Daily Archives: August 22, 2022

Doing Stupid Things . . .

I spent most of today at work watching YouTube videos. But not the fun ones, like cats or kids doing stupid things.

Turns out that the company in Poland likes my faceplate design,

BioMak Faceplate 3

but they want it done as an Adobe Illustrator vector graphic .ai file

Which basically means that the graphic can be resized larger or smaller with no loss of resolution, unlike what happens when you do it with a .jpg file.

The problem is that I haven’t worked with Illustrator since I left the University Of Houston-Clear Lake (UHCL) at the end of 2007 before we started RV’ing. And according to Adobe I’m only 32 revisions/upgrade behind.

So I started looking at YouTube tutorials on the 2022 version of Illustrator. And found I was really lost.

The control interface looks absolutely nothing like it did in CS3, the last version I worked with.

I mean it has the same functions, but they’re in completely new places on the menu, and in some cases they’re called completely different names.

But actually my design is pretty simple, so it shouldn’t take long for me to come up to speed.

I did find this 3+ hour video tutorial that seems to cover things very well.


Jan and I have our Snake Farm/San Antonio hotel reservations make for our upcoming October weekend. Chris and Linda, and Piper and Derek are staying at one hotel, and Brandi, Lowell, and Landon, and Jan and I are staying at another, both along the Riverwalk.

Really looking forward to having us all back together again.

Jan and I finally got around to mounting our new wind spinner yesterday evening, and it really looks good.

Check it out.

I’m really impressed on how little wind it takes to get it spinning. Because of the way the two sets of blades are set, the two wheels turn in opposite directions.

Really nice.

Of course we’ve had this one up for a while.

Also nice.

Tomorrow it’s Texas Huddle, Home Depot, WalMart, and probably Costco.

We’ll see.

Thought for the Day:

When I first went to work at age 13 my tax return consisted of a single IBM data card with the instructions on one side and a few lines to fill out on the other side. Each year since then Congress has simplified it into 35,000 pages.

Still In Bangor, ME

August 22, 2009

Bean Hole Beans…

Today was pretty much another do-nothing day.

I did take time to replace the windshield wipers on the coach with cheaper ones.  The reason for this was that the expensive ones I put on back in February before we left Houston, really weren’t doing a very good job.  This was because they had such a curve in them they wouldn’t stay pressed against the windshield very well.

The new ones from Sam’s work great.

This evening we attended a Maine Bean Hole Bean Dinner here at the RV park.  It was basically grilled hot dogs, baked beans, Cole slaw, and bread.  The term ‘bean hole beans’ comes from a New England tradition where the beans were cooked in a large cast iron pot in the ground.

The beans they use up here are a little different than what we’re used to.  They’re called yellow-eye beans.  They’re related to kidney beans, but ivory colored with a mustard-colored eye, kind of like a black-eye pea, but larger.

Maine Yellow Eye Beans

We had a good time talking with the other RV’ers, especially a group that had recently been to Nova Scotia and Newfoundland on an RV caravan.

An RV caravan is a group of travelers traveling together from one destination to the next. These tours can be professionally organized by a caravanning company, or informal – a small or large group of friends traveling together from place to place.

We’re going to try to pick the Wagonmaster’s (think Wagon Train) brain a little bit for the best places to stay and see.

Tomorrow we’re going to move to another site for a couple of days.  The site we’re at doesn’t have sewer so we can’t do laundry, so we’re moving over there for a couple of days before we leave for Houlton, the last town in Maine before we enter Canada.

We’re kind of waiting to see what Hurricane Bill is going to do since it’s supposedly heading for Nova Scotia/Newfoundland.

Tomorrow, while we’re moving to our new site, I plan on topping off our propane tank. The last time we filled it up was in Whitehorse, BC in Canada last year on our way back from Alaska..

In the summer time, the only thing we used propane for is for the refrigerator when we’re traveling, and for hot water when we’re boondocking.  When we’re plugged in to shore power, we use the electric water heater. So the 40 gallons can last a long time.

However, we should start running into colder weather soon and we do use the propane for our two coach heaters.  We also have two small electric heaters that we use until it gets really cold.

Last year on our way to Alaska, the coldest temp we ran into was 6 degrees in Garrison, MT, and the heaters had to run almost constantly.

So we’ll top off now before we get into Canada.

And after we move tomorrow, we’re planning on going to see the Harry Potter movie.

After that, we’ll see…

Still In Elkhart, IN

August 22, 2010

Work, Work, Work

Today was mostly a work around the rig day.

There’s always a lot of little things that need to done around here. So I added antifreeze to both the truck and the rig, added oil to the rig engine, topped off the coach batteries, and several other things.

I had planned to add some Freon to the dash A/C, but after some confusion about the the connectors, I decided to wait until tomorrow when I could check with American Coach.

I’ll try again tomorrow.

I thought this was interesting. I took this photo yesterday down in Goshen out in front of Menard’s. Note the handy garbage can and shovel on the far right.

Menards Amish

We decided to try a new Mexican restaurant,  but it wasn’t quite as good as our favorite El Maguey, but it was good. And it does have the advantage of being closer.

Horseshoe Lakes Thousand Trails Near Terre Haute, IN

August 22, 2011

Jan Says She’s Giddy . . .

Today will be the first time we’ve left the park since we got here last Wednesday.

Jan says she’s giddy.

But we both agreed we’ve really enjoyed the peace and quiet here.

After getting up and having coffee about 8:30, we headed out about 10. Our first stop was the Blanford Post Office to check on my mail, but none has shown up yet. I’ll check back tomorrow.

Then we headed south about 20 miles to Terre Haute and Fantastic Sam’s so Jan could get her hair done. But, as it turned out, even thought it was listed on the Fantastic Sam’s website, the place was out of business. So we decided to just head on down further south to the Wal-Mart SuperCenter and get her hair done there.

And while she was there, I stopped off at a nearby Lowe’s and Tractor Supply Store for some parts.

Finishing her haircut, and since this Wal-Mart didn’t have a nail salon, we drove up the road a piece to a Le Nails that we’d passed on the way in. I spent the time across the street at a Starbuck’s nursing a Cinnamon Dolce Latte and reading my Kindle.

As soon as she was finished at the nail place, we had just enough time to get to a nearby movie theater to see “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2”. We both really enjoyed this wrap-up of the whole Harry Potter series. Almost made us want to start back over watching from the first movie again.

Getting out of the movie a little after 4 pm, we decided to check out a nearby Beef O’Brady’s for dinner. Several people have said they liked the chain, but compared to a similar restaurant that we like, Red Robin, Beef’s came up short. It wasn’t bad, but nowhere near as good as Red Robin. Maybe it was just this location so we may give another location another chance at another time.

Leaving Beef’s we headed over to Sam’s Club for vitamins and other stuff and then back to Wal-Mart for groceries. We saved our shopping until now since the cold stuff would have been in the truck too long.

Finally we head home, arriving about 7:30, and both kind of pooped. A 9 hour day of doing stuff. Jan said as glad as she was to get out of the rig, she was looking forward to getting back and doing nothing for a few more days.

Me too.

August 22, 2012

Lake Whitney Thousand Trails . . .

After a nice night at the Lake Whitney Thousand Trails I was up a little early to take a look at my Onan generator problem. But, after extending the generator from the front of the rig, I confirmed what I remembered from the last time I worked on it. Everything is contained inside the housing, and there’s nothing for me to check out without climbing underneath and start taking off panels.

One thing I was trying to confirm was whether or not the generator has a separate fuel filter. Turns out it does, but unlike the oil and air filters, it’s not listed on the front of the case.

I did try the manual start out on the generator, again with no luck, so I retracted the gen slide and went inside to start up the rig diesel.

The first thing I noticed was that the engine didn’t start up immediately. Normally, the engine turns over for just a second and then starts right up. However this morning, it turned over for 4 or 5 seconds without catching. Turning the key off and then trying it again, it started right up.

OK. After checking the gauges, I put the engine in High Idle, started the levelers coming up, and went outside to unhook the shore power. And just as I was storing away the cable the engine just up and quit.


Going back inside, I once again tried to start the engine, and once again it cranked right up. So not wanted to tempt fate any longer, we hit the road.

And then then engine ran fine the rest of the day.

We got into the Ramblin Fever RV Park in Mount Pleasant, TX about 1:30pm and got set up.

After a nice nap, we headed out about 4:15pm to have dinner at Two Senoritas, a Mexican restaurant we passed on our way to the RV Park.

My Chicken Tortilla Soup was really good, and Jan said her Chile Relleno was delicious.

Tomorrow we’ve got a long travel day, 332 miles, that will end up at the Tom Sawyer RV Park on the Mississippi River in West Memphis, AR.

Starting Our 2nd Year Of Gate Guarding

August 22, 2013

60,000 and Counting . . .

We had planned to leave out from here in Houston about 9am this morning, but I guess we were itching to get on the road because we found ourselves ready to go a little after 8. Pulling out of our site we stopped in the park office lot just long enough to hitch up the truck and we were on the way. Like our last several days of travel we had the generator running so we could run the coach AC’s, since it’s supposed to be in the mid 90’s all along our route.

A few minutes later we were heading west on the Beltway 8 Tollway, and then onto I-10W. Our first stop was about 150 miles later at the Buc-ee’s off the Luling exit. We pretty much always stop here going or coming. This morning we got coffee and a couple of kolaches for brunch since we didn’t’ have any thing before we left Houston. About 50 miles later we were turning off I-10 onto Loop 410 S in San Antonio, and then a few miles later we were on I-37S. And along in here we hit another milestone.

Since we picked up our RV at the dealers on January 6th, 2008, we’ve traveled 60,000 miles. In the last 6 years we’ve been from Key West, FL to Fairbanks, AK. And from San Diego to Newfoundland, and a lot of places in between. We been in every state, except for some reason, Nebraska, Kansas, and Oklahoma. But we’ll get them some day.

About 20 miles later, we stopped at a new Pilot Travel Center that’s opened since we were here a year ago. And again, I’m really enjoying my Pilot / Flying J RV Plus Card. I get 6 cents a gallon off the Cash price, and no card dollar limits at the pump. Just fill and go. I even used it when I went inside to get a couple of gallons of diesel coolant to take with me.

The billing date, at least on my account, ends on the 15th of the month, and payment is due by the 30th. Since it doesn’t cost anything to get the card, it ought to be in every RV’ers wallet.

After topping off our diesel, and adding a bottle of Diesel Kleen to the tank, another 20 miles down the road, we stopped at the Wal-Mart in Pleasanton to top off the pantry with groceries

Finally we pulled into the Gate Guard Services lot off exit 83 about 3:45 and checked in at the office. They were expecting us and there was an open site in the RV parking area waiting for us. 50amp full hookups, and it’s free while we’re waiting for a gate, or coming off a gate, for that matter.

Getting us parked and connected to shore power, I tracked down Jamie, our supervisor, in the shop building and got the scoop on what should be our new gate. One oil company just bought some oil leases from another oil company, and we will be replacing some gate guards employed by another gate guard company. Luckily it’s only about 6 miles from here, so we won’t be out in the boonies and should have no problems with cell and data service.  Yay!

About 5pm we headed down to the Three Rivers area to have dinner at Pepe Broudreaux’s, one of our favorite local places. Jan ordered the Shrimp Diablo, a spicy shrimp and pasta dish, and I had my usual Blackened Chicken Breast stuffed with crawfish, bacon, and cheese. Delicious as usual, and big enough portions so we had leftovers for later.

Coming home, and passing back through Three Rivers, we saw a trailer parked in a vacant lot selling stickers and decals for your windows. Jan had been wanting a oil well sticker so we stopped to see what he had. Turns out he had pretty much what ever you want. He has a laptop and a large format stencil cutting machine, and a catalog of thousands of images stored on the hard drive. He also has a digital camera and a scanner so he can make a stencil from your artwork too. Jan found the perfect picture and he cut it out to order. He has dozens of colors and backgrounds of stencil materials so you can get pretty much any color you want. Neat.

Jamie said our gate might start Monday, but probably Tuesday, so we’ve got a few days to prepare, and also play around in San Antonio a little.

August 22, 2014

BBQ and Bison . . .

Jan and I started out this morning with Peru FTO Cecovasa coffee, made from beans roasted by our good friend, Bob Sutton. Bob’s really into the whole coffee thing. Me, I either like it, or I don’t.

And I like this.

Jan and I headed out into the furnace (101°) about 4:30 to Peter’s BBQ for the Friday Night Buffet. Located about 10 miles up US71, it’s one of our must-eat places when we’re in the area, especially on Friday night.  For $11 you get all the Brisket, Ribs, Sausage, or Chicken you want from the BBQ area. Then you go out to the dining room for the sides.

And by sides, I mean Fried Catfish, Fried Shrimp, Fried Chicken, Roast Pork, and even Hushpuppies. Then there’s all of the conventional sides.

Peters BBQ Sides 1a

Peters BBQ Sides 2a

And when you’ve filled up on all this, there’s Banana Pudding, Peach Cobbler, and Ice Cream.

Did I mention it’s only $11?

While we were driving up to Peter’s, it started sprinkling a little, and then died out right before we arrived. But once we got inside, it just started pouring down, enough so that it killed the satellite TV signal in the dining room. But in typical perverse Texas fashion, the sun shone brightly the entire time.

Leaving Peter’s BBQ, we headed further up US71 to the Wal-Mart in La Grange. The one in Columbus is closer, but is one of the older, smaller ones. But the one in La Grange, while not a full SuperCenter, is kind of a mini-Super. It’s not as big, and only had one entrance, but it does have a full Grocery department, which is what we were looking for.

Well that, and Landon’s birthday present.

Heading home we got a view of the Frebo Ranch bison herd, or at least a part of it. We’ve seen more at various times.

Colorado River Bison 2a

Finally getting home a little before 7pm, we found it had really cooled off . . . all the way down to 96 degrees! Yah!

Tomorrow is Landon’s birthday party. Last year Brandi and Lowell held it at their home. So, having learned their lesson, this year they’re having at Smith Ranch – Katy.

With waterslides, bouncy houses, horseback rides, and a petting zoo, it ought to be enough to keep everyone busy, and send everyone home pooped.

And, even better, when it’s all over, Brandi and Lowell just walk away and go home to a nice, clean house.


August 22, 2015

Two Minutes . . .

is all it took.

Today was Landon’s 5th birthday party, so after a quick stop for breakfast at the Columbus Whataburger, we headed into Katy to meet up at Brandi’s before heading over to Smith Ranch north of Katy. Smith Ranch is an entertainment center in a rural sitting, hosting birthday parties, weddings, and other special events. In fact it’s the same place Landon had his birthday party last year, and he wanted to go back again this year.

Smith Ranch 1

What the kids really like is the huge water slide they have there, and the kids make really good use of it. Of course sometimes it’s hard to get out of the way of the next slider and you just get bowled over.

Smith Ranch 3

But it’s still fun

Smith Ranch 4

And why slide when you can just leap?

Smith Ranch 5

Of course the highlight of the party was the piñata.

Smith Ranch 6

And yes, that’s a mustache-shaped piñata. For some reason Landon decided he wanted a mustache-themed party, so that’s what he got. A mustache piñata, a mustache cake, and mustache balloons and tablecloths.

Smith Ranch 7

Unfortunately there was a problem with the piñata. It was just too tough. Everybody wailed away at it, but it wouldn’t break. But what did break was the stick.

Smith Ranch 9

Finally after some help by one of the big kids, the goodies were released and the kids scrambled. I told Brandi that next year don’t get a piñata made out of plywood.

It started raining hard toward the end of the party, so Landon took his presents back to the house to open.

Landon Opening Presents

Once that was done, we all adjourned to Little V’s Vietnamese Bistro  about 3:30 for an early dinner. It was Chris, Linda, and Miss Piper’s first time and they really enjoyed as much as we do.

Then came my surprise. While we were at the party, our son Chris, and our son-in-law Lowell told me they were going to follow us back to the rig and help get the new AC on the roof.

And it couldn’t have been more simple. And yes, it only took a couple of minutes.

They pulled the picnic table up against the rig,

AC on Roof 1

And with me on the roof holding a big piece of cardboard to slide it on, Chris and Lowell just picked up the AC and handed it up to me.

AC on Roof 2

AC on Roof 3

AC on Roof 4

AC on Roof 5

Easy Peezy.

Tomorrow I’ll go up and swap the units out. I don’t expect to take more than a hour or two.

Thanks guys. We really appreciate it.

* * * * *

In late-breaking news, we have a gate. We leave Monday morning for a gate between Henderson, TX and Carthage, TX , about 260 miles away. We’re back with Jamie and Gate Guard Services again, and back in East Texas.

We’re supposed to be on the job Tuesday morning at 8am, so that means we’ve got a lot to do before we leave here on Monday.

Blue Moon Gate

August 22, 2016

On Site, But Not On Our Pad . . .

Jan and I were up at 5:45am to be ready to pull out of our Indian Woods Campground site by 6:45.

Normally Jan drives the truck behind me when we come in to a new site, but after scouting out the site yesterday afternoon and seeing we would have plenty of room to unhitch and get turned around, we got hitched up and pulled out about 7am.

Pulling onto the pad about 45 minutes, we found Jamie waiting for us with our Generator/Water trailer. While Jan talked to Jamie I got us unhitched  and then pulled the coach around and parked off to the side of the gate.

Hawkwood Site 2

Jamie then parked the generator trailer behind us and got our shore power and water hooked up. Then we waited, waited for anyone to show up to tell us where to actually park.

Jamie didn’t think we’d be able to stay inside the gate where we were now parked since we were pretty close to the three wells. So we looked outside the gate for other ideas, and found two possible sites.

The first one wasn’t really very good, and would require a lot of work to get it ready. Right along the fence line, it was basically a water-filled ditch, and was only wide enough to park the rig and the two support trailers all in a line, as well as our canopy and pickup.

Hawkwood Parking Site 1

The next, better place, was on the left side, right before you come into the gate. It was big enough, but the ground was very soft from the rain.

Not something I’d want to drive the coach out on. But with 6 inches of gravel, it might be a possibility.

Hawkwood Parking Site 2

But we’d have to wait and see. But finally someone showed up, someone who as it turned out was pretty ticked off that we had a motor coach, and not as he said, ‘a small camper’ that would fit on the side of the road. But when we showed him the foot of water filling the ditch, he mellowed somewhat.

Jamie finally gave up and left, saying he’d be back tomorrow morning with our sewer trailer, lights, and the rest of our setup stuff.

Then a couple of hours later a pipeline guy showed up to look at the problem, and quickly came up with a solution. He was going to lay down roadway mats, made up of double stacked timber planks. And that’s exactly what he did.

Hawkwood Parking Site 2 Mats

It only them about 30 minutes to get this laid and packed down. I guess if it will hold the shovel, it will hold the our rig.

Hawkwood Parking Site 2 Mats 2

Tomorrow they’re supposed to bring in a load of rock to build a ramp up onto the pad and then we’ll see.

It rained on and off all day, but it seemed to drain off pretty quickly. And with us at the top of the hill, we should stay relatively dry.

We hope.

It’s beginning to look like this is not a workover, but a full blown drill job of three holes. Looks like they’ve already got the cranes here to drag the drill rig between the holes, and then this afternoon a flatbed came in carrying what looked like the big metal plates that they build the rig on so they can drag it.

But we’ll know more tomorrow, I guess.


August 22, 2017

ButterBurgers and Dollar Tree . . .

I spent the morning tidying some client’s website stuff before Jan and I headed out a little before 1pm to the nearby theatre to see Despicable M3. the 3rd one in the series.

As we were leaving the park, I was happy to see that they had started to pave the entrance road from the turn-off, pass the ranger station, and passed the Activity Center, including a new larger parking area directly across from the Center.

Even better, it looks like they’re doing about a 4” layer, thick enough to stand up to the heavy rig traffic.

Our senior tickets were $13.50, and a medium popcorn and a medium drink were $13.50. There’s a problem here.

The movie was good, a little slower than the first two, mostly because they did a lot of character development, setting up the premise for the next few movies. We both enjoyed it.

After that we had Butterburgers at the nearby Culver’s.

Culver's ButterBurger

Mine had two patties, cheese, bacon, mayo, mustard, pickles, and onions. Really good.

For us it’s pretty much a toss-up between Whataburger and Culver’s. It’s like apples and oranges.

I do like Culver’s big crinkle cut fries better than Whataburger’s shoestring ones.

After lunch, we headed across the Interstate to the Dollar Tree to pick up a jug of Awesome and a container of the new Awesome Orange powder that we’ve seen online.

Awesome Orange

Supposed to be really good. We’ll see.

Coming back to the park about 4:30 it was good to see that they had almost completed paving both side of the road around the ranger station. So far though, I haven’t seen any sign that they’ll paving the interior park roads, but I hope so.

We’ll see.

Wrapping up, ESPN has pulled sports announcer Robert Lee from the play by play calling of an upcoming college game, due to the fact that his name is similar to a Confederate general.

The problem is . . . he’s Asian.

And ‘Lee’ is about as common as ‘Smith’ in his culture.

And finally, Anderson Cooper’s relatives owned Michelle Obama’s relatives.

What should we tear down now?

August 22, 2018

On To Budapest . . .

Looks like we’ve got our basic itinerary nailed down for our European trip next year. We’ll leave here April 26th, arrive in Budapest on the 27th. Then after two days there, our cruise leaves on the 29th.

Fifteen days later we arrive in Amsterdam, where we’ll spend two additional days before taking the train to Paris. After four nights there we’ll take the Chunnel train to London for another four nights. Then finishing up, we’ll fly home on the May 23rd making it a 28 day trip. Yowza!

Tomorrow is probably going to be an errand day, hopefully with lunch at East Star Chinese Buffet.

August 22, 2019

And It Was The Perfect Day For It, Too . . .

Although it rained heavily earlier this morning, it had cleared by the time I was up and about and caffeined. So after I got back from O’Reilly’s with the brake cleaner, I was outside and pulling off the driver side rear wheel by about 10.

Although I had pulled the passenger side wheel the other day to look at the rotor, I started on the other side today because it was opposite the sun, giving me a little shade. Then this afternoon I planned to switch over to the other side, again for the shade.

But as happens, my best-laid plans ‘gang aft a-gley.’

I knew something was up when I noticed that the rotor was in really good shape, and not worn down as the passenger side was.

Driver Side Rotor

This what the other rotor looked like.

Truck Rear Brake Rotor 2

And when I removed the caliper, and then the brake pads, I found the piston in the caliper was jammed and could not be moved, in or out.

At that point I was done for the day, so I put everything back together and headed inside to see about getting new calipers.

I’m surprised that I couldn’t feel any difference in the braking with one side working and the other side jammed, but since 60-80% of braking is on the front wheels I guess it was just masked. But I never felt any kind of pulling when I braked either.

And checking out Amazon for Rear Brake Calipers, I found something strange. On some vehicles the calipers are the same on both sides, but I have a different one on each side. The right side caliper was $43.51, but the left side one was $63.21. And this is the same model from the same manufacturer. This totaled $106.72.

And this was for remanufactured ones.

So I put in a call to O’Reilly’s to see what they had. And they had a set for $105.98. And these were new ones, too. So I told them to order me a set, and was told they would be in this afternoon.

However when I went to pick them up I was told that the price would be $149.98.


But I cooled down when I was told that I would get back $22 each or $44 total when I bring back the old calipers to them. So that gives the $105.98 that I was quoted.

So now I’m pushing all this back to this Saturday, Sunday, or next Tuesday, I guess.

August 22, 2020

Volcanos and Piñatas . . .

Jan and I headed up to Katy a little before 4pm to meet up with Brandi, Lowell, Landon, and Landon’s BFF, Sophie.

Rainforest Cafe Landon and Sophie

Landon and Sophie are both 10 years old and their birthdays are within a few days of each other, so they often have their parties together, as they did last year.

But this year we’re just having family dinner at the Rainforest Café in Katy Mills Mall, one of Landon’s favorite places.

On the way up, though it was clear when we left the rig, by the time we got on the Sam Houston Tollway, it was pouring down rain. And it pretty much stayed that way until we finally got on I-10 heading out toward Katy. Luckily I had allowed enough extra time so we weren’t late for our 5:30 reservation.

Like a lot of places, Rainforest Café seems to have cut back on their menu somewhat, but everything is always good.

Jan got her favorite Shrimp Tacos,

Rainforest Cafe Shrimp Tacos 2

while I tried something new,  the Korean Spicy Chicken StirFry.

Rainforest Cafe Korean StirFry

And of course for dessert, we all shared their famous Volcano Lava Cake, complete with sparklers.

Rainforest Cafe Volcano Cake 2

This seems to be their most popular dish, since they brought out about a dozen of them while we were there, always making a big production of it, as they did for Landon and Sophie.

Really, really good.

Afterwards we had planned to walk around the mall a bit, but found with their reduced hours, the stores all closed at 7pm, which was about when we got out of the restaurant. So Jan and I said our goodbyes, got our hugs, and headed home, encountering much nicer weather on the way.