Saturday, October 28, 2017

'17/#30 First Day Issues (and I'm not talking philatelic)

Here we are on our first day of work in Pharr Texas. This job is supposed to be simple and for the most part stress free but as with most plans things happened. We showed up on time, like good little workers, and our key wouldn't work. That means we can't get into the office. That also means we can't get to the list of phone numbers (in the office) we need to call someone for help. Security was able to get in contact with the park manager and she let us in and straightened out the key issue. Our day finally started but it must have been an omen.

We opened the office, logged on to the computers, set up the cash drawer, and turned on the phones with no problem. We were on a roll...or were we? The first customer of the day came to check in and ooops! The system won't let us in to do anything so another call, this time to the office manager. We didn't want to bother the park manager again. Our purpose of being here is to allow the regular staff to have the weekends off. We were off to a good start.

Until the office manager gets here to fix the computer problem we are hard at work. I am blogging and Mary is entertaining herself on her phone. We have been told this is what we will be doing most of the time we are here. Life is rough! LOL.

I am going to sign off now because we are so busy (NOT!) and I need another cup of coffee to keep me awake on the job near our home in Pharr TX because....                  
Home is where we park it, 
Frank and Mary

Thursday, October 26, 2017

'17/#29 Hola From Our Winter Home

We have arrived in Pharr Texas, just north of Mexico, and are getting settled in. The first thing we encountered was another electrical problem (*#$@%$^) but fortunately it turned out to be just a loose connection. Our site is a good size, it's orientation is ideal for our satellite TV, and it is conveniently located to everything around the office/club house. We got to meet the people we are going to work with and by first impressions it is going to be a fun winter.

The past two days we have been driving around finding grocery stores, department stores, pharmacies, etc. This area is called the Rio Grande Valley and it has become a mecca for snowbirds. Everything we need and things we didn't know we needed is nearby. Traffic is starting to build but it is not a problem after 30 years in Florida dealing with snowbird traffic. Like every place else we will find the short-cuts around the area.

We will do a couple of hours of orientation and officially start work this weekend. It doesn't seem to be anything we can't handle and look forward to meeting the rest of our coworkers and the soon to arrive winter residents. This is a very active park so we won't be bored. I'm going to sign off for now so we can finish setting up for our stay here in our home in Pharr Texas because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Monday, October 23, 2017

'17/#28 The Next Adventure Is On The Horizon

Golden Colorado was fun. It was good to see Scott and spend some time with an old friend. Our last day there we went to the Coors Brewery. The tour was interesting and with the three of us it was down right hilarious. Since Mary doesn't drink beer I got to drink all her free samples. Add that to the lack of breakfast that morning and I got a pretty good buzz. We fixed that with an awesome lunch at a local sandwich shop called Snarfs. If you ever pass through Golden and are looking for some good food check out Snarfs.

Our next destination is south Texas. We are not planning to burn up the highway so we will take four days getting there. The first night was in Dalhart, TX, the second was in Loraine, TX and tonight is just outside of San Antonio. Tomorrow we should be in Pharr TX and that will be our home for the winter. The people we are working for down there are as excited as we are about our arrival.

Tonight we will get to bed early so we can get on the road early. We would like to get settled in so we can get the lay of the land. It will take a few days to find all the local stores, restaurants, laundromats, and other retailers in the area. Of course we will find our favorites and establish our regular haunts. That is why we take our home with us.

Well dinner is ready and our home here in San Antonio is smelling good because...
Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Friday, October 20, 2017

'17/#27 And The Wheels On The Rig Go Round And Round....

Everything is fixed and the jello has settled. It is time to hit the road and that time is 6:15 am. Keystone this time of year is winding down it's season and at this hour the downtown area is a ghost town. This is the last picture of us heading out of Keystone and on to our next adventure.

Our next stop is Golden CO where we will stay for a couple of days. The drive was easy with perfect weather all the way. 400 plus miles is a good day for us now that we don't live by a time clock. We are looking forward to meeting up with a friend of ours from our post office days while we are here. Scott, a co-worker and friend, has retired and is now living in the area so we will visit while we are here. He has only been living here for a few months so we will all go see the Coors brewery together.

Scott must be as excited to see us as we are to see him. He arrived at the RV park the same time we did and we had some time to just sit and shoot the breeze. Later that evening we went out to dinner at Woody's Wood Fired Pizza in downtown Golden. Awesome pizza and even better company...who could ask for more? Tomorrow we head to the brewery.

It has been a good day but a long day so we are going to call it a night here in our home in Golden CO because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

'17/#26 What? Still Here!?!?

One more blog from Keystone SD. We had an electrical problem in the trailer and want to get it fixed before we roll. We could have left and taken care of it later but the inconvenience of not being able to cook in the rig wasn't worth it.

A mobile tech came out to us and diagnosed the problem. It seems the power transfer switch has gone bad and needs replacing. He will get the part and be back today and we should be ready to hit the road.

Depending on how late he gets the job done will determine when we leave. It could be this afternoon or early tomorrow. We shall see. Like I have said in the past...our home is on wheels and our plans are written in jello.  The jello has been shaken up once again.

The next blog will be from our home, hopefully from some place other than Keystone SD because.....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Monday, October 16, 2017

'17/#25 It's Done!

The hotels are closed and we are done working here in Keystone SD. We will be leaving in the next few days. Laundry has to be done and final preparations to get the rig on the road again. The truck has new tires, fresh oil, and it's safety check from Ford so it is ready to go. This morning we are having some electrical issues and will get it taken care of tomorrow or somewhere down the road. Either way we will have the wheels rolling by Friday the latest.

This summer has been a lot of fun and we will miss many of the friends we have made here. Some of the work campers have swapped information and promises to keep in touch with the potential of meeting down the road in the future. The international girls that were here have moved on but are keeping in touch as they travel. Some have gone home and back to school while others are taking some time to travel and see more of the United States. Either way they have stayed in touch and shared stories and pictures from their adventures.

Right now we are doing our laundry and saying our goodbyes to the girls who work here. We have gotten friendly with them coming here every week. Laundromats are more than a place to get your clothes clean. It is also a gathering place for travelers and locals alike. We get to share tales of our travels and learn about local things to see and do. Like I've said before, it is the people that we meet that make some of our sweetest memories.

Well the laundry is almost done and will not fold itself. My next blog will be from somewhere down the road, so this is goodbye for the last time from our home in Keystone SD because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Monday, October 2, 2017

'17/#24 One Last Outing

In my last blog I told everyone that our time here in South Dakota was coming to an end. We have seen everything and done everything we hoped to while we were here. It seems that the only thing left is to finish our job commitment and get the rig ready to roll.

But wait, there was one more thing we had to see before leaving. Every fall Custer State Park has a buffalo round-up. The herd is gathered into a corral and examined by veterinarians, the new calves are tagged branded and inoculated, and the excess buffalo are sold at auction. This is a maintained herd and the grasses in the area they are contained in will only support 1000 buffalo through the winter. With new calves being born throughout the year the herd could be as much as 1400 hence the buffalo auction. Yes Mary wants a buffalo and no Frank won't let her have one. I'm such a meany!

The round-up is open to the public and draws crowds between 15 and 20 thousand viewers each year. This year we wanted to be in that group. To get there so we could, first of all get in, and secondly get a good spot to view meant we had to get up at 3am. After a couple of snoozes and packing the truck we were on the road. We arrived at the park around 4:30 and got to the line entering the round-up by 5am. A small group of about 25 buffalo ran right through traffic as we headed into the parking area and we watched several run right past our window. One big bull plowed into another pickup and took off like it was nothing. We were parked by 6am and at the breakfast tent at 6:15 as they opened. Then a quick trip to the souvenir tent and then to our seats making friends with other round-up watchers. Our timing was perfect.

Soon after the cowboys and cowgirls came out and were letting us know which way that they hoped the herd would go but apparently the herd was being ornery and anything could happen. Soon after that the noise started and....

the buffalo started coming over the hill. It was amazing and something we will never forget. We came, we saw, we got the t-shirt (literally), and we have another memory.

This is why we love our life and the lifestyle we have chosen. less than 3 weeks and we will be on the road. So while we prepare for our departure this is goodbye for now from our home in Keystone SD because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary