Well, this is it. Hard to believe that 2012 blew by as fast as it did. The only thing that seemed to drag on and last forever was the Presidential campaign – thought it would never end. Twenty-Twelve began with us right here at Rainbow Plantation. We enjoyed the functions at the clubhouse and worshipping at our church. In February the Maineiacs showed up to help us celebrate Mardi Gras.
March found us on the road with Mike and Peggy. We visited New Orleans for a little sightseeing and to sample a muffaletta sandwich. We made a stop by our home (Rainbow’s End in Livingston, Texas), before spending a couple of weeks in the Hill Country of Texas. The main attraction was San Antonio where we toured the Alamo, walked the River Walk, and partook in a tasty Mexican dinner. Trips were made to Fredericksburg to visit the Pacific War Museum and to sample some German dishes at Der Lindenbaum, the LBJ Ranch in Stonewall, and Bill’s Barbeque in Kerrville. Let us not forget that HUGE hamburger and a HUGE serving of onion rings at Alamo Springs; that meal lasted two days.
From the Hill Country we returned to Rainbow’s End for a couple of days and then it was off to Vidalia, Louisiana where we stayed at Riverview RV Park and dined at Nikki’s Restaurant (ooooo, that crawfish etouffee was some ol’ scrumptous). Vidalia is just across the river from Natchez, Mississippi. We took the carriage tour of Natchez, visited the Barber of Natchez Museum, and, of course, ate at the Pig Out Inn. Upon leaving Natchez Mike and Peggy headed north on the Natchez Trace and we headed south to return to Rainbow Plantation but, first, we made a stop by Bonifay, Florida to visit Randy and Terry.
We stayed at the Plantation for three weeks before heading out once again for our summer travels. First stop was Cedars of Lebanon State Park in Tennessee for a grand kid fix. Then we spent a couple of days at the Escapee’s Raccoon Valley before heading for Mt. Airy, North Carolina for a walk down Main Street Mayberry to visit Andy, Barney, and friends. I got a haircut at Floyd’s Barber Shop from the same barber who cut Andy’s hair when he lived there. Don and Jenny drove over from Mountain City, Tennessee to visit us for a day. After doing a little sightseeing, we stopped by Snappy Lunch for one of their famous Pork Chop Sandwiches.
Next stop was Bull Run Regional Park so we could visit with Joel and Mary in Alexandria, Virginia. From there we made tracks to Maine to spend time with my brother, Mike, and his wife Shauna as well as Mike and Peggy. Then we headed west with a stop in Litchfield, Connecticut for a visit with my aunt Marge who lives with my cousin Cheryl and her husband John. My other three cousins, Tim, Robbie, and Glenn showed up as well.
From Connecticut we continued heading toward Michigan. As we entered the Ohio turnpike we noticed smoke rolling out of the RV; it turned out to be a seized wheel bearing. Fortunately there was a truck / trailer repair facility within seven miles of our location so we were able to limp along slowly to get there. We ended up spending the night in their parking lot and they got us in the first thing in the morning. We were on the road again by 11 o’clock and made it to Shirley and Warren’s about seven hours later.
Our friends, Ray and Pat, have a nice RV site in Mecosta, Michigan where we spent a week before heading off to Petoskey to workamp at Hearthside Grove Luxury Motorcoach Resort. While in Petoskey, Matt, Jackie and kids came up for a vacation. While they were there, Mike and Peggy stopped by for a visit as well. We had a great week with all our visitors from a far. Of course, as you can guess, we did a little dining out as well. Out to Lunch for breakfast, the Pier for lunch (both in Harbor Springs), and the Pizza Palace in Mackinaw City.
The “job” wasn’t bad and the people were very nice, however, we ended up leaving early to return to Tennessee for babysitting duties while our daughter-in-law attended school in Chattanooga for her new job. The highlight of the year was a trip back to Virginia to be on hand for the birth of grand child number seven; Josiah Everette Fortner.
Then we turned our faces homeward with a couple of stops along the way. First to Raccoon Valley just north of Knoxville, Tennessee so we could visit Gene and Judi in their new home and then to La Grange, Georgia to visit with Mike and Gerri. We stayed at a COE park on West Point Lake which is right on the border of Alabama and Georgia and had a fantastic site. Mike and Gerri visited us at the campsite for a Honey Grill Chicken dinner and some good old fashioned Bocci Ball.
After a six hour travel day from there we were back in our stall here at Rainbow Plantation. Jim and Ellie hosted us for a travel day meal and Norm and Linda hosted us for a day after travel day meal. It was good to be home after almost six months on the road and to be with our RVing family once again. We arrived “home” at the end of September and have stayed put since catching up on a lot of “Ta Do” items.
Now it’s onto 2013. We’ve outlined most of our travel plans for the New Year. We’ll be making the TN, VA, ME, CT, MI, TN loop again only this year we’ll only be gone for less than three months. Tentatively, we may take a short trip with Mike and Peggy to Savannah, Georgia for our fortieth wedding anniversary and we would like to spend Christmas with Joel and Mary in Virginia. It all depends on the good old budget; right now it looks very tight and we’ll have to make a judgment call after our illustrious elected officials get done arm wrestling each other.
So, for now, we bid you a Happy New Year and May God Bless - - - - - - - -