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Week 20: Ending 3/30/2003
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PostPosted: Wed May 21, 2003 2:22 pm    Post subject: Week 20: Ending 3/30/2003 Reply with quote

Week 20: Ending March 30, 2003

Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday:
We are sitting at the Allegro Campground waiting to be called into the factory for service. We exchange RV war stories with other campers, catch up on laundry, make friends with other traveling pooches and wait. The couple to our right, Millie and Richard from Michigan, have been waiting a week already. (The factory finally calls them over Wednesday morning.)
Sunny, clear skies invite us to wash the RV, which takes up several hours of scrubbing on Tuesday. It is difficult to get it perfect, but at least we eliminate most of the road grime and bugs.

At 7:05 am, the campground manager knocks on our door and tells us to drive to stand-by at the factory. We break camp quickly because people have been known to lose their place, even at stand-by, for being late. We wait outside at stand-by for a few hours and invited into Bay 7. Campers have told us that Philip in Bay 7 is an excellent service mechanic. The motorhome gods are smiling on us.
Our former neighbors, Millie and Richard, are just a couple of bays away. They guide us to Swamp John’s, a small cafeteria set inside a gas station and convenience store in Red Bay. We had heard about during our other visits to Tiffin but never knew where it was. Who would have guessed to look for it inside a gas station?! Amazingly, the food is pretty good, with both fried and non-fried offerings, too.
We decide to hunker down in the service bay so we don’t have to keep moving back and forth from the camp to the factory. TV reception is pretty non-existent but it is a small inconvenience.

Our technician Philip suggests Spark’s Drive-In as a good place for lunch. It is just over the border in Mississippi. Millie and Richard join us. Spark’s is a homestyle resturant with grill offerings and hot bar entrees. All salad bars in Alabama seem to share the same quirks: julienned ham, crackers instead of bread, lots of pickled foods and no blue cheese dressing. Still the unpickled veggies were fresh and cold and the iced tea abundant. Good place to visit when one is in Red Bay.
We bid farewell to Millie and Richard, whose motorhome repairs are complete, and make new friends with Mark and his Bassett Hound, Buster Brown. Buster is very sweet and easy-going and very bright.
We retire to bed early since we have to get up early to drive to Birmingham to see Blue’s Clues (and our relatives!).

We arrive in Birmingham in plenty of time. Ron’s cousin Becky, her husband John and their 2 ½ year old daughter Emma, are in town for a dental conference for John, to visit Becky’s parents, and for Emma to see Blue’s Clues. Joan joins the Blues gang while Ron helps his uncle with his PC. Everyone joins up together again for lunch and political discourse at Hershey & Edna’s home. (Emma napped during the heated discussions, enjoying a late lunch surrounded by doting eyes.) We reluctantly say goodbye at the end of the day and promise to try to visit Becky and John in their new home when we travel the Midwest.

We invite Mark and Buster Brown over to our bay for a cookout. (Okay, we had started in the bay, which has really tall ceilings, but we worried about setting off the sprinkler system, so Ron moved the grill outside.) Millie and Richard found NY style Cheesecake at the local Piggly-Wiggly and graced us with one, knowing that it is Joan’s favorite dessert. Mark and Joan indulged in slivers of the heavenly cheesecake, which is made is Atlanta.
Another good night of friendly conversation was enjoyed by all, including Buster, who received lots of rubs and a few treats.
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