Friday, September 26, 2008


I do enjoy visiting Tx. What I said yesterday was said in jest as we were on a mission to get home. Did not mean that there is nothing in Tx. to see.
In years gone by I used to visit Tx once a year. We would travel to Weatherford for a few days each June or July. While not the best time of year to be there it was lots of fun. One year I think my son and I hit every pawn shop in Dallas and Ft. Worth. We found ourselves in some, "shady" places, at times however we sure had fun. Many of my boots were purchased in that area. Being a ham radio operator we worked our trips to coincide with a big radio convention there in Arlington. Had a blast there. I want to stop in Weatherford and spend a day or two. It looks to me that it has doubled in size in the last 20 years. That is a neat town.
We bought our motorhome in Pflugerville, Tx 4 years ago this month. Funny that most of my fondest memories of Tx. have been in the heat. We need to get down there during the winter months sometime and really enjoy the place. San Antonio is another place that I like to visit. Once I said that I would never go back there. That was when I was in the Air Force, during basic training. Certainly I did not enjoy that stay a lot, but it was not bad. What hit me the most was the heat as I was there during July and August.
Here are a few pictures from our trip through on I-10 and I-20. By the time we hit I-30 I was on a mission to hit that Arkansas line and relieved to be out of the Dallas 5 o'clock traffic pulling a bug. No pictures there.

Lots of this going on. Too bad that we all don't own at least one of these. Just 2 or 3 barrels a day would sustain my living costs. We saw lots of new ones being drilled.

Something that we did not take pictures of were the new wind turbines. There used to be a lonely string of them just west of Abilene. Now, they are going up everywhere. I bet one of the groups had over 500 in one big patch. They stretched as far as we could see north and east of the interstate. I think this is great. If I lived in this area I would have one for my home along with all the solar panels that I could afford to stick up on the roof.

Well, here are a couple of reasons that we were in a hurry to get home. Had been gone for 3 months and these 2 have really grown. Its amazing how fast our kids develop. From "grunting" to actual words in a short period of time. From shyness to outgoing, almost over night.
So, lots of good things in Texas. I enjoy watching a TV show on the RFD channel. They have a reporter that travels the back country gathering interesting stories of the state. Have seen lots of places through his eyes that I hope to experience in person one of these days. A couple of years ago there was a reality show that took place in Vega, Tx. Teri and I watched it a lot. We stopped one day there and visited with some of the same folks that were on the show. Really neat. One day, I plan for us to take the motorhome to Tx. and see lots of neat things that the state has to offer. So many little out of the way places. I would like to be a "Charles Kurwalt" and just step out of the GMC and start interviewing folks about their favorite things in the small back rural areas of this big state. You do know that Charles used a GMC in his show, right?
I am told that I write too much and use too few pictures. With that said, I close for the day.
Thanks for traveling along with us. I will keep yall posted on the goings on around here until we hit the road again. I usually find myself in some real predicuments, will try to carry my camera along.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

We Made It !!!!!

23 hours and 1400 miles, towing a Vdub behind a Pontiac Vibe, and we are here. We had a great trip. I have some pictures but who wants to see Tx? I mean, we entered the state in the dark and we left in the dark, 800 miles later. Dallas is always a nightmare. We seem to hit it at 5 pm everytime. This time was no different. You should have seen those folks looking at us. I guess they would not have thought a little car could do what we did. No problem keeping up or passing when we needed. I tried to stay 5 under the speed limit but in West Texas the speed limit is 80 mph. Oh yea, we hit it just a couple times but for the most part we drove 67 mph. From 2 am on, cops were everywhere. I could not believe it. I had no problem keeping within the posted speed, especially after seeing them out at that time.
We left our daughter's at 4 am Mo. time, 2 am Az. time. 23 hours later we passed our last two cops here in Dexter as they sat talking. No doubt they were trying to keep each other awake.
I think I hit the sack about 5 or so, am. Slept til 230 pm. Unhooked the cars, found a dead battery on my Jeep. I loaned the Jeep out and someone did not make sure the charger was plugged in when they brought it back, so, it sat for 6 weeks with no sensor on the battery. Oh well, at least my scooter battery stayed up and it fired off, bad gas and all, I could smell it. Got some stuff for it when I put it up this year to keep that from happening.
It is hard to walk, or ride, right out of one life and into another. That is what it feels like. I hated leaving our girl and family. She has three of our grandkids and we really love them. She is married to a great guy so it is just hard to leave them. We get here and we are right back to being grandparents. Our little Tyler was right here. We have him and his mom here now. We have three more here in town that we will see soon. How fortunate I feel to have such a great family. 3 months is a long time so we got to get caught up on all of the fishing and John Wayne stuff.
Hey, who watches Pinks, on the Speed Channel? My favorite show, and Teri enjoys it too. The guy that runs the show is Rich. He does an excellent job and is from Iowa. Well, my buddy, and fellow GMC owner, Wally, had a story for me. Seems he met Rich's dad or uncle, and spent the night in his driveway last week. Larry, saw Wally and Sue and visited with them as he too owns a GMC coach. Told them on their return trip to park in his driveway to save a night's rv park fee. They did and helped him with some things on his GMC. Seems he is in the middle of re doing his coach. Larry has been an owner for 20 years. I know he is a nice guy because he has a GMC motorhome. Anyway, I told Wally maybe he can get us some "VIP" tickets to a filming and we can drag race each other in the two coaches, but not for titles. I just don't need another GMC coach. For those who do not watch Pinks, it is a drag racing show for pink slips. 6 pm daily on Speed Channel and Thursday evenings at 8 pm for an hour show. Try it, you will enjoy it if you like cars and owners. A great show for gearheads.
Well, need to go. Pinks is on tv right now. Just wanted to let everyone know that we made it. If you are an rver and passing through Dexter, Mo. during this Fall, call me and I will give you free parking and electric in my driveway.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Hitting The Road

We are almost ready to roll. There was no ten minute rules today. It is hot here. I am praying for cooler weather across Tx. We will see. Will leave the a/c off until we have to turn it on as we have a load, as you can see. The Vibe is loaded and we have the vdub behind. I would not let Teri put stuff in the bug. Don't want any added weight there if I can help it. I took a test drive with the bug behind the Vibe. I think all is good. All lights work so we should be good to roll before daylight.
Here is the last shot we will see of our "home away from home" until we get back in late Dec. or early Jan. I sure hate leaving it but it is the best way for us with prices on fuel what they are. We slept our last night in it last night. I drained everything out and topped the batteries off. Teri has got everything inside ready. I may pull the window screens off tonight when it cools down. I am moving the coach out of the way. The solar should keep the batteries charged so will not leave it hooked to electric. Our kids will take good care of it while we are gone. I am hoping that it cools down here pretty soon. Without air running it is very hot in here. Will leave the Fantastic vents cracked a little to let hot air out but not enough to let rain in. There are three vents so I think all will be fine. Sleeping in the house tonite. Or, I should say, laying down. I can never sleep the night before we leave. I will let Teri sleep while it is dark and hopefully somewhere in Tx. I can let her drive for a while so I can rest. We have almost 1400 miles to go. When we hit Texarkana I feel like we are nearly home.
So folks, thanks for hanging in there with us. Maybe I can post some stuff on the road as we will have internet with us. Keep us in your prayers for a safe and uneventful trip.
Until later,

Monday, September 22, 2008

My Ten Minute Rule

I have this "thing" about chores. If I can convince myself that I can do it in ten minutes then I am off and away. Sometimes it might take me 5 or 6 days to convince myself that I can do it in ten minutes, but hey, that's ok. What else have I got to do, right?
Well, I had three "ten minute" chores for this morning. Look at the first one here, picture. If you look at the left side of the coach you will see no bugs. The right side, facing the coach, is still covered with Nevada bugs that are really baked on. Been putting this one off all week. All the while, they are cooking away. Not a problem. Let me share with you a little tip to make this a "ten minute" chore, no matter how big the front of your vehicle is or how many bugs are cooked onto the front of it.

See, ten minutes and the bugs are gone, did you time me? 5 minutes per side.
Here is the deal, works every time. I have a garage full of bug cleaners that I have bought. None of them work, none. Now, sneak into your wife's laundry room, grab two dryer sheets, those fabric softner things. They are little square sheets. Get some warm water, cold will work. Dip the fabric sheet into the water and then rub the bugs off with it. Make sure that you have some clean water to rinse as the sheets leave a soapy substance on the vehicle. Bugs wipe right off. How do you like that? See, an old retired parole officer has a few tricks up his sleeve. This works great on motorcycle windshields. In fact, a motorcycle friend is the one who told me about this. I did not believe him. I was afraid it would scratch my paint. So, I practiced on Teri's old Geo with years of Az. bugs on it. Worked just like I was told. So then I cleaned up my truck and have been doing it ever since. Now, none of my friends have any excuse to come see me with a "buggy" frontend, unless you are expecting me to demonstrate, and, I will. Pass this along once you convince yourself that it will work. It is a good tip for car guys and scooter boys.

Ok, here was my second "ten minute" chore. I pulled the rear seat back out of the bug. The seat bottom was already gone. I do not plan to have a rear seat but carpeted storage instead. So, I eliminated 25 lbs of weight. Now I can put my guitar in the car and not add any weight. Not leaving my good guitar here this time like I did back in the Spring. My old one at home is just not the same. I can take it home and the car is still lighter than it was before I put it in there. Remember we are towing the bug to Mo. with the Vibe, 1350 miles. 800 of it through Tx. No climbs to make so we should be fine. New tires on both vehicles.

Ok, number 3. What is this? Well, it is my monitor for the ten tire sensors. We have 6 wheels on the coach and 4 on the car. This thing keeps an eye on the tire pressures. If one drops the light flashes and an alarm goes off, telling me which tire is going flat. I bought this before I retired. Was a costly thing, 700 bux. It is good insurance for me though. If a tire drops pressure I will know it before damage is caused. There is no way one can look at a radial tire and know it is low. I hate checking each tire everytime we stop for gas. Also, if a tire goes low or blows out I will not feel it if it is on the car behind the motorhome. Well, I had one light and alarm not working on the monitor head. Company told me to send in the sender, 3 year warranty. Got it back, still does not work. So, now I have to send the head in. Well, since we are leaving the coach here now is a good time to send it in for repair. I am less than happy about this but at least it is still under warranty. I made my mind up to purchase this particular unit because it allows me to change my own batteries with "10 for a buck" from Dollar Tree. The other two major units require you to send in the senders and they charge you 20 bux per unit. 10, uh, that is 200 bux. Was not a hard decision for me when I learned this about the various systems. There are some things I hate about this company, and their product, but still seems to be the best unit for the money.
So, there you have my 3 ten minute chores for today. Cleaned off the bugs, took out the back seat, and removed the head of the tire monitoring system from the dash. 30 minutes total and I have the rest of the day to myself, and Teri. I try to look busy everytime she comes around though. Working pretty good so far. Its only 2 pm, I might get caught yet.
Oh, the kids are taking us out for supper tonight. Saved us a trip over the mountain to Walmart. Can do it with them tonight.
Well, back to looking busy.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Last Day

Oh yea, my favorite day of the Greenlee County Fair was today, close up. Oh, not really but it was pay day and we only worked a couple of hours today, maybe 3. Teri and I gave exhibits back. We worked for a real nice lady, the fair cordinator, Karla. Our daughter got us the jobs and we tried to give them a full day's work for our pay. We might want to do this again. Who knows, we might get promoted, ha. I love having no responsibility. Just working for an hourly rate or a set fee. Worked out great and I am glad we did it. Made Teri's birthday present from me easy to pick out this year, just signed my check over to her and told her happy birthday. Ain't I just the nicest guy?

Friday night our grandkids ran the barrells and grabbed the flag on their horses. I took pics but they did not turn out, just a blur. Yesterday afternoon they sold off their award winning pigs and made a lot of money. They went for good prices this year. We are glad that there are "folks of means" that support the livestock affairs and pay top dollar at the auction. Makes it all worth the work that the kids put into their livestock. I am proud to have grandkids that understand what responsibility is.
I had to include the picture of the "ride". I love vehicles, as everyone knows. I think this is cool that out here these rigs can be licensed for the roads. They get poor gas mileage but I like looking at the ones that have been "hotrodded" for the road. This one was from New Mexico, which is in eyesight of us here.
Today I heard a news report that the electric vehicles ar too quiet for the US to make them legal. They are adding noise makers to them. Give me a break. I do not have to worry about that with any vehicle I own, especially the Vdub. It sounds like it has straight pipes because it pretty much does. I clutch it when I meet a cop.
Teri and I got to see some of our favorite friends this morning at worship services. Great friends and we look forward to being here and being a part of the Church here when we come back this winter. The singing was good. I love the singing. Mike did a good job with his sermon this morning. I could say that I was surprised, just to mess with him, but I was not. He does a great job here and is very dedicated. See, I know he reads my blog, ha.
Well, we will be working around the coach for next couple of days getting it ready to "stay" this time. I hate leaving it but finances make it an easier decision. This way it will already be here at my daughter's when we come back for the winter. I know that she will take good care of it for us.
Thanks for working the fair with us. Made it easier knowing that you were also sweating, ha.
See you in a day or so.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Friday at the Fair

Early this morning we arrived at the pig barn to watch our kids show their hogs. What a show. Both came home with winners.
Kelsey got the alternate best of show after winning a first and a second. She had 2 pigs.

Look at her show that hog.

Josh was quite the showman. He stared that judge down every time he got the chance. He got a second place. Let me tell you that there were a bunch of proud kids showing those pigs. Both kids were up against 10 or 12 others so they did a real good job.

It is so good to see youngsters taking responsibility for rasing these animals. What a thrill for me to be here and to wintess this event. Today culminates a long effort. Congratulations Kelsey and Josh.

Oh yea, there will be horse racing here. Tonight all three of our grankids will be riding in the horse show. It is going to be some event. I can't wait for that.
I thought sure someone would want to buy my supper after all of my afternoon effort went into judging the pets. I did not even get an offer for a coke. Teri and I spent some time judging the pets and their handlers this afternoon. I am not sure I will volunteer for that again, maybe, if they raise the pay. That was a task. I see why they got out of towners. What a show. One catagory had 12 entries. That was a tough one for us. I am thinking about wearing a disguise tonite to the fair.
It got a bit warm this afternoon but not bad. Sam got to stay inside the coach with the air today. Yesterday she was out under a shade tree all day. I was afraid it might be a bit warmer today so I left her inside.
Ok, its almost 4 pm here. Think I will rest up before heading back to the fair. We got tagged to work this morning but that did not develop. I think our Saturday has been eliminated too. Hmmm, maybe they don't like my work. I am sure they have others that need to work so I am not against sharing.
Have a great weekend. I know back east my friends have already started, being 2 or 3 hours faster than we are here. I will see you later.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Greenlee Arizona County Fair

Oh boy, did we earn our pay today? We started at 830 am. I quit at 730 pm. Teri is still over there and it is 9 pm. Long day but fun. My first day to work for pay in a long time. We should earn a little money for our travels this weekend. We work 3 more days. None will be this long, I hope. Saturday will be the hardest.

Here is my favorite lady early this morning. She is a very hard worker.

My oldest granddaughter, Kelsey, helping her other grandpa, Ed, judge the jams. That was a good job. I went over to the lady judges of the cakes and cookies begging. They let me feed on the leftovers that they had already tasted. I am pretty good at begging. This was the last picture I got as my camera lost its battery power. That is why it is darker. I only got a few pictures. If we have more batteries I will get more Friday.

This was my area. We took in the exhibits today. Then we helped the judes do their thing.

Linda was my partner today. We had a good time working together. She was very pleasant to be around. I hope she felt the same way about me. I know I was the only one working that did not have an accent. These folks out here talk different than we do back in the south part of Mo.
It was fun and I even get paid. Tomorrow Teri and I are the sole judes of the pet show. I was hoping for a 3rd judge. I think they chose us because we will be leaving here soon and maybe wont get whipped by angry parents of the kids who show their pets, I don't know. I will let you know if we survive. Do me a favor and pray for cool weather Saturday. I think we will be outside all day. I hate to sweat. Did enough of that when I was a kid growing up on the cotton farm of my dad's.
That is about it for tonight folks. I am pooped.
Oh how I love living and traveling in this GMC motorhome. It lets us do and see so many great things in this wonderful country.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Automatic Fire Extinguishers In Motorhomes

This post is for motorhome owners.
Fire is the major cause of motorhome loss. I am scared of fire, have been since I was nearly burned up with gasoline, at 9 years old. Two friends chased me down and put me out. There is no chasing down a burning motorhome and putting out the fire. That is why we need to be prepared.
Most coach fires are from gasoline, hot transmission fluid, and lp gas. I can see a fire that might start in my engine box because I have a glass cover. Most do not and can not see in there while going down the road. A fire could burn for a good amount of time without the driver knowing it. Automatic Halon fire extinguishers. They are temperature sensitive and go off at 286 degrees. We have the Fire Fight Halon extinguishers. Here is a pictorial of the installation in the engine box, refrigerator box, and the generator compartment. The electrical compartment is another good place to install one of the small units.
The first picture is how I figured out where to mount and drill the holes. I fitted it inside the engine box, by hand, then I held it on the other side of the step, with the mounts on, and drilled my 4 holes. Some coaches will have something in the way on this side so try the other side before you start rearranging things in the engine box.

The second picture is how the inside looks after mounting. If you have carpet you can cut a slit where you drilled the holes and force the heads of the bolts through so they don't show. I was not too concerned with that as we have a storage box that goes right in front of the bolt heads.

Here is the engine unit installed. Total time was 10 minutes. I did not have to rearrange anything in the engine box.
This is the unit that we installed in the refrigerator box. I held the unit where I wanted it, took it out of the mount, and drilled my 2 holes.

Here it is mounted. Total time, 5 minutes.

This is the generator compartment, easy install. The ss-25 mounts right on the face of the genny. I placed a piece of wood behind the face so I would not drill through anything I should not.

I loosened the brackets and held the unit where I wanted it mounted. With the bottom bolts out, I slipped the loose bracket over the face of the Onan, marked my holes. Make sure it is not going to hit the coach brace when you slide the Onan back in. Only drill the lower holes. None needed for the top as the bracket slips over the top of the metal and then tightened.

The ss-25 installed.It clears the frame of the coach. Without hand fitting it I would have been hitting that brace, or 2 rivets that come through the brace from the top. It needs to mount as low as possible to the crease in the face of the Onan. The braces slide so the holes in the Onan can be wherever you need them. With good drill bits you can also do this in 10 minutes.
As I sated in the beginning of this post, this is for motorhome owners. These units are mounted in our GMC coach. This gives me a sense of security going down the road. I run my generator while moving sometimes to use the roof air so I wanted this here. If you don't maybe you are not concerned about a generator fire.
We sell these units. if you have any questions just email me and put Fire in the title of your note.
The engine unit is 225.00.
The refer unit is 125.00.
The genny unit is 95.00.
If you have bought these and not installed them yet, you have no excuse now. This is as simple as it gets, pictures. Dan
gregg_dan at

Monday, September 15, 2008


Check ou tthat grasshopper. I had to put that in. They are everywhere here in Duncan, Az. Several colors on them and they are big enuff to fry up.

Well, we took off before sun up again. We had been on the road 15 minutes when I took this shot, just out of Parker.

Bouse, Az. Lot of snowbirds come here in winter.
I have read about it for years. My first visit. Looks like a ghost town right now. I do think I saw Wyatt Earp walking into one of those buildings.

Look at the old Ford on the trailer. This was just as we were coming into Phoenix.

Here is a Chrysler convert. It was slick. In Phoenix.

Here is as close as I wanted to get to down town Phoenix. Why is there so much traffic here at 930 am on a Monday? I have no clue but the hiways were packed tight.

This one was moving about 65 mph. It is a Smart Car being towed by a new smaller Chrysler class A motorhome. Answered my question as to whether or not these could be towed. Two old folks in the coach. These cars are very small. Much smaller than the VW bug. Advertized fuel mileage is very poor for such a small vehicle.

Back to the land of the cowboy cactus, just east of Globe.

I can not believe how green it is here for Sept. They have had an unusual amount of rain this summer. Water is running in the Gila river.

Passed two of these with license plates on them. Running about 50 mph. Looks like motorcycle tags. I don't think Mo. allows that.
It was a good day to drive 350 miles across the state of Az. It was hot until we climbed the hill at Superior. At 4400 ft. it cooled right off and stayed cool the rest of the trip. I was fixing to fire up the Onan and run the roof air when the temperature dropped about 25 degrees. Felt good. It was windy from Globe on over but the lower temps felt good. We have been in hundred degree heat for 3 days. I can take the wind with not problem compared to the heat. 7 hours and 350 miles. Not too bad. the coach drove great as always. I always hate to park. It is so much fun to drive the thing. Rides like an airplane with the air suspension and will basically steer itself.
Thanks for coming along. I think it is about supper time so I better get in the house. Loved seeing those three grandkids get off that bus and come running this afternoon.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Hot in California on the Colorado River

Oh yea, it is hot here in September. We turned on the air for the first time in a year. It blew dust in my eyes.
Here are some pictures from our sight seeing today.

Look how pretty it is on the Colorado, but hot. We have gone through here a few times but never got to enjoy it. This time I wanted to rest up and visit the area. Teri said ok.

Parker Dam. We got to drive across it. The Colorado River seperates California from Arizona here.

Look at those rugged mountains. I mean they are very rugged. I bet only rattle snakes live up there.

Here was the reason for our stay, I wanted to see this bridge. It is something. You can see where they put the pieces back together. Really neat.

We crossed it into California. I did not know they had it fixed to drive on.

A light pole on the bridge.

This guy was so fast that he nearly drove right out of the picture. He was getting it on too. Look at the slicks on this thing.

I guess I am weak when I see these old cars, got to have a picture.

A little fuzzy but really a good shot for passing by at 65 mph. Teri took it for me.

Playing on the water right behind our coach. These folks love the water. I don't blame them. If I lived around here I would do it too because it is about the only way to cool off.

Three bridges as we see them from the back of our coach.

I wonder whose good looking motorhome that is parked under, what they call a tree here. Looks good but dirty. the owner must be a bit lazy. Teri has her car backed in there beside it. That Vibe is so loaded down it looks like we lowered the thing 2 inches. rides like it too.
So, there you have the fun part of our day. With fun comes work. We could not dump our black tank, nothing would come out with everything open. Have you ever wondered what the inside of a black tank looks like. Well, I will wonder no more. Lets just say I got the broken valve open. What a relief, ha. I was sweating that. It wanted to go but was blocked. So, I gave it an inema, you might say.
Hope all had a great weekend. We are about the only ones left here tonight. Folks had to get back to work and left this afternoon. Lots of Los Angeles folks come here. We will leave around daylight again to beat all of the heat that we can. Heat is hard on vehicles, especially big ones like the GMC. If we can get through Phoenix and over the mountain at Superior and GLobe by noon I will feel really good. We hope to be at our daughter's when they get home from school on Monday. I will let you know if we made it.