Monthly Archives: January 2019

Fredericksburg, TX

We spent the last 5 nights in Fredericksburg, Texas a town founded by German settlers in the 1800s. We visited the area a couple of years ago, but only for an afternoon, as we were on a day trip out of San Antonio. We decided to return for a longer stay to explore the Nimitz WWII Pacific War Museum and enjoy some of the wineries in the area.

It took a day and a half for Charlie and I to explore the museum. It is one of the best museums we have ever visited. http://www.pacificwarmuseum.org/

There is a focus on music in the town and many restaurants have live bands each night. We stopped by Hondo’s and listened to a band called the ‘Almost Patsy Cline Band.’ They were pretty good, but it wasn’t my favorite genre of music.

When I was about ready to fall asleep to Patsy Cline music we decided to go across the street where a more hip hop band was playing at the Crossroads Saloon. We had fun dancing to the music.

One morning we took a recommended scenic drive west, along TX337 to Medina, Vanderpool and Leakey. In Medina we stopped at a fantastic Apple Store. We bought a piece of apple pie which was about the best I’ve ever tasted.

The area between Medina and Leakey is very scenic with rolling hills and country ranches.

Back in Fredericksburg we toured the Vereins Kirche museum. The building housing the museum is a replica of the original building built by the founders. We learned a lot about the challenges the early German settlers had to overcome as they established the town, and how the small town grew over the years to become what it is today.

If you visit Fredericksburg, we suggest the Mamacita’s Mexican Restaurant. It is fantastic!

Not too far from Fredericksburg is the Lyndon B Johnson National Historic Ranch. We visited the ranch during our last trip to the area and really enjoyed it. We did not revisit it during this trip, but highly recommend it.

While in Fredericksburg we stayed at the Fredericksburg RV Park. It is a quiet and clean park just a half mile from Main street. The park worked well for us and we’d stay there again.

We are now on our way to Wilcox, AZ to visit the Chiricahua National Monument. We’ll stop on our way in Las Cruzes, NM for the night. Following a couple nights in Wilcox we move onto Tucson. More on that later……

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Galveston, TX

Galveston was not in our original trip plan. However, once we learned that friends of ours, Jon and Cathy Kling (www.rvgreenboard.com), were going to be at the Jamaica Beach RV Park for the month of January and that Jon would be willing to build me some new cabinets in our RV, we headed that way.

Jon converted 5 paneled spaces to cabinets, giving me a ton of more storage space. I’m quite excited that he was able to do this, especially considering that we are embarking on a 10 month road trip.

The weather ranged from the low 40s, with wind and rain, to the mid 50s. We only had a couple days of sunshine. On one of those nice days we joined Jon and Cathy and took a tour of the Oceanstar Oil Rig. We found it fairly interesting. It is hard for me to imagine working on an oil rig for any length of time.

Down the street from the Oceanstar is a Train Museum, which we also toured. The museum is done very well, offering a lot of interesting history and things to see. It was also enjoyable strolling through all of the trains.

While walking around the old district of Galveston we came upon an old fashion ice cream and candy store called La King’s Confectionery. It brought back memories of similar stores visited in our youth. I wish my 5-year old grand-daughter was with us, as she would have LOVED this store.

We only went out for dinner once, and it was great. We highly recommend Gaidos if you are ever in Galveston. We enjoyed a great dinner with Jon and Cathy.

Not too far from the Jamaica Beach RV Resort is Allex’s Seafood Market where I picked up some locally caught fresh shrimp and Red Snapper. I then made a very yummy dinner.

While at the Jamaica Beach RV park we also had an opportunity to catch up with some fellow Atlanta based RVers, Lisa and Ricky Gonzalez. We saw them for the first time in years last week at the Tiffin Service Center in Red Bay, Alabama. Turns out, they were also heading to Galveston. Small world.

Well, we are back on the road, heading to Fredericksburg, TX. More on that later…

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Lafayette, LA & Tabasco

We stopped for a night in Lafayette LA, on our way to Houston TX. We arrived at the KOA just off I-10 shortly before sunset. We ventured out to see the Old Town district, but did not find anything interesting there. We went a little further down the road and stopped for dinner at a small restaurant called Steve & Pat’s Bon Temps Grill. The food was fairly good and the local atmosphere of the restaurant was great.

In the morning we drove over to Avery Island and toured the TABASCO Museum and Factory. TABASCO was invented back in 1868 by Edmund McIlhenny on Avery Island. Today, his descendants run the company which provides the spicy red sauce to nearly every country around the world. We enjoyed learning about the history of the family and the famous sauce.

Following our TABASCO tour we headed back to the RV, packed up and prepared to work our way to Houston. However, right before we got back on the road we received a call from our kids, whom we were to meet in Houston. They were on the plane in Atlanta preparing for take-off when our five year old grand-daughter, Kensie, had a seizure. She had never had such an event. Long story short, Kensie had a Febrile Seizure. She is doing better now, but their trip to Houston was cancelled. Since our primary reason for going to Houston was to see the kids and they were no longer going we changed our plans and went straight to our next destination; Galveston, TX. More on that later……

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Natchez Trace Parkway

We pulled out of the Tiffin Service Center yesterday afternoon and decided to take the Natchez Trace Parkway towards Jackson, MS. If you are not familiar with this parkway it is a 444-mile federally protected scenic drive through three states. Back in the day Indians, slave traders, soldiers and settlers traveled along a similar route. We have travelled on different sections of this road, from Nashville to Jackson, at various times. It is always an enjoyable and peaceful ride. Often we were the only people on the road.

We stopped at the Jeff Busby campground (CG) on the Parkway, just before sunset. The CG was completely empty. Not sure if it was because of the government shutdown, or the season. The RV sites were up a hill and designed primarily for smaller campers. We could have parked in one of the sites, but it would have been tight so we decided with everything shut down and nobody around we would just park in the entrance parking lot for the night. That worked out great.

In the morning I took a very nice 3/4 mile walk up the hill to an overlook. The views and trails were very nice.

In the morning we got back on the parkway and drove to Lafayette, LA for the night. More on that later.

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On the road again: Jan.12, 2019

It is hard to believe that it has been nearly 10 months since our last road trip. That’s not to say that we have not utilized our RV during that timeframe. Upon returning from our Winter 2018 road trip we headed up to our home base resort in Lake Toxaway, NC; Mountain Falls Luxury Motorcoach Resort (MF) (http://www.mtn-falls.com/ ).

We absolutely love MF. We have made so many wonderful new friends there and the surrounding lush mountainous area will take us many years to fully explore. We purchased a coachhouse on the top of the mountain ridge and have enjoyed many stunning sunrises, storms and Fall Colors from our back porch.

(You can click on the pictures to enlarge)

There are endless opportunities to explore nature around Mountain Falls. The Blue Ridge Parkway is just up the road and there are over 250 waterfalls in the county of Transylvania.

My daughter, Sarah, and granddaughters joined me on a hike to Log Hollow Falls in nearby Brevard, NC.

My other daughter, Stephanie, joined me on a visit to Living Waters Waterfall and captured me taking a photo.

My favorite waterfall in the area of Mountain Falls is Eastatoe Falls. It is on private property in Rosman, NC but the landowner allows the public to see this beautiful landscape.

Charlie and I enjoyed a day driving along the Blue Ridge Parkway this past Fall.

Some quality time was spent with family and friends at our house on Lake Chatuge, in Hiawassee, GA.

We also enjoyed a few hot air ballooning adventures. Charlie has been ballooning for over 40 years and always looks forward to getting his “Dense Fog” balloon up in the air.

One of the ballooning events that Charlie really enjoys participating in is in Helen, GA. Unfortunately, this year the balloons were unable to take off due to an extreme amount of rainfall. In fact, the river nearly ran over in front of the hotel.

The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC had a couple of good exhibits this past summer and we took the opportunity to check them out. One of them was the Titanic Costumes. It was neat to see the costumes from the movie incorporated throughout the mansion.

The Biltmore also hosted the Chihuly Exhibit, which was really nice to see.

In December we took a vacation via Charlie’s plane. We visited many of the new friends we had made at Mountain Falls, as well as some of Charlie’s friends from his past employment. Our first stop was in Panama City, FL. We saw some of the devastation caused by Hurricane Michael back in October. You can see all of the blue tarps and downed trees in the photos below.

We then flew onto St. Petersburg, Orlando and Hilton Head. It was great to visit with so many wonderful friends. I also loved flying over the Atlanta airport.

The biggest adventure we had over the last 10 months was a 2-1/2 week trip to Iceland. I’ll do a separate blog on that fabulous trip.

We are now in Red Bay, Alabama having our annual service completed on our Tiffin RV. We expect to be done here tomorrow and begin our adventurous 10 month trip. Below is a map of our planned trip. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep up with the blog, as we expect to have many great experiences to write about.

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