From Grand Isle to Wisconsin, April 7-May 6

Saturday, May 6, 2023

We departed Grand Isle on Friday April 7 with plans to overnight in Laurel, MS en route back to Blount County and our home church, Lester Memorial, for Easter Sunday.  Shortly before making it through New Orleans we had a check engine light on Fred.  We researched and called Freightliner.  Everything still seemed okay but we did determine that we were fine to continue driving for the short term.  Long story short – the only place who could find to work on Fred on Easter weekend was the Freightliner Oasis dealer in Jackson, MS.  We were so looking forward to being “home” for Easter for the first time in several years but seemed it probably would not happen.  We prayed and trusted God.  We arrived at Empire Truck Sales about 5:30 pm – without having to be towed the last few miles as we were warned could happen.  Thank you, Jesus!  All the folks there were great.  They gave us a tour of the facilities and said they couldn’t work on Fred that night (they work 24/7) but would get us in first thing Saturday morning.  They showed us where to park and provided a 50 amp power connection.  At 7 am Saturday the technician was knocking on our door.  Empire provides great service while you wait – large, clean, comfortable lounge, free laundry facilities and showers, and unlimited free popcorn.  Amazingly, by 11:00 am we were back on the road toward Alabama.  For the motorhome folks, the technician cleared the code, forced a regen on the exhaust system, rechecked everything and told us Fred was good to go.  If you ever need help, we highly recommend Empire Truck Sales.  We were back at Camp Sumatanga (our go-to campground when we are home) before dark and were at the Lester Memorial Sunrise Service at 6:00 am!  We love Easter – the most important day in our year and so blessed to be at our home church this year!

While in Alabama, we had dental and hair appointments and then Tuesday left to attend the Switch It Up Huddle in Sevierville, TN.  It was a beautiful time of year to be in the Smokey Mountains.  We were able to take time off from the Huddle and visit Cades Cove.  Always love to see the wildlife there – turkey, deer, and bear this time.  We had the Switch It Up Give Back on Friday, working at the children’s home in Sevierville.  As usual, we had a great time meeting new Switch Crew members, lots of fun activities and a great worship service Sunday and great entertainment.  Again it was hard to say goodbye to our friends but Monday we all went our separate ways.

We arrived back in Johnston, SC mid-afternoon.  Always great to be back with family.  While in SC, we worked on building an additional cabinet for BB (our Class B), visits with the nieces and nephews and made a another quick trip back to Alabama.

On Wednesday of this week, departed for Antigo, WI.  We again were reminded just how bad much of the interstate system in the USA has become.  It was 1,174 miles of mostly rough roads but fortunately three days of uneventful travel.  We arrived at Antigo Lake RV Park Friday afternoon and enjoyed the welcoming hugs of our friends Shar and Phil.  We will again be working with them and other A Year to Volunteer members, at Raptor Education Group, Inc (REGI).  We were here in 2021 and look forward to the next 2 weeks.  You can expect more eagle and other raptor pictures.  Hope everyone has a great weekend.

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