Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Winnebago: A Not So Happy New Year. Chapter Five

During the Christmas holidays, we visited family. We spent New Year's Eve at our niece's house, parked in her driveway. New Year's morning, we started home.

We got about two miles. We were stranded on the service road of a busy highway.

There is no service facility open on New Year's Day.

The next day, we got someone to bring us a new belt. It didn't fit.

The right size belt was not available in Texas. It had to be shipped from Oklahoma. For five days, we were stranded.

By August, we were feeling optimistic enough to make a trip to Oklahoma City.

We didn't even make it to Ardmore. The closest place that had a tow truck big enough to haul a Winnebago was in Oklahoma City.

We had planned to camp at Lake Thunderbird with Wick's brother and his wife. And we had picked up their teen age grandson, so he could go with us to meet them at the lake.

In addition to a teenager, we also had our Pomeranian, Frankie.

Once the Winnebago was hooked up to the tow truck, which took more than an hour, we piled into the little Jeep we had been towing, and started to follow the tow truck. Less than 30 minutes later, the transmission fell out of the Jeep.

So we all piled into the cab of the tow truck. Wick sat in the passenger seat, and Frankie, the boy, and I wedged ourselves on the edge of the sleeper.

Wick's brother agreed to meet us at a highway intersection near a Wal-mart. Unfortunately, the trucker couldn't get off the highway to take us up to the Wal-mart. He pulled over onto a vee between the highway and another highway that was merging with it.

We had thrown a few things into a couple of Wal-mart bags, such as our meds, and a change of clothes. We had to cross a couple of lanes, climb a fence, cross an access road, and walk about a quarter of a mile to get to the Wal-mart. Suddenly, it occurred to us that we could not take Frankie into the Wal-mart.

Looking further down the pavement shimmering in the August heat, we saw a Lowe's lumberyard. We headed there. I collapsed onto a handy folding chair, and Wick went in search of cold water. We poured some over Frankie, who was panting heavily, drank some, then poured the rest over our heads.

Finally, Wick's brother arrived, just in time to prevent his grandson from expiring of embarrassment.

The Winnebago was towed to Freightliner. We expected it to be fixed within a few days.

Thirteen days later, we were still at Wick's brother's house. Fortunately, we are a close family, and get along well. But thirteen days is a long time to have company, and I am sure they were relieved when we finally were able to pick up the Winnebago.

The mechanic at Freightliner told us that it was overfilled with oil, which had spewed out all over the engine, and that the radiator had just water, no coolant. We were nonplussed. After some discussion, we concluded that these problems must have occurred while the Winnebago was at McClain's being repaired.

Our next step was to find a lawyer.


Linds said...

Oh Wow. This sounds like the Car From Hell I bought in 2002. Nightmare time.

I have been aiting for the next episode, and suddenly 4 appear! I am looking forward to the continuing saga!

Theresa said...

My husband and I have been looking at campers/RVs for a few years now. No definite time line in sight, but we know that eventually we want one so that we can travel in comfort and not have to sleep in motels! So far, you've managed to convince me that a Winnebago is not something to seriously consider!

Anxiously awaiting "The Rest Of The Story"!