A Few Random Updates – Cracks, Ovens & Dog-Surfing
I figured it’s about time I update all you folks on our goings-ons. As of today we are tentatively looking at travel plans (probably Utah-bound) in the next month or so, all depending on various items which will become clear to us in the next few weeks. Yes, I am being deliberately vague and mysterious and will remain so until we decide what we’re doing. Not only is it far more exciting (for you as a blog reader) that way, but it’s my privilege as a woman and a free-lovin-open-wheelin nomad to have no definite plans. And while the weather remains THIS perfect in San Diego, we’re staying until the itch hits us to go….which it will….just not quite yet…
With that perfectly clear, I’ll update you on a few (no doubt) exciting going-ons that we’ve had here:
1/ Our CR-V Cracks Up
We had a rock hit our CR-V in Desert Hot Springs back in November which left a small, but definite crack in the window. Being conscientious folks we immediately called Safelite (who we’ve had excellent results with before) to come out and repair it. In 97% of cases (and no I’m not making that up…I was actually quoted that precise number) the crack is filled effortlessly and you’re on your way. In 3% of cases the crack-fill fails and actually grows. Well, guess which side of the equation we ended up on? Our barely visible bullet-hole grew to a long and very prominent 3-inch crack. Darn it! Safelite offered a discount on windshield replacement, but at the time we weren’t willing to spend either the time or $$ to get the window replaced so we decided to leave be until we couldn’t take it anymore.
Which fast-forwards us to this week. Our pet crack had by now expanded to a handy 7 inches and was visibly growing by the day so I decided the situation was getting dire. Off to Safelite to get it replaced. All-in-all an easy and very satisfying solution. Safelite take care of everything for you, offer a lifetime guarantee on the seal and do an excellent & efficient job. Wouldn’t hesitate to use them again.
P.S. If you’ve followed the blog a reaaaly long time and are wondering about the foot-long crack we got in the RV windshield in Wyoming our first year out…beyond all expectation it is STILL HOLDING! At some point we’ll no doubt need to replace the windshield, and when we do we’ll probably use one of the RV glass specialists in Eugene, OR but until then….let it ride, let it ride.
2/ Our Microwave/Convection Dies…AGAIN!
If you were following the blog last year you may have remembered that our microwave/convection oven crapped out in the middle of a rib-roasting right before we reached Florida. Well, it happened again. We’ve come to the conclusion that it’s the fault of our inverter, and this has been supported by other bloggers & commenters. You see we have Magnum-2000 Modified Sine-Wave Inverter/Charger that we use to run our AC electronics & appliances while we’re boondocking (i.e. not hooked-up to shore power). The inverter’s job is to take our 12V DC battery power and convert it to 120V AC power. There are 2 main types of inverters on the market -> Modified Sine Wave and the much more expensive Pure Sine Wave:
- Modified Sine Wave (MSW) Inverters “approximate” the sine-wave shape of AC power, but do it in a “blocky” manner giving a step-function-shaped output which can be somewhat noisy too.
- Pure Sine Wave (PSW) Inverters provide a nice, smooth output which is pretty much exactly like the quality of power you’d get at home.
For most small, basic electronics MSW is fine, but for sensitive items or big appliances with motors or compressors like refrigerators, air conditioners and microwaves it can cause damage over time (read more about inverters here and here). Our big, ol (and did I mention expensive?) Sharp R-1894 Microwave/Convection is a beast of a machine and always sounds like it’s “struggling” when we run it off the MSW inverter. Although we don’t use it much in the boonies, I have no doubt this is what has caused its’ now twice-early demise. It’s still under warranty so we are getting it fixed at a local shop, but we will likely think twice about using it while boondocking in the future, and if it tanks again we’ll probably yank it out and replace it with a cheaper (and much smaller) microwave. We rarely use the convection oven anyway (we have a propane oven for roasting/baking which we use constantly) and this one item is not worth the $$-upgrade to a Pure Sine Wave Inverter….at least not yet…
3/ Polly Learns To Surf -> Sort Of
Being in San Diego encourages one to act like a San Diegan, and of course that means hanging loose, beach-bumming and surfing. Paul was a workable surfer back when we lived in the area, but Polly never mastered the art. Given there is both dog-surfing, dog kayaking and dog-paddle-boarding in the area we decided it was time to introduce the girl to the sport. So, off we went to our fav spot at Fiesta Island for a romp in the water. Now Polly is a rather skittish doggie and it always takes her time and lots of positive encouragement to learn new tricks (it took a year before she enjoyed swimming), so we knew this was going to be an event.
But all-in-all she did amazingly well. We had few rocky starts and some suspicious and rather unbalanced jumps on the board, but in the end she did manage to get and stay (somewhat) on and even had a few strokes of Paul paddling next to the board. It wasn’t exactly big surf, and I can’t quite claim that we “hung 10”, but they DO say the toughest part is getting up the board and that she did….so a surfer dog I now declare her to be 🙂
And with that I leave you with just one last thought….or rather one last picture. Should you wonder what we’re doing or where we are, just imagine we’re lounging luxuriously in the motorhome hanging out in near-perfect temps right by the water.
It’s a darn close approximation anyway 🙂