On the road again, finally

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Tom

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Yesterday (Tues 12/26) was our planned departure date, but I just ran out of time getting things done. Rather than run at night for the last few hours, we stayed home overnight and left this morning.

As we left our community this morning, one lane was blocked by a large tree downed by the high winds we had all night.

At our lunch stop I stepped out of the coach to check tire temperatures and, as I hit the steps, I had a "soft" feeling under my feet. Sure enough, a bolt had dropped out. At the auto parts store in the next town, a farming community, I was surprised to find grade 8 bolts, and re-attached the step in the rain.

We'd planned on staying the night at Bakersfield, CA but figured we could easily make California City (near Mojave), so we headed over the Tehachepis. Two accidents and associated backups later, we'd lost more than an hour. But we would still make CA City with plenty of daylight remaining. It was snowing over Tehachepi Pass.

As we reached the Hwy 14 exit from Hwy 58 we were stopped by a CHP officer wearing goggles; He looked more like a diver than a CHP officer, but the wind was pretty vicious. He told us he wouldn't allow us to head for CA City because we'd be sure to be overturned by the wind. So, on to Barstow.

When I called the campground in CA City to let them know we wouldn't be arriving, they explained that a big rig had overturned in the wind.

We eventually arrived in Barstow after dark and are now settled in for the night. It's a KOA and hasn't disappointed me in my low expectations of KOA's.
 

Ron

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You have my sympathies having to stay at KOA.  But glad you have had safe travel even though there were delays.  Wish you a safe journey.
 

caltex

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Tom, I don't know the area, buy looking at the map, the CA City cutoff and the road to Barstow seem to be in the same wind area.  Was there that much difference on highway 14?
 

Tom

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Thanks Ron. There really wasn't a lot of choice of CG and we needed to get off the road. A "premium" 50A site at a premium rate. Someone forgot to install the 50A receptacle, but 30A is fine. The "pad" is all dirt, but also OK for one night.

I just got through installing the DVR stolen from our family room. I'm watching recorded rubgy on our newly-installed 32" LCD TV. I have a number of rugby games in the record queue, including one of the Japanese touring teams.

Tomorrow  we get to hook up with several Framily members in Las Vegas.
 

Tom

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Robert, it's still windy in Barstow, but not as bad as it was around Mojave (near Edwards AFB). That CHP officer was hanging onto the door of our coach to stop himself being turned into tumble weed. I thought about grabbing my camera, but figured he wouldn't be amused.
 

Jim Dick

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Tom,

The start of your trip sure doesn't seem fortuitous. We will try to have good weather for you when you arrive in Florida!!!!
 

Tom

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We'll be looking forward to some good weather Jim! BTW here's the story on the TV and the reason I recently asked where you bought yours ....

Near the end of our last trip the tube TV up front in the coach went out. Having repaired TVs for a living many moons ago, I immediately knew it was the flyback transformer. When we got home I pulled the TV out, put it in the garage and let it gather dust for a few months. When I got around to looking at it, sure enough the flyback transformer was out. A simple fix and maybe a $35 part, but I couldn't see how to remove the motherboard without destroying it.

Since our cabinet is made for only one make/model of TV, I shopped for an LCD set for several months and repeatedly walked away with sticker shock. With our trip only a week away, I reluctantly loaded the old set into the Suburban and headed to the nearest repair shop a few days before Christmas. As I turned the corner onto the highway I heard the TV move and pulled over. Not thinking, I opened the rear door and the TV promptly fell to the ground - not a pretty sight. This was obviously a sign that it was time to buy a new TV.
 

Ned

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It can only get better from here on, Tom :)  We've stayed at the Barstow KOA and then discovered that Lorna had 2 classmates just a half mile up the frontage road with a huge open front yard where we could boondock.  We've never gone back to the KOA.
 

Tom

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RV Roamer said:
You sure seem to be having a rough beginning....

Nah, I feel quite lucky because we were able to take them all in our stride and every situation has a silver lining. When we were delayed leaving, I told Chris "we're retired and are not on a schedule". Had we left on our planned day, we'd have been driving the last 2-3 hours in the dark in heavy rain and high winds. Had we left a day later than we did, we might not have got over Tehachepi Pass as easily as we did (they were moving snow ploughs in place as we came over).

There was a parallel story on the TV. I've been wanting to replace that tube TV and the one in the salon of the boat for some time. When I shopped I had dimensions for both locations in hand, but really didn't want to buy two TVs. The day the TV fell on the ground I went to a store and found one set that would fit both needs and bought it without further thought. All I need is a second wall mount to be able to switch the set between both locations. I told Chris that was the quickest I've ever bought anything.
 

Tom

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Ned said:
...t Lorna had 2 classmates just a half mile up the frontage road with a huge open front yard where we could boondock.

Lorna's going to have to introduce us  ;D
 

Ron

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Tom said:
Will do Ron. Whereabouts are you in TX?

We are currently in Dickinson South of Houston till probably the 30th then to Livingston for vehicle inspections.  We can arrange to meet you in the Houston area or where ever.
 

Tom

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Ron, doesn't look like our schedules will coincide. I'll call you to see if we can converge.
 

Jim Dick

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Tom,

Sorry to hear about the TV disaster but it looks like you have solved your problem. :) Sometimes fate intervenes at just the right time.
 

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