2019 January Search for Sunshine

At Last! Bumming Around Again…

Day 1, 2019-1-24, Thursday, home to Tulare, CA via CA99: 155 miles

I was sooo overdue to enjoy that road-bum lifestyle! After all, it had been four months since my Iowa Loop adventure when I had last bummed around the country. Our monthly adventures since then had been family get-togethers – those wonderful gatherings I so enjoy, but am expected to be responsible and dependable. But… I planned to wander the back roads and just follow them at my leisure to warm weather!

I’d like to have left home with grey skies or rain or something less than sunny and bright, but we’d had a few sunny days leading up to my departure. Still we’d had a good, wet winter overall, and I hoped it would continue. But I didn’t want to be there for it!


2019-1-22a coach prepPresenting the freshly washed Big Blue II, ready for my annual adventure into Texas for some warmer weather.

The preparations for my Texas adventure took about three days, as usual for me in my old age. I spent about an hour each day washing the coach, checking and filling the tires and batteries as needed, etc. On the morning of Day 1 she was all ready to roll, so I idled her up to our house from the RV lot in our little senior gated community and took an hour and a half to load all the clothing, food, etc. for my trip. A bit before 1100 hours I pulled out of our little senior gated community and headed south!

My first stop was just down the road a few miles in Ripon, where I picked up my dear cousin, Murle Jean, as she was heading to Madera  for a week and I saved her the trouble of taking the train as she often does. She’s 85, and an old friend there who is 88, fell recently and Murle planned to go stay with her for several days to help out.2019-1-24b a ride for murle jean Murle Jean prepares to board as I load her luggage into a basement hold for our trip together to Madera. Murle was very impressed with the comfort and the excellent view we enjoyed while cruising aboard Big Blue.

We stopped at a Mickey D’s somewhere along the drive for lunch. When we arrived in Madera, I pulled into a Home Depot parking lot near the highway and Murle’s daughter-in-law met us to drive Murle to her friend’s home. It all went well and we had a good visit as we rode together.

Before continuing south to Tulare where I planned to spend the night, I stopped at a Mobil station just off the highway in Fresno that was selling diesel for just $3.24 per, an excellent price here in high dollar Kalifornistan. I had room for just 30 gallons, but pumped it on with a smile. I had shopped online for the best price around and that was it! The place was selling Diesel 2, the good stuff, instead of the awful, low mileage bio-diesel that some low price stations sell.

2019-1-24c tulare walmartJacks down at Tulare’s Walmart store for the night. It was so good to be back on the road with no particular place to go for the next couple of weeks or so. I didn’t even know when I’d be home – life as a bum is good!

I pulled into the Tulare Walmart lot around 1530. I set up the coach for the night and was “home”. I edited photos, began this travelogue, and worked through evening chores such as shower, etc. Unfortunately, there was a Panda Express in the shopping center, very near where I parked. Despite the good diet habits I’ve developed in my old age, I could not resist, so I went online to peruse their menu. Having stood in line at Panda Express stores in the past, I decided to try ordering online. What a difference! When I walked in I walked past the line of customers waiting to be served and gave the girl at the register my name. Five minutes or so later I walked out with my order. I’ve waited in a Panda line for the last time!

Back at the coach I enjoyed my teriyaki chicken, mushroom chicken, and chow mein. It all made for a very good and satisfying dinner as I watched a few silly videos on YouTube.

After dinner, my evening was the usual aboard Big Blue. I wrote more of this blog, perused the ‘net, then after enjoying a couple cool ones, I headed to bed around 2330 and slept very, very well. It had been a long day.


Day 2, Friday, Tulare, CA to Ridgecrest, CA via CA99, CA155, CA178, CA14: 156 miles

Friday dawned cool (for Kalifornistan) but I slept unusually well in the very cozy coach. I set the thermostat in the bedroom for 64° while outside it dropped into the 30s.

2019-1-25a morning at tulare walmartSunrise in Tulare on Day 2. Sunshine was plentiful already, but I wanted some warmth along with my sunshine.

I was rethinking the day’s destination as my planned drive to Ridgecrest was not far from Death Valley. I checked the camping facilities there, and because of the federal shut down at the time, things seemed pretty uncertain online. I opted to continue to Ridgecrest and decide then.

A few minutes before 0900 I zapped a sandwich of turkey sausage, egg white, and cheese on a croissant bun, something Jimmy Dean calls a Delight sandwich. They are quickly zapped in one minute, are pretty tasty and have just 290 calories. I added a little clementine orange and a glass of cranberry juice and called it breakfast. And it was time to hit the road!

2019-1-25b clementines readyClementine oranges (sold as Lil’ Cuties, etc.) are a staple of my diet; I buy them weekly and eat them daily. And for the first time, I saw them on the tree! This is somewhere east of CA99 and it seemed to be the main crop for a few miles. 

There was a bit of fog as I began my drive heading south on the lousy CA99 with all its patches, cracks and potholes, but it wasn’t a long drive as I headed east after a few miles. I drove CA155 over the Sierras, and it was a nicely paved road, but I had no idea what I’d be getting into!

2019-1-25c 55 miles of remoteThis should have been a clue – 55 miles of nearly nothing! No gas stations, just a couple small stores in Glennville was all I saw. Another sign also advised large trucks to avoid the road. It would be an adventure!

2019-1-25c green hillsThe drive was very lovely with all the green grass and the remoteness – but this pastoral setting was to change…

The narrow, two lane highway twisted and turned incessantly as it climbed ever higher, eventually topping out at 6000 Ft. I’ve driven logging trucks on lousy mountain roads that weren’t as twisty as CA155; I could almost read my own rear license plate as I turned through some of those sharp hairpin curves! There were ice warning signs aplenty, and the road had quite a bit of sand on it in places because of the ice that would form overnight.

2019-1-25d photo stopA lovely photo of Big Blue and the incredible landscape. I was just getting started, but didn’t know it at the time…

At one point I was stopped by a flagman as a crew was doing shoulder work and the road was down to one narrow lane. As we chatted, he advised that I be careful going down the other side because a 13% downgrade lay a few miles ahead. He stated that he understood it to be the steepest grade on any Kalifornistan state highway. 

2019-1-25e flagged The flagman who also plowed snow and sanded the highway – check out his rig. Note the elevation on the navigator – I was at just 3971 feet, and had no idea that I had over 2000 feet yet to climb to the summit!

And the flagman added the reassuring tale of a woman driving a motorhome with her two dogs who had lost control in that area, went over the side and all three were killed. He also asked if I had an engine brake as the downgrade, while not so severe the whole way, was long and steep. Yes, I did have an engine brake and it worked very well, indeed. Soon the one car we were waiting on drove by the other way, and he waved me on. He wasn’t kidding about the steep grade – I drove downhill for miles and miles, but the brakes were not challenged a bit; the engine brake did the vast majority of the braking.

2019-1-25f greenhorn summit 6102 ftGreenhorn Summit, elevation 6102 feet – and a fun ride was guaranteed down the other side!

One advantage of taking CA155 over the Sierras as opposed to CA58 or other routes was that traffic the entire way was extremely light; I could count on my two hands the number of vehicles that I encountered over the 25 miles on each side of the summit – and no trucks except a couple of belly dump rigs working the construction area. I liked that!

2019-1-25h i repeat - 13 percent gradeUnbelievable! In my nearly 60 years of driving, including hauling logs and lumber in the mountains, I don’t recall ever seeing a 13% grade on a paved road. Interstate highways are limited to 6% with few exceptions. I loved my engine brake even more after the day’s adventure!

Here is a three minute video of the narrow, crooked CA155 as I began the long descent down the east side of the summit:

 

2019-1-25i this is 13And here’s what 13% downgrade looks like. It didn’t last too long, but the downgrade was 11% for several miles. 

Once over the summit and down much of the other side, I resumed highway speeds and cruised on into the small desert town of Lake Isabella, near its namesake lake, where I stopped to whip up a sandwich for lunch.

2019-1-25k lunch at lake isabellaParked at a shopping area for lunch in the small desert town of Lake Isabella.

2019-1-25l lake isabellaA very small portion of Lake Isabella.

It wasn’t long before I began climbing again as I continued up to Walker Pass, elevation about 5200 feet, and on down the other side, eventually arriving at the town of Ridgecrest. I drove to Ridgecrest many times when I drove truck, and beyond to a place called Trona – but definitely not on CA155! There is a very rich mineral deposit near there, and I hauled a lot of loads of trona – or soda ash – from there to the coast in those days.

1MuleTeamNetThe rig I drove hauling soda ash, made from trona, from the Ridgecrest area back in my truckin’ days. This load was likely heading to Spreckles Sugar in Salinas, CA near the coast. I also hauled the stuff to several other Spreckles sugar mills around the Central Valley. That was years ago – back in the 70s. Today, Spreckles sugar plants in the valley are no more and the once thriving sugar industry in our Central Valley is gone.

I finally arrived at Ridgecrest’s Walmart store at 1445 hours. If I thought 150 miles were not enough for a day’s drive when I left, I was convinced otherwise when I arrived! I was pretty tired from all the twists and turns and generally driving through what was much like a bowl of spaghetti. I was happy to drop the jacks and be at “home” again. I had driven CA155, and now know what it’s like, and that’ll do me for my lifetime!

After setting up for the night, I took a walk around the lot; it was very pleasant at 65° with calm winds, and I had found some warmth! It was also mid 60s at home that day, so I wouldn’t consider myself too successful ’til I found the mid 70s.

2019-1-25n ridgecrest walmartJacks down at Ridgecrest’s Walmart store. I had driven only 156 miles, but it was a full day’s worth of driving! Notice the larger living room slide is not extended; when it’s just me aboard, especially in cool or hot weather, I usually don’t use it. Then I have less area to heat or cool.

After my walk I went shopping for a few items I needed. The store appeared to be nearly new, and an associate told me it has been open for a couple years.

Back at the coach I began the evening chores. I showered, made dinner, and mostly wrote and edited photos. Yep. It was another evening in another town while on board Big Blue and I was having a wonderful time.

After blogging, which took ’til nearly 2200 hours, I dug out a DVD of the WWII collection I have titled The World at War, and watched for over an hour. I enjoyed a couple cool ones and didn’t head for bed ’til almost midnight. It had been quite a day and I slept well.


Day 3, Saturday, Ridgecrest, CA to Parker AZ via US395, CA58, I-40, US95, CA62: 289 miles

It was another cold night, down into the mid 30s, in Ridgecrest. After turning up the heaters, I crawled back into bed ’til almost 0700. The morning was already bright and sunny and I was looking forward to a lovely desert drive to Parker, AZ, about 300 miles away.

I took my sweet time dawdling through the morning chores. I had nothing to do but drive through the desert and had no reason to be in a hurry.

After updating this blog, I zapped a breakfast sandwich, then pulled out of Ridgecrest about 0915 hours. I couldn’t ask for a better day – the sun was shining brightly, the wind was near calm and I was on the wide open desert highways of Kalifornistan. Life as a bum is good!

2019-1-26a what a great startSouthbound on US395 on a perfect day – life is good.

I drove down the mostly two lane US395 from Ridgecrest to its junction with CA58, known in these parts as the Bakersfield – Barstow Highway. Once I turned east on CA58, I was back on a highway I have driven often. The state is building a freeway through the Hinkley area to eliminate the awful two lane highway that is there now. The two lane has been slowly replaced but there are still about 13 miles of the rotten two lane.

Don’t click to enlarge if you wish to avoid my usual rant about the foolish spending of highway funds in Kalifornistan:

2019-1-26c remember hinkleyHinkley. Remember Hinkley, CA? How about the movie Erin Brockovich? Julia Roberts starred in the film about PG&E’s big settlement to residents of Hinkley for hundreds of millions of dollars due to pollution back in the 1990s. At any rate, CA58 runs by Hinkley and each time I drive it I recall that lawsuit and the movie. I read that Hinkley is pretty much a ghost town these days, but here’s the highway sign for the little town.

2017-5-7d I-40 beginning and endIn Barstow, CA I merged onto the very beginning of I-40 which runs all the way to… well, there it is on the sign!

2019-1-26d beautiful desertThe drive along I-40 was, to me, relaxing as usual. I love this kind of driving. The desert views are beautiful and the traffic is relatively light although trucks by the dozen passed me the entire drive.

As morning became afternoon, the wind kicked up along I-40 and it pushed against the coach from the north much of the time. That isn’t a real big deal, but a tail wind is much preferred. When I finally reached US95 and turned south, the wind became a tail wind. Tail winds are good! But…2019-1-26ea lost…I wasn’t paying attention as I drove by the US95 off ramp, and drove right by it. The navigator, as usual, immediately re-calculated and directed me down I-40 about four more miles to another off ramp. This is a portion of the gosh-awful road I took for a couple miles back to US95. I had the navigator speaker turned off, so I didn’t hear the usual pretty, feminine voice that would have saved me the detour. It’s good I’m not in a hurry on these trips!

The drive south was along two lane once again, but with very little traffic. The desert views continued, and I enjoyed the drive.2019-1-26g us95The lovely drive down US95 with the wind at my back. It wasn’t all so straight as this section, but it was all pretty good highway. There. I made a kind comment about a Kalifornistan highway!

I continued down US95 to its junction with CA62, then turned east again toward Arizona. And I found CA62 to be a rough drive most of the way. But soon I crossed the Colorado River into Arizona!

2019-1-26i colorado riverCrossing the Colorado River into Arizona. I was out of Kalifornistan!

I drove into Parker, AZ very soon after I crossed the Colorado, and my day’s drive was about done. I followed the navigator’s instructions to the local Walmart store, and pulled into the lot at 1620 hours Mountain Time. I had lost an hour as I crossed into Arizona. 

2019-1-26l jacks down at sunset at parker, azJacks down at the Parker, AZ Walmart for the night. It was good to be “home” again.

I headed into the store for my daily walk soon after I arrived. During my 25 minute walk I bought a frozen teriyaki bowl for dinner that looked pretty appetizing.

Back at the coach I began the evening chores, and the evening unfolded as usual. After chores and dinner I edited photos, wrote this blog, watched more WWII DVD as I enjoyed a couple cool ones, and fell asleep at the dinette. I gave up and headed to bed at 2330 home time, but by local time it was already Sunday morning.

I was parked very near the street, but overall it was a very quiet night – or if there was much going on, I slept through it. I looked forward to the next day’s drive to at least Tucson, and perhaps clear to the Mexican border town of Nogales.


Day 4, Parker, AZ to Tucson, AZ via AZ95, AZ85, I-10, I-8, I-10 (twice): 262 miles

I was up at 0630 home time, and turned up the heaters, then went back to bed a while as the coach warmed up. A few minutes later I began the morning chores and worked through them to get a somewhat earlier start.

I felt a twinge of homesickness that morning, perhaps because my dear Wifey discovered the car wouldn’t start, and very likely it had a dead battery. I felt badly that I wasn’t there to handle the issue. But in our very close-knit senior community, a neighbor jumped the dead battery and at least she got the car parked in the garage. Our son, Craig, would be visiting Monday to help any way he could, but the car would likely go to a local shop. In reality, our 2013 Ford Escape sits in the garage 99% of the time and in the six years since we bought it, we’ve only put on 33,000 miles. If we have any distance to drive, we take Big Blue!

I hustled through the chores so I could hit the road a bit earlier than usual. By home time, which I’ve decided to stick with this trip, I left at 0820. And again, it was a perfect day to be driving through the desert. It was sunny, warm, and the wind was light.

2019-1-27a great startLight traffic, bright sunshine and the beautiful desert to enjoy – what a great way to start the day!

I drove south on AZ95 headed for, I thought, Nogales, AZ which is right on the Mexico border and is a major port of entry. As the day unfolded, however, it seemed a stretch to drive past Tucson which was a good days drive these days – and besides, Tucson would not be as cold overnight as Nogales was to be.

I thoroughly enjoyed the day’s drive. It is such days that keep me addicted to this RVing habit. With Big Blue I travel in comfort to where I want to go and have my own house and all the comforts of home along with me. Well, I do miss  my hot tub on such trips, but it awaits me back home. And of course, I don’t pay for motel rooms nor those expensive meals out. I do have the choice to eat out when I wish, but I very much like being able to cook my own meals, and those meals are at Walmart prices, to boot.


Here is a short video of the Sunday drive through the Arizona desert that I so enjoyed.


2019-1-27b dale's diner breakfastI found a Dale’s Roadside Diner along the two lane AZ95, I think it was, and ordered three toaster waffles and a clementine orange. Nobody took my order so I had to whip it up myself, but I still like eating at those Dale’s Diners!

2019-1-27c cheap dieselEat your heart out, Kalifornistan! Diesel sold here for $2.54 per while it was selling at home for up to $3.86.

When I reached I-10 I was pleasantly surprised to find diesel selling for just $2.54 per when I had already scheduled a stop at a station in Buckeye where I thought their $2.66 was a bargain. I pulled in and filled up with that cheap stuff, and had room to pump on almost 66 gallons! Even though I had to swipe my card three times to get the fill up, that bargain made my day! I like cheap!

Click for larger photos and to read the captions (When viewing individual photos, you can scroll down and click on “view full size” to see a larger photo, then click again for a huge photo):

After turning onto AZ95 from I-10, I found another Dale’s Roadside Diner and pulled over to have lunch. Split pea soup was on the menu and I had a big bowl of it.

2019-1-27f dale's roadside diner lunchAnother Dale’s Roadside Diner where I enjoyed lunch, but again I had to do all the work.

And I continued on south to I-8 which is the route to take to avoid the busy-ness of Phoenix. I-8 soon met I-10 again and I continued on to the Cortaro Road Walmart in Tucson. It’s very convenient, just a half mile off the interstate and in a huge shopping center with many restaurants – all of which I avoided.

2019-1-27i tucson, azJacks down at the Cortaro Road Walmart for the night. 

I arrived at 1600 Mountain time, and headed into the store for my daily walk. The place was pretty busy, naturally, on a Sunday afternoon, but I enjoyed my walk. Then I bought a few items to pay my space rent in the lot, and returned to the coach.

I worked through the evening chores, then began editing photos and writing this travelogue. It was a very comfortable evening as it had reached a high of 74° in Tucson that day. I watched more documentary, then began watching Driving Miss Daisy, a movie I’ve already watched umpteen times but still very much enjoy. I guess that makes it a classic.

At 2330 home time I climbed into my very comfy bed. It had been a fine day and I slept very well, as usual.


Day 5, Monday, January 28, Tucson, AZ to Nogales, AZ via I-10, I-19: 77 miles

Day 5 would be more for housework and less travel. I had some housecleaning to get done to keep this happy little home on wheels looking good. I’m not a clean freak, but I do like to keep the coach  looking like a human lives here. I also had to find a place to dump the holding tanks and load on fresh water. Then my drive for the day was to be just down the road a piece, about 80 miles, to Nogales which sits smack-dab on the Mexican border.

2019-1-28a house cleaningThis kid has talent! The place got vacuumed and dusted and lookin’ good.

It was going on noon local time when I finished vacuuming and dusting the place. I still had the sinks and bathroom to clean, but that would wait ’til my next notion to clean house. I pulled out of Tucson a bit before noon and continued east on I-10, then south on I-19 toward Nogales.

2019-1-28b tucsonStreaking through Tucson – well, I guess 55 MPH can’t be called streaking, but I got through anyway.

Dumping the tanks would be my next chore, and I would have to find a place with a RV dump available. I did a search on my Garmin navigator for RV parks along my route, and found one in the town of Green Valley on I-19. I followed the lovely voice of the Garmin to a rather nice park that seemed to be mostly upscale sun birds and mobile homes, with little or no RV traffic. Still, I pulled in and asked if they had a RV dump available. I was told they didn’t, but that up the road was a RV storage lot that did. I continued my search up the road, and finally, after asking at three more businesses, I found the place.

2019-1-28d dump siteThe slanting dump site that was pretty strange – but the coach was dumped.

I walked into the office and a friendly gal charged me $15 to dump. If I hadn’t invested so much time to find the place, I may have declined, but was happy to pay the fee and get on with the job. It was a very strange dump. It was not level at all, and the only access was to back in. I did so, and managed to dump the tanks and load the fresh water tank. I pulled out of the place very happy that I finally had that chore behind me. And I continued south.

2019-1-28c a bit overdoneIt was my humble opinion that this “art” was just a bit overdone.

I imagined that I-19 would be crowded with trucks going to and from the large Nogales port of entry, but there were very few trucks. That was a mystery to me and I figured that on Mondays they were all in Nogales to load and unload.

I pulled into the Nogales Walmart a bit after 1400, and was pleased to park for the afternoon and night. The first thing I did was to take my daily walk in the store, then bought a few grocery items that I needed.

I believe even the announcements over the loud speaker were in Spanish. I overheard several conversations in Spanish as well. I was definitely in a border town. As I walked through the parking lot I saw quite a number of Sonora, Mexico license plates. No doubt a lot of Mexicans work and/or shop in Nogales and live in Mexico.

2019-1-28e metric signsThe traffic signs on I-19 were in metric for some reason.

Weather forecasts of the coming “polar vortex blast” that was to drop temperatures drastically farther north and east, was to also cool things down somewhat clear into Texas. I had recently read predictions of temps into the 30s and rarely even the 20s in Texas, and hoped to avoid the cold. I have had cold January weather on trips into the south that cut those trips short, and didn’t want another. I would be watching the forecasts closely.

2019-1-28g nogales walmartParked for the afternoon and night at the Nogales Walmart.

My evening in Nogales was as usual. I did meet another RVer and his wife from Canada who pulled next to me for the night. I had a nice chat with them. They had a wonderful Golden Retriever named Harriet who I fell in love with. As seems the norm for her breed, she was calm and lovable and sweet as could be. It’s refreshing to greet a real dog once in awhile because I live in a community that allows only the little, high strung, inbred, five pound yappers. I wish I could have a dog like Harriet!

I spent the evening watching the rest of Driving Miss Daisy. Then enjoyed a couple cool ones as I watched more of the WWII documentary World at War. I went to bed at 2230 home time and slept very well.


Day 6, Tuesday, Nogales, AZ to El Paso, TX via AZ82, AZ90, I-10, NM146, NM9, NM136, I-10 (again): 340 miles

Morning dawned a bit cloudy in Nogales, but no rain was predicted – yet. I was up and around at 0645 with one thought on my mind – hit the road for El Paso, 350 miles away. I worked through the morning chores, converted my cozy apartment into a very comfortable cruiser, and pulled out of Nogales at 0720, my earliest departure yet this trip.

I drove northeast on AZ82 and AZ90 toward I-10, the interstate that would have taken me directly to El Paso the easy, safe way. But I wanted to see some different scenery as well as drive along the border on a back road. Well, the scenery wasn’t much different, but the road was nearly empty and most of the few vehicles I did see were Border Patrol trucks and SUVs. The road, mostly NM9, was narrow and while there weren’t potholes and patches to drive over, the type of pavement was somehow rougher.

Click to enlarge and read captions:

Until I merged again onto I-10 and reached the outskirts of El Paso, I passed through only two settlements, neither of which would qualify as even a small town. It was quite a different drive, and I’m glad I took it. But… if I’d have encountered any problems I was completely out of touch. I had no phone service most of the time, and there was nothing but scrub and a couple little stores the whole drive. I would have had to count on a sympathetic Border Patrol agent to help if anyone would. An old man like me with my medical issues probably should have opted for I-10, but I just wanted a little more adventure in the day’s drive.

2019-1-29e checkpointThe one check station I passed through during the drive. That dog loved his job and was constantly excited to sniff each vehicle, including Big Blue. The agent asked if I was alone and I said yes, then he sent me on my way.

I kept the heater on most of the day, and was disappointed that I had to, but not every day can be sunny, after all. It was cloudy and cool, and a bit breezy. In El Paso it was predicted that I’d have an overnight low in the mid 30s. My dear Wifey, who was back home, said it was sunny and mild there, and yet, there I was in the cold. But I was not discouraged; I love the rural driving and warmer weather was likely ahead, or at least that was my hope!

Click!

2019-1-29k dale's diner on nm9I came across another Dale’s Roadside Diner waaay out there in the scrub almost in Mexico. I had a turkey sandwich and a pear for lunch, then continued on my way. The service at that Diner was Ok provided I was willing to do all the work myself. So I did.

2019-1-29l welcome to texasWelcome to Texas! I had reached my destination, Texas. I was finally in the land of the free, but where was the sunshine and warmth? I would continue my January Search for Sunshine!

I pulled into the Mesa Street Walmart parking lot at 1640 hours, and settled in for the night. I had called earlier to be sure the likes of me were allowed on their lot for the night, and the nice lady said “Sure!”

After settling in, I headed to the store for my daily walk. It was cool, about 50° outside, but the coach would keep me warm all night. After my walk I bought a few frozen dinners I spotted in the store, and would try one for dinner.

2019-1-29m jacks down at el pasoJacks down at one of several Walmarts in El Paso. Now, that’s a beautiful sunset photo if I do say so myself!

Back at the coach I worked through the evening chores and showered, then began the long process of sorting and editing photos and blogging. I zapped a Walmart Great Value frozen sesame chicken bowl for dinner. It was delicious, for a frozen dinner, and I would like to buy more of those – but I’ve never seen such dinners in our local Walmarts. Maybe Texans are treated better than most! (Back home, I found the same meals.)

After dinner I continued editing photos and writing this travelogue. During the evening I watched more WWII. Then, after enough war and destruction, a romantic comedy seemed appealing. I dug out my favorite such movie and watch Intolerable Cruelty for the 23rd time. Maybe it was the 40th time as I don’t really keep track of such things. And it was as entertaining as ever.

I headed to bed around 2330, as usual, and slept well.


Day 7, Wednesday, El Paso, TX to Ft. Stockton, TX via I-10: 245 miles

I awoke to a somewhat warmer morning than I expected. Instead of the predicted mid 30s, the low overnight was 40°. After morning chores I checked the weather in Ft. Stockton, my likely destination for the day, and saw it was to be mid 30s that night. I was very concerned about the ultra-cold weather in the northern states, but it didn’t seem to cool Texas down much. I chose to continue on.

I had planned on dawdling around in the coach ’til the commute traffic cleared out, but I was anxious to get on the road, even if it was crowded – and there was one delay, but just briefly.

2019-1-30a el paso commuteThe backed up traffic slowly getting on to I-10. It didn’t last long, and once through this mess, traffic moved along nicely.

It took awhile to work my way through the endless construction that is always underway in El Paso. I waited in a long line to get onto I-10, but after some delay I was cruising along just fine.

2019-1-30b el paso always constI-10 construction never is complete in El Paso, or so it seemed to me. 

The first stop was to fuel up at an Alon station that sold fuel at just $2.44. It was about 20 miles into my drive, still in El Paso. I was surprised that the place wasn’t crowded at such a price, but there was plenty of room for me. I checked the pump and the sign and saw only “Diesel”, not “Biodiesel” so I pumped on 76 gallons with a big smile. That was the cheapest diesel I’d seen since I’ve owned Big Blue!

2019-1-30c cheap dieselPumping on the cheapest diesel (just $2.44 per) since I’ve owned Big Blue. Cheap is good!

After swiping my card three times to actually fill up, I read on the receipts that it was 5% biodiesel. I read online that morning as I tried to research biodiesel regs that it can be labeled diesel if it’s 5% or less. I also read that biodiesel can be mixed to 20% so I hoped the 5% stuff wouldn’t hurt my mileage. That was my experience with our first diesel coach and I never bought biodiesel again. However, I do not know what percent biodiesel that first experience was. (As it turned out, I seemed to have realized my usual mileage with 5% biodiesel.)

2019-1-30d overhead freewayEl Paso has some pretty wild freeway overpasses. This one seemed pretty radical.

I pulled out of the station, still very pleased with myself, and continued east on I-10. El Paso has some pretty fantastic freeways built on I-10 with several of them merging overhead. It was quite a sight!

2019-1-30e rest area bkkfstA Dale’s Roadside Diner along I-10 east of El Paso. I enjoyed an oatmeal breakfast and caught up on my blogging. I love this bum’s life on the road!

When I finally had El Paso behind me, I pulled into the first rest area I came across and whipped up an oatmeal breakfast. I also brought this blog up to date and did my dawdling with El Paso behind me. It’s always good to be past El Paso and its heavy traffic.

The day’s drive was entirely on I-10 to Ft. Stockton. And the scenery never changed much during the drive. I shot too many photos, as usual, and in a way they all looked alike with the dead and brown scrub everywhere. But it’s very empty and I-10 is nearly all good highway with few rough areas.

2019-1-30f start of the day's driveOne of the first photos of the day’s drive…

2019-1-30m last photo.jpg…and one taken near the end of the drive. It does all look pretty  much the same!

I stayed up to date on the forecast for Ft. Stockton and it would have a low overnight of 41° – and I hoped they were right. That’s not bad in January, especially when up north the cold, unusual Arctic vortex was killing people. A lot of those older northerners are snowbirds and were down here in the south, also looking for warmth.

2019-1-30g check pointEntering a Border Patrol inspection…

2019-1-30g check point k9 teamHere a K9 team inspects for stowaways, drugs, etc. Guess which employee most loves his job and works for free! I was asked if I was an American citizen. I replied “Yes” and was told to have a nice day. And so I did.

The drive was very relaxing and I thoroughly enjoyed the day. It was the travel along endless open highway, the living aboard the coach, the solitude, and the adventure of seeing new things that have made my RV trips such a pleasure. And while I’d been making a point of eating in the coach almost entirely, I felt a good pig-out coming on. I didn’t know where or when I would find it, but I’d been hankerin’ for a good chicken dinner! 

Click!

I pulled into the Ft. Stockton Walmart lot a bit after 1700 hours Central Time. After setting up the coach for the evening, I headed to the store for my daily walk and a couple items I needed. The lot was loaded with RVs, as many as I can recall ever seeing in a Walmart lot.

Back at the coach I began the evening chores. I also edited photos and continued writing this travelogue. For dinner I zapped another frozen dinner and enjoyed it as I perused my favored ‘net sites.

2019-1-30n jacks down at ft stockton walmartBig Blue at the Ft. Stockton Walmart lot for the night.

My evening was as usual. I watched more documentary, and saw the part about the home front as WWII broke out and the country prepared for war. What a time that was! And to stay warm that cool evening, my cool ones during the evening were apple juice hot from the microwave. That was a nice change during those cool evenings. I headed for bed at 2330 home time, or 0130 Thursday morning local time, and I slept well.


Day 8, Ft. Stockton, TX to Del Rio, TX via US285, US90: 185 miles

As the second week of my annual January Search for Sunshine began, I was not sure where I’d go that day. Start the journey back home? Continue south and enjoy more Texas rural driving? I finally opted to head south for another day to spend the night in Del Rio or Eagle Pass, Texas. Both were a drive through Texas brush country which I enjoy driving even though it all looks the same.

But first things first – I had to get some propane that day, so after working through the morning chores I drove three miles to the local Flying J and filled the tank. $55 later I pulled into the truck parking area to update this travelogue. After some time there, I pulled out and headed south about 0830 home time. I would stop along the road and whip up breakfast – I was not real fond of Flying J’s truck parking area and its noise. And besides, the ‘net connection there was awful slow.

So… I headed south on US285 and found a spot to pull off the road and have a quick breakfast of frozen waffles – and not so much as even a cell phone signal. But I could still write this bit on the ‘puter without a net connection. And I have to say, those little waffles with sugar free syrup and a couple clementine oranges make for a not-too-bad breakfast.

2019-1-31btexaswindmillThis photo is so Texas. I saw windmills in several places that day, but didn’t see much, if any, cattle.

I continued my drive down US285 and saw more and more of the Texas bush country that isn’t exactly a beautiful landscape. But it was wide open country and there was almost no traffic and I certainly enjoyed the drive. Eventually I reached the little town of Sanderson which is at the junction of US90. At that point US 285 ended and I turned southeast onto US90. Sanderson proclaims itself the Cactus Capital of Texas, and that’s about all one could say of the little town.

2019-1-31dsanderson2ctxYep! The real, honest to goodness Cactus Capital of Texas and they let people in for free!

During the drive I saw a couple, maybe more, peccaries on the shoulder of the road. They were just a momentary view, and they may have been feral hogs which are a real problem in much of Texas. I didn’t think to press the save button on my dash cam which would have saved a three minute clip of the video. When I drove into Sanderson I pulled over for about 45 minutes and searched in vain for the critters I saw – whatever they were. They were recorded on the video somewhere, no doubt, but I didn’t have time to review the entire drive. That was only the second time I’ve seen such critters in my many miles of RVing and I wish I’d have gotten the photo.

Click to enlarge!

After about 180 miles I arrived in Del Rio, Texas at 1330 hours home time and pulled into the local Walmart lot for the afternoon and overnight. The first thing I did was head to the store for lunch and bought a Mickey D’s Big Mac and fries. I had been diet-righteous long enough and needed a real meal, and to me a Big Mac qualified! I carried it back to the coach and thoroughly enjoyed the fat and calories. I also wrote a bit of travelogue as I ate.

2019-1-31fdelriowalmartBig Blue at the Del Rio, Texas Walmart for the night. The next day would begin my return home. 

After lunch I walked back into the store for my daily walk, and bought a couple items I needed. I decided it was time to turn for home, and back at the coach I began mapping my return trip. I would have to pretty much retrace my route because I did not want to travel farther north due to cooler weather there. I also edited photos and clacked away on the laptop as I updated this travelogue.

After evening chores such as shower and dinner, I updated a bit on this travelogue. I watched more documentary as I enjoyed a couple more hot drinks as the night before. I went off to bed at my usual 2330 and slept well.


Day 9, Friday, February 1, Del Rio, TX to El Paso, TX via US90, US285, I-10: 431 miles

Having gotten up about 0600, I hustled through the morning chores and pulled out of the Del Rio Walmart at 0645. I had a big day ahead of me because I wanted to drive all the way to El Paso to begin my trip home – a 430 mile trek. That would have been plenty for one day, and then to all that driving I added the tasks of two fuel fill ups and also dumping the tanks. It was all just too much for an old man.

First, I drove to the cheapest station in Del Rio that I could find on the ‘net, and filled up by adding 45 gallons of diesel at $2.56 per, an excellent price. Next, I dumped the tanks and filled the fresh water tank at a rather primitive RV park I happened to see soon after filling up. I got the tanks dumped alright, but it was a very messy job since the place was mostly dirt – more accurately, it was mud. And it took soooo long to fill the fresh water tank because I have to fill it from the bottom. I spent about 45 minutes or so to finish the job, including cleaning up the shoes I muddied in the process. Finally, I pulled onto US90 and continued my drive.

2019-2-1b dumpLoading on fresh water after the dumping was complete. It was a messy job!

My long drive continued after I loaded the water, and I drove through the same bush country, the same roads, that I drove to Del Rio the day before. And my trip home would be much the same as the drive out here. But I would not drive to Nogales, AZ on the homeward trek as it was completely out of the way.

2019-2-1c Border Patrol inspection.jpgNot long after the drive began, I stopped again at a Border Patrol inspection station. “Are you alone?” “Are you a U.S. citizen?” I replied in the affirmative and was on my way.

I would have preferred to drive another route home, but as I mentioned previously nothing else made sense. There is one direct route from Del Rio to El Paso, and it was the same one as I drove to Del Rio. Still, I enjoyed the trip, but it sure was tiring as the day wore on.

2019-2-1d Same view as other wayYep. The same exact road but in the other direction.

I was inundated with bees at one rest area. I don’t know why the coach attracted them, but I didn’t get out of the coach at that stop!

Click to view larger:

Because I fueled and dumped before leaving Del Rio, I had a late start. On a day that covered over 400 miles, the result was that I would be driving in the dark before arriving at my destination. I rarely drive in the dark, but I enjoy it and got two or three hours of darkness that day.

2019-2-1g found my lost hourOne of the hours lost going east was found along I-10 and I was back in the Mountain Time Zone, just an hour later than home time.

The clouds were with me much of the day, and at sunset I watched quite a show as the sun settled through the clouds. I drove in darkness for quite awhile as I approached El Paso, and drove through El Paso to the same Walmart I stayed at just Tuesday night.

2019-2-1h sunset along I-10I wish this photo did justice to the sunset I saw, but it falls short. I took about a half dozen such photos and no others made the cut. Maybe this one shouldn’t have…

I wanted to fuel up again at the El Paso station that sold diesel at just $2.44 a couple days ago when I was in El Paso. However, it was Friday  night and I feared the traffic might be miserable and not worth pulling off the interstate to fight my way to the station. Still, my desire for cheap convinced me to give it a try. And by then rain was beginning to fall. I soon wished I hadn’t pulled off the freeway. 

The traffic was just awful for the two or three blocks I drove off the freeway to the Alon station. But when I finally arrived I was pleasantly surprised by the even lower price! Diesel was selling for just $2.40 while it sold nearby for over $3! I pulled up to a pump, dealing with several other cars at the station, and discovered the pump wouldn’t work. I had to pull up to a second pump and try again. Then after two processes of swiping the card, I pumped on 46 gallons, just half of a tank, to fill up. It was barely worth the effort, and then I had to fight the traffic back to the freeway.

2019-2-1i same station lower priceDiesel for $2.40 per! It was almost worth the rotten traffic I dealt with to get to it.

Once back on I-10, and by then the sprinkles had mostly stopped, the traffic flowed smoothly and at the limit for the 20 miles or so to the turnoff to the Walmart where I would spend the night. And then I really got into the traffic! It took 20 minutes simply to navigate the long off ramp through the heavy traffic. Finally, at a few minutes after 1900 local time, I arrived at the Walmart lot and parked for the night. Whew! What a day it had been!

2019-2-1j El Paso trafficNote the seemingly endless line of stop and go traffic on the off ramp to Walmart. This off ramp alone took 20 minutes or so!

I was so relieved to finally park and set up for the night at the Mesa St. Walmart in El Paso. The long drive, the two stops to add fuel, the dumping of the tanks, etc. were behind me though, and I did get a lot done. I zapped a frozen meal for dinner, then took my shower, which relaxed me considerably. I then settled in at the dinette to edit photos and write this travelogue of the long, but productive, day.  I enjoyed a couple cool ones while I watched a bit of the World at War documentary. I headed for bed at 2330 and slept very well.


Day 10, Saturday, El Paso, TX to Tucson, AZ via I-10: 317 miles

I was up and around at my usual time and worked through the morning chores. It was Super Bowl weekend and I did not want to shop at a Walmart store with the mobs that would be shopping for their party goodies and beer. So as soon as I could, I headed to the store for a few items I needed. I wanted to beat the rush!

Back at the coach I was inspired to clean the sinks and the bathroom, so I got right after that chore before the inspiration lifted. Then I zapped an egg white, cheese and turkey sausage sandwich and included two little clementine oranges for breakfast. And it was time to hit the road toward home. The destination planned was the same Walmart in Tucson that I stayed at almost a week ago.

I pulled out of the Walmart lot at 1045 local time and drove through heavy traffic the short distance to I-10 West. It seemed to take forever to get through El Paso on I-10, as usual, but maybe half an hour later the busy place was behind me.

2019-2-2a traffic getting out of El PasoThe awful traffic for a couple blocks from Walmart to I-10. What a mess!

The rest of the day made for a very pleasant drive across New Mexico and into Arizona. I love the desert views as can be seen in the following photos that I shot in New Mexico and Arizona during the drive.

Click to enlarge:

New Mexico always has the splashiest welcomes I’ve ever seen, and there were three (!) signs within a mile, one after another, letting me know I was welcome. Here are two of them and there were two of the smaller one.

Click!

I ate lunch at a rest area where I zapped a whole potato and warmed up some country gravy I made at home before the trip. I love potatoes and gravy and have one every so often. I chased it with a banana, then headed back onto the highway.

2019-2-2p I passed someoneI passed someone! I actually passed someone! When chugging along at about 60 MPH on the interstates, that’s a rare occurrence. I was pretty pleased with myself!

When driving through the desert, signs warn of how to stay safe in a dust storm. I’ve never experienced one, and I trust I never do. They can reduce visibility to zero and have proven deadly on the highways. This sequence of signs appeared several times through my drive.

Click to view larger:

I drove past Tucson on I-10 to the little town of Marana which has a huge Walmart, the same one I stayed at a few days ago as I headed east. I’ve always described that Walmart as being in Tucson, but it’s actually just west and is a part of the greater Tucson area.

First thing after arriving, I headed to the store and took my walk. I then climbed onto one of their little electric scooters and shopped for a few items. The Marana Walmart is a huge one and, as usual, after my 20 to 25 minute walk, I was too sore to walk any more than I had to.

Back at the coach I showered, then decided to bring dinner in. A Subway was almost next to the coach, so I walked over and ordered an egg white and veggie sandwich that I took back to the coach. It was a real treat as I love Subway. I don’t know why I don’t eat those subs more often.

The evening unfolded as usual. Edit photos. Write. Documentary. Cool ones. Bed. And it was a good night, as usual.


Day 11, Super Bowl Sunday, February 3, 2019, Marana, AZ to Parker, AZ via I-10, I-8, AZ85, AZ95: 272 miles

Rain fell a bit overnight, and I love to hear the sound of rain on the roof of the coach. I slept well, as I always seem to do. When I was up and around the rain continued to fall off and on, and I enjoyed it.

2019-2-3b rainy morn in Marana (Tucson)Morning at the Marana (Tucson) Walmart – and more rain was to come during the drive.

It was an unusually mild night with temps, according to a local weather station, in the 60s. The coach’s heater ran very little overnight, if at all.

I planned to drive to Parker, AZ on that Super Bowl Sunday, then to Tulare, CA on Monday, and arrive home on Tuesday. I was ready to be back home.

After the usual morning routine, I pulled back onto I-10 at 0900 local time and continued my trek home. The rain continued and was pretty heavy at times throughout much of the morning drive.

2019-2-3c rainy start I hadn’t driven through any real rain yet during the trip, but I sure got my share the morning of Day 11.

2019-2-3d not todayNope. Ain’t gonna happen. There would be no blowing dust that day.

By noon or so I drove out of the rain and into a beautiful, sunny day. The drive through the Arizona desert was very pleasant. Along I-8 is the Sonoran Desert National Monument, a part of the National Landscape Conservation System. It is some of the most beautiful desert landscape I have seen.

2019-2-3e Sonoran Desert Natl MonumentA photo of the area along I-8, a part of the Sonoran Desert National Monument. The beauty of the area was just stunning.

I drove through Quartzsite, AZ this trip, a RV destination for many RVers who live there during the winter when the weather is so nice and sunny. Usually. I’ve visited in the past, and I find the place to be a nut house. Too many people, too many flea markets, and too many RV dealers. It is a place I avoid, as I did this trip. I drove right on by.

2019-2-3h Parker WalmartParked at the Walmart RV Park (or so it appeared) in Parker, AZ. There were a lot of RVs parked in the afternoon when I arrived.

When I arrived at Parker, AZ about 1600, I pulled into a Shell station and filled up at $2.80 per, probably my last cheap fill up. I planned to be in Tulare, CA the next day, and there would be no cheap diesel anywhere in Kalifornistan!

As soon as I was settled in for the night, I headed to the store and took my daily walk. Then, again, I bought a few items. I bought a favorite snack of mine, a box of Crunch ‘n Munch which is kinda like Cracker Jacks but better, and a large can of Bud. That’s a snack I really like and never allow myself. I can’t remember the last time I so indulged. It was Super Bowl Sunday, fer cryinoutloud, and though I didn’t care about the game, that shouldn’t have  meant I couldn’t party a bit!

Back at the coach, I showered, zapped a frozen meal for dinner, then began the nightly photo editing and clacking of the keyboard to write the travelogue for the day.

2019-2-3i Parker WalmartHere’s a night photo of the “Walmart RV Park” in Parker, AZ. They had quite a crowd on the night of Super Bowl Sunday. Click to enlarge.

The evening unfolded as usual; I watched the WWII documentary as I enjoyed a couple cool ones. I was in bed by 2330 and slept well.


Day 12, Monday, Parker, AZ to Tulare CA via CA62, US95, I-40, CA58, CA99: 400 miles

Day 12 would be only the second day of the trip that I planned to drive 400 miles. I worked through the morning chores as efficiently as I could, and pulled out of the Walmart lot at 0700 home time. Home time was two miles away in Kalifornistan, just across the nearby Colorado River.

2019-2-4a cross ColoradoCrossing the Colorado River into Kalifornistan.

2019-2-4b mixed emotionsI always have mixed emotions about this sign. It means home, Honey, hearth, and hot tub are not far away, but it also  means all the stupidity that is Kalifornistan. I continued on. As always.

I really didn’t need that sign to tell me where I was; the condition of the roads was a dead giveaway. Much of the morning’s drive was on lovely, smooth roads, but that doesn’t excuse the rotten roads one encounters all to often in Kalifornistan. I drove over more rough road from the Colorado River to Tulare than the combined roads of the three other states I drove the entire trip. It’s sad and disgusting!

Click for larger photos:

As I neared Barstow along I-40 the wind kicked up from the south. It was a strong, gusty blow that made driving difficult. I saw one big Class A coach on the side of the road with his slide topper, an awning over the slide, blown loose with the canvas just hanging from the roller because the wind blew it out. One of my slide toppers was blown open several times, which resulted with a loud bang every time it closed. It is very disconcerting – especially when you’ve had a roof blown off as happened to me a couple years ago aboard Cecil the Diesel. The ferocious wind kept up clear through Barstow, but not so bad as I continued west. I was not having a good time.

Click!

I pulled into the Boron Rest Area along CA58 and whipped up lunch. I had let myself get too bothered by the wind storm, and a relaxing lunch helped. Afterwards, as I reached the summit of the Tehachapis in the town of the same name, I stopped at a Mickey D’s and ordered an Oreo McFlurry and a large coffee. That made everything all better!

Heading down the mountains toward Bakersfield was a scenic drive. The mountains were green from the winter rains, and was so much more scenic than the usual dried, brown grass I’m used to seeing there. I drove the route from the desert into the valley many times back in my truckin’ days.

Once into Bakersfield and heading north on the uber-rotten CA99, the rain began again. It was light, sporadic rain and kept the drive interesting. Rain is seldom an issue. High winds are always an issue with me and I was happy they were behind me.

I pulled into Tulare’s Walmart store at 1600, the same Walmart I had stayed at the first night of this trip. I took my walk around the store first thing, then settled in for the night. After a hot, refreshing, but brief shower, I walked over to the nearby Panda Express to pick up dinner that I had ordered online. Again. I relaxed over dinner and felt much better after the good Chinese grub.

2019-2-4k Tulare Walmart againBig Blue at rest in the Tulare Walmart lot. We were both happy to be “home” for the night.

The evening would be my last one aboard Big Blue for this trip, and, especially after the challenges of Day 12, I was ready to be home. I enjoyed the long, scenic drives of the trip, the solitude, the fun of living aboard for a couple weeks, and I would soon be looking forward to the next adventure. But I would also enjoy our very comfortable home with my loving Wifey again. Yep. I was ready to be back home!

The evening was as they have been the whole trip; I edited photos, posted to this travelogue, watched more of the documentary World at War, and enjoyed a couple cool ones. I headed for bed around 2330 and slept well.


Day 13, Tuesday, February 4, Tulare, CA to Home(!) via CA99: 154 miles

I was up and around that 13th and last morning of the 2019 Search for Sunshine adventure with the joy of knowing that I was just a three hour drive from home. And again, I was ready to be home!

2019-2-5a Happy camperThe handsome, wandering bum paused a few moments that morning to update his website. I was ready to be a homebody – at home!

I worked through the morning chores, updated this blog a bit, then converted my comfy little home to a comfy highway cruiser. I pulled out of the Tulare Walmart lot at 0745 and headed for home.

The sky darkened as I drove north, and it let loose with a good rain for awhile somewhere along the early portion of the drive.

Click!

I would make two stops en route home; the first at a Mickey D’s in Fresno where I bought a sausage, egg and cheese McGriddle, then enjoyed it in the quiet of the coach. It was the first of the trip, and I do love those sandwiches the few times I allow myself one. Then in the town of Delhi I pulled into a very nice 7-11 store’s gas pump section and filled up with diesel – for just $3.14 per – an excellent price in Kalifornistan.

2019-2-5cb farmers fightYep! I was back in the Central Valley of Kalifornistan where whiskey is for drinking and water is for fighting over. I wouldn’t be a farmer in this state for any reason. Our stupid politicians have ignored their water needs for decades!

I continued my drive northward after the fill-up. The drive was full of pot holes and lousy, bumpy patch jobs for miles on end. Sure… there were stretches of smooth pavement but there just is no excuse for the lousy roadway. The coach and I were jostled badly as we bounced along the lousy road known as CA99 – the worst overall drive of the whole adventure both going and coming!

I pulled into our little senior gated community at 1130. My dear Wifey had a lunch date with another gal who lives in our community, so after a wonderful, extended hug and a brief conversation, she left with her friend – as I insisted.

2019-2-5e homeThe gate to our little community swung open for me as I finally returned home. And it was good to be back!

I unloaded the coach in about an hour, and then took the rest of the day off. Dumping the tanks and getting her washed would wait ’til the next day. I celebrated the homecoming in part by taking a slow, gloriously wasteful shower! The 12 RV showers the past 12 days were certainly adequate affairs, but they allowed no time to relax a bit to enjoy them. I can report that I thoroughly enjoyed that wasteful, first shower back home!

And now I can also report, without fear of jinxing myself: Big Blue ran like a champ the entire trip! After the house battery charging issue and the fridge that quit working on prior trips, it was good to have a trouble free adventure. I was very pleased with her.

The trip was 3,285 miles over 13 days. I did find sunshine, as was the advertised purpose of the entire endeavor. Sometimes it was warm sunshine, something that’s pretty hard to come by this time of year. Big Blue arrived back home very, very dirty from the rains and in need of a good wash. She would be looking like her old self soon, and our next adventure would likely be a trip to Gridley once again to visit my twin Sis and her husband, John. And perhaps – perhaps – I’d take another Continental Loop around the country in the spring! That idea sure intrigues me!



About FishWisher

Over the years I have posted many exciting fishing and boating stories here, but now in my seventies, it was time to sell the boat and find less demanding pastimes. All the fishing stories are still here! I will now post my travels aboard the motorhome and other activities. I hope y'all will still enjoy the fishing and boating adventures and perhaps peek in on my post-boating activities on occasion. Thanks for dropping in and I hope you enjoy your visit.
This entry was posted in Travel: Looking for Sunshine!. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to 2019 January Search for Sunshine

  1. Anonymous says:

    It’s about time you got back on board. I enjoy following along.

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