We headed out on Wednesday morning right on schedule with no more than a minor problem with the car charger which won’t affect us as long as we make sure to run the car every few hours just to keep the battery charged. We’ll get it resolved one of these days.
We spent our first night on the road in Victoria Texas at a nice campground that has changed names a few times since we were last there. The QRV Campground was a perfect spot to spend our first night following a relatively short drive of about four hours. That short drive will be a recurring theme for us as we plan to drive for shorter amounts of time and spend more nights at many of our stops this year.
On Thursday we arrived on Galveston Island for a three night stay. Once we were settled in we enjoyed a walk along the beach before heading out to celebrate Claudia’s birthday at Miller’s Seawall Grill where we enjoyed a dinner of fish and shrimp along with some refreshing beverages. It was a great feeling to be dining out again while being back on the road.
We started yesterday off with a trip to Galveston Island State Park where we enjoyed a few miles of hiking through wetlands occupied by many coastal birds. The ocean side of the park was closed for renovations so we were limited to where we could hike but we enjoyed the wetlands along with a picnic lunch in a beautiful setting on a gorgeous day. Not going to complain.
Next we returned to the motor home where we relaxed and enjoyed a happy hour outdoors. We followed that up with another walk on the beach before heading off to Pleasure Pier. Pleasure Pier’s attractions include amusement rides, midway games, retail shops and of course many food venues. While there we also watched pelicans and dolphins from the end of the pier. After enjoying a walk along the pier we stopped at Bubba Gump’s for dinner before returning to our campsite.
Today we’ll spend the day relaxing closer to our campsite and get a few chores done. Tomorrow we’ll head off early to board the Galveston-Port Bolivar ferry which will take us from Galveston Island north to the Bolivar Peninsula. From there we’ll be making three overnight stops as we travel north and east through Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama until we arrive in Stone Mountain Georgia for a visit with a good friend and to enjoy a bit of sightseeing and hiking.
Thursday, 5/20/2021 – We’re so glad to be done with the one night campsites for a while. We made the choice early on that if we needed to just put miles behind us we preferred the shorter days with one night layovers over the long distance drives so I’m not complaining. It’s always nice to have those stretches behind us though.
On Sunday we began the day early in order to beat some thunderstorms that were moving towards us. We took the Galveston-Port Bolivar ferry as planned. We arrived to find we had a very short wait and got on the next ferry to leave. The weather was nice and the water was calm so it was an enjoyable 20 minute trip. It’s a great way to bypass Houston for sure. The weather deteriorated over the next few hours however and the traffic was bad in a few places so the drive didn’t stay so enjoyable. To top things off our wipers once again crossed and became inoperable during a torrential downpour. Fortunately the downpour was short lived and we were able to take the next exit to make temporary repairs. We thought our RV service facility had resolved this issue once and for all this past year but I guess not. As in the past we removed the passenger side wiper and now have a usable wiper on the driver side.
That night we camped at Frog City RV Resort in Duson, Louisiana, one of our favorite overnight stops. We had struggled in the past to find a decent overnight stop along I-10 in Louisiana with good electricity and sewer before finally finding Frog City a few years ago. After a stressful day on the road we decided on Domino’s delivery for dinner. A good idea!!
On Monday we both awoke at about 6am and decided to take a peek at the weather forecast. It didn’t look pretty. A large band of thunderstorms were heading our way with possibilities of hail and tornados. After Claudia’s suggestion we began preparing for the road and at 7:12am we headed east, ahead of the storms in what was probably our earliest departure ever. Although we did hit rain in spots, some of it heavy we definitely missed the severe stuff that followed behind us for a while. We arrived at our overnight campground in Theodore, Alabama just after noon with the sun peeking out and a lovely day.
Tuesday was the kind of day when travelling is so much fun. We had beautiful weather, stopped twice at rest areas just to chill and enjoy a walk and to eat some lunch. Total driving time was only three hours so we arrived at our campground in Montgomery, Alabama nice and early. This gave Claudia a chance to head off for some shopping while I took my time cleaning the windshield and puttering around doing RV chores. Once Claudia returned we pulled out our chairs and enjoyed a nice happy hour together outside to enjoy some of the beautiful weather.
Yesterday we hit the road by 9am and began our trip to our campground here in Stone Mountain, Georgia. It was another nice easy trip and with the time change we were settled in by 3pm. It took a bit longer to set things up since the site was quite uneven and it took some work to level off. We began our two night stay by heading off to the Marker 7 Coastal Grill in Athens, Georgia, about an hour away to meet up with a friend of ours who we hadn’t seen in a couple of years. We had such a good time visiting. She’s the daughter of some great friends and we only wish they could have joined us. Due to Covid regulations and the fact that they live in Canada they have been unable to visit their daughter who studies in Georgia for over a year now.
This morning we started off early to enjoy Stone Mountain Park. We were disappointed to learn that parts of the park were closed on weekdays until Memorial Day weekend. Nevertheless we did take the gondola to the top of the mountain for some great views. We would have enjoyed the climb but due to a minor groin injury that I received in Galveston and the fact that it can be quite a climb at places, we decided the gondola was the smartest decision. Following the gondola trip we headed off to Historic Square where we toured many old structures that were brought in from around the state and displayed some great examples of early American life.
Tomorrow we head off to a camping resort in Leesville, South Carolina for a few days of down time. We’ve been there before and with great weather forecasted we expect to spend a lot of time by the pool. It’s the perfect place and time to relax, read a book and do some swimming.
Monday, 5/24/2021 – We spent this past weekend relaxing at a camping resort in South Carolina we had been to twice before. The first time was about 12 years ago and the last time was when we first headed out on the road full time 8 years ago. Although it’s still a fairly nice resort, it’s lost some of its friendliness and charm. With the exception of one other visiting couple who we hope to see at Sandpipers one of these days, we really weren’t welcomed by any of the members. We enjoyed sitting by the pool and we did have some beautiful weather so we’re still glad we stopped but we probably won’t be returning.
We hit the road first thing this morning and arrived at our campsite at Apache Campground & Pier in Myrtle Beach, SC just after noon. We have a lovely site right next to a gorgeous beach. We have a beautiful weather forecast for while we’re here so we’ll be spending the next few days relaxing on the beach, enjoying the boardwalk and spending time with a childhood friend of mine who I haven’t seen since we hit the road. It should fun.
In 4 more days we’ll be arriving at a campground in New Bern, NC. We’ve been waiting for this stop since hitting the road. Our daughter, her husband and three of our grandkids will be arriving that afternoon for eight nights to stay in a cabin in that same campground. It’s been over a year and a half since we’ve seen them so to say we’re excited is an understatement.
Thanks for checking in with us. We’ll post again from New Bern!!
Wednesday, 6/2/2021 – We began our stay at Myrtle Beach by taking a nice walk along the beach followed by a trip out to the end of Apache Pier, right here at the campground. It’s a long pier at 1,206 feet with an observation deck at the end and some beautiful views. It was loaded with people fishing along both sides. The beach is gorgeous with soft white sand and we’re anxious to spend some time on it.
We spent our first full day by taking a road trip about an hour north of us to visit my longtime childhood friend Paul and his girlfriend. We really enjoyed the day catching up on about ten years of news. As always it felt like no time had passed since we last saw each other. They treated us to a great seafood lunch and have expressed interest in visiting us in Texas. We promised to not let another ten years go by before our next visit.
On Wednesday we started out with a walk down the beach to the restaurant on the pier. Once there we sat at an outdoor table overlooking the ocean and enjoyed some coffee and a great breakfast. What a lovely way to start a day. After that we headed down to the boardwalk about six miles away in downtown Myrtle Beach for a couple of hours. It was a typical boardwalk with lots of shops and kids activities so before too long we were back at our campground. Once we were back we spent the best part of the afternoon sitting on the beach on our beach chairs and with our umbrella just relaxing and enjoying a beautiful view on a gorgeous day. After dinner we took a nice long walk along the beach.
Thursday was our down day and a day to relax before hitting the road. Other than a trip to pick up some groceries we enjoyed it by spending more time on the beach and having lunch on the pier.
We headed off early on Friday and arrived at our campground in New Bern, NC shortly after noon. Once we had settled in we headed over to the cabin where our daughter, her husband and three of our grandkids would be arriving. Once they did, there was lots of long overdue hugging and a day we won’t forget.
The next few days were spent playing, swimming and eating together. Both Claudia and I had plenty of one on one time with each of the kids and thankfully I was able to spend some time with my daughter too. Jon had expressed some interest in playing the guitar so I gave him a lesson using my old electric guitar while I used my acoustic. He really did well and remembered the three chords I taught him quickly. Needless to say he was very excited when I told him he could keep the electric guitar as a birthday gift. We’ve been practicing together each day since. Grace has been attached to my side whenever she can be. She’ll be in my lap whenever possible and is just the best snuggler. She’s getting big though so those moments won’t last much longer. In the meantime I’ll enjoy every one of them. Thomas is the youngest at almost six years old and has more energy than the rest of us combined. He’s just the sweetest kid though and loves to be with us, especially Grammy, who just can’t resist rubbing his head. We still have a few days together and tomorrow we’re having a sleep over. The three kids will join us for dinner and then spend the night in the RV while Melissa and Josh take the night off. They’ll probably head out to dinner before returning to begin packing up in peace and quiet. The week is going by so fast but we’ll be visiting them again in August on our way back to Texas.
On Saturday we return to the road for a week in Virginia Beach. It’s been a nice relaxing trip so far and hopefully is remains that way. Claudia planned the itinerary this year and she did a great job.
We’ll see you again soon!! Safe travels to our friends on the road!!
Wednesday, 6/9/2021 – As planned we hosted a sleepover with our three grandchildren last Friday night while our daughter Melissa and her husband enjoyed a date night. We shared a dinner of grilled cheese, ham & tomato sandwiches along with mac & cheese just as the kids had requested. Then it was time for a movie as we all sat around and enjoyed Ice Age. If the kids had seen it before they didn’t remember it and we all found it entertaining. Lowering the bunk, inflating the mattresses and calling it a night was an adventure all its own. The entire evening was a great way to wrap up a very special reunion.
On Saturday morning the kids arrived at our site early to help us prepare the motor home. The highlight for the kids of course was watching the hose as I dumped our black and grey water tanks. They also enjoyed standing in the middle of the RV as we brought in our slides. Following our hugs and goodbyes we headed off early in order to get to our campground at Virginia Beach. Once settled in there we enjoyed ourselves by relaxing at the campsite. It seemed very quiet after the previous week.
On Sunday we took a drive over to the area near the Little Creek Naval Base. The base was off limits but we managed to find a marina across the cove from my old naval unit where I was able to view it and take some pictures. The unit remains today but it has changed completely. The dozen or so quonset huts have been replaced by a single brick building and only one LCM8, the kind of landing craft I used to be assigned to was visible. There used to be as many as 20 there at any given time with another dozen or so deployed overseas. I’ve been working on getting a tour of my old unit but it doesn’t look promising.
For the past couple of days we’ve been typical tourists. We visited the Virginia Beach Aquarium and spent some time on the beach down along the boardwalk. They have a beautiful boardwalk here for walking right along the beach as well as a designated bike path right alongside. We did attempt to rent a bike but they didn’t have any available so we’ll try again earlier in the day before the week it over.
It’s been a relaxing week so far with the weather being much nicer than the forecasts. It seems every day has a forecast of heavy passing showers but we’ve seen very little rain so far.
We head back on the road on Saturday. We’ll begin out trek up the coast by crossing the 17 mile Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel. I’ve crossed this bridge many times but the last time was over 40 years ago and not in a motor home. This should be fun.
Thursday, 6/24/2021 – It sure has been a busy couple of weeks. We did head out as planned on Saturday, June 12th from Virginia Beach. We crossed the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel on a drizzly overcast day. The crossing was uneventful but it sure was easier when I used to cross it by car rather than by motor home. The lanes were much narrower than I remember, especially in the tunnels with traffic coming towards you. The semi-trucks and campers coming towards you is nerve wracking enough but the scariest site is a rental camper coming towards you when the driver doesn’t always know where the center line is.
We spent that night in a campground in Delaware before heading off to the Pocono’s in Pennsylvania. There we spent two nights at a nice but hilly campground. We enjoyed a couple of meals out and a bit of hiking before beginning the final leg of our trip to Massachusetts.
The plan was to spend a week at a campground at Lake George, New York for a week. We arrived at the campground but for the first time in eight years on the road, we were unable to park on a site where we were able to be level. The only time we did end up level, our rear tires were off the ground and the site was so uneven that I worried about our hydraulic jacks. After two hours of trying and being unable to find another site, we contacted my sister in Massachusetts to see if we could arrive a week early. After a “no problem” from them we continued our journey. By the time we arrived at “Camp Sawash”, the home of my sister and her family, we had been on the road for almost 12 hours.
Once there we were able to relax and enjoy the company of family. Among other activities we enjoyed a birthday party with all of my sister’s family and we headed off for a night out for some dining and live music. We also spent this past Sunday enjoying Father’s Day with my sister’s entire family as well as two of our own kids and their families including six of our grandchildren. It was wonderful day and so good to hug everyone again.
Unfortunately, on Sunday night I made a disappointing discovery. For those of you who have followed our posts over the years you may remember that we’ve had cable issues with one of our slides in the past. So yes, for the third time now one of the cables required to bring our long slide in has frayed and is no longer usable. This means that once we do bring the slide back in it cannot go back out until it is repaired. This reduces the size of our living area considerably and eliminates access to some critical storage areas such as our bureau drawers. I’ve contacted every RV Repair Service company in the area and we are not feeling optimistic. Only one has given us any hope at all so we’re anxiously waiting to hear from him. We should know by the end of the week.
Now it’s time to just relax and enjoy the company of our family and friends. Our schedule is packed full over the next two weeks with visits and activities including an overdue visit with my mom. In two weeks we head off for a family camping trip to New Hampshire where we will take over seven adjoining campsites and will be full of my two sister’s families including lots of kids. It’ll be a lot be fun.
Monday, 10/4/2021 – Ok, I get it. You think we quit the website. The fact of the matter is, almost. On our last update, almost three months ago now we were still relaxing at my sister’s home in Uxbridge, Massachusetts. We had also just discovered that our slide cable had broken for the third time. And this was after we had proactively replaced all the cables prior to this year’s trip. To say we were disappointed is an understatement.
Since that last update however, we did in fact have some great times. Both Claudia and I were able to spend some quality time with my mom. I went alone to help get some stuff done and to have her to myself for a few days while Claudia headed down at a later time along with my sister so that the three of them could enjoy some beach time together. The family camping trip to New Hampshire was a hoot and we had a lot of fun with my sister’s family with plenty of pool time to get though the days and so much good food including starting each day with a different family member serving their own style of home fries to the entire group. Following a brief stop back at Camp Sawash, Claudia and I headed back to New Hampshire for another two weeks near Lake Winnipesaukee and the White Mountains. My son and his family stayed nearby so we were able to spend some great time with all of them. We also had one of our other granddaughters stay with us so she could join the fun. We enjoyed exploring caves, played some mini golf, enjoyed some arcades and were able to really spend some quality time together. Claudia’s daughter and her boyfriend were also able to visit for a couple of days so it was quite the fulfilling trip.
Once we hit the road again it was time to begin our trek south. After a few days on the road we arrived at the North Carolina Fairgrounds where we camped for almost a week. From there we made daily trips to my daughter’s home and had such a good time visiting. The kids were so excited every time we showed up and the energy level was always at a peek. We sat for the kids a few times and were really able to bond. We enjoyed a day out to a trampoline park where we also played some mini golf, drove bumper cars and watched the kids walk some ropes high above us before finishing the day off by burning some energy on the trampolines.
As with all visits, this one too came to an end as we headed off once again, this time back towards Texas. We travelled three days before making a multi night stop in Vicksburg, Mississippi for a break. Our planned three day break turned to two as we watched hurricane Ida track out of the gulf and straight towards us. By leaving a day early we were able to miss most of the wind and just about all the rain.
On August 30th we arrived back here in Edinburg, Texas. It sure is nice to be back home but the heat remains high so outside activities are still at a minimum. We’ve pretty much emptied out the RV and just got it back from the service center who replaced the broken cable since we never did find anyone on the road who could (or would) fix it. It was a long couple of months with no slide, no bureau drawers and no way out of my side of the bed without climbing over Claudia. I know it sounds like fun but not at 2am for a bathroom break.
We’ve made the decision to sell our motor home. The market is good for selling right now so we’re just going to do it. Our plans are to travel in the car for the next year or so, staying at motels, hotels and cabins as we explore new areas. We’ve already began looking for the model of RV that we’d like to purchase in the future. We’re definitely going to downsize. By how much we’ll have to see. Claudia and I both want her to be able to help with the driving and the 38’ Challenger, especially towing a car was just too big for her. We also don’t need all the space we originally needed since we always have our Texas home to return to. We’re looking at this next phase as a reboot to our plans and we are both excited about the future. Neither of us can imagine life without the travelling.
As for this web site, there will be some changes. It’s always been a very detailed web site and can sometimes seem more like a job than a hobby. We have discussed many ways to streamline our travels and we hope you come back now and then to see how and what we’re doing. There will no longer be almost daily updates as we travel but we hope you’ll enjoy our summarized versions even more.
We’ll post again before we hit the road and let you know how our plans are going. In the meantime, I’ll be doing some cleanup on the web site but posts will be at a minimum. We want to thank those of you who have followed since our travels all began in 2013 and wish you all safe and happy lives.
Till we meet again!!