I kept being reminded of those old late night commercials where the announcer would say "But wait! You ALSO get...", and then you would be told of some great thing that would accompany your original purchase. However, these things that we were "Also getting" were not things we wanted...
Saturday night we finished packing up the RV, and hooking the boat onto the Blazer. This was the first vacation we had ever planned to drive separately. We would be meeting up with several of my husbands siblings at Bahia Honda State Park, near Big Pine Key. A week of fun in the sun was just ahead of us.
Our newly renovated camper...
As is usual for us, we went to bed way too late and got up early to start our day. We wanted to be in Key Largo by 1pm so we could have lunch at our favorite Mexican place, Senor Frijoles. It was a typically hot and humid Florida day in July, as we headed down the Interstate.
Shortly after we had gotten on the Florida Turnpike, hubby called me and said the RV was having some trouble, we'd need to take the next exit. This was one of those big looping exits that curve in a large circle and end up taking you through a toll booth and spitting you out onto another road. As we took the curve, I noticed Hubby slowing down, then he pulled off the road. However, I am not quite as efficient at quick moves (I had the blazer with boat in tow), and I passed him. Immediately after he pulled off, a guardrail began and I could not pull over. I passed through the toll booth, asking the older man inside where I could turn around to get back to my husband. He didn't know.
I later found a Police Officer and explained my problem, he gave me directions to get to the exit so I could meet up with my husband and we could work on this problem together. I was completely unfamiliar with the area, did not have my GPS with me and got bad directions. After an hour and a half (no exaggeration!), I caught up with my husband, sitting under a shade tree off the side of the exit ramp.
He managed to get the RV to coast a bit and we made it through the toll booth with me paying both our fees so he wouldn't have to stop. We got it to putt it's way to a parking lot where he was better able to find out what was going on.
Fuel Pump. He's an excellent mechanic, so it wasn't hard for him to determine the problem. However, he needed to drop the fuel tank, and that would mean parts that he didn't have on hand.
After finding out there was an Auto Zone not far down the road, he said he could probably get the RV to drive there by manipulating a part of the engine. He removed the engine cover (which sits between the driver and passenger seats). The engine was exposed as he manuevered a part to get it moving down the road.
I was in front of him, driving slowly, and we were talking on our cell phones on speaker phone to keep constant contact. I noticed in my rear view that he was slowing down quite a bit behind me, and I heard muffled sounds on the phone. He said something that I couldn't quite make out...but it sounded like "it died". Assuming the RV had given up on him, I calmly said "Ok, let me turn around at this gas station and I'll come get you".
I turned around and as I was waiting at the light to turn, I noticed the RV slowly drifting across 3 lanes of traffic. I also noticed what appeared to be steam coming from the hood, or so it seemed to me. I thought it must be the radiator, and that he was pulling over to that side of the road. However, after I turned at the light and came upon the location, the RV was now on the inside of the 3 lanes and stopped in a turning lane next to the median, there was a car stopped in front of it and 2 men were standing in the median. So was my husband, he had picked up the phone and was now talking to me.
What I found out next would throw us into a whirlwind for the next 3 days...or weeks...
"The Lord will protet him and keep him alive,..."
Come back tomorrow for part 2