Monday, Nov 11—Heading South

Apparently, our timing is impeccable, as winter weather is quickly approaching.

Our departure was not uneventful. First, the chassis battery was too weak to start the engine. However, our house batteries were switched over and the motorhome was started without a further problem. And then, after attaching the Honda to the motorhome, the newly installed electrical cord between the motorhome and the Honda was a bit too short, and I was sure it fit when I made it. Without it, we would have no brake lights, turning signals, etc. I removed the drop hitch extender, and though the angle between the motorhome and car was a bit too much, the cable fit and everything worked. And, we hooked the newly rebuilt BrakeBuddy, crossed our fingers, and hoped it would work. We departed the house at 8:00 AM, heading toward the Rio Grande Valley of Texas for the winter.

Always, the first two or three hours driving are the most difficult, because of the hills, curves, rough roads, and slow traffic in the Ozarks. We stopped between Quitman, Arkansas, and US Highway 65, for gasoline, our first stop of the day. Our next stop was at the rest area near Arkadelphia, Arkansas, and we were beginning to get a bit more comfortable with our travel. It took about five hours of driving to get into a comfort zone, or rhythm, of traveling in the motorhome again, not constantly worrying about the BrakeBuddy, the tow car, bicycles, compartment doors flying open, the hood hinge breaking loose, etc. We stopped again at Mandeville, Arkansas, just a couple of miles north of our turn off around Texarkana, at the Pilot station for gasoline; Pilot stations have RV lanes that make one’s entrance and exit easy.

We stopped for the day at about 4:00 PM near Avinger, Texas, some 350 miles down the road at the Johnson Creek recreation area on Lake O’ the Pines. The park attendant was a little bit on the slow side, but nice, nevertheless. He pointed out some possible sites, and we set up on the one he recommended. After leveling and deploying the slides, we plugged in to the 50 amp electrical box, only to find that it wouldn’t work. We unhooked the car, withdrew the slides, and moved to another site, negating the ease of the pull-thru site.  Kay called DishTV a couple of hours before our arrival, giving them our location for the evening and to our surprise, when we hooked up the satellite dish and turned the receiver on it worked–a first for us. Of course, she asked for a US representative in the technical department. Creek Recreation Area is a very scenic park, with great sites and beautiful views.  It has not been well maintained, however, and the roads are very narrow and some of the pull-thru sites are difficult to enter.  Kay prefers Rocky Point Campground at Wright Patman Lake, but it is nice being a few miles further down the road.

Kay prepared a fabulous dinner of meatloaf, mashed potatoes, cornbread stuffing,
green beans, and salad, and we gobbled it all down.

After our last bite, we rushed down to the lake shore and watched the beautiful sunset, essentially ending our first day of travel.

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