Postcard from New Mexico- 4

29 April 2012

Santa Fe

Getting closer to D-Day. Maybe.

New glasses please!

All the appointments are done and last Tuesday we went to LensCrafters to order new lenses. Lenses cost a lot more than I remember the last time in 2010. All together it was about 12 days of diesel fuel for 5 pair of lenses plus one pair of frames- almost $2,400 after the 30% discounts. Yikes! As far as I know there’s still no safe way to drive if you need glasses and don’t have the right ones, so we paid the piper.

The biggest gripe for me was that the previous pair of clear progressive lenses (ordered from Eye Associates) were not ground to be centered in front of the eye: I have to turn my head slightly to the right (eyes to the left) and incline my head to find the best focus at shorter distances. I have the same problem with my sun glasses which also have progressive lenses. Plus I noticed that the lenses of my sun glass are starting to delaminate. Which is odd because they weren’t supposed to be laminated in the first place. Progressive lenses are not for everyone, but maybe a contributing reason is that not every optical lab knows how to make and install them! I’ve had good luck with LensCrafters in the past, so my expectations are high.


With our lenses on order, it’s time to once again clean and rearrange the basement (and maybe I’ll discover where I put my knife sharpening tools- the Admiral is getting really cranky about dull knives!). My biggest problem is finding room for dog food. Lots of dog food! Annie has to eat a special diet as the higher fiber content of most dog food is an irritant to her gut. So we feed them both the same gastro-intestinal formulation made by Royal Canin. We go through a 10 kilo bag every 24 days, so we need about 7 bags of this pricey stuff to get the girls through the summer. It’s only sold by vets and I don’t want to mess with finding it as we travel. I try to buy the Royal Canin on the internet when I can and did get 3 bags from, but the remaining 4 bags will have to come from Smith Veterinary Hospital here in Santa Fe.

Btw, Smith Veterinary is somewhat iconic in these parts. Remember Smokey Bear, the mascot of the US Forest Service? The original Smokey Bear (not the cartoon bear!) was orphaned in a fire in Lincoln National Forest, New Mexico, in May 1950. He had burns on his feet and abdomen, so the USFS brought the cub to Santa Fe where Dr. Ed Smith, the founder of Smith Veterinary, treated his burns. Today his grand daughter Kathy and her husband Mike Dobesh, both vets, run the veterinary hospital.

The Admiral has been doing some spring cleaning and has managed to fill the back seat of the truck with odds and ends of clothing, exercise mats, place mats, extra cups, etc. You wouldn’t think getting rid of a few extra clothes would make much difference, but the 2 wardrobes and the bedroom storage cabinet are actually useable again. Big improvement.

The truck. Again.

My biggest concern is the truck. It will have to go back to Spear’s Auto Center. Scott found the biggest problem with the Banks tuner (a pushed-back pin in the main harness), but it appears there’s another connection problem somewhere. Frequently, not too long after having started the truck, the engine will hesitate for a moment. After that hesitation it runs OK, and (maybe it’s my imagination) the mileage seems to improve. Plus there’s sometimes a code coming from the Banks equipment that says there’s an ‘Engine Position Sensor fault‘. Whatever that sensor is, it sounds like an intermittent. So I’m convinced there’s another problem in the wiring that started when everything was disconnected back in November.

Streaming video

I bought a video-streaming box (ROKU 2 XS) in hopes we can download a movie here and there. Works with all the major sources. Getting movies on DVD from NetFlix will be a problem while we’re moving. An internet friend in NYC got one of these ROKU boxes and thought it was a winner. Probably is if you have a good internet connection, but the flaky connections we have in RV parks may present a challenge! It was cheap enough ($90, free shipping) that I thought we could experiment.

The countdown

It all depends on the truck and Scott Spear. If he gets lucky and can find the bad connection, we can be on our way about 9 May. If it proves to be as difficult as most ghost problems, it could be longer. In any case we don’t want to get on the road until it’s resolved.

About bruce10b

Celia and I are full-time RVers wintering (and now summering!) in southeast AZ. Our 2 Bernese Mountain Dogs, Annie & Kelly, prompted the name of this blog but sadly are gone because of kidney failure. They will live forever in our hearts.
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