If you’re reading this, I’m lost

After leaving Meteor Crater Park (post coming soon), we headed to Vegas Baby!
Every year the AwesomeSauce Duo go to the World Series of Poker, held at the Rio in Las Vegas. This year would be no different. Well, a little different. We were bringing our house, belongings, and the Mews team with!

We prepared for the heat (we thought). We had tested, and retested the “house” air conditioning. We had it inspected by professionals. We bought a secondary floor unit for when we were plugged in. We had been making ice for days.
At the KOA at Sam’s Town, we plugged in and cranked it up.

Then the circuits blew.

Then they blew again.

Then the Mews started to melt.

After trying everything, and calling everyone in the city, we decided it was safer to put us and the Team up in a hotel. The Mews are too important to be left in the heat.

We were told by the hotel casino security to park our beloved RV in the oversize parking lot. There are cameras, lights, and security checks the lot periodically, so we felt sort of ok leaving our home there. We took some clothes, our cash, our Team, and checked in.

We checked on it Friday. We checked on it Saturday. We checked on it Sunday.

Our home was stolen on Monday.

It was stolen from the parking lot at 10:45am on Monday, June 27th.

It is white with blue trim, with two large logos. Our family crest on the back that says “AwesomeSauce Duo” with cats, bacon, playing cards, etc. The other large sticker is the link to our website on the drivers side, http://www.AwesomeSauceAdventure.com

We filed reports with Bally’s and Metro PD.

Everything we owned (basically) was in the motorhome.

One of the things that hurts the most was we were  transporting  seven urns. My (Saucy G) great grandparents, my grandparents, my mother, my father in law (Awesome Ks dad) and our cat, former Head of Security, Secret Agent Sam.

The remains of Saucy Gs family were left to her to spread their ashes in Reno and Catalina, CA. All we really want are the urns back. They mean a lot to us.

There was a lot of other stuff, too, but we know that recovery of that is less than likely. The fishing gear that belonged to Saucy G that had so much sentimental value. The book of crushed pennies the Duo was collecting at each stop. The books. The photos. The dvds, games. The travel scrapbook. The hand made quilt and blanket, the AwesomeSauce pillow that were wedding presents. Everything.

Not only did someone steal our home, and our relatives remains, they crushed us emotionally. We had just started this incredible adventure after years of planning, saving, and dreaming. We are devastated.

We are trying to keep our sense of humor, though. We are ok. The Mews are ok.

In addition to our home, they took the Smart Car trailer that was attached to the back.

If you happen to see a motor home with large AwesomeSauce stickers, Colorado Plate MQT-304, please contact Metro police and reference event number 16 0628-2051. Telephone 702-828-3204

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Thank you so much for your time, and any help would be greatly appreciated.

TL:DR, Motorhome/house and trailer were stolen. Giant AwesomeSauce Duo sticker on the back. Please call police if spotted.

Are you Ready?

3…

2…

1…

LAUNCH!

AND THEY ARE OFF!
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Yup, we did it. We finally hit the road! With a lot of help from our friends and family, of course. We were very fortunate to have Mama AwesomeSauce, Michael the Painter, and Sir Christopher Knight and Mews Guard of House Fluffington to see us off. We cracked a bottle of champagne (we would have broken it over the hull, but we were scared of what that would do to the engine, and tires, and street, and what nots), toasted to our travels, then the AwesomeSauce Duo and Mews HIT THE ROAD! It was a tearful farewell…so many emotions! Sad to say goodbye – Saucy G has lived in Colorado her whole life! Scared of what was ahead (terrified, if truth be told). Excited to finally be on the road after years of planning and hoping and saving and and and…

We pulled ourselves together, and headed west! Our first stop? The KOA at Cripple Creek, Colorado. I know, not very far for our maiden voyage, however we had a few reasons for the semi-close to home stop. We wanted to make sure our first day of driving wasn’t too long and strenuous for us, and mostly for the Mews. We wanted to see how the A’Tuin would handle the road, and we wanted to be able to test out all of our hoses, connections and everything else in a park that was sort of familiar. We have never been to a KOA before, but we had been to Cripple Creek, so if something went horribly wrong, at least we would be in familiar surroundings, and close enough to “home” that if the rig blew up we could get back ok. It was sort of a security blanket stop, as well as a test run before we “got serious” and left the state.

Boy are we glad we did! We didn’t have any major disasters, thank goodness, but that first day was a learning experience! First, just because it looks cute while you are parked does NOT mean that the decorations or whatevers you have are practical while driving. Items shift while in transit (we should have listened during all the in flight safety talks), and those items WILL find a way to the floor. Or will move to against the door of the cabinet, like a booby trap in a kids Christmas movie.
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Adventure Tip– Secure ALL THE THINGS. Seriously stuff will move around.

Secondly, no matter how much you plan, and prepare, something will go wrong and/or possibly break. We made sure we had solar for when we weren’t plugged in, we checked our roof, we made places for Mews to sleep and hide, we had two different inspections on the rig itself JUST to make sure everything was ready to go. Feeling smug and secure, we plugged into our first ever site, got the water and electricity going, and settled into a “normal” house. We washed our hands, a lot, we cooked in our fancy new cookware (this stuff is truly amazing, more on that later), and we did dishes.

Then…it happened. Like a scene out of a horror movie. It crept. It slowly seeped its way into the kitchen. The unsuspecting couple, minding their own business, living life unawares of the threat that lurked around the corner….

A LEAK!
https://www.instagram.com/p/BGueLRGtAbH/
WHERE?! WHAT! WHY?! Where was the water coming from? What is going on? Why won’t it stop? AHHHHH!

We quickly shut everything off, sopped up what we could get to, then went hunting for the Moist Menace. We ended up ripping out part of our cabinet under the sink to get to the problem. It was HORRIFYING! There is was. A HUGE CRACK in our drain pipe going to our grey tank. HUGE. How did it get there? Was it from winterization? Perhaps when the big box company was installing the new toilet, they cut the pipe without noticing? Or goblins snuck into the rig and sliced the pipe, just for a laugh (I KNEW I should have burnt some sage before we left). Whatever the cause, there it was. Now the kitchen sink and the bathroom sink were inoperable until we get it fixed.

Worry not! We didn’t let this get us down. Until we can fix it, or get it fixed, we have come up with a solution. Tubs! There are three tubs, one for each sink. When we wash dishes we have a soap tub, and a rinse tub. There is one it the bathroom for catching water, also. Luckily the shower seems to have its own drain into the grey tank, so we end up emptying our tubs into the shower after use.

After that frighten, we checked every other connection we could find! Pipes, hoses, (almost) everything.

Again, we missed a spot. Later, when we were leaving our second KOA stop, we, well, couldn’t leave. The engine wouldn’t start! OH NO! DISASTER! Where do we get a new battery? Is it the battery? Is it the alternator? Is it some deep engine problem that Saucy G knows nothing about? AHHHHHHH!
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Nope. It was a loose connection on the battery. A VERY nice man at the Santa Fe KOA (our second stop) found the problem, tightened the connection, jumped our battery, and sent us on our way.

SO, as the old saying goes, something something mice and men, planning…and…err…um….

You and never plan for everything ever, because something will come up. Turns out this Full Time Lifestyle has a whole new way of life to learn! So many new things, new problems, new solutions, new new new! Who knew?! The best part is that it is all worth it. The leaks, the creaks, the battery, all of it are worth it for the adventures.

Speaking of…

Are you Ready for an Adventure?

T Minus 13 Hours

Here we are.

Sitting in an (almost) empty house. The Worlds Greatest RV, Trailer, and Smart Car are on the street, (almost) ready to go.

It is such a strange feeling! Being so ready to hit the road we could burst, while at the same time being so terrified we could feel sick. Terror, Jubilation, Anxiety, Excitement! It’s such a mix of emotions!

Tomorrow is it. We hit the road. Two people, three cats, probably too much stuff, and a lot of hope. Hope that the adventure is as amazing as we have been dreaming it could be. Hope that the engine doesn’t fall out of the RV. Hope that the cats don’t explode. Hope that we can actually do this. Thankfully we have found some AMAZING people on forums, which have given us  a lot of encouragement. That, and the planning planning planning, we should at least last a week or two. Probably longer. Hopefully a lot longer.

Matilda Pants and Archer Funnyfoot couldn’t be more ready. Matilda has been planning this adventure for years, and she can’t wait to get it started. Archer just wants to go where Awesome K goes. Lana, on the other hand, is nonplussed. I have a feeling Awesome K and I won’t be sleeping tonight. In a lot of ways, this is the night before Christmas. You know you should sleep, but you can’t because tomorrow is filled with wonder and delight, and you can’t wait to see it.

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So. For now we will get ourselves ready for the morning, and try to get some sleep tonight.

T Minus 13 Hours to Launch.

 

Frustrations and Fears

This whole “let’s buy an RV and hit the road for the adventure of a lifetime” thing has been quite the undertaking. I mean, duh, right? It’s a total 180 from the life we’ve been living; a lifestyle change from top to bottom. But, man, nobody can prepare you for what you actually go through.

The Plan:

  1. Buy an RV
  2. Remodel RV to our liking
  3. Hit the road

Seems pretty simple, right? Here’s how it actually went down:

  1. Buy an RV. Oh, you mean this RV? Well, this one doesn’t actually have an engine that works, but it’s right in your price range. How about this one? It has 150,000 miles and the oil’s never been changed. This one? It’s seven feet shorter than what you want. That one? That’s a van. How about over there? It’s the right length, has the right mileage, but it’s double what you want to spend. And this one? It’s got a leaky roof, but the toilet works like a charm. Fine, what about that one? The dinette was replaced by a bunk bed made for a 4-year old, every nook and cranny is filled with moth balls that have been there for two months, the dome over the shower isn’t finished, and the back-up camera has been removed. Perfect, we’ll take it!
  2. Remodel RV to our liking. Sure, not a problem we’ll just get you on the schedule and the work should be done in about two days. Oh, wait, sorry, I meant to say two plus two plus two days. There are your solar panels and there are your new batteries and they’re hooked up to the inverter and the watts and the amps and the volts should all work, okay, see you, bye. Was that English? The interior painting you want done? Well, because the other work took two plus two plus two days, the painting will have to be rescheduled, and now it’ll take four days instead of three. Okay, that’s fine, we’ll just do some light handy work in the meantime. I mean, no we won’t because we don’t know what we want to do until we start moving in and we can’t start moving in until the painting is done.
  3. Fine, fine. Let’s investigate alternate modes of transportation so we don’t have to drive the rig into major metropolitan areas. Bikes! Won’t it be wonderful to be able to bike the trails in Yellowstone? We can put a basket on the front for groceries. What if we want to drive Going-To-The-Sun Road? It’s 50 miles and two lanes. How about a scooter? Do they have two person scooters? Not in your price range. Do they have trailers for scooters? They’re all too heavy. Besides, what if it’s raining and we have to go to the store? Alright, let’s look at cars. Too big, too heavy. SmartCar! You really don’t want to pull that behind with all four wheels on the ground. You really don’t want to tow that with only two wheels on the ground. Let’s get a trailer! Sure, you can get a trailer made for a SmartCar…if you live in Europe. Found one! Yes, we custom made this trailer for a SmartCar, but we didn’t put any d-rings on it for tire straps, but you should be able to just drill a hole and install them yourself. Oh, and we used a 7-pin plug on this and you’ll need a brake controller.
  4. The painting is done and looks amazing! Sweet, lets start moving in. Well, now that you need to get the hitch on your rig re-wired, maybe you don’t move all the way in, because where will you sleep?
  5. Cool, let’s start figuring out how things work. Look, RV forums on the interwebs! We’re saved! “Make sure you have some water in your black tank so sticky stuff doesn’t stay sticky.” Ok, how much water should we put in our black tank? “Make sure you have some water in your black tank so sticky stuff doesn’t stay sticky.” Thanks, we got that part, but how much water? A cup? A gallon? Should we just leave the hose permanently attached? “Make sure you have some water in your black-” Never mind! How about pets? Do any of you have pets and utilize pet tracking devices? “I can’t condone you letting your pets run about freely outside, especially since they’re cats.” We aren’t thinking of letting them run about freely outside. “Because if you let them out they could get eaten by predators.” We know, we’re thinking about tracking devices JUST IN CASE they happen to get outside. Do you have any suggestions? “Oh, I don’t have any pets.”
  6. Uh-oh, our permit for parking on the street is about to expire. Let me just email and ask for an extension. No response. I’ll call and talk to the guy. Voicemail. Voicemail. Voicemail.
  7. Hit the road. Results pending…..

And now here we are. We were supposed to leave today. We were moments away from starting this adventure. But moments have turned into more moments which have snowballed into more moments. These aren’t the moments we were looking for.

We want sunrises through the trees and sunsets over an ocean. We want roadside attractions and festivals and Christmas on a beach. We’re pretty sure we’ll get there. I mean, we’ve sold a condo and bought an RV, so what choice do we have? We knew going into this there would be frustrations, but we also thought we’d encounter them on the road, not while sitting in a living room staring at our rig that’s parked on the street.

Deep breath. Everything will be okay. And if something goes wrong, we’ll deal with it. Because that’s what we’ve so far and that’s what we’ll continue to do.

And THAT is part of the adventure.

 

That time we changed our lives

As previously mentioned, we bought an RV.

Not just any RV, but the GREATEST RV IN ALL THE WORLD!

Ok, well, maybe not, but it is to us.

How did we end up with the Greatest RV in ALL THE WORLD? Well, it wasn’t easy. We (Awesome K and I), had to change a lot of things in our lives, so that we could change our entire lives. We sold off everything we owned – which is actually a lot harder than people would lead you to believe. I found I had an emotional attachment to a lot of things. THINGS. I had to keep telling myself that these were just things. The Grandfather clock was NOT my Grandfather, and letting it go didn’t mean I was letting him go. Just sending the clock off to a better home. These things, while wonderful, were just things.

Now, to be clear, there are some things that we are keeping forever, because they cannot be replaced. I have a family chair that a relative rode to the New World on, Awesome K as medals that his father earned in Vietnam, and we have a TON of pictures and other things we are hanging onto. Mostly everything else, though, was sold! Or donated! Soooooo much stuff was donated. It is really eye opening and shocking to see just how much STUFF gets accumulated, and how most of it you don’t need. Ever.

Just Un-Stuffing was a huge change, and a huge relief in a lot of ways. I still find myself wanting stuff, just to have it. It’s a major life change to get out of the shopping, wanting, having lifestyle! There is always some new thing I think I can’t live without, before I snap back into realizing that I don’t, and that it won’t fit. That, for me, has been one of the biggest things that has changed. “Will this even fit in the RV?” No. It won’t. Whatever it is. You know why? There is only about 180sqft to work with.

Selling everything we ever owned wasn’t enough to get an RV, but it was a start. Another thing we did was we registered for one for our wedding. Instead of pots and pans, napkin holders, a blender, and all the other things new couples register for, we opted for something different. We already had all that stuff (and soon we would be getting rid of a lot of it), so we started a wedding registry for the things we really needed, an RV Registry! We went to Honeyfund.com, and were able to quickly and easily create a registry that was perfect for us: http://www.honeyfund.com/wedding/kevinandgen

So when we say we wouldn’t have gotten the RV without help from our friends and family, we mean it! We were very lucky to get many “gifts” that helped us toward our eventual RV purchase.

Finally we had one last thing to sell. Our condo. Luckily, the housing market in Colorado is CRAZY, and it took less than 24hours to get an offer. Talk about stressful, though! Selling your home is one thing, selling your home to move into an RV is another thing totally. It’s madness! IT’S SPARTA! Oh…wait…that’s something else. (pic - Story) Persian Wars - This is Sparta

In addition to saving all the pennies we had, we got very lucky in a lot of ways, through selling the condo, a LOT of help, and good ol’ fashioned determination.

Now what do we do? What are we doing? What is going on?!

First off, we are making some upgrades and renovations to the RV. While she is the Greatest RV in the World, we are out to make her a little bit greater. We are adding a full solar upgrade, so that we can truly “live off the grid,” and still have power. We are also making sure we have a tire pressure monitoring system, because driving with ten tires is bananas. We also plan to trade in our car for a much, much smaller version. I REALLY want a Smart Car, but we’ll see how that goes. We are also going to paint, make places for cats to hide, add some flavor, and maybe a decal or two. You know, make it ours. We are going to be living in it, after all.

Wait. What? Living in it? Like. All the time? This is the number one reaction we have been getting. When we tell anyone that we are going to hit the road in a super sweet RV, everyone sort of assumes it’s for the weekend, or for when we can. They ask what we are going to go do, and when we tell them everything, we often get a “deer-in-the-headlights” expression. This is so outside the norm that it literally does not compute.

error error does not compute

That is what we are doing. We are becoming “full timers.” We are moving into a 31ft Class C RV, and will live in it full time. When I say we, I mean the entire staff here at AwesomeSauce Adventure. Granted, that staff is two humans and three cats, but still.

When we say we are going to see all there is to see, we mean it. The tentative plan is to have no plan at all, but to sort of go where the wind takes us. There are some things we really want to do during specific times, like be in Salem for Halloween, or the Florida Keys for Christmas, but other than that we are mostly going to follow the weather, and drive around the country. Probably for a couple of years.

flying by the seat of his pants

Sounds pretty Awesome, if you ask me. Terrifying, amazing, life changing, but most of all Awesome.

We’re ALMOST ready for our adventure. Are you ready?

 

Better safe than smelly

First off, the AwesomeSauce Team would like to congratulate Saucy G and Awesome K on their upcoming wedding! We couldn’t be happier (even our Mews Matilda seems OK with it!), and we look forward to many more adventures, and posts, from the happy couple.

Second…off….The AwesomeSauce Team is a pretty positive group (we like to think). Hardly ever shall we write a negative review, or blog, because negativity takes a lot of time and energy. Energy that could be used on more awesomeness! However, once in a while a negative review might pop in here and there – not because we are trying to be nasty – but because we feel you should know before you go.

WHEW! OK, now lets get to the blog post, shall we?

Recently the AwesomeSauce Duo took a quick trip to Las Vegas, you know, like they do. The two day trip was for a couple of batteries that needed some recharging, some smallish poker tournaments, and, most importantly, to do some recon on wedding chapels!

Awesome K has been working as a poker dealer in Blackhawk, Colorado, for about six months now. He LOVES his new job, getting to do exactly what he loves. Not only does he get to interact with people everyday, he is learning more and more about poker. The only downside of his job is that he can’t play any tournaments now – as his casino is basically the only one with any tournament action. He never gets to put his new tournament knowledge to use! His main goal of the mini adventure was to stretch his poker legs, and try out his “new game.” Saucy G was, of course, along for the tournaments and the action. She was fully ready to be K’s cheerleader as he “shipped” all the tournaments he could cram in to two days. G was ready for a few of her own, though, having studied all the material she could get her hands on. Well…she read a couple magazines, and part of a book…

The first stop was the Aria Poker Room, for the daily 1pm tournament. Both G and K entered, but only one made it to the final table…IT WAS SAUCY G! With over 120 entries, the tournament was one of the largest that Saucy G has participated in, and the second tournament she has cashed in! She played a solid game, made smart decisions, and was able to stay patient and wait for the cards when she needed to. Awesome K was an excellent cheerleader, and coach, keeping an eye on the game as best as he could from a safe distance away. Saucy G ended up coming in 9th! Congratulations on a great tournament G!

Later that evening, after eating the best burger in the world (part victory, part amazing food!) in the Paris casino, the duo headed over to the Flamingo for a midnight tournament. With a $50 buy in, the duo both entered. A much smaller tournament, with only two tables, but the competition was still fierce! The duo was on fire, with another final table and cash win! The 3rd place midnight tournament winner was…SAUCY G! That’s right, two tournament final tables/cashes in ONE DAY! YAY! Awesome K was, again, a wonderful coach and cheerleader, beaming with pride as his “protege” shipped it in Vegas. Nice work team!

Day 2 was all about wedding recon. Not surprisingly, the duo plan to wed in Las Vegas!

Earlier this year, with the help of Mama AwesomeSauce, the duo thought they had found the perfect little chapel for an intimate ceremony. The pictures on the website were stunning, and the whole team felt like it was going to be a perfect fit. A deposit was paid, and everyone thought they were ready to go! All from the amazing website!

Saucy G needed to see the space in person, just to be sure it was perfect. Boy is she glad they checked it out ahead of time! Whoever took the pictures for the website should get an award, because the reality of the space was VERY different in person. The chapel was not in a very nice part of town (wedding row, as the team lovingly calls it, really isn’t a safe neighborhood), with it being sketchy in daylight – there is no way you would catch G walking that sidewalk after dark. Next to the chapel is an abandoned lot, filled with trash and who knows whats. Inside, the space was very tight, uncomfortable, and uninviting. The space offered two options for a ceremony, the indoor hall, and the outdoor gazebo, both of which are stunning online. In person, the indoor chapel looked very neglected. The “silk” flowers were covered with dust and dirt, the “candles” looked like dollar store rejects, and there was a distinct odor to the space that did not invoke feelings of everlasting love. The “bridal suite” was nothing more than an electrical closet, painted to look like an outdoor garden – that looked as though it had also been neglected. The paint was peeling, and the odor was getting stronger.

Once outside, headed to the gazebo area (that the duo had reserved), our guide showed us the route the bride would take. The route backed to an alley, complete with homeless men, trash, and the strongest odor of cat urine G has ever smelled (and she has had cats her whole life). It was all G could do to not start crying – and not tears of joy. The guide must have taken as joy, because she pressed on. After winding her way over the cobbles, passing the dumpster and homeless man, the bride walks into the gazebo area. Rickety benches, full of splinters and sadness, adorn either side of the aisle – leading to the gazebo. Words escape us. The gazebo looked as though it was about to topple over, taking its fake dirt plants with it. Surrounded by the sounds of traffic, the smells of pee, underneath power lines and a fire hazard, the duo decided that this was NOT the place for them to start their lives together. The left as quickly as they could, canceling their reservation as soon as possible, happily fore-fitting their deposit if it meant never setting foot in there again.

The moral of this story? ALWAYS tour the venue first, no matter what the reviews say or the pictures look like. If you are getting married, renting or buying a house, or really any reason, please please PLEASE check it out in advance. You don’t want to be out $100, cause yourself undo stress, and potentially get married in an alley. Better safe than smelly, I say!

Looking for Adventure!

Here at AwesomeSauce Headquarters, we are always plotting and planning our next adventure. Whether it be a trip to the local breweries, a jaunt to the far reaches of the state, or on a road-trip, we are always looking for things to see and do!

We gain inspiration for a variety of sources. One of G-Sauce’s favorite websites in particular, Roadside America, is a treasure trove of adventure ideas! Often while planning an excursion, G-Sauce will check there first, to see if there is anything worth finding, such as a giant Muffler Man, or the World’s Largest Pistachio Nut.

Do you have any recommendations? Any wacky, crazy, awesome, and perhaps little known pocket of awesome that you want to share? Tell us all about it!