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So Much for the Rabbit!

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So Much For The Rabbit, or This Too Shall Pass!

In England, it’s “White Rabbit.†I’m not sure where or when I picked up this superstition, but probably in college. The first word you utter upon waking the first morning of a new month should be “Rabbit†if you want the following days to bring you health, wealth and wisdom. I’ve been a dedicated utterer Lo! these 50-plus years and have succeeded at indoctrinating two husbands. Until now.

May 1, 2009, started like any other first of the month. Soon after saying “Rabbit,†the refrigerator repair man at Pete’s RV in Burlington, Vt., arrived at our door. The fridge had quit mysteriously two weeks earlier – as soon as we’d put 50 miles between us and Rivers RV in Jacksonville, Fla. We had stopped at River’s because the LED display on our thermostat wasn’t working. Diagnosis? Thermostat’s fine, but your microwave’s out. It took GE repair over a week to put in a new control board, so with unleashed joy we continued our journey north.

On our website, (gypsyfeet.net, fully chronicals our trip from during the two weeks between leaving Florida and May 1. But here we are now -- a new month, a new Rabbit, and all is about to be fixed so we can continue on to our summer spot, backed up to the Exeter River in New Hampshire.

Oh, are we blessed! Peter comes in, takes a quick look, then goes to the outside board, presses the reset button, and all that frozen food we’d thrown out became a bad memory. As we chatted with Peter, Cor happened to flip on a ceiling light switch. The light went on, but so did the ceiling fan and the automatic hatch mechanism. Turning the second light switch turned off the light, the fan, and shut the vent.

Now Peter really went to work. Diagnosis? Bad ballast, causing all of our electronic problems. It is apparently easier to just change the whole light, so while we waited for new ones we managed to get some personal maintenance work done: both to the dental hygienist for semi-annual cleaning, and I to Dr. Tranmer at Fletcher Allen Hospital to have my carpel tunnel fixed. Amazing op – immediate relief of pain and numbness.

The Rabbit was really doing its job!

On May 15 we sailed down Interstate 89 to West Lebanon, N.H., where we got our annual inspection stickers affixed. It didn’t seem so bad that the RV needed an axle seal replaced, or the Pacifica needed some warranty work done on an oil leak. After all, the problems were found, fixed, and we were on the road again by noon.

A loud “Boom†changed all that. First thing Cor knew, a man was gesturing towards the rear. A blowout! At 5:00 on Friday afternoon, of course. It was the right rear outer dualie, so he could limp to our campground only a few miles away.

We hooked up, then began to get settled in when the fridge started its familiar beeping – “no co.†It would not reignite, either on AC or LP. It was cold outside, so Cor hooked up the electric for some heat. No electric. We discovered we were supposed to have established an account with the electric company, and of course this was Saturday. LP ? Same thing, but worse. We’re nearly out and they won’t come here, we have to go to them, but with a blown tire, we’re stuck. And it’s getting colder! As we wrapped our shivering selves in blankets, grabbed a peanut butter sandwich, looked towards the black TV screen in the gathering darkness, tried to remember ghost stories from our youth, and were generally miserable, we realized we’d been duped. (Photos to follow)

And that is when we dumped the Rabbit!

But all you RVers know, This Too Shall Pass! As old boaters, we can thankfully say, “At least we won’t sink!â€

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Gail and Cor,

I'd say the rabbit owes you a big one! If it can't do better than that I would dump it also. You've given me a new saying, at least we won't sink! As a pilot, my saying is "at least we don't have to find a place to land!"

We had a flat tire on the rear on the way into our parking spot at FMCA Convention in Minneapolis, last summer. Lucky enough to find a shop that could come out and do a repair on the spot. That got us to the shop to get the tire replaced. And we found out we were spoiled one spring at a campground in Pennsylvania when we found out that propane couldn't be delivered to our location, we had to go get it. In Texas where we winter they come through the park every week with the propane truck and you just put a sign in the window to have them stop and fill up your tank.

Enjoyed your story even if it was a sad one! Better luck with June.

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Thanks for your sympathy, but one of my reasons for telling this drama was to push the "This too shall pass" motto. Fortunately, Cor and I both have the attitude that "someday" we will be able to laugh about this...so we just laugh now. Anybody seeing us, sitting in the dark, talking and laughing must surely have thought we were daft. Perhaps we are. In our combined 160+ years of experiencing the good and the bad, it's all relative. We pinch ourselves in the morning, feel it, then know all is OK.

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P.S. I failed to mention that hitting something that jumped out at Cor and bent the rim has complicated our problem. The new tire is only money; the rim is time; time is money and so, as I used to say in our Coastal Crjuise website, we had three mottos: First - "Oh my God!"; second - "Boy were we lucky" and third: "It's only money."

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