Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Irishman shingling his roof

One of the earliest stories/parables I recall father telling me is the story of the Irishman who never could get the leak in his roof patched because, when it was leaking it was raining and he couldn't patch it in the rain and when it wasn't raining it didn't leak so didn't need patching. I feel the same way about the ProHeat - it quit working reliably when we got to Regina and was generally a real PITA the rest of the trip but I didn't want to tackle trying to fix it because it was too bloody cold. Now it would be easy to tear it apart but its 27 above outside so its hard to get too excited about needing heat.

This morning I got the fresh water tank filled. One of the cool features of the bus is that it has a 20 gallon drinking water tank in addition to the main coach water tank. We have always thought that when we got down here we would refill that tank from purified water. I rigged up plumbing years ago to let me do that but had never needed to use it until today. Roberto sells purified water from his plant here in the trailer park so this morning I started packing bottled water to the bus and pumping it into the tank.

I walked out the door this morning and met Salvatore walking up to the bus. Salvatore makes his living in the winter by buying fish at Huatabampito, about 50 miles from here and reselling it in Alamos. We have got to know him and his family over the years and have visited their house. We recognized each other immediately - he hadn't seen the bus before of course. His business has a new innovation. Previously his equipment consisted of a cooler with a rope around the middle. He would get off the bus from Huatabampo, heft the cooler up on his back, hang onto the rope and head out across town. Now he has a two wheeled cart that someone gave him to carry the cooler on & it makes a huge difference for him.

We had a great visit over coffee and blueberry muffins this morning. One of his brothers is currently working in Canada and he would like to investigate that possibility. He does OK for work in the winter when the gringos are here but I think life is pretty hard in the summer. We're going out to visit the family again a week from Sunday - before then I will do some research to see what the requirements are for him to get a work visa to Canada. I tried to discourage him as I did for Elsira and Sergio but it is hard for them to understand that things aren't perfect in Canada. The economy is really gathering steam down here & I think the real opportunities over the next decade will be here rather than in the US & Canada but they don't see it that way.

I gave up on the bus ever settling down on the stoppers yesterday & bled the air off the airbags. One side had gone down but the other side was still holding air and we were getting tired of sleeping uphill. I'm going to have to either put in a compressor to keep the bags up or put in an easy way to bleed the air off and let it go down everytime we stop. Its nice having it down because it is lower to get in and out of but we need some way to get it down quickly and evenly. We're really level here - once we get all four corners down - so I am going to install some levels that I have been carrying around for years. It will be nice to pull into a site and know immediately whether we are even close to level before I get out of the seat.

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