Happy New Year’s Eve!

12/31/14 Wednesday in Wauchula,FL (Peace River Preserve-TT)

I have to be honest, I have thoroughly enjoyed my vacation from blogging. Still, I want to share some thoughts from this month that’s revolved pretty exclusively around our purchase of our new RV home, a 2012 Winnebago Journey 36M.

Thoughts on the purchase (Next 4 paragraphs):

We knew when we bought Miss Journey that she was in beautiful shape, but had been driven over 60,000 miles. That’s unusual for an RV, though not for a semi truck which runs on the same engine and chassis. Because of those extra miles the price became affordable for us ($150,000). (LaMesa gave us $39,000 in exchange for our 2003 Safari Zanzibar. They went up after I told them PPL would give us $42,000 to buy it straight out). We simply figured that diesel engines are made for lots of miles, properly serviced, so that wasn’t a big deal. Then we heard from a friend: the roads it was driven on could negatively affect the tires. Later I got to realizing that the house part wouldn’t be so much affected, except that with that many miles (2500/month-like crossing the US every month) the owner surely had to stop frequently to sleep, thus the slides and jacks would have more wear than normal. Plus more “banging” of the cabinet doors as it traveled all those miles. Just items to keep in mind when you consider a beautifully kept coach with relatively lots of miles on it.

We had so little time to investigate this rig when we flew to Tucson, we didn’t nearly cover what we should have. Nonetheless, we did have a thorough inspection by our Wholesale Warranties inspector, which Miss Journey passed, so that was encouraging.

Taking Delivery Day is rough. We had 1.5 days of packing and moving before that day. I don’t think we could have managed without that. Just a warning. The Walkthru on that day took 2 hours (easier for us because we’ve lived in a 40′ diesel motor home before this purchase), then the Warranty inspection took a couple hours. The latter isn’t normal, but it sure was comforting. Thus you may not even have a whole day to move.

It’s hard to believe that it’s been over 2 weeks since that Delivery Day. We’ve discovered a few things that need attention, but most are pretty minor. The worst is the dryer (makes a loud, high pitched whining sound any time it’s on). We found the prior owner’s service receipts. After having this rig about 5 months he complained of a very noisy dryer-they replaced the motor. Sure hope that isn’t a 2 year situation-it shouldn’t be. Even though this isn’t on LaMesa’s list of items they’d repair if noted within 15 days of delivery, they said they will cover it. There is a small window (dual paned) that is fogging, so it needs attention before that etches on the glass. The other items we’re learning how to fix ourselves: jacks (spray WD 40 about 3-4 times (dropping and lifting the jacks between each spray), so they’ll come up/down easily), adjust the MCD shades to stop where we want them and go the speed we want, adjust external gray/black tank external indicators (not reading empty or full). For the last we learned that these read through the tank material, so if the material is too thick at the point they are placed, they don’t read properly. They can be pried off with a screwdriver then reattached with 2 sided sticky tape in a better spot (or after sanding some). We had a large scratch in the paint, so we used a toothpick to apply some matching paint (from little bottles received with our rig. We’ll need to coat a couple spots on the outside entry stairs with naval jelly, then clean with steel wool to get the rust off. Next up: put well backed thin carpet on the steps to prevent further rust damage and limit dirt brought into our coach. Also, we called Schrock Mfg. regarding the paper covered wire that kept coming out and poking me. They explained how it worked (put in by Winnebago, Schrock just makes the frame) and how to tighten a loop around it to keep it from working out.


There are so many things that I love about this rig-too many to list. You’d really be bored then! In short, it’s so efficient, it seems we’ve found handy places for everything. There is so much storage we fit almost all of our 40′ rig things into this 36′ rig. There is such quality built in – the cabinets, the faucets just feel so well built. Even the water seems to come out stronger and faster than it did in the Safari. So many things that make life comfortable: vinyl tile floor throughout, lots of counter space, 2nd sink for me, paddle fan in bedroom, MCD shades on all the windows and a roomy bathroom. The TV satellite works fine (transferred from our Safari) and we both are enjoying all the TV’s – two in the living room even, so we can watch no matter where we’re facing. It feels so much like home, we’re in danger of forgetting our goal to “See America.”

We have been walking the many trails near the river, around the campground. We’ve seen an alligator and the great egret that likes to hang out nearby, as well as a (tricolored?) heron. Unfortunately, I haven’t been carrying my camera most of those walks and the telephoto feature on my phone is sad.

great egret 1

Although we haven’t explored much while here we did enjoy a fun potluck dinner celebrating Christmas on Tuesday. Tonight we’ll celebrate the New Year with laser lights and music by Bobby Mach (DJ and singer)-outside!

About Patricia Elser

I've always loved the loose, flowing, transparent look of watercolors, of Chinese paintings and their calligraphy, but alas, no watercolor classes were available when I was in school, so that interest remained buried until my children were grown. Even then, I was afraid that I couldn't really paint, so upon my sister's advice, I actually started to take classes. I signed up for every class available, determined to learn no matter how afraid I was. I came upon a teacher, Stan Miller, who inspired me, who opened the door to success in watercolor. I love to look at beautiful images. I want to capture them forever. All my life, photography was how I gathered images of the beauty I saw. Thanks to all that photography, I enjoy composing pictures, especially up close. Watercolors allow me to add more of me in their translation of that beauty. My paintings reflect my love for music and dance, with their rhythm and flow. I am fascinated by the play of light, so it appears in my pictures as drama for they are filled with darks and lights. Maybe it's the challenge, maybe it's the beauty, but now, when a work comes together, it fills my soul.
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