Friday, July 22, 2011

A Service Experience

A while back I briefly referred to upcoming motorhome repairs which included replacing a leaky slide-out seal and new awning canvas, about a $1500 job, that was scheduled at Oregon Motorcoach Center near Eugene.  We pulled into their parking lot a week ago Thursday, got out to unhook the jeep and gazed at gallons of coolant pouring out from under the engine.  We optimistically reassured ourselves it was just a hose.  The next morning on schedule we vacated the MH as the coach was driven into the service bay. 

We love the Eugene area, the town, the University; there just seems to be a vibrant spirit associated with a college community.  There are great shopping opportunities, restaurants and movie theaters, not to mention the twice-weekly, huge Farmers' Market.  One of our favorite parking places is the Valley River Mall, where we have boondocked in the past, and offers great access to walks along the Willamette River trail.
Great trails along the Willamette River
 We were about a mile into our 6 mile hike when the phone rang and I could tell from the tone of Howard's voice it was not good news.  We needed a new radiator; parts and labor approx. $6,200!  I can't even begin to describe the range of emotions that hit me, but the first was, OMG we'll have to cancel our upcoming sailing cruise from Barbados to Costa Rica on the Star Clipper!  I think the next 5 miles was fueled by pure adrenalin as we tried to think rationally.  The bottom line is, and I'm sure you would agree, we can't afford NOT to go...period.
Our little home is broken..sigh!
Now that we have accepted the inevitable, we relax and go with the drill.  It soon becomes evident that we are dealing with an extremely reputable, highly experienced team of service techs with Bob Vinson at the helm. Dave, our radiator guru, had been with Country Coach for 25 years.  There were probably 10-12 motorhomes there on any given day and we met a wonderful group of folks with varying degrees of repair issues; many quite major.  Our surroundings were comfortable and accommodating, with 50 amp. electric, wifi for those who needed it, a very comfortable lounge with coffee, snacks, TV and reading material.  This is a full service RV center offering everything from engine and chassis work to decorating and remodeling.

And we had fun!  Saw two great movies at the Regal Cinema at Valley River Mall, Larry Crowne and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in 3D and IMAX.  We drove over to the coast at Florence and met our good friends, Don and Joan, for a great seafood lunch at the International C-Food Market.  We had the best pizza ever from the Market of Choice in Eugene.  We shopped at Target, Costco, and Trader Joe's!  We drove around the University of Oregon campus and admired the track stadium.

Florence Harbor
 
Pizza from Market of Choice, even better than Dempsey's!

U of O track
We do have one pretty item to show for all the money we spent.  Millie's Draperies is close by so we had our front privacy drape replaced - it was about time.  Millie's also did the canvas for our awning and does much of the upholstering and window coverings for OMC, Country Coach, and other motorhome facilities in the area.  They made the window boxes for our coach when it was new 11 years ago!  We will soon be recovering our sofa so are beginning to look at fabric choices and will definitely be back here for the work.

Highly recommend!

Of course, I bonded with Bogey!
So now, a week later, we have been welcomed to the State of Washington and are heading for the Escapee's Park in Chimacum until our August 8th date with Port Townsend.  My glass is definitely half full!
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