Along the Natchez Trace

Thursday, June 27, 2013

On The Mend....

Before I get into the nitty-gritty, let me welcome a couple of new readers...  Mary-Pat and Jody.  I always appreciate all you folks and love your comments.  Thanks so much!

Things are going as well as can be expected...
The good thing is, the broken bone in Bill's ankle does not require a plaster (or whatever they make them from these days) cast.  He wears this boot and uses our Leki walking stick when he wants to go outside.
While Bill very seldom wears shorts, they have become the attire of the day.
He's getting a bit of a tan in places that never see the sun.
And, nope, nothing risque either....  but his knees are getting some color.  Because of the boot he sure is getting some strange patterns on his skin.

On Sunday I guess I stood on an ant hill while filling my bird feeders.  While they weren't fire ants, the ants that got under the straps of my sandals bit me several time.  I'm kinda allergic to insect bites, and even though I got rid of those ants really quick, the damage was done.  My foot swelled up, blisters formed and my foot itched like crazy until yesterday.

So...  what happens then?  I was shifting some potted plants around and apparently one of them had either ants or another biting insect on it.
Yep!  My hand swelled up....
It only has 3 blisters, but they itch like the devil!
Kinda makes me laugh, though.... maybe this is one way to get rid of wrinkles?
All those ugly veins and wrinkles are just about gone in my left hand...  now... what about all those age spots?  Oh well...  I never said I'd grow old gracefully...  but I sure have fun anyway!

So...  that takes care of me and Bill and our maladies....

Yesterday we took the motorhome to the Ford dealership in Stephenville for its "doctor" appointment.
We have 154,000 miles on our rig and have never had the plugs changed.  Just lately Bill could feel it "missing" as he's driving down the highway.
Decided to get a tune-up.  Last week we checked with the Ford place in Granbury.  Well...  bring it in and leave it...  they'd get to it in 3 or 4 days.  Excuse me.... we live in our motorhome.  Well, come in early... at 7am.... and they'd get to it when they could.  Also, Bill should go across the building to the parts department to see if they had the right plugs.  Oh come'on....  we're the customers and Bill is hobbling around in his boot.  Seemed to us that the service dept could make a quick call (heck, they could almost yell over) to the parts and check.  The final decision to go somewhere else was made when they said that Bill could not stay in the rig while it was being worked on.  
Since this is our home and everything we have is in it, Bill always stays in the rig during the kinds of work that require the service folks be inside.  Even when we get new tires and things like that, he stays with, if not in, the rig.

Anyway, we left the Granbury Ford dealership and checked with the Ford in Stephenville.  Each city is about 20 miles from where we're at...  just different directions.
No problem...  just bring the rig in...  they'll do the tune-up.
It's a 2001 Ford V-10, and is the model that takes special tools to change the plugs.  Kind of a specialized procedure.
This photo is taken from inside...  they have to take the console out, and then take the panel from below the dash just to get to the components.  (And... I took this while inside the rig while the work was being done.)

Bill had them put in a new fuel filter, but the air filter only needed cleaning.
Altogether the whole thing took just under 4 hours (including the test drive when it was done).  The mechanic was friendly, polite and quite efficient.  
They had quoted a price of $400 when we made the appointment.  The total cost was $368.00
If we ever have any other problems while here at our daughter's, this is definitely the place we'll be heading.
So...  I think we're all on the mend and doing better now.

And...  just because I like this photo, I'm adding it to the end of this post...
This male Painted bunting is trying his darnedest to get some seed through the clear plastic side of the feeder....

I sure have a good time watching the birds no matter where I am or what they're doing!

That's All For Today!


  1. oh jeeeez ... when I was at my MILs in east Texas ... we had the 5th wheel parked in back ... I didn't notice the ants until OMG I'm dying ... saw these horrible blisters and such ... wasn't poison ivy/oak ... it was freaking fire ants!

    little rat bastards. The remedy was hot water. as hot as you can bear ... let me fetch that ... I still have the information ... this was at least five years ago and I never .... NEVER want to experience fire ants EVER again. hurt like hell!

    "This will work for anything that itches, including ant bites (stings). Run your hot water tap until your find a temperature that you can barely stand without screaming.

    Now we need to emphasize here that you do not make the water so hot that you get burned or scalded. As hot as you can stand it, but no more. We do not want you to get hurt!

    Put the affected area under the running water. You will first feel the itch INCREASE; don't chicken out at this point! After a few seconds the itch will feel like it has been washed away.

    That is because it has; the histamines have literally been brought to the surface of the skin by the very hot water and washed off. You will feel relief now for hours. Don't leave your skin under the water past a few seconds of relief, because there is no additional benefit to be gained by this. The itch may return hours later, but you can repeat the treatment then.

    The neat thing is that it seems to return a little weaker each time. This can make the difference between being driven to distraction by the itching and not being able to sleep, and being able to live a normal day."

    hiss on 'em... hope you and Bill and your motorhome are done with the thises and thats... got to be hot where you are too ...

  2. The garden crew and I got a half hour weeding done before the gnats did us in. We'll give it another go tomorrow, and probably succumb. Think what whooses we'd be, confronted by fire ants. You two keep on recovering, down there.

  3. I'm glad Bill is doing okay with that boot. You are such an outside person, at least you're outside a lot, I'm surprised you swell up like that with bites. I'd imagine you get bitten just because you're outside. Amazing. I guess you do okay with the swelling and it finally goes down? I usually get a little itchy bump if I'm bitten, but not too bad.

    That first dealership was unbelievable. I would NOT want them in my rig, for sure. I've never had a problem staying inside when work is being done - If they don't like it, they can lump it. I'm glad you took your business elsewhere. :)

  4. Sounds like the second dealer was the way to go alright. Nice that you found them.

    I stepped in a nest of ants in a campground in Bishop, CA a couple of years ago. I was right beside a creek so I jumped in (it was shallow!). I thought that would wash them off but most of them just hung on for dear life (MINE!). I was holding two dog leashes and dancing around in the water trying to brush all the ants off and Russ was across the creek laughing!

    Bill looks like he's being tortured by posing for that picture LOL. Hope his ankle continues to mend. Mobility issues are no fun.

  5. I got a good laugh out of the swelling. Think I'll go stick my head in ant hill!

  6. Love the pictures of the painted buntings. When I get bug bites I apply a paste of baking soda and water makes the swelling go down.

  7. There just has to be a better way to deal with wrinkles. My sister fractured her ankle and all she needed to wear was the boot. She healed really well with it so good luck to Bill with his.

  8. I had never heard of fire ants until my daughter moved to Texas. One thing my granddaughters enjoy when they visit us is running on the lawn with no shoes...something they don't do in Texas, just in case ants have moved in. I hope you and your husband continue on the road to recovery. I look forward to reading about more of your adventures. My spouse retires next mfonth and we hope to hit the road with our RV this fall.

  9. You are in such a hot place right now, I assume, that Bill should feel cooler with shorts on.

    I'm not sure I want that way to get rid of wrinkles. ;)

  10. Wow, what pretty birds! Bill & I can be twins right now! But my boot isn't as tall as his is. I hope he heals well. I can't believe the Ford place, I'm fuming!!! This is where bad names come from! I just drive around until I can find a place that will take me & my rig in times like this. It's not always easy to find something, but eventually, I do. I'm glad you found a place you are happy with.
    And owie on your foot & hand. Not fun!
    Keep us updated on Bill. Poor guy. It's not fun hobbling in that boot. I had to find a tennis shoe that was taller so walking could be easier. It can kill the hip & back otherwise. Maybe he can find a lovely pump to wear? (I think I'm a safe distance away for these comments, right?)

  11. Glad you're all on the mend. Your hand sure did swell up! The gnat bites around home give me big welts and they make me itch.

  12. There are a lot of putz's in the service world. I'm glad you found a good one. I smile every time I see the painted bunting on your header. What a gorgeous bird!

  13. Hi Sharon and Bill:
    Thanks for welcoming me to your blog; I'm really enjoying your posts. Today's a day for me to stay inside - can't even do any work on my new (to me) Fleetwood Flair that's parked out in front. I learned, the hard way, that I can't use the roof air conditioner with my 15AMP home hook-up; so, I worked a little this morning at about 6:30, then called it quits for the day - temperature's rising. We're in an horrific heat wave here in CA .... 107 yesterday, expected 110 today and hotter tomorrow - where in the h**l is the ocean cooling system? Here in the Central Valley we don't get too much help from ocean breezes and coastal fog in the Summer, but this is ridiculous!
    Now, the nurse in me has some advice: If you haven't already, you may want to keep a little anti-bug bite kit at hand. It appears that you have a real allergy that is not very specialized as to species, etc. When one has such reactions to bites, it's possible that those allergic reactions could get more severe. Allergies are very strange phenomena as the culprit is your own immune system. How your system manages each 'toxic' onslaught in the future is unknown. It's better to be prepared rather than sorry. If anaphylaxis should occur, there is OFTEN NOT TIME to seek help. Just a word to the wise. Have a great Sunday.