Sunday, November 20, 2011

Getting Ready to Go

Yesterday morning was drizzly and C-O-L-D (at least for Floridians).  We waited until afternoon to work in the 'yard' vacuuming the basement and washing chairs, the bird seeder, the rug and the grill.  We put them in the sun to dry while we had a little lunch.

After lunch I wanted to take a few photos of the solution to our sewer hose dilemma.  When we arrived in April, it was a long way from the valve to the sewer outlet.  And it went uphill.  We used our little accordion hose holder, but the weight of the grey water kept forcing the hose off the holder.  Anyway, when Ron arrived he saw the problem and solved it like this:

Yes, those are rocks near the outlet as the holder is too short to make it to the top of the outlet.  This ingenious idea is a 4 inch PVC pipe cut in half lengthwise and hollowed out on the end like so:

This allows the pipe to get right up to the elbow.  So at our daughter's house, we will use our son-in-law's saw to do just this.  But how to fit it into the Jeep?  Cut the halves in half again.  Then they will fit in our coach easier and we can use up to four pieces if needed.  Brilliant!

We were wet and muddy, and it was time to head inside to make dinner for Ron and Donna tonight.  I chose a crockpot meal recipe, but didn't know it used the crockpot until I read the whole recipe.  It was 4:30, but if I put it on high, it would be ready by 6:30 or so.  No problem.  I threw all kinds of stuff in the pot, boiled some angel hair and ta-da, dinner was ready. 

After dinner we talked about gate guarding again, weighing the pros and cons.  Personally I am looking forward to doing whatever I want whenever I want for weeks.  Donna is scared of the snakes, and Gary is a little wary of 'travelling Mexicans'.  Ron is fine with it.  Donna and Ron have done this before filling in for a couple who had cancelled last minute.  Our hesitation is of course Gary's treatments.  We don't know if he will still be having them, and if he is, a center will be far away from where we will be parked.  We don't even know where we will be parked at this point, and won't know until we are ready to start work in March.  Then we will be assigned a gate, and probably not with Ron and Donna.  But hopefully we could be.  Even if we are, we will probably be a few miles apart.  We'll keep you posted.  Right now we need to fill in the application, take tests and get finger printed.

Friday was treatment day, so we went through that.  It was a long morning waiting though so we didn't get out until noon.  We found out that our Physician's Assistant, Sonya, had been the greeter belle at Dixie Stampede for years.  We're glad she decided to go into medicine - she's a sweetheart here, too.  We stopped at Walmart to drop off prescriptions and pick up some more phone minutes.  Although we'd like smart phones, we opted for Tracfones.  You buy the phone with double the minutes for life for $30, and purchase minutes when you need them.  This works out to about $40 per month for 400 minutes and lasts about a month depending on how many people I talk to.  We have internet and text available on the phone if we need it, but that uses up more minutes .  For as long as we've been on the east coast, we've never had no signal, but I'm sure that will change once we head out west.  So far, so good.

Saturday was a work day for me at the office, and six people came in - two couples for a tent site!  Brrrrr - too cold for me!  Gary did some more work on the coach, checking fluids and batteries, etc.  We are checking our departure list daily to make sure we will be ready to go.  Five o'clock came around finally, and I locked up and headed home.  The CG owner assured me that I'd have a job next year if we chose to come back.  Nice to know that I can use her as a reference.  We had a little dinner and tried to make some more plans in pencil, then headed to bed.

Sunday we woke up and wanted Cracker Barrel for breakfast.  It's down the parkway some, right next to Krispy Kreme Donuts - and the HOT NOW sign was lit!  First time we've ever seen it lit up!  Did we want donuts before breakfast??  Noooo.  I might as well have just smeared them on my hips.    Cracker Barrel was delicious and we did some Christmas shopping, too!

Since that put us in the shopping mood (much to the chagrin of the boys) Gatlinburg was our next stop.  We enjoy parking in the Welcome Center and having the Trolley drive us into the center of town.  We walked on the far side of the street and the arts and crafts stores had some delectable items.  A little more shopping done, we decided we needed a cheap lunch at McDonald's.  The McChicken sandwich for $1 is plenty big and just the right price.  The boys did a lot of sitting on benches as we walked around and around looking and buying. 

As soon as we got home, we put away our new purchases and our neighbor, Kelly, came over to ask if we were ready to have our fingerprints done for our gate guarding job.  Kelly is a retired Police Detective from California and offered to help.  It was fun and very messy, and we appreciate Kelly's expertise enormously. 

After a quick dinner we are going to see Country Tonight's Christmas show.  We'll let you know how that was tomorrow.  

Another great day in the Smokies.  We will really miss those beautiful mountains, but look forward to some bigger ones!   Thanks for visiting!


  1. glad to see all is well..I've been busy catching up on my travels!!!

  2. Looks like you will be 'On The Road' real soon. I have so enjoyed your time in The Smokey Mountains;o)) Bill and I really want to get back and do many things you've written about.

    Safe Travels and Happy Trails........