You just never know what you might see along the bike path here in west Orange County. Here was Tuesday's sighting: a beautiful male Peacock! He was so tame, he walked closer and closer to me as I was snapping photos, so my later shots were much better than the earlier ones. He wasn't interested in me; just in finding bugs in the leaf litter.
What a gorgeous bird!
Monday this week was also one for the books. We took Pearl in for her first official service appointment. We'd had a leaky tire valve fixed at a tire shop since we've been in Florida, and Barry has done quite a bit of work on her systems himself, but it was time for the Ford F53 chassis experts to work their magic. Although we bought Pearl here at Independence RV, they don't work on chassis issues.
Independence sent us to Rush Truck Center, farther east in Orlando. We had to take her in twice. The first time was just to check her over as we were having an issue with the engine "missing" and steering column vibration at higher speeds (60 mph+) when accelerating up hills. Barry went out on a test drive with the tech but couldn't get the speed up high enough due to the speed limits (and there are no hills!) to reproduce the problem. They did read a code from the computer that could indicate a fault in the fuel sending unit, however.
Our second trip to Rush was to get the work done. We had the first appointment of the day at 7 am, so had to wake up at the ungodly hour (for us!) of 5:30 am, unhook and leave the campground by 6:30 am, still before dawn. That was not particularly fun as we are not early birds, but we'd done most of the preparation work the day before, leaving us minimal work in the morning. We saved time by not even making coffee before going as we knew they'd have it at the service place.
This would be the first time Barry had ever driven Pearl in the dark, a bit disconcerting. Fortunately, by the time we arrived at 7am, it was light!
Since Pearl is our home, we had to bring Paisley in with us to wait. Fortunately, Rush has a nice lounge, so we were able to use our laptops, read, get coffee. use the rest room, and take Paisley outside whenever we needed to.
We traded off going for meals so the other could keep an eye on Paisley. Barry hoofed it to McDonald's to bring back our breakfast, and I did the same to Subway for our lunch. Each place was about a mile away.
Pearl was right outside, so we could keep an eye on the progress of the work.
As the day warmed up, the air-conditioning in the lounge became too much for us, but we were able to move to a nice table in the shade outdoors. Pearl was just behind the fence on the right, so Barry could talk to the tech.
We got a tune-up with new spark plugs and a new fuel filter installed. They'd planned to replace the fuel sender unit as well, but it sits on the top of the gas tank. When the tech. started looking at dropping the tank, he discovered that our rear level-legs would have to come off, and they would have to cut a hole in the bracket behind them to access the tank bolts. Not a great design! This would also mean an overnight stay in a hotel for the three of us as he would not be able to complete the work that day.
After some discussion, we all agreed that this work could wait. We wanted to see if the other fixes may have cleared up the problem we were noticing without the additional work and significant expense of dropping the tank. That is something we think can wait until later if the problem doesn't go away. Barry has the Ford F53 shop manual, and it suggests spark plugs as one of the primary possibilities for the symptom we were having, so we want to take things one step at a time. We don't mind spending the money if it is absolutely necessary, but we want to be sure it is before we do,
Driving back to the campground, Barry said that Pearl seemed to run and even idle more smoothly, so we are cautiously optimistic. Until we travel to a place with hills, we won't know for sure that the problem is resolved. In any event, It is nice to have this behind us, at least for the moment. We -- and Pearl -- survived our first service appointment. And it surely was a pleasure to sleep in until 7 am the next morning!
Emily & Barry
We're a long-married, early-retired couple who are currently traveling as nomads with no fixed home base. After years of living in North Carolina (Emily's home state), we spent 18 months living oceanfront on Ambergris Caye, Belize, a year road-tripping the US in a Honda CR-V, a year in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, and are now roaming North America in our 32' motorhome, Pearl, following warm weather whenever possible.
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