HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BENNIE !!
My sweet little guy is 11 years old today. Prior to Bennie, I had Skipper. This is a pic of one of the (many) pics I have of when Skipper was a baby.
Skipper got very sick suddenly when he was only 5 years ago and went to puppy heaven 11 years ago today. For some unknown reason, Skipper was my BABY Sister’s (Debbie) favourite. And he went to puppy heaven on her Birthday.
A few months later I got Bennie. Now when I picked him up I didn’t have my ‘reading glasses’ with me so when I got his birth certificate I could not see his date of birth.
When I got home with my new bundle of joy I looked at it – Bennie was born as Skipper was going to puppy heaven. Now THAT was meant to be.
Today is my BABY Sister’s 50th Birthday.
Now you never mind how old that makes me !!!!
I’d like to post an embarrassing picture of her but there is none !! Although I’m sure our Cousin Cindy may have one or two as I heard they ‘hit the town’ quite a bit when they were teenagers (I was already living in Vancouver). Here’s a pic of her taken July, 1964 (those were the days when the month and year was printed on the picture otherwise I’d never know. Debbie is on the left and on the right is another Sister, Wanda….her 50th was AGES ago !! LOL
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO BENNIE AND DEBBIE !!
GOLDFIELD GHOST TOWN
I had been there once before with Bob while we were riding one day. But I liked it so much I wanted to go back. Plus I also wanted to see the ‘gun fight’. We missed that as we were somewhere else on the property eating ice cream ! But unfortunately there was no gun fight that day. Bennie and I packed a lunch and went off for the day. We strolled around and thoroughly enjoyed ourselves. Here are some pics and if you want to see all the pics I took that day you can click here:https://picasaweb.google.com/104464288903377269880/Feb222011?authkey=Gv1sRgCKKXxsjiwJ_kuQE#
BENNIE’S NEW GIRLFRIEND
Yes, I know – he has a different one in every port !! My neighbour, Chuck, has this wire fencing which is really great for the dogs. He has Sam and Sarah.
And Sarah really likes Bennie…..
And it certainly would appear that Bennie REALLY likes Sarah……
At some point last week (I think) I checked another HD off my list. Stopped by the one in Mesa and bought the obligatory T-Shirt and two more stickers for the little pup….
I love this one….see the little dog on the tank ??
Staying on the bike theme, here’s two biker chicks !! I’m the one on the left with the saggy arse !!
And still more on the bike theme, I spent today cleaning the bike. Yup, Took off the saddle bags and windshield to give it a really good cleaning. It’s hard to get anything done around here because there’s always people walking by and stopping to chat !!
Men just don't know how to 'wiggle' I guess. LOL
What a day !! I spent the whole morning on the telephone regarding my generator problem. I first called the 800 # listed in the Owner’s Manual for Onan Generators (thanks for that tip Jim). While waiting for someone there to call me back I called East Valley RV Specialists and spoke with the Service Manager. I wanted them to send out their mobile service technician so that I didn’t have to unhook and bring my rig in there.
Now he tried to be helpful (I suppose) but really all I got were excuses and justifying about what they did and justifying the outrageous labour amount they charged me. And in all the years they have been in business they’ve never had a complaint…blah blah blah He kept going through the bill regarding the other things they did and I kept saying I would deal with him on those matters seperately as I wanted to just get the generator situation dealt with now. I also told him it wasn’t just the generator – it was also the fact that they left my bathroom area all smudged with black marks; they drained my fresh water tank etc. etc. etc. Oh, And this is how they left the cap for my holding tank drain pipe:
He told me the problem with the generator had nothing to do with the ‘service’ they did on it and it had to be something electrical – likely the voltage regulator etc. etc. While I was speaking to him (via Skype) my cell phone rang and it was the Onan guy so I took that call.
This guy (Migel) was AMAZING. He must have spent an hour on the phone with me having me do various tests. BTW, he told me my generator does not even have a voltage regulator !! He eliminated numerous things that could be the problem and narrowed it down to the possibility of a bad control board (part costing almost $400 to say nothing of what the labour would cost) or a wire touching a ground sending a signal to turn off the generator. Either problem would not require the generator having to come out completely. – which East Valley said would have to be done in order to diagnose the problem. Migel asked if I would call him back to let him know the end result which I assured him I would do.
Several other calls later to various places Migel suggested to get this work done – I have pages of notes ! So I give up on it for awhile and go outside with Bennie. There were several people out and about and one woman (Lisa) out with her two ‘small horses’. LOL VERY large dogs. Turns out she is a mechanic (or something like that ) in the military; has the identical generator; and she does all her own service work. She asked if I minded if she had a look at mine ? DUHHHHH
She asked about the spark plug. Migel had mentioned that also and I said they must not have replaced the spark plug because it wasn’t noted anywhere on the bill. A wiggle later and VABOOOM my generator is working !!! We let it run for at least 1/2 hour – with the electricity unplugged and the air conditioner turned on. Not a problem. I figure that just saved me about $1,000 !!! Because you know if Onan charges almost $400 for the part – this RV place would definitely charge more – and then the labour at $115.00 an hour.
It gets better !!! Throughout the day we spoke several more times and turns out they live in Sacramento (I’ll be travelling through there to get to B.C.). On the paper where they wrote down their address etc. they wrote “you are welcome anytime”. AND they have RV parking on their property !!! AND they told me about several places along the Coast where there are great places for me to park for awhile. AND besides all of that, they are a really nice couple. Actually for those of you who met my old neighbour in Toronto (Margriet), Lisa could be Margriet’s younger sister she looks so much like her.
Later in the day Migel called ME back to follow up on what happened !! Now that’s good Customer Service !! Oh, I never did hear back from East Valley !!I sure am one Happy (and relieved) Camper tonight.
And here I was believing that Arizona didn’t know what a cloud in the sky was !! It’s been so gorgeous everyday with bright sunny skies and deliciously warm to hot temperatures. Loving it !!
This is the SECOND day in a row for this weather – EEEEK – can’t be havin’ that.
We are sooooo spoiled – there’s people shovlin’ snow ya know !! hehehe
I’ve been taking advantage of this time by trying to clean up some crap on my computer. I have a gazillion things saved to “My Favourites”. Every time I see a link on a Blog or Website I’m reading that might interest me, I save it to have a closer look at later. Also, I started to do some more work on getting the pictures off my computer onto Picasa Web. That is very time consuming and I’m uploading 1977 – 1980 today, so you see I have a long ways to go.
Doing this is a real trip down memory lane. I try to keep focused on just uploading the pics, but every now and again I see an Album that I want to go through. This was my very first bike !!!! (I think I’ve posted this before ??)
OK, Back to uploading my pics. Sorry no sunset pics to post.
The decision to ‘stay’ or ‘go’ has been made for me. And to say I really don’t like ‘others’ making decisions for me would be an understatement ! Well, unless I ask them to of course. I took my RV to East Valley RV Specialists on East Apache Trail, Apache Junction, AZ. I was not happy when I left.
Why, you might ask ? Well I’ll tell you…..
1. I had made an appointment well in advance and was told to have my RV there by 9:00AM. I decided to go there the previous afternoon (not being a morning person and all…) so it would be available first thing. They didn’t even come to get the RV until 11:00AM.
2. There wasn’t anything ‘wrong’ with my RV, I had just decided to get some preventative maintenance done. ie. the generator serviced; asked them to check the furnace; hot water tank etc. The holding tanks levers didn’t appear to be closed tight and there was a slight drip that I wanted stopped. I also wanted to know the cost of putting in a thingamajig that hooked directly into the coach batteries that I could plug my inverter into so that I could run my computer off the coach batteries. Bennie and I went for a little toodle on the bike and the Service guy said he would call me.
3. It’s now 3:00PM and no call ?? I call them. John (the guy I was dealing with) said the generator was done and they were working on the holding tank levers. Asked about the cost of the thingamajig – he didn’t have an answer. Asked how much longer before the RV would be ready – he didn’t have an answer.
4. I decide to head back to see what ‘da f*ck they are doing ! I’m about 45 minutes away – via the cow path I took back. See my rig – nope, not a soul around even looking at it. I’m tired by now and a ‘smidge’ PISSED !! I load the bike back into the trailer (this takes awhile) and about 1/2 hour later I see John and the technician (and I use that word very loosely !) looking at my rig. I go over there and see that’s it’s only now (it has to be after 4:00PM by now) that they are looking at ways to install the thingamajig. John does not appear to want to do this job ?? When I push a little further he further discourages me by saying it would be at least an hour’s labour (at $115 per hour). Now being a ‘smidge’ PISSED I say wrap it up – give me the bill. I didn’t even look at the bill – just gave him my credit card. I mean after all, how much could it be ?? I left there feeling ‘ripped off’. And I didn’t even know the extent of it at that time.
5. I head for the first Walmart – that don’t allow overnight parking – so head to the next Walmart and park for the night. This is where it becomes ‘interesting’. I constantly check the levels on my little control panel thingie. I see that my fresh water tank is just about empty….it had previously been almost full. They used my fresh water to ‘test’ that the dripping had stopped from the holding tank levers. John knows I’m boondocking ! Then I make some toast for a sandwich – which requires turning on the generator – it starts fine and cuts out in less than a minute. Tried it several times, same thing. WTF did they do to my generator !!
6. I go to the bathroom and there’s BLACK marks all around the toilet from where (obviously) they had been flushing it testing that there was no further dripping.
7. I look at the bill and it’s over $300.00 !! For what ?? I tried the generator several more times the next morning and same thing – starts up fine but cuts out in less than a minute. I go back to this place – a ‘smidge’ PISSED and tell John I need someone to look at this right away; and to fill my fresh water tank; and to kindly give me the name and e-mail address of the Owner.
He does get someone to look at the generator who cannot determine the problem – and was too busy to examine it further today – and who said the generator will have to come completely out to determine the problem – and I have to bring the rig back there on Monday.
Now perhaps whatever has gone wrong with the generator was going to happen anyway ??? But that’s just too much of a coincidence for me. I’ve had this RV for two years now and have used the generator numerous times since I got on the road in November and never had any trouble with it.
It would be safe to say that I will never go back to this place again. This is Southern Arizona – where there are hundreds of thousands of RV’ers this time of year – and countless RV Service places to go to.
Now I have to go find a place with hookups. I recalled seeing a place while out on the bike yesterday – Southern Palms RV Park. Sounds fancy doesn’t it. I call them and yes they have a spot and the weekly price is really cheap ! (That should have been my first clue – but hey I’m not thinking clearly. LOL) I head there and as I’m getting closer to the neighbourhood I’m not getting a good feeling. Yesterday, on the bike, I really wasn’t paying much attention to the surroundings. I pull into this place and knew instantly I would not be staying there. Back on the road, several more stops at different RV Parks, four hours later I finally pull into where I am now.NO, It’s not the Ritz for sure – and it’s certainly not the Usery Mountain Park. I’ll take pics of my ‘view’ later. But the price is great; the people seem very friendly; the Manager made sure she got someone to help me with the trailer; and it’s going to be ‘home’ for the next week.
This is the most undecided I’ve been since I started my travelling. One minute I decide I’m going to head to Tombstone, Arizona to check that out. Another time I decide to go to Lake Havasu City. Paul and I rode there and it’s beautiful so could definitely hang around there for a week.
Then another time I think I should book a spot and settle in here for another few weeks. I really like the Mesa/Apache Junction area and there’s tons more to see PLUS tons more riding areas to explore. And the weather has been fantastic. Mid to high 70’s every day. Can’t ask for better.
Since leaving Usery Mountain Park, I spent two nights dry camping at a Regional Recreation place at $6.00 a night. There are quite a few of these kinds of place around here. Basically it’s just a parking lot; no hookups; might have some picnic tables etc. But it really is quite nice at these places because there is a Camp Host (or two) on site all the time plus other RV’ers so I certainly felt very safe. And it’s very quiet as they are not close to any major highways.
Then I spent a night in the parking lot of where I brought my RV in for some servicing. Won’t talk about that because I was not happy with their service and the cost for the little they did. Plus I was there the entire day !!Last night I was a Guest of Wally’s, where I am right now. I still have two nights passes for any of the dry camping places within the Tonto National Forest so I’ll definitely go back there today. It’s a strange feeling. I have a ‘pull’ to get back on the road and yet at the same time I have a ‘pull’ to settle in somewhere for a few weeks. What to do ? What to do ?
I needed to get Bennie bathed today as I’m heading out of here tomorrow and will be boondocking for awhile. ie. NO HOOKUPS
I did the ‘other dog’ first ‘cause he was easy to do. Gosh, I’ve had that little guy for umpteen years ! I believe my good friend Irene gave him to me but I really can’t remember for sure. Or perhaps my Sister. There are some things you just can’t part with !!
First thing to do is get everything ready. Bennie is checking out the towels on the floor…
I’ll try to be good Mom, but I’m not gonna like it !!
Getting him hosed down……
All soaped up and rinsing off…….
Bennie thinks the drying part is play time…..
Now that ordeal is over – definitely play time and happy dance…..
I think I’ll do another happy dance for you Mom ‘cause you seem to enjoy it sooooo much !!
Back outside to get dirty again….
After that I decided to go to Walmart as I needed to stock up before I head to my boondocking spot. Was going to do it tomorrow in the RV but hey, it was a gorgeous day and it was a good excuse for a little ride. Didn’t take Bennie as I knew I would need his kennel to put the stuff in.
Oh dear – did I buy too much stuff – and WHERE is it all going to go ?? The saddlebags may look big, but really they don’t store a lot of stuff.
Almost there – but both saddlebags and Bennie’s kennel are now FULL. Sure glad I didn’t buy that third quart of milk !! And do I REALLY need those tea bags ????
I then enjoyed a leisurely ride home.
Here’s a little video clip of my campsite.
G’Night Folks !
How many people does it take to install a laundry rack on the back of my RV ? ONE – and it wasn’t me !!
How many people does it take to put together a ‘home-made’ flag pole ? FOUR – and that would be TWO adults; ONE teenager and ONE four-legged child.
I bought this laundry rack ‘awhile’ ago – it was one of those things I saw on the back of someone’s rig while in an RV Park and had to have it immediately ! LOL It was only a week or so ago that I finally got to opening it to discover there was NO hardware in the box. The box had been previously opened so I guess it fell out.
While going through my records to find the receipt I discovered I had bought it December 15th, 2010 ! Well that’s ‘awhile’ ago isn’t it !! LOL
Here is the link to the pics posted today:https://picasaweb.google.com/104464288903377269880/2011February12th?authkey=Gv1sRgCLKA166Rh8ySEQ#
I finally got to CW to get the hardware and yesterday decided I was going to put it together.
By following the directions precisely I got the bracket thingie on the rack – simple enough !
But now to get it on to the ladder on the back of the rig ----- Wasn’t going to happen. I fooled around with it for almost an hour – leaving it and coming back – because I knew there was something very simple that I was missing. No way could I figure out how it attached to the ladder. Near gave it ‘da flick into the desert !
Left it alone and decided to have a nap. A little while later I hear this ‘hello – hello’. It was Donna (from HD Forums) and her Daughter CJ. YES, SHE TRACKED ME DOWN AGAIN !! LOL She came by in her car to see if I had errands to run. And of course I did. Wanted to go to Home Depot (or equivalent) to get PVC piping for my flag pole.
While she was waiting for me to get ready she took a look at my laundry rack and WITHIN MINUTES had it attached to my ladder. What was I doing wrong you might ask ?? Following the directions, I would answer !!
Went to Lowe’s where hubby Joe joined us and we got the stuff needed. While at Lowe’s I took these pics. The State of Arizona CLEARLY doesn’t realize it’s FEBRUARY – the dead of WINTER - for cripes sake !!
A few more errands checked off my list and back home where Donna proceeded to put my flag pole together. You will notice how CJ (teenager) and Bennie (dog) are doing a fabulous job of ‘supervising’ ! I wasn’t TOTALLY useless – my job was to drill the holes in the PVC and take the pics.
Several people had mentioned to me that a “must” while in this area is a ride to Tortilla Flat. Well they were sure right !!http://www.tortillaflataz.com/
Even if you don’t ride a motorcycle it is a MUST as the ride there is stunningly beautiful in its scenery. And it sure doesn’t disappoint when you arrive there.
Going there by motorcycle was awesome in that the roads had fabulous curves – well some complete 90 degree blind curves that sure kept my senses on high alert. You don’t get to see much of the scenery (well I didn’t anyways) riding there because you really have to be focused on the road.
Bob (my Tour Guide), Lawrence (friend of Bob’s) and I went on the ride. BTW PAUL – you’ve been replaced as my Tour Guide – well until we meet up again. PFFFT – Heading to Florida when it’s so gorgeous here !! LOL
Now neither Bob nor Lawrence ride Harleys but I tried not to hold that against them……
I now have the pics on Picasa so follow this link to see all of them. Viewing them in SLIDESHOW is the best. You’ll see that on the left side of the screen just above the pictures.https://picasaweb.google.com/104464288903377269880/2011February11th?authkey=Gv1sRgCOysrr6etZacKw#
Here’s a few to wet yer whistle:
We stopped at Canyon Lake on the way. What a view !! Here’s Bob taking care of Bennie while I took some pics:
The Bar where we had lunch (THANKS again Bob !) had every inch of the walls and ceilings covered in MONEY !! All American $1.00 bills but I even saw one Canadian $5.00 bill. Apparently there is an estimate of $100,000 on the walls and ceilings !!
On the way back we stopped at Goldfield Ghost Town. Another very unique experience. I could have spent hours there.
And I met me a real live COWBOY ! Oh, me Mudder would be so proud ! LOLAnother great day in Retirement Land. Don’t forget, if you want to see the rest of the pics, follow the Picasa link above – that’s if I did it right ??