May 14, 2011

RV Travel Day 13 -14 (May 11-12, 2011)

Day 13
Before arriving in Charlotte NC, we had trouble yesterday with the propane generator which is needed to cool the cabin when we leave the dogs for any length of time during this 90 degree weather. I called the repairman, as I indicated in my last post, and he ‘promised’ to come just after noon on May 11.

So we visited the Billy Graham Library in the morning.
This place is quite impressive with one of the best multimedia displays I’ve ever seen. Billy’s life and ministry are portrayed in a series of rooms with video and audio of very high quality.

Also a massive bookstore and dairy bar is available. What an amazing life he has led under God’s anointing. He has spoken in person with more people than any man in history with the consistent message of God’s love and salvation through Jesus Christ. This impeccably maintained place is well worth a visit in Charlotte and there is no admission charge for this high quality facility. Bessie will greet you at the entrance.

Arriving back at the RV park at noon, I received another ‘promise’ that Mark, the RV repairman would be here at 2:30.

We hung out and relaxed, but made the decision that we would leave at 4:00 pm for Asheville regardless. He didn’t show and didn’t call so we were in Asheville by 6:30 with little traffic enroute. Mr. Caudle is not reliable.

Day  14
We had ferocious thunderstorms last night, no wind or hail but heavy rain and continuous lightning and crashing thunder. Jesse is fearful of thunder so she does anything possible to huddle with one of us. Scuffer seems immune to the storms and sleeps right through.

Off to Biltmore this morning which is only 4 miles form the Bear Creek Campground. I purchased tickets online yesterday so we were all set upon arrival to pick up the tickets and drive to one of the many parking lots which are all served by squeaky clean air conditioned shuttle buses driven by ‘old’ men (They’re probably retired and Biltmore doesn’t have to pay benefits!). The stats on this place are mind-blowing. You can learn more here. There are 1800 employees, likely making it Asheville’s largest employer.

I could go on and on, but you really must visit it for yourself. Think Shelburne Farms (That Vanderbilt money was everywhere!) on steroids, but without magnificent Lake Champlain! The views at Shelburne Farms are more beautiful that at BIltmore, IMHO.

One reality that enabled the ‘largest home in America (250 rooms) to be occupied by the Vanderbilts and their guests in 1895 was the advent of electricity, it seems to me. Without it, the place would nave been more like a medieval castle than a 20th century home.

We had lunch in the Arbor Grill at the Antler Hill Village and Winery. I had one of the best burgers ever... made from Carolina bison and cooked to perfection. Yum! The wine shop is huge and the Biltmore label adorns many varieties, although I don’t know if it’s made at Biltmore or nor.

The generator worked fine while we visited the Biltmore house in the morning, but again would not start while at Antler Village. Arrrgh! We drove to an RV repaid shop a few miles away, but they could not fix it on the spot, so we’ll have to muddle through if the problems persist. The diagnosis is that maybe an oil pressure cutoff switch activates when the engine becomes hot and requires a long time to cool down. The generator may have to removed from the rig in order to fix it.

We did a bit of shopping at Wal-mart and now are settled in for the night. We plan to travel the Blue Ridge Parkway north tomorrow.
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