Saturday, October 9, 2021

Day 17, 18, 19 - Amarillo, TX

Thursday (17) - We left the Albuquerque Balloon Fiesta grounds around 10am after seeing hundreds of balloons flying near the campground including this one which actually landed in the park to switch passengers. I heard it arrive around 6:30am and it was maybe 100 yards from us. They stayed on the ground until after the national anthem at 7:00. At that time, the selected balloon took off with the American flag waving from the basket. Every day, they had a different singer. It was a beautiful morning with barely a breeze so the balloons traveled slowly. They landed all around us with the field in front of our windshield being a popular choice. An enjoyable experience.

Our next stop was Amarillo, TX, at the Big Texan RV Ranch. We are here for four nights. It is affiliated with the Big Texan Steakhouse and we plan on visiting that tourist attraction for dinner one of these days. Maybe tomorrow. They have a pool, sauna, and jacuzzi here which I have been looking forward to. I went into the pool with my phone still in my pocket. After drying it off, it rebooted continuously. Bridget suggested a bag of rice, which I did. The iPhone X is supposed to be IP 67 rated which means surviving 1m depth for 30min. It submerged for less than 1m for maybe 5 min. So it should’ve survived the dunking.

Friday (18) - This morning, the phone was still behaving the same way. We used Uber to go to the super Walmart to stock up on some groceries and I wanted to look at their phone selection. They don’t sell unlocked iPhones so I moved on to grocery shopping. I happen to pull out my phone out of habit and it was sitting on the lock screen. I unlocked the phone and was informed that there was a problem with Face ID but otherwise it seemed to work fine. The battery was at only 2% and I was able to send a text message and receive an email so I am assuming that it works. There is moisture visible on the camera lenses so it’s back in the rice bag except the charging cable is attached. Obviously, the phone isn’t very waterproof. I’ll leave it overnight in a bag of warmed rice and check in the morning.

The Uber experience was fine and it cost under $20 for the round trip. This seems like a reasonable option as we still don’t have the Jeep that we ordered back in June. The status is still the same. Collecting parts.

Saturday (19) - iPhone dead again. Our next stop is in Oklahoma City and there is an AT&T store about 3 miles from the RV park. I will look into picking up a replacement iPhone at that time. That's only a couple of days away.

We did go to The Big Texas Steakhouse last night for dinner. I had the 16oz ribeye and it was perfectly cooked. There is still over half leftover for tomorrow night's dinner. It really does have the look and feel of a tourist trap but that's fine. We're tourists. We were picked up in a limo at our campsite and driven to the restaurant. Convenient.

I actually did get something done today. The Raspberry Pi running the Victron open-source software no longer dimmed and the screen saver no longer worked. This happens every time that I do a firmware upgrade which I did a few weeks ago. I finally got around to downloading the scripts from GitHub. I added the URLs here so I don't have to search for them again.


  1. So, you going to upgrade to the latest and greatest from the fruit people? ;)

  2. So glad you had a great experience at the Balloon fest! One of the highlights of our RV life, for sure! We had been several times via car/hotel, but there is nothing like being on the grounds!!!