October 19, 2014 Lorraine’s report
Hello and thanks for stopping by. Another week has flown by and before you know it, Christmas will be here. So we have been just slowing down a bit, after our busy time in Las Vegas. But oh what fun we had while we were there. We went to 4 shows; the last show we had tickets was for “Sin City”, but the night we chose to go, (last evening in Vegas) the show didn’t start until 8:30, which meant it would last until after 10 pm; then the hassle of getting back home. Chuck and I decided it was too late for us, since we would be leaving in the morning before 10 am. I was happy we made it out of Vegas without any major incidents, it’s always hard to come out of that city.
So we made it to the Elks Lodge in West Covina. Chuck had to fix several problems with the rig and worked on it until he completed it. Afterwards we went to a restaurant in town that was owned and operated by a Mexican family. And boy was the food good. Hey Joe and Alice, remember that restaurant we went to in Palm Springs, this restaurant was like that, maybe a bit better. It was excellent!!
The next day we went over to The Fairplex in Pomona to see the R V show. While it was smaller than a FMCA Rally, they had tons of big rigs of every kind there. We walked and walked through lots of them. They had one rig that may, and I mean may, replace our rig. We didn’t have time to drive it, but we watched the video on it and it seemed to maybe take the place of our bus. When we go south this year, we’ll have to go and drive it.
While the show didn’t have any entertainment for the evening, the price to get in didn’t warrant what it would cost to bring in a show.
The next day we were busy, had to get a battery and such. So Chuck was able to find the battery at a Costco and was able to replace it himself. Thank Goodness he is so handy. And I got a flu shot. Boy, did that hurt. It has been swollen and such, not sure why it hurt so badly, but it did.
Friday we left West Covina and headed north on the 101. Boy is that road sure rough! We pulled into Santa Maria, the Elks Lodge #1538. We were lucky and it was a Friday, and the lodge had a full house of rigs pulling in.
This time we met a couple of people, who we invited to eat with us for the BBQ. It was good to meet Louise, Van and Chuck. Nice to meet some of the people who are out doing what we are doing, and seem to be enjoying life, too.
Saturday we drove through town, stopped for a few groceries, then home to watch the WA Huskies lose, and then Stanford lose. It was tough to see our guys lose these games.
And now the Seahawks are losing to St. Louis. But as I write this we are only down by one touchdown. Hopefully, the Seahawks will come out okay. So that is it for me..
I want to wish all our family and friends a happy week…Until next time…
10/19/14 Chuck’s report
Yep, back in California once again. We spend a large portion of our time in this state this time of the year, all the way through the first of the year. Have to spend the holiday with our grand daughter ya know.
Last week we were in Las Vegas, we were there for 16 days, I think. We managed to see some fine shows, toured some of the area, visited some of the casinos and generally had a good time. We both lost overall on the slots but Lorraine had a good run of luck the last few days so neither of us lost a large amount, but whatever, losing is losing.
Last Sunday we did manage to watch the Seattle Seahawks on TV but they lost to Dallas Cowboys. This week we once again are able to watch them, in fact they are on right now, playing the St. Louis Rams. Hope the Seahawks play better and get back on a winning streak.
Monday we headed back to the strip, we had one more free buffet at the Flamingo Casino. We sort of hung around the area for awhile but wanted to get out before the normal heavy traffic started. We stopped at Wal-Mart on the way back and finally picked up Lorraine’s prescription. We had been having a problem with them trying to fill this one, first they didn’t have any and would order some, next the order didn’t show up as expected, then it couldn’t be filled until three days later even though it was over the normal 30 days ?? (finally worked that out with the gal at the drop off counter and got it ordered again) and finally when we got there this time they went back to the can’t fill for two more days stuff until Lorraine told them we worked that out the day before. What a hassle but we had to work with them in order to get it filled.
Tuesday we headed out, boy is the traffic heavy in town. But we were fine once we got a few miles out of town on the freeway, UNTIL – someone pulled up alongside and pointed to coach. Not knowing what the issue was, we, of course, pulled over to check things out. As soon as I got out of the door, I noticed one of the basement doors was opened. Part of our normal routine when we are leaving is I check all the baggage doors, make sure they are closed before I lock them so I know it was closed when we left. This was the baggage door for the battery compartment and I found the door lock was still closed and locked but the hardware with the striker bolt it attaches too had come loose from the coach. Luckily, this hardware was still in the lock so I figured I could just reattach it but I didn’t have the correct bolts I needed. But I do carry lots of duct tape so I just closed the door and duct taped it, good enough until we stopped.
So we continued on our way and got to our planned stop at West Covina Elks Lodge. We got checked in then started setting up. This place only has water and electric (50 amp) at each site with a dump station nearby. Depending on what we have for hookups, I have to change our water supply inside the coach by turning a couple of valves. This time, I needed to close the valve to the reverse osmosis filters and open the one that directs the water straight to the coach. But the valve I needed to close didn’t work, the handle moved but the valve wasn’t operating. I checked the GPS and found an ACE hardware store nearby so figured I would get a new valve and pick up the bolts I needed for the baggage door too.
I couldn’t find the valve I needed but the clerk knew where they were and helped me out. They also had a replacement valve for the other valve I need to move, this one had been getting harder to turn as of late so I returned to the coach, disconnected the second one and returned to the hardware store to get a replacement for it. It only took a few minutes to get these replaced once I had all the parts I needed so now we should be set on these for awhile.
Next I worked on the baggage door but found the bolts I had picked up wouldn’t work. I always check the water level in all our batteries the first of every month and this month I noticed one of the batteries had one cell that was almost empty of water and there was lots of dried battery acid in the compartment. I cleaned the mess up as best I could and refilled the cell with distilled water but when we moved, the same cell was empty and more dried acid was all over the compartment once again, shoot, a bad battery and these are less than two years old.
With all the battery acid being in the compartment it had to run out somewhere and I think it ran out around the bolts holding the door post, allowing the door to come open while driving. The bolts are screwed into a channel iron type and the holes were ate out too much from the acid so the bolts I had picked up didn’t have enough metal to hold, therefore they were too small. I decided to work on this the next day, first I wanted to get a new battery and do all the work in that compartment at the same time.
Next morning we headed out to see the California RV show in Pomona, the main reason we were in this area. We were surprised to find this was almost all RV’s on display, only about 15 vendors selling normal RV stuff, nothing like a RV Rally. I was hoping to talk to some battery guys and get prices but the ones here were only giving out info, didn’t have any batteries and wouldn’t have a mobile guy come to our coach to replace ours.
We did go through lots of coaches while we were there, boy are there some nice ones out there. But we didn’t find any that we wanted enough to change ours, we’re pretty happy with it even though some things are falling apart on us. Now if we were to win a big lottery or something, maybe we would make a deal but without that happening, we’ll stay with ours.
Once we got back to our coach, I called a couple of battery shops that I knew of in the area. One suggested we stop at one of their shops in Ventura, a town that would be along our planned route to here. I called them and the shop manager told me they didn’t have any place for us to park our coach while they worked on it so that place was out of the picture. I gave it up for the day and we went into the lodge for their dinner that night and talked about the RVs we had just seen.
Next morning, Thursday, after thinking about this battery thing, we decided to get a battery and change it out myself. So first off, I had to remove the old one and take it with us, I wanted to insure we got the same size/type replacement. Costco said they didn’t have one until I asked if they happened to have any golf cart batteries and when we checked, it was an exact match, even by the same manufacture. So I picked up one and dropped it off at the car while we finished the rest of our shopping there. One thing we did pick up was two replacement pillows for our bed, we had bought some while in Quartzsite last winter and neither one was holding up well. Lorraine commented after the first night that she slept much better with the new pillow, yea.
While I had the batteries out, I cleaned up the area and drilled new holes for the striker plate that the door locks on to. I used longer bolts that went all the way through the channel iron instead of just replacing the self-starting screws that were original. This shouldn’t cause any more problems, I hope.
I put the batteries back in place and hooked up all the cables, being careful to get them all back in the same place I removed them. When I checked things out, I found the inverter wasn’t working, shoot now what. I checked the circuit breaker and it wasn’t tripped then I checked the display panel and noticed it wasn’t even on. All it took was to turn it back on, not sure why it shut down but must be a safety thing when there is no power from the batteries. But anyway, everything worked after turning it back on so it must have been a successful remove/replace.
Friday morning we got everything ready for travel and headed out for our planned stop here at the Santa Maria Elks Lodge. Once again we found the roads through LA to be in pretty bad shape, especially in the truck lanes we normally use. And the traffic was pretty heavy for the first half hour or so but guess we were expecting that. Otherwise it was an uneventful trip.
The reason we wanted to get here on Friday was for their cook your own dinner they have every Friday. We both had steak and I cooked them on their wood grill. They have salad, potato and fixings back inside the lodge. We had met a couple of folks while standing in line to pay and invited them to sit with us so we had a good dinner as well a good visit with some new friends. They said they were expecting maybe 400 folks for dinner but I think there was less than 200 who were there before we left. But they did have a band playing later that evening so maybe more folks showed up after we left.
Yesterday we tried to find the farmer’s market we had found last time we were in town but it wasn’t there. We did find a much smaller one and only bought a basket of raspberries. We also toured a portion of town that we hadn’t been to yet, nothing exciting.
We’ve had another great week of weather, most days getting to the 80s with lots of blue skies and only dropping to the mid 60s at night. Sure can’t complain about the weather we’ve had this summer and fall. Only issue is they sure could use some rain, things are pretty dry as they are in the midst of a two year drought. But for us, I’m just as happy not to have rain, ha.
Our travel plans are pretty simple, we leave here either tomorrow or Tuesday and head back up to Santa Clara to spend some time with Susy and Katie. Lorraine will be flying up to Alaska to be with our son the first of November so I’ll be playing bachelor for two weeks while she is gone. I’m planning on moving the coach to Morgan Hill 1000 Trails park while she is gone as the Elks have changed their rules and I can’t stay there more than two weeks. But I’ll be able to move back to the Elks when she returns and we’ll stay there for awhile while we make our future plans.
I’ll go through the pictures Lorraine has taken this week, see which ones to add here and get this posted.
Just watched the Seahawks lose another game, sure a different team than last year. They did play better the second half but the first half was no fun for a Seahawk fan.
Welcome to California, even with all the negatives it’s still not a bad place to visit/be.
Still lots of open spaces in this state but mostly desert or mountains.
That’s Los Angles in the distance on the right.
Don’t see pickup loads of oranges back home, apples maybe but not oranges.
Main office for ABC in LA.
Lorraine spotted this Jack-O-Lateran as we were driving.
Lots of vegetables growing around Oxnard area.
The Pacific ocean once again, never get tired of seeing it, especially in the sun shine.
Another Jack-O-lantern, this one is a big balloon.
Guess that’s enough, will get this posted now.