Dec 012009

In a blog a few days ago, I wrote about the dumb mistakes all of us RVers make from time to time, no matter how long we’ve been at it. Just to reinforce that message, let me tell you about my latest blunder.

I was getting the motorhome unhooked and ready to hit the road yesterday morning, and since we might be overnight in a parking lot or two on our trip north to Indiana, I was filling our fresh water tank. Normally we only carry about 1/3 of a tank full of water, to keep our weight down, but when we know we might need it, we fill up.

After the water tank was full, I moved the knob in our Winnebago’s utility bay from the Fill Tank position back to the normal position that we use when in a campground with a water hookup. Then I reached over and slid the brass collar free on our Quick Connect fitting that connects the hose to the motorhome, never bothering to turn the water off at the campground outlet. Rainbow Plantation has darned good water pressure, which is a good thing, except on a chilly morning when you pull a stunt like that! I got a very cold shower before I could run over and turn the water off. Miss Terry got a real laugh out of that one! I’m glad one of us enjoyed it.   

We wanted to get an early start yesterday, but leaving an Escapees campground is never a quick thing. There are too many folks to say goodbye to! Dutch and Di Irrgang were parked a couple of sites down from us, and we stopped to see the complete re-do they had done on their beautiful Carriage fifth wheel. Dutch said they had been considering buying a new fiver, but they liked the floor plan of their present one so much that they had it remodeled for a whole lot less than the cost of a new rig. It came out great, and we were really impressed.

Between saying goodbye to several people and checking out at the campground office, it was 10 a.m. when we finally pulled out. We had an easy run north on State Route 59 to the junction with Interstate 65 at Bay Minette, and then took 65 on its path north across the state. We ran in a mixture that ranged from a light mist to showers until we got past Montgomery, with one stop for fuel at a Flying J. The Silverleaf and Miss Terry’s calculator agreed that we got 7.75 miles per gallon on our last tank of fuel.

Traffic began to get heavier as we approached Birmingham, and soon we were in a tangle of construction zones, kamikaze drivers in four wheelers, and truckers trying to dodge them as they merged without yielding,  and changed lanes without signaling. I don’t remember traffic in Birmingham being this hectic on past trips through the area, but after yesterday, I’m in no hurry to get back.

Once we were clear of Birmingham, we rolled north, making good time, and began to see blue sky above us, which was a welcome sight after the gloom we had been driving in.

By the time we crossed the Tennessee State Line it was late in the day and we were running out of time. It was getting pretty dark by 5:30 p.m., and though I had hoped to get past Nashville by the end of the day, it just wasn’t going to happen. We pulled into the Tennessean Truck Stop, about 60 miles south of Nashville, and parked way back in the furthest reaches of the lot, well away from the truckers. After a nice dinner in the truck stop restaurant, we returned to the motorhome, shivering all the way. The temperature had really dropped! We started the day wearing T-shirts, but walking back to the motorhome wearing a T-shirt, sweatshirt, and jacket, I was still cold! We fired up the Onan Quiet Diesel generator and turned on the heat pump to warm up the rig.  

Even with our late start, we covered 392 miles yesterday, and that’s a lot of driving in one day. Certainly much more than most RVers usually cover in a day. Usually 200 to 300 miles is a good day of driving in an RV, and gives you time to relax along the way, and get off the road and set up someplace early. But we’re not in a relaxed RV travel mode where we’re playing tourist, we’re in our “go fast” mode to get up to Elkhart and take care of our business up there. It’s too cold to play tourist!

Thought For The Day – Anger hurts you more than the person who upset you.

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Nick Russell

World-Famous, New York Times Best Selling Author, and All-Around Nice Guy!

  5 Responses to “Baby, It’s Cold Outside!”

  1. 1. Stay away from big cities — they ae a plague on RV travel!
    2. Wish I’d been there with my camera, except I probably would have dropped it while laughing along with Miss Terry!

  2. Did you consider just taking your van to Indiana ?
    Or just fly up there to get the bus sold ?

  3. Check your weather reports, it’s going to be below freezing at night up here in northern Indiana by tomorrow night..

    Have a safe trip..

  4. Nick I would think it’s better to get an unexpected shower at your site than at the dump station! Did you have an audience?

  5. Bob,
    it costs about the same either way once you factor in motels and restaurants, and we prefer to have our home with us.

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