May 10 to 23, 2006 - Fall City (East of Seattle), WA

May 10th we drove the very familiar 107 miles from Poulsbo to Tall Chief RV Resort in Fall City, WA.  The last time we were in Tall Chief was in July 2005.  We got our favorite campsite since the place was only about 1/4 to 1/3 full:

The campsite should look familiar since it is the same one we stayed in April 2005 and June 2005.

The rhodys were in bloom all over:

This is a Red-breasted Sapsucker, we also saw a Spruce Grouse but didn't get a picture:

More rhodys and azaleas:

Our reason for staying here is this is the area we used to live in so our doctors, dentist, and vet are here along with friends and family.  We also have a storage unit in Woodinville.  Our plan for two weeks was to see all the doctors, dentist, and vet, visit as many friends and family as we could and handle errands and shopping before our summer trip to Alaska. 

We survived all the doctors, dentist, and vet visits.  All three of us (including Evita) could go to Alaska.

We enjoyed our visits with friends and family, though we were unable to get together with everyone we wanted to.

We had an early surprise in our visit, our motorhome lock broke while we were outside.  The lock just spun in place and didn't unlock the door so we couldn't get in without doing some damage to a window.  We called our roadside assistance and they had some trouble finding a locksmith, but finally succeeded.  The locksmith had to drill out the old lock and had some trouble installing a replacement since the holes in the door did not line up well, most likely causing the original failure.  Finally it was all working again and we were out some money.  The new lock, which doesn't quite fit right due to the way the internal holes lined up:

Visiting Elena on Mother's Day, the birds were doing well:

Meesha was doing well:

We finished getting all the old data off the old computer using a Compact Flash card reader, so the new computer is doing well:

The old computer now has its hard drive wiped so it is ready to move on.

Bill's mother was doing well and we all enjoyed the brunch at the Budd Bay Cafe in Olympia.  We also ran into a friend of Bill's he had known since sixth grade, who we hadn't seen since Bill's high school reunion in 2004. 

We went to Seattle to visit Cousin Peggy, Jim and MacLean and saw this place, only in Seattle:

Peggy, Jim, and MacLean's place

We did visit others, but didn't take pictures.

We also arranged to get new front tires on the motorhome.  The front tires were the smallest that the manufacturer could put on and they had to be inflated to 120psi and gave a rough ride where the road was rough.  Alaska and the roads in Canada have some rough roads, we decided to change to a larger tire.  Many others had already made the change, a few even got the manufacturer to pay for it or partially pay for it.  There is only one size larger that will fit the wheel wells and we arranged with Les Schwab Tire Center for the new tires.

The old tires, Michelin 275/70R22.5 LRJ XZA1's (we still have four of these on the rear axle where they work quite well):

The new tires, which even smell new, Michelin 275/80R22.5 LRH XZA3's which we can run at 105psi and have more flexible sidewalls than the XZA1's.

Hopefully the tire change will made our ride smoother, we have had some times where we wondered if our front TV was going to bounce out.  Others have been quite happy with the change.

We cleared things out of the motorhome we hoped to not need in Alaska, like many books we do not expect a chance to read on the trip, and put them in the storage unit.  We also put the bikes and bike carrier in the storage unit since we expect to not have many chances to ride them and they could get trashed on the trip from all the road grime.  This gave us space to put some spare items we were not sure we would easily find, plus some protective gear for the car and motorhome we expect to use on the way to Alaska and on the way back.

Our last day in town Nancie and Sandy took the ferry over and we met at XXX Drive-In in Issaquah since they love the place.  This is the last original XXX in existence and Bill was wondering what the fuss was about since he was not impressed with the one that used to be in North Bend, WA.  The one in Issaquah is way better than the one that used to be in North Bend, which had dry hamburgers.  The burgers in Issaquah were messy and wet and the root beer is quite good.  We enjoyed the food and the company.

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