Saturday, October 27, 2012


We have been in a routine. We wake up and workout. I have been running around 3 miles a day. Next week I will increase to 3.5 ~ 4 miles in hopes to get at 5 miles a day by next month. My goal is to run 100 miles a month. Then, lay out on the beach to work on my sun tan. Other days we go on base to get food or just drive around getting to know what is in the area. Lastly, around 6:00 pm (CST) we walk out to the beach to see the the dolphin eat and watch the sun set.

We are going to try and go out at least once a week for sightseeing. This week we went to Pensacola Light House. It is located on NAS base. We saw sightseeing buses so even if you are military, you can get on base to see it. The House is free to tour. To climb the step to the top of the light house is $5 and $3 for 12 & under and 65 & over. No flip flops. We were wearing flip flops so we did not get to climb to the top. The light house is still on our to do list. After looking in the house and finding out it was haunted. Yes you heard me right haunted. It was even on an episode of Syfy "Ghost Hunters".

Right across the street is the Navy Air Museum, also on base and we saw tour buses pulling up to the door.  We must have ran out of luck, because the museum power was out all morning and they did not open their doors for visitors. We did find out that there is no cost to enter, except to use the fight simulator and watch IMAX films. The security guard informed us that it was an all day event to view everything inside and outside. It's a free day of entertainment and is on our list to do.   

Next weekend is the Blue Angel Air Show on base 2 & 3 November and it will be open to the pubic.

Even if you do not love baseball, but would like to have a Doritos Loco Taco from Taco Bell. Thanks to Angel Pagan (San Francisco Giant Outfielder) everyone in America can get a free Doritos Loco Taco. Taco Bell has a promotion for the 2012 World Series if any player steals a base Taco Bell would give away free taco. In game 2 in the 8th inning Angel Pagan had a stolen base and event the broadcaster on FOX told viewers how to receive the taco. I hope you enjoy your free taco.

Monday, October 22, 2012


     Normally, a 958 miles in 15 hr 46 min turned into 1,887.1 miles in 16 days. We enjoyed the trip and seen lots of interesting places. We are staying at the Blue Angles Campground in Pensacola, FL (Close to Naval Air Station). We are located in the Central Time Zone, something we have to get use to. We hope to enjoy what the northern pan handle of Florida has to offer before heading down south in February for baseball spring training. Most of the blog until then maybe dry and routine daily life, but we will continue to  visit nearby states and attractions during our stay. If we are within a 3 hours drive one way we will try and take a day trip.

     This weekend we spend the days relaxing and getting to know the area. We found the base exchange, base commissary, base gas station and our bank. Finally, my bank is close to me. This week we will look for the veteran's club American Legions and VFW. 

     Out RV site is under lots of trees and acorns are falling all the time. When they hit the roof most of the time they roll off, but when they do it sounds like a pachinko parlor (Japanese example) or dice at a craps table (American example). The Campsite sites right along the Ocean banks. There are several fishing docks (I need to get a salt water pole and fishing license first), water craft launch, two beaches, a small marina ran by military, fitness center (no free weights) mini golf, frisbee golf paintball and laundry room. The best part of it all, there is not a cloud in the sky during the day and the sunset view is breathtaking at night. 

Friday, October 19, 2012

(PART 4 ... Final)

DAY 14

    After getting the RV secure for the road we went to the Commissary to get needed 
rations for the next few days. We decided to take just the RV to gas station so we could 
reverse if needed. Good thing, because there was more parked cars then usual and had to.
If we had the car tow on we would be stuck and could not move. The gas station was set 
up for cars and not RV's. Also, the gas station was giving away free pack of Reese's peanut better cups when your filled your tank of 8 gallons or more. I filled up 28 gallons, but could still only get one pack.We checked out and hit the road around 11:00 am.

                                    When putting the tank hose back away, I found a little visitor.

On our way South on I 49 to I 10 East we were crossing highway over swamp land. We arrived 
at the Atchafalaya, LA Welcome Center just as it was closing and was luck enough for 
them to let us in. We got maps and information on New Orleans to read at night. We could 
have stopped there for the night, but thought we could get a few more hours on the road. We
Finally stopped at a truck stop to spend the night. It was in a small town about 4 miles 
off the main highway. To our surprise, there was only one truck on the lot. We read the
visitors guide and played cards before going to sleep. I won most of the game.

DAY 15

     Woke up and still only one truck on the lot. However, some of the truck loads were 
gone. Trucks must have picked them up while we were sleeping. I must have sleep good,
because I did not wake up.

     As we passed the Super dome I had flashbacks of the news when Katrina hit New Orleans. 
I was crossing the highway overpass where I saw people living on right next to the Super dome. 
Less than a mile we got off the highway and arrived at the visitors center. There is no 
room for a RV to park in the parking lot. There is a RV site to stay over night. However, 
we did not want to spend the night. There was a big empty parking lot on the back side of 
the school that side adjacent to the visitors center. A cop stopped us to ask if everything
OK and I said I was just looking for parking. He said the open parking lot would be OK.
We walked into the visitors center to get maps of the French Quarters and locations of the 
two National Parks. We Arrived in the French Quarters and visited Jean Lafitte National 
Park and New Orleans Jazz National Park. The national Park rangers hold free concerts in 
the hall. Unfortunately, we arrived after the last concert of the day, but everywhere up 
and down streets are people play jazz in restaurants or on the streets. We even stopped 
at the Hard Rock Cafe to get a beer, ....add another glass to my collection. We stopped by
Deanies to get catfish and shrimp dinner. The wife has never had catfish before and we both
enjoyed the meal. After I few hours walking we headed back to the visitor center and the 
host ask how was our trip. We then went back to the RV to get back on the road. We finally
stopped at a Flyig J (#676) in Gulfport, MS to spend the night. There was only one RV spot
left open. All the other spots was full of cars and vans. Not sure why they did not park in
car spots, but I got in the spot and stop getting upset. We saw people sleeping under their
truck. I guess it was just to hot inside the truck. We read the Mississippi tour guides 
and played cards before going to sleep. Yes, i won most of the games again.

                                                           Cafe Du Monde famous for beignet

Beignets taste soooooo good 

 Me with a cut out full size of Sheldon Cooper (Jim Parsons) from the big Bang Theory. Standing in front all place in a comic book store window. The Big Bang Theory is one of my top 5 comedy shows on TV.

                                              Side streets of the French Quarters in New Orleans

Welcome Center rest stop in Mississippi

DAY 16

    Woke up to a rain storm. The wife thought it was a typhoon. The RV was rocking back 
and forth and the rain storm passed in a few minutes. I did the rest of the driving in the poorest weather conditions we have seen all trip. We crossed into the Florida State line and the sign said, "The Sunshine State". Sunshine State my A$$, it was cloudy and raining. We arrived at our destination, Blue Angles Campground in Pensacola, FL. The site sits on Military land and only active duty, retired or DoD (Department of Defense ie Government Employees)  can stay, but I think anyone can visit the beaches, fishing pier and boat dock. For active or retired full hook-up is $20 a  night or $540 a month and DoD $22 a night or $600 a month. Electric and water only for active or retired is $13 a day or $350 a month and DoD is $14.50 a day or $400 a month. No matter what way you decide to camp it is a bargain for any snow bird compared to other Florida campground in the winter months. The only down side I have seen so far is there is no free internet. You have to buy internet access from the Navy Exchange either by the day, week or month and the account can only be used one device at a time. We are sharing our access logging off when we are finished so the other person can use the internet. A 30 day internet access account is $21.95.     
Welcome Center rest stop in Florida

The view from the steps of our RV looking out over the Gulf of Mexico


Tuesday, October 16, 2012

(PART 3)


     Departed Hot Springs, AR and on our way to Shreveport, LA. We made a pit stop at Oaklawn race track and casino in Arkansas.  We both got a $10 free play members card. I wanted to take the money and run, but the wife want to have some fun and play slots. Needless to say we blew through the $20 and soon was heading back to the RV. 

Look who finished in first place!

While is Shreveport my goal is to research my family's history before they moved North to Ohio. I have the address where my mother was born and spent the first 13 months of her life. I will drive by tomorrow and see what is at that address. I used Google map and don't see the family store that use to be there, but see a house. Hopefully, it is still the original home. If I have time (tomorrow is Friday), I will stop by City Hall and see if I can find any information. I also got in contact with some family member (on my Grandmother side) a few months ago and are going to try and meet them as well. 

     When we arrived at Flying J's in Texarkana, AR I had to go back inside the RV and change into shorts. The temperature must have risen 20 plus degrees to over 85 F. I can tell we are in the South. We finally made it to Barksdale AFB, LA home to the Air Force B-52. About a 10 minute drive to downtown Shreveport. The base campground is on the back side of the base away from everything. For $18 a night we got full hook-up with 30 amp, water and sewer. We can receive TV station on our antenna, but have not turn the TV on yet. There is no meter on the electric so I guess there will be no electric bill when I pull out. As of right now we will spend the weekend and depart Monday. While driving around the base to see where things are located we saw a turtle crossing the road and the wife just had to take a picture. Before we started full time RVing, the wife saw a new born turtle in the street and kept it for two years before releasing it back to the wild. I was holding my breath that she would not pick this one up too. Beside, there would be no place to keep it like we did the other one.

     I will try and drive along the flight line and shoot a video of all the airplanes on display. There must be over 20 lined up on both sides of the street. If the video looks good, I'll post it. The video turned out good. Except for the very end, when my wife who was driving started to rubber necking and watch what I was recording almost drove off the road. Sorry, I tried to load the video via WiFi and kept timing out or received an error.  At least I have a picture.

DAY 10

     I stopped by the address where my mother was born. Unfortunately, I could not find the address number. There was one house 3857 and the house next to it was 3905. If the house numbering was like this, I more than likely would not have any luck finding information on the property at City Hall. The neighborhood has numerous abandoned homes, it is ran down and in the slums. A major street that leads to I 20 E and W run to the pull out of the side street. There is some kind of factor that runs along the other side of the busy street and on the other side of the highway is home of the Independence Bowl Stadium that is owned by the city of Shreveport.

     On our way back to the base, we stopped by ... you guessed it another Casino (Diamond Jacks). We got a members card and received a $5.00 free play. The money was on the card and could not cash it out and take the money. You had to play the free money. The wife played $1 slot and pulled the lever 5 times and was done. I played the penny slots and in about 5 minutes when all the free money was gone I was up $2.95 and walked out with money in my pocket.

     We went to the Commissary and was surprised by the cheap prices of food. It has been over two years since we shopped at a base commissary and forgot how cheap the prices are from regular stores.

     I talked to the military campsite host and he informed me that just last week they caught 11 alligators on base that measured between 9 and 12 feet long with max weight of 470 pounds. There was a picture of the largest one they caught in the registration office. I will try and take a picture of the picture and post it.

This is where they caught the alligators (on base)

DAY 11

     Today we took a road trip in the car and headed East in I 20. I set the cruse control on 70 MPH and did not have to hit the break for almost 3 hours were we visited Poverty Point Earthworks National Monument. It is not actually part of the National Parks anymore, but still show on the National Park webpage. It about a 30 minute drive after getting off the Highway. The coast is $4 for ages 13-51, 12 & under and 52 & over free. I asked for military discount, but they did not have it. However, the lady host was kind and let me in for free. We watched about a 15 minute video of the site and walked around the small exhibit of artifacts that was excavated during the research. We arrive just in time to be able to see the video and the guided tour by golf cart around the site. This way we just did not see we understood what we saw. When it was over we drove our car back though the road stopped, took pictures and climbed one of the mounds. On our drive the wife thought she saw a mountain lion, turned out to be only a deer. When we were in the middle it looked small, but after the tour and we were on the outer edge you can actually see how big the settlement was and understood how nearly 3,000  people could live in this place. The "Bird Mound" at once stood over 100 feet high, but now only 72 feet high. On the down side the head of the bird is now missing and was believed that treasure hunter thought that if there was any treasures buried it would be in the head. If you are searching to complete your National Park Passport Stamp Book or looking to step back in time and see how humans lived in 1500 BC I recommend this National Park.        

     The water source for the people, at one time the water was as high as I stood when taking this picture.          
Two of the three spots where at one time large pole stood to track the sun movement and used as a calendar marker.

                                  The estimated size of a tent where four peopled lived every 50 feet apart.

                            One of six rows at one time stood 4 feet tall and the tent homes build on top.

                                 The remains of Mound A "Bird Mound" current view is of left wing.
                                                   The wife's mountain lion.... only a deer.

DAY 12

     Today is Sunday and was woken by rain around 5:00 am. It has rained off and on all morning. We decided to extend our stay on the base campsite one more day and will depart on Tuesday. We are going to do laundry and watch NFL week 6 games. Let hope I do better this week than last week. We ate dinner at Louisiana Kitchen Popeye's Chicken in Louisiana. Just like we had Philadelphia Steak sandwich in Philadelphia last year. The day turned out to be pretty nice and sunny the rest of the day. With only the Monday game left for week 6 I have another losing week at 4-8-1. Good thing I'm not in Las Vegas.

DAY 13

     Got a call from family in Louisiana. Unfortunately, they were out of town over the weekend with their grandchildren and are busy this week too, so we will not be able to met. Instead we made a road trip to Cane River Creole National Historical Park. Located about 1 1/2 hour drive South on I 49 from Shreveport. Another National Park added to my Passport Book. We walk the plantation and toured the main house. We were also allowed to pick up pecans that fell from the trees.

           When they finished their wine the placed in the garden and used empty bottle instead of bricks.
                                             TV from the 1950's or 1960's (If I remember correctly)
                                                                  Master bedroom
Back in the day when a traveler passed by, they would stop to pass along the latest news and receive a meal and nights sleep before heading out in the morning to continue their journey.  This is the "strangers room".

                             Formal dinning table. Do you like the manual ceiling fan, or fly swatter.

                                                            Pecans we picked up.

How they look inside... taste good too!

Tomorrow we will be heading South to New Orleans. It should take about 9+ hours. The speed limit in LA highway is 70-75 MPH and the RV starts to shake and sway back and forth around 65 MPH so I added a few hours. We will do the trip in two days and spend the night on road at a rest stop somewhere along the way.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

 Ohio to Florida
(PART 2)

     Went to sleep with the temperature inside the RV at 77 F and woke up at 48 F, both of us did not want to get out of the bed. But, it was so cold that we had to use the bathroom and it forced us to get up. The campsite was on a pull through lot, but right under 4 different trees so we did not open the awning. However, during the night acorns was falling on the roof and kept waking me up. We stayed on the lot until 11:00 am at check out time. We then headed back to the welcome center. The wife had trouble posting to her blog in the campsite, and the connection was stronger in the welcome center. We pulled out our chairs and small table and ate lunch outside. The front parking lot was full so we had to park in overflow and there was no one, so we parked in the back and took up about 10 parking spots.

     We finally hit the road and put in a few hours. We pulled into a Flying J to get our propane tank full and then drove some more. We had a Pilot and Flying J gas station location and noticed that there was one in Tennessee and that they had RV parking so we set off to try and get there before sunset. When we arrived we are the only RV so far. The parking spot is a little small, but managed to park with only the front about two feet out of the parking line. We thought that this was better then the back of the car out two feet and in the way if someone else tried to park later tonight. We are at Flying J #720 in Fairview, TN off of I-40 & Hwy 96 Exit 182. There is a Denny's located on site and a Dunkin Donuts across the street at another gas station. 


     We departed from Flying J's and continued heading South to Memphis. As we passed by open fields on the highway the wife thought that she saw snow, it was only cotton filed.

         We stopped in Memphis at Graceland and took pictures of Elvis Presley Estate from the street.   

     We were close to the Mississippi boarder so we crossed over to see the casino and try to win some gas money. I showed my retired Military ID and the host who checks to see if you are over 21 shook my hand and thanked me for my service. He also ask what my secret was to look young. I told him I eat Asian food and he and my wife both laughed at the same time. We both started with $20.00. We could not get free play, because we already had a player card when we visited Las Vegas. After about three hours we profited $2.12 total. I won $.52 and the wife $1.60. I earned enough points on my slot card for a free buffet dinner, but the wife did not so I passed on the free meal. instead we ate dinner inside the RV in the casino parking lot. Then, hit the road once again.

We crossed over three state lines in less than one hour (Mississippi, Tennessee and Arkansas). We are spending the night at the Arkansas Welcome Center rest stop parking lot. I can now add Tennessee and Mississippi to state visited map. Before going to sleep we played UNO and I won 6 of 10 games with a score of 184 to 333. I told you I would win our next game night!


     NFL week 6 came to an end and I saw NO games for the first time all season. I did however make my picks before starting our trip and I did not do well. I was 5-9 and my season total is now 37-38-2.

     Headed West to little Rock, AR with a stop at Little Rock AFB. The base was big, but I was not impressed with the exchange. The commissary was closed on Monday's so was unable to see inside. However, there was lots of planes all over the base in open lots to display their History. we took pictures from the RV hoping not to get pulled over for taking pictures on a Military base.

 We then,headed South to hot Springs National Park. We had to find the parks campsite first. Did not want to drive the RV all over downtown with narrow streets. Pulled into our lot with no hook-up for $10 a night ($5 if over 65 years old). They also have full hook-up for $24 a night ($12 if over 65 years old). There is no staff in the office, but have one on site if you need help checking in. You have to pay for your site by a machine. We took the no hook-up site and will stay 3 days. There is a free dump station and fresh water, so there is no real reason to get full hook-up for only a few days. Besides, we have not watched TV so far and if we got a full hook-up site we might just turn the heater on and stay inside and watch TV all day. We are on the road to see America and a little cold in the morning just makes you get dressed and get out side faster. Our view from the site is mountain and water stream. I even cooked dinner.


     Today, we visited the national Park Welcome Center were I got the National Park stamp and sticker. By luck we arrived a few minutes before a tour started and jumped in line to see a free guided tour of Historical Bath House on Bath House Row. We then drove the car up Ouachita Mountain to Mountain Tower. The tower is 216 feet tall and has a panoramic view of Hot Spring, AR. The coast is $7 Regular, $6 55+years old and $5 special for military. There are coupon all over downtown and in Hot Springs Visitor book for $1 off (except for special rates). We had a few empty jugs so we filled them up with local spring water. We labeled them so we would not get mixed with the spring water we got from Ohio.


     At 7:30 am, received a cell phone wake up call from my mom. She wanted to check in with me to see how things were going. Went outside and noticed something tried to eat our green onion last night. Today is a relax day to update our blogs and take a break from moving all day from sun rise to sun set. We drove up the West mountain to see the view. The view was the same as mountain Tower, but we have time and did it anyways. We ate dinner at McClard's Bar-B-Q. When i first walked in, it looked like a time in the past of stories I only heard of. You seat yourself and the waitress arrives with the menu. The service is great. They greet you when you arrive in the door and always polite. We did not know what something was on the menu and they could not explain what it was, so they gave us a sample. This was not a small sample as in big name dinners, it was a good size. We ordered a pound of ribs and fries with drinks and was under $20. I'm not a big rib fan, but this is one of the best I have tasted. It's fall off the bone meat and sauce was excellent  McClard's is were President Clinton ate when he returned home while visiting from the White House and sometimes ordered to deliver to the the White House. There are pictures and a small library of books on him on display. There are also pictures of other famous people who visited just to taste their Bar-B-Q Rib. Some that I can remember was Aerosmith (Band) and  Jerry Jones (Dallas Cowboys Owner). There were more but can't remember them all.... SORRY!
I searched the internet and found their homepage: