truck unloaded and things put away, a nap was in order.

About 5:30 we headed out to Bubba’s BBQ to make it Five in a Row. Yes, when we find something good, we just run it into the ground.

Leaving the park I saw this Royal Classic Class C RV with a rear slide, something I’d never seen before. Don’t know what year this one is, but Google tells me that models as early as 1993 had them.

Neat!

Rear Slide

The Bubba’s here in Cody was almost, but not quite identical, to the one in Jackson. The biggest difference is that they don’t have breakfast at this one. Our waitress said they dropped it a couple of years ago because they weren’t making money on it.

Apparently, although they use mostly the same recipes, they have two different owners, but are not a franchise, either. I did think the BBQ Beans are better here in Cody, and they have bigger iced tea glasses, too.

Coming home, we took a detour to check out a Maverik gas station where we can fuel up the rig on our way out of town on Sunday. If I can I always like to plot out how to get in and out of the station, and where we can hook up when we’re done.

And of course, as usually happens, when I’m about ready to buy diesel, the price starts going up.

Tomorrow we’ve got some errands, and then dinner with Al and Adrienne. And supposedly there is a balloon festival here this weekend, but other places says it’s next weekend.

We’ll see.


July 28, 2013

Home at our Second Home . . .

The AM Clouds / PM Sun that was forecast for today must have been for somewhere else, because we had moderate to heavy rain for all but the last 50 miles of our trip down to Elkhart, IN.

After we were ready to travel this morning, all except for disconnecting shore power, we called the shuttle for a ride to the casino for the breakfast buffet. And of course afterwards, Jan had to check out the gift shop, and lo and behold, she found a shirt she just had to have. Who would have thunk it?

Getting back to the rig, we cranked up, brought the levelers up, unhooked shore power, pulled in the slide, and pulled out about 10am. And just as we got back on US-31, the light misting we had been getting turned into a heavy rain.

As I said the other day, traveling on US-31 the last couple of days means a lot to me, since further south it runs right through my family’s farm in North Alabama, and then all the way down to Mobile. Before I-65 was built, we traveled US-31 back and forth many times to visit relatives. So now, along with US-1, we can say we’ve been to both ends, the start just south of the Mackinac Bridge, and the end, of course, just outside Mobile, AL.

As far as US-1, we visited both ends in 2009 while traveling up the East Coast. The southern end is located in Key West, FL,

Key West US 1 Buoy

and the northern end, 2369 miles away in Fort Kent, MA.

us1 mile marker 0

Fort Kent is where we crossed back into Canada as we traveled west across the southern border through Quebec, Montreal, and Ottawa, before coming back into US and visiting Buffalo NY and Niagara Falls.

end001n_sign

Toward the end of our trip today, we passed through Benton Harbor. 30 or 40 years I would have tried to spend a week here. Benton Harbor was, at that time, the home of Heathkit.

Heathkit actually started in 1912 selling kit AIRPLANES. After several iterations, the new owner started selling electronic kits using WWII surplus radio parts. The company grew rapidly, selling amateur radio equipment, test gear, audio amps, and even color TV kits. During the 1970’s I actually built two of their 25” color TV’s, and they worked great.

Heathkit Color TV 1

Back in those days, when electronics equipment was being mostly assembled by hand, you could save a lot of money by building it yourself. But as the 80’s and 90’s progressed, and more and more electronics was built by automated equipment, the price savings disappeared and Heathkit gradually ground to a halt.

From the 60’s to the 80’s I probably built close to a hundred of their kits, from simple test meters and ham radio gear, to audio amps and the above-mentioned color TV’s. Steve Jobs cut his teeth on Heathkits, and is quoted as saying “It gave a tremendous level of self-confidence, that through exploration and learning one could understand seemingly very complex things in one’s environment”.

They will be missed.

We got into what Jan considers our second home, Elkhart Campground, about 3pm and was warmly greeted by Gita, the owner. We were surprised to see how full they were, busier than we’ve ever seen them before. We got parked and set up in a nice, long pull-thru site. Later we headed over to one of our favorite places here in Elkhart, El Maguey Mexican Restaurant.

Tomorrow, pretty much nothing, I hope.


July 28, 2014

You Know You’re Having A Bad Day . . .

When This Happens.

Maybe that’s why fire-engine ladder trucks have a guy back there steering.

I sent Brandi this photo the other day with the suggestion that this might be a good bed for Landon.

John Deere Frontloader 2

And I was basically told to mind my own business and don’t give him any ideas.

I was just trying to help!


About 5:15 we headed out for dinner. We had planned to try Rod’s Capricorn Inn on nearby Lake Cowan, but being Monday, Jan suggested I call to be sure they were open. Good thing too, because the phone just rang and rang.

So,instead, we decided to check out Mac D’s Pub, another place with good ratings on Yelp, and it turned out to be really good.

Mac D's Pub

Jan said her chicken salad sandwich was the best she’d had, and my Mac D’s Pub Burger was out of this world.

Mac D's Pub Burger

Yes, that’s a 1”  thick 12 oz. patty with pepper jack cheese, tomato, pickles, onions, and very crispy bacon, all on a toasted bun. I asked for it medium, and it was done perfectly. So, the food was great, and the service was great. It would have been just perfect . . . except for the rowdy librarians.

We hadn’t been there very long when the big table right behind us, set for 20 or more, started to fill up. At first we weren’t worried. They were all wearing bright green shirts that said, “OHIO STATE LIBRARY SUPPORT STAFF”.

So we thought Great!, they’re librarians. How loud could they be? They go around ‘shushing’ people all day, don’t they?

Well, apparently Mac D’s Pub is where they go to let out all their frustrations, and make up for lost time, volume, noise, whatever. And probably the numerous bottles of wine didn’t hurt either.

After our great dinner we made a Kroger’s stop for a few things before heading back to the park. Tomorrow we’re meeting a friend for lunch in Lebanon, before touring President Taft’s home in Cincinnati. Then, on the way back we plan on making a Sam’s Club stop for our prescriptions.


July 28, 2015

Now it’s Jan’s turn . . .

In yesterday’s blog, I ranked the 3 top-rated BBQ that we tried here in Memphis. The three were:

Charles Vergos’ Rendezvous

Jim and Nick’s BBQ

The Bar-B-Q Shop

I ranked them on 4 different dishes.

Ribs
Pulled Pork
Beans
Cole Slaw

I ranked them this way:

Ribs:

1. Rendezvous
2. Jim and Nick’s
3. The Bar-B-Q Shop

Pulled Pork:

1. Jim and Nick’s
2. Rendezvous
3. The Bar-B-Q Shop

Beans:

1. Rendezvous
2. Jim and Nick’s
3. The Bar-B-Q Shop

Slaw:

1. Jim and Nick’s
2. The Bar-B-Q Shop
3. Rendezvous

* * * * *

Jan’s BBQ list went like this.

Ribs

1. The Bar-B-Q Shop
2. Rendezvous
3. Jan didn’t have the ribs at Jim and Nick’s

Pulled Pork

1. Jim and Nick’s
2. Jan only had the Pulled Pork at Jim and Nick’s
3.

Beans:

1. Rendezvous
2. The Bar-B-Q Shop
3. Jan didn’t have the ribs at Jim and Nick’s

Slaw:

1. Jim and Nick’s
2. The Bar-B-Q Shop
3. Rendezvous

So Jan and I completely disagree on the Ribs, mostly agree on the Pulled Pork, mostly agree on the Beans, and completely agree on the Slaw.

Not bad. More agreement than we have on a lot of things.

And just to top it off, we’re going back to Rendezvous one last time on Thursday.

* * * * *

Despite telling me they were going to take the site next to us out of service since our front AC was plugged into that pedestal, the park put somebody there last night.

This morning when I got up I noticed that the front AC, the one on my breakout connection, didn’t seem to be operating. So I headed outside to check the breaker on the 30 amp pedestal behind our next door neighbors who were gone for the day.

As I suspected, the breaker was popped, and with this serial breaker hookup, not only was our front AC off, but their rig had lost all power. To forestall this happening again, I unplugged my extension cord, flipped the breaker back on, and then dragged my cord over to the unoccupied pedestal on the other side of us. At least I hope it stays unoccupied until we leave Sunday morning.

Though, actually I think I can reach the pedestal one more site over.  I hope.

For dinner tonight, Jan whipped up another version of her Taco Salad, but this time used a can of Gold Star Cincinnati Chili, instead of taco meat. Really good, and a nice variation.

Plus, it used up the last of the salad greens.


July 28, 2016

Not Again . . .

For the 4th time since we started full-timing in 2008, and became South Dakota residents, Harris County, Texas has sent me a jury summons.

So I guess for the 4th time, I’ll have to contact the Court and explain to them once again, that although we still own a house in Harris County, we haven’t lived here in 8 years.

Now in the past, I’ve never tried to get out of jury duty, well except the time it come up in the middle of a Shuttle mission, and in fact over the years I think I’ve ended up on 4 or 5 juries out of maybe 8 to 10 times I’ve been called.

In Harris County,  unlike a lot of places, they just get one shot at you. You’ll called in on a certain date, and if you don’t get picked for a jury, you’re done.

You’re called in for either the morning session (8am) or the afternoon session (1pm). Afternoons are better because to get there by 8am,you need to leave  the Clear Lake area by about 5:30 if you want to find a parking space anywhere near the Courthouse. And as you all know, I’m not really a happy early riser.

But I have been on some interesting cases – a crack house murder (12 – 0 guilty), a cocaine possession (11 –1 innocent/mistrial), and a civil suit against an apartment complex whose hot water was supposedly so hot, it burned a baby being bathed in a bathroom lavatory.

This was a interesting case due to the particulars. A family was suing because they said a 6 month old baby received 2nd degree burns when the hot water was turned on in the lavatory where he was being bathed, and instantly scalded.

The defense produced pages of complaints from people about lukewarm hot water in this apartment building because it was at the far end from the central water heater system.

And as far as the burns, the baby  had burns on his lower back, bottom, and the back of his thighs. Not on his stomach, crotch, or upper thighs like if he were burned from the faucet being turned on while he was in the lavatory.

During the course of the trial, it was discovered that the baby’s 12 year old cousin who was bathing him with no adults in the home, had just put water in the lavatory and set the baby in. Then she went off to watch TV for 30 to 45 minutes. The cousin said the baby was crying, but he always cried, so she didn’t pay any attention.

As it turns out a baby can get 2nd degree burns after 30 minutes in 105° water, cooler than most people would find comfortable. Another thing that was really telling was the fact that if you folded the baby up like you were sitting him in a small lavatory, the burn mark was a straight line across his body, following the water level in the sink.

I was the foreman on this trial, as I have been on several others. And what I normally do, if everyone is agreeable, is to ask for a show of hands, guilty or not guilty. Then if we don’t have a consensus,  we start talking it over, going around the table, letting each juror have their say, hashing it out back and forth until we all agree, or don’t as the case may be.

And in this case, like the crack house murder, we all agreed on the first vote. (12 – 0 for the defendant).

And as with the murder, it took us longer to fill out all the paperwork and for everyone to sign off on it, than it did to decide the case.

Tomorrow we’re going to Katy to have dinner with Brandi, et. al. and pick up our Amazon stuff. Then on our way home we’ll stop at the Wal-Mart in Sealy for our prescriptions we called in today, and a few other things.


July 28, 2017

Our Montgomery Home . . .

We only had about 190 miles to go this morning so we took our time and didn’t leave the park until about 10am.

Out on I-10 in just a few minutes, we turned north on I-65 a few minutes later. Then it was pretty much just a straight run until we got off a little north of downtown Montgomery, and pulled into the Capitol City RV Park about 2pm.

We stayed here during our last visit in 2010, and it ‘s a nice park to come back to.

This was a very nice trip, very smooth, with no problems, traffic or rig. The generator and the AC’s kept us nice and cool again, so I think my AC airflow problem is solved.

A little before 4pm we headed over to the home of our long-time friends Fred and Susan Springall. Fred and I worked together in the mid-70’s when we were both with Storer Cable, which later became TCI, which later became 3 or 4 other companies along the way.

Susan fixed us a delicious dinner of lasagna, and salad, and home-made pound cake with fresh strawberries and ice cream. Really good.

Fred Susan Springall Jan

The last time we visited with Fred and Susan was in 2010, and as Jan remarked on on the way home, it was like we had just seen them last week. We all just sat down and started talking, seeming to pick up right where we left off last time.

We lived here in Montgomery for about 4 years before we moved to Houston, buying our first home while we were here. So tomorrow we want to drive around a bit, and check out some old haunts.

Then tomorrow afternoon we meeting up with one of Jan’s former hospital coworkers who lives up in Prattville, a little north of Montgomery.

Looking forward to it.


July 28, 2019

It’s Drying Time Again . . .

After I got coffeenated this morning, I pulled the washer back out  and popped the top lid. I had figured it would be a quick and easy replacement/fix, but it turned out to be a little more involved. Much like most repairs.

Washer Dryer Blower Motor - New

I inserted the motor/squirrel cage fan assembly down into the housing and tightened it down using the 3 screws. Then turning on the power, I started the dryer.

And nothing.

Well, the drum started turning, but the fan motor didn’t. And when I tried to turn it by hand, it wouldn’t budge.

Well, it was working when I installed it.

So I loosen the mounting screws and tried it again. And it would now turn, but it was scraping inside. A couple of more turns and it was spinning free.

So I removed the assembly and compared it with the old one. And despite having the same part #, the new one was slightly deeper than the old one, so the fan was rubbing against the inside of the housing.

But a couple of shims took care that problem.

Cranking it up again and letting it marinate for a few minutes, I felt the washer door and it was hot. But before I buttoned it up, I went ahead and replaced the Thermal Overheat Fuse since they usually only last a couple of years.

Ten minutes later it was all back together, back in the cabinet, and doing a load.

It’s Drying Time Again.

Jan will be happy.

Lowell has been sending over some photos of the great time they’re having down in Costa Rica.

Costa Rica Trip 1

Looks like Landon has the right idea.

Costa Rica Trip 2 H

Costa Rica Trip 3

Costa Rica Trip 4

Costa Rica Trip 5

Costa Rica Trip 6

Looks like fun!


July 28, 2020

Cutting The Cord, Almost . . .

Probably in the next couple of days, after Jan gets home from Brandi’s, we’re going to shut down, or at least, suspend our DirecTV account. It will be the first time since sometime in 1997 that we won’t be using DirecTV’s service.

But DTV keeps raising their cost, now up to a little over $190 a month. And we don’t have any premium movie or sports channels.

But we’ve found that YouTubeTV is a very suitable replacement, at $65, it’s 1/3 the price. We have added about $25 of other services, like CuriosityStream, CBSAllAccess, and Acorn to round out our menu.

Even better, we’re getting everything in HD, which we didn’t on DTV since our Winegard Dome wouldn’t support it.

Today I went to pull up something from our Saved area in Facebook, but couldn’t find it. There was no listing for Saved under the menu area. So I did a little Googling and nothing directly related popped up, but I did find that your Facebook Saved  area is located at Facebook.com/Saved so I typed that in and WAHLA, all our Saved stuff came up. And when I then went back to the menu area, Saved was once again in the list.


Thought for the Day:

I Saw That – Karma

(That fate thing. Not our cat.)

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