Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Tuesday August 6, 2013 - Floribunda / Petunia Launch / Take-off Status Update

My Verizon Jet Pack has been a little temperamental the last couple of days so I haven't blogged.  And, I guess I have to say not much has been happening either.  Most everything's ready in the rig; save for the towing bracket that will be installed on Petunia Smart Car tomorrow.  I'm driving it into Sacramento to Allied Trailers in the morning and I'm not sure how long they'll need it; but, the plan is for Judy to give me a ride home and then I'll drive the Flair in, when Petunia's ready, to have them instruct me on hooking up, driving and towing.  I have to admit I'm a little nervous; but I'm sure if I'm careful and follow instructions I'll get used to it quickly.

There's one more time hurdle to get over in order to head out.  Last week I had my eyes checked and found that I might do well to have glasses mainly for night driving.  They may be in by Thursday or Friday; if not, I'll have to wait until Monday to pick them up and head North.

I also had another blip in my plan, but that was partially rectified today ... I'd gone to see a physical therapist at the request of my primary care physician because I'd complained to her about my right knee giving me lots of trouble.  The PT said I'm dealing with bone on bone and am ready to consider a total knee replacement - that's the thanks I get for the 40+ years of running I did.  Well, I'm not personally ready at this time so the PT gave me some exercises to do each day (I've been pretty good about doing them) and suggested I buy a really good pair of walking shoes for support and comfort.  This afternoon I went to Fleet Feet, a store I frequented for years and years during my jog/running career; the salesman spent about thirty minutes with me and fitted me with a superbly comfortable Asics shoe in which I can already feel some relief to my right knee - and to my left foot that's developed plantar fasciitis in response to my favoring my right leg!  Hopefully I'll get some relief from what I consider terrible pain; I don't think of myself as a 'wus' as I've had lots of back surgery and I'm not much of a complainer (physically, at least); but between the knee on one side and the heel on the other it's really tiring and very uncomfortable!

Now, for some positive news!  I'm not sure that I mentioned that I'd had a little 'bill' from the IRS when I returned from Mexico in June.  It seems that when my son-in-law delivered documents to my CPA who did my 2011 taxes while I was living in Guatemala,  there should have been two separate 1099s from the Social Security Administration because I'd retired during the year.  Well, David (son-in-law) found one 1099 in my mail [don't have any idea where the other went!] and when the accountant did my tax return he didn't catch the error.  When I arrived home from Mexico I received one of those very official IRS letters stating that I owed $4,613 in taxes for 2011 and over $1000 in interest and penalties.  They gave the SSA 1099s as proof of the debt.  Yikes!  I met with my accountant and he agreed that the return was in error; however, why I hadn't received any IRS notice earlier (like before or during the 6 weeks I was at home between the Guatemala and Mexico adventures) I can't figure out.  So, in June I sent a check for the $4,613 and a long letter explaining that I'd been in Guatemala during 2011 and 2012 and was not aware of the discrepancy/fault.  I agreed that I owed the tax and was paying it, but that I'd appreciate it if they'd reconsider the amount of the penalties and interest.  Two weeks ago I received a short letter from the IRS thanking me for my communication and instructing me not to send any more money until they would contact me, "within 60 days."  The letter said that I would be instructed as to what more, if any, I'd owe.  Well, today I stopped by my house and picked up mail - mostly flyers, etc. - and one thin envelope from the US Department of the Treasury.  Inside I found a check for $4,613 - the exact amount I'd sent them in June.  There's no letter but the check is defined as a tax refund!

I talked with my accountant and he instructed me to deposit the check in my savings account but not to spend it.  I asked if I should contact the IRS and he said that isn't necessary at this time, as long as I don't spend it in case they find that it's a mistake on their part.  I guess I'll probably write another letter in the near future; for now I'm enjoying the increase in the balance of my savings account!


  1. In response to your comment on my blog....

    Mom and Dad are in their mid-80's...having them close to my sister is going to be great for everyone, including us since we are now in my sister's backyard. The fridge is great because having the freezer on the bottom means they don't have to bend over to get into the fridge, which one does way more than you get into your freezer. They got it at a Sears Outlet Store, getting 40% off the regular price...and ended up getting a washer and dryer from there too so there will only be one delivery charge. Should have them moved in the weekend of the 17th. I am hoping that we can get away for a week or two in late August, come back, and a few weeks later go out again around mid-September. For now, our attention is focused on mom and dad....and building a better ramp so that we don't break our holding tank pipes again as we come and go from my sister's house! (lol) If you are still around after the 18th, by all means get in touch with us. Email is dave at goingrvway.com (with the normal @ sign of course in place of the word "at")

    Be sure to ask them about backing up...how far they think you can safely back up with your car attached. My guess is that they will say only a few feet. At least you won't have much of a car back there to pull, that will be a big advantage. With our HHR, we have to watch the rear clearance with turns a little bit...not as much as others who pull longer cars. --Dave

    1. p.s. - when our Verizon air card acts up, I open up the back, pull out the battery for 30 seconds, reinstall and turn on. It has cleared up our periodic problems each time. Hope this helps.

  2. I might do well to have glasses mainly for night driving.

    I hate driving at night. In fact, I think the last time I drove at night was when we were in Las Vegas in March of 2012!

  3. Bone on bone hurts!! Lots! You will know when you are ready for the surgery. Too bad all of this is coinciding with your maiden voyage.

    Re the car hookup, be sure you have a pair of gloves just for that. Never ever hook up with people talking to you. We have seen so many mistakes and much damage. Other Rvers are eager to help you leave and want to get in a final hug and adios and that is where an error can be made through distraction. We have made it a point to never approach someone hooking up until the job is completed. Also don't be shy to ask folks to wait until you are hooked up before saying your goodbyes.

    1. Thanks for the great advice. I'm going to buy gloves today and I'll remember to concentrate - without distractions. I'm not wanting to be in a hurry - I'll remember that fact when I'm hooking up the car!