Friday, March 27, 2015

Just Resting and a timely repair

We did not do very much this week other than rest and read. 

During our first two weeks in San Diego we had a flurry of visits, appointments, grandson activities, and shopping. I felt a bit overwhelmed by all the traffic on the roads, and noise constantly assaulting us. I thought I didn't mind, saying the trade-off of being near family was well worth it, but once we were back in a quiet park setting I felt much better.

Typical of many parks, the Summit Campground in Sweet-water Regional Park is fairly empty during the week. It is too far from the San Diego attractions such as Sea World and the Zoo for out-of-town tourists, but fills up with more local weekend campers on Friday through Sunday. 

My ankle is healing nicely and I have been riding my bike for short times at least twice a day. I don't agree that you "never forget how to ride a bike". I have had to relearn how to get started, when to shift, and most importantly, how to stop. The last being something I was just out practicing this morning.  Since the park is fairly empty, and the roads are very smooth, this is the perfect place to refresh some of those long-forgotten skills. The grade of the road is also excellent for using the leg muscles that have grown weak over the years, with short easy ups and downs.

I have only fallen off once. I do have a helmet!

Some of the other bloggers have had unfortunate mechanical problems with their rigs or tow cars this spring.  Breakdowns are a fact of RV life, and sometimes they can be a major headache.

We were very lucky this week.

Picture from Web, our jack looks like this though.
One of the leveling jacks has been a bit "fussy" from time to time. We knew from a previous occasion when one of the other ones failed, the extended warranty we have would cover the replacement in part, but not until there was a complete failure.
How were we lucky? It failed to work when setting up at this park site. It was a Saturday afternoon, but because we had a two-week reservation we knew we had time to deal with it. Good thing we were not out boondocking with a weak or nonexistent phone signal.

On Monday after calls to our warranty company and to our roadside service provider, we were put in contact with a Mobile RV Repair company that is also an Atwood authorized dealer. They came out to look at the job on Tuesday, and returned  to install a new jack on Thursday.  Total bill was $1480, of which we had to pay $433. Nice! When we had one of the other jacks replaced last year we had to pay the full bill up front, and wait for several months for reimbursement from the insurance company because the repair place would not bill them. 

It is so nice when things go smoothly.

We are looking forward to another nice weekend with our daughter and the boys. I'm going over to her house this afternoon to do my wash and cook dinner. Nice to be able to give her a little after-work break while we are here.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Big Change

My ankle is getting better every day. We did get to go to a Junior High Jazz Fest in which our grandson's band played, but other than that I spent most of this week resting.  I plan to try biking a short distance around the park on Monday. I bought an ankle brace to help prevent further damage.

From Craig:
We are now in the Summit campground of Sweetwater Regional Park, southeast of San Diego.  It is hilly and scrub-covered, and ever so peaceful and quiet, except for an occasional plane landing or taking off from the San Diego airport.  It is very different from our previous site at Santa Fe campground next to I-5 between Mission Bay and La Jolla, which was sandwiched between one of the busiest interstate freeways in the West and a frequently-used train track. 

The builders of the Summit park have done a fine job of preserving the near-desert scrub that (presumably) covered the area before its development.  

Now it looks like someone blazed trails through the scrub, paved a concrete slab in the middle, and deposited a fiberglass box on each slab.

Merikay chose an end site when she made the reservation, and so we have a pretty nice view from our patio.

It also seems to be a Cottontail Heaven.

I went out for a short walk and had 3 or 4 cross the roads in front of me.  At 2 people per RV and 2 rabbits per scrub patch between, it's hard to say which are the more numerous inhabitants. 

The scrub probably favors the rabbits over predators like coyotes.  Like Brer Rabbit and the briar patch...

What was the biggest difference that you've had, between one location and the next?  Feel free to include your home or other non-RV location, as either end of the difference...

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Time Flies

Our first week in San Diego has been very busy with many get-togethers with family and friends.  Plus taking care of annual business like establishing a new medical home and consulting a professional tax preparer for the first time.

As a general practice I don't post many pictures of my family in my blog, but here they are!  One good looking group, don't you think?

This was taken a few blocks from their home in Sunset Cliffs when we went for a Sunday morning walk with the dogs. 

Food is always a big part of our lives. We enjoyed these Eggs Benedict at the far end of the walk.

It looks like it will be a long time before I will allow myself to indulge in a yummy dish such as this again. The outcome (which I totally expected) of my doctors visit and blood work was the advice to lose weight, stop drinking wine, and get more exercise. 

Those of you who followed this blog in 2012 may remember how hard I worked to lose 50 pounds and get healthier. Well, three years later I have to do it again. I did manage to keep the weight off for most of a year, but in the last two I have eaten my way to health problems once again.  

I know I can lose weight. I know I can eat in a more mindful way. I have made a new commitment to myself and my own health. 

My goal is to lose 50 pounds again by November when I come back to see the same doctor. I can do it! I think I will start by reviewing all the 2012 posts. I know they were very positive.

In keeping with that goal I bought myself a new toy.

A spiffy new 3 speed "beach cruiser" bike. Jeannie Sparks has been an inspiration to me with all of her posts about the things she sees on her rides. I intend to start slowly with daily rides around the parks we visit. When my legs get stronger I will be able to farther afield. I think this is a good "before" picture. Look at those fat thighs and puffy arms!  Eight months from now I WILL BE THINNER!

Good intentions? 
But this plan of action have been delayed.


On Sunday I was in a hurry and I fell while going down the Alfa stairs.

I was holding a bag of trash and talking at the same time. I am usually very careful, but not this time, and I fell. 

Sprained my ankle.   Ouch!                                                                                                                                           
It is not a really bad sprain, but it will take some time before I can ride.  Right now I'm just looking forward to being able to walk again.

This too will be a memory someday!  But for now it is a bummer.

Monday, March 16, 2015


Just a quick note:
Thanks for the information and links about Glacier National Park. It is on my Bucket List for this Summer. We have a month reservation outside of Yellowstone in July and are planning on getting to Glacier in mid to late August. Since it seems there are more and more people RVing, I want to make sure we have reservations at one of the more reasonably priced places. 

I always enjoy reading blog posts, but find it cumbersome to remember who went where when.  

So thanks again!

Saturday, March 14, 2015


I know several of the people who read my blog have taken trips to the Glacier National Park area, and I guess I'm too lazy to try to search out your posts.  

So .. I'm asking.

If you went to Glacier, where did you stay? Although we prefer hookups, we can dry camp.  If you wrote posts about your trip, can you give me the URLs?

Thanks so much in advance. 

We are planning on going up there at the end of August, and realize it is probably time to look into making reservations.

Not the Newbies anymore

I guess we are not the newbies in the parks anymore. Yesterday we spent some time with another Alfa couple we met here at the park and exchanged some stories, shared some experiences and some resources. They had more overall RV experience, but were relativly new to having an Alfa and were interested in the full time lifestyle.  

I think we have really learned a lot from reading blogs for several years before we sold the house.  Thank you all for sharing your experiences with us in that way.  We hope to help others by doing the same.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Back Home Again

They say "home is where you park it" when you live in your RV full time.  This week we experienced being away from home for the first time in a year and a half. Since our Alfa needed to get all of the caulking on her sides removed and replaced, and since this would take several days, we decided to leave her at Alfateer's and stay at our daughter's home.

I enjoyed seeing our grandsons, daughter, and son-in-law, but because we had left the Alfa in an unexpected rush, I had left some of my stuff behind. I'm just not used to packing for a trip anymore.  Craig forgot his comb and I missed my bathrobe.

In general, we are very comfortable at Deidre's, but it is still someone else's home. 

I guess this is why I like the RV life so much. My own bed, my own coffee maker, and access to all of my own stuff.

The "where we park it" may change regularly, but our home stays the same.  

Life is good.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Catch Up Time

We are finally in San Diego, and are spending our first week here staying in our daughter's guest room.  Her house has always felt like home to me, having spent many weekends here when the grandsons were small, as well as quite a few holidays.

As we all know, RV plans are never firm. We had planned on starting our California time with a few days up in Fontana getting a couple of minor repairs taken care of. We WERE then going to spend a couple of relaxing days in Desert Hot Springs at Catalina RV Spa and Resort, enjoying some soak time in their wonderful hot spring pools, before spending a month or so at an RV park near our daughter in San Diego.

Well, I waited too long to make a month rate reservation at the Mission Bay RV resort we have been to before, and have settled on two 2 week stays at other less desirable places.  But then, where we park is not important. This is family month!

Our Hot Springs days were cancelled when upon inspection, it was recommended we have all of the side seals reworked. Given that failure of the seals can cause very expensive delamination and/or blistering of the fiberglass, we decided to get it done. But that meant the Alfa had to stay up in Fontana for most of a week.  In the long run it's a very good time to do this because, as I said in my opening, our daughter has a nice guest room for us to stay in.

It is really nice to see her, her husband, and our two exceptional grandsons. I know, every grandparent thinks theirs are the smartest, best looking, nicest grandchildren in the world.  Well, mine truly ARE!

So, thats all for now.  It's family time.