Bangor's Good Samaritan


My father in an e-mail today made the obvious point: we are having as much trouble reaching Qu├ębec as Benedict Arnold did in 1775. I had sketched out our situation in a message to Steve Borsch, whose blog and podcast I follow, and he wrote back, "Dry camping in a truck stop heh? Life doesn't get any better than that! ;-)" Actually, it hasn't been so bad, living for a few days next to logging trailers, fire trucks, and all the other vehicles waiting for service at Whited Ford. My morning coffee and Mac work took place with the view in the photo above, a dreary but interesting scene, I thought. It's amazing how much more easily I can accept my surroundings when I've been to a couple of AA meetings after a long drought.

In any event, our luck changed today. Last night I left a pathetic e-mail for Don Wisewell, president of the Paul Bunyan Chapter of the Good Sam Club in the Bangor area, asking if he knew anyone who might be able to fix the slideout that had jammed in the out position, thus making it impossible for Whited to get the Southwind into the garage to install the new fuel pump, scheduled to arrive tomorrow. Don called my cell this morning, and I said we didn't need his help yet--I was worried about someone other than Ford working on the RV and voiding the warranty. He showed up at our door anyway, just to check in. Within minutes, he had crawled in under the motorhome and found the problem. With a pin from his truck, he had fixed it, and the slideout came all the way in, nice as can be. I was dumbounded and as grateful to another human being as I've felt in a long time. We had thought this slideout problem might take days to fix, and who knew how much money. Don refused my offer of reimbursement and wished us well on our trip. Good Sam, indeed.

So tonight we will spend our third night dry camping here. We're watching the water level and the tanks and decided it would be best to shower elsewhere. I'd noticed the Bangor Tennis Club just down the road, so we drove over their with our blue towels and asked if we could buy a couple of showers. Roger kindly offered us showers at no charge, and we emerged clean and grateful again. Tonight we're headed to the Penobscott Theater in Bangor to see a preview of a musical, "Falsettos," which looked good, and why not? Claire will stay in the Southwind, protecting it from intruders.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006


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