We have had some crazy weather while we have been on our trip. Sixty MPH gusts in Holbrook Arizona, temperatures in the 20’s in Winnemucca, Nevada, flooding in Houston, Texas, and nearby hail in Waco, Texas. None of them have been as crazy as when we were in Madisonville, Louisiana. We were lying in bed and Marisa’s phone buzzed and gave us a little scare. There was a tornado warning and it said “People in this area need to take cover now!” with a big red trail of what looked like death and hell approaching our location. Being from Utah we didn’t really know what to do.
Luckily Marisa remembered that she had heard from someone in a previous campground that if a tornado is coming and there isn’t a storm shelter, the best thing to do is to go into a bathroom. We debated for a few minutes about whether we should wake everyone up and finally decided to do it.
We ran through torrential rain to the bathroom. We were smart enough to go into the women’s bathroom (they are usually cleaner right?) There was already a family in there so we felt a little safer since they seemed to know what they were doing. Madelyn was scared enough that she was shaking. We were soaking wet but it was a blessing for us since we were able to meet The Kleiner’s and the Spake’s. We were hiding in the bathroom for half an hour so we had plenty of time to talk and it was so great to make friends in the bathroom (first time I have ever said that.)
We were packing up and leaving the next day and the Kleiner’s were in a spot near us. Marisa found out that they were heading to the same destination as us a few days later than we were. We ended up having them over for dinner 4 states away in Destin, Fl. Look how much better we look when we aren’t cowering in a bathroom.
I have mentioned on this blog many times before that one of the greatest things about being on this trip is the people we meet. We were so blessed to make new friends in a bathroom during a tornado watch. I think our meeting each other was meant to be and I’m sure our paths will cross many times in the future. We feel so blessed that we are able to meet so many wonderful people on the road.
Yesterday the two youngest and I were at the pool during a windstorm. Our friends the Boyntons were there with us. Despite the wind, the kids were having a good time. We are used to high winds after living in Eagle Mountain, Utah. Apparently the tree at the pool isn’t used to high winds because it came crashing down right next to us.
Right before it came crashing down Madelyn says she had a feeling to get out of the hot tub so she went and got in the pool. The Boynton’s youngest also got out of the hot tub to play with Mason. Our friend Jourdan was sitting across the pool from me and she got up to tell me that she was going to take one of the kids to get some food. Literally 5 seconds after she got up this happened. The tree fell over into the hot tub and on the table Jourdan was at moments before!
Here is a picture of what it looked like from the other side.
It trashed the recreation center as well.
It’s amazing that no one was hurt. We were truly blessed and protected. There have been times in the past when this would have caused me to feel fear and even think that I am cursed. My perspective in life has changed a lot. Today I am full of gratitude that we were protected and watched over. I spent a lot of time last night on my knees thanking my Heavenly Father that my children and friends were watched over. I feel extremely blessed!
We didn’t get a truck to tow our fifth wheel until a week before our scheduled start date. Then it took us about a week to get the hitch installed so we didn’t have our truck ready until two days before we left. This meant that I didn’t have time to try towing our fifth wheel or even hooking it up until the morning of departure. Luckily for you, and unluckily for me, Marisa set up our GoPro on our dash to get documentation of our first morning.
I was so worried about getting the hitch hooked up that I forgot that you need to put trucks into park before getting out of them. Luckily it was in drive instead of reverse or it would have rammed backwards into our new home. Enjoy.
Have you wondered what it sounds like when gargoyles try to perform music by scratching their claws on chalkboards made from the souls of the most vilest of sinners? This music machine in Nevada City, Montana, probably comes pretty close to replicating that sound. While it is impressive to make a machine with that many moving parts working together, you would think that whoever made it would at least try to make it so it didn’t terrify innocent children and make the strongest of men to wish they had been born without ears rather than have to hear it again. Listen if you dare.
Our dog Lily has been overprotective since we started our trip. She barks at anyone that passes by our fifth wheel and we have had a few people complain about her to the camp hosts. We feel terrible that we have disturbed others and we were even warned by one camp host that we would have to leave if we didn’t get her to be quieter.
We have tried a lot of different things and we thought we might have to give her away or take her to the animal shelter. Our last act of desperation was to buy a shock collar that gives her a little jolt if she barks. I felt like it was kind of cruel, but my hope was that if she learns not to bark, she wouldn’t get shocked, and we could keep her. The collar seemed to be working fine but then she started barking again. I decided to test the collar to see if it is working. Maybe I need to find a better way to test the collar. Ouch.
I love my dear bride with all of my heart. She has so many wonderful qualities and we are very supportive of each other. There are a few things we happen to disagree on. One of those is her sense of direction.
When we are on our way to a destination she will insist that she knows how to get there. She will proceed to tell me to turn down a road. Then after driving around aimlessly she will take it back and say it isn’t the right road. Then she will insist that she knows where to go, and have me turn on another road. Then she will take it back after We continue driving down erroneous paths until we finally turn on the right road, and find our destination. Marisa will then tell me that the fact that we arrived at our destination is proof that she knew where she was going. I would argue that the fact that we made 9 wrong turns means that she didn’t know where we were going and at some point she will have to be right since there aren’t an infinite amount of streets to turn down.
This process is not acceptable when we are pulling our living quarters behind our truck. I prefer to rely on google maps instead of her sense of direction. Hence the following discussion.
Something is wrong. I pull a 42 foot trailer behind my truck. The only thing I had to do to drive it on the road was buy it. No licenses, no training, just hook it up and go. In a world full of regulations and laws, how has this happened? How is this acceptable? I’m not complaining as I feel there is already too many laws but it seems crazy that I can drive our fifth wheel without any classes.
I’m going to be painfully honest with you. As embarrassing as it is to admit, I am full of fear when I think about navigating into campgrounds and parking lots. I wake up at night in cold sweats dreaming that I drove down an unknown road without a place to turn around, trapped forever. A few times in traffic, although I appear calm on the outside, on the inside I want to curl up in the fetal position and sob. In the video below, Marisa describes an incident we had towards the beginning of our trip (2 weeks ago) when we were leaving and abandoned Lowe’s parking lot.