“Hey! We’ve got brakes!” “Oh, wait. They’re off”. “Uh uh uh, back on”.
Wham! We hit a big hole in the road. I can see the Fireball bouncing in the sideview mirror. “They’re off”.
Do you have an idea of how our day went today? We were excited when our brake controller flickered to life today a couple of hours after we it the road, indicating that we had brakes. We nearly busted out in song, we were so happy. Short lived, however. During our marathon day (for us, 350 miles is BIG), it faded in and out. What?
John located an RV dealer not too far from our destination campground for the night. When we knew what time our ETA could be, we phoned and asked if they could squeeze us in. If we could get there by 4pm, they could diagnose our problem. Perhaps they could repair – no promises. We arrived at Berryland Campers with 9 minutes to spare! We all piled out of the Firetruck, and were promptly inducted into the service protocol. Long story short – they replaced the 7 pin cord which connects to the truck. The end wired to the Fireball was loose, and one of the wires was apparently connecting intermittently. $111.06 later, we joyously piled back into the Firetruck and headed to the campground. This was at 5:02, the dealership closed at 5pm. We have a appointment at 8am Monday for them to take a look at our water heater – we were told that it might be a control panel – the dealership has them in stock.
We pull back out onto the Interstate. No brakes. Wait! They’re on! Off! On! Flickering!!! You get the idea. We roll into Fontainbleu State Park, discouraged. It’s dark. We may or may not have brakes. This campground, unlike all others so far, is crowded. Our campsite is next to a little trench of water, and there’s a picnic table perched precariously on the bank of this ditch. Can this be ours? Gawd, please no…..but it’s dark, and we can’t be sure. We’ll wait and see how things sort out in the daylight.
While we’re setting up, I hear the propane water heater fire up! What??!? It flares then dies. I ask John – he tells me it’s impossible. But……yes, it is! For a moment, we have hope. Then it’s quiet. The stove also doesn’t work. At this point, I’m keeping John away from sharp objects. Wiggle this connection. Jiggle that one. Tighten this valve. Things spring to life. We truly have no idea why we have hot water, but we figure it we are gentle and don’t abuse things, we may luck out for the weekend.
We had a can of beans (honestly) with some home-cured pork that we had brought along. A cold beer. Coffee. We’re done for the day. As I type this, John’s already snoozing – a tough day for all. To top matters off, someone was blowing off fireworks in the park when we arrived, so we had to bundle Jezzy into her Thundershirt. She did have some moments of pure joy this afternoon in the RV dealership when three adorable young girls converged on her in the service waiting room. They regaled us with tales of their own dog (Riley, the Chinese Crested), two cats, six pigeons, and chickens galore, two of which they walk on leashes). They were all down on the floor, hugging Jezzy and talking to us as fast as they possibly could. It was the highlight of our day.
Will it never end?
No pretty pictures for today. Tomorrow, no matter WHAT – we’re going to put trailer issues behind us and celebrate life in New Orleans. Oysters, gumbo, jazz, chicory coffee, all (hopefully) on bicycles. We don’t care if it’s cold. We just are happy to be here!
We’ll figure the rest out Monday.