The War Is Over . . .

And I Won!

Looks like I’ll be getting my Jan back tomorrow, as it seems like the Toilet War is over.

The new flange and flange seal are installed, and the hard part, hooking up the water line is done, with no leaks.

I’ll pick her up about 1 and we’re planning to have lunch at Grimaldi’s Pizzeria before we head back down to Santa Fe.

I did find some time recently to check out more shore excursions for our upcoming Caribbean Cruise this December on Royal Caribbean’s Jewel of the Seas. Certainly a lot to choose from, even though we’re concentrating on Mayan Ruins ones.

Can’t Wait.

Thought For The Day:

Listen, smile, and then agree. Then do whatever you were gonna do anyway.

Your Retro-Preview Highlights –

2009 – A/C Repair in Titusville, FL

2013 – Wildlife, Mt. Shasta, and Bend, OR

2017 – Bear Country USA and German Food

And Now On To Today’s Retro-Blogs.™

June 1, 2009

Home Repairs and a Scenic Drive…

Well, today turned out to be a handyman day.

Last night the rear AC that we normally only use at night quit cooling.  The fan would run, but no cool air came out.

So I got up early to go up on the roof of the coach to look at the unit while it was still cool.  After I got it apart I used a walkie-talkie to have Jan turn the unit on.  And I immediately told her to turn it off.

It was easy to see the problem. The time delay module on top of the start capacitor was turning red hot and starting to smoke.  After pulling the cap and module out, I found the cap had shorted and had started melting the module.

A little Googling told me this was a somewhat common problem for the Coleman AC units on our coach.  Some of the comments said they had trouble finding the part.

I decided to start looking at a small RV dealer down the road in Cocoa called Coastal RV and hit the jackpot the first try.

They had the part, and even had a 2nd one. I bought two figuring that I will need the other one sooner or later for our other AC.

It only took about 20 minutes to install the new part,  button everything up, and test the unit.  And it worked like a charm.  Hopefully, it will keep working.

This afternoon Jan and I visited the graves of her mother, father, brother, and niece so she could put some flowers on the graves and tidy things up. Jan’s mother died 2 years ago the 29th of May.

We also drove by her old house and were happy to see it was looking pretty good.  The new owners had made some nice additions.

After lunch, we drove back up from Cocoa on the Indian River Rd.  This road runs along the Indian River for about 8 miles north toward Titusville.  It’s a very scenic trip with a lot of nice homes mixed in with some old ones that have been there 50 or more years.

After that, it was back to the coach for a nap.

June 1, 2010

Last Day in Gillette…

Today is our last full day in Gillette, WY. Tomorrow we head south toward Draper, UT about 600 miles away. But as usual, we’ll take 3 days to do it.

Tomorrow night we’ll stay in Casper WY, and the next night we’ll be in Rock Springs, WY. Then on Friday we’ll be in Draper, UT for a couple of days, visiting our friends, Pat & Judy Benson.

We met Pat & Benson in Fairbanks, AK two years ago when we were workcamping up there. They were working for Holland America at the time, and were parked right next to us.

About noon we drove into beautiful downtown Gillette to try out the China King Buffet. Every now and then it’s nice to be really surprised. Although the online reviews for the place were really good, you never know.

But in this case, the reviews were dead on. The food was great, the selection was awesome, and the price was fantastic. If I come up with a few more superlatives, I’ll let you know.

First, the food. Every dish we tried was delicious. One of the ways we rate a Chinese restaurant is the Hot & Sour Soup. And the soup here was as good as any I’ve had. I actually had a second bowl of it for dessert.

Second, the selection. They had sushi, Mongolian Grill, Hibachi Grill, boiled shrimp, crab legs, probably a dozen different types of chicken, eight flavors of scoop-it-yourself hard ice cream, and much, much more. I think they have the largest selection of any Chinese buffet I’ve seen.

Third, the price. Back a week or so ago, after we left Westport, WA, we stopped at a Chinese buffet in Dupont, WA, about 15 miles outside Tacoma. It WAS good, although not as good as here. And it was $14.98 each for the buffet for a total of $35.20 with tax.

Our total today was $14.72. That’s $7.36 each, including drink and tax. You can’t beat that. I don’t know how they do it.

After lunch, I stopped off at Walmart for a couple of things after dropping Jan at Fashion Bug. She was looking for a dress for Brandi’s upcoming wedding. The ACA Rally had given all the women a gift certificate for Fashion Bug and she wanted to take advantage of it. And luckily she found just what she wanted.

Speaking of weddings, here’s a couple of photos from Brandi’s bridal shower this past Sunday.

The first one is Brandi on the right and on the left, her BFF, Shawna, who threw the shower for her.

Brandi and Shawna

And here is Brandi and her niece/our granddaughter, Piper. It’s easy to see how they’ve been mistaken for sisters.

Brandi and Piper

And here they are last July in New York City at Lombardi’s Pizza in SoHo, one of two places in NYC that claim to have originated pizza. Actually we liked the other one better, Grimaldi’s, down under the Brooklyn Bridge in Brooklyn.


Two real beauties!

Anyway, after we got back from lunch and errands, I went ahead and hitched up the truck for tomorrow since we didn’t plan on going out again.

As I said we’ll head out for Casper, WY tomorrow, about 185 miles away, on our way to Draper UT, just south of Salt Lake.

June 1, 2011

Landon and the Beachball . . .

Our daughter Brandi sent a video of Landon encountering a beachball. He was so enamored of it that they had to stop on the way home and buy him one. Actually they bought him two, since they figured Kitty, their 105 pound Black Lab would probably finish off one of them before too long.

Got up this morning about 10:30 to a cold, steady rain, a continuation of what had gone on pretty much all night. But a pot of coffee and a toasted blueberry bagel with cream cheese helped brighten things up considerably.

About 1 pm we headed out into a light drizzle to Village RV down in Roseville near Sacramento to pick up some 12v vanity mirror light bulbs, and looked for the type of tail light converter I wanted but they didn’t stock one.

Leaving there, we next headed to a nearby Sam’s Club to pick up some supplies, and then gas while we were there at $3.87 a gallon.

By this time it was after 3 and we were getting hungry so we decided on a nearby Fuddrucker’s. We always enjoy their burgers and this was no exception. I had the Ribeye Steak Sandwich and Jan had a burger. Since it started raining even heavier we sat around for a good while just talking.

After a while the rain stopped . . .  and then a 5-minute hailstorm started. After the hail stopped, it started raining again. You just can’t win.

Our next stop was a Fry’s Electronics we had passed on the way in. I just like to walk around since I wasn’t looking for anything in particular.

Next, it was off to Wal-Mart for some more stuff, and then finally we were on the way home. But before we got there we decided we needed a cappuccino fix.

Unfortunately, we didn’t think about it until we were out in the middle of nowhere, so we spent a fruitless 45 minutes or so looking for a place to get one.

It’s really amazing how desolate it is here between Sacramento and Yuba City. There’s just nothing. So we had to go cappuccinoless. We finally gave up and got home about 7:30 to be greeted by another surprise.

NO power. The storm had apparently knocked it out. Don’t know how long it had been off, but it didn’t come back on until almost 9. Of course, we did just fine on the inverter.

Just like boondocking.

June 1, 2013

Wildlife on Parade . . .

Friday, May 31st

Jan talked to Brandi this morning about their new house. The closing went off with no problems yesterday, and the moving people showed up this morning to start the move. By the time Jan talked to her, they were just about finished loading up

She’s so excited that they will be sleeping in their new home tonight.

We left the beautiful view here at the Likely Place Golf & RV Resort a little before 10am, got back on US395 and headed north for Bend, OR

I was happy to find out from a guy in a Class C parked next to us that we were in for a nice drive. He had just come down from Bend and said although it was State Roads (SR) all the way, they were nice two-lane roads with wide shoulders, wide enough, if it turns out, for us to be able to pull over for a rest stop with no problems.

One thing that was kind of interesting on the trip was all the animals we saw along the way. Before we even got out of the park, we saw both chipmunks and prairie dogs. But I think the most unusual were the White Pelicans we saw along Tule Lake, CA, just before we crossed into Oregon. We’ve seen plenty of them at Galveston Bay RV Park where we spend the winter, but in the middle of northern California?

White Pelicans

One thing I’ve always found interesting about them is the fact that they’re only white when they’re sitting.

White Pelican 1

When they’re flying you see that they’re actually White & Black Pelicans.

White Pelican 2

And to go with the pelicans, we also had a lot of seagulls as well.

While we were still in CA the land was still relatively flat. And driving through here, we saw a large coyote loping alongside the road.

Likely to Bend 1

But soon after we entered Oregon, the terrain started to get more hilly, but still very scenic.

Likely to Bend 2

Likely to Bend 3

We even got a view of Mt. Shasta, at this point about 50 miles away. From the right spot it can be seen from as far away as 140 miles.

Likely to Bend 4

And here it is again about 90 miles away.

Likely to Bend 5

Along here is where we saw our last unusual animal, a large white llama in a pen behind a farmhouse.

We got to the Bend-Sunriver Thousand Trails park a little after 3pm, and quickly noticed some changes, one of them disappointing. The first was the fact that we no longer check in at the ranger station, but they’ve rerouted the entrance to pass by the office where you then go in and register.

The second one was the fact that Big Jim’s Coffee Wagon was no more.

Big Jim's Coffee Wagon

Parked at the exit, we regularly stopped for great coffee and delicious breakfast sandwiches as we left for sightseeing trips like our visit to Crater Lake when we were here two years ago.


After signing in, we unhitched the toad by the lodge and drove over to where we parked the last time we were here. We were happy to see our old site was empty. In fact the entire ‘H’ section was empty. Nice.

We got parked and set up with no trouble, but then my problems started. No matter what I did I could not get a satellite signal. Last time I used this hole in the trees.

Sat View

But that was when I had the old manual dish.

I spent 4 or 5 hours moving my Winegard Carryout Dome around, trying to get a consistent signal with no luck. Sometimes I would seem to get something and then it would go away.

I was using a manual compass, my cellphone compass, and three different cellphone programs that showed me where the satellite is located in the sky. And all of them were telling me something different.

I must have shifted the dish around about 20 times, until finally I just gave up and called it a night. I was too pooped to even do a blog. Off to bed.

Saturday, June 1st

Getting up at my usual 10am, (remember, I usually don’t go to bed until around 2am), I fixed us coffee and we just enjoyed the view and the smell of the surrounding woods.

Yes, I was trying to avoid fooling with the satellite dish anymore. But finally, Jan’s pointed looks and loud sighs stirred me to action. Well, that and threats of physical violence if I didn’t get her some TV.

So I had to get back to work. I put the dish back in the location where I seemed to get some sort of signal last night. A couple of times my DVR started to come online and then stopped.

Normally I just plug in the DVR, set up the dome outside, and then by the time I get back in the rig I’ve got pictures. But that wasn’t working this time, so I tried something different.

Since I was occasionally getting some sort of signal, I wondered what it looked like. So I set the DVR to the Signal Meter screen and put the dome in search mode. Getting back inside I noticed that I was getting signal readings that would come and go, with a high of about 73%, not great, but certainly usable. I expected the dome to lock in on the satellite and shut off. But that’s not what happened.

The dome kept searching without locking in, and then timed out and shut off. So why didn’t the dome just lock in, even on a weak, but usable signal. The only thing I can figure is that it has minimum signal level it will accept, and it’s more than 73%. So, new plan.

I restarted the dome searching, and while Jan watched the meters on the TV, I stayed outside and the first time it reached 73% again, I pulled the power cord.


We had signal. But because the low signal equals low bandwidth, it took a few minutes for the channel lineup to download, but after about 5 minutes we had pictures. Yeah!

With this problem out of the way, Jan and I headed down to the park office to check on some things. Since the park doesn’t have sewer connections, I wanted to check on the honey wagon schedule (Tuesday, Thursday, and Sunday. Sign up the day before), and also let them know I have a couple of packages coming in, the missing ones being forwarded from the Lake Tahoe park.

Jan also wanted to check out the park’s Book Exchange, and drop off some books. I guess it worked out, because she dropped off 8 and came back with only 5.

Right next door was the park’s Country Store, where Jan found some new dishes, moose-themed, of course.

Bend TT Moose Plates

Then before we left, Jan checked out the produce stand that is now located where Big Jim’s Coffee Wagon used to be, and came away with some fresh cherries and tomatoes. Mmmm, fresh cherries.

For dinner, we had Rudy’s BBQ from Texas. Before we left, we bought a bunch and froze it. So tonight we had ribs, sliced brisket, and jalapeno sausage links, along with baked beans and chips. And of course, Rudy’s great BBQ sauce slathered on it all. A really good meal

Finishing up for tonight, here’s a shot of our site and the surrounding area.

Bend TT 1

Bend TT 2

Really nice, and with no neighbors within sight, really quiet.

June 1, 2014

Let’s Be Careful Out There . . .

Jan and I once again sat outside and had our coffee and toast this morning while we can. It’s supposed to rain tomorrow and be back down into the mid-60’s by Wednesday.

Normally we would have walked this morning, but although my knee is almost back to normal, I don’t want to push it. Maybe tomorrow or Tuesday.

On the phone front, my Samsung Droid Charge apparently had a mild stroke sometime yesterday, when it lost all my contacts. My Call Log and everything else seems to be fine, just my contacts are gone.

I went online to the Backup Assistant and they’re all there, but so far I haven’t been able to restore them back to my phone. All the instructions seem to be for restoring to a new phone, not your old one. Plus the app on the phone only allows for backing up, not restoring. So I’ll probably just go by the Verizon store here in Elkhart tomorrow to figure it out.

Then again, maybe this is just God’s way of telling me I need that new Samsung Galaxy S5.

Just a warning . . .

I’ve been getting a lot of dangerous emails and I wanted to be sure that everyone was on the lookout for them.

They masquerade as Wal-Mart Gift Cards, Chili’s Coupons, or Red Lobster, etc. or even Free iPhones,

Because the fact that there’s usually something funny about the wording or phrasing of the message, the biggest giveaway is the email address shown at the upper left.

In this case, it’s [email protected].

Do you really think that Wal-Mart is going to have an email address with ‘pigduke’ in it?

Walmart Trojan

Here’s the exact same email, but from ‘[email protected]’.

Walmart Trojan2

And here’s what looks like a Delivery Notice from the US Post Office. Do you really thing the US Postal Service would be using a United Kingdom email address?

USPS Trojan

What do you think is going to happen if you try to print that shipping label? And why would you need to print a shipping label to PICK UP a package, anyway?

And note that apparently you can go to ANY Post Office to pick up your package.

So check those email addresses, and Let’s Be Careful Out There.

June 1, 2016

Noodles and Watermelons . . .

Well, it was another sunny, rainy, clear, cloudy, dry, flooding day with the weather flip-flopping back and forth, actually pretty typical for summer south Texas weather.

Of course, we really don’t need any more rain, since the creeks, rivers, lakes, and levees are all overflowing, and southwest of Houston they’re apparently evacuating anyone anywhere near the Brazos River.

And there’s more rain to come. Yikes!

On the plus side, it appears things are picking up in the oil fields, with more and more requests for gate guards being posted, especially as the last of the snowbird guards are heading north. So that bodes well if we decide to gate guard later this year. But whatever we do, we don’t want to do south Texas again. Our last two years in east Texas have really spoiled us for actual trees and grass, and not scrub brush and caliche mud.

I spent most of the day working on a new client’s website, getting the initial concept laid down and then approved by the client. Now I can start expanding on the pages and adding content.

Here’s what I’ve got so far. Right now it’s located at a temporary subdomain, but when it’s done it’ll be on its own domain.

For dinner tonight, we had the last of the French Fry Chili Cheese Hot Dog Casserole from a couple of nights ago. Still great.

And once again, to start it off, Jan whipped up another batch of her salad dressing.

Jan's Salad Dressing_thumb[1]

Since she makes it to order in a small batch, it’s always fresh and delicious. You can find the recipe here. Jan’s Version of Lynn Cross’ Salad Dressing

And to add a little extra crunch to the salad she made to go with the dressing, this time she added some Chinese Noodles to go with the Texas Toast Croutons.

Jan's Salad 3_thumb[1]

Tomorrow night for dinner – Whataburger!

Nuff’ said.

June 1, 2017

Spiders and Snakes . . . and Bears

Jan and I left the rig about 9am heading for Bear Country USA, the first park on today’s three-park tour.

It took us about 30 minutes to get there and $30 to get in to take the 45-minute drive through the park.

Bear Country Waterfall

First up was a herd of American Elk.

Bear Country Elk

Many still with their Velvet Antlers.

Bear Country Elk 2

Right next door was a head of reindeer.

Bear Country Reindeer 1

Looks like Donner, Blitzen, and a few others.

Bear Country Reindeer 2

Big Big Horn Sheep.

Bear Country Big Horn Sheep

Little Big Horn(less) Sheep.

Bear Country Big Horn Sheep 2

An ugly, shaggy bison (Buffalo)

Bear Country Buffalo

Bears, Bears, and more Bears.

Bear Country Bear 1

Bear Country Bear 3

This is the animal guard separator that keeps the bears in their own habitat area.

Bear Country Animal Guard

Unlike a regular cattle guard, these are made up of railroad rails, and then electrified like an electric fence.

Bear Country Bear at Guard

The bears walk back and forth in from of the guard so much that they even have a sign posted to keep you moving.

Bear Country Bear Sign

But sometimes two or three of them will be weaving to and fro, blocking the road. I guess they can’t figure out why the cars can get over it and they can’t.

Bear Country Bears at Guard

And this is their resident Grizzly.

Bear Country Grizly

American Bobcat

Bear Country Bobcat

An Arctic Fox

Bear Country Arctic Fox

Another sculpture done by the same guy that did the horse sculptures in Hill City

Bear Country Buffalo Head

Hill City Horse Sculpture

Hill City Large Horse

Finishing up at Bear Country, we headed over to Hill City to have lunch at Alpine Inn. Wanting to try their much-renowned German food, we had tried to have dinner there last Thursday, only to find that they only served the German fare for lunch. So we were back,

Alpine Inn

I started out with a cup of the Austrian Cheese Soup.

Alpine Inn Austrian Cheese Soup

Delicious with a sharp nutty flavor and a smooth creamy texture. Jan quickly reached her two spoon taste limit, and almost ordered her own cup. (When I order something that she doesn’t, she gets to taste two spoonfuls of mine, and then she has to order her own. I’ve learned this from experience.)

Jan ordered her favorite Jaeger Schnitzel, a breaded port cutlet covered with a fresh mushroom sauce, accompanied by German potato salad and red cabbage.

Alpine Inn Jaeger Schnizel

I got the German Plate, with a Grilled Bratwurst, a Smoked Bratwurst, sauerkraut, German potato salad, and red cabbage.

Alpine Inn German Plate

Both of us agreed that the Alpine Inn’s German food is on the same level as our other favorite German place, Der Lindenbaum in Fredericksburg, TX. Really, really good.

I’m going to wrap it up for today and finish up with our visit to Reptile Gardens tomorrow.

And on tomorrow, we driving over to Gillette, WY tomorrow to pick up a part for our rig’s generator, and come home with a side trip to Devil’s Tower.

June 1, 2018

Morro and More . . .

Today was pretty quiet at work today, especially for a Friday. I checked the website this morning a few minutes after midnight, and the system had switched over to the June sale prices with no problems.

And I did figure out why last February’s sale prices came off the site a day early.  After you set up the sale items and the discount amount, you can start the sale immediately, or set a start and a stop date. So yesterday I set the start date as 06/01/2018 and the stop date as 06/30/2018.

So as programmed, the sale started at 12:01am this morning. And in one of those ‘Doh’ moments, I realized that I was setting the end date a day early, and should set the end date as 07/01/2018, and not 06/30/2018. That way the sale will go off at 12:01am, lasting the full month.

June 1, 2019

Now That’s Class . . .

First up, I’ve posted the next installment of my trip. It’s Regensburg, Germany, and it’s for May 5th.

Today was a pretty quiet day, for a change. After a nice morning, we had lunch at Rudy’s BBQ up in Webster, so now we’ve had the Trifecta of meals we missed on our trip – Chinese at King Food, Mexican at Los Ramirez, and now BBQ at Rudy’s.

All’s right with the world.

Next up, we made a quick WalMart stop for a couple of things, a quick Sam’s stop for a prescription, and then headed back toward home. But when we got down to Dickinson, I made a detour to the Enterprise rental office to see if they could get Jan’s seat headrest down.

The last person who used it must have been about 6’8” tall since it’s up so high that Jan’s head doesn’t even touch it. But even reading the manual, I can’t get it down. So I thought maybe they could help.

But it seems they closed at noon on Saturday, so no luck. I’ll try again Monday on the way home.

With that, we made a stop off at the storage room to drop the suitcases, heaters, and quilts off, and then it was home. Just in time for a nice nap.

It’s hard to believe that a long time ago I didn’t like naps. Times have changed.

Tomorrow we were supposed to go up to Conroe to meet up with our friends Chris and Charles Yust, but they had some mechanical problems on their trip here from Florida, so we’re putting it off until Wednesday.

Random Notes About Our European Trip:

Using the restroom at Rudy’s today and using the air blower hand dryer thingy, I remember noticing that as we traveled across Europe, every single restroom, except two that I was in, used the air dryers rather than paper towels. And in every case, including today, I saw the person use it for 30 seconds or so, and then end up drying their hands on their shirt or pants. Me included.

I guess if you stood there long enough it might actually work, but who wants to wait that long?

The two exceptions were the public area bathrooms on the ship, and bathrooms at the Chesterfield Mayfair Hotel where we had Afternoon Tea (that blog still to come).

Both of them did it this way.

Skirnir Hand Towels

Now that’s class!

June 1, 2020

BPPV and Me . . .

My BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo) showed up yesterday morning, and like my previous attacks, it was a little less in intensity, and a little different in effect.

This time the vertigo only hit me when I was standing up, not sitting or lying down as in past times. But by this morning it had started to fade and is mostly gone by now.

I had gotten an email a few weeks ago from Holland America offering me one of the 3 discounts on our Holland America Alaskan Cruise next May.

1. Make an installment toward your booked cruise and receive up to $250 onboard spending money.

  • For a $250 installment, receive US$50
  • For a $500 installment, receive US$125
  • For a $750 installment, receive US$250
  • 2. Sign up for our payment plan, using EZPay, and receive US$250 onboard spending money per booking. Spread out your cruise balance into equal, interest-free monthly payments, with no additional fees.

    3. Pay for your booked cruise in full to receive a 10% discount plus US$250 onboard spending money per booking. Buy and save now, and enjoy something special later — a massage, champagne cocktails or perhaps a dinner in our elegant Pinnacle Grill.

    Although it took a lot of help from Chantelle Nugent, our friend/travel agent, to get them on the phone, I finally made a one-time $750 payment for $250 in shipboard cash.

    I actually couldn’t see much difference between 1 and 2. Both of them give you $250 shipboard cash, but No. 1 only required a single payment of $750, where No. 2 required 8 monthly payments of $750 or so, all for the same $250 credit.

    I never like to give anyone my money until I have to.

    The other thing I’m working on that’s trip-related is changing our hotel and flight reservations. We planned to fly into Fairbanks a week before the land part of our cruise starts. We want to spend longer there than the one day we would have as part of the cruise. So we had booked a week at the Pioneer Park Best Western, as well as our flight going up a week earlier also.

    But I was running into a problem because I’m apparently trying to rebook/change them too early. Chantelle says you normally can’t book flights more than 11 months out. So I guess I’ll just have to be patient for a few weeks.

    The problem is, as Jan can tell you, I don’t do ‘patient’ very well.

    Finishing up on space note after Saturday’s successful SpaceX launch and yesterday’s docking at the Space Station, I thought I post this great shot from the Cassini probe showing the Earth and the moon through the rings of Saturn.


    Yes, they’re those two small white dots.

    June 1, 2021

    Last Day Of A Nice Long Holiday . . .

    Jan and I headed to lunch about 1pm, and as happens sometimes, we didn’t know where until we were actually on the way. But we ended up at Los Ramirez Mexican once again.

    Always good.

    Then our next stop was right down the street to the Take 5 Oil Change place to get the Jeep taken care of before our upcoming trip. This was our first time to use Take 5, and I was impressed by two things.

    The first is that, unlike Jiffy Lube and others, Take 5 lets you stay in your car while they’re doing the oil change. And two, oil changes have gotten expensive since the last time I had it done, rather than doing it myself.

    $65 for regular (non-synthetic) high mileage 5W30. Ouch!

    Then it was one last stop at HEB for a few things before heading home.

    Later I got two of the four front solar screens installed, but it looks like I’m going to have to reposition a couple of the inside magnets that have come loose.

    That’s for tomorrow.

    While I was outside I also hooked a Harbor Freight battery maintainer to the Dakota battery to keep it charged up while we’re gone and later. Saves me from putting my charger back on it every few weeks.

    A couple of weeks ago it was announced that the I-40 bridge over the Mississippi River at Memphis had been closed indefinitely due to cracks found during a recent inspection.

    Mississippi River Bridge Crack

    For a while Mississippi River water traffic under the bridge was also closed, backing up barges up and down the river. Though river traffic has been restored since the first phase of the repair has been completed, they say it will still be AT LEAST several more months until the bridge is reopened to vehicle traffic.

    So why I’m posting this?

    Well, we’ll be traveling through there next Tuesday on our way up to Illinois. Now we will be coming up I-55 from LA/MS and will be crossing the I-55 bridge down south from the broken one.

    Memphis Map Route

    But having crossed both bridges a number of times when we’ve been staying in the area, the traffic is pretty thick on both bridges at the same time. So I was wondering about possible backups on the I-55 crossing since it is now carrying the traffic from both bridges.

    But I’ve seen several FB postings saying that it’s not a problem, especially since we’ll be passing through in the middle of the day rather than the morning or afternoon rush hour.

    One less thing to worry about.

    June 1, 2023

    Once Again, I Hate Updates . . .

    I should have listened to myself.

    This morning, against my better judgment, I updated the PHP program on this website from version 7.4 to 8.0, the latest version. I had been receiving daily nagging notices from WordPress telling me that my 7.4 was out of date and needed to be upgraded ‘immediately’ due to ‘security reasons’.

    And as soon as I did, the site crashed, giving me only an error message.

    Now, knowing me, you can be sure I did a full backup before the update, but I was loathe to do a restore since it takes so long.

    But then after waiting a few hours to see if things finally worked out on the GoDaddy side, and after we got back from our Storage Room/Snooze/WalMart run, I went on to GoDaddy and finally figured out a way to downgrade the PHP program from 8.0 back to 7.4.

    And Voila!, the site was back up.

    One thing kind of weird about the outage was that the site seemed to work just fine on my phone and tablet, and kind of worked on my desktop using MS Edge rather than Chrome like I normally use and where I saw the error message.

    So now to try and figure out what the problem is.

    Heading out about 12:30, our first stop was at our storage room to drop off our heaters and winter quilts. Not going to be needing them for a while.

    Then it was on up to the Webster area to have brunch at Snooze once again. And it seems Jan’s reputation precedes her.

    Not only did our server, Ashley, know what she was going to order, the Bravocado Toast,

    but she remembered that Jan likes her bacon ‘glass’ style. As in when you touch it, it shatters.

    She did have to ask me what I wanted, since I weave back and forth. And this time I got the Shrimp & Grits.

    And when another server delivered our food, she commented on how ‘well-done’ the bacon was, and then she said she remembered who it was for.

    As I said, Jan’s reputation preceded her.

    Finally heading back down to our area, we made a WalMart shop for a few things before getting back to the rig about 3:15.