Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Cliches On Our Trip to Florida!

If you have numerous trying cliches on the way to your destination, some while you are there, and a big one on your way home and still say it was a trip way beyond your expectations, either you are crazy or you have learned how to handle adversity.  I'd like to think it is the latter! 

Here is a summary of our eventful 1st trip with our new Open Range 5th Wheel.  We were having some engine trouble with our "new" 2005 Ford Diesel before we left.  The mechnical work that was done on it was finished at 6 PM on Monday night and we left at 4 AM on Tuesday morning.  Only 200 miles into our trip to Florida, the wrench light reappeared indicating a Limp Home Mode.  Before we had lost power whenever it came on, but that appeared to be corrected.  We talked to the garage that had done the work before we left and they said it should be fine, just don't push it.  Needless to say, Ken was a bit "anxious" during the drive to Florida.  We didn't have any additional problems, but it did keep us abit on edge.  That was cliche #1.  Then at 280 miles, the bracket we had the dealership put on our 5th wheel before we left home came loose and our bikes were dragging on Route 95.  So, we had to put the damaged bikes in the bed of the truck as well as the bike rack.  We just felt fortunate that the bikes didn't come loose and hit any car.  That was cliche #2.

Cliche #3, was getting the bikes evaluated when we got to Florida and discovering that they were beyond repair.  The search began for new ones.  We do love our new bikes!!!!!

Cliche #4 was taking the truck to a Ford Dealer in Nokomis who told us what they thought it needed.  We didn't like the high estimate nor the way they thought the problem should be solved.  After numerous calls to back home, we found a diesel repair shop in Sarasota from a referral from our mechanic back home.  The owner and his mechanics were wonderful and did a great job for us at a fraction of the cost the Ford Dealer had given us.  We had to go back there for some fine tuning, but it did the job.  The truck handled well on the way home.  So much for Cliche #4.

Cliche #5 was the big one.  The "connection" to a gas pump.  Again, that one had a better ending then what it could have been.  Felt "sick" to see damage to a brand new rig, but again, that is why they are called accidents.

So, when we got home and told some of our RVing friends about the "cliches" we encountered on our trip and what a wonderful trip it was, we realized we must have handled the whole thing pretty well!!!  Warm weather, making new friends, bike riding, great beaches, etc., far outshine the troubles  we had along the way.  We would do it all again!!!

Now "Willie", our 5th wheel is at the dealer awaiting a few parts and repairs.  We will be a lot more selective where we get gas in the future!!!  There are defintely new things to learn when changing from a Class C to a 5th Wheel.

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