Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Reefer

No, not that kind!

We are still cautious/nervous when re-fueling. We try to get fuel in a place we are familiar with. So far we've been able to do so. When we left Jennings yesterday  morning we knew there was a Flying J about 5 miles up the road. We decided to fuel up there, even though it was a few miles out of our way.  We’re looking for someplace easy to get in and out!

We decided to go to the truck area at Flying J,  instead of the RV area. There was a line at the RV area and it looked a little trickier to exit. We pulled over to the truck area and there were lines for DEF fuel. We knew that was not what we needed so we chose the regular diesel....we thought, but we ended up in the DEF fuel line.  So we had to  pull around and try again. Then as we were pulling into the fuel line,  I remembered seeing something on a forum that motor homes don't have a large enough filler tube for the oversized fuel nozzles at truck stops. Unfortunately, I didn't remember that until we were pulling in the second time. Duh!  At that point, I realized why so many rv’s were sitting in line at the rv fueling area and not the truck area.  Oh well, we could always swing back around.

The first thing we did was pull out the nozzle to see if it would fit. It did. Evidently our fill tube is oversized. Good.  Apparently some motor homes are equipped with the larger openings. 

The next step was to put the debit card in to pay.   The machine kept asking questions. This is sure more difficult than at a regular station.  We answered all the questions until it asked if we wanted Reefer or tractor fuel. What?   We certainly didn’t want to put the wrong type of fuel into the motor home. We finally saw something that said rv'ers should choose tractor. I was still a bit nervous though. Once we finished, I did a Google search and learned it was something to do with how the fuel is taxed. Our engine wasn't going to blow up after all. The good thing about fueling where the truckers go is that the fuel pumped lightning fast! We never spent money so fast!  It took $140 in record time.

Once we were on the road I checked our mileage. On our previous trips, we had been running the generator while traveling to allow the house a/c  to run.  When you’re traveling in Florida in the summer the a/c from the coach is not enough, especially on this big thing.  This fill was about 2/3 without the generator. We got 9.47 miles per gallon!  Wow...what an improvement from the 6.5 we had been getting. I didn't think the generator would make that much difference, but unless I wrote down the wrong mileage, that is what we got. I guess we will see next time.

We had an uneventful trip staying on the interstate all the way.  Al normally drives between 60 and 63.  He’s comfortable at that speed and we’re not in any hurry.  We’re very happy with the way this coach handles compared to the old one. We hadn’t done much interstate driving until recently, so we didn’t know how well it would do.  With our old coach, we could definitely feel large trucks coming up from behind.  Al would have to keep an eye on what was coming up behind him and accelerate a bit when they were right behind us.  That kept us from swaying, as long as he noticed them coming.  With this coach, we have no sway from even the largest of trucks.  I guess the extra 5 tons makes a difference!  It’s still not like driving a car, but it is much improved over our 32 foot gas motor home.

I never drove again yesterday.  I guess I’m stalling!  I want to drive with nice perfect conditions and we haven’t found them.  I certainly didn’t want to navigate around Jacksonville, and we didn’t find a good rest area at the right time. Oh well….one of these days.

The GPS gave us great directions, but the campground didn’t have a very good sign at the entrance way, and we missed the turn.  We didn’t see the campground and kept going for several miles.  We came across a low clearance (12’6”) sign.  We probably could have made it under, but since we’ve never actually measured the rig, we weren’t comfortable.  Something we really need to do!  We knew that was the wrong direction and that we needed to turn around anyway.  Of course there was no place to turn around.  We found a place to pull over and Al unhooked the rig while I called the campground to find out where they were.  I was a bit frazzled by then, especially when she couldn’t find our reservation!    She eventually found us though and we got directions.

Al drove the toad back to the campground to make sure he knew where he could locate it.  Then he came back to the where we were parked and found a good place to turn around.  I don’t think we could have turned around with the toad attached, but the motor home did just fine.  We were both a bit stressed out and of course it was all my fault, but we just have to realize that this is just part of the full timing life.

We got to the campground and she proceeded to assign us a site.  I asked if we could pick one and she said with our Thousand Trails plan they only had select sites and there was only one 50 amp site left.  That kind of ticked me off and I was afraid of what kind of site we would get.  She assured me we could get our satellite, but I was more concerned with it being too tight of a fit or having to go down narrow and windy campground roads.  It was a far cry from our recent stay at Crystal Isles Rv Resort.  They  had plenty of room and upgraded our site to one of the best ones there.  This was not the case here!

As it turned out, we are in a large grassy area with plenty of room to maneuver.   There was a Phaeton right next door that was pulled forward into the space.  We were told we had a back-in space.  It took me a minute to realize the way they have them set up.  One goes forward and the other backs in.  It works out okay though, our patios aren’t together and we have an empty lot on our patio side.  Our hook-ups are just real close together.  In fact our sewer connection is right under their bedroom slide!   Maybe not so good for them?

We got set up and then took a very short drive to the beach.  We didn’t realize we were so close to the beach.  That’s an added bonus.  We found a very nice state park with campsites right on the Atlantic.  Pictures later!

We’re off to watch the sun rise over the Atlantic ocean!

9 comments:

  1. Bulow Plantation Ruins State Park is interesting to look around. Take your kayaks...it's a designated Florida Paddling Trail. Also, head up to Palm Coast and take a look around Washington Oaks Gardens State Park. It's beautiful.

    You're in my neck of the woods now! I hope you enjoy your visit!

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  2. Yep, moving down the road is always an adventure!

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  3. Awww!!! The joys of moving that huge machine!! Oh how I remember well but you are right....it is part of the lifestyle. Judy is right....it is an adventure!!

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  4. 90% of the time we fill up in the truck stops. The problem usually is the pressure they use. I have learned that if they have high pressure, our smaller fill line trips the hose off. So when that happens, just have to hand control the hose and fill more slowly. so far we have not had a big problem anywhere.

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  5. everyday is an adventure!!..enjoy!

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  6. See...that's what I like about your blog. You share all sorts of things with us. I don't feel so stupid now when it happens tp us.
    Syl

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  7. When I read "going to watch the sunrise..." I wonder what we will be doing in the mornings when we are on the road. Craig is such a "slug a bed" in the morning and I'm afraid he has corrupted me a bit. This morning he complained when I got up at 8:30! He rolled out after 9:00.

    Sunrise? I might see it, but I know he never will!

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  8. Paula,
    Thanks for the tip. We are right next door to the state park. We tried to go there today but they were closed. We visited Washington Oaks and found a great place to paddle on the Matanzas River but no good place to launch. Any suggestions?

    Gin and Syl
    You want to feel even less stupid? I've got a bunch of other stupid things we've done!!

    Merikay

    I'll bet when Craig retires you can get him up for a sunrise. After all, he can always go back and have an afternoon nap...like we did!

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  9. Good to hear that your rig handles well on the road...now get behind the drivers seat & steer! ;-)

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