April 24, 2016

Math Equation

     1370     Miles
           5     Days
           4     Repairs
       +  3    Cities

We just completed a road trip like no other. 

Tuesday, April 19:
We left the house a little later than we had hoped.  We still managed to stop at Best RV in Turlock to take a look at 'our' trailer.  The exact one we want wasn't found by the salesman so we opted to look at the same floor plan, just a different color scheme on the inside.  Once we sign the papers, I'll reveal the details.  After our appetite for another view was quenched, we drove to Fresno-our actual destination for the day.

The slide is located inside of a day care facility and they close at 6pm.  We arrived there just before 5 so we got right to work.  There was an additional crack that we weren't aware of yet we managed to complete the repairs before our deadline :-)

Ron finishes up the repairs by making it smooth
We had a room booked in Fresno for the night and proceeded to locate the hotel.

Wednesday, April 20:
Our second repair site is at the southern end of Fresno on a city owned neighborhood playground.  We ask our customers to send us photos so we know what we have to do.  There were three burn holes in one slide and a slew of what looked like stab marks on the exit of another slide.  We  brought along patch material and the necessary tools. 

our office of choice is a quiet park :-)
Since our next repair is a six to seven hour drive away in North Las Vegas, we head out as soon as we finished this playground.  I made a reservation that is prepaid so it's 'Vegas Or Bust'!  We'll be staying two nights at The Palms Casino.  We had a gorgeous view out our 21st floor window.  Darn it, I didn't take a photo...

Thursday, April 21:
The City of North Las Vegas hired us to repair a seam inside of their snake tunnel.  It's actually located in a huge regional park.  It took us a while to find the office so they could escort us out to the site.  We prefer close vehicle access since we have heavy equipment.  This slide was located quite a distance from the parking area so we were glad to have the permission of the park personnel.

Just as we were starting to unload the truck a family of geese strolled past.  The babies sure are cute.

The snake slide was quite a tricky repair.  For starters, it's a tunnel slide inside of a cement snake.  The broken seam is close to the top but still just far enough away from the entrance the make it very difficult to reach at times.  Secondly, there is only room for one person inside the tunnel so Ron did ALL of the work on this one.  He was a trooper but a few slang words were said during the repair process...

the most unique slide we've seen yet!

Ron stands just outside the slide entrance
After contorting himself in all sorts of positions, the seam is repaired.  The original damage was at the mounting points for the two sections.  Ron determined the damage was caused by the lower portion moving away from the upper portion so he decided it best to close up the entire seam.  The repair took quite a few hours.  We were glad we had already decided to spend the second night in Vegas.  We managed to walk a bit on "The Strip" before calling it a day.

Friday, April 22:
A phone call from the City of Santa Monica on Monday (the day before leaving) prompted us to make a slight detour on our trip.  We had left an extra day open for a fun day in Vegas on Friday but we adjusted to make the necessary repair in Santa Monica instead.  When we hit the road for good, there will be plenty of fun days.

After a hearty breakfast at the local Black Bear Diner we left Vegas and headed west on I-15.  After Barstow, it was all new scenery for us.  Luckily the commuter lanes on the 405 freeway are for two people.  It saved quite a bit of time off of the estimated 4 1/2 hour drive.  We did hit some traffic eventually.  We're both glad we don't live in a high traffic city.   

The park was easily located once I reread my notes and put the correct address into the GPS.  We first ended up at the wrong park and couldn't figure out why we didn't see the broken orange tunnel...

This part of town has metered parking so we lucked out with an end spot right outside the entrance gate.  It was a simple repair.  A city worker had accidentally hit the tunnel with his backhoe bucket when he was filling the playground with more sand.  Life happens.    

all done and ready for little ones again
happy children = happy parents
There were several parents in the playground with their little ones when we arrived.  We explained why we were there and one father was happy that the tunnel would be repaired so quickly.  We always use caution when there are children present so we asked that they play on other areas until we finished our work. 

Once our equipment was unplugged a little boy went through the repaired tunnel.  His big grin tells a great story and we sure like happy ending!!

Not wanting to pay a ridiculous amount of money to sleep in Santa Monica, we drove to Bakersfield for the night.  We wanted to drive part of the way home and still be close enough to make another stop on the way up the central valley to Sacramento.

Saturday, April 23:
I've covered the four repairs and three cities but what about day number five?

On our drive home we stopped at Best RV again and this time we worked with a different salesman.  He was more willing to make sure we saw our trailer with the correct color scheme :-)  We first went to the wrong one just to refresh our memory of the colors.  John also showed us how the couch turns into a bed and a few other features on the rig.  Then he drove us to the back lot area which houses our trailer.  It was closed up tight but we got to see what the inside looks like with the slides in.  We can easily get to the bathroom and we can open the fridge a smidge if necessary :-)  We really like the color scheme and we know we'll be happy living in it.

The dealership was quite busy.  We didn't want to hang around for the finance people to speak with us.  We were tired from our trip and just wanted to get home.  John told us about the online credit application process.  We'll take care of that in the next few days, send John and email that it's taken care of and hopefully we'll buy our trailer very soon!!
I'd say that was quite a successful trip :-)


  1. That was a marathon trip. You got alot done. I hope everything goes well with your application. Good Luck!

    1. 'Marathon trip' is the perfect description. That would've been a good title for this post. I'll have to remember that one :-) Thanks for the well wishes! Can't wait to be out there!!

  2. Wow, what a trip it was!! Those burns on the green slide make me angry :-(, but you sure made it look good as new! Sorry you missed Valley of Fire this time, but another job is a big deal. Sounds like you're really getting your name out there and should have lots to keep you busy after the house sells. AND you pick up the new trailer!!!! Can't wait to see it.

    1. Most of the plastic slide manufacturers incorporate a fire inhibitor in the material making process so it's self-extinguishing. However, there is still a degree of burning possible if the conditions are right. Nothing pleases me (us) more than knowing that we bring life back to damaged and vandalized playgrounds.
      We were thinking on our long, long drive that we only repaired four slides out of the hundreds or thousands that are potentially in the area we drove. It's simply mind boggling! And the fact that there is so much more than playground equipment that can be repaired makes this endeavor even more possible in our minds :-))
      Seeing the trailer again just gets us that much more excited for our next chapter to begin :-))) I can't wait for you to see it too!

  3. How exciting! Can't wait to see the pictures. I'm still catching up on my blog as well as reading. Didn't you already buy a trailer? Can't wait to see pics and get more info on your new one! What a busy and fun week of repairs! You guys do great work! Poor Ron having to spend so much time in the snake! Good thing he isn't claustrophobic!

    1. Still haven't bought a trailer. But we've been in love with this model for about two years now though. We first saw it at the RV show at Cal Expo. It feels like home whenever we step inside :-)
      Thanks for the compliment :-) Yeah, that snake was quite a task!


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