Day 1 - Oakdale, WI
|Monday, May 3, 2021: Time to get back out on the road! For a change, we left from our house instead of our storage facility, so we got a hearty breakfast from McDonald's on our way out.
|Even though we've driven the road up to Chicago a million times, Debbie always takes a photo of the Subaru plant's display of cars in honor of her Subie-loving nephew.
|We were only an hour into our trip when our Ram Promaster-based Class B RV gave us a low tire pressure alert. We discovered a large screw in the front left tire, so Tom put some air and Fix-a-Flat in the tire, then we unsucessfully called a few tire places in Lafayette as we backtracked through Purdue country to ...
|... Chauncey Hill in West Lafayette, ...
|... where Tom called more tire places ...
|... and used our air compressor to put more air in the tire. We were relieved to locate a place in Lafayette that had the tires we needed in stock.
|On our way, we passed a giant banana sculpture marking the headquarters of ...
|... Granite Management, a real estate management company that owns numerous rental properties around the Purdue University campus.
|By the time we got to Tire Barn, the ailing tire was down to 29 psi. After conferring with a tech there, we decided to replace all four tires instead of the front two, because we learned that the tires we had bought two months earlier when getting a vehicle lift in Salt Lake City were not the right size for our rig, something we weren't aware of.
|While we waited for the tires to be installed, we headed to El Meson across the street for lunch, ...
|... then headed to the auto parts store next to Tire Barn to buy a replacement can of Fix-a-Flat. We later learned that you're supposed to remove the offending item that caused the flat, which is probably why it didn't do any good at all. Next time, we'll be ready.
|Two hours after our ordeal started, we had four shiny new tires and were on our way.
|Look at those beautiful psi readings.
|An hour later, we were in Chicago.
|We enjoyed this highway art, especailly the Chicago skyline with the Bean.
|Even on a cloudy day, the Chicago skyline is impressive.
|Look at this gorgeous building.
|We were pleasantly surprised when the skies cleared up a bit to give us a nice view of Chicago a little further up the road.
|The Allstate Arena seems to have appeared out of nowhere overnight.
|It was after 3:00 PM when we rolled into Wisconsin. Wisconsin Welcomes You! This was The Ocho's 21st state.
|It's always fun to see the giant can of Hormel Chili, even if it does have Beans painted on it.
|The weather forecast had called for rain all day, but we hadn't gotten any until 3:30. We pulled over near Madison to wait out the worst of it. As we got back on the road again, we discovered that the leak we had found on our previous trip had not been fixed by the warranty service performed on our rig in the meantime. Debbie put out towels to catch the drips, and taped some paper cups under the leakiest areas.
|It was a relief when the skies cleared up a little.
|Wisconsin is such a pretty state.
|Castle Rock near Camp Douglas never goes unphotographed.
|In all of our years of driving this route, we had never noticed either the Oakdale exit or the KOA facing the road.
|We had also never seen this guy up close before. He stands guard at the top of the Oakdale exit.
|Our destination for the evening was Oakdale KOA Journey.
|There was a small farm menagerie near the entrance, consisting of chickens and goats.
|After getting our campsite information from the after-hours box, we stopped to get a picture of the cow statue that was near the office. We suspected that this one matched the ones we had seen in southern Wisconsin a couple of years earlier.
|We travel with marine adhesive, so Tom got out the unopened tube of clear adhesive and spent some quality time sealing all of the lights along the poptop.
|A couple of them had water inside, ...
|... so he felt pretty confident that he had found at least one of the sources of the leak.
|Dinner was peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, made with the fresh Italian loaf Tom had baked the night before. It was the second loaf he baked, since the first one burned when our adorable little neighbor boys stopped by and we invited them to look around the RV. We were having such a good time with them and their parents that we forgot all about the timer going off in the kitchen. This second load turned out perfectly, so it was worth the effort.
|After dinner, the KOA manager was out walking the goats.
|Bella didn't want to walk with the others and instead, wandered up the road to check us out.
|We checked the weather radar and learned that we had one more hour or two of rain headed our way, ...
|... and it showed up right on schedule. We had the poptop up because of the adhesive Tom had applied, so this was the first time it had been exposed to wet weather. Fortunately, we had waterproofed the canvas a few weeks earlier so we didn't need to be concerned.
Copyright © Deborah Schilling/Thomas Bundy