The Adventures of Me & My Shadow #46 in MO,IA, & NE
1,127 miles this trip, odometer now 59,624 total miles this year 7,096.
From , Coleridge, NE Hi Everyone!
It was apparent when I arrived in Rayne that spring had sprung. Trees had their leaves and blossoms, flowers were blooming, I saw a tractor driving through a flooded field planting rice (the main crop here) I felt good knowing that winter is over. The rally in Rayne was great, had some good seminars, some very interesting visits with old and new friends, except for one rainy day, the weather was OK.
Because I have about ten years experience, I had been asked to lead a bull session on GPS systems. I was glad to see many more drivers and co-pilots using it, I was able to answer most of their questions and I learned a lot from them. One of them, Larry Turner, has been using it for about as long as I have and is into computers and GPS a lot deeper than I am. He taught me more in a half hour than I had learned in ten years on my own. He uses a Garmin hand held unit as a receiver for the Delorme program in a computer. He made the adapter for a 12 volt DC power supply and the computer connector himself, it is available from Garmin for a price. He showed me a button on the Garmin unit that is marked “MOB” for use on a boat for “Man overboard”. If a person falls overboard you push the button and it marks the map where the person fell overboard so you can turn the boat around and return to the exact place where they fell overboard. We needed that on the ships in the Navy back in WW2 and the 50s when I was on an aircraft carrier. In those days, a life preserver would be thrown over to mark the spot and if it was done quick enough the man could swim to it to wait for rescue. After the life preserver was thrown over, the carrier would make a high speed turn one way and then the other to bring it around in a circle to the spot were he fell overboard. This worked pretty good most of the time but it was hell for any one working on a aircraft, if they didn’t have every thing tied down it would go sliding away and could slide right over the side. It seemed like they would always wait till they were in the turn and the ship was listing real bad before they would say “Standby for a turn to Starboard” or “Port”. Some times I would think they were trying to send more men overboard when they made high speed turns.
Larry told me he always pushed the MOB button when they take a side trip in the towed car so they wouldn’t have to remember where the coach was. I think I’ll get me one so when park a borrowed car in a mall parking lot and I forget where I parked it and I don’t even remember what it looks like.
Rayne, LA is “Cajun” country. We had Cajun entertainment, three very good Cajun catered meals that always start with a big pile of brown rice on the plate. Growing up during the depression, I never leave anything on my plate and with three ice cream socials, and with doughnuts and coffee every morning, I had to let my belt out one notch. Now I have to starve myself, so I’ll be ready for the Western States rally in Ukiah, CA next month.
What really made this rally good was those little voices that tell me what to do, they usually tell me not to play Bingo, save that money ($10.00) for gas. On the last night they told me to play Bingo and I won $90.00. The last time they told me to play Bingo was in Myrtle Beach, SC, I Bingoed for a $15.00 prize and had to split it with another player so I came out about three bucks in the red.
The first leg of the trip north went well (except for heavy rain in northern LA and southern AR). My navigators, Gus & Keith agreed on the shortest route so I was able to use Gus’ map and Keith’s voice. Made it to my brother Gerald’s place in Gladstone, MO by 10:30 PM and was glad to shut down and get some rest. I even needed fuel at the right time, $1.38 was the best price I saw all the way up, except for one place I saw it for $1.01, I didn’t need fuel but I was going to pull in and take on as much as I could till I see they were out of business, I can’t win them all.
3/27/00 Went with Gerald to an AT&T retires breakfast. There were about 40 people in a small room and like me, most of them were hard of hearing. Now when you are hard of hearing and you are talking to someone who is hard of hearing it is normal to raise your voice a little. I was glad that I didn’t have my hearing aids on because there was a whole lot of shouting going on. I didn’t need to amplify the noise, I just needed a filter to sort out what I wanted to hear. By cupping my hands around my ears and pointing my nose at the person I wanted to hear I did a pretty good job of filtering out the noise. I was able to capture some interesting conversation I think I’ll see if I can design a device to do what I do with my hands, it sure beats hearing aids.
I have discovered another traveling companion, I call him Arthur and he has a little brother I call Burce. They don’t travel with me but they always show up when I stop awhile. They are a real pain in the … but they never bother me when I’m driving. Perhaps some of you know them, their last name Itus. If you do know them, you will know how they can bug you and you will wish they would leave you alone. Every year that goes by I become more aware of them.
3/29/00 Drove up to my nephew Gordon & Hether’s place just north of Council Bluffs, IA. Gordon had told me to get there by 4:00 PM and he would get off early and take me out to where Hether works, a wild animal park where you can drive around in a car to view the animals. It is not open yet, so we had it all to our selves. After the interesting tour, Hether took us to dinner, sure can’t beat that. Spent the night and when Gordon was ready to go to work I headed north again. At Sioux City IA I pulled into a truck stop to get fuel, it is usually cheaper than in NE. No where did they have the price for fuel posted (that’s not a good sign) I pulled up to the pump and tried to read the price without getting out, looked like $1.50 something, I lost my cool and thought, if they don’t want to advertise the price of fuel I’ll get fuel in NE. I pulled out and went to the first station in NE , put in $60.00 of $1. 54 fuel knowing it was less than I would have to pay in my old home town of Coleridge, NE. Was I supprised when I got here and see it was $1.50, I had enough fuel to get here and I could have saved 4 cents per Gal.
4/1/00 Started the new month out by going out to the Dehy Plant where I used to work and changed oil, greased and replaced the missing shock absorber on the coach. Also replaced a leaking header gasket.
Been eating too much here in Coleridge, with a free breakfast, a fund raiser breakfast, a fund raiser Dinner Theater and a fund raiser Soup Supper. And I still haven’t been over to Wausa, NE to my cousins for a free dinners yet. I’ll have to starve my self on the way to CA so I’ll have room for the ice cream socials and the coffee & doughnuts.
I have been ordering rain for the farmers here (I sure don’t need it), so I could take credit for it. All that’s being delivered is wind and cold temps., one night it got down to 22 degrees, even had a little flurry of snow one day. I’m being blamed for it
4/7/00 Drove over to Elno & Barb’s for lunch today, before lunch was over it started snowing and it looked like I might be here awhile, the ground was soon white. The snow didn’t last long and I was able to drive over to Don & Elaine’s and was taken to another fund raising dinner at the fire house in Wausa, NE. Spent the night and now will finish this letter and get it sent. You will have to wait to hear about my Dr’s appointment in Sioux Falls, I hope I can talk him into putting me on some cheaper pills. I can’t afford both high priced pills and high priced fuel.
Till next time, Dallas or Dad if it fits.

Me & My Shadow, with Gertrude, Gus & Keith on the road.


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