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  • Writer's pictureInger and Jeff Latreille

Hank and the Stairs

~Wednesday, January 18, 2023~

Day 949

Out the door by 9:45 to get to the Ford dealer in Mesa to get a few things done for Hank, i.e. oil change and a tire rotation. We wanted to get the 75,000 mile maintenance done but they were booked out longer than we’d be in Arizona. So it looks like we’ll be taking care of that when we have a large chunk of time in Florida. Larry Miller Ford had a nice coffee shop/lounge, perfect for my hour wait to catch up on emails and such. When Paul came to get me, he informed me that the front brakes were in the “yellow” zone, with one side being closer to “red”; no surprise with all the towing we’re doing though we’ve driven mostly highway miles. But hey, getting 80,000 miles of use out of them is pretty darn good. The back brakes were still in the “green”. In trying to keep those rotors in good shape, we decided to get the front brake pads replaced, adding about another hour to my wait. No problem….I had plenty of computer work to do. Feels good to get at least one safety item done before our big drive east.

Since I was already in the bigger city of Mesa, I knew I’d score on the many errands I had to run after taking care of the truck……Target, WalMart (only for RV toilet paper), post office and the grocery store. Between waiting for the truck to get done and taking care of my errands, I didn’t get back until after 5:00, where I found Jeff under the trailer, still working on those trailer steps. Poor guy, it’s just been one problem after another with those. Obviously our afternoon hike was not to be (something we were hoping to do on our last day of being here).

What he thought would be a 2-hour project today, turned into a whole afternoon. He said it’s probably been the most complicated thing he’s worked on, on the trailer, next to fixing the split lift kit that had detached from the trailer when we were in Alaska (remember that?). But for the steps, he was puzzled why there was such an issue in getting them to retract. Finally, he discovered one of the side plates was on backward causing things not to line up properly. After shouting out a few expletives and about to give up, Jeff decided to take the whole thing apart and reassemble it. While he kept at it (working by headlamp), I made dinner. An hour later, he came back in with an adorable “Rocky” dance. High five people!! He did it!! The steps are officially back in business. 👏🙌How is it that working steps can get one so excited? Hey, anything beats having to use a milk crate to get in and out of a trailer. Good job babe!

We have an early day tomorrow so packing up as much as we could tonight would help ease the breakdown we’ll have left to do in the morning for our eastward trek toward Louisiana.

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