The Longdogs

The Longdogs
Willy, Harley (back center), and Gretchen

On the Road…..just want to be on the road again!

Well, actually I am on the road again! It was a sudden decision but then again, many of the best decisions are sometimes made on the spur of the moment. I decided on Monday night that I wanted to go up to Michigan to a Graduation party for my niece’s daughter.  I asked my husband if he wouldn’t like to go since he has several brothers and a sister up there in addition to nieces and nephews and their kids. Since my brother married his sister, their kids are direct nieces and nephews for both of us. Enough of that. He wasn’t interested in making the trip. I even added the enticement of “you could ride your motorcycle and then you would have it to get around with your brothers.”  His response was “I don’t think so…but you could fly up.” Right….fly up and have no car to get around in and the longdogs would disown me. So Tuesday morning, I went over and picked the RV up from storage. Wednesday morning, I was off. Well almost…first I had to meet Helen so that she could give me their card for Alyssa. So I’m making the trip so I can hand deliver the cards. lol.
I headed cross country in Texas avoiding both Austin and Dallas Ft Worth as there is a lot of construction on I-35. It was a bit round about but the roads in Texas are almost all good. We made it as far as Arkadelphia in Arkansas where we pulled into an RV spot behind Cracker Barrel. It was a little warm to start but the Fantastic Fan did a good job of cooling it down for sleeping. Another RV woke me up about 1 AM when he pulled in and let his dogs out without leashes so he had to keep calling them…..hmmmm. But I went back to sleep and when I woke up on the morning there were other RVs there as well. Yes, I did patronize them for a lovely breakfast so the overnight spot was a fair trade and we both benefitted.
Thursday, I called a friend because I didn’t know if they were still up in Michigan or if they were back in Texas. We must have passed each other somewhere in Arkansas. I told her she was heading home to our first for the year 100 degree weather that was moving in and she told me that I had a lot of rain ahead of me. Boy, was she right. It started about noon and rained all day and all night with just a few stops. Once it was so bad that I saw a rest area and pulled in because it was suddenly really hard to see. Once the dachsies were in the RV, I had to change my clothes from the inside out because I was soaked to the skin. I also discovered that I had a leak coming down the antenna shaft onto the bed. Fortunately, only the two sheets and the mattress cover were wet in an 8 inch circle as I hadn’t put the bedspread on the night before when I made the bed. Thank goodness, the memory foam didn’t get wet. I pulled off the damp linens and hung them around to dry. A piece of plastic and a small pan were placed under the appropriate location. I hoped and prayed and was pretty sure that the drips were coming straight down the antenna. Then we had a late lunch and it slowed long enough for us all to get back into the truck damp instead of soaked.
It continued to rain for the rest of the day and I made the cardinal RV sin…..I kept driving way too long. Walmart just before Terra Haute Indiana finally provided a convenient stop where I didn’t have to back in and unhook in the rain…..a great reason for stopping there. It stopped raining long enough for the dachsies to get a short walk and me to get permission to stay. When I finally headed off to bed, I was way too tired, my arms and neck were aching, and I was shivering (it was not that cool out). I added two blankets, took some Tylenol PM, and laid there until I finally quit shivering. It was just plain exhaustion as driving in rain for that long makes you grip the wheel tighter than you think even though there was no problem driving. Of course, once relaxed enough, the blankets had to come off as it wasn’t cool enough for them but it did continue raining all night.
I called a friend I haven’t seen in several years in Indianapolis to see if she might be available for brunch as she teleworks. It turned that she had a conference call lined up and wouldn’t be available until 1PM but I decided that I needed a much shorter driving day after Thursday and breaking it in half would be even better. I took my sweet time heading out in the morning since I knew I had less than 4 hours to drive and the rain finally quit an hour after I headed out. Mary Beth lives on the far side of Indy in Fishers. She gave me directions to her exit and a large mall where I managed to find enough room to park the truck and 5th wheel near Penney’s. She arrived a few minutes later and we were off to Olive Garden for a very long relaxed lunch. It was great catching up and visiting. I got back on the road at 4PM to miss the rush hour out of Indy. About 3 hours later, another Walmart conveniently beckoned us and the dachsies and I enjoyed dinner and a quiet evening relaxing together. Of course, relaxing is relative because the dachsies relax the entire time we are driving.
I arrived in Port Huron Michigan at my sister-in-law’s at about 1 PM and got to experience her total surprise when she answered the door. Yes, it was a good surprise not a bad one. My brother passed away a couple of years ago so it was a little strange to not have him show up from work. Another niece and her two young kids are currently living with my sister-in-law so it is still a busy and active place. I got the RV parked in the backyard and an electric hookup to a separate line in the polebarn. I won’t use the A/C but it will work fine for my fridge, led lights, and fantastic fan so I am set. Nadine has two dogs and three cats at her house so the dachsies have their own quarters in the RV and I have my escape too when the overload gets to be too much for my ashma medicine to handle.
Just a word about the roads coming up here. All I can say is thank heavens for Texas roads. They are all almost always in great shape from the expressways to the backroads. Arkansas, Illinois, and Indiana sure don’t fit that description. They are rough enough to jar your teeth loose. Michigan has always been bad too but I have to say that this time I did encounter some nice smooth stretches coming along much of I-69. One could probably grow rich if one invested in the orange construction barrel company as they are lined up for miles and miles even if absolutely no work appears to be going on. Concrete roads are just the pits with their constant buckboard effect. Enough said.
My arrival at the party tomorrow will be a surprise to the rest of the family. More later


  1. Wow. That's a lot of driving in a short time.

  2. I cannot believe you covered that much territory in such a short period of time. Your babies are sure good travelers. Have a fantastic time. Those kinds of surprises are so much fun. Hopefully you get to slow down going home but I will tell you, you're singing my song.

  3. Wow, when you decide to go somewhere, look out, world.

  4. That is just so cool that you just took off on the spur of the moment like that - love it!

  5. Aaahhh, GF, that is so hard on you! I know the fur kids don't really care, Mom's driving us somewhere! Visit lots. Have fun. Do what you wanna do! Treat it like a Long Vacation! I am pushing when I do 200 miles a day. Would love to see you in KS.

  6. Wow, what a ride! I used to do stuff like that, but not since I've been in an RV.
    i like it better when someone is with me.
    Enjoy the family and party.

  7. Surprise road trips are the best.


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