Bright and early the next day, and I do mean early, not my early which would be sometime around 9 AM but sun up, Dustin and I were both awake. Worry does that to a person you know. Sid however, was soundly sleeping. We let him be and went out to assess the damage.
It was nice and cool as we slid, well maybe scraped and shuffled, ourselves under to see what had happened. Turns out an exhaust hanger had broke and the remains were rubbing the wheel well. Not so bad after all but we needed a muffler shop or something before more of the exhaust system started to pull away. No coat hanger fixes for Wilbur he gets too hot.
So another phone call to Coach-Net was in order. Problem was it was too early, nothing was open. Coach-Net would have to call us back later with our destination for the day. We had some time to waste. Only thing is there's really not much to do in a parking lot at 6AM with a sleeping child and a broken RV. As far as parking lots go, this was a pretty nice one. A grassy embankment on two sides and a tree at the top gave the illusion of camping. We were far enough away from the road that traffic noise wasn't an issue . . . and I didn't take a picture.
Anyways, I won't bore you with too many details of waiting for the phone to ring so, I'll kill so time another way.
Some randomness for you.
1) I am incredible grateful for my son's behaviour during the odyssey that was the trip to Elko. He was a real trooper and patiently put up with his insane parents deciding to go forward rather than stopping to feed him. (We did eat when we got to Elko ;) ) No whining, no complaining, just happily playing and watching the scenery and stars. I don't think he's ever seen real a real starry sky. He's a city kid and it was pretty fascinating to him.
2) And while I'm on the topic of my son, I thought I would talk a little about his harness. You've already seen it in this picture
and might be wondering what it is. Well, Sid is a special needs kid and sitting in a car seat (well any chair) for a long time is hard. He gets tired and slumps so that seat belts aren't in the right position. This harness holds the seat belt in the right place through loops on the side. The seat belt is still the safety device, this is only an assistant for positioning. For more information click this link. He likes it, it's his race car driving costume. ;)
3) The other thing you can see is a cord tied around the cabinet under
the sink. Even with the earthquake latch this one popped open a couple
of times when we were in California. It got reinforced with a bungee
cord only after my under sink basket bounced out, spewing it's contents,
including the dish soap, everywhere. Small fix, it only took a couple
of minutes at a rest stop. The dish soap clean up? Well, I think I
finally have it all up.
4) There are NO affiliate links on this blog.
5) The paper towel holder. What freaking genius put that there? If there is the slightest breeze or bump the towels spin off the roll and into the sink. I pulled the paper towel roll out and used it as packing material in a drawer. That puppy is coming down next time I'm in Wilbur with some tools. It's glued as well as screwed in so I'm pretty sure I'm going to make a mess.
6) Meet the mascot
I found him at a junk store, still in the package, pretty badly faded but I don't really care. He would fade anyways living on the mirror.
Cat In The Hat -> Dr. Seuss -> The Places You'll Go
It's a stretch but, he makes me smile and if you come out with us don't forget to rub the cat's tummy for luck.
7) our Tom-Tom's nick name is The Girl Friend, She has a lovely voice and though she is quite small for Wilbur.
8) Entertaining Music for little ones and families
I highly recommend this CD
This was our 5th time on this drive with this CD and I can still listen to it. I even enjoy it. The first time it was one of two CDs we had, (very sad story about a dead RF transmitter that I'll go into another time), so it's seen a lot of use. About 10,000 miles I think. This time we simplified and didn't bother with mp3s and transmitters.
The other CD , in case you are wondering, was a Christmas one that we found when we searched the car something/anything other than the Little People. I still like it but it got left at home.
9) How bad are the roads in California? Well that CD that has logged 10,000 miles no longer plays through. Now we have to skip tracks 10 and 11. One particularly bad bump on 680 somewhere between Fremont and Pleasanton caused the CD to glitch. The morning in Elko allowed me to take a good look at it. The bouncing, thumping and bumping has put a big pit and scratch in it. What a disaster zone! No where else that we went was that bad!
10) I think there is a wire off of Wilbur's antenna. The radio has virtually no reception except where there is a strong signal, like in town. I'm so glad we brought the CDs and really, that's a pretty small thing to fix. Once I figure out where the wire is and where it is supposed to go. I'm not even going to label that as a later job - it's a someday job.
11) The Real Cost of Wal-Mart Camping
So it's free
right? Well, yes but while you are there don't forget to buy, the
pillow cases you forgot, replacements for the D Cell batteries that have gone missing, some groceries,
an extra pair of PJs for the kid since he grew another couple of inches
over night, some longer bungee cords, a new CD 'cause my dearly beloved didn't know that I can't go on a road trip and not listen to Lynard Skynard, and on and on. So, camping fees for the night $100. Yikes, Wal-Mart an expensive campground.
Dustin finally got a chance to really look at the manual while Sid was sleeping. I guess while I had been out taking pictures, Dad's services as entertainer had been required. He found out there's a hidden switch labeled 'climate controlled'. The coach had been too hot yesterday and that switch should have been off. A bit of searching revealed it and it was on. Oops. Love quick fixes! Fortunately, only the lettuce really suffered. I think it may have been frozen by the ice I dumped into the drawers, rather than over heated.
On the topic of the fridge, we had bought a fridge fan just like this one
in case the fridge had issues. Yesterday, unfortunately, we had no batteries for it. That was fixed in the very early. lol Thank you, Wal-Mart.
I didn't know if our fixes were going to work so I left the ice in the fridge. I'm happy to say that they did and we had ice for drinks until the very last day. I do think that the ice helped cool it down quicker once we had the problem fixed.
We also had internet, yippee, must have been a dead spot. They happen, right?
Since we were worrying about the exhaust system, what about my over heating legs? Well a bit of internet searching later and yep, that console in the middle houses the exhaust manifold. She says while patting herself on the back for remembering something her dad said. lol In our vehicle there is no heat shield between the passenger's side and the manifold only the plastic cover. Winnebago apparently puts in heat shielding, Fleetwood does not. Cheap! Well, we'll do that later.
And, why is the air conditioning shutting itself off? We had a couple of vacuum hoses repaired before we left. Apparently some "varmints" had made their nest in one of them and chewed their way out of another. We were really concerned there may damage to other parts of the vacuum system that had been missed. More reading. Apparently when the engine has to work really hard, like
on steep grades, it shuts off all auxiliary functions, like air
conditioning. Mystery solved and everything is normal.
For my peeps who were wondering why I didn't check in. We were a
bit busy trying to sort ourselves out. Besides, I really meant to catch
up with you when we got the glitches worked out.
We had finished our coffee and breakfast, got cleaned up, both been shopping, when sleeping beauty finally woke up and Coach-Net called back. There was a muffler shop in town that apparently could do the work but they weren't answering their phones. We could take a chance they could look at us today or we could go to West Wendover to a welding shop that could take us for sure.
We decided that we would go to West Wendover. I like sure bets. We were convinced nothing else would break or fall of in the couple of hours it would take to get there. So although Wilbur didn't sound very well, off we went.
Things always look better in the morning.