Posted by on Jan 30, 2013 in gratitude | 6 comments

Even the simplest life can offer up obstacles. Things break. Propane leaks. It is always our choice HOW we deal with these challenges.

Marika and Mabel came for a ten day visit this month and one of the first things Marika said when she stepped into the RV was that she smelled propane. I was surprised since I’d only gotten a whiff every once in a while and chalked it up to my imagination.

But she immediately took action. She made me get my nose up close to the stove burner where, indeed, I smelled it very strong. We turned off the propane at the tank and scheduled a repair. We called a mobile repair company so that we wouldn’t have to drive into Morro Bay and wait around. The convenience was worth the $95.00 trip charge.

The company came, did a check around the stove but found no leak. They recommended we remove the solenoid, a device between the propane tank and the system that shuts down all propane flow if there’s a leak, since it didn’t function. But they assured me that the alarm part of the system was still working.

We also got a new regulator for the tank since they recommended that it needs to be replaced every 8-10 years. They left, all was fine. And the next morning the smell of propane was even stronger.

They returned and again, checked around the stove and yes, she did find a leak. But she said that, because our RV is so old, there are no replacement parts so we opted to have them cap off the affected burner. There was no smell, no bubbling of soapy water around the capped valve so we were good to go.

Until the next morning and again, the smell of propane permeated the air, this time not at the capped burner but in the drawer underneath the stove.

Instead of calling them a third time we made an appointment at the repair place in town.

We dropped the RV off and headed into town, awaiting their phone call. After three hours of testing every fitting and appliance in the RV, they discovered a small leak around the stove that was fixed with a little tightening of a fitting. They changed out the cap to a more substantial piece of hardware and informed us that we no longer had a working alarm, which was against the law, so we had them install one.

As we drove over to pick up the RV I could feel myself getting upset, angry, pissed off and cranky about the whole business. I was already composing a nasty letter in my head to the first company about their incompetence and the inconvenience of everything.

But by the time I was driving the RV back home, I was so grateful that no one had gotten sick from the leaking propane and that there hadn’t been an explosion. And there really was no inconvenience.

We were able to leave the RV to get repaired while Marika and I took the dogs for a lovely day of outings. We enjoyed a delicious breakfast outdoors with a view of Morro Rock, then took the dogs for a great walk out to the rock where they had the best time sniffing all kinds of new smells.

I was able to relax in the back of the car with the dogs while Marika studied the soaring peregrines with her spotting scope. And then we drove to some nearby ponds where Marika caught glimpses of widgeons and shovelers and the dogs got to check out even more smells.

It was a lovely day. We were able to be out in nature while someone fixed our problem. There is no more propane leak, and we have a working propane alarm. With so many things to be great-full for that there is just no room for cranky!

What would you choose? How do find the gratitude in challenging situations? Please share by clicking on the Comments below.

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