I Must Be Crazy

 Posted by at 12:02 am  Nick's Blog
Nov 052015

Seriously, I know a lot of you have suspected it for a long time, and now I’m beginning to wonder, too. We left the beautiful Oregon coast because it was getting cold, with temperatures down into the 40s at night. And where did we end up? On California’s Central Coast, where it was in the mid-30s last night. What’s wrong with this picture? But I have a good reason to be here, which I’ll tell you about shortly. But first, let’s talk about yesterday’s travels.

After a couple of rounds of hugs and promises to hook up somewhere in Arizona this winter if at all possible, we left our pal Nancy Kissack‘s place in Atwater, California a little after 10 yesterday morning. We took State Route 140 west to the small agricultural community of Gustine, and on to Interstate 5 a couple of miles past Gustine. State Route 140 was a good two lane road, the kind we love to travel on, and except for a bothersome crosswind it was a good trip.

We turned south on Interstate 5, which gave us that most rare of all phenomena in the RV world, a tailwind that pushed us right along for the next 90 miles. We were in the San Joaquin Valley, known as the “Food Basket of the World.” Farmers here grow a huge diversity of produce, everything from walnuts to citrus, peaches, garlic, tomatoes, alfalfa, and other crops.

We were rolling along, enjoying the ride and the scenery, what there was of it, when all of a sudden our Jacks Down alarm started beeping. This has happened several times since we’ve had our Winnebago Ultimate Advantage, and the jacks are never really down, it’s just a glitch in the sensor. The shoulders were very narrow along the highway and I didn’t want to pull over there, so I had Miss Terry check our road atlas and she said we were about six miles from a rest area. So we just listened to the annoying beep until we got there. I pulled into one of the truck parking spaces, pushed the button to deploy the jacks, and as soon as they touched the pavement I turned the switch off. Then I turned it back on and retracted the jacks and the beeping stopped. Sometimes the sound of silence is very nice.

We got off the interstate and onto State Route 269 and followed it a few hilly miles to Avenel, where we picked up State Route 33 and took it south through winding hill country to State Route 41, which merged with State Route 46.

Curves small

We like old barns and Terry never misses an opportunity to photograph one when she sees it.

Old Barn small

There wasn’t a lot of traffic until we hit State Route 46, then it got busier, with a lot of eighteen wheelers going both ways, and a long construction zone.

California two lane small

We passed Chalome, where a monument commemorates the death of movie star James Dean, the Rebel Without a Cause, who was killed when he crashed his sports car there in 1955.

James Dean

From Chalome, it was another 20 miles west to Paso Robles, where we got on US Highway 101, a good divided four lane highway that we followed 10 miles south to Atascadero. The Elks Lodge here has 16 back in full hookup 30/50 amp RV sites. We will be here for a few days, mostly to visit nearby Morro Bay.

Atascadaro Elks small

And as for the reason we’re here when it’s this cold? Terry and I honeymooned in Morro Bay 18 years ago, come January. It’s probably my favorite place in California, no, scratch that, it is my favorite place in California. So we will relive old times, almost certainly eat some delicious seafood, and take a bunch of pictures of the monolith that stands in the bay and gives the community its name. I want to use it on a book cover one of these days.

Speaking of books, my friend Suzie O’Connell has just released a new romance called Mistletoe Kisses and it’s on sale for a limited time only on Amazon. Suzie’s Northstar Romances series (see below) is very popular and has earned her many fans. Get yourself a copy of Mistletoe Kisses and I bet you’ll become a fan, too.

It’s Thursday, and that means it’s time to kick off a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Mountain Angel, the first book in Suzie O’Connell’s Northstar Romances series. To enter, all you have to do is click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening.


Thought For The Day – I have never in my life learned anything from any man who agreed with me.

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Nick Russell

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

  4 Responses to “I Must Be Crazy”

  1. I occasionally have the jack problem with my Winnebago. I just hit the retract button while I am driving and usually that takes care of the problem.I do not have to stop and extend and retract like you did.

  2. Hope you enjoy exploring my neighborhood.

  3. I think I posted my response on the wrong day . I asked if you checked out the Oceano Elks lodge RV park on the entrance to the dunes. A good place to go fly your kites.

  4. Nick, we had the same problem with our Dutch Star, and someone told us to get heavier springs put on the jacks. They said the springs get old? looser? and drop 1/4 inch, which is enough to set off the alarms. We had it done in northern Florida, around Ocala, I think. I could probably find the name of the place if you want it. It solved the problem completely. Never happened again.

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