05.08.13 My hometown – Madison, South Dakota

Bruce Springsteen sang the song “My hometown” and that kept running through my mind as we drove through the little town that is now “our hometown”.  If you’re driving up I-29 in South Dakota take exit 109 and hang a left, go down about 20 miles and you’ll enter the wonderful little town of Madison.  They don’t know how to spell their town name right, but they’ve been spelling it that way for so long we’ll just let it slide!  We discovered that Dakota State University is in Madison, which means we’ve moved from one college town to another college town!  We took a couple of pictures there also.  Hope you enjoy this little scenic tour of “our new hometown!”

Lake County Courthouse in Madison
Madison Public Library
A big old building on the Dakota State University campus
One of the entrances to Dakota State University in Madison
The offices of My Dakota Address where our mail will be forwarded from

madison4 madison6  madison9 madison10  madison12

Welcome to Madison sign – we caught it on the way out of town so it’s last!

05.07.13 We’re now South Dakota residents :) goodbye Louisiana residency :(

Twas a sad and emotional day today turning in our treasured Louisiana drivers licenses and getting our shiny new South Dakota licenses.   Kind of felt like we are turning our backs on the state of our birth.  Still more shedding of our Louisiana connections tomorrow when we register our vehicles, register to vote and change our auto insurances to South Dakota.    We would have gotten all that finished today if I hadn’t slept until 11:30…………….  Don’t remember when that happened last!  Roy was up and working on things at 7 am and checked a few times to make sure I wasn’t dead and finally at 11:30 he shook my leg until I woke up.  Don’t know how much longer I would have slept if he hadn’t woken me.

If you are reading this to learn about RV life for your own use please note that you’ll need two forms of identification other than your driver’s license to get your SD drivers license.  In our case we used our passports and our social security cards.  Unfortunately we were in Madison, SD (about 45 miles from Sioux Falls where Dora is parked) when we found this out.  This meant we had to drive back to Sioux Falls to get our passports and social security cards out of the safe.  At least the driver’s license place was in Sioux Falls so we took care of that today.  We’ll drive back to Madison tomorrow to take care of the rest.   Terry at My Dakota Address had all the forms and filled them out so we’d be ready at the Drivers License office and she’ll take care of registering our vehicles in SD.  We’ve found a State Farm agent in Madison where we’ll stop after we’re finished at My Dakota Address.

We are using our Minnesota address, 10176 Bay Club Drive, Kabetogama, MN 56669,  until around September 1st and then we’ll switch to our permanent mail forwarding address which will be 110 E. Center Street, #2301, Madison, SD 57042.  These people don’t know how to spell Madisyn properly but we’ll give them a pass on that!

pink roadWe’ve done a lot of driving today and we both agree we really like what we’ve seen of South Dakota.  It is very clean and everyone has been very nice to us.  The long stretches of highway we drove had open fields as far as you could see on both sides.  I wondered as we drove along who it would feel to live in one of the very few homes we saw along the way.  We’re use to having neighbors semi close by and most of these folks would have to travel miles to see their neighbor. The road between Sioux Falls and Madison was pink in color (see the picture) Just another part of our USA to learn about!  The little town of Madison reminded me somewhat of downtown Hammond and the surrounding areas looked like Old Metairie where Roy grew up off Metairie Road.

Mini Sodas

We stopped at a Wal-Mart and Roy took a picture of some “mini sodas” which he thinks is like Minnesota so I’m including one of his pictures here!

It’s now Wednesday and we’re getting ready to head back to Madison to complete our transition to South Dakota residency.  I plan to take some pictures of the town and will post them in the next blog.

Have a great Wednesday and Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!

05.06.13 Kansas back to Missouri, then Iowa and finally South Dakota! May 5th – 6th

Arrived in Linn Valley, Kansas at 4 pm on Sunday May 5th (Cinco de Mayo) and stayed overnight at Linn Valley Lakes.  This is another Coast to Coast Resort so our stay only cost us $9 for the night to cover their  additional electrical charge.  While it was a far cry from the professionally maintained resort we left in Branson it is nice, quiet and a safe place to stay for the night.  Plus there are no street lights to be seen and the night sky was full of stars!  We slept really good that night in the solid darkness.

south dakota signMonday, May 6th we left Kansas and headed to our new home state of South Dakota.  If you weren’t reading our blog when I wrote about choosing a domicile state I’ll briefly tell you why we’re becoming South Dakota residents.  Since we are traveling from state to state we have the opportunity to choose a state for our residency that has the best benefits for us.  After a lot of research we chose South Dakota.  Louisiana has the first or second ranked (highest) auto insurance rates in the country.  This is a big reason to take advantage of choosing another state to be our home state.  South Dakota has much lower auto insurance rates (for both Boots the truck and Dora the RV).  The most recent information I could find ranked them 47th (third from the lowest).  They also don’t charge you taxes on your vehicle to register in their state if you’ve already paid at least that much in your original state, which we have.  They have very good mail forwarding services and we’re signing up with My Dakota Address in Madison, SD.  There are other ones but since this one is in Madison and our little granddaughters name is the same but spelled Madisyn we chose that one!  This gives us a street mailing address so we can get our driver licenses, vehicle registrations and insurance.  We’ll also register to vote there and they defer the jury duty requirement if you’re called for service when on the road, until a time that you’re back in South Dakota.  South Dakota does not have a huge residential population but their population that includes folks like us is pretty high We originally wanted to be Tennessee residents but the reason we chose to not be Tennessee residents is that they did not have a well known (or basically any) mail forwarding service which would give us a street address to obtain the other things with.  South Dakota does require that you spend one night there so tonight’s stay will take care of that.  We’ll stay Tuesday night as well because of the length of time it will take us to take care of all that’s involved in becoming state residents.

Rosalyn in front of some sort of teepee at the Rest Area right inside of the South Dakota line

We drove for 7 hours today over a period of 10 hours.  Yes Roy took his mid-day nap and we just took our time today stopping many times since it was a lot of ground to cover.   We’ve traveled over 1,100 miles so far.  The scenery in Kansas was wonderful but Iowa really surprised me by how not pretty it was at least from the Interstate.  The trees looked like something that belonged in The Raven with black birds circling around.  Something I’m finding interesting is that all the trees are just now getting their first blooms of spring like our oak trees were doing over a month ago in Louisiana.  When we left LA our oak trees were in full bloom yet here they are just little buds!

We just pulled into Tower Campground in Sioux Falls, SD and were greeted by Judy.  She and her husband own the campground and were very welcoming and know all about the process for RVers to become South Dakota residents.   We’ll go first thing in the morning to Madison to get our new address and then back here to get a receipt from her with our new address on it.  That’s a requirement to get our drivers license, registrations, etc.  This is a Passport America campground so we paid more than our Coast to Coast campgrounds but it’s half of their regular rate which for a 50 amp site is $40 a night so for two nights we paid $40.

I’m cooking parmesan crusted Tilapia and baked potatoes for dinner and it’s smelling so good after a long day on the road.  Ya’ll have a great evening, I’m off to eat!

Ya’ll come back now ya’ hear!