Sundog, Lake Marie Oregon 2018

Saturday, April 18, 2015

2015 Alfa Owners Club Rally

In some ways this year's AOC Rally has been the best of the three we have attended. 

One of several dinner gatherings in the Ballroom. 

We have been enjoying pot-luck meals, catered meals, and group restaurant meals every evening, along with many "Happy Hour" get-togethers. We could join in for coffee and donuts every morning, but on most mornings we prefer to sleep in and make our own breakfasts.

We feel we know more people than in previous years, and know who to ask if we have a question.

This year we skipped some of the product seminars, because we had already heard them. Craig went to some of the "tech talks", and we both went to the "travel talks".  On our list were talks about Mexico, the Rockies, Alaska, and the Maritimes.  Some of the presentations were by other Alfa owners who had traveled by themselves, and some were by Alfa owners who traveled with the Adventure Caravan company as customers and as employees. There are advantages to both. The caravan approach has the advantage of professional planning and having a wagon master and other guides available to help if you need it. You do not have to make your own reservations, or worry about getting lost or stuck. You travel with a group and enjoy a social atmosphere and group meals. But you do pay quite a lot for these advantages. To quote my brother: "It's like the difference between a cruise and a boat ride."  

On the other hand, if you travel on your own, you can go where you want, and stay for as many days as you want.  Of the trips we heard about, only traveling in Mexico for the first time would tempt me to have a paid guide.  But that may change in the future!  Did you know you can go on an RV Caravan trip in Africa? Who would have thought!

We also took advantage of "Rally Discounts" to have our coach washed, oxidation removed, and a good hand waxing. Our holding tanks also got a thorough power cleaning and all the sensors are reading correctly again. We have never had a black tank clog, but the gray tank has smelled bad lately, and a good professional cleaning was called for.

We have enjoyed some good conversations about traveling in an RV, and have gotten some great ideas and advice from others.

Our chapter of Alfa owners, the Mavericks.
We all try to avoid discussions about politics, but did have one good round where no one really got mad.  That is a rarity these days since it seems everyone is so polarized and unwilling to listen, myself included!

[From Craig]  Wednesday night we went to a dinner and "entertainment night" that we signed up for at our Alfa rally.  The dinner was good, as was the conversation 'cause we were sitting with our friends from our chapter.  Then came the entertainment which was a jazz quintet.  After two numbers, I asked Merikay what she thought of bailing out early, and she said that was OK with her.  After the third number I gave Merikay a high-sign that I was ready to leave.  I said good night to our friends at the table, and Merikay creatively added that we had to get home to walk our dog.  As we're leaving, one of our friends called after us "but you don't have a dog!"

Which some other people around caught onto, leading to general laughter.  At such times I love Merikay more than ever.

Friday was departure day, and we all got a breakfast in a bag from the resort and headed out in all directions. We stopped in at the Purcell Tire dealer in town to get a slow leak checked (caused by a loose valve stem) and got in line behind behind another Alfa for service.

Then we were on our way to Surprise, AZ to visit my brother and his wife. They have also sold their home and now live in a delightful little place in the Sunflower Resort. 

Hopefully I will be posting more often as we start traveling and exploring more of Arizona and Utah in the next several months.


  1. I did the caravan thing to Alaska in 2004, and I'm glad I did. I had a limited amount of time off from work, and I also had my 87 year old mother with me. The other members of the tour were a great help when my mother became ill, and when we had a flat tire in Chicken.

  2. Looks like you guys had a rewarding time there. I would likely go for the tour guide for my first time in Mexico. I read so many blogs of people RVing through Mexico without a bit of problem, but...yea, the first time....I would be really nervous going it alone.

  3. Guess you'll just have to get Craig a dog now, huh? Nice to hear from Craig. Glad you're having fun.

  4. too much fun! and such a sweet Craig by your side :-)

  5. Dogs must be walked even if their fictional dogs. ;-)

  6. That's a GREAT excuse for, "We're ready to head home..."...Love your cover photo!


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