Another day in this American Life

When the dogs and I walked out the door early this morning, the air wasn’t exactly refreshing. It never really cooled off much last night, and humidity arrived well ahead of the dawn. It served as fair warning of a day that promised an afternoon high of 97°F, with a “heat index” of 110°F.

After installing Ernie’s TPMS yesterday I was curious to see where the tire pressures would settle overnight. Baseline cold pressures (which is where I set them) are 115psi front and 100 rear. In the heat of the day, right after I fitted the transmitters, the TPMS read the fronts at 116psi, the rears at 102psi.

This morning they were at 113psi and 98psi — considering the tolerances of the transmitters and my tire gauge, that’s perfect. On this scorcher of a day, of course, by this afternoon they’d returned to 118psi and 103psi. That’s acceptable, too.

Still with some quiet time to myself, I test-drove (figuratively) my solution for the tow bar’s safety cables — the 12-inch extensions worked just the way I hoped they would. Then I opened one of Ernie’s basement bays, pulled out a couple of totes and stowed 80 pounds of dog food in the designated dog-food spot.

I have to say that the storage scheme I hatched over the winter, even before our “shakedown cruise,” has held up well. I’ve made adjustments here and there — after all, no battle plan survives the first shot fired — but the tweaks have been minor, really. Color me pleased as can be.

I addressed a few other items on our pre-launch checklist, then walked over to the office and asked our hosts if it’d be ok to give Ernie’s generator a half-hour of “exercise” (an important part of routine maintenance). See, generators are against the rules in most parks, including this one, because of noise and fumes, unless the provided shore power goes down.

Because we’ve cultivated a good relationship with the people who own this campground, and since the sites around ours were vacant early this afternoon, I got permission. The diesel generator started easily and ran smoothly under load. I let it idle, unladen, for several minutes to cool down before shutting it down and declaring it ready for the next leg of our journey.

Deb and I hopped in the Jeep this afternoon and took off, mostly to escape our chores for a little while. On a whim we stopped by a seller of mobile homes, just to gawk. And we dropped in on the dealer where we’d bought Mercy to get another 30-day temporary tag — our only option, since the title is lost in the mail.

On our drive back to the campground we detoured through old Harrison. In all the time we’ve been here, we’d never done that on purpose. It’s a classic Heartland town, if a bit tired in places. There’s a genuine town square, with the county courthouse in the center.

There are no parking meters.

We parked Mercy and strolled, working our way quickly to the shady side of the street. A small pub, The Pour House, drew our attention and we ducked inside for a bite to eat — grilled cheese and tomato soup.

Ok, we had a three-cheese panini and a bloody Mary.

As we settle in for the evening now, taking stock of our Thursday, we smile — once again, our American Life is richer for having spent another day in this place.

Take care of yourselves, Patriots. Stay calm. Stay sharp. Stay free.

#WiseUp #LibertyOrDeath