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Hi-Yo Silver!

 ‘A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty Hi-Yo Silver!’


A cloud of dust..... My last view of the Old Girl

A cloud of dust….. My last view of the Old Girl

Tried my damndest to get rid of the Old Girl on San Antone AND Laredo Craig’s List.  No bueno.  Didn’t get a single bite.  I must have misjudged the interest in the desirability of that sweet little 6 cylinder diesel buried under the bed.  Miss K said I was being too severe in my description of the condition.  Mebbe so.  I wanted everyone to be crystal clear that the Old Girl  would never be RV-livable again as far as I was concerned. My last resort was eBay.  I have been an eBayer since 1997 and I do not care for what it has become over the years.  Still yet,  I needed to reach a nationwide audience and that was the best way.    So along with some grisly pictures of just how destructive hail can be, I penned this description:

This vehicle was heavily damaged in a major hailstorm. The 5.9 liter Cummins diesel is in near perfect condition for its’ age with 60k total miles and does not smoke or use oil. The Allison 6 speed automatic transmission shifts perfectly. Both components have been serviced at regular intervals. It has a heavy duty OSHKOSH truck frame and hydraulic levelers. It starts and drives well in its’ present condition. All gauges work, brakes and power steering work along with the chassis electrical system and dash AC. It would make a great donor vehicle for another RV with this drivetrain or a Dodge truck of similar year. The steer tires are newer. The drive tires are dry rotted and would cause concern to me if I was contemplating an extended trip. The fuel tank has 85+ gallons of good diesel.

The recreational vehicle components were severely compromised by the hail damage. There are 14 holes in the roof and 21 holes on the passenger side. Some components have been removed or are damaged beyond repair. The RV has been sitting in the South Texas heat and dust for almost 5 months while I fought with the insurance company. It is dirty and dusty-inside and out. I have started and moved it every 2 weeks since the storm.

I KNOW I WILL GET THE INEVITABLE QUESTIONS ABOUT WHETHER THIS RV IS REPAIRABLE. Please save mine and your time. I would NOT consider repairing it and will not answer any queries concerning its’ repair. . Softball size hailstones do tremendous damage and there may be undiscovered damage as well. Buy the RV as represented here for the drive train and other salvageable components.

The Eagle Ford Shale is THE place to sell a reasonably priced RV these days.  Man camps and caliche bottomed basic RV parks fill what was once just ol’ pucker brush.  There is a considerable shortage of available housing.  So maybe I was being too severe.  Miss K said throw the pictures up there on eBay with a fair description and let ‘er buck.   She had a point.   In the end I just couldn’t do it.  Bad karma.  It is what it is.

I started the auction at $1000 with no reserve.  I knew the Old Girl would sell at that price and I wanted to be shut of her.  In the end, a fella from Southern California was the winner.  I was almost afraid to ask what his plans were; I had an uneasy feeling this was not going to end well. After a few days he contacted me and said ‘they’ were flying into San Antone Friday at 5pm and would head down my way straight off.   I was projecting their arrival around 8 or 9pm.  That makes a goodly stretch of hours since I went on shift at 3am so I told Miss K I was going to lay down for a nap until they got here.

SoCal boys in the house

SoCal boys in the house

Sometimes I forget how harsh this South Texas environment is – especially in late August.  You gotta be just as tough as woodpecker lips to get by.  Miss K took a call about 730pm from the SoCal boys.  One of them had suffered a near heatstroke navigating from the air terminal to the rental car lot and was still feeling bad.  They would be down this way Saturday AM.   Told ya I had that uneasy feeling, remember?

When they got here, I told ’em the door was open, keys were in the ignition and to have at it.   I knew I would hear all about the SoCal boys’ plans sooner or later.   In about an hour, they motioned me out from under the awning of the Princess Palace.  They had a few questions which were not out of line and I answered them truthfully.  They also had a copy of the eBay ad which now had a bunch of little check marks on it.  So here is their story…….

Both of these guys were around my age.  I was put off just a tad right out of the gate because they loved to hear themselves talk and everything they had (or did) was considerably better than this South Texas boy.  Condescending?  You betcha! SoCal #1 was the winning bidder on the Old Girl.  He had the EXACT TWIN to her.  That made me a little easier because at least he knew about the basic operating systems.   SoCal #2 was his buddy and had apparently suffered some health issues and was somewhat down on his luck.  #2 was to be the owner of the Old Girl and my anticipation that someone would purchase her with the idea of living onboard was confirmed.  They also planned to drive her all the way to SoCal in this blistering heat –with no roof airs and badly dry rotted tires.  #1 was squatted down on his heels looking at those tires and he said to #2 “They don’t look that bad.”  Hellfire!  They were MUY MALO.  Those drive axle tires were scary bad dry rotted.  #1 also asked me if the dash air worked properly as it was just blowing coolish air at the moment.  I said “it is sitting still in 100+ heat; it will cool down when you get to moving.”  He said “Mine does the same thing.”  I just kept my mouth shut and walked back to the shade refuge of the Princess Palace.

30 minutes later they again motioned me to come up.  “You ready to do this thing?” #1 asked.  #2 was sitting at the Old Girl’s dinette and as I was about to go inside #1 put his arm across the doorway barring my entrance.  “I need to talk to you a minute.  I just redid the ceiling, floors and upholstery in my Dolphin and I know what it cost.   Yours is pretty bad.  Do you think you could help us out on the price?”

I went from zero to bad mad in a second.  “Did I misrepresent the condition of the RV in the eBay ad in ANY WAY?”

#1: “Uh no no!  Its’ just #2 has had some bad times and he doesn’t have a pile of money and I was just thinking if you were to knock $500 off the price it sure would be helpful.”

me: “No”

#2: “Come on!  You know we had considerable expense with the plane tickets and rental car and motel room and all.  How about knocking $100 off the price?”

me: “I don’t know exactly how you Big City fellas do business; maybe low balling a man at the last minute is acceptable in your world.  It don’t cut it with me. I won’t knock 5 cents off the price.  We had a deal and I expect you to honor it.”

#1: “So what are you saying?”

I was just about lathered up by now.

me: “What I am saying is you can get back in that little red car and take your ass back to where you came from.  I am done.”

#1: “Oh no no no.  You misunderstood me.  We will take it.   I didn’t mean to make you mad.”

me: “Time to settle up then.”

So papers were signed and money was counted.  I was sitting counting the money for the 3rd time when #1 said “How many times you gonna count that money?”  I guess that is SoCal humor.  I didn’t smile “As many times as I need to.”

The deal was done and I was walkin’ away, #1 said “Got any advice for our trip?”  I turned and tugged the brim of my Big Hat down against the glaring sun “Don’t turn that rental car in at San Antone.  You made need an extry set of wheels before it is all said and done.”  I turned and walked off.

Miss K got up just in time to see the Old Girl drive off.  That was fittin’.

“How’d it Go?’

“Got a pocket full o’ money”

“Fair enough”


End Note: Fading Fast by Kelly Willis from the What I Deserve cd.  Some people like Emmy Lou Harris.  Give me some Kelly Willis any time!

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Hi-Yo Silver!, 8.8 out of 10 based on 17 ratings
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4 comments to Hi-Yo Silver!

  • Janice Williford Evans

    yaaaa. . .glad it’s done. . .crazy city slickers!

    I was told the same when I listed our fifth wheel/rv hauler on EBay. . .you were too harsh. . .do you really wanna sell it? ? ? a friend asked. . .

    yes. . .but I don’t want anyone comin’ back later sayin’ “but you didn’t tell me”. . .ummm. . .it’s all there in writing buddy. . .

    and yes. . .even at a steal of a price. . .$25,000 as a starting bid, on a complete ready to roll package well worth at least $40, folks still asked if we would lower the price. . .NOPE!

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  • joel

    Fun story. Ya did good, Andy.

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  • Jim

    The old girl served you well. Can’t blame just the city boys for trying to low ball ya, when we sold our 216000 mile worn out pos import sedan with major transmissions problems, a very country gentleman spittin’ chewin’ tobacca everywhere kicked the tires, started the engine, asked if it would move… I replied, Did you read the ad? this car has a DEAD transmission, no FWD, no Reverse, nada gear. Said he’d take it if we knocked off $500… Told him to go suck his spit and walked away. Then he asked if he could borrow my flatbed trailer to take it home on, I said sure, for another $4500.. thats what the trailer cost..

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  • Bryan

    I wonder how far they got before those tires started a blowin’?

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