The temps are dropping, the park has turned off the water and the windows easily form condensation – even when only making a cup of tea! So, as we say, if we’re not hav’n fun, why do it? After our Christmas – I forgot to mention the record high temps in the 50’s – Barb & I start to seriously plan our trip south with a stop in London to have the brakes and under carriage checked for road worthiness and then onto Chanute for some major repairs to our home! We can not commit to an arrival at the Plantation until we find out how sever the repairs are at Chanute.
We wanted to see a few people before we headed south so we made arrangements for the last week to meet up with Pat & Carolyn and my brother Larry. Other friends and family in the London area is/will be arranged as we get there. We met Pat & Carolyn at a cutsie Cafe in Port Hope for lunch. It was great to see them again and to wish them well staying in a cold winter! The owners did not rush us out so it was an enjoyable time with them. We also got to walk down to the water and pier. On our way back toward Toronto, we stopped to see Larry and have dinner with him at our favorite fish and chip restaurant before we disappeared for the winter. It was a long day with lots of windshield time but well worth it.
We arrived in London on Monday afternoon and got set up at the dealership for sleeping over to be available for the first AM appointment. After checking in with them on our location etc, we went out for dinner – our fridge is bare as we can not take meat or fowl over the border so that means we have to eat out! After dinner, we visit with my other brother and his bride for the evening. Lots of chit chat to catch up on each others do’ins and then we returned to the rig to sleep – as we were to be up early for our appointment.
We met Ron and Vicki – Barb’s childhood girl friend – for breakfast while the truck is in for service. We spent a couple of hours kibitzing and carrying on as if we were in our right minds. During our fun and frivolity, we get the call from the trailer dealership that we have some issues with the brakes that need to be looked at. Looked at – crap, they need to be fixed before we carry on. What we had planned on a single day job for the brakes and shackles, turns into a major brake job on the trailer. 3 of the 6 sets were seized tight and had to be replaced – of course we all agreed that replacing everything to the back plate makes sense but holy cow what an expense before we’ve started. To save time and $$, Barb & I drive to Woodstock to pick up the 3 sets and deliver them back to the dealer in London. It was a nice day for a driving tour. After, we needed propane and treats for the repair techs so off to Costco. Now that all that ‘house keeping’ was done, time to think about dinner again so off to the Mandarin Chinese Buffet with Gerry & Ann. Now this restaurant knows how to treat seniors – they give us a discount any day you go, not a specific day that the company declares – hear that Bulk Barn? Ok, I’m off my soap box and after a nice evening and dinner, we return to the rig to sleep and be ready for them to finish the brake job on Wednesday.
After we vacate the rig and check on the repairs, we met Diane for breakfast. It was so foggy, we really didn’t expect her to meet with us but there in the gloom, we see her headlights pull up to the restaurant. We had a fun time even without John – he was in Yuma with a buddy. Well have to do that again, right Di? Thursday was Di’s birthday so we had something happy to celebrate instead of new brakes! We returned to the waiting room so I could be interviewed for compliance of a new licencing regulation that was brought into effect July 2011. I now have my certificate and card – whew, that takes a load off, how have I done this since 2000 without it??
The rig was completed by mid afternoon and we decided it was too late to head for the border. First thing Thursday AM – 9ish – we are on the 402 toward the Blue Water Bridge at Sarnia. The crossing was really good this time, the CBP agent did not board us and we were on our way in record time. Chanute, here we come with over nights planned at a Walmart just north of Indianapolis and another just outside of Kansas City! But wait, this is the US Thanksgiving so that makes tomorrow ‘Black Friday’! Not sure we want to be anywhere near a Walmart on Black Friday so we had to change our plans on the fly – ok that’s where we’ll stay, the Flying J in Indianapolis! The roads were clear with little traffic and the weather was perfect. Black Friday was very similar – we had an easy escape from Indianapolis and onto Chanute. We had planned staying overnight outside Kansas City but my navigator – the best there is – turned us south to the Lake of the Ozarks and a Walmart there. We pulled in just before 5 PM and found no large shopping crowds or heavy traffic. Another great decision by our nav!
Well, enough for now. Hope all is good where you are….