Sunset in PV

Sunset in PV

Monday, November 21, 2011

November 12 - 20, 2011 "Customs and Border Patrol & Día de la Revolución"

Find more about Weather in Weslaco, TX
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Current weather here at 7 am is 77 degrees and 77% humidity. Weather in the Rio Grande Valley (RGV) is normally breezy; some days winds of 20 - 35 mph, and some days only 5 - 10 mph when a cold front is approaching. So far in the 2 weeks we’ve been here, there has only been one day too cool to make use of the heated swimming pool and hot tub. It’s currently 23 degrees in Denver, CO, so I shouldn’t complain, right? (As usual, click on any image to enlarge.)

This year our spot at Country Sunshine faces southwest, so the predominantly southern winds are, for the most part, blocked by the rig, when we sit on the patio. We also have shade most of the day, until around 4 pm. Most days are too windy to use the propane grill, and I’ve been tempted to get a charcoal grill, which would work well, but need to once again de-clutter the basement to make room for it. That task is on my “to do” list this week, as we both miss not being able to grill / BBQ.

Last week, we had the opportunity to tour the Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) Station here in Weslaco. They started with a brief introduction followed by two short films outlining the responsibilities of CBP, which are also available online at their website. We were then given the nickel tour of non-sensitive areas including their vehicle lot and booking/detention area. While we were there, they were processing 4 individuals; 3 Mexican males, and a 16 year old male from Honduras. The kid looked extremely clean for traveling so far, but was visibly perplexed regarding his impending future in the US. We were told he had contacted a cousin here, and if that person came forward and could prove they had the ways and means to accommodate him, he would be allowed to go with them by way of a temporary visa.

One of the CBP officers told us they process about 1,000 illegals per month in the Weslaco sector alone. There are 5 sectors in the RGV, which translates to 60,000 illegals per year that get apprehended. The first 2 times each one is apprehended they are sent back to Mexico. For the US to legally arrest/convict/imprison them, CBP must catch them illegally entering the US 3 times. The vehicles used in these apprehensions are subjected to the elements common to this area; sand, water and mud, as most of the intruders simply swim across the Rio Grande River.

Of course, no week would be complete without at least one trip across the border to Nuevo Progreso. As we have become creatures of habit, first stop is Pancho’s Pharmacy to see Tony, who IMHO, makes the best $2 margarita in town. (Do we look like we’re having fun?) Last year, CC conditioned herself to the point of consuming 2 and still being able to walk across the bridge. This trip, however, she stopped at one. It takes awhile to build up your stamina to take on two, but if anyone is capable, CC is, without a doubt, hands down, up for the challenge. Next week her “goal” is 1 ½ . After margaritas, the group went to Angel’s for lunch, and I must say, eating here last year was much better. Will we return???

What a surprise it was that we just happened to be in Nuevo Progreso (NP) on November 20, 2011, Mexico celebrated the Centennial Anniversary of its Revolution, Día de la Revolución. On this date, in the year 1910 the revolutionary war to overthrow the dictator Porfirio Díaz, began. Parades and fiestas are part of the celebration. NP is a town of 9,000 and it seemed as there were an abundance of children of all ages participating in the parade. In the picture below, note the mustaches on the young boys.

There were numerous “floats”(?), some simply decorated trailers, while others decorated pickup trucks. The one thing they all had in common; all had their own PA system with blaringly LOUD music playing. For those of you unfamiliar with Mexico and planning to visit, be prepared for loud music all hours of the day and night; it is their national right and part of their culture.

This group of young girls, dressed in period costumes, complete with rifles to ward off the evil enemy. Some of the rifles were made from painted cardboard or thin plywood, while others carried their brother’s toy gun.

And of course, no parade would be complete without the equestrians; complete with donkey, the official horse of Mexico.

We are once again having a great time at our winter home in Weslaco. New people are arriving everyday as they flee the colder climates to the north. This Thursday we will have the potluck Thanksgiving Dinner at the Clubhouse around noon, and back again at 5 pm for leftovers, for anyone that didn’t get enough to eat at dinner. We will NOT be in attendance for leftovers.

We want to wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving, and hope you acknowledge the holiday as it was meant to be celebrated. CC and I are truly thankful for all we have and feel truly blessed everyday to be living this enlightening, enlivening lifestyle.

Until next time, take care, stay well, and thanks for dropping by……………..

Monday, November 14, 2011

November 14, 2011 "Thank You Dometic"

Every once in awhile, fate or karma has a way of smiling on you, AND that ol' Murphy rascal is nowhere to be found. 

Mr. Fester,

Have Camping World give me a call here at Dometic and I will send them another part to fix your refrigerator. My name is Lucille, please have them reference RGA 5427XX. 

If you are in need of any Dometic refrigerator or air conditioner or A& E awning parts you can call us at 1-800-544-4881 or purchase from any dealer or Camping World location.

If we can be of any future service do not hesitate to contact us. Thank you for choosing Dometic product lines.

Customer Support Center
Dometic LLC

So, I called CW and spoke with Eddie, and HOPEFULLY he will get us scheduled in for the repair, and then I can actually believe that, "Yes Virginia, there is a Santa Claus!"

Take care and stay well..................

Saturday, November 12, 2011

November 1 - 12, 2011 "San Antonio RV"

In my previous posting I was so impressed with San Antonio RV; not so much now. Originally on October 25, when I called Allen telling him we were in route to San Antonio, and would be arriving on Wednesday the 26, he scheduled to replace the part on our refrigerator on Thursday or Friday, October 27 – 28, but that didn’t happen. I spoke to him on Friday afternoon, October 28, and he claimed he had been extremely busy, and it was too late in the day (3:30 pm) to make it happen, but he would be at our rig “first thing Monday morning”. When I pressed him for a time, he responded with, “I’ll call you when I’m on my way”.

It is now 1:30 pm on Monday afternoon, October 31 and have not seen or heard from Allen, so I decided to call him, and the call went directly to voice mail. I left a message to please call me and let me know what to expect. No call back from Allen.

It is now 7 pm, and I call him once more, and the call goes to voice mail. I again leave him a message to call me, and to inform him we would be leaving the San Antonio area around noon on Tuesday, November 1; and further if he could possibly get the job done first thing Tuesday morning. No call back from Allen. Now we are really in a quandary; do we stay or do we go?

Tuesday morning I called Allen at 8 am, and guess what? Voice mail again.  I left another message asking for him to return my call and let me know what to expect. We waited around until noon; check out time at Braunig Lake, and departed San Antonio without hearing from Allen.

We arrived at Camping World (CW) in Mission, TX a little after 4 pm, and proceeded to the service counter to check in for our appointment. I spoke with Eddie at CW and asked if we could just boondock for the night, instead of driving 20 miles to Weslaco and then returning in the morning. He said, “no problemo”.

Wednesday morning I asked Eddie at CW if he could fix our refrigerator. He took the necessary information and said he would call Dometic. A couple of days later on Friday, Eddie called and informed me Dometic would not ship an additional part, as one had already been shipped to Allen at San Antonio RV, and it was my responsibility to contact Allen and either get him to ship the part to me, or return it to Dometic. OK, another call to Allen yielded the same result; voicemail and he didn’t/hasn’t returned my call.

Now I’m really in a pickle. Could something awful have happened to Allen or his family, and that is the reason for not returning my calls? Or, is he not returning my calls for other reasons? Guess I’ll try AGAIN on  Monday, November 7, to call Allen; maybe I’ll get lucky.

I’m going to think positive thoughts as I dial the number (210) 359-9660. Ring….ring….ring…Voice mail. So I leave yet another message for him to return my call or please ship the part to me or back to Dometic, and offered to pay him for his time to do so. End result, no call back from Allen.

OK, it is now Thursday, November 10, and decide to try again, but this time there is a new greeting on his voice mail, stating he will be out of the office from November 11, returning on Tuesday morning, November 15. So I know, at the very least, he is still alive.

I have also sent an e-mail to Dometic, outlining the chain of events and the outcome so far. I’m hoping to get this resolved, but right now, I don’t feel as confident as I did a month ago. Is this the norm for Customer Service in 2011?

Until next time, take care and stay well………………….