Monday, September 26, 2011

Port Lavaca, Texas

 Our home for the next few years.

We made it! What an adventure. I wonder if the pilgrims felt as I did on our way down? We left Licking Missouri at 9:30am on September 21, 2011. On our way to Rolla, the trailer started swaying and fishtailing. Talk about having your heart in your throat! We could not figure out what was causing it. Every time we had pulled it before, the trailer had towed like a dream. We stopped at Wal-Mart to pick up a few snacks and necessities before starting out again. After getting on the interstate and increasing our speed the trailer started to act up again. We did not want to drive all the way to Texas at speeds of 50 to 55 mph. I kept going over and over in my mind everything my dad had taught me and all I had heard about towing trailers. Then it hit us, we had filled the fresh water tank. As it happens, the 45 gallon tank sits under the bed which is behind the tires of the trailer. Every bump and sway of the trailer had the water sloshing which made the trailer sway even worse. We pulled over at the rest area near Doolittle, MO and searched until we figured out how to drain the water tank. Dave pulled the drain valve and off we went again, this time watering the highway along the way. The trailer then pulled like a dream. Lesson learned!

I wanted to stop at Camping World to check out a bumper attached clothes line. As we pulled into the parking lot, trying to figure out where and how to park, we introduced the rear of our trailer to the back corner of a small pop-up camper. How embarrassed we were. No doubt about it, we are newbies to the rv world. Thanks to the kindness of the owner of the trailer and Camping World, we had no problem exchanging insurance information and everyone kept saying "No problem". After all that, I didn't get the clothes line. LOL

We headed out again and made it south of Springfield. About 12 miles from Carthage, MO we heard a loud boom. Yes, a tire on the passengers side had blown out. We had not replaced any of the tires even though they were cracking a little. However, we had purchased a spare tire. We pulled onto the shoulder of I-44 to put on the spare. Changing a tire is never fun but it was made harder by a sloping shoulder. Try to jack up a trailer, keeping your balance while standing on a steep slope with large trucks flying by, causing the trailer to rock sideways. Talk about a work out! Thankfully a couple of Missouri Highway Patrol pulled behind us and waited with their flashing lights on until we were finished. They informed us that there was an RV dealer about 10 miles down the road. We pulled into Colaws and purchased another tire. They did not have a way to mount it onto the rim but directed us to a Wal-Mart a few miles down the road. We had the tire mounted and headed toward Oklahoma. After traveling all day we crossed the state line a little after 5pm. 

Dave decided he could make it driving to Durant Oklahoma, so we kept going. After driving on some of the roughest roads we arrived in Durant at 10:15pm We had already located the Wal-Mart there on our GPS, we pulled into the parking lot, crawled into the trailer and fell asleep. Waking up around 5:30 the next morning, we filled up the truck and left Durant about 6am. 

We hit the Texas line at 6:30am and felt like everything would go smoothly from there. Because of the time we started out that morning, we hit Dallas at rush hour. Bumper to bumper, stop and go, with at least 6 accidents that we saw. I don't know how people manage to do it day after day. We were out of Dallas around 8:20am and southbound again. 

Somewhere close to Waco, we stopped to fill up the truck and a gentleman noticed that one of the tires on the trailer, drivers side, was slipping the tread. We pulled out of the gas station and down the road a few 100 feet and pulled off in an old driveway. We changed that tire a little faster thanks to flat ground. Starting out again, Dave said we are almost out of money and can't afford to get another spare. I said that's okay, God will help us and keep us safe. From then on I was in constant prayer.  
I even changed the words to a song as a way of thanking God for helping us to make it. 

The song goes like this, 
"It's really surprising what the Lord can do. 
He can take a lost sinner and make him good as new. 
And if you will let him, he will pardon you. 
It's really surprising, what the Lord can do."

My version;
"It's really surprising what the Lord can do.
He can take an old tire and make it good as new.
And if you will let him, he can help you too.
It's really surprising, what the Lord can do"

We stopped at a rest area to stretch and Dave noticed that the other tires were starting to slip their tread too. We eased on toward the coast, trusting that God would take care of us. I think we traveled on some of the roughest roads in the US. The trailer started swaying and swerving if we drove over 55mph. We were counting down the miles and were happy to see the city limit sign of Port Lavaca, Texas. The other camp hosts were happy to see us pull into the park. Dave was exhausted and asked me to back the trailer into our spot. After getting it in place, he motioned for me to come to the back of the trailer. We had lost one of the treads on a rear tire. He looked at me smiling and said, "We really did come in on hope and a prayer." God does take care of us.

We are here and in good health. Enjoying some down time before starting work on Thursday (9-29). 

Sunrise in Port Lavaca, TX

The Lighthouse Beach
Even the dog seems to enjoy the sea breeze.

Hope the day brings you just enough sunshine and rain to make the flowers bloom.
Love, Lydia

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing the travelogue, Lydia. We miss you already but are sure glad you made the trip safely and are 'home' now. I'll be keeping up with you!