Saturday, August 31, 2013


Today is the end of August.  We arrived on 11th to try to get our electrical problems, and we are still here in Red (red clay) Bay (bay trees) at the Tiffin factory repair facility.  Maybe this coming week will be the charm.

We did have an exciting day today.  After our morning walk and breakfast, Marty drove us to Florence for shopping.  We went to Dick’s Sporting goods for an Alabama football t-shirt for Marty while the ladies went in to Dollar Tree, followed by a stop at Ross Department Store.  After lunch at Zaxby’s, we went to Publix and Sam’s Club, for roasted chicken, before returning to the Allegro Campground.

It is still hot.

Hugs, and type at you later.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013


Yesterday began with our normal morning 3 mile walk (Marilyn does 3.5).  In the afternoon,  Marty drove us all to the Silver Dollar Salvage Grocery store across the line in Mississippi.  Later, Marilyn and I spent some time shopping, but not buying, in Tiffin’s building with returned parts.  We even walked through the “new” parts store.

Today, Marty drove us to Wal-Mart in Fulton, MS.  Just a normal shopping afternoon.  Then we left at 6pm and drove back to Fulton, MS to have dinner at Compadre’s Mexican restaurant in a strip mall near Wal-,Mart.  Each of us had a different dish, and all four of us thoroughly enjoyed the food and the company.

Sunday, August 25, 2013


Today marks the end of our second week in the Allegro Campground here in Red Bay (red clay and bay trees), Alabama.  We have not been called into a repair bay early.  Perhaps Norris was right when he said we would be here for 2 1/2 weeks.

Marty and Peggy McCauley arrived here at Red Bay Wednesday afternoon, so we went to Mr. J’s for a good pizza dinner night.  We have thoroughly enjoyed afternoon social hours with them.

Saturday morning, the four of us set off in Marty’s new Town & Country Van.  He drove north on the Natchez Trace, across the Tombigbee River to a little country road where Tom Hendricks had built a wall to commemorate the trails his Great-Great Grandmother Te-lah-nay (a Yuchi Indian) had walked when she and her sister had been driven out of northwest Alabama to the Indian Reservation in Oklahoma.  Te-lah-nay then walked back to the land of the Singing River.  Legends talked about building stone walls, so Tom Hendricks spent years, several pickup trucks and thousands of gloves hauling rocks from the river to his land to build his wall in memory of Te-lah-nay.  The wall stretches from one side of his driveway to commemorate her walk to Oklahoma, and in the other direction her walk back.

Here is a picture of Tom Hendricks (in the green t-shirt) who said I was capturing his Shadow.IMG_20130824_122130_494


These pictures are of the wall to Oklahoma, Marilyn, Marty and Peggy are standing at the end..  IMG_20130824_120030_462IMG_20130824_120048_336IMG_20130824_120226_658


These next pictures are of the wall on her way back to northwest Alabama.   The first picture shows some of the things that visitors leave on the wall.  Along the way there are places where people may sit and meditate about Te-lah-nay’s journey.IMG_20130824_114001_463IMG_20130824_114114_346IMG_20130824_114342_154IMG_20130824_114627_299IMG_20130824_115109_782IMG_20130824_115238_015

Tom Hendricks has a journal written by a gentleman that spent several days with Te-lah-nay writing here story in 1847.  This journal has been converted to a book entitled “If The Legends Fade” which Tom sells to visitors who come to see the wall.


After leaving the wall, Marty drove us to Tupelo, MS where we ate lunch at Chick-fil-A and then stopped to see Elvis’ Birthplace.  There is more to the Birthplace than just the little 2 room house built by Vernon Presley (Elvis’ father).  IMG_20130824_145909_937IMG_20130824_150018_829


There is a museum, a 1939 Plymouth like the one that Elvis and his family moved in from Tupelo to Memphis.IMG_20130824_145549_436

Elvis returned to Tupelo to perform at a concert early in his career.  He gave all of the proceeds from the career to the city of Tupelo if they would buy the house he was born in, 15 acres of land and convert the property into a park for the children.  Over time, they have moved the church attended by Elvis to the property where visitors can attend a movie of a service like Elvis would have attended.IMG_20130824_152226_193

Of course, the museum has Elvis memorabilia, and souvenirs.  Following are pictures of the interior of the house Elvis was born in (it had changed hands several times so the furniture is what it might have looked like).IMG_20130824_161053_910IMG_20130824_161347_185IMG_20130824_161352_841


Finally, here is a picture of the four of us:  Marilyn and I, along with Marty and Peggy McCauley.IMG_20130824_160225_313


Hugs, and Type at You Later.

Monday, August 19, 2013


We started celebrating our 46th Anniversary yesterday.  First stop was the Frank Lloyd Wright-Rosenbaum house in Florence, AL.  It is a very interesting house.  The Rosenbaum’s were married in 1938, and with the cash furnished by his parents, they hired Frank Lloyd Wright to design their home.  The home was built for $14,000 and finished in 1940 for move in.  When the family grew with 4 boys, they had to enlarge the house.  The house is built with with square boxes for rooms and flat roofs.  DSC02724DSC02725DSC02726DSC02727

The walls were made of brick, wood and glass.  The flooring is all concrete.  Inside, everything was very plain:  low ceilings, built-in cabinets, drawers, closets, tiny kitchen, with almost everything made out of plywood.  We enjoyed the tour.

Next up was a late afternoon lunch (very early dinner) at Olive Garden in Florence.  It was a nice meal with a glass of celebratory wine.  Finally, before heading back to Red Bay, we shopped at WalMart and Publix.  At home, some Kahlua topped off the evening.

Today, the 19th is our actual Anniversary.  So, since we are waiting for repairs here in Red Bay, we decided to take the factory tour after breakfast.  After lunch was time to relax; do a little cleaning, genealogy, etc. Then, it was time to celebrate again with a Manhattan followed by a delicious rib eye steak dinner.  We even ended the evening with a delicious Kahlua cordial.

All in all, we have had another wonderful Anniversary on the road.  We have had prior anniversaries at rallies, Escapades, etc., so waiting for repairs doesn’t make a difference as long as we are together.

Hugs, and Type at You Later.

Friday, August 16, 2013


2013-08-14:  We had a quiet celebration of Marilyn’s birthday here in the Allegro Campground waiting for Tiffin’s factory service.  I cooked salmon on the grill (after Marilyn prepared it for me), and so we had a delicious, quiet dinner at home with champagne.

2013-08-15:  We had to get up early to be at Bay Diesel by 8am, and we actually arrived early.  Jason was prepared for us and had me drive right into the bay.  We continued our celebration of Marilyn’s birthday by having breakfast at Swamp John’s.  Actually, we went out to breakfast because we had had to get up so early.  Chris at Bay Diesel suggested that we try the Chocolate Gravy on a biscuit.  We did, and it was interesting.  The rest of the morning was spent in the waiting lounge.  Just before lunch we found out that the motorhome was ready.  I checked in with Jason, and he showed me that there had been a 3 or 4 inch hole in the exhaust pipe between the engine and muffler.  It is quieter again, and no longer stinks.  Back at the Allegro Campground, we enjoyed another salmon dinner.

2013-08-16:  After walking, we made 2 trips to the post office to mail packages, bought tomatoes and onions at the market, and shopped at the Dollar General Market.  Back at the campground, Steve Masterson invited us to dinner tomorrow night.

Hugs, and Type at You Later

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


2013-08-12:  After lunch, I checked with the campground office to see if Norris (service writer) worked in the afternoon.  I was told that he worked until 3pm, but since we had arrived on the 11th, we should not expect him until the 13th.  I left our name and site number to let Norris know that we would not be there for the afternoon.  Marilyn and I drove to Tupelo, MS to shop at Sam’s Club and WalMart.  We were back about 5:15pm.  We still have to find a bottle of champagne for the 14th.

2013-08-13:  Morris came by this morning and reviewed our repair list.  It will be 2 1/2 weeks before we get in to a bay, so we will be staying here in the Allegro Campground.  After breakfast, I called Bay Diesel and made an appointment for Thursday to have our exhaust leak fixed.  That leak could be the cause of electrical short.  Then we went to Repair Bay #29 to see Tonya about getting the MCD shades for our windshield.  She said that because of the curve in our television cabinet Tiffin did not carry one for our rig.  The ones carried here are a straight rod across the windshield.  She indicated, and I found on the web site, that MCD makes a split set of windshield screens, so we will talk to the folks at the Tampa RV Show to see what we can do (of course we could drive to the MCD factory in McKinney Texas sometime).

That is all for now.  Type at you later.

Monday, August 12, 2013


2013-08-10:  Today, I paid the car and motorhome insurance.  Then I paid for another year to be on the Sumter Oaks ERPU list.  We are number 8 on the list which will provide us an RV site for 5 years with a yearly cost of $750 plus electric.  We will also have to pay about $15,000 which will be returned at the end of the 5 year lease if we do not renew for $1, or whenever we cease wanting the long term lease.  We spent some time talking with Wanda and Wallace.  Overall, it has been a nice relaxing day

2013-08-11:  We left Raccoon Valley around 10am EST, and headed south on I-75 to Chattanooga, west on I-24, US 72, and AL 24 to Red Bay, AL.  We are parked in Tiffin Motorhome’s Allegro Campground on site No. 90.  We got the second to last full service site.  What a surprise, Steve Masterson is our next door neighbor.

2013-08-12:  This morning, Marilyn got me up at six to go walking before it gets too hot.  As we were eating breakfast one of the technicians came by to check our roof rails, the bottom of our driver’s side slide floor, and the wet bay.  Our wet bay floor was fixed a couple of years ago, and our 2006 Phaeton was made different from the 2007 and later models so we do not have a problem with the roof rails and the slide floor.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013


Day before yesterday, in addition to writing a blog, I filled the fresh water tank, added a little water to the batteries, and checked the air in the motorhome tires.  Then yesterday, I backed up some computer files on my computer, and on Larry Jarvis’.

This morning, we said our goodbyes and left the Jarvis yard about about 10am.  First we drove to the fire hall to hitch the Jeep, and then we headed south and west.  We are stopped for the night at WalMart in Ashland, OH.  Tomorrow, we will move to Dayton, OH to have dinner with our daughter.

Monday, August 5, 2013

2013-08-05, Monday

As I wrote previously, we lost shore power electricity at the beginning of last month, but we still had a good couple of weeks parked in my sister’s driveway. Our 12 volt electric still worked, and we borrowed a 10 amp battery charger from my brother-in-law to keep the batteries up.  We also ran 75 feet of extension cord in a window so we could make coffee and toast in the morning, charge our phones and computers, and run my CPAP at night.  I was able to do some genealogy work, scanning pictures, getting pictures at local cemeteries, etc.

There were only two locations on Tiffin Motorhomes Inc.’s website to get repairs for our Phaeton in New York State.  One was in North Tonawanda a few miles from our friends, Larry & Carolyn Jarvis; and the other was near Albany, NY.  We chose the one in North Tonawanda since we could stay in Larry & Carolyn’s side yard, and were able to obtain an appointment for the 17th of July to determine what was wrong with our electricity.  Colton RV determined that there was a short that could be fixed with a new inverter.  After calling daily and being told that the inverter was not in, I stopped over on Wednesday the 24th.  Sean said that he would check with the parts department.  I overheard one service writher say that David, who I had dealt with, was no longer with the company.  After a while, Sean said that an inverter was being shipped from Red Bay, AL that afternoon.

On Monday, the 29th, I went back to Colton RV’s after lunch, and was told that the inverter had been received, and that they would put it in the next day (Tuesday) if I could bring over the motorhome at 8am.  After waiting all day on Tuesday, the technician said there was a short that he could fix by running a new wire to the GFI plug from the inverter, so we slept in a Jarvis spare room.  He did that on Wednesday, and we now had electricity on the passenger side  receptacles, but he said there was still a short, so on Thursday, he ran another wire from the inverter to the refrigerator.  This provided electricity to the receptacles on the driver’s side slide.  So we took the RV back Thursday night, after spending Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday in Colton’s waiting room.  (Total cost $200 deductible plus an additional $567).  We thought it could have been worse since their hourly rate was $125.

After dinner we found that the receptacle in the bedroom that I plug my CPAP into did not work.  Friday morning we found that the electric hot water did not work, the receptacle for heating the engine oil did not work, and one of the circuit breakers did not work (it still has a short somewhere).  Went back to Colton’s, and about 3pm we were told that the tech still had not found the short, which was probably the cause of the problem in the first place.. 

Marilyn suggested that we pack up and go to the manufacturer in Red Bay, AL.  The service writer thought that might be a good idea.  We had originally come here because our extended warranty would run out at 70,000 miles and we now have 69,700, so the inverter would not have been covered by the time we reached Alabama.

So, day after tomorrow, we will start our drive south.