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Let there be . . . FAST Internet! (& cheap too)

Our New Cable Modem for Our Park Model

Our New Cable Modem for Our Park Model

Those of you in a Sticks & Bricks (i.e, a house) may want to tune out now and read a book.

This post is intended for those of us on the road — or at least for those on the road for a significant amount of time during the year.

Internet access is no longer a “luxury” on the road. Most folks who RV full time do their banking, bill paying, etc via the Internet.

Imagine trying to pay bills using Snail Mail (i.e, the Post Office) . . . Tuesday you’re in Indiana, Thursday you’re in Missouri, and Sunday you’re in Kansas. Paper bills aren’t practical while traveling — unless you like late payment fees.

Anyway, besides banking & billing, Internet access is required for web browsing, email, Facebook accounts, Netflix, yada, yada, . . .

If you live in a S&B, you probably have access to cable TV like Time Warner or Comcast. If so, you probably also have access to high-speed Internet over that cable.

High-speed broadband via cable is the Holy Grail of Internet access. Why? Typically, it’s fast, cheap, and . . .  there are no data limits or “caps”. This means you could Netflix yourself to death without fear of “running out” of data.

Our Park Model's Microwave Radio Internet Antenna

Our Park Model’s Microwave Radio Internet Antenna

NOT SO ON THE ROAD

While traveling, you’re probably getting Internet access through a cellular network — Verizon, AT&T, or Sprint. (Some folks use a satellite network like MotoSat or iDirect, but cellular is the most popular.)

When you access the Internet using either a cellular or a satellite network, you will have a limit on the amount of data you can download. For example, we have a 40GB Verizon plan. This means we can download up to 40GB per month.  If we go over that amount, it’ll cost us.

Verizon's "sliding" Data Plans -- The more you want, the more you'll pay

Verizon’s “sliding” Data Plans — The more you want, the more you’ll pay

How much is 40GB worth of data? For many people, it’s plenty. For us, hopefully, it’s enough.

Downloading a HD (High Definition) iTunes movie, might cost you 5GB — just for one movie.

Downloading (or streaming) a 2-hour HD Netflix movie might be around 3.6GB — again, that’s just one movie.

Long story short — if you like watching movies over the Internet, stay at home.

Anyway, besides our Verizon cellular plan, while staying in our park model, we tried “Microwave Radio” Internet access for $39.95/month. It’s been a disappointment because it’s slow — about 2Mbps download speed. By comparison, our Verizon 4G LTE cellular plan typically is over 10Mbps. However, Microwave Radio doesn’t have a data limit. There is that.

Today, however, the Holy Grail arrived at our park model — we had a cable modem installed.

Cable Modem Internet Speeds

Cable Modem Internet Speeds

Crazy Horse Campground supplies free basic cable to all the park models. Several park model owners have been able to hook up cable modems to their free cable and get fast & cheap Internet access.

But until today — and thanks to a Cable Guy Hero — we haven’t been able to use a cable modem. Until today.

Now we’re smoking! Fast, cheap, and no data caps (at least while we’re in our park model).

 

WHAT WE’RE DRINKING TONIGHT

A wonderfully buttery Chardonnay . . .

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A Senior Moment

MockingjayIn keeping with our web site URL name . . .

So we’re at one of those multiplex movie theaters with some friends watching the new Hunger Games movie.

About halfway through the movie, it’s time for a bathroom break. Luckily, the restroom is a short distance away.

But when I return to the movie, I can’t find Jan or our friends. What to do?

Should I start whispering “Jan, Jan?” No. I’ll just sit down, watch the movie, and keep looking during the movie’s dull spots. At worst, I’ll just wait until the movie ends, and find them later.

But then the end-of-the-movie credits start rolling on screen . . . what the hell? How long was I in the bathroom? Did I fall in? Knocked unconscious?

I leave the movie hoping to find Jan & company when they exit. Then I notice  something . . .

As I look down the hallway at the other movies that are playing . . . there’s another Hunger Games movie!

That’s right — I turned left instead of right when I came out of the bathroom and ended up in the wrong theater.

December Rain

California Storm Heads East

California Storm Heads East

Drizzle and low temperatures (highs in the 70s, lows in the 50s) . . . well, low temps for us.

When I look at my old home town, Green Bay, it’s a different story — highs in the 30s, lows in the teens.

When it rains here, it stinks. It smells dusty and metallic. Really odd. Locals may be used to it, but I’m used to Wisconsin Spring rains which smell fresh.

Some cloudy photos . . .

View from Our Street

View from Our Street

 

Western View from Our Porch

Western View from Our Porch (our new red hummingbird feeder is getting some regular visitors)