Wednesday, September 25, 2013


We left River Forks RV Park and Campground Friday morning the 20th, and drove 137 miles to R Shaefer Heard Corps of Engineers Park near West Point, Georgia.  We drove in I-985 to I-85 to I-285 around to the south, to I-85 to West Point Lake.  Marilyn rode the white knuckle route around Atlanta, but it was not that bad.  We are located on Site #2.  The first problem was no electric, but, after going back to the office, the circuit breaker was changed out.  The next problem we are living with.  Internet service is negligible – none to 1x to 3x, and back.  When we return in another week, we will take a site on the other side of the park where, after our morning walks, the internet seems to be better.

I have still had plenty to do on the computer organizing pictures, and identifying people in them   This time spent will help with my continued genealogy work.

This afternoon, I received an email from a good friend wanting help with his Excel files.  He needed to summarize the mileage and costs he was tracking.  These are a fairly easy addition problem.  If you only have a few numbers to add together, the easiest way is a formula that adds the amount in cell #1 to the amount in cell #2,, where cells are referenced by a column letter (a,b,c) and a row number (1,2,3).  Thus a formula in cell can start with an (=) sign in cell (a4) plus cell references.  (ie =a1+a2+a3) resulting in 2+2+2=6.

If the column has a long list of cells to be added, a (Sum) formula if the easiest path.  Filling in the formula is sort of like highlighting a column to copy and paste.  Begin the formula in the cell where you want the result.  The formula looks like this:  =sum(a1:a3).  This will add whatever numbers are in cells 1 through 3 of column as together.  The formula can be expanded to more cells in the range just by inserting rows between rows a1 and a2 as long as the original cell a3 remains the ending cell of the formula.

During our morning walk, on the 23rd, I spotted the svelte figure of a person that I remembered from our early day with Escapees Chapter 16.  So I walked up and asked him if he had been a member of ch 16.  He said yes and we introduced ourselves.  He is Marion Alley, so we spent the next half hour remembering several wonderful rallies that we had attended.  There was one at which he provided his grill trailer.  He gave us each a steak, and said we should take it off the grill when it was done.  At a Chinese Care Auction, they auctioned a bottle of little blue pills that we all tried to end up with.  Oh well, they were actually little blue M&M’s.  We had fun anyway.

Today, the 24th, we went to Wal-Mart and Kroger in Valley, AL, the town just across the Alabama border from West Point, GA.  Thank you, Denny Orr, for teaching us to eat cheaply at McDonald’s with McDoubles, and a senior drink.  The two of us ate for less than $5.  Of course the cheapest meal we had in the last couple of weeks was at Sam’s Club where we had Hot Dogs for less than $3.

Today, the 25th, we drove to Columbus, GA – 44 miles.  We are staying at Lake Pines Campground,  Finally, back to good internet service.  We will have diner tonight with our Son – Doug.  Have to wait until he gets home from work – can’t wait.

Type at you later.

Thursday, September 19, 2013


We have been walking around the campground and park here at River Forks RV Park and Campground before breakfast every morning.  We have seen a couple of deer each morning.  Yesterday there were 3 and this morning 5 walked across the road at the deer crossing sigh. 

Yesterday we had lunch with Roger and Roxanna Dubrulle at the Cracker Barrel in Braselton. 2013-09-18 11.57.07  I used to work in the same office as Roger, and we have both been members of Escapees Chapter 16 for a long time.  We talked about families, the chapter, taxes, etc. and just had a great lunch talking inside Cracker Barrel, and then out on the rocking chairs.

After leaving Roger and Roxanna, we drove to Jan McCabe’s house in Snellville to have a glass of wine, chips and dip before going to dinner at Olive Garden.  We were joined for dinner by Merwin and Corliss Chambers, and Bob and Sandy Davis.  We all socialized around helping the Brookwood Band Association while our children were in the band during High School.  We spent the evening reminiscing about old times and how our children were doing today.

I was able to get pictures of Merwin, Jan and Corliss, but forgot to take pictures of Bob and Sandy. 2013-09-18 19.59.142013-09-18 19.59.41

Tuesday, September 17, 2013


Yesterday afternoon, I received a Facebook Message from Erin Barnes, the daughter of my best friend from when we lived in Snellville, GA.  We spent our children’s high school band years working together to support the band.  Sadly, Ed passed away from brain cancer in 2006.  Erin invited us to go to lunch today with her, her husband, Jason, their son Jack, and Erin’s mother, Jan McCabe.  Since it has been at least 5 or 6 years since we had seen them, we thoroughly enjoyed catching up on everyone’s lives for a couple of hours.

We have a great site here at River Forks RV Park and Campground looking out onto Lake Lanier. 2013-09-17 16.46.26

Monday, September 16, 2013


We left Lyerly, GA and our good friends Bea & Bennit Mason this morning, and drove across North Georgia to Gainsville – 122 miles.  We are currently parked in a beautiful county park – River Forks RV Park and Campground.  We will be here until Friday morning.

Sunday, September 15, 2013


We are still in Bea & Bennit Mason’s side yard. IMG_20130909_095631_783


Wallace & Wanda Lewis came yesterday from Raccoon Valley (Knoxville, TN) to visit Wanda’s cousin Bea, and to go to their family reunion today.  We had a wonderful visit last night with them.  Of course Bea, Wanda and Marilyn spent a lot of time yesterday evening cooking to get ready for the reunion.

Today, the the 15th, the ladies continued cooking all morning, and packing the food to be transported to the reunion.  There were two large picnic tables filled with food for the afternoon meal, and very little left to be taken home.  We thoroughly enjoyed meeting Bea and Wanda’s relatives.  The first two pictures are before the crowd actually arrived.  IMG_20130915_123737_158IMG_20130915_123744_222


Here is Wallace and his sister Elaine. IMG_20130915_123804_858 


Of course there were two lines “dipping” their plates.  No one left hungry.IMG_20130915_125933_863


Bea made some more of her delicious yeast rolls for dinner, plus there were a few leftovers of banana pudding, etc. for us to sample.  Bea even gave us some apple dumplings for more dessert before we go to bed, and rolls for breakfast tomorrow.

Everything was delicious about today, and we thank Bea and Bennit for their hospitality, and for inviting us to their family reunion.

Hugs, and Type at You Later.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

2013-09-12 Ruby Falls

Today, Marilyn and I drove the Jeep up the “CSA (Confederate States of America) Army of the Tennessee Highway” (US-27) toward Chattanooga to see Ruby Falls.

I am going to include some history about Ruby Falls from paraphrased from Wikipedia.  “Ruby Falls Cave, unlike Lookout Mountain Cave, had no natural openings and could not be entered until the 20th Century;…  In 1905 the natural entrance to Lookout Mountain Cave was closed during the construction of a railway tunnel. In the 1920s a chemist and cave enthusiast named Leo Lambert thought that he could re-open the cave as a tourist attraction, and formed a company to do so. He planned to make an opening further up the mountain than the original opening and transport tourists to the cave via an elevator. For this purpose, his company purchased land on the side of Lookout Mountain above Lookout Mountain Cave and in 1928 began to drill through the limestone. In doing so, they discovered a small passageway about 18 inches high and four feet wide. Exploring this opening, Lambert discovered the formerly hidden Ruby Falls Cave and its waterfall.  On his next trip to visit the cave, Lambert took his wife Ruby, and told her that he would name the falls after her.”

It is interesting that, to this day, the entrance to the Ruby Falls Cave is via an elevator.  In 1975, a second exit cave was cut in case of elevator failure.

The cave floor is an easy 1/2 mile walk to the falls, and of course, a 1/2 mile walk back.  There are a few steps, some water, and an occasional low ceiling.  As with many caves, there are some very different formations of stalagmites and stalactites  I took lots of pictures, some with, and some without flash.  Due to the lighting of the various formations, some looked better without the flash.  Here are a few.



Some of the formations have names, some of which you must stretch your imagination to see what someone else saw.  (1) is an elephant’s foot, (2) the Hall of Dreams, (3) Leaning Tower, (4) Niagara Falls, (5) a better view of Niagara Falls, (6) a Western Sunset, (7) the Mirror Pool is a blue lit pool of water, (8) supposed to be two potatoes next to a steak.   DSC07168DSC07185DSC07189DSC07195DSC07199DSC07200DSC07201DSC07212DSC07219DSC07223


This picture was one I found unusual. DSC07202


Pictures of the falls themselves are interesting because of the lighting.  As I stood there taking pictures the lens became spotted with the mist.DSC07204DSC07206DSC07207


Just to prove we were there, our guide took a picture with my camera.  DSC07208

Hugs, and Type at You Later.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013


This afternoon, we rode in to Rome, GA with Bea and Bennit for a doctor’s appointment.  Then we wondered around Rome doing some sightseeing, along with a stop at Sam’s Club.  After going home to drop off all of the goodies, we went to dinner at Jim’s, which is a little country restaurant famous for its catfish.  Bea, Bennit, and Marilyn had the fried catfish, while I had their special for the night – cubed steak with white gravy, salad and okra.  The food was delicious.

After dinner, we drove around Summerville to see what the town had to offer.  The highlight of this evening was driving past Howard Finster’s Paradise Garden. `IMG_20130911_180348_394IMG_20130911_180413_118


We even got to see some of his yard art. 20130911_180558

Hugs, and Type at You Later.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


Since Sunday, we have been enjoying visiting with Bea and Bennitt Mason parked in one of the three full hook-up sites that they have in their side yard in Lyerly, GA.  It is in northwest Georgia, north of Rome.  Bennitt is doing well, and Bea looks great.  Chicken has definitely been on the menu:  Bea made fake fried chicken (baked) Sunday, Marilyn made pineapple/BBQ sauce chicken in the crock pot for Monday, and, for lunch today, we stopped in Fort Payne, AL for KFC’s chicken buffet.

This morning, Bea drove the four of us around to show Marilyn and I the sights in the area.  First up was a church that was witness to a Civil War battle. It was built in 1853, and there are still Sunday services inside today.DSC02728DSC02730


Next we went to the Little River Canyon near Fort Payne, AL.  The falls, river and flowers were beautiful.  DSC02732DSC02735DSC02741DSC02742DSC02746DSC02750


Further along the road with the Little River Canyon pull-offs was this rock formation that the road had to go around.  DSC02754DSC02755DSC02756DSC02758


On the side of the road was this tree trying to grow next to the rock wall.  Notice how it flattened itself against the rock, and then grew round again when it was past the tight spot.  DSC02759DSC02760


Randy Owen, from “Alabama” lives on a large farm in the area, so we took pictures of the gate to his house.  DSC02771DSC02772


After a buffet lunch where we overate, we decided to go back to the house for naps.

Hugs, and type at you later.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

2013-09-07: We left Red Bay

Wednesday, the 5th, we went out to dinner with Gary & Mary Olson to Reeves Steak and Sea Food.  Marilyn, Gary and I had the rib eye steaks, and they were good.  Mary had a chicken dinner, and we all partook of their delicious salad bar.  Then, last night, the 6th, Mary cooked us a pork chop dinner in her crockpot, and Marilyn provided her delicious blueberry crumb cake for dessert.  Shared meals with great friends are always wonderful.  During our morning walk we met Jim Lynch and his delightful wife.  They were parked next to our friends Gary & Mary, so of course we had to stop, talk and be introduced.  We learned that Jim (retired in 1999) was the IRS Chief of the Examination Division in the Nashville District.  I enjoyed meeting him.  (I spent most of my career working in the Atlanta District Examination Division).

This morning, the 7th, we had to say goodbye to our friends Gary & Mary because we had decided this would be our day to leave The Allegro Campground in Red Bay, AL.  We could have left on the 5th when our repairs were completed, but (in addition to wanting to spend a couple of days with Gary & Mary), we decided to wait a couple of days to make sure that the repairs stayed repaired.  Our route to eastern Alabama was to go west to Mississippi to go north for 18 miles on the Natchez Trace to US 72, and then east through Decatur, Huntsville, to Parnell Creek RV Park in Woodville, AL. 

Tomorrow we get to go see Bea and Bennit Mason in Lyerly, GA.

Thursday, September 5, 2013


Today is our 26th day here at the Allegro Campground in Red Bay, AL.  Tiffin has finished the repairs that we requested plus a few.  The electrical short was fixed on Tuesday, the 3rd, and Billy finished by getting electricity to the outlet by the bed Wednesday morning.  That outlet had worked with the inverter until Colton RV in North Tonawanda, NY screwed up the coach.  Billy checked, and our Phaeton model was built without inverter power to that outlet.  Oh well, we just have to use an extension cord now when we dry camp.  Boy, when things start working here they go fast.  On Wednesday afternoon, we were called in to Bay 31 to have the kitchen faucet tightened, and we were told that no lock washer or nut would fit, so it will probably start wobbling again.  This morning, Thursday, the 5th, we were called to bay 39 to get our jacks adjusted so they would work on the “auto” setting.  When we pulled into the bay, and the technician put down the jacks, the driver’s side rear jack would not go down.  This was the first time that jack had not worked.  So we are the proud owners of a new rear jack.  Who knows how long it will be before the other two will not work.

Yesterday after dinner, Gary and Mary Olson completed their pilgrimage from Lost Wages to Red Bay.  It sure is good to see them again, even if the only reason is because they are having problems with their Allegro Bus.

We will probably stay until Saturday or Sunday, then we can stir the Jell-O some more.