Sherman, parked for the night near Mayerthorpe Airport, Mayerthorpe, Alberta. Photo taken Saturday evening.
Where are Kevin and Ruth right now? Whitecourt, Alberta!

Where are they going next? Towards Grande Prairie, Alberta.

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Through Alabama and into Mississippi

Our internet allotment was getting low, and we rely on being connected. And Verizon doesn't make it easy to have an online account when you are a Canadian citizen, so we couldn't recharge our pay as you go data pack without finding an actual Verizon store.

Having used cellular internet in many different countries, I have to say that they sure do make it difficult and expensive both in the U.S. and in Canada. Must be something to do with too many rules. Looking forward to getting into Mexico where it's easy and cheap!

So, the nearest Verizon store along our route was in Tupelo, Mississippi. Not a real problem, it was just under 100 miles (160 kms) and we wanted to head a little further south anyhow.

Not that south means "warmer". At least not now... but it will improve.

In to Alabama.

Part of the Natchez Trace Parkway runs through the NW corner of Alabama. Not much, but enough to say we were there!

Despite the abnormal cold, we stop to see things along the way.

Just a short hike with little informational plaques along the way.

Beaver dam. Amazing what these creatures can do.

Me!

Bridge over the Tennessee River.

Sherman, taking a break.

A pelican on the Tennessee River.

We stopped at Freedom Hills Overlook.

Do not do this... it's a complete waste of time until they cut down the trees that now block the view!

Yep, sitting on that bench is supposed to afford a nice view.
But this is all you see.

Sherman, again. Sorry, but he's just so darned photogenic!

Scenery along the way.

And in to Mississippi.

We found the Verizon store right beside a big Walmart on a very busy street on the outskirts of Tupelo. We did a decent sized grocery shop, including a 12 pound turkey for $0.78 USD ($0.99 CAD) per pound! That will keep us fed for a few days!

Ruth bought a new roasting pan as well. Yes, the turkey and roasting pan fit in our oven.... but just barely!

Looking forward to a delicious Sunday roast dinner! It will take that long for the turkey to thaw out before we can cook it!

Then, I went into the Verizon store when Ruth was putting away the groceries.  I cringed as I paid the ridiculous $108 USD ($143 CAD) for 10 GB. But, unless you have a contract account, there is no other way. I could get it a lot cheaper if it was in my phone (instead of our Verizon Jetpack device) but then you can't use the hotspot option. And either way you look at it, Verizon has the best coverage and apparently they know it!

Anyhow, we're back online but we will have to try to use more free wifi if possible between now and when we cross in to Mexico January 7th.

By this time, it was almost 4:00pm, and it gets dark at 5:00pm. No way were we staying at that Walmart. Too busy and noisy.

Tombigbee State Park was only 7 miles away. I knew it would be expensive, but at least we would be warm.

They had a price increase December 1st. Now $24 USD ($31.50 CAD) per night! Yikes. And the campground isn't the nicest. The park itself is nice enough, but the campground also rents by the month and so you have people actually living there. Nice laundry and bathrooms though, so Ruth did a load while we were there.

Dinner. Nice tender oven baked tilapia.

Today, we'll fill Sherman's gas tank and look to get the propane topped up as well. We'll go explore Tupelo, and then find somewhere to overnight. Maybe we'll ask at the Tupelo airport!

Yesterday's drive, 102 miles (163 kms).

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Best selling pro chef's knife on Deal of the Day!


And in Canada...




27 comments:

  1. I like your header picture with the red leaf tree. Was it a maple?

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    1. Thank you, it was a pretty but not sure what kind. We didn't walk over to see.

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  2. We got Straight Talk at Walmart for $55US for unlimited data and talk for 30 days. But can't use hotspot on phone either. But I was told you can buy a small hotspot thingy (?) to use for laptop etc. Not sure what that costs but we'll be looking into that next spring.

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    1. Right, so without that "thingy" that won't work for us. We need to use laptops.

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    2. Oh I missed the jetpak thingy LOL!

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  3. Oh forget to mention we are sitting in Saltillo for last 2 days in SNOW! -5C last night. Sunny today but roads still closed due to snow accumulation. Trucks are parked. Maybe tomorrow we can head further south :)

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    1. Well at least you are hunkered down somewhere nice. Saltillo is a pretty city. Hope that is the last of the snow for you!

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  4. I have friends in Alabama and they are freaking out as actually had snow on the ground this morning. Stay warm!

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    1. Yep, quite a few places had snow that rarely get it! The system is moving out now though and the temperatures are starting to rise so things should be back normal within next few days.

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  5. Love fish done any way. Good deal on the Turkey, we can fit a 12 lb turkey in our oven and even on our Weber Q 100. which is the way we prefer it.
    For our Verizon wifi we have been getting a top up card at Dollar General and they are just about everywhere. Scratch the code once and when our data gets low add another $100. same price as the verizon store. and it stays on that account until you need it. We find that much simpler.

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    1. Where and how do you input the code with a Jetpack? Either way, still ridiculously expensive.

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    2. Just access your jet pack account from your computer and enter the code, if you use the same top up card you enter the code once, the rest is explained as you go. It is expensive yes but does work very well as you know. We have done this for quite a few years.

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  6. We have always had problems topping up our Virgin Broadband as they will not accept Canadian credit or debit cards. We have always found a Radio Shack to top up but now they have closed 99% of the radio Shack stores. T-Mobile will sell us more time if we phone them and talk to a human but their online system will not accept Canadian cards either.

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    1. I don't understand why they have to make it so difficult to top up when you have a foreign credit card on line. They have no problem using that same credit card in the store! :-(

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  7. I like my at@t go phone. I buy 100 mb of data for $1.00 US. Lasts me two days of light use. No Video.

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    1. Can you use your phone as a hotspot with that plan?

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    2. My neighbor had this plan at&t go phone yrs; around $29 month; wifi hot spots works perfect - FOR SURE - always uses mine at MY home! Or call in on phone automatic service or rep or go online & add more data. No problem. MANY of our Canadian friends in Mexico have purchased good smart phone for equiv $30 US & 21 days of service with lots data, unlimited talk/text for only $105 pesos! They've been using these for 2 yrs - said works great in US! Works with hot spots/wifi also i.e. save purchased data. Only complaint is when in Canada/US & calling either - must dial 1 first. You do get Mexican phone number. It's VERY cheap! All said coverage is great! We're talking less than $10 month for unlimited talk/text & much data. Some places don't count data of fb, movies, & few other things. So get lots data for your money. All said service was great! Mex phone is now their main phone for under $10 month! Thi is tel-cell service & phone. Hope this is helpful to you!

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    3. Unfortunately Pat, anything with a plan won't work for us. We need to use the pay as you go.

      We can't wait to get to Mexico, it is so much easier and cheaper and from what we hear we should be able to continue to use the Mexican SIM card in Canada and the US, the same way we use it in Mexico but you have to buy a special one or make the package you purchase a special one. I can't remember the details of it at the moment.

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  8. Would love for Ruth to share her fish recipe. Looks delicious! You are surely running into some cold weather in the southern US right now, as you know. It's forecast to hit 39 in the Orlando area (where we're in an RV park) tonight and tomorrow. Brrrrr!

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    1. I will try to do this one day when we don't have a lot to talk about in the post. It is actually a pretty easy recipe.

      It seems to be cold all along the bottom of the States but that should start changing and going back up starting today. :-)

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  9. We use MetroPCS. The basic plan costs us $50.00 a month for two lines, tax incl. and gives us talk, text, and 1G of high speed data. The trick is that the slowed-down rate after 1G is actually fine unless you are streaming video. We got very reasonable Samsung Galaxy On5 phones that function as hotspots. In theory, you can buy Mexico and Canada coverage for an additional $10 or so, although in practice our phones did text only in Baja. I don't think we were doing things right, though, and in Baja there are large areas with no coverage whatever. In the US, MetroPCS runs on the T-Mobile network, and sometimes on other smaller networks out in the boonies. I think some of the other systems have marginally better quality-of-service, but to me the low price is worth it.

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    1. The thing is we need data, we don't need talk and text and it is the data that adds up. Once we hit Mexico we should be good and we hear that they have a new "package" that can also be used in Canada and the US. So once we get there we will check that out and see how that works.

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  10. Those beavers are hard workers. That's how our local towns got their names many years ago.

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    1. They sure are! We sort of figured that the beavers had something to do with your local towns name. ;-)

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  11. Know your frustration for connectivity. Over the last seven years went through all the various options, while travelling through the US. Got tired of the different suppliers changing their plans and frustrating ways you had to add amounts. Buying hot spot devices in addition to a phone, then discovering the supplier later changed their plan by putting time limits on the data/minutes you bought. Three winters ago just went with a Rogers share as you go plan that I use in Canada, as my home phone and 13GB of data. When in the US they charge (now$6 a day 10 day max per month) for roaming. Same phone number, connectivity everywhere and can use as a hot spot. Haven't had a problem the last three years. I guess you sometime just have to pay a little more to keep things simple, or the suppliers finally won the battle.

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    1. The Rogers plan wouldn't work for us either and it is still expensive. As you say, sometimes you just have to suck it up and pay the price.

      We are definitely looking forward to getting to Mexico and getting back onto TelCel. We are also going to look into their new international plan or whatever it is called because with that it looks like we should be able to continue to use it up here in the US as well as Canada.

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