Sunday, April 28, 2013

# 29 Wildwood, Florida

We have been located at the Alliance Coach Service Center's campground for the past week.  They also offer camping to anyone who would like to stay but almost all of the motorhomes here are waiting for service.

Our technician came 3 mornings this past week to get the MH around 7:15 am and he kept it until 5:00pm each day.  He's almost finished with our "outside and engine maintenance/repair" list.  The only items left are to install the new skylight and resealed door window next week.  Beginning Monday, the interior wish list gets started: cabinet work for our flat screen TVs and replacing the carpet in the living room area for Pergo flooring.

This has been an interesting process for us.  Ronnie has learned a lot watching and talking with the technicians (they allow you to go back into the bays while they are working) and I have learned some things visiting with the other RVers in the lounge/waiting area.  Little Boy has been so good.  He has mostly slept in his large pet carrier and even allowed curious lookers to peep in at him.  We've been  leaving in the middle of the day and riding around in The Villages (a very nice retirement/golfing community). This time gives Little Boy a chance to stretch and go into his litter box.

We hope next week goes as smooth for us as this past week.  We met one couple that has been here for 3 weeks now.  Yikes.....

Saturday, April 20, 2013

# 28 Bye Bye Bay Bayou

We leave this very nice RV park tomorrow.  It has been an enjoyable stay, with the exception of the MH repairs.  We were glad that we got here when we did and if we had to have some mechanical issues, we couldn't have been in a nicer place.  There have been record temperature highs here the past few days so we have enjoyed floating in the pool.  We have met several nice couples, some full-timers here and others passing through, just like us.  We hope to come back here again someday.  This campground is so convenient to downtown Tampa, the beaches, nature areas and shopping.  They have planned activities, social gatherings and clean buildings and surroundings.  Tonight is a pool party with Hawaiian cookout.  Yep, we're going.

Each time I rode the bike and did my morning walk I got to enjoy many of the full-time residents' flowers and gardens.  I was told that very rarely does it get below freezing here.
The lady that owned this poinsettia said it was a year and a half old.  

These were her orchids.  They're growing outside!  Just amazing to me.
Her gardens were beautiful.  I asked her permission to take these photos.  Many of the year-round residents here had these nice patios filled with tropical potted plants and tropical-type plants just growing in the ground. 

Our site wasn't quite as lush but we still enjoyed it.  I took Little Boy out for walks too.  

Bay Bayou RV Park is located near the Upper Tampa Bay Nature Preserve.   They have canoe and nature trails to enjoy and explore.  We just walked around and looked the scenery, boat ramp and nature center. 
We hope to come back here one day so maybe then we'll do the canoe trip.  We didn't get in the art museums visits I wanted either.  It seemed good most days for us to just relax.  We did go back to Tarpon Springs for a quick drive-thru (we spent the turn of the century there) and took in a visit to the nearby Camping World.  There is a lot to see and do in this area and that gives us another reason for us to come back to spend a winter in this part of Florida.

We are headed to Wildwood, Florida tomorrow.  We are scheduled to be at the Alliance Coach Service Center campground tomorrow afternoon.  Our service appointment is for Monday, April 22 at 7:15 am.  We have a list of items for them to check and we are getting our TV cabinets remodeled to fit in flat screens. We planned to come down here to this service center at some point when we purchased the coach back in November 2012.  We are looking forward to seeing the improvements to our home-on-wheels.

Sunday, April 14, 2013

# 27 Tampa, Flordia

We arrived in Tampa on Wednesday, April 10.  We are staying at the Bay Bayou RV Park.  I am amazed at the beautiful plants everywhere.  Plants that I had to keep in a pot, in the house, grow in the ground here.  I had noticed that before on other trips we've made to Florida but it never ceases to amaze me.

These "snake plants" are growing right out of the ground.  I had to grow mine in pots.
This orchid caught my attention too.
Several people were growing poinsettias.

This impatient plant was growing in a big wash tub. 
We haven't made any day trips yet.  We've been busy working on a few things.  Ron's been troubleshooting a low voltage issue with the motorhome and I've been doing the usual house work and helping him.  Unfortunately, Ron discovered that the alternator and battery isolator had gone out.  Using the Internet and his tool chest, we were able to replace the alternator (with a rebuilt one :+$).  The isolator will not be here until Tuesday, so we will not know until then if that issue has been solved.

Today we went to the Clearwater Beach area, specifically Sand Key and just relaxed.  It was cool, very nice but crowded.

I would love to see some of the outstanding art museums in the area.  On my list are:  St. Pete Museum of Fine Arts, the Salvador Dali Museum and the Chihuly Collection at the Morean Arts Center.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

# 26 Southern Drawl

This is one city where I feel a little more at home.  No one here has asked me, when they heard me speak,  "Where are you from?  The south?"

We were fascinated with the Ravenel Bridge.  It is just amazing and beautiful. We drove over it twice and even found the river park under it where you can walk the bridge. We rode over the old bridge 27 years ago on a motorcycle. 

We strolled the Waterfront Pier area.

......and took several pictures.

The weather was perfect.  The swings there were our favorite.  They reminded us of our swing we used to have on our front porch...except these were much larger and with a better view.

We had lunch at the Southend Brewery.  That place had excellent beer and tasty food.  We enjoyed the Carolina BBQ Sandwich with a fried pickle.

We rode around town on the free trolly. We were able use that and do pretty much what we wanted.  It was crowded however and it got worse as the day progressed. 

You just couldn't ask for better weather in Charleston.  It was cool, breezy and with little humidity.  The Brewery could have their doors and windows open and offer a cool atmosphere.

We enjoyed brousing the City Market as well.

It seems good to see flowers blooming after the chilly March we just experienced.  It was one of the nicest days we've had in a long time.
 We then drove out to Sullivan's Island where we saw several restaurants with outdoor seating.  We noticed a lot of people out, early, enjoying dinner.  We thought we would stop at one with a water front view for a refreshing beverage.  We then found out it was "Happy Hour".
Hey, we remember those.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

# 25 Charleston, SC

We made it to Oak Plantation Campground in Charleston, SC.  I am the navigator...and I told Ron to turn right leaving Willow Tree.  Opps...We should have turned left.  We had to travel out of the way probably 45 minutes or so.  Oh well, I'll try to do better next time.

We're planning to go into Charleston tomorrow.  It's been a while since we've been to this city.  The weather is warn and the dogwood trees and azaleas are blooming.  Nice.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

# 24 Long, SC

We are camping tonight at the Willow Tree RV Resort in Long, South Carolina

We said "See you in a few weeks." to my Mom this morning.  We have had a great week "mooch-docking" in her yard the past 10 days.  We did many errands, did a lot of good eating and had a great time with her.  I got in visits with my sister, Lydia, my brother John and his 2 children.

We'll enjoy a steak on the grill tonight and relax.  We're planning on leaving tomorrow but we are not sure of our next destination.  Check back in to see.....