Monday we both woke up feeling…well good..since we were pretty confident we wouldn’t be getting a trailer that day. Several people went straight into their tear down, but since we weren’t first up on the schedule we decided to take a day off. We had a windshield replacement scheduled between 7:30am – 12pm, but after that we were free and clear. It was funny that we made it all the way through Alaska without a chipped windshield (pretty rare), but then as soon as we hit Montana we got a chip. Lee kept track of it using a magic marker and by this time it had spread halfway down the windshield. Since Florida insurance has $0 deductible for windshield insurance (it’s a state law and a great benefit of residency there) it was going to cost nothing, we just needed a place to get the work done.
Rain was in the forecast every day this week, and since we don’t have access to a garage that could be tricky. We did have access to a tent though, and after talking to Safelight Autoglass and getting their OK we pulled the truck into the tent. The whole process of setting up the appointment was super easy by the way. I called Nationwide Claims and through the use of simple prompts was sent to Safelite. The messages made it clear we didn’t have to use them, but since Lee actually worked on their live annual competition last year and got to see them in action he was a big fan. Now I have to say I am also. They communicated clearly, worked with us on the tent, showed up on time, and did a great job. Actually it was our absolute best repair experience on the road to date. I went up and talked to the guys and asked them if inside a Christmas tent was the weirdest place they had ever replaced glass and they said no, but it was the best smelling!! They didn’t elaborate on what the weirdest was and I didn’t ask, but I should have because I have been curious about it ever since.
After they finished we had to wait 30 minutes before driving the truck (24 hours before going through a power wash), so we ate some lunch and then we headed out. Whether we are gate guarding or in Quartzsite, we will probably be doing a lot of reading and luckily we are near many Half Price Book Stores. I know most people go to e-books, but I spend too much time looking at screens as it is, plus I like to hold a book in my hands. We had a huge library in our old house and over time have crammed books in all kinds of places in the RV. Now we pick books up and then drop them off at campgrounds we stop at, but we have missed bookstores over the last several months. Also, once a year, the Half Price Book Store offers an additional 20%, so we were both excited to be near one and have a day off to grab some books.
Lee has always been a fan of nonfiction, but he starting reading Louis L’Amour and really likes them because they are a fast, easy read. He wanted to read them in order though, so took advantage of the book stores to grab several. Armed with his list we went to three different books stores and had a great time. It was like a scavenger hunt. I was looking for a couple of good Asian recipe books (found one Chinese and one Vietnamese that looked good and I paid more than I normally would, but they are hard to find at library sales), and any complete fantasy series I had never read. I am a big fantasy/science fiction reader, but these aren’t the most common books found in local campgrounds. I have better luck at library sales, but the Half Price Bookstore has always been a great resource for fantasy books. I used to buy pieces of series and then hang onto the books until I could find the missing books, but I don’t have the space for that any more, so now I have to find the series in its entirety. That’s harder than you would think, but the multiple store visits helped me find a couple new authors to try.
We also passed by a Tanger Outlet mall and braved the crowds to get me two new pairs of Skechers. My tennis shoes and slip ons are over two years old and since I use them so much they have taken a beating. I thought I would take advantage of the post-Christmas sales to replace and although the prices weren’t as good as I had hoped, I did get the second pair half off. I found a pair of Skechers Go Walk in a wide width on sale and they are a hug for my feet. I splurged on the second pair of Relaxed fit Breathe Easy Shout Out tennis shoes and again, super comfortable. I have my Merrills for hiking, but for everything I just wanted comfortable shoes, and although $83 was more money than I wanted to spend it’s not that bad for two pairs of good shoes.
While we were in San Antonio, I also reached out to Cori and Greg to see if they were free for the evening. We had talked about going down and seeing the lights on the Riverwalk, but with the shopping crowds we were all a little tentative about that. Plus I got an email from my aunt Cathy with a gift certificate for Montana Mike’s restaurant. My aunt has been reading my blog posts and really enjoying them and she reached out to say she and my uncle wanted to buy us dinner for Christmas. I was incredibly touched by this. Not only because she was reading the blog, but also because she wanted to do something nice. It made us both feel closer to my grandmother Betty, who would definitely do something like this, and it made me feel closer to family. She went to some trouble also, finding a local steak place and then getting a gift certificate sent to us. Unfortunately the certificate didn’t arrive as expected to general delivery at the post office (I think it was because of holiday mail traffic) but instead of just letting it go she called the corporate office and got them to agree to an email with the gift card number on it. Really amazing.
The dinner was great, the company was great, and the gesture was much appreciated. We had appetizers, steaks, and shared a desert and it was all delicious. I did take a bunch of pictures though, because I knew she would want to see them, and wanted to share the experience with her. Thanks so much Aunt Cathy!
So it was a nice day off, and tomorrow we are back to tearing down the tent and finishing up. We were both really needed to get out of the tent and a day of books, shoe shopping, and dinner with friends was perfect!
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