Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Day 4 - We're Home!

I got underway from Travis AFB at 0845 and the trip was completely uneventful. No crazy traffic, thank goodness!

We had a great time and the boys as well.

Our next trip won't be until end of July. My next college semester is from 2 June through 26 July. I'm taking HR Management and Marketing...both pretty intense classes.

For all those on the road: Be safe...arrive alive!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Day 3 - Travis AFB FAMCAMP

Today was a good day. All the boys woke up arouond 0800 and Maria and I started making breakfast burrittos for the kids. We used 2 dozen eggs and 2 lbs of sausage. They ate it all. But good thing is they were FULL!

Well today Maria needed to leave around 1700 because Joey has an NJROTC event on Memorial Day in Fresno. He is the Drill Team Commander and needed to be there for the event at 0800, Monday.

The boys went to the skate park and "hung out" for a while then they wanted to go to the Exchange (Military "Mall") so Shane (my brother) and I took them for a while. Well actually Shane and I stayed in the Food Court and pulled out our laptops since they have free WiFi. Boy is that high-speed WiFi.

I caught up on blogs. Also went on line and checked out the website listing for the house Shane has put an offer on. Great looking house! Here's to hoping the deal goes through for him.

The time came for Maria and the boys to leave. We said our see-ya's and off they went.

After they left I took my time in rearranging the basements of the MH and putting everything away. My gosh we carry a bunch of stuff for the boys. We have 2 tents, and all the camp gear for those, 3 boogie boards for those beach trips, sports gear and numerous sleepoing bags, air mattresses, pillows....etc.! Way too much stuff! But that's what Maria wants, and we all know.....Yep, I'm not about to say much about that. I know the guys out there understand.

Tomorrow is the last leg of the trip. My Mom, Buck (our dog) will get underway back to Lemoore NAS.

Update: 27 Jul 08
This is a picture of Travis AFB Main Gate. I am posting this by request of an RV-Dreams family member, Dee. Unfortunately, all my other photos became e-waste somewhere...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Day 2 - Travis AFB FAMCAMP

I woke up this morning at 0400 and it was raining!! I thought...here we go, Joey and Tom and their friends aren't going to have any fun and Maria and I will have to listen to SIX teenage boys whine, moan and groan.

The boys awoke around 0800 and we didn't hear one thing! Go figure....9 hours later and I still can't believe I haven't heard one thing!

Well around 1000 it stopped raining and Joey, Nick (his best friend) and Jarrod (another friend) all left and went to the Extreme Paintball Park on base. That's the whole reason we come here. The park is about 6 square blocks of condemned military housing (one-story) and they have made a paintball park around the housing. A great idea and it makes the Travis AFB MWR a fortune! The best part....it's on base and no rif raf will be lingering around.

Then Tom, Mike (friend) and Dusty (our nephew) went to the base skate park. It's a very big skate park and again....NO rif raf. They just called me and want a ride back to the FAMCAMP...I told them...get some exercise and skateboard or walk. "Oh come on Dad.....NOPE---I'm bloggin'!!" (Dad needs some relaxing too.)!

Tonight they are going to the movies ($1.00 on base). Then back to their tent and hang out. They'll be tired by the time they get back so they'll probably get to bed soon after that. The movie starts at 2000 so it's over around 2130.

That's the whole reason we come to Travis. A very safe place, the boys have their military ID's so they can sign their friends into the Exchange, movies, gym....and have a good time. We don't even leave the base. Everything is here and of course my favorite NO RIF RAF!!

Dee: Haven't forgotten about the picture of the main gate. I'll get it today or tomorrow. Along with other pics of Travis.

All those on the road....Be safe!

Friday, May 23, 2008

2nd Leg --- We've Arrived!

Got an early start this morning and was out the door at 0630. I had my Mom, and our dog Buck along with items Maria wanted me to take. So we left and headed to the base to get in the motorhome and get started on the four-hour journey to Travis Air Force Base.

We arrived at the RV, put all the "stuff" away and I unhooked the RV from the hook-ups and completed my "underway" checks. All set....left the base at 0745.

The ride was uneventful just chatting with my Mom and driving. Traffic??? What's that? Didn't exist on this trip. Kinda cool because I was expecting more, but maybe I'll run into some on the way home.

We arrived Travis at 1245...exactly 4 hours after leaving NAS Lemoore. The usual camphosts Tony and Mary are gone for a week but were very kind in holding our "usual" site along with a tent site for the boys. That was pretty nice of them! Thanks Mary! I hadn't met Grant before but he's a cool guy and got us checked-in quickly.

I got us all hooked up and my Mom helped me put up the tents for the boys. One person cannot put up those tents, it requires 2. So I got the poles ready and she stepped inside and held the poles up while I bent them in place. Took us only about 5 minutes a tent. Thanks Mother!

So everything was ready for Maria, the boys and their friends. We talked when she was about 15 minutes away and fired up the grill and started BBQing burgers and dogs. That went over well with all the boys.

We have SIX teenage boys staying in 2 tents. So far they've been real good.

As you can see there is WiFi at the base exchange so I'll do my journal entries everyday.

I should post some pictures later today or tomorrow.

Be safe!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

First leg of our journey to Travis!

Today marked our first leg of our journey---I took the motorhome out of storage! Yeah! Well the first thing I noticed was that the MH was in need of a good washing. But first I needed to get the fluids checked and tires aired up.
Well much easier said than done. I had been meaning to get valve extenders put on, especially for the duallies, just hadn't had the time. So that's what I started with. I went to Western RV in Lemoore off CA-198 and had them installed. That process took about 1 hour. I passed the time by calling Maria and giving her the saga of the valve extenders issue...she was busy with her daycare kids so I said my "love you's" and hung up. Then started to read past issues of Trailer Life in their lobby. That passed the time well.
So after I got that done I went back to the base and gave it a good washing. That took a while, but it's done now. Only problem now is the wind is blowing around 15mph and blowing dust pretty wildly. So I'm sure it will need to be washed again soon.
Well as I write this I am home getting stuff ready to leave tomorrow and the MH is sitting in a site at the base RV park. I'm going back in a few hours after I load everything up.
Next time I write, we'll be at Travis.
For all those on the road...be safe and ARRIVE ALIVE!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The good -- and the bad!

Well I don't which news to start off with...we'll go with the good: I got an "A" in my International Business Class! OK, now the bad: I did not get selected for promotion to Senior Chief. That was my SIXTH time up for promotion. The promotion was 3% this year. The advancement rate goes from 2-4 percent, haven't seen it over 4% in about 8 years. We have a saying in the Navy: "Choose your Rate--Choose your Fate!"
As with all corporations, although the Administrative Department is the backbone of any organization, we are just not truly appreciated for the service we give. Yes, I know many people say "thank you....I really appreciate it", but many people look down on Administrative Professionals. OK---I'm off my soap box, you won't here it from me again.

I just wanted to put this into cyber space....I feel better now.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Welcome Home Shane!

My brother just returned from his tour of duty in Iraq. He is a Gunnery Sergeant in the USMC and that was his 2nd tour in Iraq since this war started.

Both times he has brought home every Marine he left with! Thank God for his leadership, every Marine is a better Marine for serving with Shane.

I don't have any pics of him, but he's going with us next weekend to Travis and I'll get some then.

Speaking of that---we're going to Travis for the Memorial Weekend Holiday. My Mother is going with us and staying in our MH with Maria and I, the boys are each bringing a friend (or two) and they will be staying in tents about 30 feet from our MH site in the FAMCAMP.

Travis has a great FAMCAMP and it is just across the street from the back of the PX and Teen Center. The reason we go there is because they have a HUGE paintball park, called Extreme Paintball. It is condemned military housing (about 10 square blocks) and they have an EXTREME time with the paintball. They are not allowed to go into the housing, but go around it, hide in some dug in cement cylinders...you get the drift. I'll take some pictures and post those when we return. I think they have WI-FI, if they do I'll upload while I'm there.

For our RV-dreams friend, Dee; don't worry, I'll take a picture of the front gate and upload that as well.

So tomorrow is my International Business class final, and I'll have lots of free time after work next week to prepare the MH for our underway time of 0700 on Friday, 23 May. Maria won't be with me to do her normal "getting underway" checklist, but my Mom is going with me so she'll have to get her PQS (Navy talk) signed off very quickly.

Maria is coming later on Friday with the boys and their friends when they get out of school. So I'll get up there about noon and she'll get there about 1900. I'll have dinner ready when they arrive and also have the tents/sleeping bags ready to go so we can just relax and enjoy the evening.

We're taking our German Sheperd, Buck for protection. He'll likely be more of a pain, but he'll have a good time in the open ball parks and many trails that Travis has on base.