Preparation for our drive to South America is getting into high gear now - as time to leave approaches
Our Next Trip South 2007
Can’t believe this year is almost over. Only one more hospital stay and we should be good to go by the beginning of March 2007
So we are back in full swing of preparation again. Willie has again had his oils changed and tires rotated and his ball joints replaced (a recall on the ball joints.) And of course Bill got a hold of another off road catalogue and found DECALS!! - One on the back window is put on with the letters upside down it says “If you can read this - roll me over!” Sure hope that never happens. Another says “It’s a Jeep Thing - You Wouldn’t Understand” how true.
He bought an inflatable boat for fooling around in the lakes and lagoons. (Luckily he already had a pump for inflating it. - Gee that means he didn’t have to go to Harbor Freight Tools again.) It is industrial gray in color and when blown up it is about 10 feet long and will hold six people. There are oars of course, but he also HAD to get a small electric motor for it. And that needed a battery - Wal*Mart trip. Now he needs to have a cargo pod to put on the roof of the jeep to carry the deflated boat. Will it never end?
No I guess not - he just reminded me that we also have flags of each country we will be passing through to put on our antenna.
Took the Alfa into the dealer and had a bunch of stuff done.
Most important: Bill had them replace ALL eight batteries. The six house batteries are sealed 6V maintenance free Glass Mat. And two 12V maintenance free to replace the chassis batteries.
Replaced the cartridge for the drinking water- we will chlorinate the water as we fill the tank so this is just an extra precaution - it also will remove some of the chlorine taste.
Installed an extender piece on the main propane tank for the motorhome so we can fill the bbq tanks from the big tank.
Checked the roof and had it resealed where it needed it. We weren’t having any problems with the roof leaking or anything - just preventative maintenance.
Serviced the generator which consisted of changing oil and replacing both air and diesel filters.
Checked air pressure in all tires and set to correct pressure.
And last but not least replaced the dryer vent and vent louver on the outside. (don‘t know if we will even be able to use the washer/dryer on the trip cause it uses a lot of electricity and most campgrounds south are only 15 or 30 amps. I need to check if we have clothes line and clothes pins, I think we do. - Deep down in some drawer.
Bill has also started to sell his wood working tools. They just weigh too much to transport across country. Will probably start listing the furniture soon too - we very seldom sit in the living room and have never used the dining room set.
Jeff (my cousin who is going with us) bought a set of big (3x5) flags of each country in Central and South America that we will be going through. We’ll fly them in the campgrounds.
Willie was also at the dealers. FINALLY the connection for the tail lights has been fixed correctly. When connected to the motorhome they didn’t work right - they came on but were very dim. NOW they are BRIGHT.
Have acquired some more "stuff" (will it never end!) Now we have a tent so Jeff can sleep outiside when weather and camping areas permit. He also bought an air mattress - remember we took out the sofabed and replaced it with a lounger.
Then we got a couple of wall mounted security cameras for the motorhome. Might or might not help with safety. And got a couple of mounts for the video camera. One for the dashboard and one for the side window. Hopefully they will help with filming when going over a rough road. Maybe we won't get so much video of the ceiling and my lap that way.
Also put another alarm on Willie, the Jeep. It really hollers if it is messed with, would scare me away! He also got new fog lights and an unexpected repair - a new front windshield. The old one was cracked and it continued to crack clear across the glass. When the old one came out the decal went with it. So immediatelly Bill ordered a new one and had it sent Priority Mail! It's on the window now.
March already. Well today we brought the Alfa home and started to clean out the underneath compartments. There was still dust and ashes in them from our trip to Alaska three years ago.
Bill and Jeff took everything out from underneath and piled it in the garage. Then cleaned the sliding compartments and started putting stuff back. It will all be rearranged to accomodate the new stuff i.e. boat, motor, tent etc. He took out the TV that came with the coach from one of the compartments as we never use it while camping. JUst not the kind to sit around at night and watch TV outside.
Right now everything is piled in the garage - tomorrow it all will be cleaned and re packed. There sure is a lot of room down there. Little by little the preparation is being completed.
The Alfa is back at the RV dealers getting some finishing touches on it. Fixing a couple of switches that were fussy about working, fixing a leak in the heater hose, putting in a new air filter and filling the tank with propane. Next week it goes to Freightliner for rear brakes. They have 30,000 miles on them and have developed an irritating squeak. Then it will be ready to roll.