Posted on May 16th, 2016 by David.B
So, we have been asked more than once about what do you do when you need a hospital for surgery when on the road? Well, that is kind of simple, you find one! In this case Brenda needed to have back surgery, spinal fusion due to a degenerative disk at L1 that was just getting worse, and we had a choice to make, do we find a doctor and hospital where we were, or could it wait? Well, thankfully, we could wait. (Though it did mean that Brenda would be in some pain for some time.)
Why wait? Simple…Family. Seeing we were heading back to the Rochester, NY, which is where we are from, we would have family and friends around if needed. It is always good to have a support group if you can. We also wanted to go to Strong Memorial Hospital where we would be able to work with Dr. Robert Molinari who is one of the top surgeons in this field having done many studies and papers on the procedure as well as working with our military with back injuries.
So here I sit at Strong Hospital with Brenda currently in surgery. What am I going writing this? Again, simple. I need to not just sit here wondering and waiting, and waiting, and waiting for the phone to ring. Time surely does seem to move slower when you wait on something like this.
So back to what to do on the road. Well, if you have the choice, you surly can do what we did and move your coach where you may have family or friends for support. If you can’t, then you just need to make the best of it and be sure to notify the RV park you may be at in case you may need to stay longer. You will also find that RV’ers are great people, and they are, and you may find yourself with support you did not expect. This is what happened to us when I needed surgery, two in fact, for kidney stones. Because this came out of nowhere, we had no choice but to stay and get things handled. The KOA we were at was just great and not only extended our stay, but also asked the RV’er that was due to come into our spot if they would mind being on another site so we did not need to move the coach. We then later found ourselves being told not to cook dinner a few nights in a row as others pitched in to help. We did not know any of these people. And to think, this was over a kidney stone. (Then again, I did live with a stent in me for over a week with the 6mm stone still in me…boy that was some week.) So campgrounds can be very helpful and RV’ers, as we have said before, are just great people.
But anyway. You also need to be sure you have insurance that will cover you wherever you may be. This is very important to check into as not all insurance allows for “out of the area” coverage and not all hospitals take all insurance. So having an insurance that is well known and can be used across the country is very important if you choose to travel. So be sure to check your coverages before you start out or you just could find yourself in a bind. BTW…Their is also a service called SkyMed that will not only transport you to where you want to go for hospital service, but also transport your RV and even your pets. It may just be the piece of mind you need.
Brenda was all good when I left her, she was ready to get this over with and hopefully live again without pain all the time. I hated seeing her like that. She did not let on, she hid it well, but it was killing me knowing she was living with pain for over a year. (We needed to try all other treatments on pain relief for her back before we went with surgery as that is always a last resort.) So knowing this was coming, we made plan before we arrived back into Rochester. We had all the appointments set up, we got things done and out of the way that we needed to, and was able to get the surgery set to go. Knowing where you will be going greatly helps to be able to set things up, so again, if something can wait, at least you can make plans. So keep that in mind.
So I sit and wait. Thinking. Hoping. Loving. For my wonderful wife who has taken such care of me over and over again now is going through something that I know she waited, but also is scared of. You see, Brenda has never been in the hospital for herself before. (Ok, she had he tonsils out at 10.) So, saying she is a little nervous would be an understatement. I however, well, ok, I will admit it, am a wreck. However I can only say this…DO NOT WATCH YOUTUBE VIDEOS ON OPERATIONS! Brenda looked it up and we watched what she was going to have done. She thought is was fascinating. I however just seen what they would be doing to her and that was a mistake for me.
As I write this I am wondering if she will be mad at me for posting this. (Especially with a photo) But then again, I am sure she would know this was my way of trying to cope. Trying to keep my mind busy. Trying to make the time just go a little faster. I hope you found this information useful, even if it was self-serving therapy.
Love you babe. Please be ok.
UPDATE: Doctor came down and talked with me at about 10:45 and said it was textbook. Which is really good seeing he wrote part of it. All went very well and he gives her 90% chance of full recovery. She will be in pain for some time, but that will be from the sugary and not the pinched nerve and rubbing bone. So…Now I wait to be able to see her. (Time is so relative to us mere mortals. It can seem so or fast but it really never changes.)
Side Note: The waiting room receptionist came up to me after the doctor stopped by and said “You must be special.” I asked why she would say that. She replied. “Dr. Robert Molinari does not come down to talk to family directly that I have seen. So, Who are you? Are you someone I should have heard of?” I just smiled and said “No, not me, my wife.” and left it at that. (I actually think it may be due to either she has never seen him or our work with Seg4Vets seeing he also does work for our wounded warriors.)
Posted on April 30th, 2016 by David.B
Well the time has finally come to reveal what we have been working on for some time now for our fellow Tiffin motorhome owners or soon to be owners. CoachProxy!
CoachProxy is a simple, intelligent interface for operating your coach from any web browser, whether that’s your Phone, Tablet or Computer and is capable of doing this from anywhere you may be, on any number of devices! Items such as lights, shades, heated floors, and vents to name a few. It can also alert you to things such as your tank levels getting to high or maybe your batteries too low.
CoachProxy was developed along with our friends Michael and Lehnanne Kidd from TurdleHerding.com. They are fellow full-timers who own a new 2016 45OP Allegro Bus. We have spent over a year on this idea and are so excited to bring it to you as it is something that we felt was missing from such a wonderful motorhome coach line.
We set out to develop a product that fills this need at a low price point that was quick and simple. We do not pretend to be like systems you may have seen in other motorhomes, nor did we ever set out to be. While we surely would love to be able to take control of everything, we can only control what is on the Spyder Controls Multiplex System in the 2014 and newer Tiffin Motorhomes.
I will not get too much into it here as we have developed an entire site where you can find information on it. We even have a quick video that was shot, in typical David and Brenda style, on a whim with Michael and David. You know, it was one of those…”Hey, lets make a video” and Brenda grabbed the camera and we were off without a script or even knowing where we would go with it. All in all, it was something fun to do while at the Tiffin Service Center.
We hope you like CoachProxy and that you may care to have one of your own. Even if you don’t, we surely hope you will share this with other Tiffin owners by any means you may have. Be if Facebook, Twitter, community forums, email, US Mail (yeah right), or even around a campfire as you pull out your phone and say…”Hey, watch this!” as you light up your coach.
The video is on the site, but of course we would not be us unless we posted it here…
Posted on April 22nd, 2016 by Brenda.B
Just wanted to say that we are sorry to keep you hanging on the announcement we want to make and what the item is we want to reveal for Tiffin owners. We had hoped to make the revel a week after the post, but here we are on the 22nd and not a word. Nothing. Nadda.
You can be assured we are still here. Michael and David are very hard at work with the website for the reveal and on the little box itself. However, alas, it taking longer to do both seeing that both Michael and David also have the normal work that either may do.
Heck, David and I have not really had much to post about lately. We are back at Southwoods RV Resort and making sure the Wi-Fi is ready for this seasons guests. (See our live camera page for a live view of our site. You may even catch us outside as the camera faces the main view of the coach.)
Be assured we really, really, want to, announce what we have been working on for over a year. It is killing us. But we can not until we have things in place as we know what will happen right from day one.
What can we say now? Well, Michael has written a lot of lines of code. Decoded signals that the coach is sending all the time. And is fine tuning the product named….oh wait…almost slipped. David has been working on the site, the business side of things, and actually talking to other companies and manufacturers already. All in all, exciting times.
But things are close and I the guys will only let me leave you with this image…
…and also to point out that Whisper is also SO TIRED of the Wi-Fi stuff. First all the parks and now….hummm…I have to stop typing again before I say too much.
Posted on April 9th, 2016 by David.B
Oh my, what is Whisper so excited about with what is going on behind him? What are these two guys doing? Why are they smiling so much? Why are they so out of focus? (Oh, wait, that’s the wine making for that issue.) Ok, so maybe Whisper is more annoyed that we are keeping him up as the action in the background seems like it may be out of control or something. (Again…the wine.) But really, what is going on in the background and what is David holding that makes for all the smiles?
These are questions that will soon be answered that should make a lot of 2014 or newer Tiffin owners very happy. It has been over a year in development and Michael Kidd (http://turtleherding.com) and David, both techies, are very excited to be revealing all the work very soon. So, what is it? What can it be? Let’s just say, stay tuned and be ready to control yourself when the time comes.
Posted on March 17th, 2016 by David.B
Well, well, well, can you believe we have now lived full time in our 45LP Tiffin Allegro Bus for two years? Boy has the time gone quickly and we can only think that is because we have been having a great time traveling and making new friends along the way.
The coach has treated us great and we so enjoy the 45LP floor plan. We do like some of the tech changes Tiffin as put into the newer coaches, like more use of the Spyder control system to control things such as vents, blinds, additional lighting, and even the floors. It would be nice to have those as such things are lacking in our 2014 model and they sure would be nice. But it is interesting to us that even though a few other floor plans that have come out after the 45LP model, we would still, at this time, choose the 45LP floor plan for our needs if we decided on a new coach.
Without all the typing needed to talk about some of our thoughts, etc of the second year living in our coach and what we have been up to, we made another video where we sit down and chat with you about it. Ok, yes, it’s a one way conversation, so not so much a “chat” with “you”. However if you watch it a few times and take notes, you could always play it back and right before we say something or go on to a new topic, you can pause it and ask us a question and pretend we are answering it when you continue the playback.
If you care to re-live or play catch-up on our past videos on this subject, we have those available for you too.
Here is the blog post and videos of our Tiffin Allegro Bus 45LP complete time lapse video of build, tips on having a coach built and our walk through video which all can be found here.
Then we did a one year video on our thoughts of living in our coach for the first year. This can be found here.
And if you are all caught up and don’t care to re-live the past, then here is our video on our second year living on the road full time in our Tiffin Allegro Bus model 45LP. (3rd year in all living full time in a coach.)
Posted on March 2nd, 2016 by Brenda.B
Sorry there has not been any postings lately. We are currently parked at North Texas Jellystone RV Resort in Burleson, TX, just south of Fort Worth. We’ve been here over a month now as David has been working non-stop on improving this park’s WiFi system.
You see, a friend of ours owns this park and asked for David’s help in expanding his WiFi system. Well, that simple expansion has turned into a complete rip out and re-build of a new and improved WiFi system. The old system was just that….old. So in order to support all the traffic and a new fiber line coming into the park, a whole new system had to be built in its place.
David explains that whenever you put in a WiFi system in an rv park it’s always a “Best Effort” install. You see, it can never be 100% for everyone all the time. You have to remember that rv parks are always in flux. There are rv’s coming and going all the time.
So you may be just fine connecting to the local campground’s WiFi system one day but then you may get a new neighbor and all of a sudden you have half the signal or none at all. It could be how they are parked and the signal could be bouncing off their coach now. It could be where you physically are inside your particular rv, by a window vs behind a wall. It could be that their camper is made of aluminum and therefore blocking anything coming to you. WiFi signals do not pass through aluminum.
Keep in mind also that your signal, strength or speed is also dependent on what the rv park has coming into their park. Some may not have enough speed to adequately support all the users that are connected. We’ve been in some parks where just their location is a hindrance on how much speed they can get, such as this North Texas Jellystone. They are located just 15 minutes south of Fort Worth, TX and you would expect them to have every resource available but this was just not the case. They fell just outside the install zone for the AT&T fiber until now. They could not even get cable tv here, therefore no cable modems. Their only option up until now has been AT&T U-verse. Unfortunately bad WiFi is the norm throughout the entire US. If the park that you are at has decent WiFi, count yourself lucky.
If they have limited WiFi in certain areas of the park, well, David came up with a solution for that too. You can build yourself an antenna to help bring in the signal to your rv and create your own private WiFi within your rv, for under $100. Here’s the post that David did on that and a step-by-step tutorial on setting it all up yourself. I was able to follow David’s instructions on the video and set one up myself. So I know if I can do it, anyone else should be able to. This will not increase your speed, just help bring the signal inside your rv so that you can connect easier.
So with over 70 access points and bridges from Ubiquiti, fiber coming into the park, a heavy duty Cisco Systems Router and a dedicated server, this system should be great by the time David’s done with it.
Sorry to say, I can be of no help what so ever. David was able to bring in a friend that is a programmer and he has helped a lot. We really appreciate Michael and his wife for coming into the park for a couple weeks to help out on this install.
Whisper of course is no help. He falls asleep all the time on the antennas that David is trying to program. He and BK have been enjoying the Texas sun though. Come on….you knew I had to get a kitty picture in here somewhere :)
After long days of programming this does help.
David’s put in some very long hours. Typically starting at 8 in the morning or so and working until well past 9 at night. I’ve learned to plan out meals so they can be eaten without much effort. There has been a few times we’ve been able to go out and enjoy a restaurant, but then it’s right back to work. I feel bad that I cannot help in any way. I guess just making sure he’s eating and drinking something will have to do.
So, we are still here in Texas. We were planning on only being here for a couple weeks as this was just going to be adding a couple more antennas for an expansion. We do have to be at another rv park in Panama City Beach, FL for another expansion of their WiFi that David worked on last year. We’ve delayed them a little bit so hopefully we will be back on the road soon and headed to Florida.
This has really turned into quite some projects across the country. I think I need to start telling David that maybe he should start charging for this. Yes, he does this for free, just to help out the mom and pop parks and friends.
So sorry it’s been so long for another blog posting. Not much in the way of action has been going on here. Programming, programming and more programming. Oh what fun!