Thursday, December 15, 2022

Virginia to Florida: Unexpected Tires

November 1st to 8th, 2022                                           Most Recent Posts
On the way and at                                               October From Start to Finish
Fort Clinch State Park                                The Rains Came and So Did the 3 C’s
Fernandina Beach, Florida

20221102_173459I pulled out of the barnyard on Tuesday November 1st headed for North Carolina on my way to Florida.  When I checked all 10 tires, one of my rear tires on the RV wasn’t reading on my TPMS monitor and I couldn’t put any air in it.  I drove to the nearest garage but the person who could look at an inside tire on an RV only worked nights.  The very nice lady called around and found that McCarthy Tire in Charlottesville could check it for me.

Long story short, they did, the tire was flat.  I am SO lucky that it was one of the duly tires in the rear but furious that my TPMS didn’t say zero pounds rather than give me the dashes that say the monitor needs a new battery.  I had driven over 35 miles on 3 rear tires on Interstate 64 at 60 mph. 

These Michelin tires are only 5 years old.  That seems on the short side of life span to me.  But, I wanted to take no chances with the others so it was a big expense I was not prepared for but I bought 6 new tires.  McCarthy’s is a truck tire place and the only thing they had in Winnona’s size was Hercules.  So that’s what I bought.   Please tell me what you know about Hercules tires.


By the tine I finally got to McCarthy it was late afternoon.  Winnona had to stay overnight so I called my friend Pam to bemoan my fate and she suggested we go for Mexican food.   Samhain had just passed and it was the Day of the Dead.   Thus the decorations.

I was able to get on my way the next day and drove to Roanoke Rapids Walmart where I spent the night.  Luckily for me, my first state park, Fort Clinch, had reopened its campground after hurricane Ian.  Some of my other park reservations were still closed.  I was heading south on a wing and a prayer.  If the parks didn’t open I’d be so stuck since it is impossible to get last minute reservations in Florida parks public or private.

The next day I drove to Walterboro SC Walmart to spend the night.

Here’s what I found in Walterboro.  No wonder Walmarts are beginning to refuse to allow RVers to use their parking lots as campgrounds.  The etiquette for staying in a business parking lot is – NO SLIDES, NO JACKS and certainly NO CHAIRS.



I pulled into Fort Clinch State Park on the 5th, only one day late for my two week reservation.  This is the 2nd time in a row I’ve left the farm and had a problem which delayed me.  I hope this isn’t a trend.  

My fantastic neighbor Shayne helped guide me in to site 11.  Ahhhhh…..high 81, low 72.   Grrrrr – sunset is now at 5:30pm since the time change.   We are going to quit doing this right??


For the next 3 days I enjoyed the beach and took a trip to the delightful town of Fernandina Beach.


That’s not the moon, that’s the sun on a very cloudy day.


Lots of shells on both the beach of the St Mary’s River and the Ocean near where they meet.



The rock jetty is in the distance.



Closer look at the jetty which is pretty much on the corner of the river and the ocean.


Very common beach gatherings.


Looking back at the shore from the jetty.




One afternoon I went into nearby Fernandina Beach.  It’s a cute little town that they have charmed up.


I’ve never seen anything like this before and wished it was painted something other than gray.


On street parking was very convenient for Ruby.  Many of the old commercial buildings have luckily not be razed.


I visited the Chamber of Commerce and found that they have a self guided walking tour of their beautiful old buildings and houses.  But by that time I didn’t have time to do it. . . . . for another day.  But I did take a few pictures of my favorites as I walked around town.



Luckily this house had an historical marker so I know that it is a classical revival house built in 1860 by Dr. John Lesesne and is one of the oldest houses in Fernandina Beach.   Dr Lesesne left during the civil war and never returned.  The house became the property of Judge John Friend whose descendants live in it today.  Now that’s pretty cool.


This building also had a marker.  Originally the US Post Office –Customs House- Courthouse it was dedicated in 1912.  The marker said it was Italian Renaissance Revival whatever that means to students of architecture.  I just thought it was wonderful looking with all its iron balconies outside the windows.


I always think of the wild west as having saloons, not Florida.  And The Palace no less.


Those who know me know that I am not a shopper so the only store I entered today was Nana Theresa’s Bake Shop, a relatively non descript store on a side street.   What is that on top of this rectangle you architecture buffs.


Even this late in the afternoon there were still goodies available.


And folks buying and partaking.


How to choose????????????   I’m usually a pastry buff but those cupcakes looked so good.  Especially the ones on the bottom right which were supposed to be coconut cupcakes with coconut cream icing.



Unfortunately it was not very coconutty and 3 bites for $4 seems over priced. 
Oh well you win some.  You lose some.

Still I’ll end on this sweet note. 
Next post is not quite so sweet.



  1. Six years on tires is usually considered the “safe” maximum. You are lucky you got five years out of yours, considering the amount of traveling you do.

    It’s unfortunate that most people have no clue how to determine the age of a tire by looking at the DOT code on the sidewall. Oh well.

    At least you’re back on the road and didn’t experience a blowout that could have caused serious damage.

    BTW - I wouldn’t have spent $4 on a cupcake. Just my 2¢. LOL.

    1. I would have just once life is short enough live big

    2. Wish I knew who you were anonymous. I definitely agree with you. Life is short too bad the cupcake wasn't really worth $4.

    3. Jody that is exactly why I went ahead and even though I was financially unprepared to buy new tires until spring I replaced them all for fear of a blowout.

  2. The cloud picture on the beach is really nice. Is there any sea glass in the shell beds? I see that the birds there have meetings just like the birds in Duck. The butterfly wall looked like peeling paint at first. You are right- gray was not a good paint choice. Too bad your $4 cupcake was nothing to write home about.... xxxooo

    1. Glad you liked the picture Pam. There are a lot of shells on this beach but since I do not collect shells anymore I didn't look closely enough to see if there was any sea glass but I cannot imagine that there isn't. Xxxooo to you too

  3. Sorry about the tire expense but five years does seem good for your mileage. Your water views look inviting even under gray sky. The cupcake, a no go.

    1. I agree with you Gaelyn the water views even under a gray sky were wonderful and also that the cupcake was a no-go.

  4. How nice of that RV to park right next to you at WM and then break out the chairs, making you look like a guilty party too. Some people have no class at all. Sadly, I've seen this behavior (and worse) all too often.

    I think you'll be pleased with those Hercules tires. Micheleins are way overrated and have sidewall cracks that appear too early. Not to mention the outrageous price.

    1. So glad to hear that about the tires Paul. When I asked was I safe, It was side wall cracks he showed me that caused Mc Carthy to suggest I replace them all. OUCH!

  5. We do five to seven years on our tires. Michelins have served us well.we also have enclosed rv storage when we arent traveling so no sun damage for the sidewalls. We are at the beach too. But sunny and in the 40s rather than cloudy and in the 80s. Either way the beach is gorgeous.

    1. Tires out of the sun is the trick Sue. Mine have tire covers but my rig is never under cover. I was hoping to get 6 years out of these. Hoping I'll get more out of the Hercules which I'd never heard of until I bought them. That was scary.

  6. I love your description of Fernandina Beach. It's been a few years, but that's exactly the way I remember it. Did you find the ice cream place? Seems if you did there would be a picture of you eating your ice cream!!

    1. Oh serious bummer Sharon. You'll see in my next post why the ice cream place totally skipped my mind. But I'm already booked in for next year in November so I'll have another chance.

  7. Love that little town. Seems we were there but I really can't remember when. Love it when you are in Florida to keep me in ocean pics :)

    1. Glad I can help with ocean pics Laurie. Thanks for your comments.

  8. Wonderful that you're back on the beach!! Glad you were able to get new tires without any mishaps - at least the TPMS gave you enough information to have you check it out. Wonderful shot of the gulls over the rocks. Maybe I don't buy them often enough, but $4 for a cupcake doesn't seem bad - except when they aren't delish :-)) You're getting closer to caught up!

    1. Couldn't agree more that I'm glad to have gotten tires without any mishaps and shocked I could drive at 60 miles an hour for 35 or 40 miles on 3 rear tires. Still hoping to get caught up before Christmas but it's looking doubtful.

  9. Just wrote a comment and lost it. Grrr. Love the beach pictures! I agree that the butterflies looked like peeling paint at first. I can imagine that looking so much prettier in a different color, even just the butterflies. 🦋 Beautiful buildings. All of us have spent too much on something in our day. Unfortunate that cupcake wasn't totally tasty.

    1. I hate that when I write something and then it disappears and I have to do it again. So good to see you here and I'll be able to see you in person in about FOUR days!!

  10. So glad you made it to Florida safely! I think you made a wise decision to buy all new tires. We had to do the same thing last summer, and our tires were only three years old...and they were top of the line. Fernandina Beach is such a sweet town! We were there in 2019 for the Victorian Christmas and it was so much fun. I enjoyed seeing your photos of the town not packed with people for the celebration.

  11. OK, 1st of all I'm disappointed in the cupcake, wahwahwah....yes, too much, and I already wanted 3 cupcakes! Not coconutty? That's a travesty!
    Yes, etiquette is severely lacking these days, especially with many of our fellow RVers, lawn chairs at wallyworld, please, appreciate the free night and stop abusing it, please...
    Yes, I really love that butterfly wall, the color works with the drab, peeling paint theme/scenario, but would be really beautiful in a better color...


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