Eastern Gypsy Rally – Day 2

Today started out great, but ended in a drag.

Jan and I headed over to the Meeting Hall a little before 9 am, where Jan had a class on Bicycling for RV’ers while I started checking out the vendor area. Then at 10:30 am Jan had a class on RV cleaning products.

At 11:30 Jan and I headed out for lunch at Subway on our way down to RV Surplus to pick up some flyers to give out at the rally.

Then at 1, while Jan attended a For Women Only group while I drove over to Phoenix Commercial Paint where Michele Henry had another one of my cargo bay doors ready.

Three down, Four to go!

At 2:30 Jan had a massage given by a lady here at the rally. After the massage she was so washed out that I took her back to the rig for a nap. Apparently feeling like this after a good massage is normal.

About 5 Jan and I headed out for a great dinner of fried chicken at Ryan’s, and then it was back to the rally for the evening’s festivities in the tent. And a big crowd was already there.

Crowded Tent

The evening started off with Dennis Hill warming up the crowd with his dance routines.Dennis Hill

Next, Nick introduced the McKinney Washboard Two who will be performing at tomorrow night’s show.

Washboard Two

After the evening’s door prize giveaway’s we come to the “drag” part. And that was, of course, the First Annual Hoosier Honey’s “Beauty” Pageant.

Note the quotes around “Beauty”.

Here’s the first two contestants. The Terrible Two

Note the lipstick on top of Nick’s head. He’s enjoying this a little too much.

Carlotta Camelback

Nick and

And here’s a crowd favorite, Haley Halitosis.

Haley Halitosis

And here’s the whole group. I think they’re comparing armpit hair!

The Lineup


And the winner of the First Annual Hoosier Honey contest is…

Haley Halitosis!

And the Winner Is

That’s about it for today.

More tomorrow…

Quote of the Day:
“It is easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.”  –Josiah Charles Stamp



Eastern Gypsy Rally – Day 1

Today was the first day of Nick and Terry Russell’s 2010 Eastern Gypsy Gathering, and things got off to a great start, with even more rigs coming in this morning.

And this was one of them. Apparently the owner has a lift system that he uses to raise and lower the car. I guess it beats towing it.


The rally started off at 3pm with Nick and Terry talking about what was upcoming during the next 4 days. Next, the many vendors lined up and introduced themselves. I’m really glad to see so many vendors here since I think this is my favorite part of the rally.

Then about 4:30 there was a 60 minute Q & A panel with a team of experts onstage to answer your RV questions.

Nick And Terry Rally

There was a great turnout and the tent turned out to be very comfortable with a nice breeze most of the time. 
Rally Crowd

One of the many vendors here is Michele Henry of Phoenix Commercial Paint , who is re-painting my cargo bay doors. And here’s an example of some of her work. She just finished a full-body paint job on this coach about two weeks ago. And she’s a beauty.

Phoenix Paint Job

At 5:30 we took a 90 minute break for dinner, and then it was back in the tent at 7 pm for the first night of the door prize giveaways. Tonight’s prizes were mostly restaurants, to allow winners to use their gifts before they leave town.

After that Nick & Terry, Stu & Donna McNichol, and Jan & I headed over to Mancino’s Pizza for a late dinner. Nick and Terry are normally too busy taking care of rally problems to be able to eat during the 5:30 – 7 break time.

More rally news tomorrow…

Quote of the Day:
"Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. Three times is enemy action."


Jan is home, YEAH !!!!!

I left Elkhart about 12:30 pm to pick Jan up at Chicago Midway from her 3 pm flight. By 3:30 we had her bag and were on our way home. A smooth trip both ways.

And it sure is great to have my sweetie back home.

Arriving at the RV park about 5:45 pm Jan was greeted by big hugs from Nick and Terry.

About 15 minutes later we headed out for dinner with Nick and Terry, Mike and Elaine Loscher, and Jan and I, at Mancino’s Pizza.


Mancino’s is not open on Sunday. Bummer!

So it was back over to Bob Evans right near the park. And we had a great time, great food, great conversation, and our always great waiter, Michael, who caterers to our every need, and still keeps a smile on his face.

Jan brought back a bunch of Landon photos so here goes.

Here’s new mom Brandi about 30 minutes after Landon was born.

Brandi and Landon

Here’s Piper holding Landon with the proud parents looking on.

Brandi Lowell Landon & Piper

And here, too. I think this is another day.
Piper And Landon 5 

And, of course, here’s Grandmother Jan with Landon. 

Jan And Landon 2

And here’s Grandmother Sonja with her new grandson. Sonja and Landon

And another one of Miss Piper.
  Piper and Landon 2 

Jan took a lot of photos that I’m still going through, so more later.

And now for something completely different.

When we got back from Chicago this afternoon, I noticed a new rig parked back behind Nick’s rig and ours.

And I couldn’t help notice the pair of really BIG girl panties hanging from the wipers.

BIG Girl Panties

After some debate, a bunch of us just had to find out what the story was behind the panties. And a big behind it would be, too.

But, amazingly, the gentleman in the rig had a perfectly rational explanation.

He said that like Prince Charming was looking for someone to fit the glass slipper, he was looking for someone to fill these panties.


That makes sense, but I’m not sure Nick and I TOGETHER could fill those.

But good luck with that.  And let us know how it goes.

Quote of the Day:
Evil can only succeed if good men don’t point at it and laugh.


Piper and Landon

Did the final checkout on Nick’s tail lights and everything’s working now. It’s about time. At least I’m sure that’s what Nick is saying.

Around 2 pm I headed to do the final final pass trying to squeeze out a few more door prizes out of local restaurants, with a little luck, but not much.

I’ve got one more pizza place to stop by tomorrow on my way to Chicago to pick up Jan at Midway International. Hopefully they’ll come thru.

Jan should be in at 2 pm tomorrow afternoon. Hopefully it will be more on time than when Jan left here last Thursday. The flight was 75 minutes late leaving Chicago, so I’m going to take plenty of reading materials just in case.

About 5 pm Nick and Terry, Mac McCoy, the Fire Guy, and his lady friend Cheryl, Mike and Elaine Loscher, and I went over to El Maguey, our favorite local Mexican restaurant, and as usual, spent more time talking than eating. Although you wouldn’t know it by looking at Nick and I.

I talked to Jan about 8:45 tonight. She was packing, getting ready to fly out tomorrow. These 10 days are the longest we’ve been apart since the early 80’s when I was working Shuttle Missions out at White Sands. I’m not good at doing the bachelor thing anymore.

Here’s the latest Landon photo, shown here being held by his aunt, our 16 year-old (soon to be 17, she will tell you) granddaughter Piper.

Two real sweeties.

Piper and Landon 

The park is really filling up with the Rally starting Monday. It’ seems like most people are already here.

Here’s the park today.

Elkhart Rally 3a

And here it is a few weeks ago.Elkhart 4

Today…Elkhart Rally 1a

And a few weeks ago.Elkhart 2

Big difference!

More tomorrow…

Quote of the Day:
An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.


More Landon

Finally found the last problem with Nick’s tail light system. The person who originally installed this screwed-up system should be dragged behind someone’s RV

Around 12:30 I headed back out to collect more gift cards. I don’t know what’s different about Elkhart, but I’m certainly having more trouble here getting donations than I did last March in Yuma at the Western Gypsy Gathering.

Then a little before 5 pm  Nick & Terry, Stu & Donna, Mike & Elaine, and I drove over to North Garden Chinese Buffet for a good meal and a lot of great conversation. About 5:30 Jan called from Houston to let me know how things are going down there. She said it will be hard to leave Landon, but she’s anxious to get back home.

Speaking of Landon, Lowell sent this photo of the three of them taken right before they left the hospital the other day.


And then later, Brandi sent this one.  Looks like he thinks everyone is being too loud and won’t let him sleep. Landon Morrison

Tomorrow I’ll take one last pass at getting gift cards, and that will wrap it up. Then Sunday I’ll pick up Jan in Chicago coming back from Houston. I can hardly wait.

More tomorrow…

Quote of the Day:
A government which robs from Peter to pay Paul will always have the support of Paul. – George Bernard Shaw


…drove my Chevy to the levee..

Today I got an early start about 10am (well, that’s early for me) wanting to finish up on Nick’s tail light repair.

And I did, almost

Since I had completely removed the old harness, it took a while to get the new one routed and ZipTied into place, but finally the job was done.

But since Miss Terry was away in the van, I was unable to do a final check out. That’s where the “almost” comes in.

While I was out working, this photo came in from Brandi, of Landon sleeping, still wearing his bilirubin light vest.  I can hardly wait to see him in a couple of weeks.

Landon Sleeping 

Then a little after 2 pm I headed back out to beg for more gift certificates from local restaurants for rally door prizes. I picked up several, with a bunch more to be picked up tomorrow or Saturday.

We’ll see.

While I was at Cracker Barrel I took this photo of what Nick says is a 1955 Chevy Bel Air. (I thought it was a 58. What do I know?)  It’s a really nice-looking car. A little Googling told me that new, this car cost a little under $2,000, and today, depending on condition, now goes for $40,000 – $60,000. WOW! 1955 BelAir

When I got back, Nick said he and Terry had hooked up the van and checked out the lights, and still found a problem. The description of the problem didn’t make sense, but we decided to check it out again after supper.

About 5 pm Nick, Terry, and I drove over to Ryan’s for some of their great fried chicken. Just as we were leaving, Jan called from Houston, and said that Landon went back to the pediatrician today and found that his bilirubin count is now down to 9, so Landon won’t have to wear the light vest anymore.

After we got back, we checked out the lights again, and it became obvious the problem was with the extension cord that runs between the rig and the van. When I replaced the corroded plug, two of the four wires were already loose, so I had to make a “best-guess” on how it was wired up. But apparently my “best-guess” wasn’t quite good enough, but it should be pretty simple to figure out what’s wrong tomorrow.

Till then…

Quote of the Day:
“But many of Mr. DeLay’s actions remain legal only because lawmakers have chosen not to criminalize them.” – New York Times       Huh?


I see tents, so where’s the circus?

Today started out with me back hard at work fixing Nick’s tail light system. He’s such a slave driver. He just never lets up.

First thing we went back over to pick up a new tail light converter from the trailer supply place. The new one looked like a direct replacement for the old one, so it should work OK.

After stopping off to put some air in my truck tires, I started pulling all of the old wiring harness out and replacing it with the new stuff.

After looking over the new converter I saw it would be quicker to also replace the bumper plug and connector too, so it was back to the trailer supply store for a 2nd time.

Coming back to the park, I drove past the 50’ x 70’ tent that Nick had installed to give us more room for the evening get-togethers at the rally. This really should be nice.

Rally Tent

After getting everything hooked up & checked out, we decided to wait til tomorrow to tie it all up.

So about 5:30, Nick, Terry, and I headed over to a nearby Bob Evans restaurant for a dinner of…breakfast.

About 6:15, while we were still there, Michele Henry from Phoenix Commercial Paint called and said she had another cargo bay door ready and would bring it back later.

About 7:30, while I was waiting for Michele, Jan called from Houston and brought me up to date on all the goings-on down there. I sure will be glad when she gets back on Sunday.

About 8:15 Michele showed up and we got the new door installed. And it looks great. 2 doors down, 5 to go.

After Michele left, I spent some time at Nick and Terry’s helping Terry with a computer problem, And while I was there, Al Hasselbart showed up and he, and Nick and I spent some time talking over old cars we had owned.

Then, a little before 10pm, my long day was starting to take its toll so I headed back to my rig.

More tomorrow…

Quote of the Day:
"When the government fears the people, there is liberty.  When the people fear the government, there is tyranny.." Thomas Jefferson