Sunset in PV

Sunset in PV

Friday, July 19, 2013

July 19, 2013 - "Friends and Repairs"

Each year as CC and I begin our travel season, we decide on a theme. Last year it was “National Parks in the West”, and the year before it was “Coastal - Across the Gulf and up the Atlantic”. This year CC chose “Family and Friends” as our focus, and since our last posting, we have been busy doing just that.

While we stayed at Whispering Hills RV Park outside of Georgetown, KY, we got to know the park owners, Pat and Monica. They are good, hardworking people, and their personalities closely matched ours, so friendship was inevitable. They joined us for a few “Happy Hours” with water bottle in hand; understandably no adult beverages for them while on duty. We finally managed a dinner together off site, and had a wonderful time and got to know them better. If you’re ever in the Lexington area, we highly recommend their campground.

Wow, the fourth of July is already upon us; what happened to June? A longtime friend is on assignment working in West Virginia, and living in Pittsburg, PA. We made plans with him and his wife to meet for the holiday. Zanesville, OH was not our first choice, but since we were late in making plans, the Greenbriar Resort in WV was already booked. Oh well, we are more interested in getting together than we are about WHERE it is. We stayed at a cute little place, Wolfie’s Campground, while our friends took up residency at a nearby hotel. We had a great time with Terry and Janice, and thoroughly enjoyed the time we spent with them.

While in Zanesville, we made plans to get together with our “Winter Texan” friends from Ranchero Village, Gary and Becky, who have lived in the area all of their lives. We had lunch at a little lakeside biker bar and then they turned their attention on playing tour guide to a couple of freeloaders. Thanks, Gary and Becky; we had a great time. See ya in Weslaco!

Now where to? CC and I really have no firm travel plans this year. So, we got on Google Maps and go through our Family and Friends list, and decide to head west. The morning we left Zanesville, the front leveling jacks on the rig were not completely retracting. They were up enough to drive, but not up enough to inflate the front air bags on the chassis, which would make driving nearly impossible; definitely NOT recommended. I crawled underneath to see if I could identify any problems, cleaned the ram shafts completely with WD-40 and wiped them almost dry, leaving a fine film on each ram, thinking this would solve the problem…..It didn’t.  Finally with a little coaxing from a make-shift pry bar, I was able to get them up and silence the “jacks down” ringing bell, which sends a signal to the front air bags to inflate.

We stopped in Richmond, IN at Grandpa’s Farm Campground the first night in route to see our friends in Troy, MO, Carl and Carla, also “Winter Texans”. The following morning, same scenario with the front jacks. Living this lifestyle, we live by the mantra, “Our plans are written in the sand”. New destination HWHCorporation in Moscow, IA via Troy, MO. HWH manufactured the leveling jacks and slides for our motor home, and going directly to the factory will ensure they are repaired correctly the first time.

After another travel day we pulled into Camp Lakewood RV Park in Effingham, IN. As we move westward, the temps are definitely increasing. After we got set up, I asked CC if she wanted to go to the pool and cool off, she replied, “They have no pool; only a lake”. OK…….turn down the AC. As we prepared to depart the following morning, our jacks showed no improvement and needed “coaxing” again.

We arrived in Troy, and after some severe “jockeying”, managed to get set up at Carl’s shop; as some would refer to as his “man cave”. Our visit was short, but enjoyable, as Carl and Carla were busy shuffling grandkids from Iowa to Missouri to Kentucky and back again. CC and I both agreed with their style of grand parenting, spoil ‘em rotten, and then give ‘em back to their parents. LOL After all, isn’t that what grandparents are for? We had a great visit, and enjoyed some great food, libations and laughter; did I mention laughter? See you two in Texas, if not before.

Working with HWH in Moscow, IA, is great; they are a pleasure to do business with, and really take customer service to the next level. Too bad the majority of RV Dealers don’t follow suit, for if they did, this lifestyle would be enjoyable 100% of the time. Dealers just want to sell you something, get your money, and then say, “The hell with ya!” We called HWH on a Thursday, and set an appointment for the following Monday. We arrived about 10:30 am, and were told by the service technician that the seals were bad in both front jacks. The cost to re-build would be $311.50 each plus one hour of labor. HWH called our extended warranty provider, and they agreed to cover the cost, less our $100 deductible.

Since we are traveling on I-80, and we have a couple of issues that need to be addressed on the rig, we decided to call Leach Camper Sales of Lincoln, NE, right off I-80. By contrast with the great customer service we received at HWH, we have an appointment with Leach, from whom we purchased this rig, along with their $7,000+ “Priority Service” Extended Warranty, and were first told the earliest they could get us in would be August 6. That’s three WEEKS! Sure didn’t take ‘em that long to take our money in August 2011. “Priority Service”….my ass. They finally shuffled some things around, and said “How about July 30. Will that work?” To which I replied, “Not really, but you’ve got me by the family jewels, so you’re the one calling the shots. What about that VIP Priority Service you promised?” Long pause, and finally they responded, “Well that’s the best we can do.”

CC found a highly rated RV Park just west of Des Moines in Waukee, IA. We checked in for a week at the Timberline Campground, and after set up decided to go for a swim; finally a pool and none too soon, as the heat index is approaching the century mark.

Tonight, we have plans for pizza with Winter Texan neighbors, Dick and Judy, who spend their summers nearby. Tomorrow, more frivolity with another set of Texas neighbors, Walt and Wendy, who still maintain a Spring-Summer-Fall home about 20 miles south of the campground.

Thanks for taking the time to stop by. Until next time, take care and stay well…………….