24-29 March 2015; More Friends and Family, Great Music, Coach Fixes and an Anniversary!

Wow…Texas hospitality is overwhelming!  The folks in this part of this great state are truly the “salt of the earth” type.  We have met some of the nicest people over the past few days.  It makes us believe that this great country of ours in still in pretty great shape considering the God and Country spirit we’ve experienced these past few days!

Tuesday morning was departure day for Terri’s mom and sister.  I had some work commitments, so Lois and Rick graciously took them to the airport.  They made it in fine shape, and made all the connections to get back to Wisconsin.  The week went by way too fast.  Terri spent the day doing laundry and getting the Coach settled.  We also made a late afternoon trip to the dump station, as the loads of laundry put us near the overflow point on our gray tank.  I think I mentioned previously that even though Guadalupe River has 50 AMP, they have no sewer connections, so once a week or so, we needed to take a trip to the community conversation point, also known as the dump station.  We were back and set up in short order.  Lois and Rick also made a trip, and after all that fun stuff was done, we had a great night grilling out and playing some cards.

Wednesday was also busy with more laundry, and I worked most of the day.  Terri, Lois and Rick took a nice long bike ride, and later on Terri went into town to pick up our mail and do some shopping.  I made a “once around the kitchen” chili for dinner, and we ended the night quite early, as Terri and I were headed out in the morning.

It rained quite profusely Wed night.  I was glad we had pretty much taken care of everything for the move on Wed afternoon, as it didn’t take long at all to get moving in the morning.  Also…no leak in the closet!  We didn’t know if this was goodbye to Rick and Lois or not, as we were headed about 40 miles away for some Coach repairs.  I made an appointment at Texas Custom Coach in Pipe Creek, TX for Thurs morning to get the Coach really checked out good for leaks.  Did I mention Thurs was our 32nd anniversary??  What a woman to put up with a move to who knows where and a potential long stay at a repair shop for an anniversary!

Tech Tip:  Do your research before picking any repair facility!  I happened across Texas Custom Coach on one of the many RV forums I belong to.  I read about a couple that had a nagging leak like we do, and this place was the only one that was able to find the problem and fix it.  I had called the place previously, and the owner replied immediately and said to come on over on Thursday.  This place kind of blew my mind.  When we pulled in, all I saw were Prevost, Newell, and other $M+ coaches.  Oh oh!  I may have made a mistake!  But oh no!  When I went inside, the nice young lady said that Dave wasn’t around, so she called Steve in, who is apparently the #2 guy in the place.  I told Steve what the issue was, and about my previous conversations with Dave.  I felt a bit disconcerted at this point, as they didn’t have me written on the books anywhere, and in my mind seemed quite surprised I was there.  Remember I said “in my mind.”  These folks were great!  Steve told me to pull in behind one of the nice coaches in the yard and he would get one of his guys on it pronto.  I told him we live in the rig full-time, and had heard they had full hook ups if we had to stay the night for repairs.  He said they were full up, and would be sure to get us out before the late afternoon…yea, right me thinks!  So, we inquired about where to go for the night, and they gave us a few ideas for the area that was near us called Bandera, TX…Cowboy Capitol of the World!

This is where it also got weird…I said alright…we will go check it out, but does anyone want my name or number?  Do you guys want some keys?  Do you need some credit card info?  They said, sure, give us your number in case we have questions, a leave a key or two!!!  Sey Wut??  Our entire livelihood is inside the Coach!  But…the folks seemed great, so we trusted our instincts and headed out.  We landed in Bandera and stopped at a few RV parks.  They all laughed when we asked if they had space.  If you go back a few posts, you will see a tech tip that I posted that says to always check what is going on in the local area you plan to stop in, as local events may pack the parks full.  It just so happened that “Thunder in the Hills” was taking place from the 26th to the 29th in Bandera…one of the largest spring time motorcycle rallies in the area!  Bupkiss!!  So…we headed out of Bandera north on highway 16 over Medina pass and found a couple of really nice parks that were more than willing to let us stay for about $50 per night!  Not on our budget!!  All nice places, and even nicer folks though!  We happened upon the town of Kerrville, TX and noted a City Park that had RV spaces.  We went in and talked to the manager, and she was the nicest person you would ever want to meet (do you see a theme here??)  She told us she had several spots available and gave us a gate code to be able to look around and pick what we wanted.  The park is awesome!  514 acres on the west side of the road, and about 40 acres along the river on the south side of the road.  We noted that there were what appeared to be two 50 AMP full hook up sights on the west side in an area they advertise as 30 AMP only.  We went back and inquired, and she said, yep…we don’t advertise we have two 50 AMP sites over there, but if its open, it’s yours!  Boom!!  Sign us up!  We explained that our Coach was being repaired, and we didn’t know when we would be back.  She said no worries, here’s your paperwork and gate codes.  Come when you can.  So…$26 per night for 50 AMP full hook ups in a gorgeous spot!

So…what about the Coach you may ask?  Well…I’ll tell y’all (as we say here in Texas!)  I called Steve at the shop, and he said the Coach was ready to roll.  I asked him what they found, and he said not much.  He said that the work we had done previously likely took care of the majority of the issue, but they caulked around all of the lights on the inside of the Coach.  He said that in some instances, and it may sound strange, water can get down into the light fixtures and you will never see it because anytime a door or window is opened, the pressure sucks the moisture away and to other points where it can get inside.  He said the inside of our coach looked better than most of the Coaches he had on the lot.  This made us feel real good, as I know the coaches he has on the lot were much newer, and much higher priced than ours is.  I asked him if they did the pressure test that I’d mentioned before, and he said “nope…we fix all the leaks for the people who have had the pressure test done.”  Well…there you go.

So, we left Kerrville, and headed back to the shop at Pipe Creek.  When we got there, the owner, Dave was there, and he greeted us and asked if there was anything else they could do for us.  I mentioned a few things we were thinking about, and he grabbed his pad and came out to the Coach and gave us a few ideas for upgrades…no pressure, just suggestions.  After spending about an hour with him, I went back inside and asked the nice lady behind the desk what I owed.  She said that she only spends the money…she doesn’t take it…hmmm, what is going on here?  She had mentioned previously that she was putting my bill together.  So…I walked back outside, and Dave said I was clear to back on out and get on the road.  I said, certainly, but I need to pay someone.  He said, no you don’t, we only spent a few hours on it.  What???  I was expecting a $3-$400 bill.  I told him his folks have to eat, and he said, Ron, they eat plenty well, and I know you will be back, now go enjoy your Coach!  You could have blew me over with a feather!  All of the things we had read about this place were true.  I will definitely be back to this place if I ever have any customization I need done.  They do it all.  Check them out at texascustomcoach.com.

Well…what an anniversary present!  We got hooked up and headed for the park at Kerrville, and were set up in the early afternoon.

Checking out one of the many biking trails on the 514 acre park.

Checking out one of the many biking trails on the 514 acre park.

Nice wide open sites.  Much better than being right next to your neighbor.  This used to be a Texas State Park, and the City has done a great job with it.

Nice wide open sites. Much better than being right next to your neighbor. This used to be a Texas State Park, and the City has done a great job with it.

Cannot even see a neighbor.

Cannot even see a neighbor.

After our bike ride, we got cleaned up and headed into Kerrville, and had a great anniversary dinner at the Rails A Cafe Depot, which is the old RR depot in historic downtown Kerrville.  What a great day!

Come to find out, we’d only made it about 40 mile west of where we had been before.  Not much of a move, but well worth the trip.  We were up early on Friday, and hit the bike trails again.

Wide open black top trails on the one hand.

Wide open black top trails on the one hand.

And awesome wooded trails on the other.  You can go for miles and miles....and we have!

And awesome wooded trails on the other. You can go for miles and miles….and we have!

A nice shot of the Hill Country from one of the overlooks on the bike/hike path.

A nice shot of the Hill Country from one of the overlooks on the bike/hike paths.

We knew that Lois and Rick were still at Guadalupe River, and they’d mentioned before we left that if we were in the area on Friday night, The Almost Patsy Cline Band was going to be playing at the Dance Hall in Luckenbach.  So we got in touch with them and decided to head over there for the night.

We stopped at a little Tex-Mex place along the way for a small (right!) bite.  This is a $6 Burrito plate...gave me three meals!!  Was a nice little place on the river in Kerrville.

We stopped at a little Tex-Mex place along the way for a small (right!) bite. This is a $6 Burrito plate…gave me three meals!! Was a nice little place on the river in Kerrville.

We made it to Luckenbach before the sun set.

Interesting shot of the place where all of the folks that show up to just sit in a circle and jam place their tools of the trade.

Interesting shot of the place where all of the folks that show up to just sit in a circle and jam place their tools of the trade.

I wish my bill pay system worked like the one in Luckenbach does!

I wish my bill pay system worked like the one in Luckenbach does!

Crowded place!

Crowded place!

Post office/General Store/Bar at night.

Post office/General Store/Bar at night.

Lois and Rick showed up about 7:30, and the band was getting ready to play at 8.  Vicki, who is one of the fronts for the band knows Rick and Lois real well, as they have been coming here for about 9 years, stopped over at our table to chat right after Rick and Lois arrived.  What a great woman!  Besides being extremely talented, she is one of the nicest people you will ever meet.  After meeting us the first weekend we were here, and then again at Luckenbach, it felt like we were old friends.  She invited Rick, Lois, Terri and I out to her and her husbands Ranch outside of Bandera for Saturday afternoon and evening.  What a great invite!  Before that happened though, we were treated to some awesome music and great dancing.  One thing for sure, once the first note is struck around here, the dance floor is full.  Here is a shot of the band…they are über talented!

Vicki and the boys of The Almost Patsy Cline Band.  Check them out if you are ever in the area.

Vicki and the boys of The Almost Patsy Cline Band. Check them out if you are ever in the area.

We had a great night!  On Saturday, Terri and I hit the trails again, and I did some more work, followed by a dry cleaning of the Coach.  You cannot wash your rigs here, so I used some of the Lucas Oil product I mentioned in a previous post to get the grime off of most of the Coach.  It was looking quite sad.  Early in the afternoon we headed out to the Dry Creek Ranch and met up with Rick, Lois, Vicki and her husband Frank.

They have an awesome spot jut outside of Bandera.  Here is a shot of the swings around the fire pit.

They have an awesome spot just outside of Bandera. Here is a shot of the swings around the fire pit.

A great meal, great family, and awesome new friends!

A great meal, great family, and awesome new friends!

Rick and Lois parked their 5th Wheel at the Ranch for the night, as they were headed East on Sunday.  Before Terri and I headed back to Kerrville, Vicki and Frank invited us to their Palm Sunday services at their church in Bandera for Sunday morning.

A great community church, and some of the warmest , nicest folks you will meet.  The service was very moving, and we enjoyed it immensely.

A great community church, and some of the warmest , nicest folks you will meet. The service was very moving, and we enjoyed it immensely.

Afterwards, Frank and Vicki invited us all out to lunch at the Back Yard Bistro in Pipe Creek…it is not hard to find…it is the only restaurant in Pipe Creek…it’s right behind the Antique Shop.  If you can’t find the antique shop, just look for Wilbur the Pot Bellied Pig and he will show you the way!  What a great meal.  we had a blast walking through the property afterwards.

Frank and Vicki.

Frank and Vicki.

Now with Lois and Rick.

Now with Lois and Rick.

Wilbur house...he was tired and taking his afternoon siesta.

Wilburs house…he was tired and taking his afternoon siesta.  You may be able to just see his snout under the curtain.

After many good byes, and a couple of packs of fresh catfish courtesy of Frank, we hit the road back to the park at Kerrville, and Lois and Rick headed East.  The last I heard from them, they were stuck in bumper to bumper traffic just east of Houston.  Terri and I made it back in time to take a ride down to the river.

What a beautiful part of our country!  We will be back again, God willing!!

What a beautiful part of our country! We will be back again, God willing!!

We extended here until Wednesday.  There is supposed to be some weather moving through late Monday through Tuesday night, so we decided its just best to wait it out.  We plan to head for San Angelo, and the Goodfellow AFB Fam Camp.  They are first come, first serve, but I called them the other day and they said they have some folks checking out on the first, so wish us luck in getting a spot.  It is tough finding a place to camp over Easter weekend, as apparently every Texan with an RV goes camping on Easter!  From San Angelo, we will likely head toward Albuquerque, and from there, hopefully toward the Grand Canyon to meet up with some friends in April, and then onto California and Oregon.  Who knows…

Enough for now…as always…we hope this finds you Happy, Healthy, and Living Your Dreams!!

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