We woke up early and ate breakfast on the road. Greg found the Starbucks in Couer d'Alene (proving his deep love for me!).
We also found Erickson's RV Supply -- a used RV parts place. Greg had found them on the internet and planned that we would stop in there. We found a lot of parts and bits and pieces that would work on the FMC. They had two of the original cooktop/stoves for our beloved coaches. Greg and I are planning to restore ours because the cooktop and stove were replaced with a cooktop and microwave. And, while the microwave can come in handy, we dry camp (meaning no hookups so no outside electricity) too often and then it's just a big, expensive cabinet. Besides, I have no way to bake cookies while we're on the road! We are still checking out options for that "upgrade" but we ensured that they would indeed ship it to us if we called them in a couple of months! :)
We continued on our way into Spokane. I haven't mentioned another problem that appeared on our drive from Billings to Coeur d'Alene . . . we had sprung a small but noticeable differential leak. The noticeable part came from the vast amounts of oily fluid all over my car and the back of the motorhome. We decided we couldn't ignore it so we started calling repair places. They all agreed how they could do it . . . in a week! Not! There was a place in downtown Spokane that Greg wanted to try. They said they could take a look at it so we headed on over there (Have I mentioned how glad we are we splurged and got a Garmin GPS right before the trip? We have her speak to us with a British accent and we call her Serena!)
Ray's Truck Service is a great business and I highly recommend it to all our friends who live or travel through Spokane!!! First of all, it is a 3rd generation business. Second of all, they have completely redone their building and facilities and they are clean, stylish, and very welcoming. They suggested we go get lunch while we waited. We also intended to hunt down a car wash so we could clean the oil off the Suzuki and hopefully bring the FMC back when we were done. We ended up having lunch at Frank's Diner -- a Spokane landmark. The food was fantastic and the atmosphere (an old private rail car) was totally fun! It wasn't cheap but it was good. We washed the car which was fun for the whole family! And, headed back to Ray's.
They weren't quite ready for us so we plunked down in their air-conditioned waiting room where the kids played with the dog (an adorable King Charles spaniel) and we waited. Finally, the owner came out -- we thought to tell us what was wrong and how long it would take to fix it -- instead, he handed Greg the keys and said it was done. Greg can explain all the nitty gritty but the gist of it is that there is an o-ring and where it was supposed to be seated was bent. They straightened it out, put in a new o ring and we're good to go. The guy seemed surprised that the part got bent and Greg asked him if it was possibly damaged during a bad towing experience -- are you surprised that he said, "Absolutely!" No, we weren't either.
Still, it was just about 1pm and we were off . . . to wash the motorhome . . . another family fun experience! You can get pretty wet washing a motorhome in a car wash place!!!
We started driving west. We didn't think we'd make it to Seattle so I called the KOA in Kent and told them we were getting a late start. They were very nice and moved our reservation by a day so we didn't lose our deposit. We drove until we got grumpy and hungry which happened around Ellensburg, WA. It's a nice little town along the Yakima River and totally geared towards serving the needs of travelers . . . in cars. There were no restaurants that we could park the motorhome at so we ended up at a more expensive place than we'd planned. It was good meal though. We decided to call it a day and stayed at the KOA there. It was nice but not wonderful. It was a pretty setting though along the river and we all got showered up and slept well!
Day 25 Coeur d'Alene, ID to Ellensburg, WA July 6, Tuesday
Woke up early and headed out. Found breakfast at Starbuck's in Cd'A. Went to Erickson's RV -- a used RV supply place. We bought a couple of fans and they have the stove we need for the FMC. They also had the bed frames we think might work for fixing up the bed area to work better for us. We had the leaking differential valve fixed at Ray's Truck Service. Can't say enough nice things about them. Lunch at Frank's Diner in Spokane. We washed the car and the motorhome at a Brown Bear Car Wash -- totally fun and boy did they look better!Dinner in Ellensburg. Stayed at KOA.