Friday, April 27, 2012

Return to Forest City

The third and final (or so we thought) stop on our Spring Moose Maintenance Tour was Forest City, Iowa, the home of Winnebago Industries.

We arrived in this tiny Northern Iowa town Sunday afternoon and squeezed into the last available spot in the Customer Service parking area. At 7:00 Monday morning, we met with our service tech, who went through our list of three service items and whisked the moose off to a service bay.

A couple of our service items were rather extensive, so we were prepared to spend a few nights out of the moose. Monday morning we checked in to our favorite pet-friendly motel in nearby Clear Lake.

And, we waited.  Clear Lake is a lovely town. But, while we waited for our moose it was as if time stood still. As it turned out, we only needed to spend one night at the hotel...this time.

We returned to Forest City on Tuesday afternoon to pick up the moose. There was good news and there was bad news. The bad news was our service wasn't complete. We had parts to wait for. One would be in in a couple of days. The other would take two weeks. We decided to wait just two days for now, and scheduled a return trip in May.  Instead of parking in the Service Center circus, we spent two lovely days in Pammel Park. We enjoyed this spacious site with stream and golf course views and practically had the park to ourselves. All this peace and quiet cost us just $15 a night. What a deal!

We kept ourselves entertained while we waited in Forest City. We did some geocaching and exploring around this very familiar town. We stopped by the Winnebago Visitor's Center and visited the exhibits on its second floor, which we had missed on a prior visit. This life-sized cut out of Winnebago's Founder, John K. Hanson, made us smile.

Thursday morning we received news that our part had arrived. So, we made our way back to the Service Center. This particular trip to Winnebago has been our most frustrating. We won't go into detail here, but suffice it to say we spent most of yesterday waiting on our Winnie while it sat outside the service bay. Doesn't our moose look lonely? We weren't particularly happy.

Our less than satisfying trip to Winnebago was salvaged by our wonderful friends Francile and Gary. They graciously offered us a spot to park for a couple of nights at their farm in nearby Thompson. We enjoyed wonderful conversation, good food and a couple of movies during our stay. To top things off, they broke in their new margarita machine. There's nothing like an ice-cold homemade margarita to wash away our Winnie worries. Thanks so much, friends!

Tomorrow, we're heading south for a month-long visit in our native home town. But, in the words of our former California governor: "We'll be back."

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