Previously, I mentioned how our motorhome, Discovery, carries a pocket dimension, an extra-dimensional space sorta like the Tardis. What I hadn’t realized is Discovery also has it’s own rules for time as well.
Maybe it’s in the way it bends space which affects that continuum. Or the sheer mass hurtling down the highway gathers enough momentum to push it toward relativistic speeds. Or maybe outside the cab was the frame of reference and the world was moving at light speed… How does that work again?
Anyway, we departed from our most recent away mission expecting a one and a half hour trip home – exactly the time it had taken to get to Fort Richardson State Park in Jacksboro Texas. What occurred was a loss of approximately four hours which I’m unable to account for.
Naturally, with a trip to a remote area on a lonely highway and a vague grasp of what exactly transpired, I’ve made an appointment for a colonoscopy to search for any probes. Barring that, I can only try to reconstruct the events as they occurred.
I woke early on Sunday and sat down to write this article, an article which is only now being penned on Monday morning. A feeling of unease had settled in and a fatigue which I couldn’t shake. By nine, I had surrendered and fallen back asleep.
I woke again at eleven. Maaike was up drinking her coffee. She gazed drowsily out the window and said, “I feel tired still.”
It was an indication that I wasn’t the only one. Our experience in the RV that weekend had drained us. An odd feeling, it was almost as though we had…relaxed.
(Note: We do have a CO sensor onboard. No damage to the life support systems detected…)
Our departure scheduled for two p.m., we set about preparing for early lift off. We’d received report from the digital mines of irregularities in worker efficiency and needed to investigate. Slides in, equipment stowed, landing gear up, I hazarded a trip outside to check the tire pressure.
Overnight, environmental conditions on the surface had changed dramatically. From a ninety degree high to one closer to seventy, I wasn’t surprised to find the pressure in one of the front tires lower than normal. We were however prepared.
Or so we thought.
A quick patch into the available compressed air systems (of which there are several – ride suspension, brakes…) and I set about filling the front driver’s side tire. This simple procedure soon became a two person job.
“I think we’re losing air?”
“Do we need the generator on?”
Loud hiss and a screech. “There’s pressure…”
Unable to complete this seemingly simple task, we decided to head for the dump station, empty our biohazard tanks, and dock a nearby Love’s.
By the time we entered orbit at Love’s only twenty miles away (and we did indeed enter orbit, circling at least four times…) it was nearly two o’clock CST. Three hours and neither of us could quite say where they’d gone.
We headed for the truck lanes and the air hoses. A public space, each one had a different attachment. We tried theirs, tried some of our own. More time slipped away as I crouched at the tire, holding the fitting in place on the valve and checking our progress of which we were making exactly none.
“I could’ve sworn the pressure already read 112 psi, didn’t it?”
Time seemed to stand still. Then jump. Air hissed from the tire and explosively sighed from the hose. My fingers grew numb. We tried all the pumps, each lane bleeding into the next like some sort of vicious Groundhog Day moment minus the laughs.
“Is it really four o’clock?”
We were sitting in ten forward eating sandwiches. I had no clear idea how I’d gotten there. The tire pressure locked in some sort of galactic stalemate, we surrendered and moved on toward home base.
Sometime during night, we arrived home. I couldn’t say exactly when. I do know, when I checked the tire one last time, the valve cap was gone. Stolen by whatever interstellar scoundrel who’d stolen our time no doubt.
My guess is, when I find the cap, I’ll find the true culprit…**
**Or, as it turns out, I’ll figure out you can’t violate the laws of physics. Even in Discovery….
It doesn’t matter how long you crouch at the tire, you simply can’t transfer 115 PSI into a tire with a hose putting out say 110 PSI.
The front tires of an RV are under high pressure. Much higher than a passenger car tire, and even those on semi trucks. The vehicle calls for 115 PSI cold on the front tires (we were just under 100 PSI that morning after sitting parked all weekend). This is higher than many air compressors will output.
Even the outlet under the RVs own hood doesn’t reliably provide that kind of pressure, though it will on the upside of the compression cycle. But as soon as pressure reaches around 120 to 125 PSI, the system bleeds off extra air on it’s own and restarts the cycle by drifting down to 90 PSI.
What you can do to control this a bit is tap the breaks enough to drop the pressure down to 90 which will restart the cycle. Pressure will build, and when it reaches the point to where it is higher than that of your tires, you can start filling them with air while listening for the tell tale hiss of the system automatically bleeding and the pressure dropping.
There’s a really useful video here on the subject here.