We Are Stuck In The Red Mud….Norman, Oklahoma

We are currently parked at the Thunder Bird State Park. Home of the red dirt and red dirt makes red mud and red mud makes red lakes. Derek is out truck shopping at this very moment. Let me go back a few months to catch you up on what has been going on with our 2003 Ford F250 . Back in October 2012 our truck problems began with a “popped” spark plug. I am no mechanic and do not claim to understand anything about vehicles, but apparently this is a common problem with Fords from 2003. So we have replaced the spark plugs four times now,  happened in October 2012, February 2013, June 4 and now June 7. So after speaking with several mechanics, we have come to the conclusion that we need to replace the truck. One of the good things about being “stuck in the red mud” is that Oklahoma has a lower sales taxes on trucks than Texas or Kansas(Our next stop on our trip was suppose to be Hays, Kansas) and the added time with my little brother, his wonderful new bride and family.

So back to the story of our lives.

TUESDAY JUNE 4 4:30 PM (2 days before on launch off date)

Derek calls me and asks that I pick him up, another spark plug “pooped” and he had to take the truck to the shop.

WEDNESDAY JUNE 5 3:30 PM (the day before our launch off date)

Pick up said truck from the mechanic. Everything looks to be good and we were told we should be good for at least 3 months.


Leave Austin, full of excitement to get our road trip on the way.


We arrived in Norman, OK , after our first night of boon docking at a Wal-Mart parking lot in Denton, Texas. Our plan was to get dressed quickly and head to Oklahoma City for my little brothers wedding at 3:30 PM. As Derek was backing the rig into our water front spot, a huge gush of liquid dropped from the truck and another plug had popped. SHIT> What are we suppose to do now? Quickly call my brother, he will meet us at the mechanics shop in town and let us borrow his truck. At the mechanic shop, my brother quickly hands over his keys(remember this detail, it will be funny later) switch out the car seats and we are off to OKC. My brother was late to his wedding by 3 minutes, luckily for everyone involved it was a court wedding and lasted about a total of 7 minutes.  So we head over to the “reception” which was in downtown OKC. I use reception in quotes because it was more like our whole family had dinner.


Leaving dinner, Derek, Zoe and I are strolling through the parking lot, glad that we actually made it to the wedding. I think we have got everything figured out.  Truck in shop, truck will be fixed, we can continue our trip and only be one day behind. I knew things like this would happen and I was expecting that it would. Maybe not so early into the trip, but I knew it would happen.

We get into my brothers truck and all of sudden the ALARM goes off. We can’t get it to STOP. Put the key in the ignition, does not work. ALARM STILL GOING OFF. Try unlocking several different ways, STILL ALARMING>>>BEEP< BEEP>BEEP.  Try to turn the truck on, the engine has killed itself for safety reasons. It will not start. BEEP > BEEP > BEEP Called my brother and he tells me to use the alarm remote to turn it off. Wait….what? We don’t have the alarm remote, we only have the KEYS!

Oh no….. alarm remote is in Norman….30 minutes away.

I lose it, I start to cry. HULK MAD, HULK SMASH EVERYTHING AROUND. This day has been to much for me and I am at my boiling point.  Our family piles into my fathers truck and we head back to Norman, with two undriveable trucks under our belt for the day. I need a glass of wine and a new day to start.


We slummed at my brothers house all day waiting for the mechanic to call us back and tell us that the truck was fixed. Waiting….turned into waiting longer….our New plan was to leave as soon as the truck was fixed and at least make it to Wichita, Kansas. Mechanic calls and he basically says truck is fixed,  but you should go trade it in while it is still worth something.


Did you know that in some states it is forbidden to sell a car on Sundays? I see that as “we are going to have to wait until Monday” to even begin looking at trucks. Derek sees that as a challenge. So after 30 minutes of research, he is off to go find us a truck. Luckily for him, he already knew exactly what he wanted. Car dealerships close at 9 PM on Saturdays. His plan to find the youngest, smallest  sales guy, the one who has spiked hair and is dressed to the nines. Find him, because he probably has a place he wants to be after work and wants to start his night of partying, not heckling with a bearded man twice his size.


I just got a text “On my way home, coming back empty handed.” Dang it, we will have to wait until Monday. We are going to be stuck in the red mud for a few more days until this is all figured out.

Saturday 11:45 PM

I just heard Derek pull up…..his truck oddly sounds different….different like a diesel.


Note to Blog

Why is there red dirt in Oklahoma? In central Oklahoma, the ground around the area is brick-red in many places. The red color comes from small amounts of ferric (iron) oxide mixed in with the clay and other materials that form the red dirt. Apparently the ferric oxide was present in the same rock formations as the other materials that weathered over the years to form the soil and mixed in with it, giving it the red color. Incidentally, it is very good for growing many crops. If there is ample rain, that is good farm land.

6 thoughts on “We Are Stuck In The Red Mud….Norman, Oklahoma

  1. TN Gma says:

    NOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!! This can’t be happening! So sorry, wish I could do something to help you out. I’m really glad you’re near your family though. I know this is very upsetting, but I had to snicker out loud at your comment about the car salesman. I now have this image of Derek towering over some little midget sized guy who’s wanting to just get rid of Derek so he can go hook up with his girl. 🙂

    I hope your truck problems get resolved soon. I know you’re anxious to be on the road. Good luck and I’m praying (and worrying) for you guys.

  2. Nichole Been says:

    You’re totally right -it’ll all work out before you know it. What an experience and story to tell. We had a huge badass F250 V8 Turbo Diesel -I still miss that thing. Sounded so tough, and boy did it haul. Curious to find out what happens next! Thanks for sharing your adventure. Sorry I never got together with y’all before you left.

  3. Loretta says:

    Sounds like a good case for the Lemon Law. As they say in RV land, plans are always made in jello. On our maiden voyage,which was a mere 8 months ago, we blew a tire on our way to NC. In the end we replaced all 6 on our Class A. Not an expense I was expecting. Everyone says it is the new RVers initiation. I am glad that you are with family, and as I always say ‘you are always where you are meant to be’. Maybe one day we will meet down the road.

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