A Visit to my Sis & John in Gridley

Day 1, Wednesday, home to Gridley via I-5, CA99, CA70

My visit to my sis’s place in Gridley earlier this month didn’t quite count because my dear Wifey wasn’t with me. In fact, I visited twice earlier this month when I drove to Oregon to get the fancy new mudflap for Big Blue. I also visited my high school buddy, Al, and his wife, Betty, who live in Keizer, Oregon during that trip. I spent the first and last nights of that trip at my sis and John’s place. And since we planned to take the south route next month for our annual Colorado adventure, we probably wouldn’t see them on that trip. So we wanted to visit them while we could.

It seems we’re always welcome at Gale and John’s in Gridley because when I check about a visit they always say “Sure; anytime!” And it is the only times we get together because with my sis’s struggles with a form of Parkinson’s disease, traveling out of town is simply too much for them to deal with.

2019-5-22a loading for Gale'sLoading the coach for a one night visit to Gridley.

We loaded up the coach on that breezy Wednesday morning and headed to Gridley – but first we’d stop at Oroville’s Feather Falls Casino gas station for a fill up with their unusually low-priced diesel. While the Flying J near our home was selling diesel for nearly $4.25 per, the casino’s price was just $3.40 per. I had to fuel up there!

The drive to Gridley. Click for larger photos and to read the captions:

The drive was mostly on CA99 this trip as I simply forgot to take the connector to I-5 in Stockton but we drove a bit on I-5 through Sacramento. Of course, we fought the traffic the entire trip ’til we took the CA99 junction. We then took CA70 and drove through Marysville instead of Yuba City this trip. That’s the best way to Oroville and the “cheap” casino diesel. When one is old enough to remember diesel for 25¢, today’s prices are very difficult to be considered really cheap!

2019-5-22d Campfire salvageWe passed several truckloads of burnt logs during the drive. I would guess such logs are from salvage logging after the devastating Camp Fire last November – Kalifornistan’s worst ever fire that took over 80 lives.

2019-5-22e entering MarysvilleEntering Marysville on CA70 to deal with the heavy traffic. We were amazed that although we drove through at least a dozen signal lights, we had to stop just once! It seems they have them timed very well – or we were very lucky!

We turned onto CA20 in Marysville and continued toward Oroville and the casino’s gas station. It was a zoo there, as usual, but we waited only minutes ’til a spot opened for us and I proceeded to fill the 90 gallon tank with just 55 gallons. Even so, that fill up alone saved us about $40! It pays to shop prices!

2019-5-22f Feather FallsFeeding Big Blue some diesel at the Feather Falls Casino’s gas station. Since they are on tribal land, they can sell their diesel cheaper – and so I go out of my way to shop there – along with a lot of other folks!

We agreed to try the buffet at the casino after we fueled up, so we drove the half mile to the casino and parked. As we walked to the casino we could hear the blaring rock ‘n roll music, and hoped it wasn’t playing inside, however it was – and the stink of cigarette smoke hung heavily in the air. An employee told us there was no smoking in the buffet area, so we walked to the buffet and discovered the rock ‘n roll blaring there as well, accompanied by the same stinky air. Disgusted, we walked back to the coach and headed to Gridley. No, we’ll never try that again – it was the same as most any other casino! 


We decided to head to Gridley’s Taco Bell for lunch. After the relatively short drive to Gridley, we pulled into the Mickey D’s RV parking area because Taco Bell has no room for RV parking. I walked next door to the Taco Bell for a couple tacos for Lavonne and a taco salad for me. We enjoyed the food in the coach where we played our choice of music and the air was clean!

We arrived at Gale and John’s at 1400. Lavonne headed to the house as I set up the coach for our stay. I joined them in the house after I was done setting up the coach, and enjoyed our lovely visit.

Click for larger:

When dinner time rolled around, we brought in a Papa Murphy’s pizza from the coach that we brought from home. John and Lavonne did the kitchen thing, baking the pizza, cooking some asparagus that we brought, as well as some corn-on-the-cob they had. John tossed a delicious salad, and we all sat down to a very good dinner.

2019-5-22L Pizza and sidesmmmmmmmm. We ate very well that evening!

After dinner it was time for the one most gifted at unskilled labor to do his thing. That would be me! It was clean up time, and since John and Lavonne whipped up the fine meal, it was only fair that I cleaned up – and I did a superb job.

2019-5-22m Family portrait
An after dinner family portrait – that’s (L-R) John, Gale, Lavonne, and that Tom Selleck look-alike, Dale.

We continued our visit ’til a few minutes after 1900 when Lavonne and I bid Gale and John a good night and headed to the coach for the evening. We don’t visit late during our visits because they have their evening routines, and with our own little home in the driveway, we are out of their way. We love Big Blue!

We spent the evening on the computers, as usual. Lavonne played games and visited her favorite websites as I clacked away on my laptop writing this travelogue and editing photos.

2019-5-22n Gridley SunsetAnother dramatic country sunset at Gale and John’s place. Beautiful!

Lavonne called it a day around 2230 and I joined her about an hour later. It had been a lovely day aboard the coach and visiting family. It was a very quiet and restful night in the Gridley countryside.

Day 2, Thursday, Gridley to home via I-5, CA99: 269 miles total for the trip

I turned up the water heater around 0630 and crawled back into bed awhile. The coach was comfortable without the heaters as it had been a mild springtime night. We were both up and around a few minutes later to greet the morning.

I received an email the prior day advising that Big Blue’s new microwave had arrived at Modesto’s Best Buy store. It was the same brand and size as the original which had croaked during my recent Oregon trip. We’d be picking up our weekly Walmart grocery order in Stockton en route home, and hopefully we’d be home early enough for me to pick it up that afternoon. My RV repairman was expecting me to call him when I finally received it, and I was looking forward to having that issue fixed!

John and I decided that I’d drive their car into town for the morning’s Mickey D’s breakfast. When I returned, we visited around the table ’til about 0900 when I set about preparing the coach for the trip home. We pulled out of their driveway about 0930.

During the drive home we heard on the radio that a fatal accident happened earlier that had I-5 completely closed. I called Walmart to advise that we’d have to cancel or delay our grocery pickup. But the fellow at Walmart told me that he had driven by the accident just half an hour earlier and that the southbound lanes slowed as everyone rubbernecked at the accident, but that the delay was minimal. As it turned out, our delay was indeed less than 10 minutes, and we arrived at the store on time to pick up our order. Several big rigs and cars were involved in the accident and two people lost their lives.

Click for photos of the awful accident. For larger photos, scroll down on an opened photo and click on “View full size”, then click again for a huge photo:

The fatal accident was the second I’ve seen along I-5 between Sacramento and Stockton in just two months. Having experienced our own terrible accident in October of 2017, such tragedies ring entirely too close to home.

We arrived home about 1230 hours, and after unloading the groceries and our “stuff” for the trip, I headed to Modesto and picked up the new microwave. (The following Saturday my RV fixer-upper installed it.) 

I’m really looking forward to our planned adventure to Denver and beyond, perhaps to Arkansas, in June!

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.
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