We sadly waved goodbye to Spartan by noon on Wednesday. Sadly, HA, not hardly, we were actually jumping for joy to get out of there. Since the 44 point inspection was not covered under warranty we were a little poorer but very happy that everything seemed to be resolved or so we hoped. Overall we were pleased with their service and thought the training class was very worthwhile.
As we pulled onto the highway, we were a little apprehensive – Spartan had said that sometimes when they replaced the Meritor gear it would be better but in a few cases it was noisier. Please, please, please don’t let that be the case!
Wow, what a difference! Now we knew what it meant to have a quiet coach! It was one of those things that you didn’t realize how noisy it was until it was gone. And even though they said they couldn’t find anything wrong with the steering, it was much better, perhaps it was the alignment or perhaps some other adjustment they made, whatever it was, Rob was a happy camper!
Rather than go directly to Entegra, we called to make a reservation at the Shipshewana South campground so we could catch up on laundry, empty/fill our tanks, etc. Remember in a previous post I said if you wanted to see the quiet side of Shipshewana, don’t go on a Wednesday, well, this was Wednesday and OMG, what a zoo! Traffic was backed up on all the roads, lots of buggies and horses driving down the side of the road and people everywhere particularly near the flea market area, it was totally nuts! We crept along the main road, inching forward a bit, then stopped for a bit, we weren’t in a particular hurry but this was taking forever! Finally we were able to turn into the entrance of the campground. In the office we were assigned to site #110 just a few sites down from our last stay.
After 5:00 p.m. in the hopes that the traffic had died down, we ventured out to drive a short distance to the Blue Gate Restaurant for dinner. It was interesting that as we pulled into the parking lot, across the street there were a number of buggies in a gas station. So we know horses produce gas (plenty of evidence along he sides of he road) but since when do they consume gas? LOL Well, it turned out there was a separate pump for kerosene so the buggy owners were all there to fill up their containers with that.
It was quite busy but when we gave our name, the hostess said it would probably be only about 15 minutes which it was. Once we were seated, our waiter recommended their signature fried chicken which is not something I would normally order but I decided to give it a try and the meat loaf which Rob ordered. Each came with two sides. Probably the best fried chicken I’ve ever had and Rob loved the meat loaf. And if that weren’t bad enough, since they are known for their home made pies, I’m not sure how we found room but we somehow managed to squeeze in we had a piece of chocolate pie (shouldn’t have done that). What a delicious meal!
After dinner, back at the campground, we spent the night relaxing or as much relaxing as we could do while doing a few loads of laundry.
When we made our appointment at Entegra, we had told Morgan, our service coordinator, to schedule A1A and Equalizer for anytime after 9:00 a.m. Well, about 7:30 a.m. Morgan called asking if A1A could come out to the coach (she thought we had stayed overnight in the parking lot). After I explained that we were in Shipshewana, she told A1A to come back at 8:30 a.m. which is when we expected to arrive at Entegra.
Then it was off to breakfast at the Essenhaus where we had their small scrambler dish. Very good as usual!
Lots of progress that day. A1A did an excellent job installing the second new cooktop cover and rebuffing the table (no swirls this time). Our new laundry doors were installed and looked good. Jamie from Equalizer replaced the control unit for our jacks. Because things still didn’t work quite right, he needed to come back on Friday. So we would once again get to spend the night on the coach in the parking lot!
It was another early day on Friday with lots happening. One of the guys from Equalizer was back to work on our jacks and while we were there, Entegra took care of a few other incidentals for us.
Since we had a light breakfast on Friday morning, in the midst of all the activity we went to lunch at the Rise N Roll. We both ordered different sandwiches and then shared. Rob had the Rise N Roll King (chicken, bacon, melted provolone on a bacon, onion & cheddar sub) and I had the Rise N Roll Specialty (whole grain wrap with turkey, bacon, colby cheese and ranch sauce). We both agreed the King sandwich was better.
By Friday at 2:00 p.m. everything was done and seemed to be in good working order. Knowing that it was the start of the 4th of July holiday week, we figured traffic would be heavy and we didn’t want to start heading back to RI that late in the day so we ended up back at Shipshewana South campground. This time we were assigned to site #42. We didn’t like this site – it seemed shorter (very little room to park the van), narrower and was on one of the main roads in the campground so cars and coaches were constantly going by. Plus it had a small tree near the picnic table, making it difficult to even put out our awning on the living side of the coach so there wasn’t much room outside. Initially we were only going to stay one night but we figured we could use a day of rest and the traffic might be lighter on Sunday so we stayed both Friday and Saturday nights.
On Saturday morning based on the recommendation of the woman at the registration desk at Shipshewana South, we went to the breakfast buffet for $7.99 at the Blue Gate. Not surprisingly after the delicious dinner we had a few days before, it was quite plentiful, reasonably priced and very good. After breakfast we went into some of the local shops. Lots of beautiful hand made goods, almost made me wish we still had a house so I could buy stuff for it! Stopped at the very crowded E & S Bulk food store where there were lots of buggies parked outside. Need to buy a 50 pound bag of flour, sugar, candy or some other food? And I thought BJ’s Wholesale, Sam’s Club and Costco had large quantities…nothing compared to this place. I would have liked to have taken some photos but with so many Amish inside, I didn’t want to offend anyone. Here and in several other shops, Rob was fascinated by the several varieties of popcorn available for sale – whoever heard of hull-less ladyfinger popcorn?
After that we headed over to the RV Hall of Fame & Museum in Elkhart which turned out to be pretty interesting. On display were photos, memorabilia, trailers, RV’s and tent trailers from the 1920’s to present day. They even had a 1931 Chevrolet House Car that was used to transport Mae West! Fun seeing the evolution of the camping industry over the years.
After spending several hours there, we headed back to the beast. We would be leaving the next day to head back to RI so we started to prep for our departure.
To view photos of Shipshewana as well as the RV Museum, click here.