Daily Archives: November 8, 2023

Loco Chicken . . .

Jan’s doctor’s appointment got pushed back this afternoon, so rather than eat afterward, we drove over to Pearland early so we could have lunch first, at our favorite El Pollo Loco. We first came across El Pollo back in 2008 out in California during our first year RV’ing. And we’ve been happy to see them expanding eastward since then.

We both got our usual 2 Piece White Dinner with Beans and Broccoli.

Plus Jan got one extra dinner to go for her to have on Friday.

The thing that makes their chicken so good is that it is soaked in a citrus marinade overnight and then grilled over open flames.


One thing that I was surprised to learn is that El Pollo is actually owned by Denny’s, and has been since 1983. They also own several other chains, including  Carrows, Coco’s, Keke’s, and a couple of others.

Tomorrow it’s our annual sojourn up to the Nutcracker Market in the NRG area. And as part of our visit, we’ll have lunch at Katz’s Deli once again.

Is There Anything It Can’t Do!

Viagra could cut the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by 60%, according to a new study.

Researchers from Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York found that Viagra (sildenafil), a drug most commonly used to treat erectile dysfunction, blocks an enzyme found in the brains of those who suffer from the disease.

A study released in January also found that Viagra lowers the risk of heart disease in men by up to 39% — and it even helps reduce the risk of early death.

Viagra users were 17% less likely to suffer heart failure and had a lesser chance (22%) of developing unstable angina, which is when plaque in the coronary artery doesn’t allow oxygen and blood to flow to the heart.

Men who used those drugs also had a longer life span on average. Throughout the duration of the study period, their risk of early death dropped by 25%.

No Comment.

Finally, an EV that makes sense. At least to me.

And Dodge too, I guess.

In 2025 Dodge is coming out with a hybrid Ram 1500 pickup with a 635hp AWD powertrain with a small V6 running an onboard generator.

The 2025 Ram 1500 Ramcharger is the brand’s first plug-in-hybrid full-size pickup truck. It shares a platform with the electric Ram 1500 REV.

A 70.8-kWh battery provides an estimated 145 miles of electric range and feeds a 663-hp all-wheel-drive powertrain, with a V-6 spinning a generator as a backup.

With a full battery and fuel tank, Ram is targeting up to 690 miles of combined driving range; it can also tow 14,000 pounds and handle a 2625-pound payload.

I’ve always thought this was the way to go.

And hybrids are even showing up in the landscaping arena.

Thought For The Day:

Karma would just take off a finger!


And Now On To Today’s Retro-Blogs.™

November 8, 2009

The Gateway Arch…

Today is our last full day in the St. Louis area, so we left the coach about 10:30, heading about 60 miles away to St. Louis and the Gateway Arch.

But rather than going straight to the Arch, we stopped at a nearby Hooters for a hot wing fix. But even from there, we could see the Arch.


After lunch we drove to the nearby park.  Walking from the Arch parking garage we could see the Arch thru the trees.



The Gateway Arch was designed in 1947, but construction did not start until 1963.  The Arch is basically built inside an imaginary square.  It is 630 feet high and 630 feet wide at the base, making it the tallest monument in the US.  Finally finished in 1965, it is covered in sheets of stainless steel, making it shine like a mirror.

Each triangular base is 54 feet on a side and had to be positioned on the ground within 1/64 of an inch or the Arch would not have met at the top. That would have been a bummer.

And even getting this part right, they still had problems. During construction, both legs were built up simultaneously. When the time came to connect both legs together at the apex, thermal expansion of the sunward facing the south leg prevented it from aligning precisely with the north leg. This alignment problem was solved when the St. Louis Fire Department sprayed the south leg with water from firehoses until it had cooled to the point where it aligned with the north leg.


We entered the Arch thru an underground passage that took us to the Arch Visitors Center.  To do this, we had to pass thru airport-style security, doing everything except taking our shoes off.

Arch Entrance

Another fascinating fact about the Arch is that there’s a Ferris Wheel built inside.  Well, kind of.  It consists of 16 cars like the one below, 8 on each side.  Each car holds 5 people and makes the trip to the top of the Arch in a little over 4 minutes.

Because you are going up and around the Arch, the cars are gimbaled like a Ferris Wheel so they always stay level.


And the 5 people who cram into these are going to get real friendly.  Luckily, going up it was just Jan and I.


Once we got to the top we were in a narrow open area with 16 small (7” x 27”) windows on each side. They let us look out over the city.


There’s a plaque at the top showing the height.


The windows look even smaller from the ground,

Arch Windows

But the view is spectacular!

ArchCity 1

ArchCity 2

And here’s some more pics.

Arch Pic 1

Arch Pic 2

The trip back down is faster, about 3 1/2 minutes.

Arch Pic 3

I didn’t take this picture, but thought it was neat!


Before we left the Arch area, we purchased a National Park pass that will give us a 50% discount at other National Parks.

Leaving the Arch we did some shopping and then stopped off for supper at Sweet Tomatoes, a soup and salad place we had last eaten at in Fort Myers, FL.  They had some of the best soups I’ve ever tasted.

Tomorrow we’ll head down the road to Branson, MO.

November 8, 2010

Landon Time . . .

This morning started early, at least for me, when we left the rig about 8:15 heading up to Clear Lake to Jimmy’s Egg for breakfast with our daughter Brandi, her husband Lowell’s parents, Lendell and Sonja, and of course Master Landon. But we got a pleasant surprise when our son Chris and his wife Linda showed up too.

This is Sonja and Lendell’s last day here before they head back to Oklahoma tomorrow, so they’re getting in all the Landon time they can/

JimmysEgg 1

But somehow Landon manages to sleep thru it all.

JimmysEgg 2

Getting back to the rig a little before 11, Jan and I took our walk and then we both puttered around the coach for a while, taking care of some things.

Then about 1 pm a nap seemed in order, especially since I got up so early, as I said, at least for me, so I napped.

About 3 pm we drove up to Kemah so Jan could get her hair cut, and then afterward we drove down to Dickinson to have ‘lupper’ at Monterey’s Little Mexico.

I had my usual Chicken Tortilla Soup and Jan had the Chicken Ixtapa, which is a grilled chicken breast with sautéed vegetables and charro beans.

We got back to the rig just in time for another beautiful sunset over Dickinson Bayou. It doesn’t get much better than this.

GB Sunset 1

GB Sunset 2

GB Sunset 3

That’s about it for today.

November 8, 2011

Gain an hour, lose an hour, gain an hour . . .

or, Whipsawing through the time zones.

After a great Mexican meal at Tequila’s in Centralia, IL, and a great time with Jan’s sister, Debbie and her family last night, we wanted to get an early start this morning on a long day.

We had about 380 miles to travel, so we were up at 6:30 (OMG!) and on our way by 7am.

WallyDocking in Vandalia

Since I had hooked up the toad last night after we got back, a quick walk-around and off we went.

Since we left Indian Lakes Thousand Trails Monday morning and ended up here, we’ve taken a 170 miles trip and turned it into a 615 mile one by zig-zagging through four states and in and out of three time zones.


I think all my atomic clocks have just given up trying to set themselves.

We had light rain for the first couple of hours, but with the clearing, the winds came, and never left. Several times I thought I was going to change lanes without ever moving the steering wheel

About 10am, and 25 miles back into Indiana, we stopped at a Flying J / Denny’s for breakfast. One thing kind of funny here is, that despite Pilot and Flying J merging and combining their stations, this stop had a Pilot and a Flying J across the street from each other, and both very busy.

Right after we got back on I-64E we started seeing signs saying I-64 was closed at Louisville, and we would have to take I-265N to I-65S back to I-64E. Turned out not to be a big problem and only added about 10 miles to our trip.

Found out that they had closed the I-64 bridge over the Ohio River going into Louisville about two weeks ago due to cracks being found in the bridge structure. They say it’ll be closed until March 2012 for repairs.

Coming through Lexington we got on I-75S, and about 50 miles later, we pulled into the RV park at the Renfro Valley Entertainment Center, home of the Kentucky Music Hall of Fame and Museum, about 4.

Started in 1939, the Center provides a home for great classic country, southern gospel, and mountain bluegrass music, along with shopping and a number of restaurants. But right now, they’re just running on weekends through Dec. 17th. This past weekend they had B. J. Thomas and Gary Puckett performing here. Sorry we missed them.

Renfro Valley RV

We’ve pretty much got the park to ourselves, except for maybe one other RV. But for $16 a night for 30amp full hookups, it can’t be beat.

After we got set up, we drove down the road a couple of miles to McDonalds for supper. I’d been wanting a McRib since they came back out, so tonight was my chance.

It was good, but it needs to be hotter. Maybe they need to offer jalapenos, or maybe next time I’ll take some of my Ghost Chilies with me to put on it. That would do it.

November 8, 2012

Very Small Owls . . .

Our do-nothing day started with some of the delicious banana nut bread that my Aunt Virginia gave us before we left Athens, along with some really good Vanilla Crème/Chocolate Almond coffee.

It was really nice to just sit around and do absolutely nothing, and have nowhere to be. Later for lunch Jan made cheese toast using some of the sourdough bread that Aunt Virginia also gave us. Really good.

After lunch I got on the phone to American Coach to get some help with the starting problem I had last week. Bypassing the Battery Control Center temporarily fixed the problem and also isolated the problem TO the BCC,

And with their usual great support, American Coach emailed me a copy of the BCC manual, and also the name of an outside tech that specializes in the unit. They said he would be glad to give me any help I needed.

Kudos to American Coach.

We have 4G here at the park with a speed of about 11.5 Mbps. Not bad at all. But even better is the 3G speed that I use the most. At 2.5 Mbps, it’s one of the fastest I’ve seen. Very Nice!

About 4 Jan and I headed out to our favorite local wing place, the one and only Hooters. And in this case, it’s the world’s smallest.


It’s actually built as part of a double-wide trailer complete with the wheels still underneath. Supposedly it can all be towed away in case of a hurricane heading this way. Don’t know how well that would work. But that’s the story anyway.

Getting back home we spent some more time catching up on some of our DVR’d shows. Then about 8 Jan heated up our dessert.

After we finished our supper at Lulu’s last night, we were too full for dessert, so we got a piece to go. And of course it had to be their Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding.

Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding

It’s really hard to describe how good this is. I mean, it’s bread pudding made with Krispy Kreme donuts.

How could it not be delicious?

November 8, 2013

All the Difference in the World . . .

It’s amazing what a 10′ x 20′ piece of tarp will do to keep things warm.

Gate Guard Tarp

Wednesday night was pretty cold. It had been colder last week (42 degrees), but Wednesday’s 53 had a 10-15 mph north wind combined with it. And it just cut right through you. Plus it was actually blowing the heat from the two electric heaters away from me.

So the tarp really helps, though it does make our ‘encampment’ look a little more ‘Beverly Hillbillyish’. We probably need to add a still to complete the look.

But, hey, it’s an oilfield.

Yesterday was grocery day in Pleasanton, so as usual I stopped off at McDonald’s to bring home lunch. And maybe things are looking up there. Last week I waited 26 minutes for an Iced Coffee drink, 4 pies, and 3 packs of Apple slices.

Today the same order only took 8 minutes. Maybe the fact that they seem to have a new manager is what made the difference. We’ll see next week.

One nice thing about the time change is that I get to see a lot of really great sunrises.

Gate Guard Sunset

I’ve added two more recipes to the Jan’s Favorite Recipes tab: Squash Casserole and Broccoli Casserole. These, along with her Sausage Balls, are her go-to holiday recipes, the ones that everyone wants her to bring when we get together with friends and family.

Wrapping up, I just had to post this. If only to make you see what I cannot unsee.

It probably should have gone under my What Were They Thinking tab, but I’m not sure any ‘thinking’ was involved.

The link is for The 29 Whitest Family Photos for All Time.

This is No. 2, and one of the few that I feel comfortable posting on the blog itself.

Winne The Pooh Family

And I don’t think I’ll ever get No. 13 out of my mind. And No. 6 is right up there.

See for yourself and don’t say I didn’t warn you if you end up gouging your eyes out.

But as a disclaimer, I have to inform you that Jan and I are also on the Awkward Family Photo site too. Here’s the photo that got us there.

Check out the link below and be sure to read the comments down below, including a couple that I made explaining things.


And here’s the story behind the photo after we first posted it in 2009.


At least we’re not wearing pink fur suits.

How can $40.00 bankrupt a multi-billion dollar company? Here’s how.

In the late 90’s, a Blockbuster customer returned a video one day late and was charged a $40 late fee. That really pissed him off. His name is Reed Hastings, and instead of just stewing about it, he went out and founded Netflix. Which killed Blockbuster. Then Redbox drove a stake through its heart.

Blockbuster, once having over 9000 stores, and now owned by DISH, just announced that they are closing their last 300 stores.

November 8, 2014

Hot Hands and Old Dogs . . .

Well, our frack started winding down today, just as another is getting close to starting up. In fact once again we may have two fracks going on at the same time.

Oh boy. More 14 to 15 page days.

But at least right now we don’t have all the sand trucks coming in, so we’re down to 7-8 pages. A nice change.

Most of you will remember Old Dog and New Dog. They would visit us at our other gate across from the drilling rig. Well, as it turns out Old Dog’s name is Russell, and he’s a rig dog.

Gate Guard Dog

He lives and travels with the drilling rig. He adopted them a while back and has been with them ever since. On one move a few months ago, the rig crew was on the road and suddenly discovered that no one had Russell with them, so one guy turned back to look for him. He didn’t have to look far because when he got back to the pad, there was Russell waiting patiently by the wellhead. Smart dog.

The fact that he’s a rig dog might be why he was so protective of us, running off New Dog whenever he could. I guess Russell considered us part of the rig crew.

New Dog, the Great White Pyrenees, does apparently live around here and still comes around to visit us once a week or so. He’s kind of muddy in this photo.

New Dog

But it’s kind of funny that he still seems to look around for Russell before he comes over to us.

I tried out one of the HotHands’ hand warmers last night and it really worked. I say I tried out ‘one’ of them, because, although they come two to a package, one for each hand, I only need one at a time.

I have a very warm glove for my left hand that does a good job of keeping it warm. However on my right hand I wear a thin cotton work glove with the fingertips cut off. This is so I can write and turn log pages without taking my glove off for each vehicle. So I just tuck one in my right glove and it really warms up my hand. I’ve found that it’s almost too warm to keep in my palm, but on the top of my hand, it’s perfect. And luckily the hand warmers are sealed individually within the packages so I can use them one at a time.

On the UPS front, apparently they don’t work on weekends since no one answered when I called. So my Amazon order that should have been here this past Wednesday is still in limbo.

November 8, 2015

Jan Says It’s . . .

14 Days and Counting!

By this time in two weeks we’ll be parked at the Lake Conroe Thousand Trails for 12 days before we move over to the Colorado River Thousand Trails for 14 days. Then it’s back and forth every 14 days as far as the eye can see. Well, at least until sometime in the March – April timeframe.

The reason we have the initial 12 day short stay is that back in late July/early August I booked us bouncing between Colorado River and Lake Conroe every two weeks from the end of August (in case we didn’t get a gate) until March (when we plan to head back out for the year). And it just so happens that, lucky for us, our time at Lake Conroe starts on the Friday before we leave the gate on Sunday. This means we only have about a 160 mile run down to Lake Conroe instead of 280 miles to the Colorado River TT in Columbus.

Today for lunch, Jan wanted to feed her hot dog craving, so around 11:30 I headed into Carthage to the Sonic to pick up her fix. Mine too, of course. But before I stopped there, I went on into downtown to pick up a couple of things from the True Value Hardware, only to find they were closed on Sunday.

I guess that explains why the Ace Hardware, that I drove past to get there, had an overflow parking lot. But then they didn’t have what I needed when I checked there on Friday.

I realize businesses can run their stores as they see fit, but I’m not real happy when it inconveniences me. Just sayin’. LOL

Coming into town, I noticed they finally got the new Little Caesar’s Pizza open, and it was really busy with a lot of cars out front and a long line at the drive-thru. Jan had been talking about pizza, so I swung by and picked up a menu on the way.

Sonic was our usual order, with Jan getting a regular Chili Cheese Coney and a Corn Dog, and I got a New York Dog and a Corn Dog, and we shared an order of their Ched’R Poppers. Great as always.

But I do wish I could get them to special order the coney on mine for me. My favorite way to cook a coney is to drop it in the deep fat fryer until it floats. It gets a crispy, almost blackened, crust on it, and it’s hot and juicy inside. Really, really good.

But they won’t do it. I guess they’re afraid of contaminating their fry grease. That’s why you don’t fry onion rings or fish in the same grease where you do your fries. But they fry the corn dogs in there, so why not pretend it’s a corn dog without the breading. And we never had a problem with that at our restaurant.

Now with the weather getting colder, it seemed a good time for soup and sandwiches, so last night for dinner Jan made grilled cheese sandwiches, and heated up some of the Campbell’s Slow Kettle Tomato and Sweet Basil Bisque that we bought out in Prescott, AZ this spring.

Campbell's Slow Kettle Soup

We noticed Sam’s Club had 4 packs on sale for $1.99 so we bought one to try it out. And it was probably the best ‘canned’ soup we’ve ever eaten. When we checked at Wal-Mart, we found the individual cans sold for about $3.00. So we went back the next day and bought all 8 packs Sam’s had left in stock. And even better, the price had dropped to $1.89. We bought all of them because we’ve learned from experience that if you wait too long on a Sam’s Club sale, it probably won’t be there when you come back. And they had a lot less of them that day than the day before.

I did figure out the reason for the sale, and that was that the Best If Used By Date was later this year. But that seems to mostly be a ‘Use It Now or Throw It Out So You Can Buy More Date’

My CAPTCHA login program on this blog is apparently working great, since I’ve not had a single failed login attempt in several days. But it is nice to see that I’m not the only one having this problem. Here’s what you see when you log in to the South Dakota website to renew your license plates.

SD Drivers License LogIn

Apparently I got the answer right.

Wrapping up, for most people it seems like the World Wide Web has always been here, and I guess if you’re young enough, that’s true. But the Web actually had a beginning. And that was at the CERN research organization located outside Geneva, Switzerland.

Now we’re not talking about the Internet. Although it seems these days the ‘Web’ and the ‘Internet’ are used interchangeably, they’re actually two separate things.

The ‘Internet’ started in the late 60’s with a few computers linking several universities. The first real consumer access came in 1979 with the startup of Compuserve, who offered email, real-time chat (called IRC chat), and the Internet Newsgroups.

I  was first online a few months later with my Exidy Sorcerer computer and one of those 300 baud acoustic modems that you stuck your phone handset into.

But the World Wide Web began on August 6th, 1991, when Tim Berners-Lee created the very first webpage, written in HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language), a language he wrote especially for the Web. And that very first webpage still exists, and can be still be seen at its original URL address.


It’s a plain Jane page of links to other pages he created to show what could be done.

And look at what it’s become.

BTW Tim Berners-Lee didn’t like the acronym ‘Web’. He wanted it to be called ‘W3’. I guess sometimes even the father doesn’t get to name the baby.

November 8, 2016

&$%#*& !

I knew it!

It always seems to happen.

Just as soon as I put the washer compartment doors back on from last month’s washer/dryer repair, the dryer up and dies.

No heat.  Zip, Zero, Nada, Nyet.

Luckily the free washer/dryer building is just right across the street, so I’ve got a little leeway to get ours fixed.

The last time I had this problem was in January 2013 when it turned out to be the thermal Over Temp fuse.

Dryer Thermal Fuse -  New

Splendide Dryer Repair

The repair stuff is down toward the bottom of the blog.

Hopefully it’ll be that simple again. But it still means I’ve got to pull it back out again.

Our Mr. Coffee coffee maker has been doing a lot of gurgling lately, taking a longer than normal time to make our morning coffee. So yesterday I decided to run the Clean cycle on it.

You start off by pouring 20 oz. of vinegar into the reservoir and then select the Clean function. It then brews around 15 oz. through the system, sits for about 20 minutes letting everything soak and dissolve the calcium. Then it starts up again and brews the remaining vinegar.

After that you run a full 12 cup pot of plain water through the system. Then you do the vinegar thing all over again

When that’s done, you finish up by doing TWO 12 cup pots of plain water.

And this morning it brewed much faster and much quieter. Nice.

Yesterday morning I emailed our invoices into SiteWatch for the last two weeks. Jan had 1 and I had 3, because we have separate invoices for each gate we worked. We submit the invoices on Monday and then get paid by direct deposit the following Monday.

Some readers have commented on our blog and on Facebook about Roadside Assistance companies like Good Sam’s and Coach-Net. We’ve had both over the last 9 years, usually depending on who was the cheapest when it was time to renew, and it would be difficult to rate one over the other.

Of course your mileage may differ.

We’ve had two long tows with our coach. The first one was in 2008, our first year on the road, when we were traveling from Las Vegas, NV to Flagstaff, AZ. The radiator fan on our Cummins diesel came apart, puncturing the radiator. We were flat-towed about 50 miles into Flagstaff directly to a big truck radiator repair shop.

Broken Radiator Fan

Thanks to the miracles of cellphones and the Internet, by the time the tow driver showed up, I had us a hotel reserved in Flagstaff, I had called Spartan and they were overnighting a new fan to the hotel, and I had the truck unhitched ready to follow the rig.

Taking about an hour to prep for the tow, the driver disconnected the driveshaft and hooked his truck air system into the rig’s tap in the compartment on the front driver’s side of the rig.

All told, it was about 4 hours from the time we called Good Sam until we were at the repair shop in Flagstaff. Not bad under the circumstances.

The second time was in May of 2015 when we had our infamous blowout, again traveling between Las Vegas and Flagstaff. (I’m starting to detect a pattern here.)

The closest tow truck was 90 miles away in Prescott, AZ. What showed up was a flatbed. It took the guy about an hour to get us up on the truck and we were on our way.

BlowOut TowTruck

Our blowout happened about 2pm and we were on the road a little after 6pm. Really good, considering the truck had to come from Prescott 90 miles away, drive 10 miles past us to get to an exit to turn around and come back to us, and then get us loaded up.

BlowOut TowTruck 2

We’ve also had a couple of short tows, both only about a mile or so, and both in Canada, again in 2008.

In addition, we twice had to be pulled out of the mud at RV parks. And we had good service every time.

One thing to know is that each Road Service company does not have its own group of tow truck drivers everywhere around the country. In most areas there is a pool with a central dispatch system for all the services like AAA,, Allstate, GEICO, Good Sam, Coach-Net, etc., all draw from this pool. So when GS needs a tow truck in a certain area, they call the dispatch operator who knows what’s available.

So,  if GS can’t get you a big tow truck for 5 hours, odds are Coach-Net can’t either.

And yes, you will hear horror stories from people with both GS and CN. Sometimes it’s just luck of the draw.

But now there’s a new player in town. SafeRide RV Motor Club with Roadside Assistance, sold by Chris and Charles Yust of C and C RV Insurance fame.

Because it’s also a ‘Club’ they offer a number of extra services, above and beyond what GS and Coach-Net seem to offer.

Check it out.

Didn’t hear from Todd today, so as it stands right now it looks like I won’t be working a gate tomorrow, unless it’s another last-minute night shift gate like last time.

We’ll see.

November 8, 2017

They’re Baacckk!

Well, the Comcast – Spectrum phone switch-over struck again. But now AT&T is in the mix, which only makes it worse.

Just about the time that things had settled down with our phone system, we lost our 800. number in a three-way handoff between Comcast, AT&T, and Spectrum, kind of a Mexican Standoff. Of Sheldon would want to ‘clarify nomenclature’ on that.

After going round and round for a while, we discovered the problem. And as has happened several times in the past, the problem originated with the previous IT. Apparently for some reason he went into a bunch of accounts and changed the PIN numbers on them

And without the pin number, the transfer couldn’t be made. After being on the phone for about two hours, my client had about given up. So I told him that every time he talked to somebody, and they couldn’t help him, ask to talk to their supervisor. And so on. And so on.

It took him about 30 minutes this time to get to someone who could help, and it should be fixed in the next 24-72 hours. We’ll see.

As part of my recent Instant Pot trials and tribulations, I did manage to order a silicone steamer basket for our unit.  Hope we can try it out soon.

Instant Pot Silicone Steamer Basket

Instant Pot Silicone Steamer Basket

For dinner tonight we drove over to the Victory Lakes area at i-45 and FM646 to have dinner. We were in the mood for burgers, but this time we went for Five Guys Burgers & Fries We hadn’t eaten at one in a number of years, so it was about time.

The burgers were great as always and the fresh-cut fries were delicious.

Five Guys Victory Lakes

We had been warned that a while back Five Guys had really cut back on the size of their fry orders. Previously the small order overflowed the bag and was more than enough for the two of us. So anticipating the cutback, we ordered the regular batch, and it was the perfect size.

Finishing up we made a quick next-door Wal-Mart stop for a few things, as well as gas on the way home.

I did track down a guy who may be able to make our new window awnings. I’m going to take one of our small rear window awnings into him and see what he can do. Hopefully I’ll be able to do it tomorrow.

Tomorrow we’re getting together for dinner with our son Chris, and hopefully some or all of his family. Looking forward to it.

November 8, 2018

It’s Beginning To Cost A Lot Like Christmas!

Today was the opening day for the Houston Ballet’s Nutcracker Market, and we were going to be there.

But our first stop was at The Egg and I up in Webster . . . for the second time this week.

What can I say? We really like breakfast.

We got up to the NRG Astrodome area about 10:45am, only to find a total mess.

The directions on our tickets said to enter the area from Fannin St., off the 610 Loop. So after you make the exit and then creep up to the turn onto Fannin, THEN there is a sign saying All Fannin Lots Were Full and use the lots on the Kirby side of the area.

Why wasn’t the sign out on the Loop before you got off so you can go on down to the next exit (Kirby) and get off there?

When we did get all the way back on the other side, we were able to pull right into the lot and get parked. Then seeing how far it was to the NRG Center (almost a mile) we flagged down a PediCab to take us right to the front door of the building.

The NRG area could learn a lot about managing large crowds from the Texas Renaissance people.

Our first quest was to find the Donne Di Domani (Women of Tomorrow) booth, more popularly known as the “Spaghetti Sauce Ladies”.

For 29 years the ladies have brewing up their special sauce which sells out earlier and earlier every year. Based on an authentic, old-world Italian marinara sauce recipe, all the profits go to local charities, over $2 million so far.

DDD Spagetti Sauce

Needless to say, we got the ‘Spicy’ version.

After meeting up with our daughter Brandi and her friends (more like ‘cohorts in wine-drinking’) we wandered up and down the rows for several hours, buying a few things here and there, and just enjoying all the Christmas hustle and bustle.

Nutcracker Market 3

Nutcracker Market 4

After taking another PediCab back to our car, we headed home about 2:30pm.

we decided to stop at the Webster Hooter’s for some wings. The last time we ate at a Hooter’s was in April 2017 when we were out in LA at the location across the street from Grauman’s Chinese Theatre while we were waiting for the TMZ bus tour.

Graumans from Hooters

We noted that they had really upgraded their menu, and it was even more so today.

Jan got her usual Chicken Strip Sandwich,

Hooter's Chicken Strip Sandwich

while I went with the 10 Wings, Naked, All Drums, Half Chipotle Honey and half Habanero BBQ.

Hooter's Naked Drums

Both of these sauces were all new, and both were really good.

Finally getting home about 4pm, and after a lot of walking, naps were in order

November 8, 2020

Another Shot . . .

I did take another shot at my leak problem this afternoon, by removing the oil filter, removing the 4 bolts holding the adapter head on, and then I got the adapter head off.

Leaving me with this on the oil cooler flange, just a few pieces of gasket.

Oil Cooler Flange 20201108

And this is on the adapter head.

Oil Adapter Head 20201108

The dark splotch at the upper left is just a shadow. I immediately sprayed Permatex Gasket Remover on the head and left it to soak while I went back under the rig to try and remove the flakey Helicoil.

But that didn’t go so well. I had planned to use a small, sharp pick to try and hook the coil and pull it out like I did the other one, but without any luck.

So now I’ll do some checking around to see the best way to get the coil out. But it’ll probably be Thursday before I get back to it.

November 8, 2022

Dorian Who?

Jan and I were out the rig door about 12:45, her first time out and about since last Thursday. Our first stop was long-time favorite (40+ years) King Food.

After our starter bowls of their Hot & Sour Soup, Jan got an order of their Crispy Honey Garlic Wings, two of which she graciously shared with me.

King Food Wings 20221107

I went with my usual Chicken with Hot Garlic Sauce.

King Food Chcken Garlic 4

And Jan of course got some of my Chicken.

Share and share alike.

Then it was over to the nearby Tuesday Morning so Jan could get the year’s Christmas cards. She’s found over the years that they have expensive cards at cheap prices.

Then it was right next door to the At Home store so Jan could look for some more Christmas stuff. We did come across this 3 piece 20 ft. Snowman set. It can be yours for only $350.

At Home Snowmen

Several of our readers wanted to know what I was talking about when I mentioned that Jan had a picture hidden away in an attic somewhere, keeping her young.

This refers to a book/movie called The Picture Of Dorian Gray. Written in 1890 by Oscar Wilde, it tells the story of a man (Dorian Gray) who makes a wish in front of a magical Egyptian cat stature/sold his soul to the devil, depending on whether you’re talking about the 1945 movie or the original book.

He wishes that his recently painted portrait would age rather than himself. So as he begins to lead a sinful and heartless life, his portrait, hidden away in an attic, becomes more and more distorted and demon-like.

Finally, realizing how evil he had become, he stabs the painting in the heart, hoping to end the spell, but instead dies himself, becoming the deformed body from the painting, as the painting becomes young and handsome.

Of course, Jan skips the whole ‘evil’ thing and just stays young.