Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Love my Duct Tape

As a new RVer,  I'm learning something new almost every day.   Easier ways to do things, getting organized in the basement as well as inside.    I’m also learning about the operation of my different systems.

The other day, I learned how to deploy my awning.  I had started it (with my instruction sheet in hand), and my neighbor came over and helped/showed me how to do it.  OK, that wasn't as bad as I thought it would be.   Today, I wanted to wind it up because it was gusty, and there's no use beating it up when I knew I wouldn't be home.  So, again with my instruction sheet, I went out and was doing fine until my wind-up strap came loose. 

The strap was stitched to a rubbery length of material that went into a slot so it could slide from side to side on the rollup tube.  The stitching had frayed, a ridiculous problem, since the awning was new just before I bought my 5th wheel trailer.  We all know that duct tape cures lots of problems.  I looped the strap over the rubbery piece, duct taped it to itself and slid the rubbery piece into the slot in the windup tube. 

 Simple fix, right?   Yep, love that duct tape, I have multiple rolls of it.  Years ago, a partner and I had a class C that we used for weekend camping.  We were coming home late one night and the radiator hose blew in multiple places.  Nothing was open, deserted stretch of road.  I jokingly said that we had a brand new roll of duct tape.  Quite a while later, most of that tape was wrapped around the radiator hose and it got us home - I really should have taken pictures.  Of course, that's no fix for poor maintenance - which was a major problem with that partner........  and we won't go any further on that.

 My point today is to have all your tools together for a project.  As I was winding up the awning, I realized that I had forgotten to get out the long wand used to unroll the awning and then to roll it back up again.   It’s the first thing you use to deploy it and the last thing you use to stow it.  I stood there, realizing I would have to roll it all out again, call for help or somehow deal with it.  Luckily, I was able to climb up on the picnic table and get it rolled in the rest of the way.   I bet I’m gonna remember that wand for the next time I deal with the awning.


Sunday, November 17, 2013

Moving Right Along.......

Just about a week ago, I finally sold my car to a gentleman who had been to see it earlier in the day.  Thank goodness this guy was easy to deal with, as I’d had a man arguing with me earlier in the week about the price - he just would not go away.  Obviously he did not know me at all, because arguing made me more stubborn!  Still, I wish I had gotten more for the car, but I was glad to have that over with.

Last weekend, I had a yard sale for 2 days to empty my house of stuff I had accumulated in the past 6 years.   Thank goodness the house wasn’t any bigger and I hadn’t been there any more years!  It took me hours to set up, both the day before and starting at 4:30 that morning.  Friday was a great day and I sold some large items and got rid of a lot of small ones.  Saturday was not very busy, there were too many group sales in the area, but I still managed to get rid of lots of things. 

Saturday afternoon I spent a few hours packing things up to take to the Hospice Thrift shop where I volunteer.  I took that load over and left the rest on the porch to pack up the next day.  It took me several hours to pack up stuff the next day – plus deciding what I should just trash.  I ended up ruthlessly trashing lots of things - I’ve become hardened to it!

Obviously I slept like a rock after those long, hard days – my first nights in my 5th wheel; and it was very comfortable.  I thought I had moved everything in here prior to the sale, but all of a sudden I had piles of “last minute” items that had to be brought over – and stashed.   I have a feeling I’ll be organizing things as soon as I figure out what is convenient.

I have spent the last 3 days cleaning the house for sale.  You’d think it would be easy to clean an empty house.  All cabinets had to be wiped out.  I even did the windows!  I put up a new blind in the living room, after a trip to Lowe’s.  After a few more fixit projects, I had to clean out the fridge and freezer.  I haven’t brought over all my food yet, so I had to clean around what little was left over there. 

I met with the broker who assures me he can sell the house for a price that I can live with.  Even though I was skeptical, I signed the listing form, hoping that he sends over a great photographer to make it look wonderful.  We will see if he can do what he claims he can. 

The house is the last major obstacle to be dealt with before I can leave.  Of course, I have other things that need to be done, and I’m getting the 5th wheel trailer set up.  I ended up having to buy a propane alarm and a CO2 alarm as both of them had expired.  These alarms have a shelf life of about 5 years – what a way to insure that the company will be making money in the future!

I figure I won’t be out of here until the first of the year anyway, but even that will depend on the house being sold.   Hopefully, it will be sold to really nice people, since I do like my neighbors on each side. 


Friday, November 1, 2013

Cattitude Adjustment

My Trinidad cat is now 14 years old, feisty as ever and believes that I am here just to serve her.  For the most part, she’s been healthy and hasn’t had to see the vet much.  But when she does – watch out!   As soon as I put her in her carrier and in the car, she howls all the way to the vet – thankfully a very short trip!

Because we will be traveling in a 5th wheel, she needs to be trained to sit up in the truck with me – without the vocalization.  So I have a cage for her now instead of the carrier, maybe that will make her happier.  I’m putting her in it every day and sitting outside with her to acclimatize her to the cage and different scenery.  She doesn’t seem to mind, she’s had a strong interest in “outside” since she’s lived in a house.  She loved “outside” when we were on the boat and sat in the cockpit and watched other boats, dinghies, birds and fish in the water.

Yesterday, after sitting outside with her, I put the cage in the truck passenger seat, where she will be traveling (hopefully silent).  She didn’t seem to mind that either.  I found the seatbelt will go around the cage nicely to hold her in.  The true test will be when I start the engine – we’ll just sit there in the truck in the driveway.  After a few days of that, we’ll take a little drive around the neighborhood.  I’m hoping that this gentle, slow introduction to RVing will enable her to be a pleasant traveling companion instead of a howling monster. 

I’ll let you know how it works……

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More blogs and photos coming as I prepare and go traveling.