Daily Archives: August 4, 2022

Close Enough . . .

Well Jan is now the proud owner of a Samsung Galaxy Chromebook Go, or at least she will be as soon as it’s delivered tomorrow.

Samsung Chromebook

This is actually the same one that my client’s wife has, but minus the LTE phone connection. Instead it just has a WiFi 6 connection, which saved us anywhere from $130 to $220 extra, depending on whether you want an AT&T or a Verizon hookup. And of course you’ve still got the monthly cellphone bill.

I’m not sure what the big price jump is all about, since the phone  is only a single chip that costs about $20-25.

I also ordered a 64GB microSD card for some added memory in it.

And of course, she also needs a neat new bag to carry it in.

Originally we had ordered this one for her.

Chromebook Flamingo Bag

But after we ordered it, we found that this particular one is not available in a 14” width, so we cancelled that order and we ended up with this one, kind of a take-off on Van Gogh’s Almond Blossoms, but supposedly it’s Apricot Blossoms.

Chromebook Blossoms Bag

Close enough.

And it will all be here in time for Jan to take with her up to Brandi’s on Sunday. She’s going to be doing a week of Landon-sitting from this Sunday to next Friday. Then I’ll pick her up and we’ll come back down to Alvin for this month’s Alvin Opry performance.

Brandi has to be in the office next week, and Landon doesn’t start back to school until week after next, on the 17th.

We had planned to have lunch at Twin Peaks this afternoon, but when we texted Sylvia, our regular server, she said she wasn’t working today. So we told her we’d catch her next time.

So we were off to Yummy Yummy’s instead.

Always good.

Leaving Yummy’s we came back up FM1764 to Joe’s Country Store to look at some big Wind Spinners that they had on display out front. They weren’t here a couple of weeks ago when we came by, and we’ve been looking for one for a while.

Ended up with one like this 24” one, but with a different paint scheme.

Wind Spinner

I wasn’t able to get it installed this afternoon because we’ve been so long without rain I couldn’t get the pole stuck in the ground. So on to my next idea.

Then it was on up the Interstate to our local WalMart for a few things before heading for the day.

Thought for the Day:

“There is a theory which states that if ever anybody discovers exactly what the Universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened.” – Douglas Adams.

August 4, 2010

Rainy Day Monda…eh…Tues…eh, Wednesday, too…

Well this morning got off to an exciting start!

Jan got up about 8, but I was awakened about 9:30 by heavy rain, high winds, thunder, and a very loud roaring sound. Coming out of a sound sleep, my first thought was “tornado!”

Turns out it wasn’t a tornado, but merely the high winds making the awnings rumble like a base drum. I put on some shorts and ran out in the rain to put the awnings up so they wouldn’t be damaged. I saw that the wind had also sent the satellite dish on a nosedive.

For the next couple of hours we rode out a lot of rain and lightning. But by 11:30 it had slacked off enough for us to head out for lunch.

We ended up at Bob Evans for lunch. Jan had a soup and sandwich platter, and I had breakfast. Bob Evans is a chain that we were introduced us to last year and we always really enjoy it.

Coming home, we dropped some clothes off at the Goodwill store and got back to the rig just in time for the sun to come out. At least for a while.

I put out the awnings and set the satellite dish back up. Just in time for it to start sprinkling again. Oh well.

On a completely different rant, I finally got a chance to find out about the toll roads around here, and in the Northeast, in general.

In Texas we have toll roads, but they’re built as toll roads and are not Interstates. But up here some Interstates ARE toll roads. For example I-70 / I-80 that runs across upper Ohio, Indiana, and Illinois is a toll road.

So I know that the Interstate system was built using Federal funds from US taxpayers, so why are some states now charging us to drive on roads we’ve already paid for. But it turns out to be fairly simple, and not the ripoff I had thought. Or at least, less of a ripoff.

The thing is, the toll roads were here first. They were already in existence when they started building the Interstate System in the late 50’s. So if they built the new Interstates along side the toll roads, then the no one would use the toll roads and the bondholders would go broke. If they used the Interstate Highway funds to buy out the toll roads to make them free, then that left less money to build the rest of the Interstate System. So they just decided to leave things as they were.

So now, about 2900 of the 46,000+ miles in the Interstate are toll roads. For more info, check Toll Road History.

After more rain during the afternoon, about 6 we drove over to the  Lakeshore Grill on Simonton Lake. They have good food and a great view of the lake.

LakeShoreGrill 1

We got back to the rig a little after 7, just in time for more rain. But tomorrow is supposed to be bright and sunny. We’ll see.

Tomorrow we’re going to take a day trip down to Logansport, IN, about 90 miles away. Jan lived there when she was about 8 years old, and she wants to check the place out.

August 4, 2011

Far to go to Fargo . . .

Because we had almost 300 miles to go this morning, and also because we would lose an hour crossing into Central Time Zone, we got an earlier than usual start at 8 am (9 CDT).

We were parked in a long pull-thru site, so I hooked up the toad last night and then all we had to do was unhook the power, raise the levelers, and go.

It was cool enough and cloudy enough on the trip that we didn’t have to start the generator for the AC’s until about 45 minutes before we got to Fargo.

The only RV park we could find in the area was at the Red River Valley Fairgrounds, but they don’t take reservations, so about 30 minutes out I called and was told they probably would have room.

We pulled into the fairgrounds a little before 3 and spent about 15 minutes getting parked and set up.

This is one of those weird parks where the RV’s park butt to butt, but even then it’s hard to tell which side to get your utilities from. We decided to only hook up power, but at least it was 50 amp.

We didn’t even try to hook up the water and sewer, because with the water faucet at the very front of the site, and the sewer connection at the very back, I just didn’t have enough hose. And on top of that, I had to pulled the power cord under the rig to reach the nearest electrical box anyway.

But it’s cheap at $20 a night and it’s level, so no harm, no foul.

About 4:30 we headed out to have dinner at Famous Dave’s BBQ. We haven’t eaten there since Las Vegas in May, so we were really ready for our Famous Dave’s fix. And it was so good that for the first time, we had no leftovers.

But we did get a Bread Pudding to split later at home.  YUMMM!

Tomorrow we’re heading out for the Minneapolis – St. Paul area. Hopefully we’ll be able to find a site at the Mapleton Moose Lodge. I’ll call tomorrow morning to find out.

August 4, 2014

Back with Family . . .

After a nice quiet night at the Singing Hills RV Park near Mammoth Cave, KY, we headed out a little before 10 on our way to Athens, AL about 190 miles away. On our way out of the park we stopped off to tell the owner how much we liked this hidden gem of a park.

Getting back on I-65S we passed something that had given us a start as we turned the corner leaving the Interstate as we arrived yesterday. Not really something you expect to see turning a corner off the Interstate.

Dinosaur World 1

Turns out it was an advertisement for Dinosaur World right down the road. I’ll bet Landon would really love this place.

Dinosaur World 2

Heck, I’d really love it!

Heading south, we passed along the east side of Bowling Green before making a pit stop about an hour later at the Tennessee border.

The most direct route on I-65S takes you though downtown Nashville and usually isn’t a problem but I checked my new favorite app, Sigalert to be sure.

Available for both Android and iPhone, Sigalert lets you see traffic conditions in any city big enough to have a traffic camera system. I’ve had the separate one for Houston for several years, but Sigalert allows you to have one app and just select what city you want to look at.

Nashville Traffic Screenshot

The little camera icons let you look at the live traffic camera in that location. They also have a web-based version at www.Sigalert.com. Check it out.

So seeing all green in Nashville, we took the shortest route through downtown. The only disconcerting problem was the fact that they seemed to have renumbered their exits since the last time we were through here. My Delorme Street Atlas was telling me to take exit 83AB to stay on I-65, but the signs were calling it exit 50A. Same exit, just a different number now.

After a really smooth day, we pulled into Northgate RV Park here in Athens, AL about 1:30, greeted my nephew Wes, and then got parked and set up. It’s nice to have an RV park in the family.

Jan has been suffering from sinus/allergy problems the last couple of days, so she slept most of the trip today, and then took a nap later in the afternoon. By 5 or so she was feeling better so we headed for dinner at one of our favorite local places, Catfish Cabin.

We come here at least once whenever we’re in town and it’s always great. Jan got the Cabin Dinner with a whole fried catfish, 3 fried shrimp, and 3 fried oysters. I got my usual Combination Platter that looked like this.

Catfish Cabin Seafood Platter

And besides the great seafood, they make their own coleslaw, hushpuppies, tartar sauce, and cocktail sauce from scratch. Really good, especially the hushpuppies.

And for extra service, when we asked for small take-home container for the 4 hushpuppies we had left, our waitress Michele brought us a larger take-home container and another dozen hushpuppies to go with it. Now that’s southern hospitality!

Coming back to the park we stopped off at my Aunt and Uncle’s house to say ‘HI’, but I’ll save all of that for tomorrow.

August 4, 2015

All He Wants For . . .

I spent some time this morning looking at my water heater problem some more. We have an Attwood 10 gallon LP/Electric model that has never given us any problems, except for a leaky T&P valve, in the 8 years we owned the coach. I flush it out every winter and it just works.

We’ve used it on LP maybe a dozen times since we bought the rig, usually one night a at time when we’re boondocking, which we don’t do very often. But because of the bad power at our last park, we used it for almost two weeks straight, again with no problems. But when we tried to switch back to electric when we got here on Sunday, zip, zero, nada hot water. So we’re back on LP while I track down the problem.

One thing we noticed is that when the water heater is running on LP, the water is MUCH hotter than when it’s on electric. So the possibility I’m looking at is that maybe the extremely hot water popped the ECO (Energy Cut Off) on the electric side. The ECO is essentially an Over Temp switch which opens like a circuit breaker when the water gets too hot.

It is resettable, but it’s located on the back side of the water heater. To get to it, I’ll have to open up the panel underneath the wardrobe in the bathroom. That’s also where the AC power comes in so I can check that too.

* * * * *

A little after 2pm Jan and I drove over to Huntsville for lunch at Rosie’s Cantina, our favorite area Mexican place. It’s just about as good as any place in Texas, and well worth a stop.

Rosie's Cantina 1

Jan got the Chile Relleno, which to her delight, was stuffed with ground beef, rather than the normal cheese.

Rosie's Cantina 3

Said it was one of the best she’s had.

I went with the Mexican Flag Enchiladas, which were also really good.

Rosie's Cantina 2

It was made up of a Beef Enchilada covered in Ranchero Sauce, a Chicken Enchilada covered in Tomatillo Sauce, and a Cheese Enchilada topped with Sour Cream. Very, very tasty.

If you’re in the Huntsville, AL area, Rosie’s is well worth your taste buds to stop.

* * * * *

Brandi and Lowell are in Costa Rica this week. Brandi’s BFF, Shawna and her husband Jason, wanted to renew their wedding vows on their 20th anniversary. So she rented a big house in Costa Rica for the week, and flew a large group of family and friends down there to help celebrate.

These are views from the house.

Costa Rica View

Costa Rica View2

And apparently the place comes with built-in pets.

Costa Rica 3

Landon stayed at home with Lowell’s parents and his Aunt Sherry.

Landon with Sonja

Sonja, Landon’s grandmother, texted me yesterday saying that she and Landon were playing Angry Birds on his iPad, and he told her he didn’t want to play with her anymore because she wasn’t as good at it as his Papa with the truck house. (That‘s his name for our RV.)

That’s my boy!

Then this evening we got this photo.

Landon last two teeth today

Looks like he lost his first two teeth.

I guess we now know what Landon wants for Christmas.

August 4, 2016 Uncategorized

I Think I Just Sold My First Born Male Child . . .

Yesterday’s light rains became all night and all morning thunderboomers, enough to occasionally shake the entire coach.

And it looks like there’s more on the way tomorrow. In fact, The Weather Channel says we’re looking at Scattered Thunderstorms for the rest of our time here.

But it did keep it cooler

About 2:30 we headed into Foley to have ‘lupper’ at one of our all-time favorites, Lambert’s Throwed Rolls. We’ve eaten here for years, even before we started RV’ing in 2007, and it’s always worth the wait. And there’s always a wait.

Sometimes it’s only 10 minutes, while today was about 30. But we have waited as long as two hours when we were here with the whole family. There are not many places we’d wait this long, Lulu’s here in Gulf Shores, Salt Lick BBQ, near Austin, and maybe a couple of others.

While we were waiting, I checked my Galaxy Tab 4 for a Wi-Fi signal and found an open signal at the Ford dealership right  next door. And like many open signals from businesses, there’s a disclaimer agreement you have to acknowledge before they will let you online. But I’ve never seen one like this.

Moyer Ford WiFi Disclaimer

It’s a page and a half of dense legalese, pretty much unreadable. But of course, I accepted it and went online. But I’m not sure if we still have a son.  Or maybe I don’t have a soul anymore. I don’t know.

Getting seated, Jeff, our waiter showed up, and before he could ask what we wanted to to drink, I told him, “two unsweet iced teas”. He blinked a couple of times and said, “That’s not how this works. I ask you what you want to drink, and THEN you tell me, not the other way around.”

Jan and I both laughed, and Jan said, “OK, you start.”

“Hi, welcome to Lambert’s. My name is Jeff, and I’ll be your waiter today. What can I get you to drink?” And after I told him again. he smiled and said, “See how much better that works.”

Lambert's 1

Jan always gets the Fried Chicken with Mashed Potatoes,

Lambert's 3

while this time I went with the BBQ Pork Steak with Turnip Greens, White Beans and Ham, and Green Beans.

Lambert's BBQ Pork Steak

And of course the PassArounds, like Fried Okra,

Lambert's Fried Okra

Fried Potatoes and Onions, Black-eyed Peas, and 3 or 4 more choices. If you don’t know about PassArounds, servers walk around with big bowls full of food and ladle out as much as you want. This all in addition to the sides that come with your meal. As usual everything was really delicious.

And because of the PassArounds, we ended up bring home more leftovers than we ate to start with.

And it’s a great deal too. My big pork steak with 3 sides was only $13. And Jan’s All White Meat Chicken with two big pieces and two sides was only $14. Nice. Especially since we’ll get a whole ‘nuther meal out of it.

And of course there are the rolls. And yes, they do throw them.


The size of soft balls, they come arcing across the dining room, 20 or 30 feet sometimes. And if you miss, another one is right behind it. And you’ll probably want to drop it quick, because they’re always hot out of the oven.

There is a place north of Houston called the Potatoe Patch that advertises ‘throw’d’ rolls, but when we ate there this past January, we found that they were more like ‘tossed’. Usually only a couple of feet.

When I mentioned this in the blog, one of readers, Joan said she used to be the Insurance Underwriter for Lambert’s and that they had seen a fair share of lawsuits from their ‘throwed rolls’. It’s really hard to believe that someone could  be injured by a soft, fluffy yeast roll.

A few years back, I think it was the Sikeston, MO Lambert’s location, I saw a roll come arcing overhead, right through the hands of the father, and hit a young boy in a highchair right in the face with a soft ‘plop’. The kid who also had his hands up trying to catch it, just laughed and picked up the roll from his tray and started eating it.

I think some people just want to sue.

August 4, 2017

I Tried To Tell Her . . .

We pulled out of the Northgate RV Travel Park here in Athens, AL about 10am this morning on our way to Meridian MS, about 240 miles away.

But our first stop was about 3 miles down US31S to the Marathon station to fill up for the trip home.

Coming up from Houston, we did 940 miles and used 110 gallons, giving us a little over 8.5 mpg. Very good considering all the hills starting south of Birmingham and continuing on up this way. Of course this doesn’t count the generator usage.

The whole time we’ve been here, the Marathon diesel price has been $2.299/gallon, the same as all the other stations in the area.. But then yesterday it suddenly jumped up to $2.399, with everyone else staying  at $2.299.


But even at 10 cents more a gallon, it right on the way to I-65, has separate diesel pumps off to the side for easy in and out, and plenty of room to hook up the toad when we’re done, so it’s hard to resist.

These are the old mechanical kind of pumps, but they look in good shape, having just been inspected this past May.. But I noticed as the little wheels were flying around that something didn’t add up. It looked like it was undercharging me, but the pump was so fast that the totals were kind of a blur.

And when I got finished, here’s what I had.

Marathon Diesel Pump

I had gone inside before I pumped to give her my credit card and have her turn the pump on. And when I went back inside I told her it didn’t seem like it was charging me the correct amount. But she said it was all done by computer and had to be correct. I again told her that it seemed to be undercharging  me. A little snippy this time, she said, “Oh no. It’s correct’. So I dropped it.

And the amount she charged me, $305.87, matched what I had on the pump so I didn’t  ‘annoy’ her any further with it.

But later this evening when we got settled in here at the park in Meridian, I took another look at the receipt, and I was right.

Marathon Sales Ticket

According to the receipt I paid $305.87 for 133.045 gallons at $2.299 a gallon, NOT $305.87 for 129.5 gallons at  $2.399 a gallon like the pump said.

I figure that with these pumps being mechanical, someone adjusted the price at the pump, but not in the computer. So actually I got a little over 3.5 gallons free.


And I did  try to tell her.

It’s been a long day, what with 25 miles of bumper to bumper 2 miles an hour construction on I-20/59 in MS, so I’ll finish up tomorrow.

August 4, 2018

An Oldie, But A Goodie . . .

and No, not me.

A nice, quiet morning with my Sweetie, my first one in awhile. And tomorrow will be our last one for a week. Brandi, Lowell,  and Landon are coming back down tomorrow to pick up Jan for another week of Landon-sitting. So it’ll be just Karma and me again.

This was Jan’s first time to try the Café Du Monde coffee. Well, at least since New Orleans.

I combined it by using two scoops of our Crème Brûlée flavor to one scoop of the Café Du Monde. This did work to cut some of the ‘bite’ from the Du Monde. But it lost some of the great flavor. So tomorrow I’ll try 1-1/2 scoops and 1-1/2 scoops and see that works.

We spent some more time talking over our European River Cruise plans. We’ve got some excellent advice from several of our readers that’s helped a lot.

And my Sweetie came up with a great idea.

Right now the cruise we’re looking at, runs from Budapest, Hungry to Amsterdam, The Netherlands along the Danube River. It covers 15 days, 4 countries, and includes 12 guided tours.

Jan suggested we then take the train from Amsterdam to Paris rather than fly. It’s only about a 4 hour trip, but we could see more of the countryside. Then after three or four days in Paris, seeing Versailles, and as much of the Louvre as we can see in a day or so, we take the Chunnel train to London, again about a 4 hour trip, and spend our last 4 days or so there before flying home. So we’re probably looking at about 3+ weeks in total.

I doubt seriously we’ll make another trip over there, so we at least want to hit some of the highlights.

Later in the morning I put in call to our storage room place to see about getting another 5’ x 5’ unit, hopefully close to our other one, but no one ever answered the phone. I’ll try again later.

We headed out about 1pm, first for breakfast/lunch at the Victory Lakes Denny’s once again. One of our favorites. Then it was on up I-45 to make a return at Lowe’s. Last week I had bought a multi-conductor cable to connect up my new Digital Voltage/Amp Meter.

Digital Power Meter

As I mentioned before, I’m going to hook up two of them on the output of our transfer switch so I can monitor the power coming into the coach. But what I had picked out just was not going to work. So back it went.

Our next stop was at the house to leave a set of keys for the buyer. I hid them out front  and then called him to let him know where to find them. Guess he wants to get his contractor in again to start making some more detailed plans.

Then it was a stop at WalMart for a few things, and also to make a return. A couple of weeks ago I bought a can of Killz spray paint to cover up an old water stain on the ceiling of the house. The leak had been repaired long ago but I wanted to cover up the stain. But the guy bought the house before I could take care of it. So I wanted to return the can.

I didn’t take time to dig out the receipt since if you have your cellphone and you use the WalMart Savings Catcher system, every receipt is detailed in your online account. Or if you know what credit card you used to buy an item, they also have everything you’ve ever purchased from them in their system.

Nice, convenient . . . and kind of scary.

Tonight I was ordering some stuff from Amazon and I decided to scroll down through my Wish List to see if anything caught my eye from the past.

And something did. An oldie, but a goodie.

It was all 4 seasons of Airwolf on DVD – for only $19.42. One of our favorite shows back in the 80’s.

Airwolf DVD

As one reviewer said, “2 great seasons, 1 good season, and 1 awful season.”  But well worth $20.

So just only watch the first 3 seasons.

August 4, 2019

Bringing My Baby Back Home . .

First up, my Baby is back home. I got to Brandi’s about 1pm, with Brandi, Lowell, and Landon getting in from their flight about 2, all with great Costa Rican tans.

And after getting our hugs, Jan and I headed for home, with a couple of stops along the way. The first being the Saltgrass Steakhouse in Webster.

We had sour usual great meal of Wedge Salads, Steaks, and Green Beans. Always delicious, especially the Wedge Salad, which is actually why we come here instead of Longhorn Steakhouse.

Saltgrass Wedge Salad 2

Then we made an HEB stop at the FM646 location so Jan could stock up for her lunches for the next couple of days, and after that it was finally home.

Next a project update:

The Splendide dryer is still drying. Hopefully the replacement heater blower motor will work for another 20 years like the first one did. Otherwise I’ll have to kludge something like I did when the water pump went out and no replacements were available.

If you want to check out the long-running saga on the washer water pump kludge, you can find it here:









The shower leak repair is still not leaking, so that’s good. One of our blog readers mentioned using a water leak detector and another reader wanted to know what kind it was?

Since I’ve only had two leaks in the rig in 12 years, I haven’t  thought about it. So far my leak detector had been the squishy wet carpet at the bottom of the bed. But we’ll see how it goes.

I also completed the install and setup oft new OTA antenna for all the local channels. It’s amazing some of the old shows that can be found there. Shows like Annie Oakley, Buffalo Bill, Jr., Jim Bowie, and many others, all shows from the 1950’s.

And also later shows like Coach, Wings, Kojak, and Ironsides.

Now I just need to go through the channel list on the TV guide and eliminate all the ones we don’t want, and that just clutter up the listings.

August 4, 2021

Just Replace ‘Em All . . .

This morning as I was going into work, about 10 minutes after I left the rig, my Jeep started idling rough, and then stumbled as I pulled away from a traffic light.

And it was quickly evident that this was a reoccurrence of the same problem that I had about a month ago. So after I limped into work, I checked the Error Codes using the Torque Lite app on my phone. And this time I was getting the same P0304 and P0305 I had last time, as well as a new one, P0303.

Now last time I swapped out #3 and #5 with no change,  and the problem turned out to be #4. Now, these engines are known for ‘ghosting’ between cylinders on the error codes, so it looks like it’s doing it again.

The cylinders are arranged like this,

Jeep Engine Layout

So this time I’m just going to replace all 6 of the ignitor coils, including the one that was just replaced a month ago. That way I’ll have matched set. So on the way home I stopped off at the O’Reilly’s here in Santa Fe to pick up the ones that I had called in and ordered this morning.

Tomorrow morning I’ll replace #’’s 1, 3, 5 and see what that does. Hopefully that will fix the immediate problem. If it does I’ll wait until this weekend to do #2, 4, 6 since those are harder to get to, which is the same reason I didn’t check them last time. A bunch of stuff like air cleaner, air intake, radiator fluid reservoir, etc., have to be removed to get to the even side coils.

Thought for the Day:

If history teaches us anything it’s that history rarely teaches us anything.