About Me

Lee Creek, North Shuswap near Chase, B.C, Canada
We went full-time Rving in October of 2005! We retired from full time to part-time as of the end of 2015. Our present "small but comfortable" Wagon is a 2008 Camper trailer(TravelAir Rustler), pulled by a 2008 Dodge Dakota, 4X4.l. Our home is now a Gated Community Park, in Oliver, British-Columbia, Canada. I retired in 2005 and my Life Companion, Valerie, retired October 1, 2006 from nursing. We invite you to follow and share our new adventures and mishaps. Life is but an adventure full of dreams yet to be fulfilled!

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

December 27 to 31, 2008, Louisiana

DEC. 27, Saturday, Preparations for departure

It was overcast again this morning; it rained overnight and right now it’s muggy and hot. Spent the day packing and getting ready for tomorrow.
We had happy hour with our friends then relaxed in the evening at home.

DEC. 28, Leave for Lafayette, LA

W got up to rain this morning, of course! While I dumped, Val had one last session of Tai-Chi with Dennis then we said our goodbyes and left Abita Springs. Drove south on hwy 59 to I-12 then south again on hwy 190, across the causeway which cost us $12 (it wasn’t there the last time we were here); then it was across New Orleans and onto Hwy 90 all the way to Broussard, just south of Lafayette. We drove through beautiful country side, bayous and manicures farm land.
We stopped for lunch at a truck stop with a casino but we didn’t go in. We finally arrived at our destination, MAXI CAMPGROUND( a CCUSA), in Broussard, 9 miles south of Lafayette. We paid $11 a night. After setting up, we got a call from my brother Andre saying that they were in Lafayette and would be over later. That is a surprise we weren’t expecting and it is wonderful. He and Claudette arrived about an hour later and we had a nice visit before turning in. They spent the night with us of course.

N 30* 08” 59”
W 91* 57’ 05”
Alt. 42 feet
Distance today: 297 KM at an average speed of 45.5 MPH in 5 hours total.

DEC. 29, sightseeing

We got up to a beautiful sunshine and a warm day (65*F) Just perfect for sightseeing! We went out for breakfast then began our tours. We first drove to Lafayette National Park which was closed on Mondays so we didn’t get to see the inside of the buildings. We then drove to the Acadian Village which is a replica of a village back in the 1800’s. This too was closed for the season but we did walk around and took a few pictures. All the building were locked, of course. It was interesting, too bad it was closed.
We then drove to New Iberia and Avery Island where we saw the “Jungle Gardens” owned by the Mc Ilhenny family, who also own the “TABASCO” hot spice. The garden was the highlight of our day. We drove on a pre-determined 5 miles road and made numerous stops to look around. We saw a couple of small alligators, Azelia and Camellia flower bushes, an old Buddha statue from China, bamboo jungle, Palm trees gardens, and a bird sanctuary for Egrets which were almost extinct in the early 1900’s. We did a lot of walking and had a marvelous time. Afterwards, we visited the TABASCO plant where it is made and bottled. It began with a film showing the process, we were given two small bottle of green and red Tabasco then walked in a hallway with a glass separating the factory from us That was disappointing because we couldn’t talk to the workers. All we could see was the bottling process. From here, we went to the Store where we tried Spicy ice cream then different Tabasco sauce.
We tried another tourist sight but again it was closed so we gave up and came home, had dinner, visited for a while then Andre and Claudette left for their hotel. They are leaving early tomorrow for Baton Rouge and more sightseeing.
We made plans to get together for New Years!

DEC. 30, Tuesday, Lafayette

We got up to another sunny day. We went to town and stopped at the info centre which turned out to be very well done with a small bayou and a wooden walkway. There were lots of fish and turtles in the lake. We drove into town and looked around the downtown and saw the old Cathedral built in 1821. We went inside and it turned out to be very simple but beautifully awesome. Outside was an “old live oak” which turned out to be over 500 years old. WOW!
We then went to Wal-Mart and picked up groceries then came home to put all away.
I caught up to my pictures and blog.

DEC. 31, Wednesday, Last day of 2008

Another year gone by! I am writing this early as I want to post it before the new year. It is a sunny day but a bit cooler, a cold front is coming down from the north. We are awaiting my brother’s arrival so we can go celebrate the New-Year. I will tell you all about it on my next write up.

See you all in 2009 and enjoy the new pictures in folder #32

Friday, December 26, 2008

December 24 to 26, 2007, Abita Springs

DEC 24, Wednesday, Abita Springs

Christmas eve, WOW!! The year has just flow by. The four of us went cycling to another part of the trace. We drove to Mandeville then cycled to Lacombe, a 20 mile round trip. The trail was the same, straight! We did go through a bayou but never saw any gators or armadillo which is what Val is really wanting to see.
In the evening, we watched a video, “Mama Mia”. If you like ABBA then it's worth watching.


We both slept in this morning, then we got ready for our dinner at 1 p.m. at the club house. It is overcast and very muggy this morning; a balmy 68*F (18*C) at 11a.m. It also rained overnight.
We went for our X-mas dinner at the club house. It was a really good meal. We sat with Denis and Sandy and a young family with two girls and a young boy. It sure brought back memories of our own families. The dinner was excellent and we got to taste different dishes from down south.
Later in the afternoon, I called our kids and grand-kids. We must have talked over 2 hours combined. Thank goodness for Skype! Anyway, in the evening, we watched another movie loaned to us by Denis and Sandy.
It was a good day!

DEC. 26, Friday

After Val’s lessons in Tai-Chi, we, the four of us, went cycling again for the last time as tomorrow is reserved for packing and getting ready. We only did a 8 miles round trip. It was really muggy and warm today, 78*F (24*C) We actually have the A/C on right now to ease the humidity inside. On the trace, there were lots of people cycling and walking and we even saw two girls on horseback. We stopped and got to pet them… the horses that is! At the park, where we turned around, it was full of kids and parents.
We got a call from my brother Andre this morning. They are in New Orleans and leaving for San Antonio. We will see them around the 30th or 31st in Lafayette, our next stop. Oh yeah, downloaded new pictures if anyone is interested, in folder #32

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

December 19 to 23, 2008 In Abita Springs,

DEC. 19, Friday

Another warm day which is great. I did my banking this morning while Val learned Tai-Chi from Denis. We are really taking a beating with the exchange these past two months. I think it’s time to move on to Mexico where the exchange will be a little bit more reasonable.
In the afternoon we all went cycling again and this time we headed west to Covington, a 8 miles return ride. The trail ends here so we looked around a bit, had ice tea at a local restaurant on the Trace then headed back.
Val got a CD on Tai-Chi from Denis so she is very happy. I had to watch it all evening!!! (SMILE).

DEC. 20, Saturday

Warm and muggy all day & evening. It rained a bit in the afternoon but only for a couple minutes. We were planning on cycling again today but decided against because of the threatening sky.
We went for some groceries then took a drive down Hwy 59 to Fountainbleue State Park to take a look around. Came home and put the groceries away and just relaxed

DEC. 21, Sunday

Strong wind and cold weather greeted us this morning. It barely got up to 58*F and the forecast is for 28*F tonight. It rained quite heavily in the afternoon so it was a good day to read. Val did her Tai-Chi with Denis and Sandy this morning before the rain and I dumped the tanks and vacuum the basement.

DEC. 22, Monday

A very cold night, it went down to 26*F (-4*C) and it went up to only 46*F (8*C) all day. I guess we can’t complaint when we hear that Canada is having a freeze and tons of snow!!
Our toaster decided to call it quit so we went to Wal-Mart in Covington and bought a new one and some groceries while at it. The traffic was horrendous; everyone is out shopping for last minute Christmas items.
I called my friends on Vancouver Island, Leslie and Paul and we chatted for a while on Skype. It was good hearing their voices.

DEC. 23, Tuesday, in Abita Springs

A bit warmer today but overcast. We stuck around here today. Val did her Tai-Chi and I just puttered around and read. We went for walks around the park.
The evening became much warmer and right now, at 10 p.m. it is a balmy 65*F outside. Go figure!!
I called my father-in-law, Wilf Roger on Vancouver Island, it was nice chatting with him.

Friday, December 19, 2008

December 14 to 18, 2008 In Abita Springs, Louisiana

DEC. 14, Sunday, move to Louisiana

We were on the road by 09:40 a.m. and headed west on I-10. Traffic was light going through Mobile, Alabama. We crossed into Mississippi again and just before entering Louisiana, we stopped for lunch. When we left, it was drizzling but as we drove west, it slowly cleared up and right now, the sun is trying to peek out. It is also warm.
After lunch we continued on and arrived at our exit at Hwy 59 off I-12 where we headed north to 435 and a couple miles later, arrived at our destination for the next 2 weeks, Abita Springs RV Resort. As we were driving here, I realized that we were a day early!! We were not supposed to leave until tomorrow but they were kind enough to accommodate us anyway. We are here under A.O.R. so paid $8/night all inclusive and we have internet.
We set up under a warm sun and the temp. outside is 80*F, time for shorts! HURRAH!!!!!

N 30* 29’ 46”
W 90* 00’ 03”
Alt: 151 feet
Dist. Today: 270 KM in 4 hours
Av. Speed: 51.4 MPH

DEC. 15, Monday, in Abita Springs, Louisiana

SUNNY AND VERY WARM! Is it ever nice to be able to put on shorts once more. We have to work on our tan too. I discovered my sewer hose is leaking so we had to get another one at Camping World. We also took my bike to Covington, a town next to ours, to get a tune up on the gears.
Came back home and enjoyed the sun and met a few neighbours. This park is much friendlier than the previous one. There’s also been a lot of improvement since we were here last. We also discovered that WHR sold this park but they are still honoring the membership for the time being. The office told me that they would keep their membership with AOR which is good, I guess.
Two couples that we had met at Styx River are now here too. It clouded over in the afternoon, so much for the tan! It rained in the evening and overnight

DEC. 16, Tuesday, at the Resort

It rained overnight but was mainly cloudy for the day. Val did a couple loads of laundry and I set up our dish. Finally got a signal so we can now have Canadian news.
Chatted with Sandy and Dennis, couple from Quebec who were in Styx River with us, and made arrangement to go see the Abita Springs brewery in town tomorrow. We are also planning a bike ride once I have my bike back. There is a long bike trail on an old railway track which goes from Covington through Abita and on to Mandeville and the State Park.

DEC. 17, Wednesday, Brewery visit

Val went for her exercises at the club this morning and I planned our trip to Mexico. In the afternoon, Sandy and Denny joined us for a visit to Abita Springs Brewery. When we arrived we were told we could sample any draft beer that were available so we each poured ourselves one. The bar was self-serve so everyone just walked behind the bar, grabbed a glass and poured whatever kind of draft beer one wanted. There were approx. 12-14 different kinds to choose from.
We were first presented with a video of the process they take in making the beer than we were taking on a tour which consisted of three rooms, one where they mix the ingredients, one room where the fermenting takes place and another where they load the kegs. From here, our guide announced that this was the end of the tour and everyone was to go back and taste more beer. We never saw the bottling room. It was a bit disappointing but we quickly buried our sorrows in beer. I think we each tried 4-5 different kinds. Some I liked and some not. Our sampling consisted of pouring a bit of beer in the glass to sample. I don’t want anyone to think we had full glasses and drove home afterwards!!
Anyway, after leaving there, we were driving through town and Sandy asked if we had seen the Mystery House. We hadn’t and she expressed a desire to see it so we drove over there and visited the place. It was very colorful, consisting of old junk plastered all over the walls and ceiling (see pictures in Picasa link folder #32 Louisiana & Texas). There was a store selling all kinds of little paraphelias and junk but then we went through a door and through 3 buildings full of different kind of stuff, some of it quite neat. The claim to fame was an alligator 20 feet long which we saw…the head of an alligator and the body of a fish!!! The place reminded us of our time in Quebec with Glenda and Terry when we drove to Sherbrooke and saw an old junk yard sale off the highway.
We came home pleased with our day and planned on going for a bike ride tomorrow.
We had a sunny day and very humid again but warm.

DEC. 18, Thursday, a cycling ride

Val went for her exercises in the morning. It’s muggy and warm out. In the afternoon, we went cycling with Sandy and Denis. The sun came out and a small breeze which cooled things up a bit. We started at Abita Springs and followed the Trace to Mandeville, a 9 miles ride one way. The trail was fairly flat and very straight…only had 2 curves in it. We stopped for ice cream at the south end then returned to Abita. After the ride, we went for a beer at the local pub then came home. A good day overall.
I called my brother Gilles and found out that he has finally received my cheque from Fleetwood. Now we just have to settle the landing gear motor and gear!!

I have uploaded new pictures in folder #31 and opened a new one named #32 Louisiana

Saturday, December 13, 2008

December 11 to 13, 2008 in Alabama

DEC. 11, Thursday

It goes from one extreme to the other. Today, it’s barely 40*F with the wind chill. Raining on and off all day.
We took a drive to Robertsdale and went to a produce stand we had seen the other day. Val bought some fresh vegetables then we went to a local shopping centre but there wasn’t much so we drove south to the beach. Val kept saying that we had been there before but for the life of me, I couldn’t remember until we got there and I saw familiar things. My memory is really awful lately. Anyway, we came home via hwy 59 in time for dinner

DEC. 12, Friday, to Pensacola, Florida

A sunny day; we decided to drive to Pensacola and visit the Naval museum and the town. We had heard that it was a very nice museum. It wasn’t nice…it was GREAT! We had a wonderful time and spent over 2.5 hours there. We saw a movie on US naval fighters in IMAX, tried out a flight simulator, explore all kinds of planes and helicopters, visited replicas of WW I & II, but the highlight was our guide, a veteran flyer from the Midway battle. He was stationed on the aircraft carrier “Enterprise”. He had all kinds of wonderful and factual stories on the battle. We also saw a display on George W Bush senior and a story on his service. The bonus of all this was it was free.
We drove to the Perdido Key on the Gulf and drove along the beach covered in sand so white that it gave the illusion of snow. We watched a beautiful sunset and crossed the Intracoastal Waterway a couple time before heading north and home. It was a much warmer albeit cool day.

DEC. 13, Saturday, in Styx River.

Cloudy today and a bit warmer. We had a Santa Clause parade in the park this afternoon consisting of 3 floats with Santa as being the main attraction. Lots of candy were thrown about and Val collected a bag full. Lots of kids about so it was fun.
In the evening there was a dance which we attended for a while. There were only a half dozen couple there unfortunately and a live band. Western was the main music played.

Tomorrow, we move to Louisiana!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

December 8 to 10, 2008 In Alabama

DEC. 8, Monday, To Robertsdale, Alabama

We left at 9:30 and got on Hwy 90 heading east. We went through Biloxi, across the bridge to Ocean spring and onwards to Pascoulaga where we got on I-10 East. We wanted one last look of all the beaches and pretty drive along the Gulf. We drove through Mobile which brought back memories and a déjà-vue feeling. We arrived at Styx River in Robertsdale, Alabama around noon. We set up and Val went for a walk where she managed to find people from Quebec whom we had met the last time we came through here, a year and half ago. That woman is just amazing! We are here for the next 7 nights under R.O.D. @ no cost.

We covered 122 miles in 3 hours at an average speed of 42 MPH
N 30* 37’23”
W 087* 35’32”
Alt: 134 feet

DEC. 9, Tuesday, in Robertsdale, Alabama

We went into town to get some groceries and stopped at Camping World for a look-see! Ended up buying a couple things. The sky is really threatening right now. The forecast is for heavy rain by tonight. It is warm though, a balmy 70*F but it’s supposed to drop to 50 so we are enjoying it. It did begin to rain so we came home via a different route and fuelled @ $2.289…gotta luv it!
Put the groceries away and read our books. Very humid and muggy tonight; there is a TORNADO WATCH on for the county we are in…wonderful!

DEC. 10, Wednesday, a stormy day

Boy, did we ever get it overnight! Thunder, lightning and heavy rain. Poor Tucker was going crazy and spent the night in bed with us again. It’s 10 a.m. right now and it is pouring out there. Looks like a wash day and reading day which is exactly what we did.
It let off in the afternoon so I tried setting the satellite again but to no avail. I don’t know what is going on. The signals just won’t come in.
It started raining again in the evening. It’s really humid and muggy.

Monday, December 08, 2008

December 1 to 7, 2008 Mississippi

DEC. 1, Monday, Gulf Coast, MS

Sunny and cool today. We went for a drive to Gulfport along Hwy 90. We then drove on Hwy 49 north to the downtown area and looked around. Found a Wal-Mart where we exchange our coffee can as I had bought decaf. instead of regular.
We then drove back home as it was getting late in the afternoon. We tried to set up the satellite dish to no avail.

DEC. 2, Tuesday Gulf Coast sightseeing

Val did a couple more loads of wash this morning; she had run out of quarters yesterday. Later in the morning, I got a surprise call from a long lost friend, Paul, and we had a nice chat unfortunately I had to cut him short as another call from Star Choice came in and as I was trying to set up my dish, I had to take it. I told him I would call him back later.
Later in the day, we went to Bay St-Louis to look around. It is sunny and a bit warmer than yesterday. We stopped at a beach where there was only another couple with a Golden Retriever. It came to Tucker and they smelled each other then the dog viciously turned on Tucker and bit his leg and tail drawing blood on his paw. After separating them, the owner was very apologetic and we went home. We cleaned up the wound and disinfected it. He wouldn’t walk on his leg and later, it swelled up so we took him to a local Vet. where he was found to be OK. We have antibiotics so we put him on that. What a day!
Later in the evening, I returned my friend’s call but they weren’t home. I also called another long lost VIP in my life, Wilf, whom I had lost touch with and finally got his number from Paul. We had a very good chat. He just lost his wife, Vera, last September so he is feeling quite lonely. I wish we were closer now.

DEC. 3, Wednesday, more sightseeing

Tucker is feeling a little perkier today and had no problem going for a small walk. We went east again along hwy 90 and drove all the way to Biloxi where we visited the military SeaBees Base. They are the engineer department for the Navy and build landing pads, airports and whatever else may be needed. In the museum, there was a section dedicated to ”Desert Storm” and Hurricane “Katrina” where they did a lot of clearing and rebuilding for the community.
We had to go on the Base to see the museum so had to get clearance from the MP’s but we had no problems. By the way, there is lots of Casino on Hwy 90. One could be here for a month and do a different one every day.
From here, we drove across the bridge over Biloxi Bay and into Ocean Springs. This was a really neat little village with lots of neat little shopping shops. We stopped for lunch here in a place which at first, we thought was a grocery store due to the sign. (See pictures). It was getting late in the day so we drove back on I-10 to exit 31 and took a side road to our campsite as per Ms Daisy. As we turned on a road, we saw a building with a big sign saying PASSPORT AMERICA so we stopped and found out this is the Head Quarter for the club. We met the owner, Ray Fernandez, who turned out to be quite a talkative fellow. We had a hard time to leave. They were all very friendly and welcoming. Ray gave us a book called “TUFFY” about a small girl having a small dog and he dies. Originally written by his dad, the original owner of “Passport America”, we felt quite privilege to be given one copy. The original Park, “Magic River Campground” is also near so we went to visit it. You can stay there for $12 a night, no time limit.
Quite a surprisingly exciting day.

DEC 4, Thursday,

We got up to rain this morning. I took Tucker back to the hospital to have a haircut and a beautification. He was getting a little bit scruffy looking. Then I took Val to the medical clinic to get that potato out of her ear. And a big one it was according to her. She said that a big ball of wax came out of her ear but the other one was OK. Now she can hear my orders and has no more excuses although I suspect she will find new ones! (SMILE)
We picked up Tucker at lunch time and came home. Another cold front is expected. It’s only in the mid 50’s right now.

DEC. 5, Friday

Sunny but windy and cool again. We went back to Bay St-Louis today. We visited the old downtown which still showed a lot of damage from Katrina. We came upon the old train station which is now a visitor centre. The young lady there had lots to talk about and gave us a good history on the town, she also recommended we go see the old “Blue House” across the street which we did. It is a local art centre now and used to belong to a lady by the name of “Miss Alice Mosely”, a folk artist painter who died in her prime year of 94. We met her son who happened to be there at the time and had a wonderful chat with him about the history of the place, his mom and the town square where this place is situated. He met Elvis Presley when he was young. He actually lived in a shack (his words) behind Graceland. It was wonderful listening to him. His name is Tim and he is now in his 70’s.
We walked the town square which was almost all destroyed but under re-building mode and visited a couple stores then left. We went to the Space Centre north of I-10 but unfortunately we missed the last tour so we went to Gulfport and picked up our mail at UPS. We had received a call earlier advising us it had arrived.

DEC. 6, Saturday

We went to a local flea market today and walked around. It consisted of three rows of table about 100 yards each. Lots of junk but nothing of interest for us although we did meet a neat lady whose father was from Quebec and her mom was from southern Louisiana. She is a Cajun and told us a few neat stories. She was very friendly and kept calling Val “baby” She was selling jewellery and the one thing that had attracted Val there was a necklace with replica of a the eye of a Hurricane and had a fleur-de-lys in the middle. It was very pretty.
We had lunch there then came home.
I wrote a few e-mails including one to Fleetwood about the money they owe us which has now been 3 months since it was promised to us. (I was expecting a cheque in our mail which didn’t come) and sent our claims in for medical expenses.

DEC. 7, Sunday, last day in Pass Christian.

Another cold night (34*F) and cool day (55*F) but at least it is sunny. Filled one of the propane bottle @ $23 then loaded the kayaks and basically got ready for tomorrow. Did a couple of minor repair/maintenance. Tomorrow, we leave for Robertsdale, Alabama. We met a couple from Ontario who will be leaving their rig here for a period while they go back to Ontario for Christmas.