Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Livingston, TX

Escapees Rainbows End
Livingston, TX

We finally made it to our spot for a couple weeks
in Texas.

After we left Jacksonville at Flamingo Lake RV Park,
we were driving right into the edge of the big storm.
I kept an eye on the radar and weather reports.
We decided when we got to Tallahassee we'd 
decide if we would stick it out, or trudge on.
When we saw the tornado watch on the phone,
that made our decision for us.
George parked Harvey in the Flying J,
and we had a late lunch in Denny's.

We figured if anything, we'd be safe once the semis parked around us!
The rain came pouring down around 12:30 that night.
By morning the weather wasn't as bad, so we headed west.

Our next stop was a Camping World in Hammond, LA.
We were told that they had great sites with electric hookups.
We had pulled in kind of early, around 1:30,
and was told that we couldn't stay in the sites!
In the meantime we decided to look around at the new RVs,
but didn't buy :-)
At around closing, we asked again if it was ok to stay,
and since there were a few open,
they said sure :-)

This morning we took off around 7 am,
and made the rest of the trip to Livingston.
Route 10 is still as bumpy as before,
and the bridge over the Lake Charles waterway 
still looks like it's going to launch you into the sky!

One of the reasons we needed to stay in Texas
for a few weeks was to
a) Get our annual inspection
b) Get my annual inspection :-)

We pulled into the Soda Auto Repair
around 12:45,
and at 12:55 and $14.00 we were inspected...
Harvey & Truck, not me!

My Obamacare plan is now an HMO, so I had to pick a doctor
here in Texas, so on the 5th I'll get my inspection out of the way.

While we're here we'll be spending time with George's brother Bill,
and his wife Connie.
It's been a year since we last saw them.

This is our spot in Rainbow's End.

It's nice to have a few weeks to relax,
and get some things taken care of.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Charleston, Part 2

Flamingo Lake RV Resort
Jacksonville, FL

Last night we camped at Flamingo Lake RV Resort.
We had planned on spending the night in Camping World
 in Jacksonville, but they didn't allow it.
The RV park did offer a Good Sam discount, so it was only $52, yikes!

But, I wanted to finish posting about Charleston.
Saturday morning we got up bright and early and drove
over the the dock and Mom's ship.
The passengers were disembarking and all going their separate ways.
The last excursion, however, was a guided city tour,
and we were able to join them!

We boarded a small bus, and got a narrated tour
of Charleston's oldtown.

The historical buildings show all of the charm of the city.

We stopped at the Charleston Museum,
the oldest in the country!
The tour allowed for a half hour,
which wasn't near enough.

There were exhibits with Low Country history,
and when the city was under siege.
A few pictures don't do it justice..

There was some great rot iron work on display.
A gentleman by the name of Philip Simmons was
a master iron worker.
He did wonderful work and was renowned all over Charleston.

 There was another whole room with cases upon cases of silver.

Military uniforms from the Revolution to the present.

The front of the museum had the H.L. Hunley replica on display.
It was the first American submarine in history to sink an enemy ship.

 Later in the afternoon, we helped Mom get some things shipped home.
She's staying at the Hilton for another night or two until the weather clears
and she can fly back to California.

We then drove back into town and hopped the free 'DASH' trolley.
It was a bit bumpy, and we couldn't see much :-)

One place I wanted to see while we were there,
was a dessert shop called Kaminsky's.
I happened to see it featured on a Food Network show
called 'Sinful Sweets'..
and couldn't pass it up!

I had a yummy Bourbon Pecan Pie,
and George had a Red Velvet Cake.

The portions were huge!
Mom opted out of dessert, but had a coffee laced with Kahlua instead :-)

We were all tired by then, so we took Mom back to her hotel
and with hugs
wished her safe travels.

There's a little P.S. to this story...

Mom's flight for today (Monday) was cancelled,
she's rebooked for tomorrow afternoon and will be home
in California tomorrow night.

We took off from Jacksonville,
hoping to make it to Pensacola for the night.
The current weather status has us
hunkered down in the Flying J in Tallahassee.

We'll still make it to Livingston, TX by Wednesday,
so no worries!

'Tis always an adventure!!!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Christmas in Charleston

James Island County Park
Charleston, SC

We had an enjoyable Christmas day!
I heard from my Mom that morning,
and her ship was fogged in at Beaufort, SC
so they weren't sure when they'd get into Charleston.

We lounged around for awhile that morning,
getting updates all the while from her.
We decided to drive into town,
we figured it wouldn't be very busy.

It was a nice drive, it only took 15 minutes.
George drove us around by the waterfront,
and we found a place to park and walk around.

The buildings in Charleston are just lovely..

It was cloudy, but warm and muggy.

Of course everything was closed,
so we'll have to come back and explore some more another time.
We walked over to the water, and the Fort Sumter National Monument.

The grounds around there were beautiful,
with flowers still blooming.

We even got someone to take our picture by the fountain..

In the meantime, we got updated from Mom, 
and she told us that they weren't going to arrive
in the port of Charleston until at least 8 pm!
we had to make some quick plans to find
a place to eat a Christmas dinner!

With the power of Google we found a place that
was open and serving dinner..
It was a great place called Anson's Restaurant.
They found a seat for us at the bar,
which was fine with us.

They had a nice Christmas offering on the menu,
with turkey, stuffing, sweet potato, green beans, and gravy.
George said the portion was so small we may have to find a McDonald's :-)

I found one of my favorite wines on the wine menu,
A half bottle was $33!!

After enjoying the good but pricey meal,
we found a Haagen-Daz and had dessert :-)

We made our way to the dock where my Mom would be arriving,
and walked around.
The weather was nice still!

The fog started to roll in, so we were worried that they may not make it.
We were able to track her progress on a website where you
can track marine traffic.
Who knew? :-)

We could hear the ships horn as it made it upriver
through the fog.
As it got closer to the dock, we could see that someone had
parked their small sailboat right where this guy needed to park!
A bunch of people who were partying on their boats
came out and pulled the small sailboat out of the way.
With applause from the people on the ship,
the captain pulled in perfectly :-)

My Mom stepped off to hugs from both of us!
There was a rush to get on a waiting bus,
where the passengers got a tour of the Christmas lights
at the James Island Park.
I rode with my Mom on the bus,
George followed behind,
and the driver dropped me off at the campground.

Yesterday we toured Charleston with Mom..
another post about that to come!

Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas!

James Island County Park
Charleston, SC

We want to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas!

We finally made our escape from Amazon Tuesday.
We had a busy day of picking up to the last minute
when they released us at 4 pm.

George and I had gotten pretty much everything
taken care of the night before,
so that bright and early (7:30!) we could take off.

We encountered some rain, but for the most part,
the weather was behind us,
and the traffic seemed to be going the other direction.

Our first stop was at a Camping World in Spartanburg, SC,
where we had a restful night.
Yesterday morning we finished the trip to
James Island County Park,
and to site #38.

We had a heck of a time getting level.
We ended up hooking up and backing it in again,
all the way over to the left and had better success.

We're so happy to be sitting and enjoying time off!

The weather is so warm here and muggy,
it was in the mid 70's, so shorts and flip flops for me!
We took a ride into a suburb of Charleston and had Chinese buffet..
a Christmas Eve tradition for us.

One thing that this park has is the 
Anytime you go out of the park,
if you aren't back before dark, 
you get to drive through and see the 
lights on the way
back to the campground.

What a spectacle it is!
3 miles of over 700 light displays.
This is just a taste of some of it..

This wasn't a real bridge, just lights, incredible!

There were a lot of animated scenes,
kids throwing snowballs,
Santa hitting a golf ball into the hole...
they do an incredible job.

Today we're lounging a bit,
then going to try Uber for the first time.
My Mom's cruise ship will be in Charleston around 3.
Parking is limited for a big truck,
so we'll get a ride into the city that way.
We get to go aboard,
and have Christmas dinner with her!
We then get to take the tour bus through the the light show,
where we can be dropped off at the campground.

Looking forward to spending Christmas with Mom :-)

Friday, December 18, 2015

Less than a week to go!

Heartland Campground
Campbellsville, KY

That light is getting brighter in the tunnel!

We were really hoping that we were going to get released early
(on good behavior!).
It's looking like we'll be here until our
 shift's ending date of the 23rd.
Typically they have us work 1/2 day on the last day,
but we're not hearing anything about that yet.
It would be helpful, as we can get on the road right after we get home,
and get halfway to Charleston and not have to pull in
to James Island on Christmas Day.

I had George pull out the Christmas decorations,
to get me in the spirit.

We got an update from the gentleman today that hired us 
for our next job gate guarding.
They're planning on 24 new gates in January alone,
so we'll be kept busy!
George and I are looking forward to this new venture
and getting some more funds in our account :-)

After Charleston, we will be heading to Livingston, TX
to get some doctor appointments and RV inspection.
My health insurance through Obamacare has changed to an HMO.
Of course with that I had to pick a doctor.
I found what looks to be a nice doctor with good reviews
right in Livingston, so an appointment was made.

We'll take Harvey to the same place we got him inspected
last year at this time.
We already paid our registration, and for the truck and RV 
was only $196.00.
The inspection only needs to get done when you are next in TX,
and it's not a big deal.

Next blog we should be in James Island County Park!

Friday, December 11, 2015

What? A light at the end of the tunnel?

Heartland Campground
Campbellsville, KY

Our bank account is looking pretty good!
We survived another 50 hour week,
and the week before we got an added bonus
when the referral money was added in.
If you refer people to Amazon,
they pay you $125 per person as long as they
complete 30 days of work.
(Thanks Nancy & Neil Savage for sticking it out!)

We've had some time for a social night or two.
Last Saturday we went to dinner with two special people
we met last year, Joe & Donna.
They picked us up and we went to Ragetti's for some decent Italian food.
The restaurant had a nice tree all decked out..

At work, they've again provided some nice meals.
Monday and Wednesday they provided a baked potato with chili and fixins.
It doesn't look the best, but it's delicious,
and gives us some energy for the second half of the day.
We loved it so much last year,
we actually do this at home for a quick meal.

I put out some of our Christmas decorations here in Harvey.
George needs to dig out the tree we have, it's buried in the basement :-)
Last year we didn't put anything out since we were going
to be traveling through the holiday.
Since we'll be in Charleston for Christmas eve & day,
I wanted to get in the spirit!

We're still waiting for the official release date.
Amazon always tells us in advance when our last day will be,
and to plan to work until the 23rd.
It's been pretty slow, however, so we'll see how it goes!

Wednesday, December 2, 2015


Heartland Campground
Campbellsville, KY

What a week!
Of course black Friday and cyber Monday
were included in this last work cycle.
All hands on deck is the norm.
This year they started 11 hour days,
which meant we had to change our schedule from 6:30 am to 5 pm
to 6 am to 5:30 pm.
We did one 11 hour day on black Friday,
but on Saturday there were several times where 
we actually had to stop picking because 
the packers couldn't keep up.
Because of that we decided to take it day by day,
so the next 2 days we left at 4:30.
We weren't the only ones :-)
By cyber Monday they were offering a $5 gift card
if anyone would stay the extra hour...
I don't think so :-)

The end of the day we all look like zombies...

George got moved to the catwalk.
He stands and watches totes go by on the conveyor,
from 30' up!
He's there in case they jam up, and he can take care of it.
It's a boring job he says, and he almost dozes off :-)

We are so ready to get out of here.
We won't know our release date for a few more weeks,
but we're hoping it is earlier than the 23rd.

We have made reservations at James Island County Park in Charleston, SC.
My Mom will be arriving there on the 26th 
after being on a cruise from Jacksonville. 
Due to the holiday period, we had to make the reservations,
from the 21st to the 27th.
No other times!
We may get there a couple days late, but definitely
will be able to enjoy the
George and I are excited to be able to see that,
and to spend some time with Mom.

Can't wait!!