Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Our first road trip

This past weekend (Jan. 18-20), Janet and I finally lost our RVirginity!  Yes, we took our first road trip.  Janet's bagpipe band's competition season kicked off with the Central Florida Scottish Highland Games, in Winter Springs, Florida.  Rather than simply drive to the games as we've done for many years, this year, we decided to take our house!  Early last week, I made a reservation for two nights in a nice RV campground in Sanford, Florida, which is near Winter Springs and 225 miles from our home base in Fort Myers.  I could tell you that the whole trip pretty much went without a hitch, but I'd be lying -- without a hitch, there we be no way to tow our 5th wheel!

Actually, we experienced two minor issues:

1. When we were getting the rig ready for the trip, we couldn't get the awning braces to line up in the retracted position.  We messed with the awning for about half an hour, opening and closing it several times, hoping that things would somehow line up properly.  Alas, they did not, but fortunately, a friendly neighbor with many years of RV experience showed what to do, which took all of about one minute!  (Nothing like the soothing voice of experience.)

2. Unlike our dog, Annie, who loves riding in the truck, our cat, Elkay, does not appear to be a big fan of traveling.  He's a big cat, and we put him in a large carrier in the back seat of the truck.  Normally, he has immaculate litter habits, but shortly after travel commences, he decides to relieve himself in the carrier!  Elkay demonstrates his joie de voyager by dropping a deuce.  On the outbound trip, we tried feeding him very little in the morning, but that didn't help.  On the return trip, the unsavory deposit was accompanied by an emptying of the feline bladder!  Lesson learned: We've put a small litter pan in the carrier for future journeys.  With any luck, Elkay will use it.  [Note to self: Never take Elkay on a plane in a cat carrier!]

Our driver (Janet), and the ground crew (me) continued our fine teamwork, handling departures, transit, and arrivals in style.  The odd thing was, as Janet pointed out, that after traveling 225 miles from Fort Myers and arriving in Sanford, we were still home!

We had a great time; the round trip was safe and uneventful.  Unsurprisingly, the largest expense for the trip was fuel: a whopping $165.  (OPEC has sent us a thank you card!)  The high cost of fuel will keep us from taking long distance, short duration trips.  Now we're looking forward to long trips this spring and summer.