Daily Archives: March 21, 2023

Got Torched . . .

Lunch today was at Torchy’s Tacos this time, with both of us getting our usual’s.

Jan got her two Chicken Fajita Tacos,

Torchy's Jan 20230321

while I got my usual, the Jalapeno Cheese Dog and the Brushfire, with Jamaican Jerked Chicken and Mango.

Torchy's Greg 20230321

Always delicious.

Then after checking out the nearby upcoming location of our new In-N-Out Burger, we drove down to League City to check out the new Gordon’s Food Service there.

Called a cross between Sam’s Club and Costco, at least for food and food-related items, there is no membership fee.

Ten things to know about the Gordon’s Food Service

Starting out, it looks like a normal smallish grocery store.

Gordon's 1

with a nice selection of fresh produce.

Gordon's 6

But then you start seeing the big No. 10 cans of staples,

Gordon's 2

And the shelves of 50# bags of Tortilla Mix

Gordon's 3

and even Popcorn.

Gordon's 4

And everyone needs a 5# bag of dried Chilis, all different types.

Gordon's 5

And there were two complete aisles of packaging, plates, bowls, cups, flatware, take-out containers, etc.

Today was just a ‘scouting’ expedition at Gordon’s, since we didn’t buy anything this time. But we will be back.

Since I was talking about hippos the other day, I thought I’d post this video of an angry hippo who does not like lions in ‘his’ river.

Thought For The Day:

Just ignore reality. There’s nothing you can do about it anyway.

March 21, 2009

It’s a beautiful day in the neighborhood, a beautiful day…

We’re still having great weather here in Gulf Shores. It’s pretty much staying in the low-mid 70’s in the daytime and the mid 50’s at night.  Just about perfect.

We’ve decided to stay another week after this Tuesday, which will make us a full month.  That should put us out of most of the Spring Break crowding, I hope. We’ll see.

Jan and I had our Franco’s leftover pizza for dinner tonight.  We ate it outside on the picnic table that’s part of our site.  We also had a delicious fruit salad that Jan made yesterday from fresh fruit we purchased.

Tomorrow we’ve been invited to join our neighbors for a Potluck/White Elephant lunch at 2:00pm out in the center of the cul-de-sac we’re parked on.

We’re supposed to bring a dish to share and a wrapped White Elephant object.  We don’t know if we auction it off, or trade it, or what. I guess we’ll find out tomorrow.  I volunteered a certain black cat to be named later, but Jan just gave me “The Look”.

We all remember “The Look”, don’t we?

We have decided to take the last of our Big Daddy’s Northernmost Southern BBQ beans to the dinner.  They were so good that we bought a couple of gallons in Fairbanks, AK to freeze and bring back with us. The beans seem to have almost as much meat in them as beans. I hate to see the last of them go.

March 21, 2010

Brunch and Pollo…

Today was fun mixed with some work. We went to the Breakfast Brunch at Boulder Station Casino. Once again, it was a great meal for $11 each.

After spending almost two hours laughing and talking over brunch we drove over to Lowes to pick up some parts.
About 6:45pm, it was off to El Pollo Loco for some great citrus-marinated grilled chicken. This west coast chain became one of our favorites when we were out here two years ago and we were looking forward to trying it again.

Finally, about 7:30 we headed back to the rigs for the night.

Tomorrow I’ll be working on our rig, trying to replace the seals and the flush ball in our toilet.

Oh boy!

March 21, 2011

Sandstorms and Grilled Onions . . .

We started off this morning with coffee and no satellite TV. The high winds that were rocking the coach and rattling the awnings had blown over the sat dish. The ground was too hard to stake it down so it was ripe for being blown over.

A little before 11 I went up to the office to re-up for another week, but the office was closed, so I’ll try again later.

The wind had picked up some much that I finally went out and let the awnings in, as they were getting really noisy. Then pretty quick after that the sand storms started sweeping across the fairgrounds, in some cases blocking out the rigs parked right across from us. Hope we still have a paint job left when we leave here.

A little after 1 I talked with a friend of mine who owns an A/C company to get a quote on installing a new system in our house in Friendswood, TX. I hoping he can give me a better deal than the original quote I have. Then after talking with him I emailed him a copy of the quote that I had.

About 2 I drove back up to the office to pay up for another week here. The sand was blowing so hard I figure I was lucky to find our coach again.

Later I talked with Thousand Trails about the membership that we’re going to be taking over, to be sure the transfer is in the works. We’re hoping to get it completed before we leave here the first part of April. We’ll see.

About 4:30 we headed over to the Five Guys Burgers and Fries. This was our first visit to Five Guys, and it was as good as we had heard. The burgers were delicious, and I like the fact that all the fixings, including jalapenos, grilled onions, and grilled mushrooms, were free.

Coming home we stopped by Lowe’s to pick up a piece of transition strip to see how it’s going to work between the Corian tile in the kitchen and the new Allure laminate in the living room.

I’ve got pretty much all the carpet up under the driver’s seat, and now need to decide where I’m going to make the joint between the laminate and the carpet that I’m leaving under the driver’s feet.

Getting home, the winds had died down, so I took a few minutes to get the sat dish up right and aimed. Can’t miss Monday night TV.

Tomorrow we plan a day trip down to the Tombstone area, and then possibly on to Bisbee.

March 21, 2012

It’s a Two’fer . . .

But wait, there’s more.

When I got up this morning I found two more mousies in my traps. Didn’t realized I was hosting a whole village in here.

Then a little later I was back in the bedroom and heard Jan scream. Running out, I found her pointing at the bottom drawer of the cabinet under the stove and yelling “Mouse, Mouse”. If there had been a chair nearby, she would have jumped on it.

So it turns out we have at least 5 visitors.

Later I took up all the traps and rebaited them, with cheese this time. But while I had the entrance to the access area still open, I heard a noise inside the cabinet, and looking in, I saw Mister back in there checking things out. I was kind of hoping he’d find something, but no luck this time.

Mister Mouse Hunting

Finally getting Mister to come out, I put the traps back out, with one of them in the drawer this time.

About 5:45pm Jan, and I, along with Tom and Barb Westerfield, drove up Houghton Rd to eat again at Luckie’s Thai, our favorite local Chinese place, and one of our all-time favorites anywhere.

And Tom and Barb actually had Thai. But the rest of us ate from the Chinese side of the menu. And if anything, it was better tonight than last time. And of course we had plenty of leftovers, so lunch tomorrow will be great too.

Getting home around 7pm, I checked my trapline and found I’d bagged another one.

Don’t know if it’s the same one Jan saw this afternoon, but that’s a total of five now.

I think I need to throw Mister back in there again. Make him earn his keep.

March 21, 2013

Lazy Days and Marathon Nights . . .

About 1pm Jan and I headed over to the FMCA Rally being held at the Paydays RV Campground here in Tucson. We got a day pass to check out the vendors and see if they had anything new or interesting.

Jan did find a couple of things that caught her eye, and I wanted to talk to the Blue Ox guy to see about them doing a  reconditioning on my Blue Ox Aventra Tow Bar. He gave me his card and said to call him tomorrow about 11am and he’d see if he could fit me in.

We also walked around  and checked in with some of the vendors we know from from other rallies. Jan said it was good to meet up with some of our RV friends because no matter where you go,  they always make you feel at home.

Before we left the park we drove around a bit. Back in 2007 we stayed here for a week while we were attending our first Life on Wheels seminar. Back then it was called Beaudry RV and we had rented a CruiseAmerica Class C and spent 3 weeks driving around the southwest to be sure we really wanted to start RV’ing.

Beaudry-LazyDays 2007 Site

And as it turns out, we did want to.

And here we are.

Before heading home we stopped off at the Target on Old Spanish Trail so Jan could add to her bracelet collection since she still had a little space left on the bracelet holder I showed you yesterday.

She’d seen these animal style bracelet and wanted to check them out. And since she like what she saw, she came home with all four.Giraffe Bracelet

Zebra Bracelet

Fish Bracelet

Elephant Bracelet

Getting home later in the afternoon we ended up watching a Warehouse 13 marathon on the SyFy channel. We missed a lot of episodes while we were gate guarding, so it’s nice to be able to catch up before the 5th season starts the end of April.

March 21, 2014

Two Nights in a Row . . .

About 10 this morning we got together for a while with Don and Darlene Couvillion before they headed back down to Alvin. We’ve really enjoyed getting to know them and look forward to catching up with them either on the road, or when we’re back in this area.

Later in the morning I worked on a few chores around the rig. Then after lunch I took a look at my slide shear pin problem.

Slide GearBox 1

The hole in the big gear is where the new shear pin goes, but the first problem is to get the other half of the pin out. Since the gear has slipped on the shaft, the hole in the gear and the hole in the shaft no longer line up. Which means that I not only can’t put the new pin in, but I can’t even knock the old one out.

I first tried jogging the slide in and out.hoping to luck on lining up the holes, but had no luck whatsoever, even after about 45 minutes of playing with it.

Next I looked to see if I could disassemble the motor and the gearbox and get to it that way. But seeing how everything was put together, it became obvious that I would have to almost completely remove the slide mechanism itself, so no go there.

Then later tonight in reading back over some of the Power Gear docs I found buried in the text the fact that the hole in the shaft for the gear lines up with the shear pin hole above it in the picture.

So I’ll give this a try tomorrow and see how it works. IF I don’t get rained out, which is a distinct possibility. We’ll see.

About 4pm Gregg and Lynette McHenry picked up us to go eat. And after deciding we all wanted Mexican, we ended up back at last night’s (for us, anyway) El Bosque. It was so good last night that we had no problem going back again.

Jan had her same Pollo a la Parrilla.

El Bosque Pollo a la Parrilla

I, on the other hand, tried the Mixed Fajitas.

El Bosque Fajitas

Both really, really good.

Gregg had the Carne Asada, and I believe Lynette had the Beef Fajitas, and we all agreed how good it was.

Finally leaving El Bosque, we made a stop at the Kroger’s Marketplace in Willis before finally getting back to the rig about 7:30 pm.

Another great day with good friends. Just another advantage to our RV life.

March 21, 2015

Well, I Liked It . . .

But Jan didn’t.

Several readers said they were signing up with the Good Sam RV Plus card after my recent comments. One thing I’ve noticed is that Pilot/Flying J’s are usually a good place to buy unleaded too. In many cases, they’ll have the cheapest in the area, I guess to attract more business outside their normal clientele, I.e. trucks.

For example, down in Tucson last week, the cheapest unleaded was around $2.23, but the Pilot/Flying J had it for $2.17. And with the Plus card, and its 5 cent discount, it was only $2.12. Nice.

As far as Jan and I, it looks like we’re pretty much over our colds, with just a few residual coughs every now and then. Good riddance.

Later Jan and I decide to have dinner at Dirteater Springs, a pub/grill that we’ve passed several times on Apache Trail, and always found it busy. And tonight was no exception.

Dirtwater Springs

I ordered a Grilled Rueben with homemade red sauerkraut, and hand-cut fries. Jan, unfortunately, for her apparently, ordered the Grilled Chicken Fillet with a Twice-Baked Potato.

Dirtwater Rueben

Jan started out with a salad that she said was really good, but it seems like it was downhill after that. For me, I had a cup of their homemade Italian Wedding Soup, also very good.

My Rueben was really good, crispy on the outside, and oozey good on the inside, but Jan was not really happy with her chicken.

Jan hoped to redeem her meal with their Pumpkin Pie for dessert, but that didn’t pan out either. On the other hand, I had their Caramel Apple Nut Pie, which was delicious. I guess it was just my day.

Dirtwater Pie

Hopefully, wherever we eat tomorrow will turn out better for her.

Tomorrow morning, around 11am, we’ll move about 4 miles away, over to the Countryside RV Park, where we’ll be for the next two weeks before heading up to the Verde Valley Thousand Trails.

March 21, 2016

Less is More . . .

At least, Less Wind is More Better.

Jan and I did our mile walk again this morning, but this time with almost no wind. Much nicer. As was sitting outside afterwards with our coffee.

I brought Karma outside on her leash for a while, but she’s still not very comfortable. Then when I put her back inside and leave the door open, she cries at the screen door and wants back out.

So then I bought her out and just held her in my arms for a while and she seemed pretty happy with that and didn’t struggle or try to get away.

While we were outside a lady came by on her walk, and seeing Karma, stopped to talk about traveling with cats, as she has one too. Unfortunately we didn’t get her name, so maybe she’ll stop back by.

After I worked on web stuff for a while, I spent the rest of the morning slogging through the truck electrical schematics, trying to make sense of them. The problem is that the schematics call parts one thing, but the text and the imprints on the panel covers call them by another name. But I finally got things straight in my head (well, as straight as things ever get in my head).

Dodge Dakota Schematic_thumb[1]

So later in the afternoon, I went back outside to follow up on what I’d learned. The first thing I did was pull out the relay labeled A/C Relay (which was labeled A/C Compressor Clutch relay elsewhere, which is what it is),

Truck AC Compressor Coil_thumb[2]

Since the schematic showed the contact was always hot, I used a jumper lead to bridge between the two marked contacts.

And heard the ‘Clunk’ of the compressor clutch coil as it pulled in. Things were looking up.

Removing the jumper, I started the truck, turned the AC on, and then replaced the jumper. In a few minutes my infrared thermometer showed I was getting 45 degree air out the vent. So now I know that part works, and I can make the AC work manually if I need to.

The next thing I did was pull out the the relay labeled Radiator Fan (which was labeled Condenser Fan relay elsewhere, which is what it is),

Truck AC Condenser Fan_thumb[5]

I now used a jumper lead to bridge between the two marked contacts here, expecting to hear something from the condenser fan, but I got nothing. Of course that could mean that the fan is dead, but I wanted to check further.

Since I was supposed to have 12v on the right hand contract I checked there with the voltmeter, and found 0 volts. So why?

Looking at the schematic it showed it should always be hot. The only thing between the 12v power bus and the relay is a 50 amp fuse that I had already checked a couple of days ago. But since that fuse was the only thing between the 12v and the relay contacts, I checked it again.

This fuse is one of those newer type cartridge fuses that I’ve run into before.

Cartridge Fuse_thumb[2]

But when I pulled the fuse out, I noticed something else.The manual showed this fuse as a 50amp version, but the one I pulled out was a 40amp one. Now I know that I’ve never replaced this fuse, so I assume the first owner, which was T-Mobile, did it somewhere along the line. Or maybe it just came that way.

And when I checked it this time, the fuse was bad. So why was it good the last time I checked it?

As I picked the fuse back up I noticed it rattled, so this time I shook it slowly as I checked it, and every now and then it would read good. So I now know why I don’t have 12v at the relay.

But I still wanted to check the fan, so I used a longer jumper wire to bridge directly from the battery to the relay contact.

Truck AC Fan Bypass_thumb[1]

And when I did, the condenser fan rumbled to life, emphasis on ‘rumbled’. It sounded like it was grinding walnuts, which explains the noise I was hearing earlier.

So now that I know where all the problems are, my next chore is to see if I can change out the condenser fan without removing the radiator.

Here’s hoping.

As I hoped, Al Hesselbart, RV Historian Extraordinaire stopped by the blog to add and correct my info on the Silver Streak Sterling in yesterday’s blog.

You did not go quite far enough in your evolution story. In 1967, the motorized division of Streamline was sold to LK Newell and rebadged as Newell Coach who made the first diesel pushers including my 1978 Newell Coach Home.

Also Byam’s time with Curtis Wright was not pre Airstream it was mid Airstream since Airstream was started in 32 and shut down by material shortages during the war and he worked with Wright for about 14 months before restarting airstream.

It’s nice to be needed.

Hopefully we’ll get to see Al again later this year.

March 21, 2017

Better As The Eagles . . .

Oil Field Gate Guarding for Fun? and Profit

Wednesday, March 22nd

11:30a – 12:30p

Old Pueblo Rm. 4

Mark your schedule for our seminar

Jan and I headed over to the Escapade about 11:30 so I could take a look at a computer problem that Charles Yust was having, and Jan could catch with some more of our old friends.

Then later I talked with a vendor, pricing  new window awnings for our coach. I quickly came to the conclusion that I can do them myself much cheaper. In fact for $70 I can order new fabric on line and ready to install, while if I have them do it using exactly the same fabric, it would be $170. And that’s with ‘free’ installation.

I was happy to see my Amazon orders showed up this afternoon, with one of them being a new latch for our rig’s screen door. The old one died a few weeks ago when the small flange that retains the spring broke off and let the spring go flying off, releasing the latch handle.

Screen Door Latch Repair 1

It took me a while to locate a new one, and that was by accident when I was looking for something else. Which seems to happen a lot.

Screen Door Latch

RV Screen Door Latch

So it was quick work to remove the 4 screws, put the new latch in place, and screw it down.

Screen Door Latch Repair 2

Done. Now just waiting  for the next thing to break.

About 6:15 Jan and I headed back over to the Fairgrounds for the 7pm Door Prize Announcements, and then the evening’s entertainment, Woodie and the Longboards.

Woodie, et al., are both a Beach Boys, AND an Eagles tribute band. But Jan and I both agreed that they made better Eagles than Beach Boys.

First off, they were all excellent musicians, especially the lead guitar. Great licks and riffs. And strangely enough, they all harmonized as the Beach Boys pretty well. But only one of the band members actually sounded like one of the Beach Boys on his own.

Escapade Woodie and Longboards 1

And oddly enough, his name was Grant Wilson. Maybe a grandson? And with his slightly shaggy blonde hair, he even looked the most like a Beach Boy

But their second set as the Eagles is where they really came into their own. And the lead guitar really got to show off his talent, since the Eagles were much more into heavy duty guitar in their music than the Beach Boys.

And this time the vocals were much closer to the Eagle’ sound, dead on in some cases. My test is to close my eyes and just listen, and my ears will tell me who I’m hearing.

Escapade Woodie and Longboards 2

Between the two sets, they went about an hour and 45 minutes.

In fact, Jan and I both agreed that this was the best ‘non-star’ show we’ve seen at ANY rally. I say ‘non-star’ to differentiate between tonight’s group and the likes of Bob Newhart and Tanya Tucker, who we’ve seen at other rallies.

All in all, a really great show.

March 21, 2018

Oreos and Marshmallows . . .

Not much new at work today, just the regular day to day crises and potential catastrophes.

I even had to work late to get a machine repaired and out the door with UPS.

Coming home, I got a call a little before 5pm from Brock’s Car Care letting me know that our Dodge Dakota is ready to go. We plan of picking it up tomorrow. Jan (and 1) will be happy to give Chris his truck back. Being a full size Chevy, it’s a lot harder to climb up into, especially since it doesn’t have any step rails.

A number of you have contacted Jan concerning SPAM Facebook messages you’ve received.  But it was not just FB, but also email, and even a phone call.

I got an email from Jan addressed to me, about 5 people I recognized,  and about 20 others that I had no idea who they were. And one of our blog readers/FB friends actually got a PHONE call from an unknown Jan White. At least that’s what showed on his caller ID.

I’ve contacted FB and they’re looking into this, so stay tuned.

I just finished up Nomadland, the book I mentioned before about RV’ers and how they live and work on the road. I was initially a little leery about it, thinking it was a put-down on full-time RV’ers, especially workampers.

But it was really a look inside the lives of people somewhat on the down and out, many forced into the RV life by some combination of divorce, job loss, bad economy, pension loss, or in some cases, all of the above.

Some of the subjects in the book went from 7 figure salaries down to living in the back of a beat-up van. But they all seem to have a never give up attitude, no matter what.

I was impressed by how the author got into the lifestyle, spending over 3 years following RV’ers around the country in an large old model van, rigged up for full-time living. She did the Quartzsite thing 3 times, plus worked at Amazon and harvested beets. So she pretty much covered it all.

A really interesting book.

A couple of days ago I got the notice from Verizon that the long-awaited Android 8.0 OS (Oreo) was now available for download to upgrade my Samsung Galaxy S8+ phone. Android 6.0 was Marshmallow and 7.0 was Nougat. I think I detect a pattern here.

It added a number of nice features, including camera software improvements and facial recognition encryption, among many others. The only downside seems to be that it confused some of my ringtones and notification sounds, but that was easy to fix. Now I’ll spend the next several days checking out the new stuff.

March 21, 2019

Good To Go . . .

We were up early and out the door by 7:15, heading up to Friendswood for our yearly checkup/pill renewals with our long-time GP.

As much as we(I ) hate getting up early, we like doing our doctor’s appointments this way to get in and out quicker. Seems like as the day wears on, they fall further and further behind, so that your 1pm appointment, that you arrive for at 12:45, becomes a 2pm call-in, if you’re lucky.

But today was even quicker than usual. Although Jan’s appointment was for 8am and mine was for 9, I got called in first, at about 8:10 and then Jan was called in around 8:20. And then we were both out by about 9:15. Really quick.

I was hoping to get off my two blood pressure meds this year, like I got off Metformin last year due to a 5.7 A1c. So I had been checking mine at home, with my readings all in the 120/70 to 125/75 range. But the kicker here is that I’ve been off my two BP meds for a month now.

As happens every year with our scripts, it seems like as they get moved around the country from WalMart to WalMart following us, we always seem to lose some refills along the way.  So when I ran out, I stayed out and didn’t call the doctor for an extra refill like we had to do for a couple of Jan’s.

So I was somewhat peeved, yeah, let’s go with ‘peeved’, when the reading on their automatic machine came up with 148/83. At this point I asked her to to do it manually, you know, the old fashioned way, where you use a stethoscope and actually listen.

And when she did this, twice because I don’t think she believed it the first time, it was 121/71 and 120/70. Now that’s better.

But my doctor wasn’t completely convinced, but she did take me off the Amlodipine, but left me on the Lisinopril, and said, “We’ll see”.

So I’m half way there. And we’re both Good to Go for this year.

Though we won’t get our lab work back for a few days, we’re not expecting any surprises. And we had promised ourselves that after being so good our diets, we splurge today over at Stomp’s Burger Joint in Bacliff.

But since we got done at the doctor’s so early we had some time to kill, so our first stop was at our favorite Ocean Express car wash near our old house. They do a great job and the truck always just glows in the sunlight.

Truck Washed

Not bad for a 15 year old truck.

Wish I could find out what kind of spray-on wax they use, so I could get some for the rig.

After killing some more time grabbing a coffee at Starbuck’s, as we didn’t have coffee at home this morning, we finally headed down to Bacliff and Stomp’s.

Now there was a time when I might have splurged with the Stomperado Challenge.

Stomp's Challenge

But those days are long, long passed.

Stomp’s standard burger patty is 8oz of pure Angus Beef, that’s ground to order, hand-formed to order, and cooked to order. Now that’s fresh.

So right off the bat you’re eating the equivalent of 2 Quarter Pounders with only slightly less bread. But as recently as last year, my go-to burger here was a Hog Wild Double. That’s with 2 – 8oz patties, or 1 pound of Angus Beef.

The ‘Hog’ part though, means that there’s some pork mixed in to the patty, specifically rendered bacon, so It’s not pure beef, but it really adds to the taste.

Now in my mind, I saw myself ordering my usual Double, but when I got there I realized the fallacy of that. There was no way I was going to be able to eat that much, especially since Jan and I were splitting an order of their ‘cut, battered, and fried’-to order Onion Rings. Did I mention ‘Fresh’?

Stomp's Onion Rings

So we both ‘wimped’ out and got our new normal burgers, Jan’s favorite Outlaw, with Cheddar Cheese, Grilled & Chopped Jalapeno And Onion, Salsa Picante Served On A Whole Wheat Bun with Mustard and Tomato,

Stomp's Jan

and my Hog Wild, an Angus Beef Patty Mixed With Rendered Bacon And Topped With Melted Cheddar Cheese Served On A Whole Wheat Bun With Mayo, Mustard, Lettuce, Tomato, Onion, And Pickle.

Stomp's Greg

And of course I had to bump it up a bit with some Carolina Reaper powder.

By the end we were so full that we were arguing over who HAD to eat the last Onion Ring. But we both lost, and had to split it.

Waddling out to the truck, we said we both ‘hurt’, but agreed it was a ‘good hurt’. And tomorrow, back on our diets.

That’s about it for today. I’ll catch up with the rest of this afternoon in tomorrow’s blog.

March 21, 2020

So Did I Have It?

We had thought about getting started on the new shed today, but it started out cold, in the low 60’s all day, and then became cold and rainy. So maybe tomorrow when it’s supposed to be in the high 70’s and sunny.

We spent this afternoon streaming stuff on Curiosity Stream, a great source of very well-done documentaries. I mentioned CS a while back when it was a great deal at only $20.00 a year. But now it’s even better. A 1 year subscription is only $12.99.

Started by the guy that started the Discovery Channel, the shows covered a wide range of subjects, from how medieval castles were built, to dinosaurs, and outer space, and much, much more.

Today we watched a really good documentary on Pompeii, excavating and reconstructing new areas previously buried under the lava and pumice. And besides all the great video, one new fact came out.

It’s that the date of the eruption, always thought to the August 24, 79 A.D is almost certainly wrong. It seems that our dating of the eruption comes from only one source, the writings of Pliny the Younger. He witnessed the volcano from across the bay, but he didn’t actually relate the date to anyone until about 20 years later. And those writings no longer exist. So what we’ve got are translations of transcriptions, and transcriptions of translations.

The new date is two months later, on October 24th. The August date had been questioned before, due to indications of autumn fruits being stored and the remains of recent fires in heating braziers, I.e. the fall season.

But what nailed it was an inscription written in charcoal on a wall. The writing, which was buried in the pumice, gave an October date about 7 days before the eruption.

Really interesting. Check it out.

For dinner tonight we flipped down our Ninja Foodie Digital Air Fryer


that I got Jan for Christmas. It’s really great with our limited counter space, because though it’s a full size oven, it flips up out of the way when it’s not needed.

Ninja Foodie Counter

When Jan was up at Brandi’s, she did Chicken Breasts breaded with crushed Pork Rinds to keep it Keto. So we decided to try it with Chicken Tenders, the only raw chicken I could find at WalMart the other day.

We dipped the tenders in egg whites, also the only thing egg-wise I could find, and then shook them in a plastic bag with the crushed BBQ pork rinds, and put them in the grill at 400° for 25 minutes, turning after 10 minutes.

And they came out Delicious. Crispy, crunchy, and tender. Turns out the Pork Rinds make a really great breading.

Pork Rind Chicken Tenders

And keeping with the Keto meme, Jan served it with Cauliflower Rice.

Pork Rind Chicken Dinner

Never having had the Cauliflower Rice before, I was surprised that it was pretty tasty. But since I like cauliflower, the vegetable, I guess it’s not that surprising.

March 21, 2021

It Works!

After I got especially caffeinated this morning, I got up on the stepstool and changed out my old AC control box for the new one. Only took about 10 minutes, and that included crimping on a new spade connector on one of the thermostat wires.

Then before I mounted it back up inside the AC unit, I plugged it back in the bedroom, lowered the thermostat setting to 70° (it was 72 in the coach), I switch the thermostat to Cool . . . and waited.

And nothing.

For about two minutes, and then it started up and ran fine until it shut off. Apparently this unit has a longer compressor lockout timer than the old box. This keeps the compressor from restarting too quickly after it stops, like if the power glitches, for example, which is bad for the compressor.

This part done, I decided to bask in the glory of a job well-done, and goof off (and drink more coffee) until later.

About 1 Jan and I drove down to the WalMart in La Marque to see if the had any of the Sterlite File Boxes that we’re using to organize things in our storeroom and storage shed. They had two yesterday at the WM up in Webster, but the lids were missing.

And luckily, I found 4 in stock, and with lids. So grabbing them up, I went to check out, and found a line with a lady with a half full basket already checking out, and a couple with about 10 things in theirs.

OK, a fairly quick checkout.

But what I hadn’t anticipated was that she was apparently checking out for about 17 different people. Or at least it seemed that way.

She would put two or three items on the conveyor, wait for them to be rung up, then she would open her purse and start counting out change. Or sometimes sorting through a stack of credit cards until she found the right one.

Then she would put her reading glasses on and carefully peruse the receipt for a bit.

Somewhere in here, the young lady in front of me, turned back, and as I just shook my head woefully, she rolled her eyes.

Finally after about 15 minutes, she was finished and on her way. Now I realize she may have been buying for a bunch of people at a senior citizen center, but WalMart never seems to have enough lanes open anyway.

So maybe they show have separate lanes for 5 orders or more, as well as 15 items or less.

Just sayin’

Then it was on up I-45 to have lunch at Los Ramirez Mexican, one of our favorite local places. The place really busy, a lot busier than previous Sunday afternoons. Just as good as always.

Finally before heading home, we made a HEB stops for a few specific things that WalMart didn’t have yesterday

Getting home a little before 4pm, it seemed time for a nice nap. And it was.

After I was up, I finished the install of the AC control box, mounting it back up inside the AC unit,

New AC Control Box Installed

and then got all the covers back on and buttoned up. Finally I turned it on and let if run for a while bringing the temp down to about 70 with no problems.

It works!

March 21, 2022

An Arm and A Leg . . .

Yesterday was pretty laid back, starting with lunch at Gator’s once again. Jan got her usual Grilled Chicken Strawberry-Walnut Salad,

Gator's Strawberry Walnut Salad

while I got out of my Loaded Baked Potato Soup rut and got the ‘Egg In The Hole BLT Bagel’ once again, but this time with a side of Bacon instead of Fries.

Gator's Egg in the Hole Bagel 20220320

Gator's Egg in the Hole Bagel 20220320a

Always delicious!

We finished up with an HEB stop before heading home for the day.

This past Friday morning when I was on my way into work I noticed that that Chevon station on the corner had diesel for $4.69. But by the time I came home that afternoon their diesel was going for $4.99.


Of course that’s not as bad as when we were on our way up the AlCan Hwy in April 2008.  At one of those little towns out in the middle of nowhere we paid a little over $9 a gallon (based on liters) for diesel.

Double Ouch!

Or it could be like this, I guess.

Chevron Arm Leg

Had a nice surprise show up in our bank account the other day. Our $600 deposit was finally returned by Holland America. We had an Alaskan Cruise booked by back in September 2020 which was WuFlued Out. So we rebooked it for May 2021, transferring all our deposits to that trip. Which in turn, also went away.

Actually I had forgotten about our deposits, so it was a nice surprise.

Money is always a nice surprise.

I got this package from Amazon last night. Looks like it’s a little overkill on the packaging.

Amazon Big Envelope

The address label is bigger than the purchase.

Tomorrow we’re heading up to Conroe to meet up with Debi & Ed Hurlburt and Janice & Dave Evans at the Golden Corral there. Both couples are long-time RV friends, all of whom are off the road and in Sticks & Bricks now. It’ll be good to catch up again.

Finishing up, I mentioned the other day that I couldn’t post any photos from our visit to Twin Peaks because they were too ‘cheeky’. But I found this one on FB so it should be OK.

Twin Peaks St Patty's Day

What’s kind of ironic is that you can see more skin than this any summer weekend on Galveston Beach.

But then they’re not refilling your iced tea.