We are westward bound to the west coast where we will spend five weeks just thirty minutes from our youngest son and his family. His family includes his beautiful wife and two of the cutest and sweetest girls around – at least in my eyes. I’ve been telling everyone that I was going to find out what it is really like being a grandparent, well, a grandparent who gets to see their grandchildren regularly. Not only that, we will get to explore the San Francisco Bay Area!
We are allowing eleven days to our final destination, Half Moon Bay. That way John won’t have to drive extremely long days and we can even spend two nights at a couple of spots. One thing about RVing that all RVers know, you may hit bumps in the road………that is in your well laid plans.
It was a good start, traveling smoothly down the road, until we hit Memphis, TN. John hates driving through Memphis. There is not a great southern loop around the city and the roads are rough to say the least. We made it to I 40 in West Memphis when a trucker was honking at us and his passenger was waving wildly at us. At first we both wondered why he was honking at us. We certainly couldn’t tell anything was wrong, but we knew something had to be up, so pull over on the shoulder we did. John gets out to check things out and then returns with the words, “It’s bad.” We had lost a wheel off our tow dolly and the dolly was dragging along the road. Amazing that we didn’t even feel anything. Even more amazing that it didn’t cause us to wreck or damage the car.
We don’t know how long we had been traveling that way, but surely not far. John unloaded the car and went in search of lug nuts so he could put the spare on. Luckily, he did not have to go far to get to an auto parts shop. He even backtracked to see if he could locate the missing wheel with no luck. With the spare on, we decided to camp in West Memphis in order to buy a new rim and tire. We didn’t trust that spare for the distance we were going. Oh, and all this happened with a light rain falling of course.
Now for the lucky part of the story, and we are very thankful that we had some luck too. When we arrived at the campground, the bottom fell out of the sky. Thank God it waited ’til we were off the road.
I explained our predicament while I was checking in and they gave me a business card of a tire shop very close by. After the rain let up, John went to the shop and they said they could have a new rim and tire ready by 9:00 the next morning. As luck had it, it was ready by 8:00 and we got back on the road by 10:00. I’m so thankful we didn’t have to wait two or more days.
Bump number two happened in Oklahoma. Rolling down I 40 and a beep beep starts sounding. Now we are losing air pressure. We just happened to be at an exit with a Loves, plus a mechanic. If it had happened a little sooner, we would had lost all our air and the brakes would lock up, leaving us on the shoulder of the road again. We just did make it to the parking lot.
John found a hose where a hole had rubbed in it. Between him and the mechanic, they removed it, but of course they didn’t have a replacement part. The mechanic located a part for it, but it required John driving a good ways to get it. When he returned, the mechanic was busy and John replaced it himself. The mechanic did not charge us, so it was a rather inexpensive fixed, but we lost a lot of time. We are still on schedule though, but we did lose one of our two night stay to do something fun.
Then we hit scenic New Mexico along with it’s long grades of hills. Now our RV does not have a big engine allowing us to go uphill at a fast rate, but the slowness we were going was bordering on ridiculousness. I kept thinking we didn’t have this kind of trouble for these size of hills before and was wondering how the heck we would ever cross the mountains in California.
We stopped for lunch and John brought up the subject. He had been wondering the same thing. Something was definitely wrong and the only thing he came up with was a dirty fuel filter. He had a new one with us, so he changed it at a truck stop. What a difference it made! It was just a short hang up and we were once again rolling smoothly along.
Now we are in Bakersville, CA, just one day from our final designation, and a day early! Tomorrow, I get to see my son, Kevin, his wife, Susie, and their two daughters, Eliza and Hazel! Yea, yea, yea!