Sunday, March 29, 2009


I cannot help but equate this weather thing to the phenomenon that happens after the female of the human species gives birth to her off spring. Even though she has been in agony for hours and hours, the moment they lay the infant across her chest, the pain is forgotten. I believe if this didn’t happen, there would never be more than one child in every family! The extreme weather (torrential rain, thunder and lightning) we have experienced on the way to, and since arriving (more heavy rain and 30-40 mph wind) in Mansfield, Texas is only a faint memory as I look out the window this morning at the stillness and the sunshine. It is only 40’f but it is going to be a beautiful day!

As Phil suspected, our Penny the Pace needed a new alternator. By virtue of pure “dumb luck”, he found an excellent garage; a family owned business for 37 years called Dennis’s Quick Auto and Tire that was proficient and professional. They were also half the price of the first alternator we replaced in Oklahoma City, OK in 2005 on our first trip after retirement. She also received a lube, oil and filter and they checked all her belts and hoses and she ran perfectly from Snyder to Manchester, TX. We did have one scare when Phil applied the brakes coming up to an intersection and we started to slide. One car nearly turned left in front of us but stopped in time as we ran the red light. The roads had become very slick from the rain and it was a very near miss but no crash and no ticket so all is well.

Because of the volume, rainwater found ways to get inside our Penny around the slide as we drove down the road and we had to set up heaters and fans to dry her out after we parked. Phil says he has to investigate and do some more caulking when the weather improves and we are thoroughly dried out. There are no leaks unless the wind blows really hard or as we learned, when we are rolling along in a storm so it may be hard to find and stop them but never fear, Phil has a plan!

We will be visiting family in the area and doing our best to take in some interesting sights that I will report on as time goes by. We spent several very stimulating hours yesterday morning going over our maps and websites tentatively planning our route for the next couple weeks (about as far in advance as we like to go). Phil uses Microsoft Streets and Trips on our computers to determine mileage (we try not to drive more than 250 miles in any one travel day and we only have one “travel day” each week.) I have a “wish list” for places to go, people to visit and things to see in each state and we do our best to arrange the route to within 100 miles of these places. We also research public and camping club RV parks, terrain (as you might remember, I do not do mountains in Penny the Pace) and double check my “Life list of things to do before I die” or as many now are calling it, the “Bucket List” and try to include those stops along our path. Stay tuned … there are lots of fun things to look forward to as we continue our adventure!
Update on temperature: At 11:05 am CDT, it is now 65 degrees~ ~yes!
Until next time,


  1. As always I enjoyed your trip along with you. Love the pictures. Glad that the alternator was an "easy fix"---I know that sometimes it can take days and days to git 'er done!

  2. We sure do know Texas ain't all flat prairie! We stayed in several parts of Texas and really enjoyed the Hill Country and many of the lakes.

    Thanks for sharing Audie Murphy's memorial with us. We remember him from (how many?) years ago!

  3. One travel day a week and only a couple hundred miles: that's a great recipe! I hope maybe we can learn to do that. We recently moved out west so we can see the west without lots of travel. We used to live in Florida so visiting, say California, included 4,500 miles of to-and-fro. Haven't ever done a month long trip that was less than 4,000 miles. See, we have a LOT to learn! Nice blog; found you because of Nick's blog.