Friday, February 17, 2012

Moving Around Florida

   We can only stay 2 weeks in a Thousand Trails park and that is usually long enough for us. Before we left the Orlando area we went back to one of our favorite Hispanic restaurants El Cerro. We love the food there. We had a short ride of 60 miles over to the Tampa area to Lazydays. They have a nice campground where you get the Tampa paper everyday and free WiFi. Over at the dealership they have a free breakfast and lunch everyday except Sunday. And because of a mess up with there service department last year the week was free. While we were there the local Escapee Chapter was having a rally there and it was nice chatting with those folks. We checked out the motor homes there but we didn’t find anything we like more than ours. Not even close. We got to go for dinner to one of our favorite restaurants Plummers. It’s not a fancy place but it’s good comfort food and their soup the best I have had. This time it was a kielbasa stew and it was to die for. We also went over to Plant City and picked up some strawberries. Florida has the best strawberries and this year they are plentiful. I think we’re on our 4th 1/2 flat. Paula likes to go to a casino occasionally so we also went over to Tampa to the casino. Our next trip was a little longer. 70 some miles down to the SKP park in Wauchula. We were going to stay there 10 days and then move over to the Peace River Thousand  for 6. The SKP parks are all 1st come 1st served. They never turn a member away but some times you have to camp in a no facilities area until a full hook up spot opens. When I called the SKP park the day before we left to find out if they were full they told me there would probably be at least 8 rv’s ahead of us for a full hookup site. I checked the Thousand Trails web site and they had availability for 2 weeks so we decided to go to the SKP park for 2 Nights and then move. We did go to BINGO at the the SKP park and I had a rare BINGO but had to share it with 2 other folks. We did hate leaving there as everyone was so friendly but we are now at the Peace River Thousand Trails. We are parked in a water & electric site. We could have moved to a full hook up site but there was only 1 full hook up site when it was our turn and we didn’t want that site. We have a satellite dome on out roof for Directv and we try and get a site with a clear view of the southern sky. We’re here for 2 weeks and probably won’t be doing much. Time for some down time. There is a restaurant that some folks we were talking to yesterday  recommended and that is in our future. Tonight we’re having shrimp tacos. The only place we have ever found them is Algodones Mx. We mentioned shrimp tacos to a Spanish lady who was checking us out and she said she never heard of them. They are great.

Thursday, February 2, 2012


  We entered Florida on January 3,2012. We had reservations a 3 Flags in Wildwood about 70 miles north of Tampa. We were crossing paths with Bob & Linda for a few days so soon as we set up we went over to say hello. We chatted & caught up with then for quite a while and made plans to play cards the next night. The next evening they called and told us their dog Blazer had passed away. What sad news. There are dogs and there are special dogs and Blazer was up at the top in the special dog category. He will  surely be missed.

  After a busy 4 months in Pa. we went into super slowdown in Wildwood. We went to the farmers market and bought some strawberries and tomatoes but not to much as we planned  on going to the Webster flea market and that's where we load up on fresh fruit & veggies and we did. We especially like Florida strawberries and we have gone through several flats. On a rainy day we went over to the Villages to see the movie War Horse which was excellent. The Villages is a huge retirement area with separate roads for golf carts, nice downtown common areas with restaurants, shops, movie theaters and nightly entertainment. After our 2 weeks were up in 3 Flags we decided to go to the Escapee park in Bushnell. It was a tough long 25 mile ride but we made it. We enjoy SKP parks as everyone is always so friendly but at Sumpter Oaks we always seem to have problems with our site and this time was no different. We had a 50amp site but the pedestal was over in the next door site so we had to use our extension which is only 30amp. Also the sewer was uphill even with us staying up on the air bags, the water pressure was low and we couldn’t get a signal with our roof top satellite dish. One big plus was our friends Cindy & Phil were there. We hadn’t seen them since we were broke down up in Dease Lake BC and is was good to catch up with them. We also sat down with a couple at the ice cream social and them or us couldn’t remember where we met until bingo up in Alaska at Denali NP at a small SKP happy hour. 2 couples at this small park who we had been with in Alaska. Wow small world. Since this was the 1st park we were in since leaving Pa. that allowed us to wash the rv and Emily was quite dirty so we made this a work week. Paula worked on the inside and I got the outside washed and waxed. Paula also went to the club house daily to chat with other ladies doing crafts and Phil taught her how to make spinners using soda cans. When our week was up we again hitched up the CRV and began our 60 mile trek over to the Orlando Thousand Trails. This is a nice spacious (for Florida) park. We enjoy this area  and will probably stop back on our way out of Florida. We went to a campground (Bee’s) up the road that has a great all you can eat fish fry. There’s also a winery (Lakeridge) that makes several wines that we love. We went there on Saturday to a festival and they were having a buy 1 case get a 2nd free and we took advantage.  There’s also a little Cuban restaurant ( El Cerro) that we love. We also drove over to a Disney Resort Port Orleans the French Quarter and then from there we took the boat down to Downtown Disney and spent the day there. Today we got our Golden Coral fix. We met up with about 50 other Escapee’s for Chapter 57’s monthly luncheon.

  It’s 6:25 PM  and 76 degrees and as I’m writing this I occasionally look out our front window and several people are out walking  and bike riding with coats & hooded sweatshirts on. Oh well they must know something we don’t know. Now for what it’s worth we’re all caught up and it’s time to get into the mind frame of those folks walking around with coats on and have a cup of green tea.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Time to catch up

  It’s been a while and I’ll probably forget a lot but here goes.

  We had stopped in Dease Lake BC and had gotten permission to stay the night. When checking the car I noticed the RV’s radiator was leaking. I went into the store and asked if the was a mechanic in town. They said Charlie could help but he was camping. Someone else said to call Turtle. We had no cell phone service, which we found out later no one had cell phone service in Dease lake, but the gal in back of the counter offered to call him. He came up and looked at it, scratched his head and said how do I get to the engine. He had never worked on a Diesel pusher and said I should call Charlie but he was camping. The next day we were sitting in the RV waiting for Charlie to return from camping when a RV pulled in front of us. It was our friends Cindy & Phil. They saw us sitting there and stopped to check on us. As we were talking Charlie pulled in. He said he had pulled many rads damaged by the poor BC roads. Cindy said she would call our daughter and let her know our situation. We said our goodbyes and followed Charlie back to his garage. We shared a 15 amp service with a gold prospector for 3 weeks while waiting for our rad to go 600 miles to the repair shop only to find out they couldn’t repair and then waiting for a new rad from Monaco in Oregon. We just wanted  to get back to the states so we made no stops except to sleep and within a few days we crossed the border into Washington state.  We settled into a campground with facilities for the 1st time in a month. The next day we decided to go south a little to hit Oregon before turning east. We were surprised how dry and desert like this part of Wash. is. We stopped in Illinois to have a brief visit with our friends Ed & Hazle. As we entered western Pa. we had to decide if we wanted to put up for a few days and wait for hurricane Irene to pass or continue to Robins driveway near Wilkes-Barre Pa. and ride out the storm there. We decide to continue on the Robins. It was good to be back in northeastern Pa. with our family. When we left in Oct. 2010 our granddaughter Amelia was only a month old and we were anxious to get to know her and also to have lots of time with our grandson Connor. It wasn’t long after we got setup when the rain started and not long after Irene passed Tropical Storm Lee came in and the rain continued and the river kept getting higher. Luckily we were pretty high up as it wasn’t long until mass evacuations began. The river crested higher than it ever had. The new dikes spared Wilkes-Barre city but the flooding in other towns was worse than 1972. While we were in Pa. we had lots of quality time with our grandkids and really got to know Amelia. We also got reinvolved with our local church.Paula helped making lasagna rollups and pumpkin rolls and pie. We helped with the trunk or treat for Halloween, the pork supper & the Christmas open house. This was also the saddest return to Pa. First my sister was diagnosed with kidney cancer and had to have it removed and then in mid Oct my mom got sick. After going with her to the ER we came home that day and for the next 2 weeks she seemed to improve. Then the pain got worse and we returned to the ER. This time they recommended Hospice for pain management & comfort.  Hospice Community Care in Wilkes-Barre was fantastic. On Nov 23 my mom had her 85th birthday. All year long she would always say she  85 and when she awoke on the 23rd she said she shook her fist in the air and said I made it. On Nov 29th her pain & suffering ended and she joined my father who had passed away 50 years ago on Oct 25th. Mom we will miss you more than you will ever know.

  We stayed in Pa. until after Christmas. Some nights I would forget to disconnect the hose and it would freeze up but other than that the motorhome handled the cold better than we did. Our 1st stop was only 80miles away. We had gotten a new car in Sept and ordered a new base plate so we could tow the car behind the rv. We had canceled several appointments to have the baseplate installed so we decided to stop on our way out of Pa. They supplied us with 30amp power and we stayed there 2 nights. With the Honda hooked on the back we made it to a Thousand Trails park in SC in 2 days and it was warm. Now we could slow down. We stayed there 3 nights and then moved to a thousand trails park in Florida.

Now to see if I can remember how to publish this