Monday, September 29, 2008

Chattanooga Bound

We said our good-byes this morning at Camp Red Bay, boarded the bus and we were off. We are heading towards Chattanooga, TN where we are meeting up with Jim and Ellie, where we will be spending the week. We will be at the Holiday Trav L RV Park. We are looking forward to setting up and settling in and enjoying the motor homes, the campground and the sites. As we traveled down the road today, and actually for the first real trip since we picked up the motor home, here are a few of the things we saw along the way...and by the way, the trip was great!

The Space Center at Huntsville, Alabama

Any one want to sign up for the next trip?

Yes, we are going in the right direction

What a view

This bridge was off in the distance, not sure where it goes

Almost there

The Tennessee River

Yikes, it's later than I thought!

This was the second attempt to get fuel today. The first place we stopped had no diesel. We paid $4.11/gal at this truck stop.

That is one tall bridge!

Well, here we are at the RV Park, and look who we found...Jim and Ellie! We are almost set up, but we have decided it is time for late late lunch or early dinner so we are going to head out to find some good ole Mexican food.

Well, we found the food and it was Yum, so now we have to finish getting those pink and blue jobs done so we can enjoy the week. So stay tuned for the adventures in Chattanooga, including the Choo Choo!

This is the view from our motor home, that is until someone sets up in front of us

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Our Last Weekend in Red Bay

Our last weekend in Red Bay was spent out and away from the RV park. We enjoyed some last minute site seeing yesterday. We drove to Bay Springs Lake in Dennis, Mississippi to find the Piney Grove Campground. It is a Corp of Engineers Park. From the time we first saw the sign directing us to the campground it was about 10 miles. And, that was after we had already driven a long way from Red Bay. If you plan a trip to Piney Grove just be sure to take every last crumb of food you think you might want to eat because there is no grocery store anywhere within a half day drive. However, once we found it, we were pleasantly surprised. My friend Speedy would love this place. Just be sure you have a good book.

Mark is getting us a pass to go through the park

One of 139 camp sites, most were good and level with 50amp service

A view of the Bay Springs Lake

Fall is in the air
Today is Sunday and we slept in for a little while, but we were up and ready to go to church by 10:00. We attended services at First Baptist in Red Bay. It was a good service and everyone was very friendly. We saw "Red" the man that gives the tours at the Tiffin Factory and the young lady who was our waitress at Swamp Johns. After all, when you have been here as long as we have, you begin to recognize at lot of folks.
After Church we came back to the motor home and changed clothes. We wanted to take one last stab at finding Eastman, Mississippi. This settlement no longer exists and no one here young or old seemed to know anything about it. This is the location where Mark's grandparents lived in the early 1920's. And the house where his dad was born. We knew it had to be in the area where we found the Pate Temple Cemetery. Mark located it on Google Earth and it was right where we had been, so curiosity got the best of us and off we went.
This is what we found.

There it was. About 30 or 40 yards off the main road was the house. We did not see it until we turned up the old gravel logging road. This is a view from what was the back side of the house.

This is all that remains...but how exciting to have found this much. We also found a couple of pieces of an old dish. We do know that the property still belongs to brothers and sisters of his grandmother.

Back at the Campground we spent the afternoon with Glynn and Sylvia. They had invited us to their motor home for dinner. I made a fresh blackberry cobbler and took some Blue Bell ice cream. Sylvia made salad, veggies, and potatoes and Glynn grilled steaks. Great fun guys. Thanks for dinner and a good visit.

Well, so much for a good time in Red Bay and the surrounding countryside. Tomorrow we are heading out for Chattanooga, TN to meet up with Jim and Ellie. We are looking forward to a fund couple of weeks with them. So stay tuned for those adventures. And in the meantime, I will be waiting for my Alabama alarm clock to go off!

This guy lives right outside our RV site here at Camp Red Bay and he is never late with the notice that it is time to rise and shine. Not sure how we will manage to wake up without him!

See you in Chattanooga...

Friday, September 26, 2008

A Day Away from Red Bay

There is no sleeping in around Camp Red Bay, as everyone is trying to get to their assigned service bay before 7 am. So, even though we are finished, we were up and about. Our neighbors, John and Carolyn, were up early getting ready to leave for their home state of Florida. So, we said our good byes to them and then headed over to the service office to officially check out. With that done we decided to head out for a day trip.
We decided that we would go to Tishomingo State Park. The name Tishomingo is a Chickasaw name meaning "Warrior Chief or Medicine Leader". We first looked at some camp sites around a small lake, but quickly decided that we would not fit the spot, so we were off to see the other sites throughout the park.

The RV sites are around this lake

Pioneer Log is an example of the fine wood and stone craftsmanship of the early pioneers.

A wooden dam in the park

The Swinging Bridge dates back to 1930. The bridge crosses high above Bear Creek and is the entrance to the hiking trails that go along the creek and along the top of the canyon walls. Only 5 people at a time are allowed on the bridge.

This is a look down the Bear Creek from the swinging bridge.

A plant I saw while walking along the trial in the park. I wonder if you can eat these berries?

Taking time out to talk to one of the kids

We think this used to be a waterfall

I am not sure, but it looks my leader is lost?

When we left Tishomingo State Park, Iuka, MS was next on our list. The first stop was some lunch and then it was on to find the covered bridge and the Mineral Springs Park. We where having a hard time finding the bridge so I enlisted some help...

Thanks to the local sheriff, he took us straight to the bridge.

Covered can still drive through this one.

Across the street from the covered bridge is the Iuka Mineral Springs Park. The world famous mineral springs was named after Chickasaw Chief Iuka. The water won the 1902 World Fair prize for best mineral water.

Mineral Water Fountain

In downtown Iuka stands this little Church. It is an 1873 board and batten Carpenter Gothic Episcopal Church. It is used only for weddings and special events.

One last stop while in Iuka was the Woodall Mountain. It is the highest elevation in Mississippi at 806'. You take a scenic gravel road to the top. We actually had to use the 4-wheel drive to the top. Woodall Mountain is known as America's bloodiest high point because of the 1862 Battle of Iuka during the Civil War. Up to 300,000 troops passed through the area during the Civil War. Iuka was a popular mustering out location due to the plentiful springs and healthful climate.

Marker at the top of Woodall Mountain

King of the Mountain? I think he has had too much sun. It must be time to go for now!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Free At Last

Almost one month ago, we arrived here in Red Bay, Alabama at the Allegro Campground/Service Center to get an extra awning and some vent covers installed on the new motor home. Plus, we knew that there were a couple of spots on the paint that needed to be addressed. Well, today, we finally were released with all issues addressed and/or fixed. Needless to say, there was a lot more done than originally thought, but hey, we now have a better than new motor home.

And, yes, the propane line in question, is fixed and we have hot water. Just to complete that thought, Mark was at the factory at 6:00 this morning to make sure he knew about the correct fix. And, with that information, he returned to the service center at 7:00 and told them how they were going to fix it. Mission accomplished and we are free at last. And yes, we did make a visit to Mr. Tiffin's office today. He apologized for our frustrations and assured any future problems would be addressed. We are just glad to have everything at this time and bottom line...we love the motor home and plan to enjoy it every day and use it to make many happy memories.

So, after lunch, we decided to head out to find the third and final cemetery on our list. With some directions from the folks around here we set out looking for Pate Temple Cemetery. We went to it just like we had been there a hundred times. This is what we found when we got there.

We found this cemetery about 2 miles off the main road and up and around a logging trail

These headstones belong to Mark's Paternal Great Great Grandparents

We then found the headstones for 4 of the infant children of Mark's grandparents. They lost all 4 of these babies in a short period of time. I just can't imagine.

Ralph was not quite 18 months old

Nelarue was only 10 months old

They lost these twins at birth only 2 days after Nelarue died.

This has been very interesting to go to these old cemeteries and find all these headstones. It is almost like putting a face with a name. Somehow is makes a connection. I am glad we took the time to do this. So, even though it has been an ordeal for us to have to be here in Red Bay for the month, because, I am not sure we would have taken the time to come here to find these cemeteries.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Not Quite In Red Bay

Did anyone hear a loud scream today? If you did, it was Mark all the way from Red Bay.

Yeah, today, we got in a bay this morning to take care of the last 4 items on our list...that is...until...they found the propane line to the hot water heater had a kink in it! Well, after they discussed two or three different fixes to it, all of which Mark vetoed, nothing was done. So, this afternoon after closing time Mark and I went to the factory to find a 2009 Phaeton in the early stages of production to see how this line is suppose to be run from start to finish. After seeing for ourselves, Mark will be at the plant in the morning at 6:00 to pick up the hose and parts necessary to fix our problem. Then, at 7:00 when the service bay opens, Mark will be there to instruct the service tech on how to fix the problem. He assures me it will be okay.

Now, it has been me keeping Mark in tow these last few weeks and assuring him all will be okay, but when it comes to safety issues, it is I that becomes a little irate! I have no room for error when it comes to things like kinked propane hoses, etc. So, now it is Mark that is trying to keep me in tow and it may be me that is in Mr. Tiffin's office before this is said and done.

The only thing that I can be assured of at this point in time is that this motor home should be better than new because it has been in service longer than it took them to build it originally. LOL

Hope we have better news tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Quite Day In Red Bay

We were up early as usual. One more day at the Deaton Paint Facility and I hope they are finished. Last evening while visiting with John and Carolyn they mentioned they had already made their appointment for next year's service trip and that they had to take a late August date. Nothing available for September or October and November was too late for them. So, this morning before heading out to go to Deaton's, Mark went to the office to make our appointment. It was just as Carolyn said...we got a date of August 28, 2009, with nothing available until November.

With that chore taken care of, Mark headed off to Deaton's and I headed off to the laundry and then to find a place to get my hair done. One of the ladies in the service office gave me the name of a salon, so when I finished the laundry, I headed to main street in Red Bay. I found the salon and made an appointment for tomorrow to get a haircut. I am not as brave as Ellie, who cuts her own hair.

Mark and I made it back to the campground about the same time. He went to check back in with the service tech before we got set up just in case they had a bay waiting on us. No, luck. Our service tech was working on a motor home that had a water leak for 2 years! No, way, I said. Yep, and they found that the drain had come loose from the shower. How do you not know about that?

Well, of course, they need to be taken care of, so it will be tomorrow or Wednesday before we get back in a bay. With that bit of information, I settled in to do a few things here in the motor home and got a little paperwork done. Mark worked on polishing the wheels, etc.

Guess we will just hang around here for tonight...and see what the schedule is for tomorrow.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Finding More Family History

Before I share our day, I want to wish Andrew, our oldest grandson, Happy Birthday. Today he is 11 years old. Hope you had a great birthday. We Love You, Mop and Pop

Today we are starting our third week at Camp Red Bay. We were up early this morning and had to have the motor home back to the Paint Shop for some more touch up and back tomorrow for final buffing. We got the switch box hooked up today for the satellite and tomorrow or Wednesday they should finish up by replacing some cracked lenses. However, we have decided to stay on here in Red Bay through the weekend.

Once we got the motor home delivered to the paint shop and grabbed breakfast at Swamp John's, we came back to the campground to say our good-byes to Jim and Ellie. They are traveling down towards Columbus, MS for Ellie to meet up with some friends. We plan to meet up with them again on September 29 in Chattanooga, TN. But until then, Mark and I are here in Red Bay and continue to wander out and about from the campground.

After we found the Ridge Cemetery where his grandfathers parents were buried, today we went today to find the Benefield Cemetery where his grandmother's family was buried.

This was our only clue that we had arrived at the entrance to the cemetery!

This is the road to the cemetery

After about a mile up the dirt road we dead ended into the cemetery

This is the headstone for Granny Hall's parents
There were several of Granny's sisters and brothers also buried in this little cemetery
After the cemetery, we decided we would see what else was in the area. We saw a sign for the
G V Montgomery Lock and Dam so we took the turn.

This is one of 10 lock and dam systems along the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway

This is the low side of the lock. This one raises and lowers 50 feet

The view down the river from the lock

After leaving the lock and dam we drove down to Beaver Lake

After the drive around the lake, we headed back to Red Bay. By the time we had lunch, it was time to pick up the motor home at the paint shop. We got back to the campground and got settled in at our site. We got the schedule for tomorrow and then John and Carolyn, our next door neighbors came and invited us to dinner at the Chinese Buffet. Another fun day!