The Long Long Trailer

The Long Long Trailer

Have you heard of this movie? The Long Long Trailer was from 1953, where “Tacy and Nicky” are newlyweds that purchase a travel trailer. And in classic Lucy style, everything that could go wrong did.

That is how my last week started.

A few weeks prior, my friend Jen came to visit. She brought her copy of The Long Long Trailer, and it hit the nail on the head on all the perils a new travel trailer owner can fall into. Backing up, braking, weight limits, navigating… oh my. Pictures that I am including for this post is of that trip, not of my follies:

I broke my jack Sunday night. I was so thrilled with backing up and aligning the hitch on the first time, and flying through the rest of the hook up, that when I shifted from park to drive, I didn’t really move… and with a little gas, there was a lurch. I realized I missed a step.

A tow truck came, and was able to get me free from the 4×4 I was using as weight distribution, and he told me to head to a truck stop so I could get the bent jack sawed off.

And head to the TA I did. My set up was so meek pulling in with all of those tracker trailers, (and the lingo is just “tracker”). I walked up to the desk, and explained the situation, thank goodness the technician Nick took pity on me and  sawed it off free of charge. That guy gets my eternal thanks.

Not really having a plan after the National Western Complex, because I have hardly had a moment to have some forward thinking, I was ready to pull into a Walmart and call it a night.

Thanks to some ding-dong from whenever ago (who emptied his black tank in the parking lot), a slim amount of Walmarts in Colorado allow overnight parking (despite it being a “thing” that the company usually allows). None in Denver.

So I spun my wheels, and headed south, confronting my new reality of not being able to un-hitch due to my stupidity. I rolled into Cherry Creek State park and scored an electric spot as a walk-up. Little did I know then how cut throat this walk-up business is. Monday morning, I meandered over to the camping office to get my name on the list for walk-up spot for that evening.

I also called the RV dealer to add to my upcoming appointment: new jack please. I previously had an appointment set to take her in on Thursday, so that we could check out the leak.

I filled my water tank, parked the truck and trailer out of the way, and biked to the light rail station to get to work. Did you know that there are two “Colfax” light rail stations? I had a great tour of the suburbs via the rails on my way in going from one Colfax station to the one I really needed to go to.

That afternoon, as I was en route on my bike to a student’s thesis defense, the skies looked… ominous.

You may have heard that there was some hail in the Denver Metro region. My first time riding a bike to work of course. The poor student had the worst of it during her presentation, because of the noise us reviewers huddled around her for Q&A, a cozy group. To her benefit, she owned the presentation even more as she overcame the bizarre circumstance.

Biking back to the light rail stop amidst the mess that the hail had left in its wake was interesting. Headed back south to see what I was in for.

So to get a prized electric spot (as a walk-up on a random May Monday) you have to be present when they call your name. While I had been second on the list, and explained that I needed to go to work, there was nothing that could be done. I was able to park in a non-electric spot Monday night. Which at the time, was good enough. We hunkered down and continued to listen to the rain. No damage to Sylvia or Stella, thank the heavens, the hail didn’t make much of an impact in the south.

So… the non-electric spot really did prove to be non-electic. Somehow along the way everything just died. No propane was firing the fridge, batteries, dead. I had no clue where to start, nor did I have the time to find out. I was going to limp along until Thursday.

Tuesday morning, I decided to relocate, and chose an out-of-the-way street in the industrial area where I hoped no one would bug me. Biked to a meeting on Broadway, then north to school. My bike has come in handy! Wednesday I stayed parked in the industrial spot, but I did Lyft it that day, that evening I headed to Littleton to get my hairs done, and floundered a bit for another parking spot, since Walmart wasn’t an option, I found a rec center and hung out there for the night. Thursday morning, I drove north to Lazy Days for getting my self back together. Somewhere along the way, I was able to get stuff out of my freezer and put it in the fridge at work, not all was lost.

I’ll say this: everyone has been so helpful. Whether it’s random people helping me back into spots (still figuring that out, but may have had a breakthrough!) or folks offering me a place to stay as this boat gets patched up, it has been over whelming.

On top of that, Finals week and Graduation continued to bring tears to my eyes. My students, I think the world of them, and have been so blessed with them saying kind things.

So, the jack was fixed. For a dumb mistake, at least I didn’t wreck a wall. I do get to re-visit Lazy Days in June for another appointment to fix the damage from the leak. The leak was caused by a broken outside light where water was pooling, and coming in. Part of my cabinet is warped, and they will replace that. I am also planning to rip out one of the bench seats in the table area, so hopefully that will happen then as well.

And the electric, you ask? So… there’s this thing, a relay switch, to the battery, and it got switched off. Who knew? It is my belief that in all this weather that the dog brushed against it. Kioko is not a fan of storms and goes into a bit of a panic mode. The switch is back on, needless to say.

After a night on the floor Thursday night, it was good to be home. Friday and Saturday night, I parked off of Tennyson Street ahead of the Horseshoe Craft Market, as I was vending on Saturday. One hell of a busy, crazy, broken week. I was looking forward to my reservation at a regional park in Lakewood. One that I am still enjoying.

I’ve learned so much about people this week, and what Oprah said, still remains true: People show you who they are. I am also learning a heck of a lot about patience.

Pictures below are from Jen’s visit, we had a great romp around Sedalia, Buena Vista, and St. Elmo’s. This was a week prior to moving into Sylvia.

Waking up in ‘Murica cabin, Sedalia.
Nevertheless she persisted tattoo.
Kioko in ‘Murica.
St. Elmo Ghost Town.
Conquering mountains!
View from property where we stayed.

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