Monthly Archives: February 2023


Or Not.

Lunch today was at the Jimmy Changas over in Pasadena where we were meeting up with long-time friend Tricia. Tricia is another one of our friends that started out as a client and ended up as a friend. We try to get together every couple of months and always have a great time.

Jan got the Pollo Marisco, two grilled chicken breasts covered is Shrimp cream sauce.

Jimmy Changas Pollo Marisco 20230228

I got my usual Mexican Vegetable Chicken Tortilla Soup.

Jimmy Changas Tortilla Soup 20230228

So full of stuff that your spoon just floats on top and doesn’t sink.


Jimmy Changas Tricia 20230228

A really great time.

But earlier I already had trouble waiting for me when I got up this morning. Jennifer, the office manager, called to say the icon for our POS (Point of Sale) software had disappeared from both the Desktop and the Taskbar. So I told her to try to start it up from the Start menu list.

But after trying that, she said that, though the folder was there, the POS software itself was missing. So I went in remotely to look for myself, and found it actually was gone. So I copied it back over from a backup and then ran it to be sure it worked.

However as soon I did, I saw something flash on the screen, and the program disappeared again.


But when I repeated it, I saw what was happening. Malwarebytes had decided that our POS was Ransomware and had deleted it to ‘protect’ me.

So after I tried it again with the same result, I fixed it by just deleting Malwarebytes..

Problem solved!

Thought for the Day:

One of those headlines you know you probably shouldn’t read, but you just have to.

Meerkat expert cleared of assaulting monkey trainer in love spat over llama-keeper.

And then you’re kind of disappointed you did.

February 28, 2010

Gila Bend…where?

Today was our last morning with our friends, Al and Adrienne, before we left Tucson for 3 days in Gila Bend, AZ.

And, of course, it started pouring down rain last night and it was still coming down this morning. But since I had a head’s up from the Weather Channel, I went ahead and did as much as I could last night, including hitching up the truck.

But I still got soaking wet finishing up unhooking the utilities and the satellite system.

But first, we had a final breakfast with our friends Al and Adrienne at the resort restaurant. Since we were already hitched up, they were nice enough to pick us up at our rig.

As I mentioned earlier, we first met Al and Adrienne up in Fairbanks, AK in 2008 and became fast friends. Adrienne asked this morning why I thought we all became such good friends. I said it was because we were all weird.

She seemed surprised and ask how we were weird. I said we climb in a big box on wheels and travel from Alaska to Newfoundland and back. We don’t always know where we will be tomorrow night, and we like it that way.

Apparently some people just can’t handle this.

The other important thing is that your spouse has to be your best friend. Things are just too close to have it otherwise.

And I’m very lucky in this respect. Jan has been my best friend for almost 43 years now, and I would still rather be with her than to do anything else.

Anyway, we said our goodbyes to Al and Adrienne and got underway a few minutes before 11am. We had a great time visiting them and they went out of their way to show us the sights of Tucson, along with some great eating.

We’re going to try to see them later this summer when they will be up in Washington state.

We pulled into Holt’s Shell RV Park in Gila Bend, AZ about 1:15pm, and just in time too. We got their last site. Lucky us. We last stayed here two years ago on our roundabout way to Fairbanks, AK, and really like this park. And it’s only $10 per night using Passport America. What a deal!

We’ll be here until Wednesday so I can finished up some projects on the rig that were hampered by the cold and rain we had for last three weeks in Houston. After that we’ll head on over to Yuma.

Later this afternoon we over to Sofia’s Mexican Restaurant for what Jan describes as the best Shrimp Burrito she’s ever eaten. We ate here two years ago and Jan’s been talking about them ever since.

February 28, 2011

Pizza and da Boyz . . .

Today started off great!

I didn’t get awakened by a blown circuit breaker.

Actually it was a pretty quiet morning with coffee and some computer work.

Later in the morning I used the cartridge removal tool I got yesterday to remove my shower faucet cartridge. Or at least I tried to.

It wouldn’t quite work, so I had to improvise something to help get it out, but I finally got it loose.

Then around noon I drove over to Home Depot to see if I could find a replacement cartridge. I did find one that looked like it would work, but it had been opened and taped back together. It was the only one they had, so I didn’t have much choice.

And, of course, when I got home, inside the new cartridge box was the proper removal tool, which I wouldn’t have had until I got the old cartridge out and knew which one to buy.

Of course.

About 2:30 Jan and I drove back over to the Fortuna area, this time to visit some stores to solicit gift certificates as door prizes for the upcoming rally. We had pretty good luck, picking up 4, and being told to come back tomorrow to pick up prizes from 3 other places.

Getting back about 4:30 we soon were on our way back out to eat supper at Da Boyz Italian Cuisine on Main St. in downtown Yuma, along with Tom and Barb Westerfield

We ate here last year, and it was just as good this time. This is really great Italian. We all had a little bit of everything, pizza, spaghetti, lasagna, and ravioli, and no one was disappointed.

We got back home about 7:30 and I started working on the shower faucet. It took a lot of fooling with it, mainly due to the fact that the instructions were in English, French, and Spanish, but they didn’t make sense in any of those.

Finally, I stopped reading the instructions, figured it out on my own, and got it working. No more drip!

Tomorrow Jan and I will hit some more places for door prizes, and then about 3:30 we’ll head back over to Gila Bend, 116 miles away, to be initiated into the Elks Lodge there.

Another busy day.

February 28, 2013

The Deer Whisperer . . .

My main chore from my To-Do list today was to flush out our rig’s water heater. Normally I do this before we leave Houston for the year, but just ran out of time this year.

The first step was to turn off the water heater. In this case, the electric switch. Next I turned on the hot water in the lavatory and let it run until the water was cold.

Leaving the water running, I went outside and turned off the water to the rig, and then removed the drain plug on the water heater, as shown at the bottom of this photo.

Water Heater 1a

I left the faucet open inside the rig to release the vacuum and make it easier to drain the heater. After letting most of the water drain out, I hooked up my cleaning wand to a hose, turned the water on, and inserted it into the drain hole.

Water Heater Wand

Using the wand I flushed out the inside of the heater, noting how much trash and gunk comes out. And in this case I didn’t see a lot of stuff, which made my job a little easier.

If I had found a lot coming out, I would have put the drain plug back in, removed the T&P valve located above the drain, pour in about a pint of vinegar, fill the water heater with water, and then turn the power back on and let it set for a couple of hours.

This would dissolve and remove a lot of the crud. At this point I would start over with my flushing until the water draining out was clear.

In this case I just put the drain plug back in, turned the water back on to the rig, and then waited until water was running freely. At this point, I turned the heater back on, and I was done.

If you do this for yourself, be very careful to not accidently turn the power on to the heater without any water in it. It will burn out the heating elements in just a few seconds.

Later, about 2pm, Jan and I headed out for the afternoon to run some errands over in Boerne (Bur nee), about 25 miles away. Our first stop was Home Depot to pick up couple of things for my rig projects, and then a few blocks later, Radio Shack for some new test leads and connectors.

Then it was on to Wal-Mart, and then HEB for a couple of things that Wal-Mart did have.

Coming back to our park, we were passing a ranch and looked over to see a bull elk,

Bump Gate Elk 1

and a cow (female).

Bump Gate Elk 2

Never can tell what you’ll see on a Texas back road.

Coming back into Lakehills, we stopped at Cowan’s on the Creek, a local restaurant that really good online reviews. Based on them, we were looking forward to a really good steak. Unfortunately the reviews didn’t seem to know about the empty lake and the lack of business, and the fact that the place had shut down their full kitchen two weeks ago. So we had our choice of burgers, chicken fried steak, or the lunch special, Meatloaf, Cheesy Potatoes, and Green Beans.

Jan and I both agreed it was really good, but it wasn’t the steak we were looking forward to. We did have a nice talk with the owner about RV’ing, and also about the missing lake. She said the real reason the lake was dry was that due to the drought, San Antonio was pumping so much water from the river that supplies the lake at the dam, that none was left to spill over the dam and keep the lake filled.

Getting back to the rig about 6:30pm, Jan got out to feed the deer, and was soon surrounded.

Deer Whisperer 1

Deer Whisperer 2

At one point I counted almost 50 of them crowding around her. They were so tame you could just hold out your empty hand and they would come up and nuzzle it.

Deer Whisperer 3

Nice Rack!

Medina Deer

February 28, 2014

Old Friends and New . . .

Had something strange happen with DirecTV this morning. When Jan got up she found we had no TV stations available. The message on the screen seemed to be saying that there was a problem with the receiver. So I did a full reset on it with no luck.

So the next thing I did before calling them, was to log into my account. And I quickly found the problem. My account was past due. But what was strange about this is that I’m set up for auto-pay for my DirecTV account, one of the few that I do this on. So why didn’t they bill me? Well, apparently because they said my credit card was no good. And the reason it was no good was that it was an old, canceled number.

I have had 3 VISA debit cards since November. While we were gate guarding in early November, I got an email from Chase saying they had detected suspicious activity on my card and were sending me a new one. And as soon as I received the new card I went to the DirecTV site and updated my card info. And using this new card number, my December payment went through just fine.

Then, shopping at Target for the first time in several years, we got caught up in the Target data breach, and so Chase sent me another new card. Which I promptly updated on the DirecTV site once again. And using this new, new card number, my January payment went through just fine.

So what happened to my February payment? Well, it looks like it was a server hard drive crash, and an out-of-date backup. Because when I looked at my credit card info stored on the site, the number showing up was my old, old number that hadn’t been used since November. And two payments had gone through since then with no problems on the new numbers.

The only thing that makes sense is that the hard drive containing my info (and a lot of other people’s of course) crashed and burned, and they restored a backup to the replacement drive. And either, someone grabbed up an older backup by accident, or the most recent ones were bad, and they used the first good one they found.

I’ve seen both of these happen over the years, so it’s nothing new. But hopefully it’s fixed for now. I updated my card info and manually made the payment, and about 5 seconds later, we had TV again. I may check it again next month and be sure it’s OK.

About 1 pm, new friend Debi Hurlburt and old friend Jan Evans walked down to our rig and invited us to Debi’s for an hour or so. And of course we said YES.

Here we are last night with new friends Ed and Debi Hurlburt at Sealand Seafood.

Debi-Ed-Jan-Greg at Sealand

And here we are with old friends, Dave and Jan Evans at Stomp’s Burger Joint in Kemah back in December of 2011.

Jan and Dave Evans

It seems like no matter where we go, we make new friends, and run into old ones. Just one of the many benefits of the RV life.

February 28, 2015

Wheels and Waffles . . .

Unfortunately, I was up at about 8 this morning to finish a few projects outside the rig to get us ready to hit the road tomorrow morning. Then about 9:30 Jan and I drove up to the IHOP in Webster to meet Chris, Linda, and Miss Piper for breakfast.

As is usual for an IHOP on the weekends, we had about a 30 minute wait for a table. I’m always amused by people who come in and, finding a 30 minute wait, leave and go elsewhere. Where are they going to go on a Saturday morning that doesn’t have a wait? Maybe a McDonald’s or something, but if they would settle for that, then they probably would have gone there first.

And by the time they leave IHOP, drive somewhere else and are again told a 30 minute, they’ve already wasted 30 minutes.

After a great breakfast, I had Chicken and Waffles, and Jan had an Omelet, Jan and Miss Piper headed out for their Mani-Pedi afternoon, though Jan just does the Pedi part.

For me, I was off to take care of some truck work. First up was to have my spare tire swapped out with the right front tire, while also swapping the wheels. Rather than go to a big tire place and wait around, Chris told me about a place called Big Boy’s Tires.

After I told the Hispanic lady owner what I wanted, she started yelling in Spanish, and it was like that scene in Back To The Future at the 1955 gas station when 4 or 5 guys come running out to put in the gas, check the oil, wash the windshield, and check the tire pressure.

One guy started loosening the lug nuts on the front tire, while another one was jacking up the truck with a floor jack. At the same time, another guy was cranking down the spare underneath the rear of the truck.

Then two guys broke down the tires on two separate machines, swapped tires with each other, and put them back together. After that, while one guy put the new spare back under the truck, the other guy had the new front tire on the balancer. And about 5 minutes the tire was balanced and reinstalled, and the wheels back on the ground.

It was like watching a NASCAR pit crew in action.

After all that excitement, I had a very sedate car wash and oil change. Being Saturday afternoon, I did have about a 30 minute wait on the oil change, but no problem.

By the time I got back to Chris’, Jan and Piper were done, so after saying our goodbyes until May in Illinois, Jan and I headed back toward the rig, with a stop at Rudy’s BBQ for takeout for meals on the road, and Wal-Mart for a few last minute things before we hit the road tomorrow to the Colorado River Thousand Trails, the first stop on our way to Tucson.

Back at the rig, I spent some time packing everything away outside. I went ahead and disconnected water and sewer, since it’s supposed to be raining tomorrow morning when we leave. So now all I’ll have to do then is bring in the Sat dish and disconnect shore power.

Wrapping up, Brandi, Lowell, and Landon left early this morning for their Colorado ski trip.

Landon on Plane

Brandi said Landon was really excited to get to fly. It looks like it.

February 28, 2016

Semi-Monthly or is it Bi-Monthly . . .

Today was another of our semi-monthly travels, from the Lake Conroe Thousand Trails all the way to the other side of Texas, well, the other side of Houston anyway, to the Colorado River Thousand Trails in Columbus, TX..

But first up this morning we did our usual pre-travel breakfast at the Conroe Cracker Barrel, but a little different this time, because we were joined by our soon-to-be-ex next door neighbors, Brett and Frankie O’Neal. They’re heading for Florida on Tuesday so we probably won’t run into them again for a while, but we’re looking forward to it when it does happen.

Getting back to the park about 9:45, we were hooked up and moving out by 10:30. One nice thing about the side-by-side sites in the ‘F’ section is that most of them are long enough to allow us to hitch the toad before we pull out, saving us time since we don’t have to stop again at the front of the park to hook up.

Our trip today was a lot less windy than last time, at least the first part of it. It seemed that the further west we got, the windy  it got, especially the last 20 miles or so.

About 15 miles out from our Columbus exit, we stopped off at the Oasis Truck Stop for coffee and a potty break. Coming back out, I did my usual walk-around and discovered we had a problem. The front of the truck was covered in oil, as well as a lot was scattered over the back of the rig.

After looking things over through the oily mess, I couldn’t see anything obviously  wrong, so I decided to proceed on Colorado River, keeping a close eye on my gauges. I hadn’t noticed anything out of the ordinary on the trip, with all my gauges showing normal.

And it was the same on the last 20 miles too. My oil pressure was good, turbo pressure was good, water temp was fine, everything was fine. And the engine started right and sounded normal too.

So after I get the washer finished, I’ll dig out the pressure washer and clean things up a bit to make it a little easier to see what’s wrong. Of course the first thing I’ll check is the breather tube, and then go from there.

I’ve seen this occasionally in the past when using the PacBrake exhaust brake a lot in mountainous areas, and you get some blow-by coming out, but nothing like this amount, and I wasn’t even using the PacBrake today at all.

We got into the Colorado River Thousand Trails a little after 1pm, and found ourselves greeted by our friends Jim and Perri Dean as we waited at the gate for the ranger to check us in. They were hoping to see Karma but she hadn’t come out of hiding yet, so maybe next time.

As it turns out, we ended up in the ‘A’ section, right across the street from where Karma lived before we adopted here, So it will be interesting to take her back to visit and see how she reacts. I’ve got a harness for her now so it should be pretty safe.

For dinner tonight Jan heated up our leftover fajitas from last night’s visit to El Bosque, still delicious.

I didn’t do anything on the washer today except roll it back and forth in the rig when we traveled. But I’ll be back on it tomorrow.

February 28, 2017

Still Two or Three More . . .

Once again we were out the door at 8:30 (this is getting old) and on our way to our doctor appointments down in Friendswood.

These were with our general practitioner for our lab work and prescription refills, so we were both out within two hours with a clean bill of health. I even lost a little weight, though how the hell that happened, I’ll never know. We won’t know all our test results for a few days, but we don’t expect any problems.

Then it was over to Webster to have what might be our last King Food meal for this time here. And as usual we had our favorite Chicken in Hot Garlic Sauce with jalapenos, and XXXXXXX Spicy.

King Food Chcken Garlic 3

Saving half our meal for later, I next dropped Jan off for her Bone Density test, while I made a quick trip to Home Depot for a couple things.

Then it was back on the road heading up to Katy and Brandi and Lowell’s. Brandi was coming home a little early so she and Jan could go and get Pedi’s – sans Mani’s. While they were gone I headed out to a nearby JiffyLube to get an oil/filter change for the truck.

But even though there were cars in the bays, apparently they don’t actually open until tomorrow. When I asked about the cars,  I was told they were ‘practice’ cars. But when I offered my truck for ‘practice’, they didn’t take me up on it for some reason.

And I wouldn’t have even charged them.

So I’ll have to try again while we’re in Conroe. I’m also going to try and get the truck’s headliner replaced there too. It’s gradually coming loose, and there’s only so much that Gorilla Tape can do.

When Jan and Brandi were done getting their toes tickled, Lowell, Landon, and I met them at the nearby La Finca Mexican Restaurant for dinner. And then it was back to the rig by 8:30. And then tomorrow we move.

We’re going back to Lake Conroe for a week before coming back here for two days and then heading for Tucson.

One of these days I’m going to have to retire, buy a big RV, and get some rest.

And we’ve still got two or three more trips down to Clear Lake before we leave.

February 28, 2018

All Done . . . At least until August

Jan had her follow-up appointment with her urologist this morning, hoping to get her stent out and be done with all this. But her 9am appointment started to go downhill pretty quickly. They didn’t even know she had an appointment.

Well, we had a print-out that said she had an appointment on 2/28/18 at 9am. Then the nurse somewhat sheepishly admitted that the doctor sometimes forgets to actually ‘record’ the appointments he schedules.

But Jan finally got called in about 10:30 and we were out the door by 11am. And unless something else comes up, she’s done until her six month checkup the end of August.


Done with all this, we decided to have brunch at the nearby The Egg & I Breakfast & Brunch place. Though it’s one of our favorites, the last time we ate here was almost exactly 3 years ago. Too long!

But rather than go with some of  their fancier dishes, like Crab Cake Benedict and a Spinach Bacon Mushroom Omelet, we both went basic with their Two Egg Breakfast with Bacon. Jan’s with a Belgian Waffle, and mine with a fruit cup.

The Egg and I Breakfast

Both delicious, but I think our favorite is their really good Hazelnut coffee. And they leave the pot on the table. Even better.

Finishing up, it was back home for the rest of the afternoon, mostly just goofing off, but I did take care of a few things around the rig. I cleaned the filters on both AC’s, mostly because with this warm spell, we’re running the AC’s again.

I want my winter back.

After being offline for over 24 hours, our USPS Click N Ship software finally started working yesterday. Don’t know what happened but we hope it doesn’t happen again anytime soon, since it puts a real crimp in getting shipments out.

If nothing else comes up, I’ll probably drain and flush our water heater tomorrow. With everything going on I skipped it last year, so I want to get it done before we start traveling again in a few months.

I remember the first time I flushed it was after our first year on the road in 2008. I got so much gunk out of it that I was positive it had never been done in the eight years before we owned the rig. And I think our hot water capacity doubled after I was finished.

February 28, 2019

Breaker Problems . . .

We spent the day up in the Trinity TX area visiting with Janice and Dave Evans in their new house, along with Nancy and Roy Lackey, and Debi and Ed Hurlburt

Conroe RV Group at the Evans - Mine468

We had great time and hope to all get together again soon.

While we were up there, I got a message on phone telling me that my refrigerator had gone offline. At first I thought maybe the park power was off, but all my remote stuff was OK. The fridge was just off.

So when we got back home about 8pm, I started looking for the problem.

The 12 volts was still on to the fridge, just the AC was missing. At first I thought maybe it was the Smart Plug outlet that controls the fridge, so I removed it from the power plug. Still nothing. So I checked the AC breaker box at the bottom of the bed.

Aha! The fridge breaker was popped, so I reset it. And now the fridge had power again.

Problem solved, right?  Nope.

About 10 minutes later I notice I had lost AC again.  So I again reset the breaker. And then 5 minutes later when I checked, no power again.

So bad breaker, or bad refrigerator?

Going back outside I ran a extension cord from a bay power outlet to the frig, and again had power to it.

And an hour later the fridge was still on and the temp was coming down.

So now I’ve got a breaker to replace. But at least it’s cheaper than a refrigerator.

February 28, 2021

And It Started Off So Well . . .

After turning off the shore water, I started removing the old toilet about 10:45 this morning, and by 11:45, it was disconnect, unbolted, and setting off to the side in a large garbage bag.

Then using a screwdriver bit in my drill, I removed the 6 screws holding down the 4 bolt to 2 bolt adapter and lifted it off. And as I hoped I found the original floor flange still in usable condition.

Then I brought the new toilet in from outside and looked it over. And that’s when I discovered a problem. This toilet had no hookup for the external spray hose. And Jan wants the spray hose.

The spray hose connection comes off of the vacuum breaker that plugs in the back of the toilet. And the vacuum breaker on the new toilet had no connection for the hose like the old one did.

So simple, right? Just swap vacuum breakers. But easier said than done. The hose connected the vacuum breaker with the flush pedal water valve on the side of toilet was heated and pushed onto the fitting and would not come off, so I had to cut it off. And once I did that the hose was now too short to reach.

By this time I decided to call an audible. It was obvious that I was going to have go out for new hose. And since it was now after 2pm, I decided that with the uncertain repair time, we would go out and have lunch at the Denny’s, pick up some new hose at the nearby Lowe’s, and then stash Jan in the Texas City Quality Inn for the night. One with a bathroom. So getting Jan all set up, I headed back to the rig to try and finish up. And it actually went pretty smoothly, all things considered.

I heated a mug of water in the microwave, and then used it to soften the new hose to fit over the connections, leaving me with this on the water valve.

New Toilet Water Vale

And this on the vacuum breaker.

New Toilet Vacuum Breaker

And now came the part that I figured I’d have problems with, but didn’t.

I was able to set the toilet right in place with the 4 bolts lined up perfectly. Then it was just a matter of connecting up the water supply, and then tighten down the 4 nuts that hold the toilet in place.

And though when I tuned on the water pump, I had a small leak, a quick turn took care of it. Then I had to install the pedestal cover and pedal cover, and by 6pm I was done.d

Then after tidying up, I headed back over to the hotel for the night.

Glad it’s done.

Old Faithful Rides Again . . .

This afternoon we dropped off the Jeep at Roland’s Precision Machining up in Alvin so he could look at the Oil Pressure light again.

To recap: When they got our Jeep put back together at the top-end rebuild, the light was stuck on. They knew the oil pressure was fine since they measured it directly with a gauge. They next changed out the oil pressure sensor. Twice.

All with no luck.

Occasionally it would go away for a bit and then pop back up. But it never stayed away long. So after a lot of wire tracing with no luck, Roland was going to bring in an automotive electrical specialist to take a look.

So Jan and I are back in Old Faithful, our 2004 Dodge Dakota with 311,000+ miles. But it always cranks up first time, every time.

Tomorrow we’re heading up to Pasadena to meet up with long-time friend Tricia at Jimmy Changas for lunch. Looking forward to it.

Found this on the online menu for China Delight where we ate up in Conroe yesterday.

Low-Cat Menu

Don’t know about you, but I always prefer my Vegetable Lo Mein low in Cat.

Thought for the Day:

You notice how accidents always seem to happen with unloaded guns. This is the reason I always keep my guns loaded.

February 27, 2010

Planes, planes, and more planes…

Our friends, Al and Adrienne, picked up as about 10am and we headed over to the Pima Air and Space Museum.

Arriving at the museum, we found that the landscaping followed some of the planes inside.

First we have the Fishhook Barrel Cactus.


Next we have Saguaro Cactus.


And then, of course, the Stealth Cactus!


I guess you had to be there.

This is a BD-5J MicroJet, the world’s smallest jet plane. And it was a kit!


Another kit, Burt Rutan’s Long EZ.


The Starr Bumble Bee, the world’s smallest plane.


The McCullough Super J-2 Gyrocopter


The HoppiCopter. I’d really like one of these.


It’s a big leap to the SR-71 Blackbird, the fastest plane in the world.


The A-10 Warthog ground attack plane.


A Beechcraft Bonanza. My uncle used to have one of these.


The Grumman F7F TigerCat.


The B-52. This one is one of 2 configured to carry the X-15 aloft.


This is the Douglas MB-1 Genie air to air missile. And it contained a NUCLEAR! warhead. It was to be launched into the middle of Russian bomber formations and take them all out at once.  Jan’s father used to work on these when he was in the Air Force. It’s amazing how small they can make an atomic bomb.


This is B-57 Canberra bomber. I used to work on these. I was amazed to find that it had BUICK! jet engines in it.  Who knew Buick even made jet engines.


The Convair B-58 Hustler, American’s first supersonic bomber.


The Cessna T-37 jet trainer. I also used to work on these.


The RA-5C Vigilante. In its original configuration as the the Navy A-5 bomber, it had a novel way of dropping its nuclear bomb load. It spit it out the tail!  So many jokes, so little time.


NASA’s Super Guppy. It’s amazing that this thing could fly.


The Convair B-36 nuclear bomber. It had 10 engines, 6 prop engines and 4 jet engines!


At this point we took a break and went down the road to a great little Mexican place called Poco and Mom’s.  And the food was great.  My Green Chili Chicken Enchiladas was the best I’ve ever had.

Coming back to the museum, we began touring some of the displays. This is the Altair 8800 computer, probably the first practical home computer. It was a kit and was my first computer.


This is a photograph of Grace Hopper’s logbook showing the first computer ‘bug’.  It was a moth that got caught in a relay, and is the origin of the term ‘computer bug’. This was from the time when computers filled whole buildings.


This is a Grumman F-4U Corsair of ‘Baa Baa Black Sheep” fame.


This is a German V1 ‘Buzz Bomb”.


The ‘Columbus’, a updated version of the Grumman J2F-2 Duck.


After a great time at the museum, we headed back to the park, passing Davis-Monthan AFB, America’s aircraft boneyard. Thousands of  aircraft are mothballed here.


This satellite photo shows just a small portion of the planes stored there.


On the way home, we stopped by Fry’s Supermarket to pick up some groceries. Fry’s is Kroger’s here in Arizona.

This is our last full day here in Tucson. Tomorrow we’re heading over to Gila Bend for a few days before moving on to Yuma.

February 27, 2011

A Very Rude, Very Early Awakening . . .

Yes, very early . . . 2 am, to be exact.

And to add insult to injury, it happened again at 9:30 am.

The circuit breaker popped. Twice.

For no good reason. The floor heater was the only thing on. All I can figure is that several other things all came on at the same time. The heater, the water heater, and the refrigerator, for example.

Hopefully it won’t happen again this morning.

I tried to go back to bed, but ended up just making us coffee and getting off to a slow and slightly grumpy start.

Then a little after 11 I went back over to the gun show. I wanted a new holster for my Ruger LCP and I had also seen a disassembly manual for my M1 Carbine that I had my eye on.

Right after I got back, Jan and I headed out on some errands. But as we were leaving the fairgrounds, this Boeing 787 Dreamliner on landing approach passing overhead. I had first seen it a couple of days ago and was curious why it was here.

The 787 is still in testing phase and won’t be available commercially until later in the year. It turns out that the Yuma area is one of a couple of places around the country that has a lot of good flying weather so they’re doing it here.

Boeing 787 Dreamliner


Here’s a better photo.


If you’d like some more information concerning the 787 from a pilot’s view, click here. More 787 Stuff.

Leaving the fairgrounds we first headed east toward the Fortuna area, about 9 miles away.

Fortuna is a very nice shopping area that’s essentially a suburb of Yuma. Our first stop was a couple of the dollar stores looking for some cleaning products.

Then since it was lunch time, we stopped in DQ. Jan had a Chili Cheese Dog and I had a Grilled BLT. Both very good.

Outside in the parking I saw this neat-looking car for sale. It turned out to be a 1934 Mercedes 500K replica, but very well done. At first I thought it might be on a VW chassis, but it turns out to be something much better.

Mercedes 500K 1

It’s got a Ford Boss 302 engine, automatic transmission, AC, power steering, and power brakes, all on a custom-built frame. Only $26,500 or OBO.

Very nice. I wonder how it would look being towed behind our rig?

Our next stop was right across the parking lot, at Al’s RV Supply. This is a really good RV supply place, with a lot of parts and gadgets you just can’t find at Camping World. Stop by if you can.

Then we walked next door to Fry’s. No, not the fun one, Fry’s Electronics, but Fry’s Grocery Store. But for what it’s worth, they were both started by the same family.

I wanted to buy some lottery tickets and we were looking for some other stuff.

Next it was back in the truck and back into Yuma to the Yuma Palms shopping area. Our first stop was Kohl’s where I was looking for a new vacuum cleaner. Then, when I didn’t find it there, I tried the Target next door, also with no luck. But I did come back to the truck with Cinnamon Dolce Latte’s from Starbuck’s, so Jan was happy.

Our next stop was Sam’s Club to pick up some vitamins and other things. Sam’s can be a dangerous place, at least dangerous to the bank account. If you spend too much time there, you can always find something you absolutely don’t need, but just have to have.

Finally it was down the road a piece to Home Depot to get the Moen cartridge puller tool that I mentioned yesterday. I’ll probably wait till tomorrow to use it since there’s a chance the old cartridge will break coming out and I want to be sure I have time to get a new one before Home Depot closes.

We finally got home about 3:30, and by the time we had everything put away, we were ready to go eat supper.

So a little after 4 pm, Tom, Barb, Jan, and I all headed over to the local Golden Corral for dinner. However when we got there the line was almost out the door, and wasn’t moving either.

So Barb called the Texas Roadhouse right next door and found out they had no wait, so we all scurried across the parking lot, (well, some of us scurried, some of us kind of waddled) and were seated in a booth ordering our drinks five minutes later. Neat!

And after a great meal, we got back to the rigs about 6 pm and settled in for the night.

Tomorrow Jan and I will start making the rounds of businesses soliciting door prizes for the upcoming rally that starts next week.

Busy, busy, busy!

February 27, 2012

Back to Work . . .

It was really nice to be able to just get up and relax this morning without having to pack up and travel somewhere. But after goofing off all morning we did have chores.

So about 1 pm Jan and I headed out to start soliciting gift certificates to give away as door prizes at the nightly get-togethers. But our first stop was the Der Wienerschnitzel right across the street from the fairgrounds.

Jan and I both really enjoy a good hot dog, and Der Wienerschnitzel always fills the bill. Even their Cheddar Poppers are hot and spicy.

After lunch, we began working our way down the list of last year’s donors. After a slow start, we got donations from Applebee’s, Texas Roadhouse, Famous Dave’s BBQ, and Mimi’s, and several requests to come back tomorrow to pick gifts up.

We got back to the rig a little after 4:30, and a little later, Mister and I sat outside for a while. I was watching the Marine AV-8A Harriers doing T&G’s, (Touch & Goes) while Mister was on coyote patrol.

As we were parking here yesterday, we saw a coyote run thru the grassy area behind us, and then later we heard about a coyote attacking a small dog belonging to a gun show attendee here at the fairgrounds.

At about 27 pounds Mister outweighs most coyotes I’ve seen, and his favorite pastime is chasing dogs, large dogs like German Shepherds, Chows, or Rottweilers. Every one turned and ran when he came after them

A little after 5 pm, Tom, Barb, Jan and I headed over to downtown Yuma to have dinner at Da Boyz Pizza, One of our favorite local restaurants, their pizza, and everything else for that matter, is fantastic.

Jan had her favorite Meat Ravioli and I had their Spaghetti and Meatballs. We also got a small Pepperoni, Sausage, and Mushroom Pizza so we would have plenty of leftovers.

The manager remembered us from last year, and gave us a very nice door prize donation. Or maybe it was just a way to get me out of the place.

On another note, I found out that mounting the 12 volt satellite power plug in the outside bay has another advantage besides convenience. Since I can now keep power on the satellite all the time, this means that if the antenna is moved or jostled from any reason, like this evening’s high winds, the antenna instantly realigns itself and doesn’t lose the signal.


February 27, 2013

I’m sorry, but I dabbled . . .

I didn’t mean to. It just happened. I got bored and started back on my To-Do List. Mostly just a bunch of small things that had been hanging around on the list.

Tomorrow I’m going to drain and flush out the water heater for this year. Normally I get it done before we leave Houston, but I ran out of time this year. But now it’s bubbled to the top of the list, and its time has come.

About 1pm I got the slow cooker out and started up a batch of Chicken Tortilla Soup using the chicken breasts that I poached yesterday. Two boxes of chicken broth, two poached chicken breasts, two cans of Rotel HOT Diced Tomatoes with Habaneros, one can of black beans, two diced fresh jalapenos, and a handful of chopped fresh cilantro. And of course, shredded Monterey Jack Cheese on top, as well as a generous supply of tortilla chips.

On another note, a while back when I did several posts about “assault weapons” and “high” capacity magazines, one of things I mentioned was the fact that banning so-called high capacity magazines was useless.

I mentioned that I could change a magazine out in about a second and several people took issue with that. They said that most people couldn’t do this.

Well, check out this video demonstration put on by an Indiana Sheriff with an experienced male shooter and an inexperienced female one. Check out the link below.

In a couple of cases they both were actually faster on the smaller mags, probably because they were easier to handle. So much for a “high” capacity magazine ban.

Tomorrow we’ll probably make a run over to Boerne to pick up some things I need for my projects.

February 27, 2014

. . . like a Red Rubber Ball !

Well, after 3 days of cold, nasty weather, today it warmed up and the sun came out. And it looks like it’ll stay that way for the next few days. Mister will certainly be happy, being able to go outside again.

I once again spent most of the morning going through more boxes and bins, and even started on some the things from the truck.

Slowly, but surely.

Later in the afternoon, I worked on a client’s email problem. His webmail account would no longer receive any email. Nothing had come through since this past Wednesday afternoon, and everything bounced back to the sender.

A little research showed me the problem. The client had never emptied his trash folder, and had finally exceeded the mail account’s total size limit. Emptying the trash folder permanently deleted the old emails and got the account working again. Unfortunately any emails that came in during this outage were lost. He’ll know better next time.


I also set him up with an iDrive online backup account. His Carbonite account had run out a couple of days ago, and rather than renewing Carbonite, I switched him over to iDrive. They’re cheaper, and also allow you to backup all the machines on your network, not just one. But even more important, iDrive saves the last 30 versions of every file. This would have helped a lot in the past when a corrupted database file was backed up by Carbonite before the damage was known, so the backup file was corrupted too. Luckily I was able to repair it and recover the data.

About 3 pm Jan and I drove down a few spaces and picked Debi and Ed Hurlburt, and we all headed into La Grange to have dinner at Sealand Seafood and Steak.

Sealand Seafood turned out to be very, very good. Much better than you would think for a place 100 miles from the ocean. All of us had some combination of fried catfish, fried shrimp, and fried oysters. All good, especially the catfish. We’ll definitely go back.

Debi has a very popular blog called Debi’s RV Cooking, while Ed has one called Ed’s RV Tips, In addition, they both have Facebook areas under the same names. And I’ve added their blogs to the Blog List on this site too.

After dinner, we stopped off at the HEB in downtown La Grange for a few things before we headed home about 7 pm, finishing up another very nice day.

February 27, 2015

Four Generations . . .

When Jan and I were going through some old papers recently, we came across this photo showing four generations of our family.

Four Generations

On the bottom right, that’s Jan’s mother Trudy, then Jan to her left, top left is our daughter Brandi, and then our son Chris’ daughter Piper to her right.

Unfortunately this picture is not dated but it looks to be around 2003 or so, since Piper looks to be 8 or 9. Jan’s mother Trudy died in 2007 while visiting her daughter Bev down in Florida.

For those of you who tried the Outrigger’s link yesterday, there was a problem with it. Here’s one that works correctly. Outrigger’s

Even thought it never got much above 40 degrees today, I did manage to get some stuff done outside, including crawling under the rig and spraying levelers with silicone spray, and a few other things, before I started to lose the feeling in my fingertips. Coming back in, I rinsed out the foam filters for the ceiling AC intakes, first time since right before we started gate guarding this year.

Heading out about 4:30, we stopped by the park office to remind them we’ll be leaving Sunday morning so we can settle up on the electric usage. Wanted to check because in past years the office wasn’t open on Sunday, but now it is, so it shouldn’t be a problem.

After the office, we headed over to Monterey’s Little Mexico in Dickinson to meet our friends Bob and Maria for one last dinner together before we leave.

But finally we had to say our goodbyes and headed out. I needed a few things so our next stop was the Home Depot right up the road, and then the Fry’s Electronics a little further up the road.

Then heading home, we stopped at Kroger’s and HEB to stock up on some of their whole bean coffees before we leave here.

Tomorrow morning we’re meeting Chris, Linda, and Miss Piper for breakfast, after which Jan and Piper are going to do the Mani-Pedi thing. For my part, needing neither a mani, nor a pedi, I’ll be getting the truck washed and waxed, and a tire changed.

Jan got these shots of some of the birds she feeds out in front of the rig. If she doesn’t get out there early enough, they stand around and squawk and quack.

Jan's Birds 1

Jan's Birds 3

For her part, Jan is convinced they they’re all going to starve when we leave.

February 27, 2016

The Cat with No Name . . .

I was up early this morning hoping to get my new washer drain pump configured and installed. Or at least configured. Thanks to Jan’s bright idea about rolling the washer into the bedroom when we travel tomorrow, I don’t have to get it re-installed today.

As I stood there staring at the pile of parts I bought at Home Depot yesterday, I tried to remember what I had worked out in my head, but when I did, I didn’t like it anymore. So I started holding parts together until I came up with a new way to do it, and one that was actually better.

Starting with the old pump input/output manifold,

Pump Input-Output_thumb[2]

I cut off the input end to use,

New Washer Pump Install 2_thumb[1]

along with the original drain hose.

New Washer Pump Install 1_thumb[2]

By cutting the hose down, and then inserting the plastic piece into the hose end,

New Washer Pump Install 3_thumb[1]

it gives me something to clamp down on. Then after soaking it in boiling water, I slipped a ring of heavy vinyl hose over the end to bulk it up,

New Washer Pump Install 4_thumb[1]

so that it would closely fit into the rubber hose coupling shown before.

New Washer Pump Install 5_thumb[1]

This finished up the input part of the pump.

Next I cut off the small end of the I/O manifold and inserted it into the end of the drain hose that exits the washer.

New Washer Pump Install 6_thumb[1]

This let me use another piece of the black rubber hose to make a new coupling for that also. Then I placed it into the washer to check it out. There will be clamps on the smaller coupling as well.

New Washer Pump Install 7_thumb[1]

Then to check out the placement, I temporarily mounted the pump in place to the angle stock and hooked up all the hoses. At this point I couldn’t go any further because the screws I had to mount the bar stock with weren’t big enough so I planned to pick some more up this afternoon while we’re out to dinner.

New Washer Pump Install 8_thumb[1]

But right now it looks like it will work, but I was out of time.

While I was working on this, Jan was outside bailing out the backset floorboards in the truck. On our trip home last night we both remarked how fresh the newly washed laundry in the backseat smelled.

But as it turns out, it wasn’t the laundry, but the laundry soap, liquid Tide to be exact, that had leaked out onto the floor. So Jan was trying to scrape up as much as she could and funnel it back into the jug. I’m still not sure how we’re going to get it all out of the carpet. But I know when I do, it will be really, really clean.

About 4:15 we left the park, followed by Brett and Frankie O’Neal, all heading into Conroe to have dinner at El Bosque Mexican Restaurant.

Finally I was able to get my Fajitas Fix with an order of their delicious Fajitas Poblanas.

El Bosque Fajita Polbanos 2_thumb[1]

And it was $4 cheaper than my Fajitas at La Brisa the other day, for a lot more meat.

La Brisa Fajitas_thumb[1]

And this time we had a big group, the infamous El Bosque Nine shown below.

The El Bosque Nine_thumb[1]

Left to right: Rick and Janice Binns, my empty chair, Brett and Frankie O’Neal, Debi and Ed Hurlburt, and Randy Lazarine.

After our great meal together, Jan and I drove over to the nearby Wal-Mart to pick up some prescriptions, and a couple of other things, including the new bolts I need for the washer repair.

Karma the cat doesn’t know she’s Karma the cat. She has no recognition of any name, Karma, Emma, the name on her second hand tag, Hey You, or anything else. This, even though we use her name every time we talk to her, or feed her.

She does respond when she sees me making coffee, because she knows that creamer is in her immediate future. Or if she hears the “Squuaakk” noise of whipped cream, but that’s about it.

Well, she does understand “NO!”, mostly I guess because when she starts to scratch on our leather captain’s chairs, I yell “NO!” and squirt her with a spray bottle.

Tomorrow we’re heading back to the Colorado River Thousand Trails for another two weeks. Looking forward to it. Of course I’ve still got my on-going washer repair to finish up, but I’m actually looking forward to that too.

February 27, 2017

On The Road Again . . . And Again . . . And Again . . . And . . .

Once again we were out the door and on our way back down to the Clear Lake area, getting to the Monterey’s Little Mexico in Dickinson, our lunch stop before Jan’s oncologist appointment at 1:45.

We’ve been eating here for about 20 years, with many of the same people working here for more than 10 years, which really tells you about how a place is run.

Julie, our favorite waitress has been here for almost 15 years,

Montery's Julie and Jan

way before we started  RV’ing in 2008.

We both ordered our usual bowls of the delicious Chicken Tortilla Soup to start off.

Monterey's Chicken Tortilla Soup

And when they say ‘Chicken’ they mean it. This soup is chock full of big chunks of chicken, not just a few shreds.

And unlike a recent bowl at Los Cabos here in Columbus, Monterey’s version DOES NOT have any veggies in it, like the zucchini and carrots in Los Cabos’ version.

Next up we split an order of Beef Fajita Nachos, which didn’t last long enough for a photo

But here is where it would be.


Finishing up and heading north we made a quick detour to the Bucee’s on 96 to pick up a few of our favorite Cranberry Walnut muffins for breakfast on the road. Then it was on back up to Webster and Jan’s doctor’s appointment.

Normally her oncologist’s visits go pretty quickly, but this time the doctor was running late so Jan was in there for a little over 2 hours. No problems, just a slow doctor.

Then it was back on the road heading home to Columbus, and hoping to stay ahead of the going-home traffic, which we mostly did.

We did make a quick stop at the O’Reilly’s Auto Parts in Columbus so I could pick up a new blower motor speed control module for the truck.

Blower Speed Control Module

The old one has cracked and we presently only have one blower speed for the AC, so this should fix the problem.


And guess what? Tomorrow morning we get to make the same trip back down to the Clear Lake area once again, this time for our GP appointments. Oh Boy!

Blog reader Tom Cheshire asked about how we keep our diesel tank filled on the road, and any problems we’ve had.

First off, we’ve got a 150 gallon diesel tank so we can go about 1000 miles without topping off, still leaving ourselves a 250 mile ‘cushion’. And we only occasionally fill up on the road during our travels.

Normally when we’re parked somewhere for a few days and want to fill up, we’ll scout out places as we’re driving around, looking for a place we can get in and out of with no problems. It may be a Wal-Mart or a Sam’s Club, or even a convenience store with diesel and easy access.

And if it looks like it will be easier, Jan will just follow me in the truck to the station, and then we’ll hitch up afterwards.

If we do need to fill up on the road, we usually just stop at a Pilot/Flying J/Love’s/TA etc. Many of them have separate pumps for RV’s with both diesel and gas, so you can stay out of the truck lanes.

Hope this makes sense. If anyone has any more questions, let me know.

February 27, 2018

My Eyes, My Eyes !

I spend the morning finally getting a chance to install my new LED headlights. And after a small glitch, it went really smooth.

The headlight units came out pretty quickly once I had the correct size socket.

LED Headlights Upgrade 1

Then the old bulb came out and I was ready to install the new one.

LED Headlights Upgrade 2

But here is where the glitch came in. The locking ring that holds the bulb in place would not fit over the fan unit. Digging into the footnotes in almost too small to read manual, I found that I had to disassemble the bulb unit by removing the O-ring and two small screws.

LED Headlights Upgrade 3

This let me place the locking ring between the fan and the bulb and mount it in the headlight unit.

LED Headlights Upgrade 4

Once I got the headlight back in place I turned on the headlights and took a look.

LED Headlights Upgrade 5

The difference between the old and the new was amazing, and the photo doesn’t really show the difference. It actually hurt my eyes to look directly into the new one.

Since I now knew the trick, the 2nd light only took  me about 10 minutes to finish it up, and I was done. Unfortunately it’ll probably be a few days before we can try them out at night.

While I was outside I took care of a few other things, like checking the truck’s oil and water, finally installing the rig’s 2018 tag stickers, and digging out my water heater cleaning wand, so I can flush out our water heater in the next few days.

Later, about 2pm, Jan and I headed out for the afternoon. Our first stop was for linner at the Cheddar’s in Webster, a local favorite of ours. Jan got her regular Key West Chicken and Shrimp, and I got the Veggie Platter with a bowl of Chicken Tortilla Soup.

Great as usual.

Then it was on up to the I-45/Sam Houston Tollway interchange to check out a new RV Park. A few weeks ago, coming back from Brandi’s in Katy, we look down from the high exit ramp from SHT onto I-45 south, we looked down and saw an RV park down there, a big one.

We were going to check it out coming back from Brandi’s this past Sunday, but it was pouring down rain so we put it off.

Since the park is so new it didn’t show up on any apps, so we didn’t even know the name of it, which turned out to be USA RV Resort I-45, one of several that they own in this area.

Turned out to be a very nice park, with 157 all-concrete sites,

USA RV Resort 1

a lake, a pool, walking path,

USA RV Resort 3

and a club house with a fitness room and a laundry.

USA RV Resort 4

But with all these nice amenities comes a high price – $675 + Electric for the 50 x 20 Back-In Sites, and $795 + Electric for the 80 x 20 Pull-Thru Sites.

Yikes! That’s almost twice as much as we’re paying here.

Think we’ll stay right where we are.

Our next stop was WalMart for a lot of stuff, and then down to Dickinson to see if they were doing work on the Monterey’s that got flooded out in Harvey. The answer is NO.

Finally, coming back up to Victory Lakes, we made a stop at the El Pollo Loco there to pick up soups and salads for later meals.

Tomorrow Jan has what she hopes is her last checkup as part of her kidney stone episode.

Fingers crossed.

February 27, 2019

Just How Much Is ‘Free’ Shipping?

If you haven’t been able to tell, we’re having blog problems again. But this time it’s a problem with the Brava theme that I use.

It was working last night and early this morning, but died later in the morning. It’s apparently theme-related, since temporarily changing to a new theme fixes the problem. Temporarily, I hope!

I’m working on it.

Yesterday I talked about buying something online from WalMart and picking it up at our local store, using their ‘Pickup Tower’. What we ordered was a couple of 18 fl.oz. bottles of ACT Cinnamon Mouthwash that Jan likes and can’t seem to find locally. Or, at least that flavor.

And when I looked on Amazon, I found two bottles for $15.79 with ‘FREE’ Prime Shipping. But when I looked online at WalMart I found the same two bottles for $7.71. With free shipping and pickup at our local store.

And even better, I get to play with the Pickup Tower.

So I’ll start looking for stuff more on WalMart now, before I order from Amazon.

The other day I showed you what our actual room, #110, looks like on the Viking Longship Skirnir.

Viking Skirnir Cabin 110 - Category E - Standard Stateroom 110 on

But this room diagram will give you a better idea of the actual layout of our 150 sq.ft. room.


Pretty much like a regular hotel room, but with a better view, and much better food.

Speaking of the view, besides the two Explorer suites on our ship that go for $10 – $15,000/person, there are two other room choices – the French Balcony ones, and the Veranda models.

Apparently, the French don’t really have balcony’s I guess, because these rooms don’t have a balcony either.

Viking French Balcony

They just have a sliding glass door that opens onto a railing, so all you can really do is stick your head out and look to the bow and stern of the ship. And for this great ‘perk’, you get to pay an extra $3000/couple.

And, even better, at 135 sq.ft., your extra $3000/couple, gets you a room that’s 15 sq.ft. smaller than ours.

Such a deal!

Now, if you want to pay an extra $4200/couple for a Veranda room, you get an actual balcony big enough to hold two chairs.


But at least for your $4000+, at 205 sq.ft., you do get a slightly bigger room than ours. But you pay about an extra $75 per sq.ft. for that privilege.

In addition, I find it interesting, and reassuring also, is that the online reviews have travelers saying that they wouldn’t pay for these room upgrades next time, since they either spent their time on deck, on excursions, or asleep in the room.

Or even better, they were staring at a close-up view of the side of the dock where they were moored.

Last night Jan and I watched the premier episode of Whiskey Cavalier, ABC’s new spy action, comedy series. And it was really good.

A lot of action, a good story line, and great chemistry between the stars, a male FBI agent, codename ‘Whiskey Cavalier’, and a female CIA agent, codename ‘Fiery Tribune’.

Along with 3 other team members, they’re forced to work together, while spitting and sparring with each other along the way. Kind of reminds me of Moonlighting, I guess.

They could use a better advisor concerning some of the spy tradecraft, but you can’t have everything.

Check it out.

Tomorrow we’re making the trip up to Trinity, TX to visit our long-time friends, Janice and Dave Evans, and see their new home since they came off the road. Also joining us will be the other third of the Conroe Bunch, Debi and Ed Hurlburt of RV Tips fame.

Really looking forward to it.

February 27, 2020

The Big 300 . . .

I guess I’m pretty much back to normal, or at least as normal as I’m likely to get anyway. My head is still a little stuffy, but I feel good, my cough is gone, and my stomach muscles are only slightly sore.

I did get my 16GB of RAM for my new computer installed yesterday and the speed is noticeably faster. In fact maxing out your computer’s RAM is the cheapest/quickest way to get a speed boost.

Jan and I headed out about 1pm for lunch at Yummy Yummy’s once again, and 4 miles after we left home we hit the big 300.

Our Dodge Dakota’s odometer went from this:


To this:


And this doesn’t count the 90,000+ miles being drug around behind the RV.

It just keeps going and going and going . . .

Now on to 400,000.

After lunch we drove over to the big HEB on League City Pkwy to stock up on a few things, especially some more Lola Savannah Texas Pecan Coffee.

HEB Lola Savannah Texas Pecan Coffee

Yes, their Texas Pecan coffee has large chunks of real pecans in it. In fact I seen complete halves as I’m pouring it into the grinder. Really good, and the checkout clerks always comment on the smell when we’re checking out.

Really good.

February 27, 2021

5th Times The Charm?

After I got caffeinated this morning, I went outside to remove the hose splitter on our water hookup. I had tried to replace it a while back with a new, high-flow model.

Outside Faucet Repair 1

But I found it stuck, and was afraid to brute-force it in case I snapped off the plastic feed pipe.

But when I turned it back on after the Big Freeze, it was dripping slightly, and I couldn’t get it to stop.

So today I decided to just cut it off by using my handy-dandy Harbor Freight Cut-Off tool.

Harbor Freight Cut-Off Tool

I carefully sliced a groove in the coupling trying not to cut in the faucet threads. Then once I got the cut made, I used a big screwdriver to pop it open enough to get it off.

Outside Faucet Repair 2

Before I put the new one on, I coated both sets of threads with silicone grease, so hopefully I won’t have this problem again.

Outside Faucet Repair 3

With Jan a little under the weather this morning, I was on my own for our errands today, so I was on the way up to the WalMart in Alvin to once again try and pick up an order I had placed online yesterday.

And this time it all worked. I pulled into Pickup #5 slot, used the app to tell them I was there, and about 10 minutes later they were putting the stuff in my car. Finally it worked.

Then it was on over to our dry cleaners on FM528 to pick up the quilt we had cleaned there. Next up I stopped off at the office to pick up an order that had come in for Jan. And before I put in a pickup order for the Jason’s Deli down in  our area. Their Broccoli-Cheese soup is Jan’s go-to under-the-weather food, so I got that, and a 1/4 Turkey Muffuletta for her, and a couple of bowls of their Spicy Tortilla Soup for me.

I normally get their Southwest Chicken Chili, but it didn’t show up on the online menu, so I got the Tortilla Soup instead. However when I picked up the food, I asked and found out that they did still have the Chicken Chili, but for some reason it didn’t always show up online. So next time I’ll know.

After Jan and I had our lunch, I went outside to take a look at the new toilet that’s been still sitting in its box on the patio since it was delivered. And as soon as I lifted it out, I saw a possible problem.

The original toilet in our RV was a 4 bolt model, but the new one we replaced it with in 2010 while we were in Las Vegas, was a 2 bolt model. I kludged it together at first, but then Dometic finally came out with an adapter plate for it.

But this new one is back to being a 4 bolt model, so guess I’ll also have to remove the adapter first. I don’t think I had to permanently modify anything to install the adapter, but we’ll see.

Very funny article about a guy who decided to try RV’ing, in the middle of the winter, in Pennsylvania.

I stayed at a campground for the first time in a camper van during the off-season, and I didn’t think it was worth the price

When I first rented the van, the owner quickly walked me through the process of plugging the van into a campsite’s amp, but in practice, I couldn’t figure it out. I ignorantly figured that the amp setup was just an optional choice since the van already had solar panels, so I decided to forgo plugging in the vehicle.

Later, I learned just how wrong I was.

February 27, 2022

Soup’s On . . .

Well, the whole Black Bear Diner didn’t work out. Jan was a little under the weather today, so I did the HEB shopping this afternoon and then brought her home her version of Chicken Soup.

Jason’s Deli’s Broccoli Soup,

Jason's Broccoli Cheese Soup

along with a 1/4 Roasted Turkey Muffuletta Sandwich.

Jason's Turkey Muffuletta

But since Jason’s discontinued my fav White Chicken Chili a while back, I passed on anything from Jason’s and had one of the fresh Meal Simple soups that I picked up at HEB.

HEB Meal Simple Soup

They have a whole line of these, and every one we’ve tried has been delicious.

My favorites are the Corn Chowder above, the Loaded Baked Potato, Chicken and Sausage Gumbo, Chicken Tortilla Soup and . . .

Well, actually everyone I’ve tried has become a new favorite. And there’s about two dozen more for me to try.

Since I installed my new La Crosse weather station out in the living room yesterday, I decided I wanted something back in bedroom to keep an eye on the nighttime temps. I thought about moving my old La Crosse unit back there, but it was just more than I wanted.

So I ordered this one last night and it came in this afternoon. And it gives me just what I want.

La Crosse Small Weather Display

La Crosse Personal Weather Station

It’s about the size of a large cell phone and fits on the wall right next to the bed.

These are the 20 most common passwords leaked on the dark web.

  1. 123456
  2. 123456789
  3. Qwerty
  4. Password
  5. 12345
  6. 12345678
  7. 111111
  8. 1234567
  9. 123123
  10. Qwerty123
  11. 1q2w3e
  12. 1234567890
  14. 0
  15. Abc123
  16. 654321
  17. 123321
  18. Qwertyuiop
  19. Iloveyou
  20. 666666

If you use any of the above passwords for any of your online accounts, you’d be wise to swap them out for something more secure. Cybersecurity experts often recommend picking something longer than the minimum number of recommended characters, and using uncommon characters – like punctuation marks or other symbols – in place of letters and numbers, to make your password harder to guess.

Lookout also noted that the majority of people reuse passwords for multiple accounts, which is a practice you should avoid whenever possible. If hackers can get into one of your accounts, you can at least make it harder for them to get into the rest of them.

In this same vein, I’ve received two emails this last week, one from Amazon, and another from one of my banks, Chase. Or at least, they said they were from them.

Both of them said that my account with them had been suspended. And both gave me a link to log and fix the problem.

Yeah, right!

The real giveaway was the email address.

Amazon-Support.Center. [email protected]

Note that the address has nothing to do with Amazon. And the link I’m supposed to click to restore my account goes here.

Again nothing to do with Amazon.

And it was the same with the one from CHASEBANK. At least that’s how it was listed in the From: area. But all my actual emails from Chase just say they’re from Chase.

CHASEBANK [email protected]

And also, though these emails came through about 12 hours apart, the base address,, is the same.

And of course, the link address has nothing to do with Chase either.

Yeah, that looks like something I’d want to click on.

As they used to say on Hill Street Blues –

‘Let’s be careful out there.’