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Published: January 26th 2013
The One About Taking Delivery of my new RV
So much has happened over the past couple of days, it is all a jumble in my mind. I will try to sort it out.
I did not write about the peaceful days of Tuesday and Wednesday. I did hear from salesman Joe, who assured me we were on track for Thursday. Kathy and Ginnie and I and all four male dogs (Kathy has dachshund Oscar) spent time catching up, walking the dogs, laundry, Walmart, eating out, stuff you do when you are on a Snowbird trip.
I left Wauchula just before 8 on Thursday and followed the route Garmina set up for me, over the river and thru the woods thru small towns, orange groves, strawberry fields, and landfills. Down the road about five miles, I realized I hadn't put my step up. Frak. Fortunately there was no traffic on the road, so I just stopped on the side, slid out, put the step up, and was on my way before anyone knew it. I pulled into Lazydays just after 9:00 and started the journey.
Checked in at the yellow building, and get escorted to the Delivery Lot and pull nose in very close to my new Vista, and ended up door to door. I got plugged in, and was told to go to the business office.
Lazydays consists of 168 acres of new and used RVs, almost 200 (yes, 200) service bays. There is, a campground for normal people, a special campground for Class As costing more than $250k where you park while you are waiting your turn for service. While you wait, you go to the Crown Clubhouse where there is a gym, pool, areas for you to watch TV, eat, on and on. My site is just off that area, but I am not in it, laugh.
They really are customer oriented. Because the area is so big, they have an 8 passenger golf cart shuttle that makes a regular circuit. Any employee riding around on their mission stops to offer rides to walkers. Winston and I (dogs are allowed anywhere except the restaurant) hopped on one to the business office, spent an hour with 35 y/o Joe, from NYC, grad of Kansas State, now loving life in FL with wife and 2 babies and signed my life away. After the $$ presentation, I got the extended warranty spiel, and bought one to cover absolutely anything, except tire issues. Did you know that they sell bands that get put on the rims to prevent tires from disintegrating??? They cost $2100 for 6 tires. I declined. It is now 11:30. No food yet for the day, just 3 cups of decaf, the last being from Lazydays with fake creamer, yuck.
Then on to Insurance man, Will Steen. He gave me 3 quotes, and I was exhausted. I needed food. We hopped a ride back to the delivery campground where, at 12:30, I ate cereal with banana, and it was yummy. I called my RV insurance broker, and had her write the policy for the new rig which came between the high and low estimates given by Will.
Golf cart hitch a ride back to the business office, finished up with Will, got my broker to email documents to him. Next step, Candace, who explained the Lazydays customer care program and gave me lots of coupons.
2:30 and I am done and I can go look at my new RV. And, more importantly, start to ransfer everything. At 3:30, Jeff, head trainer, and Melanise, trainee, show up to teach me everything I needed to know about the Vista. We started on the outside investigated every nook and cranny of the exterior and went inside. Just then, a salesman, with an older couple in tow, showed up to look at Spirit. My crap is everywhere. They looked, drew me away so I could show them the service records, asked about the tires, and Jeff and Melanise drew me back to the Vista. All was fine until the hydraulic levelers. They wouldn't. Uh oh. Alarms in my head.
Jeff tried several times, and the computer screen said something like, "Fatal error, take to shop for service," except the levelers were stuck in the down position, and you cannot drive in that situation. Next, turn on the TV. Nothing, nada, zip. We come to realize that there was no power to the rig. Even though it had been plugged in for almost 24 hours, it had been running on batteries and propane. That one was easy, no power at the utility pole. Flip the breaker, nothing, nada, zip. I found one thing Lazydays does not have. RV extension cords. Fortunately the guy next to me overheard the conversation, he did have an extra cord ( I do, too, back in Wauchula), and we hooked ourselves up on his pole. RVers are wonderful. Steve, my Delivery Specialist, came over, tried the same process with the levelers, no luck. He would be back. At 5:30 when I had not heard from him, I called him, and he said he would be out at 8:30 in the morning. I told him of my class, he said lock thnrig, put the keys in the hot water heater compartment, don't worry about the dog, go to class, he would have it fixed when I returned. Uh huh.
I worked until 11:00 moving stuff. Finally at the end, I was just throwing my clothes across the space, moving it to the back of the Vista, throwing some more, until I was done at 11. Fortunately, I had made my bed early while I still had energy, and fell in. I slept like a rock until the alarm woke me at 6:30.
Turn on the furnace, heat the 59 degree rig up, to 65, which worked fine. Took a steamy shower, worked fine. The shower stall, while not smaller, has a hard door, making it seem smaller than the Spirit which had a shower curtain. I finished putting everything away, stowed as much as possible in case they had to move the Vista, I didn't want anything to fall on the floor. I put Winston in the Spirit, and hitched a ride to the training center.
My 2 hour driver confidence course, taught by Bob Bergeron, Tom's cousin, they don't speak, was awesome. I learned so much. Back to the rig, and Winston was wonderful in the Spirit. Neighbors said he did not bark at all. Wow. No serviceman. Very disappointed, I called Steve, who said he'd be right over, and then called Salesman Joe to keep him in the loop. Steve tried the levelers again, no luck, told me he would have a technician come out after lunch, 1:00. Again, I would note be here, part 2 of driving class. This time I left Winston in the Vista, I would show those lousy technicians, let them deal with Winston.
Driving Class Part 2 had 4 of us driving a 42 foot diesel pusher. We were taught how to put dots on our windows and mirrors to aid us in judging using our mirrors, and we got practice using them. The hardest part for me was getting used to the brake and gas pedal being at the same level. I kept missing the brake and hitting the steering column. But, I succeeded, got my wonderful certificate, and feel, I accomplished something.
This time I decided to wait for the shuttle, but trainer Bob picked me up and drove me back. I was heartened when I saw the door to the hydraulic mechanism open, but soon saw the levelers were still partially up/down. I called Steve, and got some sales double speak about doing on line research, he'd get back to me. Uh huh. I waited 1 hour, until 4, then called salesman Joe, almost in tears. Within 10 minutes he was at my door withs hug ready, but more sales double speak. The net nut is they don't know what's wrong, they must drain the hydraulic fluid as that is the next step the manufacturer is telling them to do, and they can't do that at my site, they must tow it to the shop. If they tow me tonight, I will be in a service bay all night where the lights never go out, so first thing tomorrow......... They feel by draining and replacing the fluid, they will be able to rebuild the pressure system, and all will work. At this very same time, the locksmith showed up to rekeying one of my locks that wasn't working. My head was splitting. I bought a cigarette from him, and felt much better.
Next, the detail people came up. They asked if all was ok, I showed them some gummy stuff, and a scrape. The gummy stuff came off easy, the scrape will need to be buffed, get Steve to write a work order and it will be done. Whew.
So, here I sit, waiting. Fortunately, there is a full roster of service men working this weekend, and I have the chief, Tom, dedicated to resolving my issue. Ginny and Kathy are managing without me, I miss them. My water is running out, I have been using it a lot. My useable food is almost gone, and salesman Joe said he would get someone to take me to the store tomorrow if I needed.
Winston really has been wonderful thru this. He has learned he can sit on the dashboard and see everything. There are nose prints all over it. Just have to hope he doesn't do that while I am driving, laugh.
I heated the last of my crockpot beef stew, ate frozen watermelon, yes, the refrigerator really does get cold, ate a bagel as I was still hungry......no lunch......and took Winston for a walk. Someone new pulled in to claim their new used RV, and I stopped to chat. What a story. On November 7 they we driving their rig to Fort Meyers down I75 when wifey smelled smoke. They pulled over; he opened the hood and saw flames. They got their dog and ran into the woods. The rig was gone to the ground in 7 minutes. While the insurance investigation is being completed, they suspect it was a ruptured gas line. Wifey said no more motor homes, but when they found this 40 foot 2003 really clean used, they jumped on it. Quite a story.
I realize I haven't told you much about my new rig. Now that most everything is put away, I will take pictures tomorrow morning and post them in a new short blog, there is terrific free wifi here, all over the complex, and I will have time while they are working on the hydraulics. I will tell you, so far I love it. It is bright and airy. I am still rearranging things. I put their bedspread and fake pillows in one of the compartments, they are just too big and bulky, and made the bed with my new sheets and old pink and green quilt. It is a foam mattress, and I slept quite well. Some of the cabinets are very tall and deep requiring the use of a step ladder, I only have a short stool. I cannot reach the interior roof vents without standing on the stool. I cannot reach the exterior hot water heater compartment, I will have to find someplace else to hide my keys.
So, my readers, please think happy thoughts for me in the morning, so I can get on the road and be back to the peaceful life of a Snowbird.
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