Saturday, September 15, 2007

DOVES, Domicile, Tires, and Doggies

Location: Goshen, IN

Escapade Plenary Session
The Fall Escapade, put on by the Escapees, is now over. An Escapade is like a conference, but everyone comes in (and lives in) their RVs. There are plenary sessions with bad jokes and door prizes, RV safety classes, seminars, crafts, vendors, nightly entertainment, and food. There were hundreds and hundreds of people there, and a lot of them were full timers. I met some amazing people, shared more than one bottle of wine, and made lots of new friends. As usual, I didn't win a single door prize!

I became a DOVE. The DOVEs are one of many special interest groups that the Escapees call "Birds of a Feather" or a BOF. DOVE stands for "Disaster Operations Volunteer Escapees," and is comprised of RVers who assist the Red Cross at disaster sites, usually travelling to the site in their RVs. As a part of being a DOVE, I joined the Red Cross as a volunteer and am in the process of taking the classes I need to be a volunteer.

Tire ScaleI got my rig weighed the accurate way. When you pull into a scale in a truck stop, you normally weigh the entire vehicle -- so you don't know how the weight is distributed on each axle. To get an accurate picture of the load on each axle, and the distribution of the weight from side to side, you need to weigh each tire. Much to my delight, all of the weight limits (total weight of rig, total weight of vehicle, combined weight, weight on each axle, and weight on each tire) were all under the maximum, and the weight was distributed properly. Not sure how I managed all of that, but I'm glad I did -- the cause of a lot of accidents and breakdowns is an overweight rig.

I decided that I am going to make Texas my new domicile! Think they'll make me get a ten gallon hat and boots with spurs? Let me know if you find any on Ebay! And I WILL learn to speak Texan, and my practice phrase is: "Howdy, all y'all, did you know you can put your boots in the oven, but that don't make 'em biscuits?"

Doggie Parade
Captain Jack SparrowA lot of people at the Escapade had dogs that travel with them in their RVs (and I might someday, too) -- so they held a doggy parade! All the dogs bring their humans to the parade, where they (usually the dogs, not the humans) sniff and bark at each other, cavort, and generally have a splendid doggy time. Some even dress up, such as Captain Jack Sparrow in the photo to the right. By the way, Captain Jack, unlike his human, was NOT a happy camper.

Now I'm off to the middle of Ohio, where I hope to track down the mill of my great great grandfather, Carlton Enzy Gregg -- after I do laundry, get groceries, have my oil changed, and find a hardware store. Full timing doesn't mean the chores go away! And Carlton has been dead for 115 years, so I don't think he'll mind waiting one more day.

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