Saturday, March 09, 2013




Our late Friday afternoon blue skies didn’t last long & we woke up to a heavy overcast Saturday morning.  So heavy in fact the clouds finally sank to ground level & we found ourselves in a drizzly fog.  Kelly took Pheebs for a quick walk.  I refused to go out of the house & stuck close to my electric heater under my chair.  Temps got down into the mid 30’s overnight & barely got over 40 today.  Predicted highs next week….85F.  Oh really!!


Kelly was out the door early & headed over to North Ranch for their annual big March garage sale.  I remember it was a year ago when Kelly cruised that sale & came home with a Jeep load of stuff.  Those were some of the earliest furnishing we had for the house. 


In fact it was 1 year ago today we drove to Prescott & inked our offer on the house with the Real Estate agent.  I remember it as a very stressful day.  Phone calls to Canada had to be made, faxes sent, an American bank account opened, etc. etc.  Just the kind of stuff I dislike so much & just the kind of stuff Kelly has the patience & smarts to do so well.


It would be another week or so before we knew the house deal was final but we had already begun making changes to the property.  I had a big full scale clean-up underway.   The Real Estate agent never did know that we would soon be in the house painting & moving in a few bits of furniture etc.   And he never did know that we had the whole house stuccoed either.  It was a ‘huge gamble’ we took but we were confident the deal would swing in our favor…..and it did:))


Bob from THE CARETAKER CHRONICLES had a few questions awhile back about our experience with purchasing a vehicle in the States.  Well, it’s been quite an experience alright & it isn’t over yet.  We still have to get this vehicle across the border next month.  Kelly is confident there will be no problem because everything we are doing is above board.  Despite that, because of the way things have gone, I see ourselves hanging from iron shackles on an old brick wall in a dark & dank border dungeon for the next 10 years.  


Having never purchased a vehicle in the United States before we have found the whole thing very confusing, tiring, & frustrating.  And the dealership we bought if from has not made things any easier for us.  Everything is done much differently here in the States.  What I can tell you right now though is about… coverage. This unsuspected Monster really blindsided us.


In Ontario Canada, one has 14 days to get a purchased vehicle from the States across the border into Canada.  Insurance companies will cover you for those 14 days & that’s it.  We did not know that & thought it was our insurance company who was jerking us around when we tried to switch our policy from the sold Damon to the newly purchased Sunseeker.  But, after many inquiries to other Ontario insurance companies we finally found out this is a Government regulation, not an individual Insurance company regulation.  After that 14 day travel limit has expired a vehicle is not eligible for insure in Ontario until it is properly registered in Ontario.


After buying the Sunseeker & getting it back to our digs in Congress we suddenly realized we did not have insurance coverage & the only way to get it insured was to go with an American insurance policy.  Well, we ran into some horror stories right off the bat.  State Farm wanted over a thousand dollars for 6 months.  What!!!!  We only needed coverage to get the RV from Congress to the border.  Luckily, through Kelly’s patience & the honesty & integrity of a State Farm insurance broker, she was able to track down another insurance agent in Yarnell representing the FOREMOST INSURANCE COMPANY out of Grand Rapids Michigan.  Phone calls were made, faxes were sent back & forth & a policy was issued.  Price was reasonable & we are now insured to get the rig back to Canada.  The Yarnell insurance lady said to then cancel the policy upon our return.  She said this is how it is normally done for Canadians who are over their 14 day limit in getting a vehicle back to Ontario.  Our American insurance coverage came into effect one day before we took off for Borrego Springs last week.  Before that, we were grounded:((


Once we are securely back in Canada next month I will consider posting ‘the rest of the story’ about this whole Sunseeker deal.  We are glad to have the unit but it has been a real ordeal for us, & extremely stressful to say the least.  And would we buy another vehicle in the States?  Judging from the way things have gone, my answer to that is a resounding ‘NO’!!  And we haven’t even got to the border yet.  I’m already having nightmares about old brick walls & iron shackles:((


Darlene in our Shout Box wondered what we use in our rig’s toilet system to keep it trouble free.  I think if you asked 10 people this question you might get 10 different answers.  Some folks use no chemicals but I think most people do.  We use ‘the blue chemical’ & to this I add a generous couple squirts of Dawn dish detergent & Calgon water softener if we can find it.  Those last two go a long way in keeping the walls of the black tank & sensors sludge free.  It’s the first chemical that keeps it odor free & breaks down bacteria.  I also add an extra bucket of water to the black tank so there is always lots of sloshing action going on in their.  It is important not to be stingy with the water when flushing.  This system has proved trouble free for us the past 5 years or so.  Here’s a LINK to lots of good info on the topic. 


Forgot to mention a couple other reasons why we head back to Ontario in early April.  As reader’s know, neither Kelly or I are hot or cold weather people.  By April it is already getting too hot for us in Congress with temps charging up over the 80 degree mark.  The other reason is Spring clean-up in Bayfield.  Depending on the severity of the winter storms our property can be littered with broken limbs, sticks & twigs.  Also on the ground are about 3 good full utility loads of pine needles that have to be raked up.  Flower beds need to be cleaned out so our Spring flowers can begin to bloom etc.  And of course our many birds will anxiously be waiting in the tree tops for me to get the bird feeders out.  And for sure the Squirrels will be awaiting that blessed day as well:((  Spring clean-up is an old habit stemming from many bad years of winter.  I always loved getting outside in that crisp Spring air each year.   It is something I enjoy every Spring & will be something I will enjoy in Congress each Fall.


And an infuriating development this morning.  Kelly stopped for gas on the way home from North Ranch & her credit card was declined.  A quick check of our on-line bank account showed our card has been compromised.  Last time we used the card was a couple days ago at Love’s Truck stop in Quartzsite Arizona.  The very same day 3 transactions on our card took place to the tune of $1,200.00.  We suspect it is even more than that.  Those 3 transactions all took place at a ‘Toys R Us’ store in Nashville, Tennessee.  We have been in touch with our bank in Canada & new cards are being issued.  Kelly called the truck stop to give them a head’s up but the manager guy did not seem concerned.  The pump we used there, which by the way did not ask for a zip code, was pump #20. 


IMG_3432  IMG_3431


GROANER’S CORNER:((  A guy walks into a bar, and buys a mug of beer. Then he sees someone he knows, and decides to go and say Hi ! to them, but he does not want to take his beer mug with him. So he keeps it on a table, along with a note "I spit in this beer" thinking that no one will drink it.  Upon return, he sees another note saying "Me too!"

- Tourists see the world, travelers experience it.
- Home is where your pet is:))
- "If having a soul means being able to feel
love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals
are better off than a lot of humans."
(James Herriot)
- The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails -William Arthur Ward
- The only thing better than right now will someday be the memories of right now...AL.
- It is not so much having nothing to do as it is not having the interest to do something....AL.


  1. I thought maybe you were going to leave Az plates on the MH and park it at Kelly's mom's house for the summer... You never drive it anywhere in Cn anyway.... Just a thought...

  2. Good luck with getting it back to Ontario and hope you get the credit card straighten out too.

  3. Our credit cards were hacked as well in Gold Canyon, AZ !!

    In fact over 100 of us in our 600 site park were affected.

    Seems the local grocery store had their computer attacked.

    A real pain when you are from Canada, and moving around.

    Hope you get it resolved quickly.

    Take care ... TnT

  4. So sorry about the card. And so sorry about all the problems you have had. John handles problems just like you so you are in good company.

  5. Thanks for the tips for the black tank, didn't know about Dawn or Calgon. We use the Blue Chemicals.
    We will be starting the full timing the first of April. Come on over to my site and see our new home. Would love to see you.

  6. forgot the address is

  7. You have more patience than I would and then the cc is like icing on the cake. Speaking of your change of forcasted weather this week, in Indiana we had a snow blizzard on Tuesday, today it was 60 ... go figure.

    I look forward to your trip back in a smaller RV. Any regrets selling your other one? I am a test drive away from buying my 1st RV.

  8. I find a squirt of dawn and a quick swish with a handled sponge a good way to clean up the potty every morning. Craig says our black tank water really foams when it passes thru the clear joint in the sewer hose!

    I try to watch our credit cards. We have been hacked a couple of times, but the bank has caught it for us.

    The worse was when someone stole my credit card out of my health club locker. Someone who I have been naked with! A real insult to trust.

  9. Al, we drove through Anza-Borrego park today! It was windy, with some clouds, so it was very pretty. Wish we could have spent more time there, but hubby was in a hurry to get to Julian to buy an apple pie! Yum, yum!
    ~~Cheryl Ann~~

  10. I am SO SORRY about your troubles. Geesh, the insurance, and whatever else you're going to tell us later---that was enough! Then the credit card mess. Somebody must be getting the card info from the gas pump. I've filled my tank a few times without being asked for any numbers to prove who I am. Scary business. Hopefully the Sunseeker will be so wonderful that you'll consider it worth the trouble. Those who have suggested that you leave it somewhere else are forgetting Kelly's plan to use it to visit kids & grandkids!

  11. Sorry to hear about all the troubles! Hope your trip back O Canada goes smoothly.

  12. Sounds like you've had a few bumps in the road lately. Sorry to hear that. I can't even imagine what the rest of the story is about the purchase of the Sun Seeker. Could it get worse??

  13. A couple of years ago someone used our checking account number to make a purchase at a Walmart and Target in another state. We got our money back but I never did get an answer to how this happened. It sounds like an inside job to me. I can't make a charge over $100 at Walmart without them wanting to see my drivers license. How does someone get away with charging $1200 at a Toys R Us. The local Crime Stopper is always showing pictures of people making large purchases with stolen credit cards. What I want to know is who is approving these purchases.

  14. Hang in there AL. Your lucky you have Kelly and I'm lucky I have Ms. Pat, What would we do without them?
    I didn't see Kelly yesterday, but it was so nasty I didn't put anything out for the garage sale. I did run around to a few of the neighbors places,,,in fact I bought a gun>>>>>:-) The weather was really lousey, it even spit some light rain and it was chilly...
    Soon we will be complaining about the HEAT...I can't wait!!! Cheers

  15. ARGGGHHH on the credit card theft... geesh!

    You might want to mention it's the
    "liquid" Calgon from the laundry aisle, not the "powdered" Calgon from the bath products aisle.

    We use it too!

    Karen and Steve
    The USA Is Our Big Backyard

  16. I've imported several vehicles into Canada. The process is quite straight forward. Insurance seems to be problematic in Ontario (based on your blog info)but it is seamless in British Columbia.

    The Insurance Corporation of British Columbia (ICBC) issues a 31 day binder for the vehicle to be driven into Canada. With 72 hours advanced notice to US Customs (at the US exit Customs to Canada) once you arrive at the border, you take the original vehicle title and have it stamped by US Customs before proceeding into Canada.

    The WEB site will answer all of your questions and provide your the forms you need.

    I do know that the State of Arizona issues a "License Transit Permit" @ $40 for 90 days. That is the temporary license you need for your RV - with insurance provided by a Canadian provider.

    With one importation to happen this spring, I've imported 7 vehicles into Canada without any problems whatsoever.

    Good luck.

  17. Hang in there, friend...Sometimes it seems like life is testing us, eh?...At least you and Kelly are both healthy and here to tell the stories...I, too, am wondering if you regret the downsize to the Sunseeker..You sure did step down a couple sizes...We may think about doing the same eventually...Remember that old song, "Let a smile be your umbrella"..good advice.

  18. I also had my credit card compromised earlier in the year. What a bummer! At least the credit card caught it and denied the charges.

    Peter and Bea also bought a rig in the US but they are going to store it in Maine on their way home to avoid taxes. Just wondered if you have to pay any extra taxes on your rig.

  19. our card was compromised in Oct..I had ordered from some quilting fabric..and supplies...I check daily online our bank accounts and credit caught it very fast..called my bank a new replacement card...I just got an email a week ago from informing me that they had just learned of a data security incident that may have resulted in the disclosure of the credit card information, names, and billing address associated with your online purchase. Good thing I keep a close eye on it on this end..they were almost 5 mos realizing they had a problem..ughh
    Good luck and all the best getting across the border...