Oasis in the Desert

Monday, November 28, 2011


AGE IS FACTOR FOR FULL-TIMERS as things in your body seem to start to change, if you are lucky, it is gradual and not overwhelming.  If not so lucky, it can be a serious illness that can put you down for awhile.  We have been lucky.  In our 10 years, we have not really had anything that kept us down.  Oh, we had our gallbladders out and Herb had a kidney stone.  Both considered day surgeries in this age and time and there was a quick recovery in both cases.

Eat Right and Stay Healthy
STAYING IN ONE PLACE AND WORKKAMPING can make life less iffy, if you are close to a town.  Walmart will transfer meds most everywhere and Medicare and a good supplement works most everywhere.  Those folks who boondock tend to be younger, well late 50ish or so.  We read of a 70 year old lady found in the Old Fat Man blog on backpacking in the desert.

She is much more healthy than I ever hope to be. Kudos to her and the amazing photos in her blog. Today, we went to visit a dermatologist, a frequent event as the skin begins to show its many years of soaking up the sun.  Because this is a small town, it was simple as they took our insurance.  That made it easy for us to tend to newly arising bumps and lumps.

The Future - A Snowbird's Dream

The Past
If you are planted in your reclining chair and this is your future....boring.  More to Come C, H, and Boo too  PS  most fulltimers have pets.  Pets are good medicine.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Sin City Revisited with Pics

WE VISITED LAS VEGAS ON TUESDAY TO PICK UP A FEW THINGS AT CAMPING WORLD AND SEE THE FALL DECO AT THE BELLAGIO in the solarium.  The flowers are just spectacular and we treat outselves to a good lunch in the restaurant that looks over the amazing display.  I am always surprised at the bustle and hustle on the strip in LV.  Lots of folks and many with children,  small children in strollers.  We lucked out and saw the dancing waters in front of the Bellagio.  Luciano Pavarotti sings beautifully with the extravaganza.  We will stay at the Paris in December when we go to deliver our Camping World literature.

Front of the horses

Pumpkin wagon

Mr. Tree talks and winks

Herb at the water wheel

A lovely water feature

The Back of the horses

All flowers...sweet

Mr. Tree is happy

Lunch at the Bellagio Cafe...YUM

GREAT MEAL AT THE MESQUITE SENIOR CITIZENS CENTER on Wednesday.  We went with another couple from our RV park and enjoyed the great food.  It is for everyone in the town.  There are few people who are down and out in Mesquite.  So, everyone there was mainly just seniors.  They didn't have a great turnout and we could have eaten twice.  I felt badly for all the homeless people we see in Las Vegas as there would have been plenty for them.

After our Thanksgiving dinner, it was time to work off a few calories.  Bright sunshine on the desert made for a beautiful day.  Starting at the Solstice clubhouse, we took a brief tour of some of the resort's amentities.

The club house at Solstice

The fire pit on a great day

Wow, the scenery and the grill

Bocce Ball court

Looks like a picture, walking trail

THANKSGIVING DAY AND BOO BOO ESCAPES from his leash.  Herb decides that since it is such a nice day that the cat should take a walk.  The cat had other ideas.  He quickly wiggled out of the collar and headed for the biggest, fanciest rig and its underside.  We had all our neighbors trying to lure him out, but he finally just came home on his own, like it was no big deal.  Everyone in the park was outside celebrating the nice weather and good company...a really great dias de gracias.  More to Come.  C, H, and Boo too.

Thursday, November 17, 2011


THREE RV'S AND THREE HOUSES and here we are again in the RV.  It is interesting that most folks who live fulltime in their Rig are really not social creatures.  There are lots of campgrounds that winter snowbirds call their home and they love the social events that are planned for them.  We have found that the folks we work with like to say hi and that's all there is to the relationship.  You do meet lots of great folks...only for a short time.

THIS RIG WAS BOUGHT TO BE A TRAVEL NOW AND THEN RIG but life has a way of changing our minds.  The house was just too much of a weight in our lives and we yearned to move around.  The weekend trip just wasn't enough to fill the empty glass.  So,  we have adjusted and moved into the smaller rig.  Well, not so small, but smaller than any we have previously called our home. It is easy to manage and much easier to drive than a 38 foot fifth wheel with a pickup towing.  Certainly, there is less stress for Herb, who is the driver.

HERE IS THE SPACE that is occupied by Herb, Cindy, and really organized by the cat, Boo Boo.  It is a small decorative area up front with a nice TV.  The cat owns that space.  Next there is the living area with two reclining chairs and a sofa.  The cat owns that too.  Voila, the kitchen is next.  Spacious and it drives one to eat out and only cook food that is microwave friendly.  Cat is the boss of that area.

SLEEPING QUARTERS WITH A TV OF ITS OWN and a queen size bed.  Oh yes, in between is a spacious bathroom with a shower, potty, kitty's sandbox, food box, and again just his area.  The bedroom is sufficient for sleeping.  Maybe too close to the other TV....BUT, there is a door to shut it off.  Guess who owns that area.  Yes, you right...the CAT.  More to come...C, H, and Boo Too

Monday, November 14, 2011

RVing is NOT free of honey-do's

WE READ A LOT OF GOOD BLOGS written by folks who are just starting their life of "fulltiming" and others who are many years into their adventure.  It is interesting to me that there are good people who choose to park in state and county parks or just wherever they land and not necessarily be highly social.  Some have pets and some just name their RV and associated parts.  They all have interesting and adventure-some lives and we really enjoy reading about their adventures.  Some are listed on the side of our blog.

WE HEAD OUT TODAY TO DO "NECESSARY THINGS"  as they come up in our version of fulltiming.  We have had a "going flat" tire on the outside tire of our dually tires in the back of the rig.  We had our service plan come out and fill it up but, that did not fix it.  So, today we drove down the mountain to have it fixed.  It was still somewhat aired and the second tire supported the ride to WalMart. We had an appointment and they had Herb park the rig behind the repair bays.  Two very nice hispanic guys came out, used a jacklift and removed the tire.  After checking for leaks, they decided that the extension valve was faulty.  They put it all back together and sent us off with no charges.  Nice folks in Mesquite NV at our neighborhood WalMart.

PROPANE PROBLEMS...OR NOT in our case.  This class C has a very small propane tank.  10 gallons is not much.  Even a lowly propane grill tank contains 5 gallons.  We have our ways of conserving.  We use an electric catalytic space heater (oxygen sparing) to warm up the interior if it is cold.  We do have central heat, but keep it set at 60 degrees.  Also, we only turn on our hot water heater when needed and before showers.  Solar panels are a tempting addition, but we are not sure if we would be good "boondockers".

How did he get up there?
BOO BOO THE CAT is very set in his ways and any change will send him into explorer mode.  Today, we cleaned and decorated a little and he was in on the fun.  More to come...H, C, and Boo too

Boo Boo looking over his domain

Saturday, November 12, 2011


DRIVING IN LAS VEGAS is certainly less confusing than was the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex.  We just finished our Camping World rounds and it took a full five days to cover the territory.  The towns are far apart.  It was a fun and interesting drive.We traveled about 700 miles.  We left Mesquite, drove to Las Vegas and spent three nights there.  We had three comp nights in a large hotel on the strip.  It was crowded and noisy and EXPENSIVE.  We could barely afford coffee at the Burger King located in the casino.  This is the first hotel room we have stayed in that did not have a coffee pot.  Coffee delivered to the room was $12 for FOUR cups.  The medium cup at Burger King was $2.00 apiece.  We did not leave any money at the hotel so, we will see if the comps appear again.  We already have them for next month.

LAS VEGAS TO PAHRUMP is a drive of about 60 miles to the west.  Pahrump has 1700 RV sites and the interesting fact is that it is the only city in Nevada where prostitution is legal.  However, we did not see any signs of that sort of activity.  It seemed to be a popular destination for Snowbirds and most of the 1700 spaces were occupied.  The parks there were friendly and happy to see us.  The couple previous to us had done an excellent job and made it easy for us to find our way around and be welcomed at each park.

The Sidewinder Grille in Needles, CA
LAS VEGAS DRIVING is pretty straight forward as there is one road north and south, one east and west and a circular around the city.  There is lots of traffic during rush hour, but we tried to avoid that time and made our rounds in one pretty easy day.  We used the good directions from the previous GWA's and our GPS to get around.  You really don't see the economic problems that plague the city, except the homeless are a presence every where you travel.  There have been many hit by cars as they cross the street.  It is a sad situation and the news reports that the unemployment rate is 29%.  I noticed that in almost every restaurant we frequented that the servers were male.

Guard booth sign says "Hi, I'm Hillary Clinton.
I was hoping to be your 44th President.  Oh well!!  Have a nice day!"
SOUTH TO CAL-NEV-ARI and to three states in one day.  We visited 20 campgrounds in the one day.  They are in clustered in Needles, CA, Mojave, AZ, Bullhead City, AZ and Laughlin, NV.  It has been chilly for a few days and the snowbirds are not happy about it.  Never the less, most campgrounds were nearly full.

THE RETURN TO MESQUITE completed our roundtrip.  There are very nice parks in Mesquite.  There is one we had not seen on the north end of town with 340 spaces.  We like where we are because we are not really into the many activities the snowbird campgrounds plan for their visitors.  Guess we are true nomads.  We also drove north out of town to two parks.  The Arizona border is just on the north edge of town so, we visit AZ once again.

BOO BOO SURVIVED three nights of boarding at a very nice Vet clinic in downtown Mesquite.  They said he was a little hissy at first. but settled in.  He was very happy to see us.  He has been on one of our laps since we returned.  They said he would be welcomed back.  The last time we boarded him in Texas, they asked us not to bring him back.  He does have very bad memories of his several procedure visits to the vet.  We really enjoy our cat.  He does not require walking in the cold early morning and gives a little lovin' when it suits him.  Lots more to come....C, H, and Boo too

Monday, November 7, 2011


SNOW ON THE MOUNTAINS and a lot of rain in the desert.  Mesquite looks very pretty now.  When we lived in Colorado, we had a friend who lived in a small town in the mountains and she always said it was so ugly until the snow covered the ground.  I understand what she meant now.  I really hadn't even noticed the mountains much.  They just look like high desert.  BUT, they are so pretty with snow.  Of course, there is no snow here at 2,000 feet, only cold rain and those who have spent the fall here before say that the cold is unusual and early.

HAM, HAM, AND MORE HAM from the 4.99 breakfast in one of the casinos.  Food used to be a real bargain at casinos.  Las Vegas is just out of site with the cost of food now.  We had a breakfast there last year and it was nothing for almost 30 bucks.  Mesquite is kind of a throwback to the past.  Anyway,  we had two giant ham steaks.  With the leftovers, we had ham and beans and a great big breakfast this morning.  We will return to that again.  Also, had a prime rib dinner for $5.99.  It was very good.

PICTURES FROM THE DRIVE AND MESQUITE are finally on their way.  We take a lot of pictures.  More photos later.  Tomorrow we travel to Pahrump, NV via Las Vegas.

Caprock Canyon is a refuge for bison
A roadrunner joined us at the campsite

Campsite at Caprock Canyon

Fort Sumner NM

I guess I'll pay admission next time

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Internet At Last

CONNECTIVITY IS A BLESSED GIFT, especially when you have been without for it at least a week.  This park has wifi reception right down the middle of the park, but not on the sides.  We are now in the middle and we are nicely connected again.

THIS IS A NEW TERRAIN FOR US as we are used to trees and grass growing naturally and usually in abundance.  This summer was the exception in Oklahoma as the drought kept it dry and the grass just didn't grow.  Here it is very moonlike and beautiful in a different sort of way.  The buttes and rock formations are a real change for us flatlanders.  When the wind goes to the north here, the sand just blows around.

LAS VEGAS VISITED yesterday as we visited the Camping World stores.  It is a busy city that has weathered the bad economy in the best way it can.  There is new construction and many vacant buildings.  The Strip is just another world away from the life of most of the people in LV.  Many of the work in the industry and it seems to be weathering the storm.

MESQUITE NEVADA is an interesting town with three large Casinos, a population of 20,000 and one Super WalMart.  The are six world class golf courses and a LOT of retired folks.  There is a large Del Webb retirement community to the west of the city.  You wonder how people find this place.  It its located on the main route from Salt Lake City to Las Vegas to Los Angeles.  Interstate 15 is a busy freeway.  The town has suffered from the economy as one large casino complex has closed.  The other three seem busy and we find the food to be priced reasonably and very good.

MORE TO COME in the way of pictures.  C, H, and Boo too  PS  The cat is feeling much better now.