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Photo by H.S. Cooper © SOPWITH

Photo by H.S. Cooper © SOPWITH

If you find yourself near Ozark, Alabama, you might want to visit the U.S. Army Aviation Museum at Fort Rucker. It is located off Highways 84 and 231.

The museum has a number of aircraft on display, in addition to some interesting exhibits like a piece of red cloth from the Red Baron’s plane, a section of the Berlin Wall and a solo cycle.

Admission is free and the museum is open every day (except Sunday and major holidays). The only requirement is that anyone over 16 years of age must show photo I.D. at the gate and the vehicle owner’s may be asked to show proof of vehicle registration and insurance. There is adequate parking for your tow (no RVs) unless there is an event underway, then you may find yourself parking in the grass.

For more information, visit their website at: http://www.armyavnmuseum.org/

Photo by H.S. Cooper © ARMY AVIATION MUSEUM

Photo by H.S. Cooper © ARMY AVIATION MUSEUM

 

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Photo by H.S. Cooper ©

Photo by H.S. Cooper © No, Thanks!

Stopped a flea market the other day… boy, you just never know what you are going to see when you get off that highway! 😉

 

Photo by H.S. Cooper © STORMY HIGHWAY

Photo by H.S. Cooper © STORMY HIGHWAY

The highways were just a little stormy yesterday… So glad not to be on the road today with wind advisories and threats of rain, sleet and possible black ice!

On the Road to Disaster by H.S. Cooper

If you haven’t thought about what to do in an emergency situation while on the road, consider some pre-planning with your family before making those travel plans. For more information on preparing for natural disasters, check out my book On the Road to Disaster.

Although it’s hard to escape flu-season, there are some things you can do to protect your family from disease while you are on the road…

Have hand sanitizer in your vehicle. Make sure you have a small bottle for each person (put it in each person’s door or the center council and mark their name on it). Each time a person gets into the vehicle, they should clean their hands. If the person handled other public items prior to getting in (such as touching a door or shopping cart), make sure he or she wipes off their door handle, door lock or window area (anywhere that is touched) with a handy-wipe. Also make sure to have a liter bag in your vehicle to dispose of dirty handy-wipes and facial tissue. We dispose of our liter bag every stop.

Have individual handy-wipes in your purse, pocket or backpack and use them! Do not rely on public restrooms to have filled soap containers or even hot water. I am surprised when I do come across a fully-stocked public restroom. If you are an RVer currently on the road, it’s best that you don’t rely on public restrooms. Use your own RV if you can get access to the bathroom with the slides in. Some RVers don’t like using their own bathroom during transit because they don’t like carrying extra water or don’t want to have anything in their holding tanks. You don’t have to have your water tank filled to use your toilet. You can use purchase hand sanitizer that requires no water to wash your hands and place a gallon (or two) jug of water in your bathroom sink to use to flush.

Another thing to avoid is eating out while you are on the road. We’re RVers – we’re self-contained! We shouldn’t rely on McDs or Flying J to feed us every hundred miles. Make some sandwiches or an easy-fix meal before you leave. Pull over at a rest area or find a parking spot wherever you fuel up and grab a bite.

One thing that bothers us is the lack of sanitation in restaurants. Ever have a sickly cashier walk over to get your fries? Ever see the cook come out of the restroom wearing his or her apron? And people licking their fingers and picking up utensils at buffets… Ekk! Keep your eyes posted for potential problems. And if you can, call them out on it. Let the manager know what you saw so they can take action – it could save someone’s life!

Most RVers do have their own cell phones and computers; however, if you don’t and have to rely on a pay phone or visit a local library to log-on, remember to use handy-wipes over the phone and number pad and the computer keyboard and mouse.

These are just a few ways to protect your family while travelling. With the spread of disease and a major flu epidemic today, this is a concern you shouldn’t take lightly.

Photo by H.S. Cooper ©

Photo by H.S. Cooper © CHRISTMAS TORNADO

On Christmas afternoon we found ourselves in the midst of severe weather and potential tornadoes. Instead of watching holiday movies, all eyes were on the local weather!

The RV resort lacked adequate shelter facilities, so when the tornado warning went into effect, we grabbed our hardhats (I knew that souvenir hardhat from Hoover Dam would come in handy), a couple stiff pillows and flashlights, and then made a mad dash to the Chevy Silverado. We buckled ourselves in and drove to a low ditch-area near the park entrance. Moments later we saw that other Campers had the same idea.

Fortunately the storm passed quickly over the resort; however, a park less than two miles away had a tornado touch-down. Thankfully no one was injured but several homes were destroyed.

Sometimes you have to make the best of a bad situation. Keeping alert of the weather and having a type of RV emergency plan can keep you and your family safe.

Photo taken by H.S. Cooper ©

Photo taken by H.S. Cooper © DEATH VALLEY NP

It’s time to dig out that new 2013 calendar! The first of the entrance “fee-free” days of the year is scheduled for January 21st in honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. On this day entrance fees to U.S. National Parks will be waived. In addition, some other special offers may apply.

For more information and trip planning links, visit the National Park Service’s website: http://www.nps.gov/findapark/feefreeparks.htm

Photo by H.S. Cooper ©

Photo by H.S. Cooper ©

A friendly reminder to change your smoke detector batteries and test your carbon monoxide detectors in the RV at the first of the New Year! And if you are a Full-Timer, don’t forgot to schedule those yearly check-ups that usually get overlooked while you are on-the-road.

 Hope 2013 brings you safe travels! 🙂

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