Our Vagabond Life

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June 14th 2020
Published: June 15th 2020
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Yesireebob! We are definitely a vagabond couple. No house, no job, NOTHING! But, actually we are blessed because we have our family. They have taken us in and made us feel welcome and comfortable. We have a roof over our heads and food to eat. What more could we ask?

Confused? Not up to date? Okay...let’s back up a bit. Dig out those dusty time machines and settle yourselves back into them. Set the time to the end of May, at Tropical Palms, when we were getting ready to leave our winter home and head North. Boy, that seems so long ago! I even have to refresh my memory by retracing my steps through my photos. Thank, God, I take zillions.

While prepping our RV for our departure, somehow I managed to cause our big, front windshield screen (the black screen one) to unroll completely. Rats! Pressing the rewind button did NOTHING! We could manually roll it up but once up, it wouldn’t come back down. Rats! We called Tom, the serviceman, who came out and did the pricey assessment and had us order a new motor. Ok...done! Just to sit back and wait now. Tiffin sent the motor and we figured we would be back in business! WRONG! Tom told us the wrong part number so we received the wrong motor. Back to step one: return the wrong one and order the right one. Only problem now....our time at Tropical Palms was running out (or so we thought....read more later)so Cory had the new motor sent to our polebarn in NY. We would worry about getting it installed in the fall. The temporary twist tie on the rolled up screen would suffice. No big deal.

While licking our wounds, our dear friend, Melba, brought us another Puerto Rican delicacy. It is called Mofongo. Made with plantains and other ingredients and offered with chicken broth. I like trying new dishes but my taste buds don’t always seem to respond as heartily. I wonder if that is how Melba reacts to some of my concoctions?

We had a visitor one day. Usually Cory is scooting the squirrels away. This time a small raccoon came onto our patio. A couple shrieks by me and it was high in a neighboring tree. Stay there, Ricky!

Cory’s siblings have enjoyed visiting with each other on a weekly basis by using Zoom. It is wonderful that his brothers and sisters can connect with him in Florida from their homes in California, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Brilliant! The age of technology.

Of course, you already know the big palooza that happened as we attempted to leave Tropical Palms. We aren’t going to hang that dirty laundry out to dry again. If you missed it, just read our last blog for all the unsettling details....titled “Scrubbed!” I’m assuming you all are acquainted with the “previous entry” (top, left of the front page on each blog) that you can click on to return and review any of our 561 blogs! Right? Quiet reading on those boring days.

Okay....now you should be all caught up with the events leading up to our stalled exodus from TP. After the air bag vent valve (or whatever it is called) came in...exactly one week as the service company had told us, Jason (repairman) returned and installed it. The sky was overcast and threatening. He crawled under the RV to perform his magic.....and at the same time: the clouds opened up and torrential rains poured down. Unbelievable! He worked away as the storm persisted to super-soak everything. Much more than just raining cats and dogs....we are taking cows and horses! It was awful. But, he got the job done and our RV was fixed! Hallelujah! Now we were back in business....but still sticking with Plan D: driving back North in our car and leaving our RV here on site at Tropical Palms.

Fortunately, during this entire waiting-game “time frame”, our good friend Art would come up and share morning coffee with us. He helped us to maintain some semblance to our muddled lives.

The morning before our second planned departure on June 7th, Art came up as Cory drove our RV on a test drive around the park and to get propane in it (we use propane in our stove and furnace....when not using electric). I rode in Art’s golf cart with him as he followed behind our RV. Propane fill-up went fine....actually didn’t really need much. But, pew....the whiff of the gas odor was strong as it permeated my nasal passage. Cory drove our RV around the loop a couple times like he was the lead wagon master in a circling covered wagon train. On a couple stretches, he laid on the pedal to get the juices flowing through the diesel engine.....Varoom!! Art sped up his golf cart to chase behind so I could hang out of his cart and listen for any untoward and unwanted noises coming from our RV. Nope....all seemed okay....it sounded normal: loud and noisy!

Art drove to our site while Cory drove back through the roadways to return to our homestead location. Art got out to guide Cory into our site. Thank, God.....I was feeling woozy and dizzy and kind of nauseous. Was it from the gas fumes? Hmmmm. I weakly slumped in Art’s golf cart waiting for the positioning process to end. Of course, some rain started to fall to contribute more anguish to all this activity. Why not?! Feeling kind of ill (aka: near death status), I was glad when I could go inside our RV and flop on the couch. Aaaah. It wasn’t until evening that I figured out my affliction. I had forgotten to take my morning medications (B/P meds). Add that to the propane and diesel fumes and now you can see why I was close to picking out my “box.” I was much more than quanked.

Okey Dokey. We are all set. RV is in position; all closed up and just waiting for us to kiss it goodbye. We decided to put one of our bedroom slides out a bit just to give us a little maneuvering space around the bed for the night. Extend button pushed: NOTHING! Yep....sound familiar? Nothing happened. Nothing moved. Nothing was heard! Rats! Oh, God! It’s Saturday so forget about calling the Tiffin Help Line. Cory tried to reach the fuses which are located in our closet squeezed behind the slide that won’t go out. He needs his sister Gwen’s delicate, long fingers to reach & fiddle with the fuses. With great determination and strength of will, he managed to change the fuse. NOTHING! Rats! He does everything he can think to do. NOTHING! But wait.....there’s one thing we haven’t tried! “Who you gonna call?”......Call Art! Of course, he was right there as soon as our Help Flag went up. What a wonderful guy. I hope you all have an “Art” in your life. He makes such a positive addition. He checked all the electronics that go with the slide system. They all tested fine. That sounds good but it’s not.....means we probably need a new motor in the slide. Rats! Well, what to do now? Our decision: NOTHING. That’s right. We decided not to do anything about it for now and work on getting it fixed in the fall when we return. Fortunately, the slide was in the “in” (retract) position. That’s how it has to be when we have the RV closed up for departure or storage. We slept soundly in our tightly walled claustrophobic confines.

June 7th. Moving Out Day. Art came up to bid us adieu. Of course, light rain sprinkled down upon us. It covered up my tears as we wished he and Donna well and thanked him for all his help for the millionth time. Bye RV. Bye Art. See you both in October. And then... we were off in our little black buggy that was packed to the brim: front to back, side to side. Lulu was sitting right in the middle of us on the console. She had “stuff” packed around her because of our close quarters but as usual, she never complained. God love her! She wanted front row seating in order to view our new GPS we bought specific for our RV. It set on our dash like a small TV. We were heading to various destinations that we had not originally put into Plan A. Remember, we are working with Plan D now.

The ride was relaxing as Cory drove along the familiar roads we had so often taken over these past 8 months. Nooooooo. Nooooooo. That didn’t take long. End the relaxation. Cory was now fighting torrential rains pouring down on us like gushers. We were in a monsoon! The wipers beat as fast as hummingbirds’ wings and still, the visibility was zero! Horrible. He kept driving along with the other crazy drivers.....our flashers on to warn them where we were on the road. I doubt they could see us any better than we could see them. Lulu kept her eyes closed. She couldn’t take it. She was struggling. She did talk about a recent guy she met...trying to take her mind off the storm. You can decide if you think he’s “the one” for her. For us, the jury is still out.

Hours and hours and hours, Cory navigated us through this inclement weather. No....wait a minute....I forgot. We did make one stop. That occurred when the light on the car dashboard lite up announcing “low tire pressure”. Yep! What more can happen? We aren’t even in our RV! Cory couldn’t sense a problem with the steering but he knew he had to check it out. As the rain doused him as in a dunk tank, he flailed around outside our car checking the tire pressure and putting air in each tire. Lulu screamed when he finally got back in the car....she thought he was a drowned rat! She is afraid of rodents. It was not pretty. He was whipped and wet! Soaked to the skin. We kept going. Eventually, once we had driven above Brunswick, Georgia, the torrents lessened to just a normal downpour. Had we been in our RV, we would not have been able to drive through this typhoon. With Plan D, we were able to keep going....slowly. The next day, the clouds hung heavy in the sky but held onto their precipitation. Whew! One day of agony and anguish was enough. Our journey through North Carolina took us over to Hickory to see our wonderful grandson, Fox. We hadn’t seen him for a very long time so it was so special to be with him again ....even if it was briefly. Lulu was ecstatic seeing him. He has a fondness for her. She loves him as we all do.

And on the third day, we arrived in New York. Hooray! We made our way to Campbell, NY....to our son, Cory’s house. Remember, this is the same house we couldn’t get into at Christmas time (bad snow) and had to go get Cory’s truck to get here.....’member? Well, even in good weather, it’s a challenge. It is out in no-man’s land on top of a massive mountain. Beautiful house with a beautiful view but.......well, we are very grateful to be here and able to stay in his lovely home. It is wonderful being with Cory again.

We left his house the next day and headed to our only “sticks & bones” building that we own: Cory’s polebarn. Here we were; back in Shongo, NY. Everything was fine except our golf cart wouldn’t start. Where’s Art? It seemed strange to look over at our old house and watch as it’s new family worked around it, painting the porch and weeding the flowers. The husband was mowing the grass. We liked that it wasn’t us having to do all that strenuous labor.

We headed into Wellsville and met our wonderful grandson, Ryan. We had a nice lunch together in the outside eating area at a local restaurant. He announced that we are going to be great-grandparents in October. He and his girlfriend, Amber, are having a baby. What a happy surprise! But, boy....now we really are starting to think we are truly “over the hill” ....over the hill, down the valley and back “over the hill” again! Just call us “those old folks: great-granny and great-grampy.” We do like the “great” part! Great!

We left and drove to our daughter, Lory’s house, outside of Wellsville. Here we would stay for the next several days. I had my dermatologist appointment the following day, having a couple spots zapped.....my norm. It was wonderful being with our Knapp family and then, to top it off, our son, Tim, his girlfriend Sarah and our grandson, Conner came down and joined the flock.

And today, we are back on the mountain side at Cory’s house. Next weekend, will take us up Rochester way to our daughter, Kim’s house. She’s hosting a Father’s Day celebration for our entire family. Life is good. We are relaxing and enjoying being with our family again. I think Plan D is going to work out just fine. Thank you, children!

We still have more routine doctor and dentist visits. We shall rotate between their homes to be at the closest proximity for these appointments. Plus, that way, we won’t overstay our visits, hopefully. Who would have thought we would be moving back in with our kids? It’s usually the other way around. You just never know. Plan D.

We hope you all can enjoy your summer....even with some restrictions still in place because of the virus. New York is slower in opening than Florida but we don’t feel that we have struggled too much .....yet. Who knows what lies ahead? Don’t put your blog book away.....

We may not be in contact as often. You are entitled to a vacation. But, if something is worthy of being blog material, we’ll be back. Until that happens....stay well, stay safe and stay with us. 21 photos!

Additional photos below
Photos: 21, Displayed: 21


Sandy, Cory, Jay, Lory, Tim, ConnerSandy, Cory, Jay, Lory, Tim, Conner
Sandy, Cory, Jay, Lory, Tim, Conner

Lory, Sarah, Tim, Conner, Jay

15th June 2020
View from Cory’s deck- Cory (Dad) mowing his grass

Mowing memories...
Cory, the picture of you mowing reminds me of the many times when I was a life guard at the Smethport pool and I would see you mowing that very steep front yard of the home you grew up in (across the street from the pool). What a feat to keep the mower from tipping over! Looks a little less daunting at your son's place.
15th June 2020
View from Cory’s deck- Cory (Dad) mowing his grass

Belated Happy Birthday friend. Mowing son’s lawn and puttering around like handyman. Always great to hear from you. Send email
15th June 2020

love it
I always love and have fun with your blogs.
15th June 2020

love it
I always love and have fun with your blogs.
15th June 2020

Thank you, Mel
We miss you. Where are you now? Did they take your trailer. How are you? ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

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