Monday, September 24, 2012

A Week With Grandma BooneDocks

We left Detroit a week ago right after completing the chassis service on our motor home.  The main item we had done was the installation of a new set of shock absorbers.  We felt we had been porpoising too much on bumps in the road.  Our motor home only has a bit over 25,000 miles on it, so you might not think it would need new shocks, but we just didn’t feel we were really safe in some of these bouncing sessions, so we bit the bullet and ordered up a set of the best shocks we could find – Road Kings.  When Gary picked it up at the shop, the old shocks were lying nearby.  He picked up a rear shock and was able to compress it quite a bit just pushing down on the top.  He then tried one of the old front shocks.  He was able to compress it all the way down very easily.  We truly were driving with totally worn out shocks.  The new shocks are great.  The bounce is gone and the handling is improved somewhat as well.  We had the chassis lubed and inspected.  Everything checked out well.

100_4026We drove about 200 miles southwest to Indiana where we camped for a week to visit Gary’s mom.  Grandma BooneDocks (at some stage it seems all moms become known as Grandma instead), turned 90 last month.  She now resides in a nursing home.  We visited her for seven straight days.  When she moved from her home, Andy scanned all of her many pictures.  We show them to her now on my iPad and she enjoys the memories she gets from them.  One day, we took Alley cat with us and Grandma got joy from petting a kitty and hearing her purr.


100_4025Just as I made a pie to celebrate Gary’s birthday last month, I also made a pie for us to celebrate Grandma’s recent birthday.  This time is was a peach pie.  We had pie and ice cream one day (I buy the little individual ice cream cups at Walmart) and probably ruined Grandma’s dinner, but she enjoyed a fresh-baked pie.  But we didn’t put any candles on it

100_0011And we experienced another eating treat.  One night we went out to dinner with Gary’s brother and sister in law.  We have mentioned in an earlier blogpost an Indiana breaded pork tenderloin sandwich.  Well……………here it is.  it’s a slice of pork tenderloin pounded out thin, breaded, and then deep fried.  There should be as much meat hanging outside the bun as there is under it.  One of these days, we are going to have to stop eating all these local delicacies.

Tomorrow we are headed over to Celina, Ohio for a little bit of annual maintenance on the house portion of the motor home after which we will be working our way south to the Gulf Coast.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Family, Friends, and Bloggers

We are approaching the end of our three-week stay in the Detroit area.  The doctor and dentist visits are over.  We have done a fair bit of the shopping we have been needing to do.  We even took in the Wyandotte annual Fall city-wide garage sale and scored a few great bargains   For 50 cents, we bought a very long shafted drill bit that we can use to drill a hole in the ground to make it easier to hammer in our motor home welcome sign.  We made the sojourn to the nearest Camping World but generally only to be disappointed yet again with the lack of inventory at this particular store.  We spent lots of time with friends and family and will miss them, but we will be back again for Christmas.


We finally had the chance to catch up with some fellow full timers and bloggers.  Sue and Paul are not only also from the suburbs of Detroit, they also have major connections to the Ford Motor Company as Paul is retired from there as we are after long careers.  We had over 80 years of experience at Ford at our dinner table.  We have been communicating with them for probably two years now, well before The BooneDocks hit the road.  You can see their blog at:


Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Thoughts of 9/11

As we were hanging around in the motor home at Camp Bagman this morning, we watched some of the remembrance of 9/11 from the Pentagon with the President and Secretary of Defense.  When we blogged about Washington DC back in May, we didn’t write about the Memorial Park at the Pentagon as we wrote so much about other things we saw in DC.  But the Pentagon Memorial is a very moving memorial. 
There are 184 cantilevered benches in the Park, one for each person who died there that day. Each bench is inscribed with the name of a victim. There is a flowing pool of water under each bench.
The benches are organized according to the ages of the victim, ranging from 3 years to 71 years of age.  The benches are further arranged according to whether the victim was on the plane or in the Pentagon building.  At the 125 benches in honor of those who died in the building, the victims’ names and the Pentagon building are in the same view.  For the 59 people who died on the plane, their memorial benches face the other way and their names are observed facing the sky toward the plane’s approach to the building.
We will never forget 9/11 and we will never forget our walk through the Pentagon Memorial.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

What Is A Mud Hen?

We decided to take in one more minor league baseball game before the minor league season ended.  This time we took the easy drive down to Toledo to one of our favorite  baseball parks.  The Toledo Mud Hens are the Class AAA affiliate of our Detroit Tigers.  And they have one of the most unusual team names in all of baseball – Mud Hens.  So, just what is a mud hen?  We had to look it up ourselves.  According to the team’s website, a mud hen is a marsh bird with short wings and long legs that inhabits swamps or marshes. Such birds have been known as marsh hens, rails, coots, or mud hens.  The name for the team dates back to 1896.  At that time, the ball field was in an area surrounded by marshes and was frequented by what else – mud hens.


We went to the game expecting to see some of the Tigers stars of tomorrow.  Instead, we saw a lot of players who either hadn’t been able to stick in the majors or probably would not get the chance.  It seems the Tigers have concentrated on drafting and developing pitchers and the cupboard is fairly bare as far as position players go.  It is not a bad strategy as it is fairly easy to trade a prospect with a live young arm for a good position player.

100_3974The Mud Hens had runners on second and third in the bottom of the ninth behind by just one run, but they couldn’t push them across home plate so we didn’t get to see a victory.  Once again, we walked up to the ticket window and were able to buy great seats this time in the second row just past the visitors dugout.  The seats cost $9 each, one of the things we really like about minor league baseball. 

Will we go see the Tigers play?  We doubt it.  While we would love to, the same seat at a Tigers game would cost $60 if it could be purchased at the ticket window, but in all likelihood as the Tigers are in contention for the playoffs and are selling out, it probably would cost even a lot more from a scalper.  And we would have to pay for secure parking in Detroit whereas we were very comfortable with our free parking in Toledo.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Back In Michigan

We are back in Michigan for visits with family, friends, doctors, dentists, service shops, and various other recharging needs.  There aren’t many RV parks in the Detroit area and none that are truly convenient to our needs so we have landed back where full timing started for us at “Camp Bagman”.  We camped in the small RV storage area behind his building when we were making the move out of our condo and it served us well, so we asked if we could camp here during our stay in Michigan and Chuck agreed to host us again.


The view in the picture to the right is out of the front window of our motor home.  No, it is not one of the more spectacular vistas we have had, but the location works perfectly for us, we have a 50 amp hookup and can fill our water tank, the pad is solid and level, we have enough space for our slideouts, the sky is clear to the TV satellites, the 3G modem is getting good speeds, and the price couldn’t be any more right, so we are very content spending our three weeks in Michigan here.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Fireworks Stores and State Lines

Why is it that there generally seem to be fireworks stores at the borders between states?  We have noticed this phenomenon throughout our travels.  We remember some years back that if you bought fireworks in Indiana you had to sign this form that you were going to take them out of the state and only use them in another state.  Is that the deal; you buy your fireworks for Michigan in Indiana and you buy your fireworks for Indiana in Michigan, etc.?

0904111041-001And all the billboards for the fireworks stores are in huge competition to offer the best deal – BOGO --buy one get one free and the next sign will be buy one get four free.  But of course a fireworks store in Texas was not about to be outdone – BOGE – Buy One Get Eleven Free.

100_4008On the BOGE sign, I thought the exploding firecrackers also looked like people losing their fingers on their hands.  So, now every time I see a fireworks sign I give Gary the sign of blown off fingers.  And as we cross more and more state lines, it is the gift that keeps on giving.  But sometimes I get confused among the blown off fingers sign, the hook ‘em horns sign, and the Hawaiian hang loose sign.  Oh well, such are the worries of a retiree.