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Morale Boosters August 6, 2009

Posted by gregquill in Uncategorized.

1. It’s been a month since my contract was prematurely ended in Wisconsin. I have prospects in New York State, New Jersey (3), and Florida. The clients are due to select the contractors starting August 17th. I had learned this before, but apparently I need to learn it again: “urgent” does not mean the same thing to me as it does to the Lord. He acts in His good time, and it always works out well. This is how I am being taught patience.

2. During his last deployment to Iraq, Afghanistan or Iceland (they won’t say which), my son couldn’t send or receive emails, and couldn’t call. In this deployment, I am now sending and receiving emails to and from him daily, and today, I got a voice mail on my cell phone from him! God bless!

3. I told some family members that it is getting tough financially. I stay in Wal-Mart parking lots where it’s free; I have found some great half-price full service RV campgrounds (all water, electric and sewer hookups) for less than $20/night; and I have a good amount of food though not much appetite. As long as Lacy has her chicken, I am fine. And two of my family have sent me money, which I regard as generous, unearned loans. Thank God.

4.  Last week, I took the trailer down a two-lane country road in rural Ohio, looking for a turnaround to get back on the freeway.  I finally found one in a small town, so I slowly turned down it.  It turned out to have very sharp, narrow left turns, and though I went as slowly as I could, the trailer is 33 feet long and the truck is about 24.  That means on a tight turn, the middle of the trailer is going to cut into the corner, and boy did it.  I scraped a bunch of saplings – they looked like bamboo from my days in Vietnam – and though I went slowly, they caused some scrapes on the trailer body.  I paid the nearest homeowner for the damage (not much but she was grateful).  Four days later, when I was leaving a RV camp and I drove to the sanitary drain pit, I discovered the rest of the damage:  all of the drain piping for toilet waste and for wash water waste was gone.

That’s a serious problem: the tanks must be drained.  My indicator panel showed 1/3 full on the wash water, and more on the toilet waste though there is a technical problem because even quick dissolving toilet paper will block the sensors, giving a false high reading.
The valves were still in place, but everything else was gone: piping, special connectors, caps.  I figured that a repair shop would charge $350 minimum to fix it, and I cannot afford that.  So I thought about what I’d need, and I stopped at the first Home Depot and bought $28 worth of 3” PVC pipe, elbow, cement, 1-1/2” drain hose for wash water waste, some rubber caps, some hose clamps and a pack of 1/4”-20 nuts and bolts 1” long.  Once I arrived at the new campground, I crawled under the trailer and made the repairs.  With the nuts and bolts, I fashioned the locking connector for the toilet drain hose on the PVC pipe.  I used my battery operated saw to cut the pipe, and I sliced the rubber caps so they would fit the pipes.  (It’s not legal to drive with the waste pipes uncapped even though the valves are closed, because valves sometimes leak.)  I let the cement set overnight, and I tested everything this morning.  I had to cut into the insulation around the wash water valve (the tanks are in a heated compartment to prevent freezing) to re-connect the operating lever for the valve, and then everything worked!  A leak on the wash water line (not contaminated, just soapy water from the sinks and shower), none from the toilet drains. I’ll get some soft rubber to fix the leak.  That’s my first experience with cementing PVC, and the whole campground in Somerset, PA heard me whoop “EUREKA!”

5. Little nagging things are getting done. The screen door popped open on its own, so I have taken to putting up collapsible shelves across it to prevent Lacy running out when I want it open for cool air. Today, I fixed the door by attaching a common rubber band to the inside handle, loosening a screw above it, and looping the rubber band over the screw so it pulls up on the handle. Problem solved. But I still put something in the way to keep my friend alive.

6. Tomorrow we’re on the road again. Perhaps a Wal-Mart Super Center. I’m in southwest PA, and I’d prefer not to waste diesel fuel until I have a destination. I accomplished my goal: get to a place within striking range of my job prospects. Now, it’s time for not spending money and learning patience, His way!

7. One more small boost: the left rear tail light on the trailer stopped flashing. I put in a new bulb, and it lighted with the tail lights but would not flash. I didn’t want to take it in to Ford, but I didn’t want some trooper making quota on me either. I slept on it, and when I woke up I decided, on a hunch, to spray the plug contacts between the truck and the trailer on the electrical wire. I figured that the flasher flashed everything else – truck and trailer – and left rear doesn’t have its own flasher, so… It worked!




1. gregquill - August 9, 2009

Sandy, if we were Chinese, the son I wrote about would be #2 son – John. Tom is the eldest, and Kevin is #3 son. Kathy, the youngest, is simply THE DAUGHTER.

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