Saturday, September 29, 2012 (Valley of the Rogue State Park, Rogue River, Oregon)

Well, not a very exciting day today, I’m afraid...Steve was sick!  Doesn’t he know that is not allowed?!  He said he woke up at about 3 a.m. with stomach cramps and was just feeling really lousy...tired, no appetite.  Needless to say, he spent most of the day in his recliner chair watching TV and snoozing.

I, on the other hand, spent almost 5 hours doing laundry.  With only one washing machine available (the other one was in use) and dryers that didn’t seem to want to heat up above “medium” took forever! Really odd for the dryers...usually dryers in Laundromats practically fry your clothes, they get so hot.  But I think all of the equipment had seen better days...guess I shouldn’t complain too much; not many State parks have laundry facilities.

It was another hot one today...the high was 87F/30C...with the forecast for tomorrow the same and 93F/33C Monday.  Very nice that we have 50 amp power service and can use the air conditioner freely!

That was about it for our day.  Hopefully, Steve feels better tomorrow so that we can hit the road as planned!

Friday, September 28, 2012 (Valley of the Rogue State Park, Rogue River, Oregon)

What an incredibly lazy morning we had today...and it was great!  It was noon by the time we were ready to head outside and get some exercise.  We had our runners on and we were going to get out for a good walk and explore the park trails.

But first we had to figure out how to get from the camping loops to the paths.  We saw a paved path and cut through an empty site and walked on it until we came to an information board with a map.  That’s where we discovered that there is a great bike path that follows the river for miles (our neighbour later told us that when finished, the path is going to stretch 50 miles between two communities)...we might have to offload our bikes and go for a ride.  But today we were walking so we followed the bike path for 15 minutes and then turned around.

Once back at the information board, we found the Riverside Trail, a hiking trail that follows the river somewhat closer to the river’s edge.  Although both the bike path and hiking trail follow the river, there is dense vegetation along the river edge so you only get glimpses of the river.  However, the hiking trail does have the occasional trail down the steep bank to the river.


We were back at the trailer by 1:00...a good hours walk and it felt great to get out for some exercise after all of the sitting, eating and drinking that we have done over the past couple of weeks.  I would love to have offloaded the bikes and gone for a long bike ride but it was just getting too hot out...I was sopping wet by the time we got back.  It was well into the 80’ we headed into the trailer where Steve had the air conditioner on...ahhh...

I spent the rest of the afternoon on the laptop researching routes towards southern Utah (and camping spots), answering emails, chatting to Chris on MSN...oh, and baking cookies (I tried a wheat-free chocolate chip recipe...they were a little dry, so I will have to adjust).  Steve was outside in the shade reading...for awhile, but eventually came in to cool down.

Just after 4:00 we went outside with our drinks.  Non-alcoholic beer and wine...we love our happy hours but have decided to cut back a bit on our alcohol intake—especially after our recent indulgences!  Steve really likes the O'Doul's Amber beer brother-in-law Don turned him onto...thanks Don.  Me...well, I haven't found a white wine replacement that I really like.  The one I am trying right now is okay but a little too sweet. We chased the shade (moving our chairs twice) for about an hour and then headed back inside.

We had a very “laid-back” enjoyable day...tomorrow, we would like to get out for another walk.  I’d love to off load the bikes and go for a long bike ride but since we are leaving Sunday, I had better get some laundry done.  Hmmm....we’ll see...

Thursday, September 27, 2012 (Guaranty RV Service and Travel to Valley of the Rogue State Park, Rogue River, Oregon)

It was just before 8 a.m. when we were met by John, our service rep at Guaranty RV, who told us that their audio/visual specialists were all booked up for today.  Hmmm...very disappointing since that was the main reason we had returned.  On the other hand, not critical...they had over booked their appointments to accommodate the RV-Dreamer Rally attendies and we have been without the air-antenna working for over 2 years since we had had the satellite installed.  It’s one of those things that we have wanted fixed but had just never gotten to...and while here in Oregon we are in the maintenance/”fix it” mode (with all the others from the rally)...and with no sales tax, we thought we would get it all done.  Oh well!  There are still a couple of things that we wanted looked at from our visit here on Tuesday...a visual inspection of the front landing gear that they “over-ran”...and a very shoddy finishing job on the sealant tape on the slider (instead of finishing off at the edge trim and caulking it, they ran the tape about 6 inches down the side).

John did the usual write-up of the work to be done and we settled in the waiting room where I set up the laptop.  I got yesterday’s blog posted while Steve read his book.  It wasn’t long before we were joined by DJ...and a little later, Gina.  DJ was having her truck serviced next door at Guaranty GMC and Gina was having the roof on her motorhome re-sealed.

Monte and Rose popped in mid-morning to say goodbye to us all.  The work was complete on their Montana fifth-wheel and they were just waiting to hear from the extended warranty people.  Rather than hang around waiting for that call, they decided to go over to AM Solar and talk to them about a solar system.  They will have to return to Guaranty to “settle-up”...hopefully the work is all covered by the warranty company...good vibes are being sent your way!

Just before 10:00 I got a call from Willamette Drapery...I had called the mobile company to come by and re-string one of our day/night shades.  Steve met with him and took him over to the trailer which by this time had been moved to a spot over in the camping area...Guaranty was finished.  Steve spent the next 45 minutes waiting for the paperwork and “finishing up” with, we didn’t have to pay anything more but they still had the paperwork that needed to be done.  After the bad start to our service, over all we were happy with the way the staff dealt with the issues that came up and we don't recall hearing anything negative from the other rally attendies about their service.

It was 10:45 when Steve returned to the waiting room to tell me that we were all done and that Tim was just finishing up the blind.  I packed up the laptop and after “see you again” hugs with DJ and Gina, we headed back to get hitched up.

After a stop at the sani-station, we were on our was about noon.  We headed south on highway 99 to Eugene where we connected with I-5 towards Grants Pass.  We knew we wanted to go as far as Grants Pass and had found Valley of the Rogues State Park...about 10 miles further along the I-5 in Rogue River.

Getting a run at the hill...doesn't look all that steep at this point...

Beautiful Oregon scenery...

Still very smokey/hazy in the distance...

Buster worked hard...managing the mountain passes well and after a stop off exit 61 to pick up the new satellite dish tripod from George at (he had suggested we meet there since our rig was too big to navigate the streets to his location...thank you, George!), we arrived at the State Park just before 4 p.m.

I had contacted the park to enquire about the sites, just to ensure that they would have some large enough for us.  The fellow said that our best bet would be loop B, the “first come/first serve” sites and that yes, they have lots of big rigs in the park.  When we arrived, we found that the roads in the loops were rather narrow but manageable. The back-in sites, while some would be long enough for the fifth-wheel, they were too short for the truck too. 

But we managed to find a pull-through that B20...and got leveled off...without unhitching.  The park is close to the I-5 so there is some distant traffic noise but the sites are large with plenty of space from your neighbour...and we have full-hookups (including sewer) for $24/night.  There is even a laundry room!

One thing we just couldn’t get over was how hot it was outside...32C/90F!  And a look at the forecast indicated that the temps over the next few days in the Rogue River area were going to be from the mid 20sC/80sF to low 30sC/ this is the end of September!  So we decided to just stay here until Sunday...after spending the last few nights in parking lots and moving each day, it will be nice to just stay put.

Steve unpacked his new tripod and after moving the dish 4 times, he managed to lock onto a satellite.  He was concerned that we wouldn’t get a signal when we chose this site due to the trees but with perseverance, he did it! The tripod is a surveyers type with adjustables legs, compass, level, and an optional high wind tie down system (for Arizona.)

We had a rather late dinner (due to trying to find that satellite signal) and then relaxed to watch some season premiers on TV.  We are looking forward to sleeping in and having a relaxing morning before exploring the park tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012 (AM Solar, Springfield, Oregon)

I was up bright and early this morning...5:23 to be exact!  I just felt that getting up, sitting with my coffee and working on our blog sounded like a better idea than laying there wide awake.  Besides I had had roughly 7 hours of sleep...since I fell asleep and missed the end of Survivor.  Steve was nice, though, he told me who got voted off.  He’s not always so obliging when I fall asleep and miss the ending of a show!

It was right at 8:30 when Steve pulled the rig into the service bay so they could get started.  The first thing they did was assess our current system...not so good...seems that Camping World just isn’t the best place to get a solar system installed.  Kinda makes sense now but 27 months ago we thought that Camping World was the “end all—be all” of the RVing world!  We don’t have mega RV stores where we come from and thought that it was the absolute best place to go.  Well, we have learned a lot over the past couple of years...guess you could say we were rather naive “newbies” back then.

In the meantime, I took our laptop into the customer waiting area.  What beautiful facilities they have here...not only are the grounds beautiful, well manicured and maintained but the building is lovely with a great waiting area.  They have a variety of RV related literature as well as coffee, tea and a small fridge with assorted cold drinks. 
They also offer free I set up the laptop and got started...yes, I’m still working on that blog!
A little while later, Steve came and joined me in the waiting room.  He said that Dave was writing up an estimate.  Then Dave came in with the news...bottom line is that to do it all properly, all they could use are the two 123 watt (fixed mount) solar panels we already had—they would add two new 100 watt solar panels with tilt mounts and have to totally re-wire the works plus replace our existing control panel (that gives limited information) with a new full function battery monitor and remote controller. Apparently Camping World used the wrong gauge wire for their installation which also meant that additional panels couldn’t be added.  Nothing like almost paying for a solar system twice!  Oh well...”it is what it is”!

The rest of the day was spent in the waiting room while the work was being done.  I managed to get completely caught up on our blog...well the writing is done but I can’t post until I download pictures from my camera (and the cord is packed away inside the trailer).  Steve contacted the company in Grants Pass that sells the tripod (for the satellite dish) he is is website that he found it on...   We will be picking it up on Friday.  After that, he did lots of research on the internet using the iPad...everything from helmets (yes, we need to get new ATV, money, money) to free/inexpensive camping areas (which we will need after all of the money we have spent this month) in the Bryce/Zion Canyons areas.

They have a viewing area upstairs where you can go watch the fellows working on your rig's roof...

Deb, one of the owners of the company has a neat little electric car...

It was going on 4:00 when Mike came in to tell us the work was all done.  Steve went out with him to get a lesson on the new system while I packed up the laptop.  One neat feature on the battery monitor is it gives you a percentage of battery power left...sort of like a fuel gauge.

After pulling the rig out of the service bay and around to the front of the building where there was still some direct sunshine, Mike checked the readings on the control panel and was looks like it is doing what it is supposed to.  We went inside, paid our bill and said our goodbyes.  We were very impressed with our whole experience at  AM Solar  and would highly recommend them to anyone looking for a solar system for their RV. Owners Greg and Deb Holder have great staff and a pretty good place to camp while you wait for your service.

We arrived back at the Guaranty RV Service parking lot at about 5:30...pretty much exactly 24 hours after we had left.  This time we set up “camp” right in front of the reception come 8:00 a.m. tomorrow, we will be ready for them.  Hopefully, they will be ready for us!

After a quick set up, we walked down to see if Rose and Monte were still here...yup!  But the work had been done on their slider and hopefully they will be on their way tomorrow.  They were right in the middle of their dinner so we said we would see them later and we went back to our trailer to get our dinner on.

That evening we had another impromptu campfire gathering around our ‘Campfire in a Can’.  We chatted with Monte and Rose about their day and then Gina and DJ (who were camped across the street) came over and then a little while later, Mike and Nancy also joined us.  We are really stretching this rally out! The good weather has also helped make this type of camping more bearable.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012 (Guaranty RV, Junction City, Oregon)

Although we weren’t booked in until 10:30, Steve thought he would go across to the Guaranty RV Service reception just after 8:30 and see if, by chance, they could get us in a little earlier.  He came back saying that they radioed the forklift driver, so we’d better hurry!  So I just left the dirty dishes and put the covers over the sink and got everything ready so we could put the sliders in.

Steve put our chairs out beside the truck...and there we sat...for over an hour...waiting.  John, our service rep, finally came sauntering over shortly after 9:30.  He went over everything with Steve...check brakes, repack bearings, fix a small tape strip on the slider that needed replacing, and re-connect the air-antenna (it had been disconnected when the fellows installed the satellite system a couple of years ago).

With all the paperwork taken care of, it was just a matter of the forklift coming over to pick up the fifth-wheel and take it over to the service bay.  I left Steve to wait for the fellow to come since he would have to take it off blocks...I took the laptop and headed over to the Customer Service Waiting Area that was in the parts store.

Well Steve waited and waited...the forklift didn’t come until I guess they really couldn’t get started on it earlier after all!

I joined Rose and Monte in the waiting area...they were nice enough to share their table...and after setting up my laptop, got started on writing our journal.  Rather than write and post our blog daily during the rally, I had decided to wait until the end and just do a recap.  Sounded like a good idea at the time but now I had a lot of writing to do...and a lot of pictures to post!

A little while later, Steve came in and sat down...he was not very happy!  The service tech had run the front landing gear too high and now they and the rear stabilizers would not work at all!   Lovely!  This is not a good start!  Luckily, the end result (much later in the day) was okay...apparently there is a reset button that the techs did not even know about.  Thank-you Monte for pointing this out to them!!  Hmmm...doesn’t really instill a lot of trust in the techs...

Rose and Monte also have a Montana fifth-wheel...just a different model.  They are at Guaranty RV because one of their sliders does not fit properly...very bizarre...of course, when you’re looking at fifth-wheels the sliders are out.  It wasn’t until getting started on their full-time adventure that someone mentioned that the decals didn’t line up.  Keystone, the manufacturer of their rig, will not cover anything because the rig is out of warranty.  Luckily they purchased an extended warranty so now they are just waiting to see what that will cover...hopefully, LOTS!  They are not very happy campers...and have no idea how long getting the issue resolved is going to take.  We wish them good’s a tough start to their new lifestyle!

While we were there, Gina and DJ...two of the solo RVers from the rally...arrived to get estimates for work on their RVs.  It was about time for lunch, so the six of us (Rose, Monte, Gina, DJ, Steve and I) walked to a little funky cafe about 3 or 4 blocks away.  We enjoyed lunch chatting nonstop with our new friends.

After lunch, I returned with my laptop to the waiting area to continue writing while the others hung around outside chatting.  Steve came in and out...monitoring the status on our rig.  It was going on after 4:00 when John came in to say that the work on the slider would be finishing up soon.  By the way, the brakes, bearings and suspension all looked fine and the wheels were all back together...the tires had also been inflated to 80 psi. Unfortunately, they had not had time to work on the air-antenna issue.  Since we had an appointment at AM Solar first thing tomorrow morning, we would have to reschedule to have the rest of the work done.  We will be back first thing Thursday morning.

It was 5:00 when we left the service area after paying our bill...and headed over to where Monte and Rose along with Mike and Nancy had their rigs for service.  They were there for another night.  Gina was having the work done on her motor home on Thursday so she was set up in the camping area across the street.

After hugs and handshakes...and promises to stay in touch, we went back to get hitched up.  That went smoothly and we were on the road by 5:30 heading to AM Solar in Springfield.  We had arranged with them to stay overnight so that we would be there first thing in the morning.  About 35 minutes later we were pulling into their beautiful brick driveway...what lovely property they have right beside a small lake (well, apparently it’s really just a slough).  We were greeted by Mike who directed us up in front of the right-hand bay door...he also had a 50 amp power cord waiting for us.  Unfortunately, the cord didn’t quite reach our cord, so we had to opt for a longer30 amp power cord to connect to our 50 amp cord...that works just fine for us!

We did our usual minimal one-night stop set up and were soon sitting outside on the lovely brick driveway enjoying a cocktail before dinner.  We made a phone call to Rob and Angie (our son and daughter-in-law) and had a great chat with both of them.  Rob leaves for a moose hunting trip this Friday and is quite excited about it.  Of course, we wanted to wish him luck and stay safe!  Angie’s pregnancy is progressing well...only 4 more months to go!

After a quick dinner, we called Nadine and Mike (Steve’s sister and brother-in-law)...all seems well with movement on Dad’s house yet though.  House sales have slowed down...figures...

Since we don’t have the air-antenna working yet...and of course, we didn’t set up the satellite dish, we have no TV to watch before bed...but we did have the season opener of Survivor to watch.  I had downloaded it since we missed it last Wednesday night (we didn’t get a chance to watch much TV at all last week...far too busy with the rally!!) 

September 17 – 24, 2012 (RV-Dreams Rally, River Bend Resort, Harrisburg, Oregon)

What an absolute blast we have had over the past week!  We’ve been far too busy to post daily blogs so I decided to just wait and do a recap at the end of the week.

There were 73 attendees (six of which were “solos”) at the rally and the facilities at River Bend Resort were excellent and the involvement from a local RV company—Guaranty RV was incredible.  They provided an hour of free on-site service to all attendees to get minor issues dealt with as well as a free roof inspection...not to mention, the day they provided for us at their facilities (read on to find out more about it).

The rally didn’t actually start until  Tuesday (18) so on Monday, Steve and I thought that we would drive the 20 miles into Eugen (Springfield, actually...a suburb) to the Cabelas store.  It was a very smokey day (from the fires in Washington)...

This time it was Steve who came out with lots of stuff...he now has his birthday present and Christmas present...outfitted with Simms Gortex chest-waders and a 4-piece fly rod and case that can go on the quad.  I guess it wasn't all about Steve....I finally got the lifejactket I wanted!  Rather than the bulky type, it is quite streamline and inflates automatically when it hits the water.

After Cabelas, we stopped at Costco so that I could order my contacts and pick up a few things...we also had to have lunch, of course!  On our way home we stopped at a Chevron station to fuel up with diesel...the cheapest Steve was able to find in the area at $4.19/gallon cash ($4.29 credit).  I went inside to get cash out of the ATM but after paying the admin charge of $4 for two transactions, I really don’t know if it was worth it...probably should have collected our TD travel points instead by charging it.  The beautiful Willamette River...

Quite a few rally attendees had arrived during the day and that evening we all met around the fire pit so that Linda and Howard could solicit some volunteers for various things that would need to be done tomorrow before rally registration started tomorrow afternoon.  With so many people, we didn’t bother with a one would have been able to get anywhere near it!

Tuesday morning I drove the truck into Junction City (5 miles) to Safeway so that I could finish grocery shopping.  When I got home I put the groceries away and went over to the banquet room to see what I could do to help Linda.  I spent the next hour or so separating name tags and stuffing them into plastic holders. Steve was put to work putting together info sheets with everyones name that could be displayed on their rigs as RV-Dreams attendies. It was very enjoyable working with fellow volunteers...just the start of a lot of great friendships that were starting to blossom.

Registration opened at 2:00 and Rose and I were at the start of the greeting table welcoming people and handing out name tags, lanyards and RV-Dreams carry-all bags.

With only a few stragglers left to come in, we were all dismissed just after 4:30...time for a little relaxation before getting ready for the catered dinner of BBQ Pulled Pork & Chicken.

Howard and Linda always open their rallies with a song...sung by Linda...”Me and My Gang” by Rascal Flatts (I believe). 

After welcoming everyone to the rally, it was time to start calling table numbers for dinner...our table was first!

We had a great evening...the icebreaker was especially funny—2 teabags taped to a baseball cap and you had to swing the bags up so they landed on the brim and stayed there.  Not a very easy task let me tell you but it was sure fun watching people trying to do it!  Here is Linda showing everyone how to do it...

...and Steve trying it out at his table (we were all separated to random tables)...

The “champions” from each table were then called up to have a “playoff” was all too funny!  Steve was up for his table...(see him?...he's second from the right)...

Wednesday morning started with coffee and donuts at 7:30 followed by a seminar put on by SkyMed Insurance.  The rest of the morning continued with seminars put on by Howard and Linda...’No Right Way To Full-Time—Evaluating The Options’; ‘Emotional Aspects of the Full-timing Decision’; and ‘What Does It Cost to Full-Time?’

Howard and Linda...

After lunch on our own, the afternoon continued with a two-part session of ‘RVing Basics’.  A lot of information packed into a day and even if we have been full-timing for over 27 months now, we still learned something from each seminar...there was always some tidbit of new information.

“School” ended at roughly 4:30 and we all sauntered back to our rigs (or hotel rooms...there were a few attendees who had booked rooms, either because they chose not to bring their RV or because they hadn’t yet bought one).  I was rather exhausted but we had an hour and a half to rejuvenate before returning to the banquet room for a catered dinner of pizza and salad.

After dinner, there was a “Show & Tell” of favourite RV accessories, gadgets and toys.  Lots of interesting...and some very funny...things were shared!

Thursday morning started with coffee at 7:30 again.  The seminars this morning were ‘Understanding RV Extended Warranties’; ‘Buying an RV—Pros, Cons & Must Haves’; and ‘RV Weight & Tire Safety’.  I played hooky so that I could get 2 trays of lasagne made for the potluck dinner tonight.  I also managed to get 3 loads of laundry done at the same time so it was a very productive morning for me.

I joined in for the rest of the day’s seminars (okay, most of them)...’Working on the Road’; and ‘Boondocking Basics’ but left Steve to attend ‘Solar Savvy with Greg Holder from AM Solar’ alone.  I headed back to the fifth-wheel to put the final touch on the lasagne (i.e. cheese) and get them in the ovens....I put one in Linda’s oven since they are right next door...thanks for the use of your oven, Linda!

That evening was the potluck dinner and what an array of dishes we had!  So much food and soooo good!

After dinner it was “game time”...Road Tested is an RVing twist on the old popular TV game show The Newlywed Game...and it was too funny!  Of course, Steve and I were among the first contestants...we didn’t get one answer right!  I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time...what great fun!

What a day we had on Friday!  It was cloudy for a change which was just fine but very unusual after the long stretch of sunshine that we had been having.  Two big motorcoaches arrived to transport those who did not want to drive themselves over to Guaranty RV.  They have over 300 employees, 36 work bays and sixty million in inventory (a third of what they used to have when the economy was better) on 28 acres!

There we were escorted into a big conference room where there was coffee, donuts, muffins, etc.  After filling up, we all took seats for their “RV 101” seminar.  It was very well done with some of the best explanations on everything from batteries to black water tanks.  Not being particularly interested in any of that stuff, I found myself very impressed with the way Tim was able to explain things using terms that were both humorous and understandable.

After the seminar we were transported down to another “Guaranty RV facility” about a mile down the road where we were treated to a wonderful BBQ lunch.

After lunch we had a choice of going to a driving course where we could test drive Class A’s, Truck & Fifth-Wheel, and Truck and Travel Trailer; or tour their many locations in the Junction City area looking at motorhomes, fifth-wheels, trailers, etc.  We chose to go over to their fifth-wheel location and take a look.

We saw some nice fifth-wheels but not any that I would have preferred over ours.  Once finished there, we went back to the motorcoach location (where we had lunch) and looked through some of the high-end!  What do you think? Does it suit me?

After our afternoon, Guaranty RV was going to host a social hour for us...nice! It was going on 3:30 when we went back inside and sat down at a table to was a little early, but the girl setting up the table and getting the beer and wine ready asked Steve if he would like a drink.  So, there ended up being a number of us that got an early start on the social “hour”!

We spent a couple of hours chatting about our day and enjoying beer/wine along with some cheese and cold was a great day!  They also gave very “interesting” shirts away...they were supposed to be for those who test drove the RVs but I managed to get one too.  Well, we girls had quite a blast modelling our new shirts!

What fun!

Steve and Howard...

Steve, Dianne, Howard and Linda...

Saturday morning’s seminars started with a couple that Steve and I decided really didn’t pertain to us since we live in Canada...‘Understanding RV Insurance’ and ‘Selecting a “Home Base” and Insurance Considerations’ we skipped them.  It allowed us to have a slow start to the day.  At 10:30 we headed over for the last couple of seminars...’Internet on the Road’ and ‘Choosing Campgrounds/RV Parks’.

Saturday afternoon was lots of fun as those who wanted to open up their RVs for Open Houses.  It was a great way to see other types of RV’s and what modifications had been made to them.  We had our rig open from 2:00 to 3:30 with lots of people coming through...when it was our turn (3:30 to 5:00), we went and looked through a few rigs.  We were late getting started and wanting to relax a bit before the dinner and dance tonight, we called it quits and went back to our place.

Dinner was another catered event (we are certainly eating well!!).  Tonight it was “Italian” with lasagne, chicken, Caesar salad, roasted veggies, and cheesy mashed potatoes.  It was all very good!  After dinner, it was time for the “70’s Theme Party”...what a blast! It was dance time!

Unfortunately, I did not get individual pictures of all attendees but here are some...

Debra and David...

Rose and Monte...

Sherry and Jesse...

Harry and Vicky (Vicky is not too sure about this "full-timing thing")...

Steve with Gina (a "solo")...

Another "Solo"...DJ...

Bill and Diane...

Dave and Diane (lots of "Diane's" at the rally)...

Maureen and Tony...

Gary and Sandy...

Bob and Karen...

Donna and Allen (aka Ferg)...

John and Janie...

Phil and Theresa...

Camera-man, Monte...

It was a wonderful time and a great way to celebrate our last night with all our new friends!

Sunday morning we all gathered in the banquet room for a full catered “Farewell Breakfast” at was time for hugs and handshakes and a few final words from Howard and Linda.

We certainly made so many new friends that I know we will meet again as we continue our travels in this wonderful lifestyle!   For the host’s perspective on the RV-Dreams Fall Rally, visit Howard and Linda’s journal at RV-Dreams Journal

Most of the attendees left after breakfast Sunday but there were a few stragglers that were staying on for another day or two.  We are leaving tomorrow, so we had a pretty laid back day...I was had been a very busy and eventful week!

We said goodbye to Debra and David...they are heading to Lake of the Woods today. They are just loading their SUV into the, they are long...69 feet!

While we were watching Dave and Debra prepare to leave, we saw some activity on the river...that looks like fun...

There were leftovers from dinner last night so we were told to bring our plates and cutlery over to the banquet room.  After dinner, we all gathered around the you can see, there are still a number of us left...

Monday, we were all packed up and on our way to get our rig weighed by Howard and Linda.  They had set up on a flat area near the entrance/exit to the resort.

It was about 11:30 a.m. when we hit the road...for our 5 mile trip to Guaranty RV in Junction City.  The camping area was pretty full but we managed to find a pull-through spot...there was no electricity hookup but that was no big deal.  Steve had filled the fresh water tank before we left River Bend RV Resort so we were all good.

After doing a minimal setup (i.e. clear the stuff off the bed and unstrap the dining chairs), we headed off to Cabelas and Costco...yes, a repeat of our shopping trip last Monday.  The clerk at Cabelas had grabbed the wrong box off the shelf...they were Simms chest-waders but they were the cheaper pair that were not made of Gortex.  Of course, we hadn’t noticed this when we paid for them and it wasn’t until we were home and I was going over the receipt that I noticed the price difference.  I didn’t mind paying less...but they weren’t the same quality as the Gortex.  The GPS mount that Steve had bought for his ATV wasn’t going to work for him either, so that had to go back as well.

At Costco, I left Steve waiting in the truck while I went in to pick up my contact lenses.  The price difference is very significant down here compared to back home.  I don’t know what they would cost at Costco in Canada but from my optometrist, I paid $120/box...Costco here in Eugene, $52.49/ that’s $105 (one box/6 month supply for each eye) vs $240 plus tax back home.  There is also no sales tax in Oregon.  So now that we are retired and on a fixed income, that’s a pretty significant savings!

It was going on 5:00 by the time we got back to our fifth-wheel.  Steve got the chairs out and we sat with a cocktail enjoying our lovely surrounds...

As it turned out, there were a number of rally attendees getting work done at Guaranty RV after the rally...4 other couples were here...Monte and Rose; Mike and Nancy; Gary and Sandy; and Larry and Bonnie.

After dinner, Steve got the “Campfire in a Can” out and Monte, Rose, Mike, Nancy and Sandy joined us around the fire.  So what if we were sitting in a parking lot...still a great time with great people!