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  1. For sixteen years we have returned to the Rio Grande Valley, in the southern tip of Texas, each fall. We enjoy the mild winters and the abundance of recreation, natural resources and wildlife in the area. The December issue of Texas Parks and Wildlife Magazine is dedicated entirely to the Rio Grande Valley (RGV). This publication from the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department is an excellent resource for those looking for a spot to visit in the winter, perhaps like us, you'll find it to be just what you are looking for in a winter residence. In commemoration of their 75th year in publication they decided to focus on a single area of Texas and the staff decided that focus had to be on the RGV. They sent the entire staff to the RGV, housing them at Estero Llano Grande State Park south of Weslaco. Every article in this issue of the magazine is about the RGV; its people, nature, history and recreation. A one year subscription (10 issues) costs just $18.00. There are regular offers in the magazine for $12 per year and 2 years for $20. You should be able to purchase this issue at any Texas State Park. You can read any or all articles in this issue at: https://tpwmagazine.com/
  2. The Junior Play when I was in high school was Harvey. My best friend played the lead role, Elwood P. Dowd. Elwood, a grown man, had an imaginary friend, Harvey. Harvey was a rabbit, a six foot tall rabbit, according to Elwood. I had a minor part, acting was never my thing. Anyway, these days there is another Harvey and it isn't a rabbit. Harvey is dumping a huge quantity of rain on the upper Gulf Coast of Texas and now Louisiana. A stalled storm can unload a huge amount of water on any given spot. Think of it as a conveyor belt, picking up water from the warm water in the Gulf of Mexico and carrying it to the coast of Texas where it deposits it, continuously, in huge quantities. Several years ago we had a single thunderstorm that sat right on top of our RV Park in Texas, Sandpipers Resort. I can say that the thunderstorm sat there for one hour because I looked at the radar record as and after the storm was over. In one hour this thunderstorm dropped 5+ inches of rain on our park. The low spot in the park became a lake, we dubbed it Lake Sandpiper. Our mobile home was on the northern edge of Lake Sandpiper. Fortunately for us, 5 inches wasn't enough to do any damage but a few other homes sustained some minor damage. Lake Sandpiper, having no drainage outlet other than a 2" pump, persisted for a week. That was but a single thunderstorm. I used to live in a rural area in Missouri. We had a thunderstorm that dropped 11 inches of rain in one hour. It was an amazing to watch the water come down in such a torrent. Immediately, the local river became a rolling current, filling it's banks and then spilling over into adjacent agricultural fields. Tiny creeks became impassible, low areas flooded and became stagnant for weeks. Crops died from excess water, people were delayed on their way home but no one died and the area recovered almost without any concern or help being necessary. Harvey is a different matter. Harvey is a succession of such storms. And the storms aren't falling on an agricultural area, not even a hilly area, Houston and many of the other towns along the Gulf Coast are on the coastal plain, a wide flat area along the coast of Texas that extends from Louisiana all the way to Mexico. Drainage is slow in flat areas particularly when they are only a few feet above sea level. Add to that the fact that much of the Houston area is covered with pavement which doesn't absorb water but sheds it into nearby ditches. Pavement isn't the only impermeable area, homes themselves have roofs which are by design impermeable. Who would buy a leaky roof? So lawns and parks are the primary areas that absorb water when it rains. Urban areas are particularly prone to flooding. I can recall a visit to Houston many years ago, on our way from Fort Sam Houston in San Antonio to Fort Bragg, NC. We were visiting some relatives that lived there. During our visit a short thunderstorm passed over the area. Upon leaving, we saw significant street flooding. Nothing that prevented our travel but we drove through six inches of water in places. So Houston and it's surroundings are prone to flooding and Harvey is the perfect storm for the area. I'm not ignoring other towns, many towns further south along the shore took the brunt of the winds of Harvey. There have been many clips on the news showing the destroyed buildings. Some towns are nearly completely leveled. Fortunately the death toll in those towns is amazing low. Within Houston, the disaster is multiplied by millions of lives. A city has problems that no other area has. The density of population multiplies the inconvenience, loss of life, financial loss by millions. Ability to move the population, evacuate the area, is highly limited by the sheer numbers that are involved. The after-effects of this storm are going to be sobering. Katrina and now Harvey have inflicted huge losses and pain on populations in large cities. Anyone involved in disaster planning for large population areas should be alarmed and should be working to re-evaluate their disaster plans. Metropolitan planning needs to account for population density and evacuation routes and plans need to be studied and improved. We can do better if we will learn from the past and present. Our home in Edinburg, Texas was spared. Harvey hit land far enough north that people staying in our park sent messages via Facebook and other communication letting us know through pictures of sunrises and sunsets and words advising us of no wind, no rain, that all was well in Sandpipers. In fact, announcements about RV Parks recently have focused on a very few that are taking storm refugees. I can't imagine a park that wouldn't take refugees from Harvey if space were available. In the RGV there are about 80 parks that will accommodate thousands of RV's during the winter. Those parks are largely empty right now and could provide a place for RV refugees to stay. If you are looking for a place to go with your RV to get out of the way of the clean-up, call any of the parks in the RGV. With luck you may even get a site that might last through the winter. There is no doubt that complete recovery will take years. Tonight I sit in a safe and secure place but I can imagine the intense concern and dread of those in the Houston area. It's called empathy, a normal human emotion. Don't fight it, consider your life and what you would feel if you lived in the Houston or central coastal area of Texas or Louisiana tonight. Our thoughts are with those in the grip of the storm tonight and into the future. "Lake Sandpiper" April 10, 2015
  3. Two weeks ago the wife and I enjoyed a five day "long weekend" respite from our busy careers and craziness of Houston by visiting the Texas Hill / Wine Country. We stayed at the Sunset Point RV Resort on Lake LBJ near Marble Falls, TX. It is a small, quiet, very spacious RV resort with amenities for adults / teenage children (there are no playgrounds, swimming pool, hot tub, etc.) that was a perfect location to "de-stress" --> http://www.sunsetpointlbj.com/ The cost was $47 per night with the FMCA or Good Sam discounts. The office folks were very friendly and helpful. The Flat Creek, Spicewood and Perissos wineries are short drives from Sunset Point (Perissos was our favorite --> http://perissosvineyards.com/) Attached is a my favorite "de-stressor" photo I took at Sunset Point while drinking a glass of Perissos' Anglianico and enjoying the resort's "namesake" Also near by for folks who tow a Jeep Wrangler or other 4x4 is the Hidden Falls Adventure Park that has great, challenging trails for "stock" Wranglers like mine and for Wranglers/4x4's with lots of off-road modifications. Hidden Falls is privately owned and charges a $40 fee for driver/rider. It was money well spent for a four hour afternoon of "4-wheelin" which I hadn't done in 20 years (see attached photos). Here's the link to their website --> http://www.hiddenfallsadventurepark.com/ Hidden Falls has a small RV park that I wouldn't recommend (very dusty with all the Jeeps and ATVs bouncing around the place). The Marble Falls area also has good dining and antique stores to spend your hard earned money. Marble Falls / Lake LBJ area is a great place to visit!
  4. We are going to be in Texas for the month of January, home (NC) for February and then Arizona for March for FMCA. Instead of driving home after our Texas tour we are considering leaving the coach in either Fort Worth or Austin, flying home and then flying back in about three weeks to continue our trek to Arizona. It will surely be easier on the coach and our bodies and I “think” in the long run it will be less expensive. Can anyone give me any ideas on where we could keep the RV in either of those areas? Are there any local RV parks that we could consider? An RV friend suggested we do this but I am at a loss as how to even start the process. Any suggestions would be most appreciated!
  5. tlshoe17

    Cedar Wax Wing

    From the album: Early Spring in Texas

    © SweetP Photography-Pam Shoemaker

  6. tlshoe17

    Cedar Wax Wing

    From the album: Early Spring in Texas

    © SweetP Photography-Pam Shoemaker

  7. tlshoe17

    Purple Weed

    From the album: Early Spring in Texas

    Beauty can be found where ever you look

    © SweetP Photography-Pam Shoemaker

  8. From the album: Early Spring in Texas

    Our winter home for this year...ready to move on soon!

    © SweetP Photography-Pam Shoemaker

  9. tlshoe17

    Bluebird

    From the album: Early Spring in Texas

    © SweetP Photography-Pam Shoemaker

  10. We spent Sunday night at the Wal-Mart on the north side of Tucson. Monday morning we were out just after rush hour. Making the turn from traveling southward from Oregon, we now turn into the sun in the early morning, heading east toward Texas. Traffic through Tucson on I-10 is heavy but not as bad as some city driving. About 30 miles out of Tucson the traffic begins to thin out and travel becomes easier. Tucson isn't far from the eastern border of Arizona so we are quickly into New Mexico and the switch to Mountain Daylight Time. Our day is suddenly one hour shorter which adds some incentive to keep the wheels turning. Travel is relatively easy as we pass many little dots on the map, small towns in a sparsely settled part of the country. The passage over the continental divide is as easy on I-10 as anywhere in the US. If there wasn't a sign you would not suspect that you have passed over the divide. We've never stopped to see the THING! We laugh about it every time we see all the billboards and maybe some day we'll pass by here on a more relaxed schedule and make a stop just so we can see the THING. Las Cruces is the largest town on this stretch of I-10 until we reach El Paso. I-25 joins I-10 in Las Cruces and the traffic increases, more cars and lots more trucks. This is the warm up for the passage through El Paso. There is a loop highway around El Paso and the traffic is lighter but we seldom take that route. Looking at a map, we should make that the regular route through the area but it seems that I-10 just holds on to us and we stay with I-10 through the city. At Las Cruces the I-10 turns southward and it continues right along the southern border of the US south of El Paso. Looking over the Rio Grande River in the area, you can see the mountains of Mexico. We began to encounter scattered rain showers along this stretch and those stayed with us through the rest of the afternoon and evening. One of the bonuses of driving in rain showers is rainbows. Since we are driving east in the afternoon, the sun behind us shines into the rain shafts ahead and we see some specatcular rainbows against the dark sky of the next rain clouds. The colors are really vivid when there is a dark sky to contrast with the rainbow and we thoroughly enjoyed a variety of views during the afternoon and evening hours. Traveling east, I-10 joins I-20 at its western end at mile marker 186 near the town of, well there isn't a town anywhere near. Kent is seven miles west of the junction so I guess that counts. It is about this point that we transition to Central Daylight Time, losing another hour of travel time. Staying with I-10 we continue on to Fort Stockton. Our first choice for a campground is no longer in business so we continue on through town to a one-time KOA, now Fort Stockton RV Park. It is just off the highway on some terrible road that only gets worse as you enter the campground. We arrived well after dark and had to pick our own site from the two or three that were available. We picked our way along the muddy roads to find a site that would work. Louise helped position the coach by letting me know when to stop to stay out of the road. The site looks like the toad is still in the roadway behind us but it is a wide roadway. In the morning I could see that it really was clear, what looked like road was just a muddy rocky part of the site. Clearly this was not a deluxe site. It was quiet and dark and we slept well, got showers and emptied the gray water tank before we left in the morning. We woke to the sounds of rain on Tuesday morning as a series of showers passed over us. A check of the radar showed that we should take advantage of the brief break in the storm to disconnect and get underway as a more steady rain was approaching us from the south. Back on I-10 we drove in a steady rain for about two hours before breaking out into sunshine. We made a stop for fuel at the Tres Amigos quick shop. I'm finding that stopping at small fuel stations has a fun side. There was a work crew at this one, filling up their trucks. One of them struck up a conversation and expressed his appreciation for our motor home. He had time for half a dozen questions before his tank filled. Diesel at $3.599 looked pretty good for the area but I got only 35 gallons which would get us into San Antonio where I expected cheaper fuel. We would get into San Antonio before nightfall. San Antonio would be an overnight stop for us. About an hour down the road we pulled in at the Segovia Truck Stop and filled up with diesel at $3.399, Saving 20 cents a gallon on 75 gallons amounted to a savings of $15 from what it would have cost at the Tres Amigos. We didn't see fuel any cheaper than the $3.399 for the rest of our trip until we pulled into the Wal-Mart in Edinburg. Thanks to Gas Buddy for helping us find this bargain. We pulled into the Cummins Southern Plains on I-35 at 4:15 in the afternoon, checked in and parked for the night in front of their shop. We unhooked the toad and backed up to the building. We were parked between the building and the I-35 access road, less than 300 feet from I-35. When local traffic on I-35 slows down it is quickly replaced by the over the road truckers. The whine of truck tires is nearly constant through the night. The next morning we turn over the keys and head for the Cracker Barrel next door. After breakfast we return to the motor home and relax waiting for the service tech to show up and run us out of our home. We've been making this stop a regular for many years. It is a last service stop before we park the motor home for the winter. I like to park with fresh oil and clean filters for the engine and the generator, ready for the next season of travel. No matter what direction we are traveling we'll usually come through San Antonio and since this shop is just a few miles north of I-10 and on I-35, we manage to be near it almost every year. Purely by coincidence our best friends were at Iron Horse RV just 5 miles north. After a series of phone calls, we decide to do lunch on the River Walk together. We picked them up and spent a pleasant afternoon together. The BBQ at the County Line Restaurant was good and the walk was welcome exercise after four days of near constant driving. We enjoyed the shops of the Little Village and the fun of watching the birds and the tourists. As we were returning to the car our friends got a phone call from the repair shop, their replacement air conditioner was installed and working. When we returned to Cummins we were told that they had discovered a leak in the gaskets on the exhaust manifold. I asked if they could be replaced and they gave me an estimate. I authorized the repair realizing we wouldn't have time to make the 200 mile drive to our south Texas home that afternoon. We would be a day later than we had hoped in returning home. We called to let our friends know. We decided to join them at Iron Horse after our repairs were completed. I had noticed some water leaks in our new windshield when we traveled through the rain showers the day before. They were just little trickles but they shouldn't be there. I had the windshield re-sealed at Iron Horse late in the afternoon. We would overnight there, pay the bill in the morning and be on our way south in a two coach caravan with our friends. Thursday morning we left Iron Horse at 9:00 . From I-35 we take the I-410 loop south to I-37 which is the Interstate route to Corpus Christi. The ramp to southbound I-37 was closed so we had to divert onto I-37 N and do a U-turn which added about 5 miles to the trip. US 281 departs I-37 where the interstate turns southeastward. We stopped in George West for a quick lunch stop. Then we were on the road to Edinburg, Texas, our winter home. We parted ways with our friends at Edinburg. They wanted to stop to fill up their tank at Flying J. I had decided to get diesel at the Wal-Mart since we also needed some groceries. Louise would shop while I filled the tank and added the stabilizer to the fuel. Diesel was $3.329 at Wal-Mart. Our friends joined us for dinner at our campground that evening. Home at last!
  11. Suva is the capital city of Fiji. It is located on the southeast side of Viti Levu, the largest island in the Fiji Islands. Our cruise started when we departed the western side of the island from Lautoka. Suva is the largest city in Fiji. Within view of our ship at the dock we can see the downtown area of Suva. There is a huge bus station. Most of the inhabitants don’t own automobiles so they depend heavily on public transportation. There are three large sheds, each with a half dozen parking spots for the city busses. A constant flow of busses into and out of this area indicates the thriving nature of this city. Located right next to the bus depot is a huge vegetable market. We walked through the market marveling at the amazing variety of food displayed for sale. There were vendors with tables full of fruits and vegetables. Many vendors simply had a cloth spread on the pavement with their wares displayed for sale there. Leaving the market we walked toward the larger buildings. We browsed our way through several shops and stores. This would be our last shopping stop in Fiji and the last for the cruise. We picked up a final few Fiji souvenirs at a shop which featured goods made by local artists. Louise found a shop that sold Indian garb. After selecting a few scarves for our granddaughters she tried on a sari and fell in love with it. She picked out accessories to complete the ensemble and then wore it for the evening meal and entertainment. The overnight cruise returned us to our starting point in Lautoka where we disembarked at 9:00 a.m. We had reserved a hotel, the Gateway Hotel in Nadi, for the night which would allow us to adjust for any schedule changes in the cruise schedule. Nadi is the location of the international airport and the Gateway Hotel was right across the road from the airport. The Gateway turned out to be a delightful surprise. The hotel was really nice with excellent rooms and beautiful grounds. The staff welcomed us and checked us into our room well before normal check-in time. They also knew our flight would not be leaving until late the next day and extended our check-out time to noon. We enjoyed meals and relaxing at the hotel. The extended check-out time gave us time in the room the next morning to do our final packing for our trip back to the US. On Sunday evening, June 15 we boarded a Fiji Airlines flight to Los Angeles. After flying through the night and crossing the International Date Line, we arrived in Los Angeles at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, June 15, approximately 7 hours before we left Nadi, Fiji. In Los Angeles we now had a seven hour wait for our flight back to Houston and on to McAllen, Texas. We finally arrived in McAllen at 9:00 a.m. on Monday, June 16 and took a taxi to our house at Sandpipers Resort in Edinburg. We were back home for the first time since leaving for New Zealand, Australia and Fiji on January 29, 2014. It had been one fantastic vacation.
  12. Planning on visiting the South Texas area, mainly the Gulf shores during late summer (August ). Any suggestions on a campground with electrical and water hook-up, beach-side? Thank you.
  13. I am Tom, my wife is Louise. I'll not spend time on further introductions. If you want more information, please see our Meet a Member feature under Join FMCA on the main menu of the FMCA page. I promise you more information than you could possibly want to know. Even my friend Pipewrenchgrip said he read MOST of it!!! I have been very active on the FMCA Community the last few days. We are away from our motor home doing babysitting for my daughter and her husband. Grandson Ryan and granddaughter Kaitlyn are pretty good most of the time so I have time on my hands while they are busy. We are in Foristell, Missouri (Go Tigers!) where the temperatures are 50 degrees right now. Our motor home sits in Edinburg, Texas where the temperature is 100 degrees today! Glad we left the air conditioner set or we'd find the interior melted when we got back. Speaking of Tigers, was that a great game last night or what?? I guess that depends on your perspective. From the Missouri bench it was fantastic. Sorry Memphis fans. I'm speaking Elite Eight in the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Tournament. We'll fly Southwest Airlines back to Harlingen (about an hour East of Edinburg) tomorrow and be in our cozy home by evening. Pipewrenchgrip, Bill and Laura, will have dinner for us tomorrow evening. Sure hope I can convince them to tune the NCAA for the Mizzou game. They have been watching our rig while we are gone. This is a duty we've traded off during the winter for the last seven years. Harlingen, Edinburg, McAllen are all in extreme southern Texas in an area known as the Rio Gande Valley. You have to look at a map or drive there to really appreciate how far South these cities are. Our latitude is about equal to the southern tip of Florida. We are much further South than Yuma or San Diego. In fact, Amarillo Texas is closer to Fargo, North Dakota than it is to Brownsville, Texas! Mild winters and hot summers rule. We usually arrive about the end of October and depart for cooler climes in mid April. Our community is a close knit "family" and springtime brings the sorrow of parting. Being one of the last winter visitors to leave means saying good bye to everyone one at a time. Most of them will return but there are a few every year who we won't see for some time. We have a directory that lists all who want to be listed and use it to plan visits when we are near our friends. Enough for today, got to leave something to say in the future. Look for more information once or twice a week.
  14. It's been a shocking month and a half since I've written about our motor home and the experiences it brings us. There are many excuses: busy lives, family challenges, etc. Most of all, there has been little activity involving the motor home. We parked the motor home in the driveway next to our new mobile home at Sandpipers on October 13. I buttoned her down with window sun screens, and tire covers. Then we began to unload our gear from the closets and cabinets. This was new territory for us. For the last 9 1/2 years we have been living in a motor home. We unloaded one motor home before this one and that was a direct transfer from the old motor home to the new. I carried drawers from the old motor home out the door of the old, two steps on the ground, and right into the new motor home. Louise unloaded them, packing them away in the new motor home, and I brought the drawers back to the old motor home. Three days and we were on our way in a new home! Now we were moving into a house. The half-empty motor home will sit beside our home until spring when we head north to escape the heat of the south Texas summer. The refrigerator was emptied post haste. It was near failing and we were glad to shut it down. Will it ever run again? Only time will tell. Some clothes came out right away, others as the occasion demanded. One of those rare times when I needed a pair of dress slacks I had to hustle into the motor home and dig into the closet to bring several pairs into the house. I reluctantly unpacked my tools as the jobs in the house began to pile up. After a while, my focus is on getting the house in operating condition. I'm spending less and less time in the motor home. When we returned home we made a stop at a inspection station to have the motor home inspected. We weighed in at the Flying J as we needed a weight ticket for our license plates. We planned to take it out one more time for our driving test to get our Texas drivers licenses. With that in mind, we didn't refuel on our way home. We would do that after we had completed the driving test. Shortly before Thanksgiving, Louise called the drivers license bureau to get specific details of the testing procedure. She was told we would not need to take a test and could get our license by turning in our South Dakota licenses. So we picked up all the required paperwork and headed off to the license bureau. After waiting in line for two hours, we arrived at the counter. Anna Marie efficiently worked her way through our paperwork and issued us our Texas drivers license. After checking her computer, she apparently found the information that equated our South Dakota operator license with the Texas Class B license. We were able to exchange our South Dakota drivers licenses for a Texas Class B license required to drive a motor home greater than 26,000 pounds without having to take a written or driving test! Louise was visibly relieved. Every time I had mentioned the impending test to her she got this graven look on her face that said she really didn't want to face the test now or later. I was greatly relieved because I was beginning to think that I was going to be the only driver of the motor home. So now we didn't have to take the motor home out for the test. But there it sits, with a partial tank of fuel and no fuel preservative. So I pulled the tire covers off and removed the sun screens. Several hours going through the interior to ensure that it was secure and we're ready to make a run to the Flying J. Now that I've done that, I am in the process of parking the motor home for the winter. Unlike my northern neighbors, I don't worry about securing the motor home against freezing temperatures. Here, the sun is a constant worry so the sun screens and tire covers go back on the motor home. Tires are protected from the concrete by parking on a set of boards that also help level the motor home. It will be plugged in to keep all systems live and the leveling system will be kept active. We'll keep the furnace active, set at a low temperature to conserve fuel but warm enough to prevent freezing of the water pipes when temperatures drop low during the winter. I'm working on the routine maintenance items, tire pressure, flushing the water heater, cleaning the furnace, etc. This will continue on and off through the winter with the goal of being ready to hit the road next spring. Having a house is nice but it has it's own challenges. I have a whole new set of tasks to keep me busy. I'll keep dreaming of the next trip, the new territory to be explored and new friends to see. The motor home will be there to remind me that there is still a whole world out there to be explored!
  15. It all started as we prepared to depart from a one-night stay at a campground on Matagorda Bay in Texas. We couldn't resist a morning walk along the seawall in Palacios. When we returned I completed most of the outside work while Louise cooked breakfast. French toast was delicious and welcome on this cool coastal morning. We were just beginning to clean up the kitchen when Louise reached for the refrigerator door to put something away. She pulled the right-hand door on the two-door Norcold 1200LRIM just as she had hundreds of times before. This time the door came off the refrigerator and dropped to the floor! The bottom of a bottle of wine broke from the bottle. A plastic container of tea dropped to the floor and the lid popped off. A variety of other jars and bottles rattled on the floor with the trays that contained them. Louise stood there in shock - holding the door and just looking at this completely unexpected mess on the floor. I finally took the door from Louise's hands and placed it on the floor out of the way. We used half a roll of paper towels to clean up the liquids and rinsed the other containers before putting them back in the half-open refrigerator. As Louise continued with the cleanup I began to analyze the door and the hinge on the refrigerator. How had this unimaginable mess occurred? My post-crash analysis showed a piece of plastic about 2 inches long by 3/8 inch that was held in place by two screws with a metal plate of similar dimensions backing the plastic. Further analysis showed a screw hole in the bottom of the door - but no screw. We had lost a key screw in the door and the door had been hanging by the plastic for who-knows-how-long. When the plastic failed, there was nothing to hold the door on the lower hinge. The upper hinge is simply a pin on the refrigerator that inserts into a hole in the door. Since the pin is inserted from above, the entire weight of the door rests on the lower hinge. When the lower hinge fails, the door falls and "down will come cradle, baby and all!" So if you have this model of refrigerator, get down on the floor and look up under the hinge to see that the screw that anchors the door to the hinge is still in place. Without it, the door will eventually fail. I found that I could put the door on the upper hinge and, with the lower hinge in the open position, the hinge supported the door while the vertical section pinned the door against the refrigerator. The door doesn't open normally, but we can reach around to get anything stored on the right side of the refrigerator. A healthy application of Gorilla Tape made sure that the door didn't move off the lower hinge. There was one small glitch: The door kept dropping out of its latch, which sets off a beeping alarm. Louise can't stand to listen to the beep, so I got a few washers to insert under the door to lift it about 3/16 inch and that did the trick. No more beeping. We traveled non-stop for about six hours before arriving at Rayne, Louisiana, just before sunset. This is a place of special memories for us. We purchased our current motor home at a rally at Rayne. There is a convention center with hundreds of RV hookups. We were told to stop by any time the facilities weren't in use and stay overnight or for a few days. Sure enough, the convention center was completely empty. We pulled in, followed shortly by another motor home. We talked briefly with them. We were looking for 50A, they were happy with 30A. We went on to look for our spot. We arrived at a point where a turn was going to be difficult, so I elected to drive through the dump station. We were almost back to the main road when, WHOA! I hit the brakes. There, resting on the windshield right at eye level was an electrical wire, a single cord of insulated wire supported by and wound around a bare metal wire. It was twilight and I felt lucky to have even spotted it in time to stop. It would likely have cracked the windshield or even worse if it slipped off the windshield onto the front cap of the motor home. I put Louise into the drivers seat and went outside to assess the situation. We could unhook the car, 20 minutes, and then hook up the car in the morning, another 30 minutes. Or I could find something to raise the wire above the motor home. One option was to get on the roof and walk the wire down the roof as we passed under. Then I thought of the wash brush. With its extended handle and a rubber covered handle, I thought it would work. We started off and I had to shout instructions through the window to tell Louise if there was a problem. After a short trial, I moved to the other side of the coach and used a radio to communicate with Louise. We eased our way along without a hitch, over the satellite dome, the front air conditioner, fan vents and sewer vent. Finally the back air conditioner and the ladder and we were free! We found a place to hook up and plugged in. In about 30 minutes a city employee showed up to collect our camping fee. Water, electric and a dump station for $20 a night. I told the employee about the low-hanging wire. We had encountered more than our usual challenges in a single day on the road. The refrigerator was working, maybe better than before. The encounter with the wire hadn't damaged the motor home - or me. We slept well that night. The next morning, the electrical company was out with a truck and secured the line. We were on down I-10 headed for Montgomery, Alabama, and our next adventure.
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