Davenport IA

Looking at our trip plan, it became obvious that if we spent another night courtesy parking, we’d have a 400-mile drive on Wednesday — and we’ve had enough of long drives already.  We decided to hit the road on Tuesday afternoon to break up the trip.  This meant that we would have to forgo some of Paul and Marcia’s fine hospitality today, but we made the most of it.   Eleanor made a nice lunch for everyone, which we ate out on the patio before our final disc golf tournament (#4 in a series).  Emma continues to improve; I keep getting worse.

We needed this break.  There’s been too much driving lately.  As I’ve said many times, it’s not about the towing, it’s about the stopping.  This little visit in the country proved the value of stopping off in places where seemingly “there’s nothing to do.”  The people you meet along the way can make any place seem special.

My mother commented recently that if she knew all the people we did, she’d want to go courtesy parking all over the country too.  Mom, when you have one of these silver trailers, it works the other way around:  you meet the people because you’ve got the Airstream!  I can’t count all the great friends we’ve made over the years just by virtue of being part of this community.

After lunch it was time to pack up.  I retrieved all my technology toys, we dumped out the gray water, refilled the fresh water tank, patted the dog goodbye, thanked our hosts, and headed off.  But before we went, Paul and I did the pre-departure walk-around.  He’s an experienced Airstreamer, but we all know there’s always something useful to pick up from fellow travelers. I think it might be fun to shoot a quick video on this topic later.

We towed only about 150 miles to Davenport IA, right on the border of Illinois at the Mississippi River. This afternoon’s jaunt is more our style: less than three hours of car time.  Unfortunately Davenport was under a big line of thunderstorms this afternoon and they lingered until we arrived at 6 p.m.  I guess the good part of it was that all the pollen and some of the dead bugs got washed off, but the bad part was that the rain revealed a leak in our Airstream at the skylight.

A leak is serious because over a relatively short time it can cause major damage to the floor structure, not to mention mold and other nasty stuff. Normally this would be an easy fix when we get to Airstream (because I have a pretty good idea of the leak’s location).  But next week when we are at the factory, the Service Center will be booked solid.  And ironically, it’s MY fault, because I am co-hosting Alumapalooza, and that’s what has caused the Service Center to be booked.

So I’m going to have to beg the powers-that-be at the Service Center to squeeze me in next week, or wait until Monday, June 7.  I mention this in case you think I have some major “pull” at Airstream. I don’t. I’m just another customer, so I’ll be lucky if the leak gets fixed during Alumapalooza.  That’s another reason to hope there’s no rain next week!

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Editor & Publisher of Airstream Life magazine