Through Foreign Eyes - Spring/Summer 2009 travel blog

Campsites are rarely level. This can interfere with the efficient operation of an RV frig and can also cause occupants to fall out of bed or end up in heap on the side of the bed nearest the wall. You open a cabinet and all the contents fall into your face. Our old trailer had manual jacks that we cranked by hand, keeping an eye on a level bubble such as the one a carpenter uses on his level. Now the snazzy motor home has automatic hydraulic jacks. You push a button and they do the rest. At times our parking spots have been so uneven that the jacks would literally lift some of our wheels off the ground. But then it would be time to move on and one or two of the jacks would not return to their little cubbyhole under the chassis. Some of them would only go up part way, triggering a blood curdling warning alarm. We took the fuse out of the alarm system - no real solution, and every time we'd set them, we would wonder if this was the campground where we would remain for the rest of our lives.

We had already paid through the nose to have one of them replaced and another no longer responded to the nudges Ken would give it with a 2 x 4. Since the manufacturer of these jacks is only about 150 miles from our home and on the route to Arizona, we paid them a visit. They put our motor home up on a lift - quite an impressive sight - and replaced a jack and the springs to all the jacks and in less than two hours we were on our way, having paid about 1/3 of what we paid in Florida for our previous replacement. The repair guys confirmed our suspicions that the fact that the previous owner of our rig never bother to put the jacks down, caused them to seize. That'll never happen again!!

While they worked, we lunched at a local diner. We love to eat at restaurants that are not franchises. They make us feel like we are really somewhere else. This was a diner where everyone knew everyone else's name and everyone looked like they could have been related to us. The french fries, a guilty pleasure, appeared to be breaded with a thin coating of something crunchy, making them totally irresistible. The food was cooked for us, not baking under a heat lamp. It would have been tempting to return at dinner time for the fish fry advertised on the window. But it was time to move on.

Now we just need to fix the leak in the toilet sprayer and get the satellite dish to point in the right direction. After a winter in the snow and ice, there's always something to fix in our home away from home.

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