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Thursday, April 30, 2015

I'm 500 Miles Away From Home

Let’s see – where to begin. Well to begin with it has been a beautiful day today. All day. Nice weather, pretty scenery and we’re stopped in a nice RV park in Joplin, MO. It’s a KOA and one of the better ones. They even cook us dinner – for a price of course, but they bring pizza right to our door. And it is pretty good pizza.
And our Direct TV is working here – I think yesterday the tree right behind us was blocking the signal.
We had a short day today. Leaving the campground just west of Oklahoma City about 9:15 (I slept in!) Then we stopped for breakfast after we got through the city. That took about 45 minutes. Bill had his favoritre Lingonberry Crepes. Then back on the road – the Will Rogers Turnpike or I-44.
This year Oklahoma is SO green with lots of wildflowers growing along the highway.

There are two toll booths between Oklahoma City and the MO state line – each costs $9.75 – much cheaper than the toll roads in Mexico. Also the booths are nice and wide. Don’t scrape the mirrors going through them. And the road is excellent.

Crossed into Missouri and stopped at a Flying J for diesel. $2.49 a gallon with our Pilot/Flying J rewards card. We’re averaging about 8.25 mpg.
The campground is right across the street from the station so we pulled in and got “our” spot. They know us so we usually get the same spot every time we stop. A short day – stopped at 2:00. So what is going to happen tomorrow? Bill really wanted to go farther today but I wanted to stop…so now it is still 530 miles to home…
Did all my end of month bookkeeping and backed up the laptop.
Bill called our gardener today and asked him to please go to the house asap and start the winter clean up. He said he’d already started! He was glad to hear from us – we always bring him hot hot sauce from Mexico. And the pest control people have already set up a date to spray the house. Sometimes it is nice to be from a small town.
Thought I'd add some pictures from the campground Some of our neighbors  Looking out the window I see a robin. And a bunch of ducks.

Papa, Mama and Baby

Looking towards the back of the campground 

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Only a couple of sleeps from home - Oklahoma City tonight

Here we are all buttoned up and ready to leave Tucumcari, NM. It was cold this morning! We got on the road about 8 o'clock then stopped for diesel before getting on the Interstate. 
the stool is there to keep a drawer from  opening
 Soon we were in Texas - and in Texas - and in Texas. 
 Weather was good, no wind and warming up as the day progressed. We got as far as Amarillo - this is the Cadillac Ranch - the old Cadillacs that are planted in the dirt. Took this shot as we were driving down the road. Someday I hope we can stop and walk out to see them. They were put there in 1974 by Chip Lord and friends. They were part of an "art" group. Since then it has become a roadside attraction that people can "decorate" with spray paint. 
 We stopped at a Travel Center of America just past Amarillo to eat breakfast. Took about an hour. 
Just a lonely tree all by itself on the Texas plains. That was kind of the scenery for much of the first part of the drive. 
 As we got closer to Groom Texas we could see the big cross from about five miles away. [sorry about the bugs on the windshield]
 Here is a better picture of it as we passed. See the tiny cars parked near it. It is 190 feet tall. 
 And just beyond the cross - going East - is the leaning water tower. It used to be a real water tower but when it was slated for demolition it was bought and moved to a truck stop as an attraction for tourists. The truck stop burned several years ago but the tower still stands. 
 And on into Oklahoma. Oklahoma is pretty this time of year. Lots of greenery set in the red dirt.
We finally stopped for the day just west of Oklahoma City at the Rockwell RV Park. But before stopping for the night we made a pit stop at a truck stop so Bill could wash the bugs off the windshield. Almost couldn't see out it. He also got something to eat - so no cooking tonight. And I had a wonderful caramel sunday. Haven't had one in years. 
So with entering another time zone and two stops for food and one for fuel we didn't get here till 3:30 Central time. Did 362 miles today. For some reason we can't get the satellite TV working. Hopefully it is just because of the tree next to us and tomorrow it will work fine...fingers crossed. We figure we'll be home sometime Saturday. Then the work begins. Cleaning, unpacking and getting the house ready to put on the market. Though - Bill's allergies are under control - at least for now. 

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Long day on the I-40 through New Mexico

Leaving USA RV Park in Gallup, NM about 7:45 this morning. It rained hard during the night but when we left the sky was blue. But it didn't stay that way. I guess we were traveling faster than the weather was. 
 We stopped about 20 miles down the road to eat breakfast. And look at the weather going down hill. The temperatures were dropping fast too.  
 After breakfast as we walked back to the Alfa we passed this colorful "Cannabus."
 As I said colorful...
Finally going over the Continental Divide at 7300 feet. So we should be going downhill right? Wrong - we eventually got up to 7500 feet. 
And got into RAIN - really really cold rain. Surprised it wasn't frozen. And remembered we never bought the new windshield wipers. UGH!
 Eventually around Albuquerque we got into some sun shine again. One of the decorative overpasses. 
 Just a lonely windmill out in the field. No wind to move it. 
But the no wind didn't last. By the time we passed east of Moriarty the wind began. A look at the long road ahead. In places the wind was hard enough to shake us pretty good. 
 Some body's forgotten dream on old Route 66. 
We stopped for the day in Tucumcari, NM at 1:30. 323 miles closer to home. We both really like this little town. The Mother Road runs right through it. There are murals all over town - great ones. And some of the old motels still remain. Neon lights and all. 
We stopped at our favorite campground - Kiva RV - and discovered it was closed - a major problem with it's electrical supply. Not sure if it will ever reopen. Sure hope it does.
So we stopped at the RV park next door - Cactus RV. Here is the Alfa and Willie enjoying the blue sky. 
This RV park USED to be a motel. This is what is left of the motel. One room has been removed so the RV can go to the back of the property. We were actually parked in the front courtyard.
    A closer look at the old rooms. I like the step rail.
 Walking to dinner we passed an empty field. Couldn't resist taking pictures of the flowers growing there. 

 Isn't Nature wonderful. Just an empty deserted lot. One of the murals - the lettering, motorcycle. car and doors are just paint. 
 One of the old motels - this one is still open. 
 This is where we ate dinner. We eat here everytime we come through. I love the liver and onions and bacon. YUM
 This is a picture inside the restaurant - I LOVE it. Every time we're there I stop and drool over it. Good thing we don't have any room to hang it.  
By afternoon it really warmed up around here. Hopefully the weather holds until we get home. Tomorrow we'll head out again. Into Texas and maybe as far as Oklahoma City...
I was surprised to see another Greyhound bus today - none for years and then two in two days. We also saw a "Big Red Bus" first one I've seen in the US. We see them all the time in Mexico. They are tour buses usually filled with German tourists. It is amazing to see them set up when they stop for a night. 
Diesel is still reasonable at $2.65 at Flying J. 

Monday, April 27, 2015

Left Las Vegas - Arrived Gallup, NM

Finally we are again on our way home. 428 miles closer - 1430 left to go!
We left the Thousand Trails park this morning at 8:30
 Heading towards Arizona - A quick shot of Lake Mead. Didn't see any of the Mountain Goats. And this time I had my camera ready. Oh well/.
 Getting ready to cross the bridge. There was some wind when we left Vegas - so the sign was appropriate. "High Profile Vehicles Use Left Lane Next 1 Mile" So we did. Especially going over the bridge. 
We stopped about 10 miles east of Kingman at a Petro Truck Stop to have breakfast at the Iron Skillet. As always very good and way too much food. 
As we continued towards Flagstaff we saw the snow on the mountains. Some of it was added in the last couple of days. 
 Not quite so much snow on these lower mountains. We got up to 7300 feet. 
Once past Flagstaff we passed the old Two Arrows Route 66 site. Some times we've seen people driving classic cars stopped here taking pictures. 
 Didn't get a really good picture of this - the old Two Arrows Trading Post. Falling into ruin now. Too bad. 
At about 6000 feet - we could see forever. Miles and miles of flat land. Blue sky and puffy white clouds. So pretty. And the desert is green. 
 So many colors in the desert. Some red hills, blue sky, white clouds, yellow and green plants. 
Oh my gosh - an actual Greyhound bus. I haven't seen one in years. If asked I'd have probably said they weren't in business any more. 
The weather today for driving was perfect. After we got past Kingman the wind let up. As you can see the smoke?steam? from the stacks is going straight up. The weather was perfect - about 65 degrees out. Cool enough for me and with the sun coming in the window it was warm enough for Bill. 
And there wasn't too much construction. And what there was was short and easy to go through. And most of I-40 has now been repaved. Only a couple of really rough spots. 
 More colors in the desert - this hill was a real pale shade of yellow.
 A kind of strange looking rock.
So anyway we got to the USA RV Park in Gallup, New Mexico at 6:05 - a change in time zones. 8 1/2 hours later. Travel time included a stop for breakfast and one for fuel. So really only 7 1/2 hours driving time. 428 miles - about 200 more than we'd planned on. But that's the way it goes. We like staying at the USA RV Park. Long pull-throughs, all services, including good WiFi and if you want cable TV. $32.50 a night. Supposed to get down to mid 30s tonight. Electric blanket time for sure. 
Took this around sunset - see the little ghost in the sky? The bright spot. 
 A closer look at him. 
Checked the weather and it is supposed to be good all the way across New Mexico for tomorrow. Just remembered I need to change my watch and laptop times. 
While we were in Mexico I was complaining that we didn't have TV. Now I'm tired of listening and watching it. Well except for the races and soccer.