Our Lady of the Blue Highways

Our Lady of the Blue Highways
Portrait in oils by Jackie Poutasse

Saturday, December 20, 2014

NEVER, NEVER, NEVER ……………………………..

Buy a used camper and take it on a six months trip without  trying everything out first!

Please note - these are not complaints - merely observations.  

Let me give you the history of my meeting and acquiring Miss Daisy - since I wasn’t posting this past year.

Since I first decided in 2010 that I was going to get a rig and go full time RVing, I had been defining and re-defining what I wanted.  I started big, and gradually brought my expectations down to reality.   At first I wanted 28ft with slide outs -  what I finally decided was that something around 20-23 ft - no slide-outs (just another something to go wrong) and I wanted twin beds so if I wanted to I could have a traveling companion (currently that’s Diane)

Right after Christmas last year, for some reason I decided to check out Craig`s list for a rig.   And, there she was!   A 22ft travel trailer, no slides, and best of all - twin beds.  Just what I was looking for - and…….. The price was right.   I snapped it up.

Brooke suggested I tow it out to their place (300 miles west) and Scott would go through everything to make sure it worked correctly and was safe.

Scott had a couple surgeries to recover from so it was August before we made the trip. That  was my first time pulling a trailer in at least 40 years.

Scott did a lot of work while we were there - he noted that the frame was torqued, and jacked it up to see if that would help, and put in a new ¾ inch sub floor to help keep it straight,  fixed the electrical pigtail which had a wire cut in two, checked to make sure the air conditioner worked, and checked out the propane situation - the stove, oven, and furnace.  He also built me a custom step - deep enough to fit my whole foot onto and shallow steps for comfort.

While Scott was doing his thing, Brooke was helping me clean and paint.  We ended up staying there for two full weeks.  During his inspection of the rig (who’s name is Miss Daisy, by the way)  he discovered critical problems with the black water tank.

When we returned home, I called a local RV repair shop and made an appointment - first available was 30 days away - September 17.   While waiting for the appointment, I worked on the painting and puttied (sp?) the floor, preparing it for finishing it with brown paper bags - if you’ve never heard of this - check it out on line - it looks really neat.

The day for the appointment came with painting still to be finished and the floor to be started.

Well, long story short - Miss Daisy was in the shop until December 8th.  We had to load all our stuff in the truck, pick up Miss Daisy and head down the road.

I’ve already posted about our trip down to Sun City AZ - so now Ill continue on.

We got all the cabinet doors attached and the latches installed.  We left Sun City at 9:30 for the 350 mile trip to Deming.   I figured 6 ½ hours - but that was based on not getting lost exiting Phoenix - Yep, that’s what happened - so, we backtracked and found Hwy 10 and started out again - we arrived in Deming a little after 6 pm - office shut tight - so I found a site and got temporarily set up.   Plugged in the electric and hooked up the water.

About 15-20 minutes later, I noticed water flowing across the floor - I went outside and found we were standing in a lake.   I turned off the water, and thought maybe I just didn’t get the connection tight enough - we had jugs of water, so I didn’t worry about it.   When I got up in the morning, entered the bathroom and stepped in a puddle of water.   Yikes, the plumbing is leaking - somewhere - in any event, I am not hooking up to the water again - Ill manage by hauling jugs of water in.

While I was working on this post, the battery on my laptop went dead, so I hauled it over to the Bunkhouse (coffee, widescreen TV, library, jigsaw puzzles, and card playing) and I met one of the campers and she told me not to dare turn on the propane unless someone (her next door neighbor in the camp - a retired engineer) checked it for safety.  She was very forceful on that point - then she told me that just 2 weeks before, a lady lit her furnace, not knowing that propane had leaked in her rig and the explosion blew out the back of her trailer and caught the next door 5th wheel on fire.   She got out ok, but her beloved little dog did not.   So - I will definitely wait til I have it checked out.

About that time, my new friend looked out the window and said “here comes the nicest and most helpful lady in the campground“.   I looked out and saw the rig she was walking away from, and asked - is that Grace?   She said  - do you know Grace?    I met Grace 2 years ago when I was here in my tent.

When the office opened at 9 - I went to check in and they had me move to another site and there I met more people - the couple to our right are on their first RV adventure, too.  The gentleman on our left was very helpful - he helped me get Miss Daisy settled into place and will help me with the sewer set-up - first step being I needed a couple more fittings for the hose.

So, once Miss Daisy was in place, we took  off for Wally World and picked up a few things - couldn’t get all the fittings, and missed the hardware store, so Ill try that again tomorrow

The weather here today is absolutely beautiful - in the mid 50s and tonite will be in the mid 30s

I am going to close this for now - Diane is taking a nap, and I am headed to the Bunkhouse for announcements.  Tonite is pot luck dinner night - for which we have nothing to contribute - but we will just explain we are not yet set up for cooking.   How I wish I had an electric cook top right now - I wouldn’t have to worry about the propane.

They have now increased the strength of their internet - not that I can get online in my rig, but at least I can take my computer to the Bunkhouse and get connected - so maybe the delays between posting will not be quite so long.

Until next time,  Bear Hugs

Boots and Tucker and of course, Diane

She believed she could, so she did!


  1. Oh Boots! It is too early in your trip to have issues! Hope things shape up soon and keep writing!

  2. Yes, but..... they are little issues!