October 2002               

            October certainly began in an unusual way, with a hurricane watch.  By the 2nd the weather folks had begun to predict it would make a northerly turn and miss us, going on shore in Louisiana.  We came home from work and secured the outdoor furniture, trashcans, etc and filled the water tank on the TS just in case we would need it.  We also called Camping World in Nashville and ordered slide covers which we will have installed the end of the month after the rally.  Then we went to the grocery store to pick up a few things.  Came home and Millie got her Sewing Guild Newsletter done and ready to mail.

            The storm did not come our way, fortunately.  However, we would rather be prepared than to be caught unexpectedly by one.  Thursday evening after work we went to see a football game with the Katy Tigers playing Alief Hastings Bears.  Our grandson, Chad plays for the Tigers on the sophomore team.  The game was a good one and the Tigers won 21-0.  This is the first game this year we have been able to attend as they are playing at 4:30 and we can’t get to Katy after work in 30 minutes. 

            Friday after work we hitched up and headed to the lake.  Robert met us in Trinity and followed us in to Marina Village.  He spent the night with us and on Saturday morning we got up and after getting dressed, we headed into Huntsville to the Bands of America Competition.  Lacey is in the Guard with the Marcus High School band and they were competing at 9:30.  After a long time in line to get our tickets, we got into the stadium in just in time to see their performance.  Debbie drove up from Katy and met us at the stadium.  We watched another band do their competition and then decided to leave as it was in the 90’s and we were sitting in the sun.  Debbie had seen signs for a big craft fair on the square in town, so the four of us drove over and spent an hour or so browsing the booths.  The guys headed down to check out the antique cars while Debbie and Millie checked out the crafts.  Afterwards, we drove back to the resort and spent the afternoon watching “Mousehunt” and visiting.

            Around 4:00 we went back to Huntsville and had dinner at Chili’s. Just as we finished eating it started dumping rain.  We waited for about 5 minutes and then headed to the cars. We stopped by the Wal-mart and picked up some shop towels so we could dry our seats off in the stadium, as we were going to the finals of the band competition. 

            After a delay of about 45 minutes, the evening finals of the competition got under way.  The rain stopped and it ended up being a good evening for the finals.  This was our first time to attend such an event and even though Marcus High didn’t make the finals, we did enjoy watching the 11 final bands compete.  A school from here in Fort Bend County, Austin High School, won the competition.  If you haven’t seen one of these competitions, you are missing quite a spectacle.  These bands are not the marching bands that we had as students! 

            After the completion was over, Robert headed back to Dallas and we returned to Marina Village and climbed into bed.  Debbie left earlier in the evening for her home in Katy.

            Sunday we slept in a little, had some biscuits for breakfast and listened to CD’s and read for a while.  About 10:30 we began picking up and hitched up.  We left the resort about 11:30 for home.  We were home and had the trailer parked and unhitched by 4:00.

            We spent the next couple of weeks doing regular things like work, laundry and grocery shopping.  We also began loading things into the trailer for the trip to Tennessee. 

            Millie had the afternoon of the 18th off and got some errands run and the remainder of the things loaded that we needed for the trip.  Also had to drop off her car to get the air-conditioning unit repaired.  We will leave it there while we are gone.

            Ann’s 81st birthday was on the 19th, and as we would be gone, we took her out to dinner on the 18th.  She had requested the Old San Francisco Steak House.  We had a great evening together.

            The 19th found us up early and on the road by 7.  We stopped and picked up breakfast at the local McDonalds and headed up highway 59 toward Texarkana.  About an hour and a half from home we hit the rain.  Hard rain, for the next 4 hours.  Made for a slow, nasty drive.  We finally got out of the rain, but it stay gray and gloomy the rest of the day.  We did see a few trees changing color, but not much, it has been too warm. 

            The snowbirds were rolling south; we have never seen so many RV’s on the road! We stopped for the night at a KOA in east Arkansas, and they were full.  We had to continue on to West Memphis to find a place to stop.  We got there about 7 that night.  It was a long day! 

             Sunday we got up to gray skies and drizzle.  Put the slides in and headed for Nashville.  We had drizzle all the way, fortunately no hard rain like we had the day before. 

            We needed an electrical adapter for the rally, so we stopped at Camping World to get one on the way in.  Millie also checked to be sure our slide toppers were in and would be ready for installation on Friday.  We then headed to Lebanon and the rally at the Ward Agricultural Center.  We arrived about 3:30 and we quickly assigned a space.  We had a problem with the hitch and with the help of several others finally got it loose and everything set up.  Most of the rally goers were already there.  What a sight! All those Travel Supremes lined up. After dinner Mille made 2 pumpkin pies and we watched some TV.

                        Monday morning was still overcast.  We had breakfast and headed down to the educational building to register.  We met Kay and received our registration packet and badges.  We were excited to finally be here.  We drove into Lebanon and went to the Post Office, then hunted up a grocery store to stock up.  After lunch at Arby’s, we headed back to the rally site.  We put the groceries away and did some housekeeping.  Dick walked back down to the educational building to check out the vendors and Millie took a nap.  Opening Ceremonies were after dinner and then we were entertained by the duo of “Dave and Daphne” were fun and it was a great evening.

            Tuesday the rally began and SkyMed treated us to donuts, juice and coffee.  At 8:00 the seminars began, ending at 4 with a break for lunch.  We attended them all and enjoyed learning about many new products, etc.  We decided to purchase a TrailAir hitch pin for our 5er.  It will be installed tomorrow.  We also looked through the new Travel Supreme 5er that was on display for us.  It was a quad slide with the new exterior colors. We had a 2-hour seminar with Don Brubaker , head of customer relations with Travel Supreme. He answered a lot of owner questions and gave us some information on what is coming up in the future. After dinner, we were back at the educational building the evening entertainment of “Kristy Deck” who does a phenomenal imitation of Reba McIntire.

            Wednesday the sun came out. We attended  more seminars and our TrailAir pin box was installed.  We are anxious to see how much it improves the ride of the 5er.  Everyone we spoke to who has one says they are great.  Bankston Motor Homes brought over 4 of the new Travel Supreme motor homes which we all had fun touring.   We enjoyed the seminars, learning about new products and the systems on our unit.  The evenings entertainment was “The Stone Ridge Quartet”, a great gospel quartet.

            Thursday we went for a walk, looking over the grounds at the Agricultural Center.  It was overcast but comfortable and we enjoyed the quiet stroll.  Millie checked out the craft show and we attended the Ice Cream Social in the afternoon. At 6:30 everyone met at the Education building for a catered dinner of Pulled BBQ on a bun, potato salad, cole slaw, green beans, chips, and trimmings for the sandwiches, with pecan pie or peach cobbler for desert and iced tea or coffee.  After dinner we had our closing ceremonies, and entertainment by  “Keith Longbotham”. He was a great entertainer and we all had fun enjoying his music and humor. 

            Friday morning after a breakfast of muffins and coffee, everyone began hitching up and heading for their various destinations.  We took our time and let the crowd thin at the dump stations before we hooked up.  After dumping our tanks, we drove to Camping World for our 1:00 appointment.  We got there around 12:00 and checked in.  We were told they were running a little behind and would call us when they were ready.  We did some shopping and had a snack.  Shortly after 1:00, they told us to pull into the bay.  We put the girls in their carriers and sat in the waiting area with them.  Even tho we were in the bay, it was still nearly 2:00 before they started on our unit.  They installed 2 of the slide covers and were working on the 3rd before they decided to test them.  Well, they installed them too low and they wouldn’t work!  Had to take them off, fill the screw holes with silicone and raise the hardware.  Needless to say, we were not happy!!  They finally got them on, but by the time we got out of there it was 7:00 and we had to get to the campground and set up and over to the Grand Ole Opry which started at 7:30.  Millie had walked over to Two Rivers Campground around 5:00 and checked us in, getting our site number, etc, so all we needed to do was park and set up.  Dick got things hooked up while Millie changed clothes, then Dick came in and changed and we headed over to the Opry.  Two Rivers is only 5 minutes away, so we managed to get to the performance only 15 minutes late.  We had first row seats and enjoyed the evening.  Among the entertainers we saw were Hal Ketchum, Mark Wills, T. Graham Brown, Mike Snyder, Trace Adkins and Daryle Singletary.  Afterwards we stopped a Shoney’s for a very late dinner.  It began pouring down the rain while we were eating.

            Saturday was misty as we headed out of Nashville.  We had gray skies and mist most of the way.  The new TrailAir hitch pin seems to be meeting expectations in improving the ride of the 5er.  Millie left a basket of flowers on the table and they barely moved.  We stopped in Arkadelphia for the night at Arkadelphia Campground.  Had dinner at the Crackerbarrel and got a good nights sleep. 

            Sunday was again rainy, but traffic was not bad and we were home in our driveway by 4:30 or so.  It is really getting harder to come back to the house.

            Monday was back to work, also picked up the car from the repair shop.  Dick had to take it back before he even got home; they hadn’t replaced the panel back up under the dash.  Tuesday morning when Millie started to work, she discovered the dash panel still was not replaced properly, so back to the repair shop again! 

            We want to say hello to those of you who sent us notes telling us you have enjoyed our site.  We appreciate hearing from you.  If you see us out there on the highway, give us a wave.  

            We are another month closer to our dream.  See you next month.