It warmed up quickly this morning and the skies were clear blue again.
We had extended our stay here at General Coffee State Park until Sunday, and Linda walked over to the bathhouse for a shower ... just in her robe. Before she entered, a guy said "You must be Linda." :)
Last night we saw a large Cardinal fifth wheel come in and it parked in the next site over from us. As it turned out, Jim & Judy have been reading our Journal for a few years. They are planning to start full-timing next year and just bought their fifth wheel.
After Linda's shower, we both went over to their rig and got to know them. Jim is retired Navy and a retired teacher. Judy plans to retire from banking next year.
Like many others, they went back and forth as to whether they wanted a motorhome or a fifth wheel. Ultimately, they decided on a fifth wheel. Jim found a beautiful full body paint 2011 Cardinal on eBay. It turned out to be a "repo", but was in great shape. He got a terrific deal and drove to Texas to pick it up.
They didn't have any large RV experience, so this week was their "check-out" trip and, since they saw we were fairly close to their house, they came here. Unfortunately, it didn't start out too well. When they got back from dinner last night, they couldn't get the door unlocked. So, they ended up spending their first night RVing in a hotel. Wish they would have knocked on our door. :)
This morning, a locksmith came out and got them in. With that out of the way, we started helping them get familiar with their systems. They had plugged in the electric, but hadn't hooked up water or turned on the propane.
I showed Jim how the propane changeover regulator works, and we got the propane on. Inside, Linda showed Judy how to use their heat pump and then the furnace.
Their range/oven is similar to ours, so Linda showed Judy how to light the burners. Then, since we just took the inside of our oven apart for troubleshooting, Linda took out the oven components to show Judy the pilot light and thermocouple and how it lights. Then she put the components back, and had Judy do the stand-on-your-head procedure to light the pilot.
Jim had already put water in the fresh tank, so we turned on the water pump. Nothing. Then he hooked up the campground water. Nothing.
We checked and re-checked everything and looked for a main water shut-off. After a couple of phone calls, Jim was told ther was no main shut-off for the water. A tech suggested a clogged water filter, but Jim had just put in a new filter.
Eventually, I went to our rig and got our water filter tool so we could get his filter off. I don't know much, but I could quickly tell the filter cartridge wasn't the right size. It was completely blocking the entire water system. Once we took out the cartridge, everything worked like it should, and Linda tested all the outlets inside with Judy. And she showed her how to fill the toilet by lifting the foot pedal - something that we learned on our own a few months after being on the road. :)
Next, we turned our attention to the water heater.
I just wanted to be sure water was actually going into the tank so we didn't burn out the heating element. The problem for me was figuring out the by-pass system for winterizing, since we've never winterized. Earlier, I crawled into the basement and opened the compartment where the back of the water heater tank was fairly easy to get to. I turned the valves so water could get into the tank.
Once we got the water going, we verified there was water in the tank. Now we had to figure out the switches. There was one on the water heater control behind the access door outside and one inside. Both our propane and electric switches are inside, and we have an Atwood water heater while they have a Suburban. So, with one switch inside and one outside, so we needed to determine which was which. The gals turned on the one in the inside control panel and the propane fired up. I was surprised you had to go outside and take off the access panel to turn it on electric, but that's the deal. We left it to see if the electric was working.
We spent a couple hours doing an orientation and system testing. The fifth wheel was sold by a car dealer, so Jim got only a cosmetic walk-through. It was fun showing them all the things that others showed us or that we learned on our own over the years. Hopefully, they are feeling more comfortable. :)
Later on, they picked us up and took us to dinner. We went to a local favorite called the Country Cabin Steakhouse. It was off the beaten path, and the kind of place we enjoy visiting.
We had a very nice meal with lots of food - plenty of leftovers as the steaks were huge and quite tasty. Of course, the company was wonderful.
It was a great day with new friends and another reminder of why we love this lifestyle so much. :)