When it rains, it pours. Literally and figuratively.
Updated: May 15, 2019
Rain, rain, go away! It feels like we haven't gotten a real break in the rain in so long! Its so soggy and wet everywhere! Can we just have a couple of days of sun? Or, you know, having a day where we don't run into any issues with the trailer or nomad life would be nice too. I don't think either of us has had a stress free day since...early April?
Sunday morning was another overcast day with rain in the forecast. Since we had the trailer and dogs, we couldn't make the post-wedding brunch. Sad story. Instead, we set out on the road to our new campsite in Accord, NY. The very base of the Catskills, near Kingston, New Paltz, Minnewaska. A very cool sounding area. For the first time in a while, a very short drive to our next destination, only an hour and a half. Phew! The dogs have become road warriors too. Tungsten doesn't even pant in the car anymore! Who'da thunk it?! Ace just chills too, tries to nap. The rain starts when we have maybe 30 minutes left in the ride.
Check in is a breeze. We get our paperwork, key card to get in through the gate, list of weekend activities, easy-peasy! I'm asked what ampage our unit is and they show me a map to ask which spot we'd like. Not knowing what the grounds are like, I ask them which spot would be the easiest to back into. Everyone there throws in their 2 cents. It comes down to the back corner spot. Yes, let's take that one. They give me a map and draw out directions on how to get there and we head over. Their map is definitely not to scale. We find our spot and it only takes 3 or 4 backing up attempts to get the trailer perfect. We level out the trailer and start setting up. Oh, did I mention I left my phone and key card at the office? One of the staff members drives over, calls out my attention to give me both back. Thanks Rondout Valley staff.
Everything is set up despite the downpour happening now. But wait, there's more electrical problems! Yay! We call office from my phone. They can't hear anything from the receiver. An issue that's been going on on and off since the Indy Mini. Great. We call them back from Ryne's phone and they send out a couple of their maintenance technicians. The issue we're experiencing now is with the electricity shore line. Where the trailer plugs into to gain power. The surge protector is plugged in, everything is working fine. Once the trailer is connected all power is lost. Hrrumph. The technicians come by and begin testing everything they can. They test the power with a multimeter. The shore line seems to be working fine based on that. Then they start looking all around the trailer's electrical boxes. Maybe its the inverter? Converter? I have no idea. One of them is in the trailer moving the couch out of the way to get to the box. I took of picture of this and put my phone in my back pocket. They continued checking and testing all they could and from what I overheard, it ended up being something with their system. They're going to go to the hardware store, pick something up and come back to fix it. Hooray! It's not us. I take my phone out of my pocket to put on the counter and see an Android with his chest cap open on the screen. What the heck? I'll deal with you later.
It is still a steady downpour out there. Ryne is soaked and already changed twice. I'm so glad we got Topo Athletic's Hydroventure2 before we left for this journey. Despite all the rain and mud, at least our feet are able to stay dry. Its been a saving grace in all this. Waterproof shoes that can handle all this mud too. They have been amazing. Highly recommend them to all of you going on wet hikes or just need a break from this rainy weather.
The technicians make their way back to our site. They unscrew something from the shore line and put the new piece in. Testing, testing. Everything seems to have power but once they're connected, nothing. The technicians did all they could think to do and deduced that it must be something wrong with our trailer. Fantastic! What happened? Everything was working fine in Ohio but here? Nope. Did we do something wrong? The only thing we could think of is that we left the electric water heater on the whole time in Ohio but never took the water heater off winterized mode (We didn't have any hot water in Ohio, we figured we'd wait until this site to figure it out since we'll be here for much longer). Could that really have tripped the system that badly? Why didn't we blow a fuse first? Why can't we get a little break? Why wont it stop raining? What are we going to do tonight? The furnace wont work right now either. Its May but its certainly not spring weather. We don't have enough battery power to keep everything working all night, certainly not for a couple of weeks.
Plan: Get a hotel for the night and bring the camper to Camping World in the morning. Have them look at the trailer and hopefully have it be an easy fix.
We find a Super 8 about a half hour away. The most reasonable hotel in the area that allows dogs. It'll have to do. Overnight bags packed and off we went. On the ride over I look into my phone more. Its definitely not working. Something about a bootloader error. Nothing I can do seems to fix it and there's not much I'm able to do with the functions currently available. Perfect time to die, phone.
After checking in and paying the extra dog fee that they didn't include in the online booking fees, we finally make it to our room for the night. Diner, Walmart, shower, bed. Finally dry and warm.
Early bird gets the worm? 6:30am our alarm goes off. Today's plan: Get back to the trailer, attach it to the truck, drive back up to Camping World (its about 5 min away from the hotel), hope for a quick fix, mail back our Maryland plate for the trailer, go to Verizon to figure out whats wrong with my phone, pick up the dogs at the hotel by 11am, pick up the trailer. Can we do it? We're sure as heck gonna try!
We get to Camping World right as service opens, explain the issue and the response we get? "Do you have an appointment today?" No, of course we don't. Apparently the whole area brings there's broken and busted trailers here and their mechanics won't be able to look at our until June. June! Its mid-May! UGH. What are we going to do? They can't even have someone look at it to give us an inkling of an idea of what's wrong. The least he can do, he says, is give us the names and numbers of emergency roadside assistance RV guys. That'll work, thank you busy man and we head back down the road a half hour to the camp site and call the first of 2 numbers this guy gave us.
Jeff is a delightful man. "Sure I can help! I'll be there within the hour!" He knew exactly which campground we were at and the site area. Definitely not his first rodeo. He gets there a little bit after we do and set everything back up. Due to our one functioning phone and uncertainty of the area, we had to wait for him to get there before I can take off with the phone for GPS to get the dogs and our things from the hotel and check out. These boys hate being left alone so my planned two trips to the truck became one. They were so excited to be outside. I was glad to make it to the truck without falling. 2 dogs, 2 backpacks, 1 cooler, 1 dog crate, 1 dog pillow, it was a trip. We made it. Time to head back to the campsite...again.
I pull up towards our site and see no trailer, no Ryne. Oh gosh, its totally busted, he needed to bring it to the shop. Where's the shop? What am I going to do now? I have Ryne's phone, he couldn't update me. Next thought, call the mechanic. Try to get an update. Jeff is so friendly. Everything is fine, it was a problem with the site, he already gave Ryne the invoice and we were moved to a site a few sites down. Jeff even gave me directions to the new site even though it was only 8 over and on the same road.
Problems solved. Jeff also gave Ryne the rundown of how the water heater works so we can start taking warm showers in our own place. It was a big no-no that we had the electric heater running the whole time with no water going into it in Ohio too. We definitely blew out the coil. The LP one does work though, perfectly fine. Hooray! Jeff also told us that this campground use to be fantastic but after a few ownership changes, they definitely haven't kept it up as nicely. We thought it may have just been because of the gloomy weather. It's not just us. Good to know.
Don't worry, its still not time to relax yet. We still had to go to USPS, Verizon and get groceries for the week. Bad news is my phone is officially dead. I'll have to use the warranty through Google for a replacement.
Our fridge is finally filled with yummy foods and we can start playing around with the Instant Pot to cook delicious meals. First up, Turkey sausage and peppers with rice.
A note to the newbie Instant Pot users, 3:00 means 3 hours, not 3 minutes. Besides that hiccup, dinner was great!