May 17 Friday, 2013
The love bugs are all but gone now! Yippee!! The damn things were so bad on Monday and Tuesday we didn't really go outside.
I took the truck to Wesley Chapel Ford on Monday to get the AC checked out. I found out that the AC is covered under the extended warranty with a $100 deductible. Believe me there is nothing under $100 on this size truck! Even an oil change is $107 last time I had it done. Come to find out I need to have the condenser replaced at a cost of $425 which I thought was very reasonable. Also found out that the truck has a leaking pinion seal. All of this work would be $750 but just cost us $200 under the warranty from Wholesale Warranties. So far I am very pleased with this warranty company.
I waited at Ford until noon when they told me that truck would not be done until around 6 in the evening. So Ford gave me ride back to the RV. Then around 5 Ford called and said that the wrong condenser was sent so the truck would be done first thing in the morning. Not a problem for us at that point. The next day, Tuesday, Ford called and said the truck would be done by the end of the day. They said that the shop air compressor failed and was being fixed. The mechanics didn't have air to run their air tools. Then at 5 Ford called and said the air isn't fixed yet and asked if I would like a loaner car. I took them up on the loaner as we needed to get some stuff at Wal-Mart and it would be easier to go get the truck when they were done with it.
The truck was finally finished on Wednesday evening and the AC works great again! A good thing as it was 91 degrees when I picked up the truck. Just want to say that I really like driving the truck over a car. The loaner car, Ford Focus, was very low to the ground and has huge blind spots with little mirrors. In the truck I don’t need move my head much at all to see all around and over everything on the road. Cars now just seem so unsafe now!
Friday we went for a bike ride on the Upper Tampa Bay Trail. The trail is about 12 miles south from us. This is another Rails to Trails trail. We have come to love these trails as they are mostly flat and do not have motorized vehicles on them. The Upper Tampa Bay Trail is just over 7 miles long. We accessed the trail about ¾ of a mile from the north end and rode all the way to the South end and then back for a total of 13 miles. That is a good ride for us. The ride took us around 2 hours with water breaks and me taking pictures.
|Patty's folding bike rides here behind the drivers seat.|
|Bridge over the highway|
|Rickety wooded Bridge|
|Another cool bridge|
|Tree canopy along the trail, Patty way up ahead.|
|Bridge under the RR tracks|
The bike trails here in Florida are absolutely GREAT! We are going to miss these when we go north. Between the many free beaches and pedestrian paths and sun, Florida makes so very easy to be outside. We are not so sure Texas next winter can live up to our experiences here in Florida.
Friday night we took a sunset wine cruise at Pier 60 in Clearwater Beach in the Gulf of Mexico. The weather and sky were perfect for a sunset. We have seen sunsets in Hawaii but the one last night was the best I have ever seen. It was 80 degrees with just a light sea breeze from the west and smooth water. The boat just glided effortlessly out into the blue/green waters of the Gulf. As the sun set behind some light clouds the whole shy lit up with streams of light. For about 15 minutes all you could hear were cameras and ooos and ahhhs. The cruise lasted about 2 hours and just cost us $35 which included unlimited wine and beer! Of course we prevailed ourselves of the neverending glass of wine!
|Signing people in for the cruise|
|This is the sunset pirate cruise. Lots of kids with paper pirate hats|
|Another sunset cruise with a shark boat|
|Patty checking out construction on our new beach house, NOT!|
|Our beach house under construction, we wish!|
|Heading out to the Gulf of Mexico|
|Pier 60 from the water|
|Then there was this!|
|Then it was gone|
|Patty taking in the sunset and views|
Now, a note about rig maintenance. The RV refrigerator developed a broken door handle. We can still use the refrigerator but the top part of the freezer handle is broken. We had planned to have the RV wheel bearings repacked when we are in NJ in July at Camping World of New Jersey in Lakewood. We called them this week to get an appointment for our time in NJ. We also asked if they could replace the refrigerator handle under warranty while we are there. They said they could replace the handle but it would take up to 2 weeks to get there. Also, we found out that the handles are now made of metal instead of plastic like we have. We called Dometic (the manufacturer) and were told the replacement would be metal.
I sent an e-mail to Jeff Rank at Primetime Manufacturing, who built our Sanibel 3500, explaining our issue. The next day Camping World calls us and said that Prime Time is shipping them 4 new refrigerator handles for our Sanibel RV. They will put the handles on when we arrive in July! We have had nothing but good service from Prime Time during the build and while we are on the road. Thanks Jeff!!
|Our fridge. A little cluttered.|
|The broken part of the handle is at the top just left of the middle screw|
This week while staying away from the Love bugs we are just about done with our 2013 travel plan. The basic plan is as follows:
June: Disney World, Indiana, New Jersey
July: Sunny Rest in PA, Friends Driveway in NJ
August: Elmira NY, Buffalo NY, Detroit MI, Mackinaw Island MI, Badlands SD, Devils Tower WY
September: Cody WY, Yellowstone WY, Bryce Canyon UT, Grand Canyon AZ, Petrified Forest AZ
October: Albuquerque NM Balloon Festival, Texas State Fair, Brownsville/South Padre Island TX
November: Rio Grande Valley TX, (Store rig and fly North for Thanksgiving – Christmas)
December: Natures Resort in the Rio Grande Valley TX (This will be our winter spot until March 2014)
This is just the basic plan. We have dozens of stops along the way we add in as we go along.
This week we will be getting ready for Disney and starting our 2013 travel season. This involves, among other things, checking tires, batteries, washing the rig (truck and RV), and repacking the basement storage.
|Our plant Rosy is doing great here in Florida. She has over 30 blooms on her!|