As I Wander · Van Life

A Not So Pleasant Night – Climate Control Escapades

On March 16, I took Bella to the shop in Kingsland GA to get 2 recalls and a minor taillight issue taken care of.

The shop told me it would only take “a couple of hours”. So, I was expecting to be back at the campground in the early afternoon.

FIVE HOURS LATER… Bella was done.

I suppose a time estimate of “a couple of hours” could conceivably be stretched to 5 hours but, needless to say, it was a long day.

I left Kingsland the next day with Bella all fixed up and ready to roll.

Current Agenda

My current goal is to get my climate control issue resolved.

In my Leaving Homestead Florida – February 2021 post I hinted about my need to resolve my climate control issues.

This hasn’t been an easy task because Covid caused backlogs and price increases. Even so, I’m hoping to get something in the works in the near future.

During the search I found myself backtracking through Myrtle Beach, SC and New Bern, NC. I enjoy these places so I certainly can’t complain.

Taking A Break

Frustrated that nothing seems to be working in my favor… I decided to take a break and spend a few days in the Outer Banks.

Nothing good is ever accomplished in the realm of frustration – frustration is simply a sign to stop and take a break.

I was already in North Carolina so why not go back to the Outer Banks!?

And… the off season rates end March 31 at my favorite Outer Banks campground. I needed to take advantage of the low off season rates while I can!

Leaving The Outer Banks – Or Not

I spent a few days on the Cape Hatteras National Seashore – camping in Rodanthe NC.

My check out day was March 31 but, as I plotted out my travel plan, I noticed a cold front would soon blanket the surrounding inland area.

Inland temps in the lower 30’s were expected for at least 2 nights over the next several days.

In Rodanthe, the temps would get down to the 40’s. The 40 degree temps aren’t my favorite but they’re much better than freezing temperatures.

I’d reached a pick your poison moment and had to decide which poison I’d rather endure.

I extended my stay in Rodanthe through the weekend… and also paid the peak season rates starting April 1.

Colder Than Expected

I’m thankful I decided to stay in the Outer Banks because the inland temperatures ended up being colder than expected.

Had I left The Outer Banks on March 31 I would have had to deal with temps in the upper 20’s.

Although I’m thankful I stayed, it was no bed of roses.

I Can’t Feel My Feet

The daytime temps were in the mid-upper-40’s and the night time temps were in the low 40’s.

I could barely tell my heater was on and dealing with temps in the 40’s all day had chilled me to the bone.

Even wearing thick socks… my feet were cold and never seemed to get warm. Some of this may be age or possibly thyroid issues but the weather certainly didn’t help.

Before hopping into bed I decided to switch socks. In the dark (too lazy to turn the light on), I tried to take my sock off so I could put a clean one on but was frustrated that that the darned sock wouldn’t come off.

It was only when I turned the light on that I saw my sock had already come off. I just couldn’t feel that it was no longer on my foot.

Once in bed, my upper body warmed up under the covers but my feet never got warm.

Waking Up With A Jolt

Somehow I had fallen asleep although I’m not sure how long I slept.

Suddenly, something jolted me out of my slumber.

My eyes just opened up – like the end scene of the Avatar movie.

There was a weird feeling in my lower left leg but I figured it was just cold. So, I rolled over and tried to go back to sleep.

Morning Has Broken

After a long night, morning finally broke and I begrudgingly got out of bed.

As the sun came out, the van warmed up and my feet started to thaw. They weren’t literally frozen – just very cold.

Eventually I noticed a familiar pain in my left foot.

It felt like it had endured a bad cramp.

Hmm….. I bet that’s what jolted me out of my sleep last night. My foot was probably too cold to feel the full-on cramp.

What To Do

Another 40 degree night was expected so I ran various scenarios through my head about how to fix my cold feet problem.

A temporary fix was needed until I could remedy my climate control dilemma.

In the nearby area there’s a small grocery store, gas stations, hotels and restaurants along with tourist activities.

The nearest store with anything I would need is 40 minutes away.

I prefer not traveling on the weekends and it’s also Easter weekend.

My choices were… deal with another cold night… or drive 40 minutes away (and back).

A Near Collision

I made the 40 minute trek thru Nags Head, NC to a Walgreens in Kill Devil Hills, NC.

If Walgreens didn’t have what I was looking for I would drive another 10 minutes to the Walmart in Kitty Hawk.

Traffic wasn’t bad on my way to Kill Devil Hills but it didn’t last long.

On the way back to the campground…

While driving through Nags Head, without a stitch of warning, a car from another lane darted into my lane and stopped to turn left… right smack in front of me… even though there was a left turn lane they could have pulled into.

I slammed the brakes on and stopped just inches from their driver’s side door (they were also sitting cockeyed).

They were probably tourist’s who didn’t know where they were going but they obviously weren’t paying attention.

My Temporary Climate Control Fix

My highly technical temporary fix for cold feet is a simple heating pad.

I got a large heating pad that automatically shuts itself off after 2 hours. The heating pad I purchased has a setting for warm, low, medium and high.

On cold nights, the heating pad can also be used to warm the bed before I hop on in.

A Glorious Night Of Sleep!

That night I went to bed with my heating pad at the foot of the bed.

It was truly a glorious moment!

The heating pad worked great to keep my lower extremities warm.

I had to get up during the night to answer the dastardly call of nature that only seems to come once I’m all toasty warm and sleeping good.

My bathroom is only a few steps away from the bed but, by the time I headed back to bed, I was cold.

Back in bed, I turned the heating pad on and went back to sleep.

What’s Next?

I need to head back to Georgia.

Now that I’ve cleared my head, a potential climate control solution has presented itself, it’s in Georgia and I need to look into it.

It’s unfortunate that I didn’t look into this when I was in Georgia last month. But, at the time, I was being stubborn because it wasn’t something I wanted to consider.

Why am I considering it now?

Because anything I do has to be MCS friendly. It’s non-negotiable.

Everything I wanted to do and have already looked into has not been MCS friendly.

In the deep, dark recesses of my complicated mind I kinda-sorta suspected the solution I wanted to go with wouldn’t be MCS friendly.

I guess I was going through another phase where I thought I could be normal again and had to re-learn that I’m not.

What was I thinking wanting to be normal?!

Silly me.

Sometimes in the winds of change we find our true direction

About The Picture(s)

The winds were ferocious for a few days and the sand was blowing like a blizzard.

These pictures were taken along the Cape Hatteras National Seashore in North Carolina. I can’t say for certain but I think it was somewhere in the Pea Island area.


2 thoughts on “A Not So Pleasant Night – Climate Control Escapades

  1. Well I’m glad you found a solution for your poor feet and you a had electric hook up. Hope you find that climate control that will work for you. Good Luck


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