Week 10: Escaping a storm, new bike parts, site and videos
Week 10 started with some excitement. On Tuesday morning we woke up to news of a bad storm coming our way. They predicted 75 mph winds and golf ball sized hail. We made plans to drive south west for 102 miles to Coffee Creek RV Resort. It looked like it would be just far enough to avoid the worst of the storm. So we packed everything up in an hour and started driving. It was 95° and sunny when we arrived at 2:15 pm and set up for the night. We walked around the campground, scoped out the bath house in case we needed to run for shelter that night, and hung out with the cows, horses, and donkey that are on the adjacent property and separated by a barbed wire fence.
We liked the campground and wished that more of the amenities were open, they were closed due to Covid precautions. Coffee Creek RV Resort has cabins and RV sites for rent, a pool, hot tub, game room, exercise room, a few meeting halls, laundry room, volleyball court, playground, dog run, ladder golf, horseshoe pits, a walking trail and several bath houses. There is also a nearby fishing hole. The most important part of the park for us on this trip was that the storm missed us by about 5 miles! We got a few drops of rain and that was it.
On Wednesday morning, Drac seemed especially playful. He wanted to play fetch with his table tennis ball and Dom and I agreed that while he was all riled up, we should take the opportunity to show him that fetch can be played outside. Up until now he has only played inside the house and didn't understand that the game worked the same way outside. Our idea worked and he played fetch for about 5 minutes before getting tired and laying down. It was glorious. We've uploaded a video of Drac playing fetch here.
Also on Wednesday Dom figured out why we were having such trouble filling the fresh water tank before we left and why the tank monitor always read empty while we were filling it. We had recently read that you can leave the grey tank dump valve open while connected to full hookups and had just started trying this out. We forgot to close the valve before trying to fill the tank, rookie mistake. Such is living and learning in the full time RV life!
After work on Wednesday we packed up everything again and headed back to the DFW area. Google maps decided that it knew better than we did which route we wanted to take home and sent us unknowingly to the highway that we specifically chose to go around due to it being another high wind day. After about 10 miles we knew that we were on the wrong route and pulled off the highway to reset the map and turn on the avoid highways feature. We then headed down some back roads to get back to the preferred route. These roads were par for the course of back roads, complete with construction and huge holes. We hit one hole that was about 18 inches deep and at least 2 feet across, there was no way around it and we slowed down as much as we could before hitting it. The damage was done.
The trailer bounced like we drove over a trampoline and visions of what was happening inside the RV raced through our heads. We just knew that everything inside was going to be a mess. We finished our trip home and set the RV back in our spot. Then came the opening of the door. What we saw was actually better than expected. Many of the cabinets had open, released contents and re-closed themselves. There were glass vinegar bottles in the sink, on the floor, and spices everywhere but...nothing broke! The only bottle to lose its cap had not been opened yet so no spill, no bottles or food containers broke, and pickup was pretty easy. Then we got to the outdoor kitchen.
The outdoor kitchen was a slightly different story, the fridge is not an RV fridge. It doesn't lock shut so the door had opened and 3 half gallons of milk, 2 half gallons of orange juice, and packaged meat was everywhere, the Instapot had been jostled and kicked a small propane container out of the cabinet which fell in the sink and magically didn't explode. We learned a lot of lessons on this trip. This is the time for those lessons to be learned, before we are travelling every two weeks to new places. This is one of the reasons that we wanted to live and travel close for a few months while we settle in before officially hitting the road.
Thursday we washed our bikes in preparation for some new parts coming in. We each purchased new Crank Brothers Mallet pedals as our cleats are worn out completely right now and we wanted to try a different style of pedal now that we are more comfortable with the clipless set up. Dom got new shoes and new hand grips. He also wanted to install an oval chain ring that he bought a while back and hadn't put on yet.
Friday was another big first, we colored my hair in the RV. It was an adventure since the space is tight, we don't have a seat with a mirror in front like our old bathroom and we weren't sure if 6 gallons of hot water would be enough to wash out all the extra color. We are experts by now though since we've been coloring my hair together for almost 8 years and we worked around the small space and limited resources and got it done! I'll be posting a video in the future of how we went about it for anyone interested in just how this all went down along with some tips and tricks I've learned along the way for application and clean up.
Also on Friday we received a phone call that Dom's grandfather was not feeling well and showing symptoms of Covid-19. They ran a test and gave him medications to help him feel more comfortable. It would be a few days before the results would come back. We discussed whether it would be a good idea or not to travel 2,000 miles in case this didn't end with his recovery. Ultimately, the decision was out of our hands. RV parks in the area were still closed for the season and even when they did open, they were not accepting out of state reservations. Even if we flew there, we would not be allowed inside to see him, we would not be allowed to be around anyone due to 14 day quarantine requirements and many businesses we may need to frequent due to short term living there without the ability to bring supplies were closed. We just had to stay put and do what we could from here.
On Saturday a bigger and nicer site opened up where we are staying and so we packed up our home for the third time in as many weeks and moved over there! It was a great decision. This site is farther from the road, has a large side yard and a big field behind us. Drac loves playing fetch in the side yard and we enjoy being able to set out our chairs and have some space to relax. In the afternoon we installed the new bike parts that had arrived on Thursday.
We received an update on Dom's grandfather that his fever broke and he was feeling a little better. We were overjoyed. We felt slightly better about not being able to be there with him and hoped for the best.
Sunday morning we filmed a bike check, look for the video coming out soon. We went over all of the parts that we have swapped out since we bought our bikes on Memorial Day Weekend 2018. Then we went for a ride at a local trail to test out our new parts. The pedals and cleats worked great, a little too great on the left foot which gave us trouble getting the cleat to release on demand. We rode the whole trail which was 9.85 miles. It was a hot and humid day which made the ride a bit more difficult but we just looked at it as endurance training.
While on the trail we received another phone call about Dom's grandfather. His fever was back and his symptoms were getting worse. His test came back positive for Covid-19. We discussed what may happen, what treatment options were available where he was located and at what point they may move him to a hospital. It was a rough call. Again all we could do was wait to see what would happen.