5.24.19, Almost home

We ended up moving last night about 11 p.m. because it was way toooo noisy between the two big rigs. (Don’t know what we were thinking.πŸ€”) Sounded like they had their generators or their engines running, not sure, but we had to move. Turns out, up the street Denny’s and Flying J share RV parking for travellers. Yay!!

My view this morning. Look at that sunshine.😎🌞

I woke up well rested ready to push on. The sun is shining!! Oh how I have missed the sun warming my face!! I have not felt the sun on my face like this since we left Larry and Donna’s house in Penn Valley, CA on May 9th. Oh, WELCOME, WELCOME, WARM SUNSHINE ON MY FACE!πŸ˜†πŸ˜Ž

A tidbit of info for my overseas followers: The city of Barstow serves as a popular midway point for drivers traveling between Los Angeles, California and Las Vegas, Nevada (aka Sin City) as well as Bullhead City/Laughlin.

We are heading south bound on the 15 to Los Angeles.

I spied this metal ice chest on the back of this jeep. I have not seen one in YEARS. Just thought it was an interesting sight.πŸ˜‰

California highway views.

Surprisingly the southbound highway is not too busy this morning… yet. Although the closer to the city we get I see the freeway getting busier heading the opposite direction. That stands to reason, it’s a holiday weekend. The weekend warriors will be out and about today.

Since our traveling style thus far consists of “flying by the seat of our pants” we wanted to be home before the warriors hit the road. I’m sure they’ve made reservations to their favorite getaway spots. We want to be off the road before all of that congestion and (possible) road rage hits. 🎭

As we passed through Bullhead City/Laughlin yesterday one could feel the energy and see the preparation in anticipation of the weekend crowds. Shiny, clean jestskis galore we’re lined up on several lots ready and waiting for the warriors arrival. Hotels were flashing their weekend specials, various stores had eye catching dispays in their windows. I spied several new advertising signs, some remodeling and fresh coats of paint. The town is ready for the invasion this holiday weekend.πŸ₯ΎπŸ‘ŸπŸŠβ€β™‚οΈπŸŠβ€β™€οΈπŸš—πŸš™

Bullhead City is ready, and waiting

Nice mountain view as we get closer to the cities.

It’s still early, about 9:30 a.m. and the freeway looks like this.

I DID NOT MISS THIS TRAFFIC. The closer we get to our home town the thicker traffic is becoming.πŸ₯ΊπŸ€ͺπŸ˜– I do not drive in this mess unless I absolutely have to. Craig does the majority of the driving. In fact, typically if we leave Carson, he drives.

This traffic is one of the main reasons I am so ready to leave the L.A. area (and the cost of living)…too many people have moved here.πŸ˜‘ It is far tooo congested.

OBSERVATION: We noticed a vast cost difference in fuel as we traveled. Diesel ranged from $2.99 to $4.99 / gallon and propane was $2.79 to $3.99. / pound. (I think its sold by the pound.) 🀯πŸ€ͺ Of course, California is on the upper end of those scales.πŸ˜–

Well, we are close to home.🏑 We stopped in Lakewood, the next town over, for a snack. Yang Chow 2 has the BEST slippery shrimp. The original Yang Chow is in China Town, downtown L.A. this is a mini version of the restaurant with limited menu items. But their most POPULAR menu item is their slippery shrimp. It is a little sweet and spicy. Delish!Alas, they were closed.😫 They don’t open until 11. Oh well, we are going home to unload.

It’s late morning and we unloaded the vital stuff; toiletries, clothes and food items. I will wash the fridge, stove, kitchen and clean the bathroom tomorrow. Shorty will get a good bath and the floors and rugs will be cleaned. Yea, shorty will get a good cleaning inside and out. Tomorrow.

After unloading the vital stuff we headed to lunch. We both wanted BBQ so we headed to Lucille’s BBQ Smokehouse in Torrance, CA. after a good lunch we are back home.

It is warm and sunny today in Carson. Ummm….🌞SUNSHINE. I have missed you.

Our cats

I found one of our cats basking in sun in our backyard. We have two 14 year old cats; Cali and Boots, sisters. Neither of them came to me right away when I called them. They are a little skiddish around strangers. It took them a few minutes to warm up to me. They can be moody girls.😸😾

I’m here with Shorty finishing this post. This is where I come to write, think or when I just want some quiet or alone time. Shorty is MY LADY CAVE. He is the other guy who gets my time and attention. πŸ₯°

Well, I guess I’ll strip the beds and go in the house and watch a movie with Craig.

Recap tomorrow…


Homeward Bound 5.23.19

We got up this morning to the smell of home made waffles, bacon and eggs, coffee and oj. πŸ₯“πŸ₯šOur visit with Mark and Roxanne was great as usual. They are such gracious hosts. We feel more like family than guests. πŸ₯°πŸ’ That is a gift! Such great friends!!Before we left we had to refil our water bottles. Craig hooked up our Kangen Water machine in the laundry room and filled a few containers for the road.We will have this unit installed under the kitchen sink in Shorty so that we will always have our alkalized water available when we travel. But for now we hook it up as needed – at almost any sink.Thank you Mark and Roxanne for showing us around town. We had a GREAT time as always! Let’s work on that Alaskan cruise and that week in Utah at the Natiomal parks! Until next time.😁 πŸ₯°So far Arizona is high on our list of places to move to. We both like Prescott.πŸ˜πŸ‘On our way out of town we drove through the small town of Chino Valley to look at some homes. We stopped at the Chamber of Commerce and spoke with a volunteer about the community. She shared that most of the homes were built on an acre or so, which was nice. But like Roxanne said, the town lacked “charm.”πŸ˜‘Heading West on Highway 40 we see alot of open plains. Tut-tut, it looks like rain.🌧Saw the signs for Historic Route 66.No, we didn’t take Historic Route 66; we’ve driven it before. We opted for Highway 40, it’s a little more direct.Highway as far as we can see.We stopped in Kingman, AZ for dinner. Cracker Barrel has some GOOD fried chicken!Then from From Kingman to Bullhead city.Neither of us had been to these cities and took this route out of curiosity.Observation: In all of the states we visited we saw Dollar General, Family Dollar, & Dollar Tree stores. Hum, might have to look into their stock.πŸ€”From Kingman to Buckeye City, AZ.Some dusk/evening views.Craig being the “destination driver” that he is was determined to get to Barstow, CA. It’s 10 p.m; we made it.We are in the Carle’s Jr. parking lot that provides RV n big rig spaces. We are parked between two big rigs. I didn’t drive but I am tired and a feeling a bit irritated.😫 I need some sleep.😴😴 g’night.πŸ˜‰

Arizona, 5.21.19 & 5.22.19

I was awakened this morning about 5 a.m. by strong winds rocking Shorty to and fro. It is COLD out. πŸ₯ΆThere is snow on the ground.

The William’s Arizona welcome sign.πŸ–

Last night we grabbed a bite at a little restaurant in town and walked around for a bit. IT WAS COLD!πŸ₯Ά

This morning I see the hotel parking lot we slept in is a Ramada Inn, shared with a Rodeo Restaurant & Sports Bar. Thank you from two weary travellers.

It’s almost 8 a.m. and the sun is shining bright, but it is still COLD outside.

I spy with my little eye a McDonald’s in the distance and a Latte with my name on it!! β˜•πŸ˜Š

Destination today Prescott! 😁 Looking forward to our visit with friends Mark and Roxanne!! Haven’t seen them since January.

Sidebar: when traveling to different states one cannot predict what the weather may be. Sure, I checked the weather in the states and major towns I anticipated we’d visit. I checked annual averages, seasons, etc. but the weather was colder and much wetter than I anticipated. Fortunately we packed everything from coats, scarves and hiking boots, to flip flops, shorts and swimsuits. I guess what I’m saying is that we were ready for whatever Mother Nature threw our way. πŸ˜‰ Although, I was hoping for a campsite with a jacuzzi or a natural hot spring to take a dip.😁We left Williams and headed to Sedona.

Here are a couple of videos, so you could feel like you are riding along with us. If u listen closly you could hear Craig whistling to the song “It’s working” by William Murphy.

Here is another video for your ride along pleasure.😁 watch this guy in the truck stop in front of us to make a left turn.😳

We entered the beautiful town of Sedona, but we could not find any RV parking so we drove around for a bit, then continued down the highway hunting for fuel.

More highway views.

Fuel

We considered filling the tank in Williams, but the fuel cost was $3.99 a gallon.😳 At that point we were just above half tank which is my comfort level. Anything below half tank and I begin to feel like this: 😱😫🀯 anxious. We found a town between Sedona and Prescott that had fuel for $3.19 a gallon. By this time we were at a quarter tank. Can we say ANXIOUS? 😱 My wallet was happy we waited tho.πŸ˜‰

We stopped in Prescott Valley to dump our grey and black tanks and fill our propane tank. I spied this fun toy across the street.

This little four-seater beauty reminded me of the time we went Razor riding with our friends Carle and Joyce in Lone Pine.πŸ‘And then I saw this georgous red and black beast.

Shorty next to this gorgeous beast.

It is a beauty of a beast, but Shorty suites us just fine!πŸ₯°On to Prescott to see our friends!

We arrived at the home of our friends Mark and Roxanne. It was so nice to see them! We sat around the dining room table catching up, talking and laughing. We reminisced about the Panama Canal cruise and talked about taking an Alaskan cruise together. We then went for a ride around town and took a quick walk at Granite Dells Lake it was beautiful! It was cold or we would have stayed out there longer.

We got a tour of the Bucky’s Yavapai Indian Casino and enjoyed some beautiful city views. We sat in the lounge, enjoyed a glass of wine and laughed some more. We dined at a downtown Prescott restaurant and talked and laughed some more. We laugh ALOT when the four of us are together! It was getting late and we were tired. We got back to the house and hit the hay!

Wednesday, 5.22.19

We slept in this morning. After a quick breakfast Roxanne and I went to the grocery store and then the 4 of us went for a ride to Jerome’s.

We explored and walked around this quaint little artsy, hippie town and chatted with some of the local artists. We were impressed with the Nelly Bly store. They claim to have the largest collection of kaleidoscopes for sale. They were quite impressive!

Craig peeking in one.

Here is a pic of us in kaleidoscope form. Just look really closely to see our photo. It was really cool!!

A local sculptor was working in the little studio behind Craig.

Map of the tiny town of artists.

Creativity. Cool sculpture.

This was an odd piece of art. An old cigarette machine. The doll heads were a little creepy.🀯

These were the steps heading down to the sculptor studio.

After Jerome we took a ride to the town of Cottonwood. It was a windy mountain ride back to the house.

Later in the evening we had dinner of cajun sausage and shrimp with veggies and cornbread. Delish!

Craig and Mark played a couple of games of pool downstairs.

We wrapped up the evening playing Phase 10, a card game.

Clearly I need more practice taking selfies…Craig was playing too but I accidently cut him off.😳

Our time with Mark and Roxanne is always so enjoyable! When we arrived Roxanne said “You know where your room is, make yourself at home.” And we do!! Such GREAT people. We all get along so well!! They are an added BONUS should we decide to move to Prescott. πŸ˜‰πŸ˜

Well, our trip is winding down. 😫We will look at the map in the morning to see which route we will take back home to So. CA. We want to be back home before the Memorial Day traffic hits the road.

Sidebar: not sure why but the formatting gets a little wonky and runs together at times. I need to figure that out. Maybe because I have been using my phone rather than my laptop? IDK…

Grand Canyon, 5.20.19

We spent the night in Bluff, UT at the Cadillac Ranch RV Park. It rained all night. It stopped about 5 this morning. I’ve gotta say, we have encounterd alot of rain 🌧since we left CA.πŸ€” However, the one good thing about all of this rain is that it’s washing the majority of the dead bugs off of Shorty’s face! πŸ‘πŸ˜‰

Fixing breakfast of sausage and eggs this morning, this little tear drop was the view from my kitchen window.

To put it in perspective, I am 5’4″ and am as tall as this little guy. Oh, better yet, it’s about the size of a Volkswagen Beetle.🐞😁 It sure is cute!

We took a walk around camp b4 leaving and saw thousands of birds flying around the little marsh/pond in the center of camp. Look closely and listen, they sing so beautifully.

We saw this little bonfire area at the end of camp with a GREAT view.

The highway to Mexican Hat, UT. It was a one gas station town.

Mexican hat Rock.

More in Utah than in any other state have we come over a horizon and both have said “WOW!” with our mouths wide open.😲 Spectacular landscapes!!

The Cadillac Ranch Camp camp host suggested we take highway 163, and noted that between Mexican Hat and Monument Valley to look for a “Forest Gump” sign. He said that this is the portion of highway that Forest Gump ran down in the movie. We didn’t see the sign, but it was a nice stretch of highway.

We ran in to some rain, hail, winds and snow flurries on the highway. It was INTERESTING to drive thru these weather changes as we left Utah and entered Arizona. I took a couple of videos.😳

Snow flurrys in Tonalea, AZ

We saw this natural wind sculptured rock near the border of Utah and Arizona. The landscape is stunning.

As we traveled thru Utah and Arizona I saw many Native American families living in old motorhomes surrounded by plywood. It really hurt my heart and made me angry at the same time to see the Native American people living on THEIR land in such squalor and substandard conditions.😑 😭😫

It took me a few miles to get over this sight. I had to take some time to pray for the people, reflect on my life and thank God for how truly blessed I am. You see, I have about 49% of Native American blood running throughly my veins… I felt a connection. πŸ˜ͺ

Moving forward, we spent the afternoon at the Grand Canyon taking in those breathtaking views.Too many pix to post. These were truly postcard views. It was about 36 degrees so we moved thru the sights quickly!On our way to Williams, AZ we saw the most incredible sunset and stunning desert sky.😲We ended up spending the night in a hotel parking lot near the highway along with a couple other RVers and a couple of big rigs. πŸ˜‰

Arches National Park, 5.19.19

We arrived at our destination this morning and were met with a line of many other travellers waiting to enter the park. I am grateful that I purchased the Senior Park Pass! Being a senior citizen certainly has its perks!πŸ˜πŸ§“πŸ‘΅Once in the park we saw the most AMAZING, BREATHTAKING and PICTURESQUE views!! Postcard worthy; the following pix are a tease and do no justice to what we got to experience.

This place is AMAZING. A must see.

As we were driving down the highway toward Moab there were some beautiful cloud formations. Craig said that some of them reminded him of the opening of the Simpson’s. πŸ˜‚πŸ€£ Here are a couple he spied. What do you think?πŸ€”

The 🎡SIMPSON’S…🎢

Here is an interesting sight…Further down the highway we saw “A Hole in the Rock.”

Do you see that speck on the top right corner of the rock?

Look closely. A razor was up there! 😳

We drove through Moab and have deduced that Moab is an ATV, jeep and Razor city!! One can rent any of those vehicles, and there are an ABUNDANCE of trails to explore. The views spectacular as well.

It has been EXTREMELY WINDY since we left the Arches. Poor Shorty was being pushed to and fro!😳 It made me a bit nervous.πŸ˜– But then I remember that Craig is a retired professional package car driver and I have faith and confidence in his driving ability.😁

Sidebar: Now, I don’t frequent fast food places but I have heard that McDonald’s has good coffee from a few people. So, we stopped to grab a quick cup and I opted for the Vanilla Latte. OMG😳 I am a fan. β˜•πŸ‘

Snow capped mountains have become a familiar site for almost the duration of our journey. They are quite beautiful. The weather these last several days has been in the 50’s and 40’s but the landscape has been so phenomenal that we can overlook the temperature, providing we are warm, cozy and snung with Shorty.πŸ‘

Sidebar: I wave πŸ™‹β€β™€οΈ at other RVers. 😁 Just sayin’. Craig used to look at me and shake his head.πŸ˜‚πŸ€£ It doesn’t phase him anymore.😚 Most wave back.πŸ–

We have passed many sleepy little towns on this journey; some coastal, some mountain, some farmland. We have noticed a common thread, “Family Dollar” stores are in many of these little towns. Just an observation.

This is one of my FAVORITE pix from our journey so far, Shorty basking in the moonlight.

It’s raining 🌧again. Good night.😴

Utah, 5.18.19

We woke up to, yep you guessed it, rain. After it stopped we walked to the Walmart to pick up some eggs and a few provisions.

We have stayed in alot of Walmart parking lots and will typically patronize the establishment and you know what?! I never see “those” interesting Walmart people referenced on Facebook. I always meet the friendliest, most helpful staff and generally friendly, normal looking people.😁 Idk about those Facebook posts… πŸ€”.

Some pix on our way to Arches National Park.The pix don’t do this landscape justice and I have way too many to share.

SIDEBAR: OH!! I forgot to mention that while we were at Yellowstone I spoke with a seasonal park ranger who told me about summer park ranger and other seasonal positions. He provided me with a website to look for potential seasonal jobs, and he gave me his email. He told me that they are always looking for retired seniors and college kids for seasonal positions. CHECK. βœ… This is something I will DEFINATELY LOOK INTOβ€Ό #EXCITED.πŸ‘πŸ˜ I have wanted to be a park ranger for years. I have always said that if I had a do-over in life, I’d be a Park Ranger.🐿🐻🐏🦌🦝🦊

Arches National Park

We arrived at Arches National Park late afternoon and popped in the visitor center to take a look around. As we were walking to our rig we noticed a Winnebego View and stopped to take a look at it. Just as we hopped in our rig the owners of the View approached their vehicle and we started chatting and comparing notes. The four of us hit it off; the conversation flowed easily as we toured each others coaches. Matthew shared some knowledge with Craig about our TV and tips on how best to get service.

We learned that Matthew and Rachel are 10 months into their RV journey heading to NY to celebrate their nuptuals with family and friends.

They were on the hunt for a place to park their rig for the night as were we. So, we decided to camp together in Canyonlands National Park. There is plenty of (BLM) Bureau of Land Management land that provides free camping locations. We followed them to an off road location and turned off the paved road to a rocky dirt road and drove for a bit. We settled on a little plateau with a great view.That is Shorty on the left and Matthew and Rachel’s View on the right with the most amazing moon in the center. We each settled in and prepared dinner and dined outside and chatted. Their mellow dog Whiskey joined us.

I had never used the convection oven before so I asked Rachel if she could teach me. I naturally assumed that she knew how because they had been living in their rig for 10 months. Surley she knows how it works, right?! She absolutely did, and graciously taught me.πŸ‘ In fact Matthew has actually made bread in their convection oven. πŸ‘πŸžπŸ₯–πŸ˜With this newly acquired knowledge I made cornbread to accompany the Polska and cabbage for dinner. The cornbread came out surprisingly well thanks to Rachel and Matthew!!We met another young couple parked across from us camping in their truck, Chris and Lea (and their dog Holmes.) We chatted at their camp and we saw a bit of the sunset. BUT, we were blessed to see the most AMAZING moon rise. We all ended up staring at it enjoying it in all of it’s glory. 😚 None of us had ever seen such a captivating sight! It was truly a magical, being in the right place at the right time, moment.Earlier Matthew had started a great campfire so we gathered around it to warm up. The six of us chatted and shared stories of our families, travels, health, water and life in general. Oh, and Whiskey and Holmes joined in too! πŸ•πŸ˜We exchanged social media and contact information and decided to call it a night about 11 p.m.

Craig and I agree that this was the BEST day we had on the road since we left California.πŸ‘πŸ‘