Saturday, October 31, 2009

Just Chillin!

We are in Warrior, AL. We arrived on Thursday and are just hanging out doing chores, etc. It's almost like being home. Al had a few things to work on. I've been doing laundry and all the domestic stuff that needs to get done. Yesterday, I made some homemade chicken noodle soup and froze half of it for another time. We hadn't left the campground until today, when we ventured out to the Piggly Wiggly grocery store to pick up a few items. This is not a happening place, but sometimes you just need to relax, do a little reading, and do some things that need to get done.

The weather has been on and off. Yesterday was warm, but not sunny. Last night the temperature dropped drastically. It was actually hot when we went to bed and cold when we got up, so we needed to turn the heat on.

We are leaving here tomorrow and plan to stop in Montgomery, Al for a night or 2 then will head down to the Gulf Coast. Hope the weather is good. After that we hope to go to New Orleans.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


We have been enjoying our stay here in Nashville. We went to our first concert at the Grand Ole Opry on Tuesday night. It was wonderful. It wasn't anything like other concerts I've been to. Even if you aren't a Country Music fan, you can't help but be in awe. This is such a historical place. I felt so much emotion just being there. There were 8 different performers. They all put on a great show. Jeannie Seely, Del McCouty Band (Bluegrass group), John Conlee, Gloriana, Connie Smith, Jimmy Wayne, Jimmy Dickens (88 yrs. old), and Martina McBride. I didn't recognize some of the names, but when they got up on the stage, I recognized their songs. Many of these singers may be considered "has beens" but I have to say I really enjoyed the older ones as much as the newer groups. John Conlee was great and when Connie Smith sang "Amazing Grace" it was absolutely beautiful. Little Jimmy Dickens was a hoot, can't sing that well but was so funny anyway, and the fact that he is such an icon and still performing at his age was amazing. Since I enjoy Martina McBride's music, I was happy she was performing, and I wasn't disappointed.

One thing I learned that I never knew, the shows they put on are on live radio. So all the applause from the audience is heard on the radio as well. They even have advertisements during the show. It was a fun experience and I hope to go there again sometime.

Today we visited the Country Music Hall of Fame. It is a must see when visiting Nashville. We aren't big on museums, but we did enjoy this. I was a little disappointed because I was hoping there would be more displays on Johnny Cash. Hank William's display was huge. It must depend on who contributes the most memorabilia. We even had lunch there, and it was not only good but very reasonably priced.

The weather hasn't been great. It rained all day yesterday, so we just stayed in and didn't venture out until later in the day. Luckily it cleared up in time for the concert.

This campground is closing for the season tomorrow. I guess that means we haven't gone far enough south yet. We will be on the road tomorrow heading south toward Alabama.

Monday, October 26, 2009

We Now Have Solar

Shortly before starting out on our trip, we decided to put solar panels on the roof of our rig. I was a little apprehensive to do this, but Al had done a lot of reading about it and this was something he wanted to do. He finally convinced me that maybe it was a good idea, as eventually we would like to do some camping in National Parks as well as in the Adirondacks. These parks do not have power and many people use generators when there for an extended amount of time. Of course, when we were younger, we used to do a lot of rough camping out of our canoe, paddling out to islands in Saranac Lake. These places had no ammenities and we got by fine, but I guess you could say "times have changed!"

On our first night in Old Bethpage, we found out just how handy it is to have solar. We have a surge protector and it can test the electrical box at campgrounds before plugging in. It showed him that the neutral and hot wires were reversed. Without this device, we would have plugged in and possibly fried our converter. We called the office and they couldn't get an electrician to come until the next morning. This is where the solar comes in. We were able to do everything we would normally do if we were on the grid. I made coffee, ran the microwave, blowed dried my hair, played on the computer, etc. We also watched TV that evening. The solar panels charge while going down the road so they were fully charged when we arrived at the campground. I must say, it is really great!

The next morning the electrician came and fixed the problem, but we could have managed anyway. At that point, I had made breakfast already using the toaster and coffee pot. We wanted to try out the solar anyway, but I was hoping to at least have regular electricity as a back-up.

We decided to spend a few days in Nashville, as we have never been there. On our way, from West Virginia, through Virginia the foliage was spectacular. Virginia is definately one of our favorite states. Last night Al convinced me to stay overnight in a Sam's Club parking lot, something I said I wouldn't do. Are you starting to see a pattern here!? Hmmm.....Honestly, though it was absolutely fine. There were a few other campers there as well and it was very well lit. Both Walmarts and Sam's Club allow RVer's to stay overnight in their parking lots and it is a very common practice. My advice to anyone doing this, is to make sure there are other campers there and that you have a good feeling about the area you are in. Again, I have to say the solar was a good thing. I got to watch Desperate Housewives, one of my favorite shows. Plus, it was very peaceful and quiet there. We got up in the morning and made coffee, had some cereal and off we went.

We just arrived in Nashville and are staying at a Corps of Engineers Campground just 7 miles from the city. It is really beautiful here. We are surrounded by water. It is almost 5pm Eastern time and the sun is bright. It is really nice here. We are planning on taking in some of the sights here, but we also just want to relax a little.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Long Island

On Wednesday, Oct. 21 Al and I started out on a 6 month trip. We decided we would be brave and take our 38ft. Montana fifth-wheel over the Tapanazee Bridge and the Throgs Neck Bridge to visit his sister, Judy in Williston Park, NY. This is also the town he grew up in. Williston Park is located on the upper part of Long Island, close to NYC. It was fun driving around the area and seeing all the changes, since the last time we visited.

Thursday was Judy's birthday so we went out to dinner to celebrate with Judy, and her son, Jim and his wife Dianne and their charming teen-age son, Jimmy. It was loads of fun and we really enjoyed everyone's company. There was lots to talk about, so we were at the Restaurant for quite a while. The food was great! Italian of course!

We were really spoiled while visiting his sister. She made two of Al's favorite desserts, Chocolate Cream pie with real whipped cream on Thursday, and on Friday she made a Swedish Torte. The torte was a recipe that his Mom always made for him and was always a favorite.

Of course no trip to his hometown would be complete without a trip to his favorite deli, Rudi's. He has always enjoyed their rolls, their salads and roast beef. Of course, things change over the years, and it was not quite as good as it used to be. Well, one thing I can say for sure, we ate very well on this trip.

Since RV parks are not plentiful in that area, we found one in Old Bethpage, NY which is a little further out on the island. Old Bethpage is home to Bethpage Village Restoration, which is a unique little village set up with mid 19th century homes and businesses. It is set up much like a smaller version of Williamsburg, as it has characters wearing period costumes and playing the various roles they represent. We didn't get time to visit it yet, but it is on the agenda for the next time for sure.

We got a late start this morning. We were both feeling a little under the weather and very tired.
We had planned on stopping in Roanoke, Va for a short visit with my Aunt Teen and my cousins. We had planned to meet them all for lunch on Sunday, but we knew we weren't going to make it that far, by Sunday. We decided we would like to go another time when we will have more time to spend with them. We always seem to have much to talk about, since we don't see them often.

We are staying in Falling Water, WV tonight and aren't sure if we will be here for one night or two. I'm doing my second load of laundry in my little combination washer/dryer. We had a nice dinner and hope to hit the bed early.

We are trying to get used to a slower pace. We are not in vacation-mode anymore. We are learning that we can take our time, and go at our own pace. So, we will go where we go, and we know we don't necessarily have to be tourists all the time. We hope to just enjoy our great country and stop to smell the roses along the way.