First of all, we were very happy to celebrate Jan, Karen, and Nancy's mom, Vivian's 95th birthday. Even with oxygen and a newly fractured arm, she has a feisty sense of humor, and keeps all of us in line.
|Left to right, Tom, Karen, Nancy, the birthday girl, Jan, and CT|
Happy Birthday Viv!!
Which brings up the emotion and transition. Jan and I have become very fond of the West, funny with neither one of us growing up out here. And it's interesting that her two sisters have moved out west as well, both in New Mexico. The weather, low humidity, views and vistas, and few crowds call to us. But we still like our winters in Florida, so it comes at this time that we ease out of our traveling time and towards our winter time. We are starting to make lists of things to accomplish this winter, mostly on the motorhome, and start to look forward to seeing all of our Florida friends. But honestly, not so much to the humidity, traffic, and sitting still for so long.
We have a few more stops on our way, Amarillo where we usually get our oil and filters changed at Speedco, to see our daughter Kelly in Dallas, stop in Atlanta to see friends, our dentist and a doc, set up an appointment in Ocala to have our transmission filters and fluid changed, set up a meet with Chris to see about Guardian Plates for our slide out corners, and finally pull into our winter home at Royal Coachman Resort in Nokomis, FL by early December.
If you're not familiar with Speedco, we have been using them for our oil changes, fuel filter changes, and chassis lube for quite a few years, mostly in Amarillo, although we have used other locations as well and have always been pleased. They are like a Jiffy Lube for big trucks and motorhomes as well. They are quick, affordable, encourage you to watch, and have done a good job for us.
We have an Allison transmission which I would say the vast majority of diesel pushers have, there are different sizes, but generally they are pretty much the same. They require a filter change every 75,000 miles or 3 years, and a change of fluid every 300,000 miles or 4 years. Well, time flies and it's been 4 years and 50,000 miles so we are due. We liked the Detroit Diesel/Allison shop in Ocala where we had our engine's valve lash done and will try to have them do it on our way into Florida, and if that doesn't work we will do it on the way out next spring.
One of our bigger projects this winter will be to install Guardian Plates on at least two of our four slides. Monaco coaches have an inherent issue with their slide corners. The way Monaco elected to construct them made them susceptible to moisture penetrating the bottom corner and many have experienced slide floor rot that translates into huge bucks to repair, so the answer is to inspect and caulk very regularly, and even then moisture may still get in. Well, Chris Throgmartin, and his wife Ingrid, have been manufacturing awning fabric replacements for RV's for some time in the form of Stone Vos, and Chris is very active in the RV community at many shows and rallies. Chris founded Talin Manufacturing when he invented a clever and permanent repair for our slide corners called Guardian Plates. We have set up an appointment to meet with Chris and have him measure our slides for the plates and will order as many as we need, and install them this winter. He is located in Brooksville, FL right along our way.
So Jan and I are arranging all this, deciding our route back, all the while sad to leave the West, and at the same time looking forward to getting to Florida.