This was our 2013 Jayco Flight Swift 198 RD


Sunday 30 December 2018

Hallelujah we are underway

I can’t believe it myself, but we are on the road heading southwest! At the time of this writing, we are parked at a Walmart parking lot right next door to Lowe’s in Texarkana, Texas. 

At my last update I indicated that we were down to one puppy, but that was a bit premature. We still had two puppies, but the person that had made the appointment to come to our house to get one didn’t show up. But then one of the two puppies left went to new parents on Christmas Day and the last puppy was picked up Thursday morning at our house by a mother and daughter who both wanted to bring him to their homes, so I guess they have to share him among themselves. It is a little bit heartbreaking to say goodbye to the puppies as we had grown very affectionate of all of them, but to see the delight and happiness as we hand them over to the new parents helps us to feel better about it and we do get pictures of them as they settle in their new homes.

So on Thursday late morning we found ourselves puppy-less. A very mild day was forecasted for Friday with temps around 12+C but with plunging temperatures for the weekend and even the possibility of some snow. So after digesting this weather forecast, Benno and I went into a packing frenzy so to speak.  All day long I made the trip from the house to the travel trailer and back to bring all the stuff that we think we need for the next few months, including a quick trip into town to get a few more items and to the bank for some US currency.  Boy did our Canadian Dollar ever go down in the exchange rate.  It sure hurts us big time. 
On Friday morning we were both up early to finish packing with the last of the foodstuff, draining our hot water tank and shutting off the water to the house and a few other tasks. By 9:30 a.m. we were rolling out of our driveway.

At the Ambassador Bridge, which is the Canadian Border crossing into the United States in Windsor, we encountered a HUGE backup of cars all wanting to cross over.  I don’t know why there were so many cars, but my guess is there must have been a game on that day.  We were prepared for a waiting time for at least 2 hours, but two border employees came walking up and they directed us to use the commercial trucking lane instead of the car lanes.  So we lined up behind a few big trucks until it was our turn at the border control booth and it only took maybe 5 minutes waiting time. After our passports and dogs vaccination papers were inspected and we were asked where we were headed and how long we were going to be away, we were free to leave.  The big bonus was that there is no tollbooth for the trucks to pay the bridge toll, so we saved some money.

Friday night we spent at a parking lot at a Flying J fuel station off I-69 in Marion, Indiana. It was -3C cold and windy which made it feel even colder.  We crawled under the covers and our propane furnace kept us warm but the noise from the many trucks that came and went all night long didn’t make for a good nights rest.  On top of it, our two dogs needed to go out in the middle of the night. Next day driving the road of the downtown bypass in Indianapolis, Indiana was so bad that the truck and camper shook and rattled so much that the brackets that hold our full length mirror on our bathroom door had broken off and Benno was greeted when opening the bathroom door by a broken mirror laying on the floor.  Overall there were quite a lot of potholes on the highways and the winter has not even yet begun so I wonder what they will be like in the springtime.

From Saturday to Sunday we stayed overnight at a Walmart parking lot in Sikeston, Missouri where the I-57 meets the I-55. The parking lot was ok and it was a big Walmart.  At around 2 a.m. a pick-up truck with a sweeper attachment started cleaning the surface of the parking lot and that noise woke both of us up.  He kept sweeping around our camper and vicinity for a long time but eventually we drifted back to sleep.

We left Canada with only some propane in one tank and one full 30 pound one.  Here in Texarkana we made a detour trip to a TSC store to fill the empty tank with propane only to be told that they are totally out of propane. Hopefully we will find another store tomorrow as the temps are still on the cool side.

I don’t know if I can post tomorrow, but Benno and I would like to wish everyone a Happy and Healthy New Year.  


  1. If you are in need of Propane you can get it at the Flying J RV Lanes so you don't have to go far off the Highway. Since you only pay for what you use in the U.S. have both of your tanks filled. Like the TSC you don't know where they will have Propane because of the cold.
    If you are headed to Quartzsite the RV Pit Stop always has plenty of Propane on hand. Hoping our paths will cross as you experience a different kind of Snowbirding in the Southwest.
    We are wishing you Safe Travels and a Happy New Year.

    It's about time.

  2. Nice to hear you are on th way and making good time, travel safe, keep warm and enjoy the journey.

    1. Thank you Rick and Kathy. That is a good tip because we hadn't thought of the Flying J to get propane. I'm sure we get to see you sometime somewhere down southwest and it would be really nice. A Happy New Year to you too!

    2. Thank you George and Suzie. We'll keep moving but we won't be stressing us out making miles. Temps have already risen so it doesn't feel like we are fleeing or being chased by the cold. Happy New Year!

  3. You guys are making great time, looking forward to seeing you down here. Safe travels and HAPPY NEW YEARS!!!

    1. Ditto to what Bill said. Safe travels and Happy New Year! We may see you sooner than later! :)

  4. Yeah you are on the road. That must have been quite the mess to clean up re the broken mirror. No matter where you stop tonight, may you have a wonderful New Year's Eve. All the best in 2019.

  5. happy new year Marlene and Benno-glad to hear use are running safe to your destination. we had a lot of rain and wind here yesterday but today its going to be 47f. no snow as of yet hoping it stays away for awhile. the neibour hood is pretty quit I guess to much partying last night. have a great day . talk so Teresa and Dave