Another Chapter Ends

I’ve been away from the blog for a few days because I had to do some unexpected travel. As you know, I live, work and travel in my RV. Last Wednesday, I decided that although I love my, “Gypsy Rider,” I need a little more space in my rolling home. I placed it for sale on Craigslist just to see if anyone may be interested in buying it. The first day, I received two emails. The first potential buyer came out on Thursday to see it, and told me he’d call back the next day with his decision. The second asked where he and his wife could meet me the next day to buy it. Whoa!

Not one to look a gift horse in the mouth, I agreed to meet at a nearby bank to handle the transaction. That meant, I had to clear out my Rialta and find a new one to purchase in less than 24 hours. I started my search online and made a few phone calls. I ended up having to leave messages and spoke with no one personally. At this point, my nerves took over and I wondered if I had moved too hastily.

The next day, I handed over the keys to Gypsy Rider’s new owner, Joe, rented a car and checked into a hotel to continue the search for my new abode (since I hadn’t received a return call from any of the messages I’d previously left.)

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After midnight, I found one that was in my price range, but still had all of the features I needed. I called Friday morning, and before I knew it, I was on my way to Camping World in Akron, OH. There was some work that needed to be done on it, so they put me up in the Fairfield Inn right next door to their location. Saturday, I returned my rental car at the Akron Airport, picked up my 29′ Minnie Winnie (I must find a new name for this one,) and began my return trip.

It has taken me two days to organize everything in my new space, but now, it feels like home!

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New Faucet Redeux

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It’s been nearly two months since I spent my first night in the RV.  Although I have running water, I haven’t used it for cooking or drinking because I just didn’t trust the water supply from campgrounds and truck stops.  Probably worrying over nothing, but whatever.  Instead, I’ve used bottled and distilled water by the gallon.  Needless to say, although inexpensive when compared to overall grocery tabs, the expense can add up if I continue this practice over the course of time.  To alleviate this monthly budget line item, I purchased a Brita Filter.  Excited to install it and discontinue purchasing the bottled water (which also utilizes space that can be used for other items,) I ripped the box open, attempted to twist it on my fairly new faucet, and quickly found that I have the strangest sized aerator ever created.

I made multiple trips to Home Depot and Lowe’s to find the correct aerator adapter, and stumped all of the sales associates when nothing they carried would fit.  I even contacted Brita and they sent me a number of adapters with full confidence that one would work.  Nope – – not even one was the right size.  Refusing to be frustrated any further, I purchased a Delta Bar Faucet, even less expensive than the first one.  To my pleasurable surprise, this one is not only taller than the first, but it also swivels – – good stuff!  As well, the Brita connected flawlessly without the need for an adapter.  I tasted my first glass of clear, crisp faucet water in my old Gypsy Rider and said goodbye to hauling 24 packs of bottled water and gallons of distilled water.  I’m getting this mobile life down to a science!

Stovetop Baking

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When I decided to purchase the Rialta, I was sold on every aspect except for the fact that I would have no oven (well, there’s a microwave, but that doesn’t count…) The idea that I would be unable to bake did not settle well by any means. Well, lo and behold, I found a solution. After much suspicion, I purchased an Omnia Oven.  I couldn’t believe that what appeared to be a typical bundt pan would allow me to bake without a convection oven.  I ordered it anyway, and although I was still suspect when I felt how light the box was when it arrived, I immediately made a blueberry quick bread.  Well, my doubt has waned and my skeptical tongue has been silenced!  In a matter of 40 minutes, I was feasting on warm blueberry bread with cinnamon honey butter that I whipped up while my Omnia was working it’s magic.  Granted, it doesn’t produce a well browned top as it would in an oven, but that’s a very small concession when I can still bake cookies and rolls and quiches… oh my!  So, I’ve got buttermilk biscuits on right now, and plan on being in brownie heaven tonight.  This life just keeps getting better and better!

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Faucet Upgrade

Like many other Rialta owners, I quickly found the galley faucet to be quite inconvenient. The factory install is a simple bathroom faucet, not at all unattractive, but too short to put pots and pans underneath to wash.

As I’m getting into the convenience (and thriftiness) of DIY, I decided to make a change. After spending the night at a local Home Depot lot, I was there bright and early to purchase a new faucet. I stayed right there in the lot, installed it, then made breakfast all before the sun had completely risen!

I dined on a scrumptious plate of turkey bacon, eggs and toast, then washed my skillet with ease underneath my brand new galley faucet. I just love this life!

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Upgrades, Maintenance and TP Utopia!

Okay, let me start by stating this… Nowhere in my wildest literary imagination have I ever imagined writing a piece about toilet paper, but since I have stumbled upon an RV TP dream, I must share it!  After spending a sum total of about three months in various hotels while waiting to make the big purchase, I sampled various brands of toiletries, coffees, paper products, etc.  Of course, my little Lola goes with me everywhere, and on one occasion, after wiping her little nose (yes, I treat her like a baby – – don’t judge me! Hahaha!) I dropped the tissue in the toilet and went back to finish her daily grooming.  When I returned  to the restroom, about five minutes later, the tissue had broken into tiny pieces in still water.  Now, for the average home dweller, this means nothing.  To an RVer, however, this is the TP Holy Grail!  You can take a look at the RV TP Test here.  Click the pic for the Amazon listing. 🙂

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I immediately did a search for the brand on Amazon, and there it was – – Georgia Pacific Envision.  The end all be all was that I placed an order for a case of 80 rolls for a grand total of $56.00, that’s 70 cents per roll!  The typical RV and marine TP averages $6.00 for four rolls… need I say more on this topic?  (Angelic voices singing in the background!)

I guess this is as good a time as any to mention another Amazon acquisition of note – – a collapsible tea kettle – – wonderful space saver and works like a charm!

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In other news, I have had a bit of work done on the Rialta in the past couple of weeks, including having a new battery installed, as well as a new sewage valve and a few other minor tweaks.  Tomorrow, I will have some work done on the refrigerator as I’m still having an issue getting it to run on propane.  Turns out, the culprit is a missing vent cover, which I found online for under $40.00.  I also need to have the tail light replaced.  Let’s just say, I’m adjusting to backing up in a near 21′ vehicle – – yada, yada, yada – – the tail light is no longer in one piece.  I was quoted $70-$90 for the part and after another visit to Amazon, I purchased the part and had it overnighted for under $50.00 (Touchdown!)

The last of my current upgrades include having a hardwood floor installed this week and a paint job which will be completed next week.  I’m having it painted a solid white so that stealth boondocking will be a great deal easier with the rig looking more like a work van than a motorhome.  Of course, I will post pics as soon as it’s all done!

Rialta Excitement and Woes…

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Okay…so it’s been eight days since I made the big purchase.  I have been busy transferring items into the RV, decorating to make it more like home, and trying my best to understand the inner workings of the rig.  Besides making myself look like the Three Stooges wrapped up in one little package while attempting to locate and fill the fresh water tank, I’m doing pretty well for a newbie.

I have run into a snag with the refrigerator, so I think I’m going to have to pull it out and do a thorough cleaning and maybe change the thermocouple.  Please don’t let my use of an actual technical term fool you; I haven’t a CLUE about this can of worms I’m about to open!  I’ve just been reading a great deal, and I’m under the assumption that this may be the reason I’m not able to keep the pilot lit to run it on propane.

At this point, I have running water, I’ve had an Alpine sound system and new speakers installed, I will have In Motion satellite with Direct TV installed tomorrow, as well as a new microwave.  I don’t have an operable refrigerator and I’m still scared to light the pilot on the stove (LOL! – – I think…)  I have put bedding on one mattress and situated the other side as a couch.  I put up draping to separate my living space from the cab area and placed a couple of throw rugs down to warm things up a bit.  Photos coming soon.

As the pic above clearly states – – I need help.  I have a former LeSharo owner and overall wonderful gentleman giving me great advice via email, but any tips, ideas, etc. by RVers who are a lot less, “green” than myself would be greatly appreciated.