Monday, March 24, 2008

Red Bay, AL at the Tiffin Factory, Gulf Shores, AL, and back to Red Bay

Today, Monday 3-10, we got into the express bay were you are given two technecions for 3 hours. Then, if you have anything thing else that you want done, you can make an appointment or wait for the next available express bay opening. I know they will not get everything done and we will end up making a standard appointment. They spent three hours with us, but we had to make another appointment for the 26th. By the way, camping is free as long warranty work is being done. There are a couple of things we want to do here, then we are heading down to Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, AL.

On Tuesday Sandy and Patsy, who is parked next to us went for a walk while I washed the motorhome. A couple of hours later she called and said that she was at another motorhome playing Mexican Domino's with some ladies that Patsy knows. That's typical, while the men slave away the women play. I guess that's payback for all the house work they have to do when living in a house.

Sandy and I went on the factory tour on Wednesday. It was nice to be able to walk right next to the units as they were being built. If you had a question you were free to ask the people on the line. In this plant they brought in the rolling chassis and the unit was completed except for the awnings and paint. Painting is done at the Belmont, MS plant. Another couple from Minneapolis happened to be on the same tou with us. When we got back to the motorhome, we had a “bring what you've got supper" with two other couples we had met, Chuck, Lorraine, Steve and Sandy. We had hamburgers, hot dogs, Kielbasa sausage, salad, macaroni salad and camp potatoes. It sure was good.

We went over to the factory today, Thursday the 14th, to visit with Danny Inman in the Sales Department to see what the changes are for 2009. They had the Phaeton information done but it will be a couple of weeks before the Allegro Bus changes would be out. Hopefully, we should be able to see a 2009 Bus before we leave for home. While there, we took the opportunity to visit the building where they are producing their own chassis, the Powerglide.

After the tour we packed up and hit the road for Gulf State Park in Gulf Shores, AL. We left about 1:45 PM, with the intention of stopping around 5:00, but as the storm clouds built up behind us we pushed a little further into the night and droveas far as Mobile, AL,and spent the night at a Love’s truck stop. It was not too bad there as we were able to park along the driveway next to the curb. We did have some traffic going by but at least we did not have trucks idling next to us all night. We would not put it on our list of favorite camping spots, but it was a place to get a few hours of sleep beforemoving on.

In the morning we headed over to Gulf State Park. Along the way we stopped at a Cracker Barrel for Sandy's favorite breakfast meal, blueberry pancakes. Then we were off to the grocery store to restock the groceries. When we got to the park about 11:30 AM they were putting people’s names on a waiting list. We were #17 and so far only 15 sites were open. The procedure here is to have everyone on the list come back at 2:00 PM so they can see how many sites are available. It turned out not to be a problem for us, as some on the list decided to go someplace else which moved us up to #12. It ended up they had 30 campers waiting for 20 sites. This same procedure goes on day after day as this is a great State Park along the coast.

We went for a walk on Sunday morning and is this State Park huge. They have about 200 daily sites and about 300 monthly sites. There must be at least 100 feet of space between each campsite.

Today, 3-17, we went to the post office and painfully sent our tax information to the accountant. Then it was off for some more shopping. This afternoon Sandy went over to wash some rugs at the on site laundry while I did a little reading, which turned into an hour nap. When she came back she asked if I had seen what pulled into the site next to us. Of course, I hadn't noteced since I had been napping the whole time. Turning to look and thinking it probably was a Tiffin product of some sort, especially since she said she almost pulled into the wrong site, I was surprised to see it was a 2005 Lazy Daze Teal Mid Bath, exactly like the one we had. Later in the day we had a chance to visit with the people. They were from Maine and have a son who lives in Maine and a daughter in California. Their children are both expecting, so I think that Lazy Daze is going to get a few miles put on running from coast to coast.

The temperature was 65.8 when I got up this morning, 3-18. It got up to 71 degrees for the high with lots of wind. We went up to Camping World to see if we could find the Mexican Domino’s game. They had some, but not the right one. So I guess we will just have to keep our eyes open. They are predicting a lot of wind and rain overnight so we pulled the slides in for the night.

It did’t rain over night but there were some moderate winds. Today, 3-19, it started raining about 9:30 AM and quit by 12:00 PM. I washed the outside of the motorhome today. The wind has died down to a light breeze with a 65 degree temperature.

It was just a perfect day today, Thursday the 20th. It’s about 70 degrees with just a slight breeze and lots of sun. We took a couple of walks, and just enjoyed the nice weather.

Today is Good Friday. The wind has picked up quite a bit with temps in the mid sixties. We went for a walk this morning and as we approached an intersection a car pulled up next to us. Sandy looked over and waived and recognized it was the couple from Minneapolis that we had met on the Tiffin tour. They were just heading over to Pensacola, FL to tour the Aircraft Museum. We invited them to come over for a visit. It’s kind of nice to run into people that you have met before. Wayne and Nancy came over about 7 PM and we ended up visiting until about 10:30. It turns out Wayne is into quarter scale R/C airplanes, which he also sells. It was interesting to listen to all the detail they get into to make the planes look realistic. Most of his are Mooney’s and P51’s. They told us a lot about their travels to China and Russia.

Today is Saturday and we are heading back up to Red Bay with a stop in Tupelo, MS. This morning it looked like it was going to be the best day here in Gulf Shores since we had been here. When we got up, it was in the middle 50’s with sunshine and it was perfectly calm, and kept getting warmer as the morning progressed. We probably should have stayed another day or so as we do not have to get back in Red Bay until the 25th.

Today is Easter and my Dads birthday, 3-23-23. The last time Easter fell on the date was 1913, and the next time will be 2160. When I was talking with Dad he said he probably would not want to be around for the next time it happens. He must have thought 227 years old was too much. We decided just to head over to Red Bay and get checked in rather then spend Monday here.

This morning is Monday the 24th. We sure know we are back at the Service Center as all the motorhomes start moving around by 6:30 AM for their 7:00 appointments. It's just like being in a truck stop with all the traffic. First thing we did this morning was check in with D Ray Hester, the expediter for service. He said we will probably get in about Wednesday. After we talked with D Ray we went over to the Sales Department and talked with Danny Inman again about the 09 models. He said the first 09 Bus will be out of the paint shop on Thursday so we can look at what the new models look like. This afternoon we went into Tupelo to visit Elvis Presley’s birth place. They also have a park and a museum there. We learned a few things that we did not know before. This is a picture of the two room house in which he was born. The bedroom was in front, the kitchen was in back and outhouse was way out back. His dad, Vernon, built the house for $180 worth of lumber and Vernon, Vernon’s dad and brother providing the labor.

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