A Traveler and his Cat exploring America.

Monday, January 31, 2022

Out to Lunch

 With all my food shopping done after hitting up four places to get all I needed which I did not, I wanted to treat myself to lunch.  Independent outdoor eateries were closed because it was Sunday.  So I had to settle for Carl’s (Hardees to you folks east of the Rockies).  I ordered a burger meal with a vanilla shake, and guess what?  Not product for shakes.  This past year I have failed more times than I have been successful in getting a milkshake with a meal.  That is in driving over 7000 miles in America.  I really wish I had kept a scorecard but I simply had no idea it would come to this.

Here I met Victoria, the cashier lady.  When she apologized about having no ice cream I heard her southern accent.

“Where are you from?” I asked.

“Guess” she said.

“In the South is best I can do.  I could listen to you talk all day long.”

With that she said “North Carolina.”

Women with a southern accent are captivating to me. 

We visited a bit more talking about humidity there.  But moving along, look at the plexiglass barrier.  It is useless.  Serves no purpose at all except to post signs about the nationwide supply shortage.  Customer and employee are conducting business (or talking about the South) off to the side.  The other employees are handing your order to you in the open space to the left.  It is absolutely ridiculous.  It never ceases to amaze me every time I come upon this silliness.

Sunday, January 30, 2022

Into Town


I had to psyche myself up for some resupply shopping.  Figured Sunday would be better than any other day.  Church and football might keep some away.

First stop was the trash dumpster a couple miles up the dirt road.  It was overflowing.  The truck comes on Monday.  Oh to just imagine what treasures lie within out of reach.

Next up was the water station across the highway at the other long term stay camp.
No one else there.  Nice.  No dogs barking and harassing me while I filled up.

Then into town and to stop at Patty’s RV Park for propane.  I didn’t really need it in the main tank but the little one gallon bottle for the heater was getting down there so might as well.  Then around the back to the laundry room and return the sock that got into my clothing.  Whoever lost it probably has long since threw out the one lone sock they had or would not return.  I like to think they would return in a week or so, walk in and see that sock pinned to the bulletin board.  “Drat! I threw the other one away!”

No one was in there doing laundry.  It was so tempting to go back in the RV and root around for something  to wash.  Just to take advantage of a good opportunity if for no other reason.

Next was across the highway to Family Dollar.  Not many people inside.  Only had to wait for one person ahead of me in line.  Outside the water machine was broke.  I went next door to Coyote Market that has two machines out front, one of which was out of order.  I had only three bottle to fill.

I couldn’t get everything on my list for Family Dollar.  Inside Coyote was a couple of possibilities if Roadrunner market failed me.  On down the road to Roadrunner Market (below).  Still wasn’t able to complete the list.  I went back to Coyote and finally found some orange juice.  Picked up some A&W Root Beer although it was in the 16oz bottles.  Some is better than none as nowhere were the mini cans to be had.  Drove to the other end of town to Dollar General.  I was able to tick off a few more items and my goodness, they had mini cans of root beer.  I got them as I hadn’t seen any in the last few shopping trips.
I’m set for root beer now.

In the end only three items were left unchecked.  Nothing critical. 

Next, treat myself to lunch.

Saturday, January 29, 2022

Wind. Everyday wind.


I don’t like this.

How does this thing work?

Hello?  I’m out here.

Dad! Open the door!

For the love of the almighty, let me in!

I’m gonna kill you in your sleep if you don’t let me in now!

For days I have been wanting to bake some cornbread in the Dutch Oven 
but it is just too windy everyday.

Friday, January 28, 2022


It is so nice being away from Yuma Road, the dirt road running north towards town.  
Now at our present location it is a quarter mile away.
The ATV traffic is now just a distant buzz every once in awhile.

I don’t know why I put up with it as long as I did.
I don’t know either Dad.  What were you thinking?

The English actor Tom Hardy said “Being alone for a while is dangerous.  It’s addicting.  Once you see how peaceful it is, you don’t want to deal with people anymore.”

I get it.


Thursday, January 27, 2022

The Long Line


On a previous post awhile back I mentioned the line for those waiting to dump their RV holding tanks at only BLM Long Term Stay dump station there is.  Above is a screenshot from a friend’s YouTube video I watched yesterday. You cannot see the head of the line.  I counted vehicles as he slowly drove by.  There were twenty-four in line.

Now back in the day when I had to use dump stations I had the process down.  My record time from stop, get out, hook up to the drain, pull the levers, wait to complete the emptying of the tanks, shut valves, unhook and rinse out the hose, put it away, get back in and drive away was a little over five minutes.  Most of the time it was around ten minutes or so when I wasn’t trying to set a record.

I have watched people fiddle-fart around in the dumping procedure taking as long as twenty minutes or so.  Big class A RVs take a while to empty their much larger holding tanks.  They can have as much as 65 gallons of gray water (washing and showering) and 50 gallons of black water (toilet water).  

For the sake of easy math lets just say the minimum time for each vehicle is ten minutes.  You’re number twenty-four in line like that guy behind the cross hanging from Kevin’s rear view mirror.  That is 240 minutes.  Now there are two lanes and two drains once you get to the dump point.  So we can cut that 240 in half - 120 minutes.  That guy at the very least will be in line for two hours! 

There is one place in town that I know that one can dump their tanks.  They charge $5 to $18 depending on the size of your rig.  If you were the guy behind the cross, would it be worth it to you to pay $18 to dump your tanks?  I am pretty much a tightwad but my time is precious to me.  Those of you who have been with me for awhile know I abhor waiting in lines.  I don’t have to tell you what I would do.

That guy could watch an entire feature length movie on his iPad while waiting.  Think about it!


Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Trash Dumpster Finds


People leave out items for others who may have a use for.  A TV was setting out this day.  Just what I need.  A shame it won’t fit on the bike.  I hope you know I am not serious.  I haven’t watched television in five years.  What an improvement on my well-being that has been.

Before they switched to these large trash containers two years ago, there were the smaller dumpsters the trucks would lift up and dump into the back.  On high wind days all types of debris would be blown all over the desert.  So the large containers are an improvement.  But they prevent people like me digging in finding perfectly good items that people throw away.  That’s okay.  I’m trying to get rid of things, not add to them.  What I took a photo of here inside the dumpster is the framework for a pop-up shade tent.  Every year I find these thrown away.  Usually it because a good wind toppled the thing over bending it all out of shape, no longer usable.  They cost between a hundred and two hundred dollars.

On a previous dumpster run someone left two cans of Amy’s Lentil Vegetable soup there.  Amy’s is good soup.  I love the Tomato Bisque.  I took the cans back home.  Later on a cold day I had one.  It was okay but bland.  It needed a lot of seasoning.  Very filling too and I had to toss the last bit.  I decided to return the other can.  While at the dumpster a lady walked up with her bag of trash.  “Want a can of soup?”  She looked at it.  “Oh, that’s a good brand.  Okay.  Thank you.”  I hope she enjoyed  more than I did.

This has been this way for a couple months now.  I wonder how someone could smash into this to do so much damage.  If the trash guy did this I would think the entire fencing would be laid over, not a perfect single strike point.  With these containers the truck backs up and wrenches the entire container up onto the back of the truck much like tow trucks dragging the entire wrecked car up onto the back frame of the tow truck. The dumpster sits a few feet lower than the dirt in the foreground.  This is a ramp built so one can drive up and toss trash in at head level instead of up and over from ground level.  The cement wall for the ramp of dirt you can see at the lower right.

I know you are in there.

Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Just Like Heaven

 It is so nice in our new spot.  

As people slowly moved into Road Runner camp area during January I slowly grew accustomed to the influx.  Just a gradual adaption I was unaware of.  It isn’t until you distance yourself from a situation do you realize how bad that situation was.  I’m apt to look at myself as a fool for lasting there and putting up with it all as long as I did, but its just human nature to adapt.  

Beans catching the morning sun’s warmth.

Monday, January 24, 2022

You May Think Me Crazy...


...yep, we moved again.  I woke up to the sound of a generator.  Don’t know who.  There were too many suspects around.  The real deciding factor was the ATVs (Annoying Terrestrial Vehicles) going up and down nearby Yuma Road.  I’m just tired of hearing them.  I loaded up the Honda and made a mile and a half away move.  We just want some peace and quiet. 

I can see three RVs from our new location instead of a hundred and three.

Hopefully we can stay here for a week or so unannoyed.
Next winter when we winter here in Quartzsite we will leave for the month of January
when the circus comes to town.  That is the only solution.

Beans is happy.  
New territory to explore and she’s already flushed out three lizards.

This is at our new spot.  I guess it to be a flower?
Any other ideas?

Sunday, January 23, 2022

Hiking Sticks


I sat down and finished two of the three sticks I’ve been hauling around for months.

The one on the left I pulled from the mud of the Yellowstone River at Columbus Montana. 
I discovered it was discolored gray deeper than just the surface.  Oiling the finished stick didn’t reveal any interesting coloration as compared to the other stick from Trout Creek (not in the creek), Montana.

I have seven finished sticks and one left to work on.  I’m not collecting anymore sticks until I get rid of what I have which is my goal this summer.  I have too many.

And for those of you who are keeping score, we had to move again.  This time on the other side of the wash  (Beans’ outdoor litter box) and down a bit.  We were over there where you see the two big RVs on the left who moved in across the road from us.  By the time we got relocated the white RV owner had his Noisemaker 3000 generator set up outside and roaring away.

Saturday, January 22, 2022

RV Graphics


You all are familiar with the outlandish graphics the RV industry puts on their motor homes and trailers.  I don’t understand their thinking.  I feel they are hideous looking to the point of embarrassing.  This was one of the feature points with my 2006 Winnebago View.  The graphics are very minimal.  It was the first year Winnebago made this new model.  They put on a few horizontal stripes, a bit of lettering and called it ‘done’.  For View models years after Winnebago began getting out of control with the graphics where they eventually enveloped the entire vehicle like all the other RVs you see on the road today.

One of the first things I did upon buying my one year old used View was to remove some of the graphics.  As you can see the stripes continued on the the door of the cab, VIEW was on the front hood (bonnet for you UK folks), and Winnebago and a stripe was up on the cabover.

What prompted this post was seeing this near where we are camped.  He loves the graphics, so much so he  had them recreated on his cargo trailer to match.  This is not all that unusual.  I’ve seen it done before.  “Hey, look at me.”

I should mention that I have seen naked RV motor homes.  The owner has had all the graphics removed.  Even some were looking as near new motor homes.  So there are those out there that feel as I do, but they are very few in numbers from what I have seen in my travels.

Friday, January 21, 2022

There Goes the Neighborhood


Later in the day after returning from laundry this group moved in.  I waited to see what we were in for.  I could hear no generators, no music or dog barking.  The only thing was the loud talking each one of the five guys trying to make himself heard over the rest. One guy especially loud.  I can deal with it.  

The next morning was okay.  I can’t expect too much.  Then the two free roaming man-eater Rottweilers cut the distance between our two camps in half standing there barking at me. Wonderful. It was at that point I noticed Mr. Radioman was gone.  Gee, if they ran him off, maybe I am being too tolerant.  
We made a short move of about a hundred yards.  You can see the Honda still at old camp.

This is a nice spot.  Beans has a shade tree and the wash behind her provides some new territory to explore.  I like it too.

Plus it makes for a nice outdoor litter box too.

Thursday, January 20, 2022

Happy Laundry


I went into town yesterday for some grocery shopping.  Not a good time to be doing so since the RV circus is in town.  First stop, Family Dollar.  Not bad.  Not many people inside.  I filled seven water bottles at the water machine outside.  Then I walked across the street (almost getting mowed down by one of those monstrosity RV’s who blew through the red light) to drop off a book at the Animal Shelter Thrift Shop.  Attached to the shop is a small laundry I have used in the past.  The big main laundry facility in town the parking lot was packed.  No surprise there.  I keep this place a secret.

I walked in and one guy was there.  Drat!  I was planning to do laundry on another day before we hit the road again.  But this opportunity was too good to pass up.  I forced myself to drive over, gather up all my dirty duds and get ‘er done.  I know I would feel better having done so and got it over with.

This tall 50 or 60 year old guy was in there.  Hard to guess his age.  Very weather worn looking.  And for good reason too.  He lives on the road walking everywhere he goes.  He has been living this way for 18 years.  Said he has been in all the 48 states.  He gave the house to his wife and said good-bye.  I would have talked with him more but he was a loud talker and it was bothersome to my ears.  The dog is not his but that’s him petting it.  The dog belonged to this long-haired crippled up wacko (in his 30’s) from Colorado.  He was overly too friendly and outgoing wanting to talk to anyone who listened about current events: “I heard there is a war going on in Ethiopia; anyone know anything about it?”; global warming: “You know how hot it is going to be here this summer? One more hot summer and Mother Earth will never recover”; the planet dying in the near future: “for it is written in Revelations” and on and on.  I ignored the guy.  So did Highway Walker.  He went outside to roll up a smoke.  Another couple in there was nicer and responded to him somewhat.  “There’s been a war in Ethiopia forever; it is hot here every summer - normal business .” They gave up when he started in on Scripture. Any other time I may have hopped on his spaceship just to see what planet we would end up on but I wasn’t in the mood that day.

And so you know how common it is to lose a sock when doing laundry?
I came home with a mystery sock.  Not mine.

And just what am I supposed to do with this Dad?

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Depressed and Desperate

 Well they are all here.  This happens every year at this time because of the Big Tent and RV Show in Quartzsite for a two week run.  These folks are in our camp area Road Runner.  I was unaware they all had arrived since we’re at the west end out of sight from it all.

Long ago before I retired I would see these big RV’s on my infrequent vacations.  Boy, that is the life for me.  Travel around with all the comforts of home, stay in RV parks, hang out with other RVers.  I cannot retire soon enough.

Notice all the chairs set up around the evening campfire circle.  Also too the tent and tables set up for potlucks and what have you.

At least that was my dream.  
I was very depressed at the time with my job. That was my desperation to be retired and free showing.  

I wished I could have got on higher ground for a photo of all the satellite dishes aimed skyward in the same direction.  I could see it from a distance as I approached but the camera could not.

When the time neared for retirement fortunately I was with limited means and could not afford an RV of that magnitude.  I know now it would have been a big mistake.  But desperation ruled over common sense at the time.  

Early on in my travels Sinbad and I did stay in RV parks quite frequently.  I just needed time to learn what fit best for me.  I don’t fault these folks any.  They are happy and enjoy their lifestyle.  
Good on them.  

They are largely different groups owning the same brand of RV and have these annual get-togethers.  I attended one soon after buying the Winnebago View.  It was okay and I learned a lot but I never attended another View/Navion annual get-together.  There is a group who camps together here in Quartzsite during show time.  I’ve ridden the Honda over there in years past, just to look around.  Never stayed or camped with them.  Mine is the first generation of which only the first two or three years of production fits.  All those since are very fancy with a lot of bells and whistles.  It is for us first generation View and Navion owners we are like simple folk from the other side of the tracks.

I had a bit of a time finding my way back home after touring the big camps.  I lost my navigation points among the crowd of motor homes.  As you can see, at our end of Road Runner nothing like that is going on.  Mr. Radioman is still here in the distance behind that tree.  I can occasionally hear him at times.  With all the ruckus going on at the big RV camps I’ll not complain.  We could have had a big encampment move in near us.