Monday, December 31, 2018

Day 149, Monday, December 31, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 24

Monday, December 31, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 24 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Warmer last night, only down to 42°F. Unfortunately, it didn't warm up much during the day, hitting 50°F for a high. I didn't do much besides sitting in the trailer reading & trying to keep warm. I try to avoid running the furnace during the day to save both propane and amp hours on the batteries, particularly on days like today when we have heavy cloud cover all day. I finished Up Country by Nelson DeMille. Brought back many memories of Viet Nam, particularly since much of the novel took place in the area I was in. A different division, but many of the same towns, cities, and the A Shau Valley.

Dinner was early - a chicken pot pie.

Until Tomorrow -

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Day 148, Sunday, December 30, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 23

Sunday, December 30, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 23 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Another night that was at 30°F by morning. It did warm up more quickly than yesterday, and hit 63°F for a high. My before breakfast walk was up one of the near by washes. Not the easiest walking - soft gravel, although there were plenty of vehicle tracks. I didn't go all the way to the end, but did 45 minutes worth of walking.

After breakfast I did some reading, then moved outside once it reached 60°F. I drove to the La Posa South dump station to see if it was still open (it, and the water fill stations are).

That was about it for the day. It is getting less & less crowded in this section. Two of my neighbors decided to move to La Posa South. They have a group of friends arriving after New Year, and want to have room for all of them.

Dinner was a Beyond Bugger, chips, peaches, and the rest of the tapioca pudding for dessert.

Until Tomorrow -

Saturday, December 29, 2018

Day 147, Saturday, December 29, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 22

Saturday, December 29, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 22 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

The coolest night so far at Quartzsite; 30°F at sunrise. It was cool enough last night that the furnace started cycling at 7:45PM. I guess I'd better check the propane tanks a bit more often with the colder weather since I may be needing a refill sooner than 12 days last tank lasted.

After my walk I fired up the water heater & did dishes. Since I'm heating the water with propane, I only fire it up when needed, doing dishes every 2-3 days rather than my usual right after eating.

Around 11:00 I headed to Parker. Nothing I really needed, mostly for something to do. Gas is quite a bit cheaper in Parker. Over the last couple of years it has always bee at least $.10 per gallon more, today, at $2.49, it is almost $.20 cheaper. There are two Colorado Indian gas stations in town that were not open last year; they may be the ones driving the prices down, but even the chain stations are cheaper than in Quartzsite.

I stopped in at the Parker Walmart & Safeway, filled up the ice chest with some stuff that is hard to find in Quartzsite, then headed back to the campground. Still a cool day at only 55°F for a high.

I managed to find my Oswego Town tax bill (includes county, fire, library, community college, & highway) on line, so I'll be able to pay it without needing to call the town clerk to get the amount. I can't complain - I get a 25% reduction for being a Viet Nam combat veteran. We have separate school & town taxes, but for New York, they are pretty reasonable.

Since I bought a sub & ate it on the way back from Parker, dinner was a salad & some cottage cheese and some tapioca pudding for dessert.

Until Tomorrow -

Friday, December 28, 2018

Day 146, Friday, December 28, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 21

Friday, December 28, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 21 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

So, it has been three weeks at Quartzsite. As far as I can tell, it is a bit cooler this year than last, but last year was one of the nicest since I've been in the area, so maybe this is normal. In any case, the high for today was 56°F, although last night wasn't quite as cold as the night before at 41°F.

I spent part of the day on the phone with Spectrum. My son back in Oswego is having internet problems, and since I'm the "owner" of the service, they won't talk to him. Hard to try to solve the problem a couple thousand miles from the modem & router! I did finally talk them into adding him as an authorized person, so at least he will be able to talk to them in the future.

I also talked with a friend & mentor currently retired in Florida. He fell, fractured his skull and broke his hand. As he said, getting old sucks, but so does the alternative.

I drove to La Posa South to check the dumpsters there. They also dumped them, but the roll off is still sitting there filled to overflowing. There is now a sign at the entrance to all the sections that states "Due to the shutdown, some services may not be available." So far, that only seems to be no toilet paper in the vault toilets.

I spent the rest of the day reading. Current book is Stephen King's The Tommyknockers.

Dinner was a Boston Market Orange Chicken dinner cooked in the oven. I appreciate the additional warmth of 45 minutes of baking at 350°F!

Until Tomorrow -

Thursday, December 27, 2018

Day 145, Thursday, December 27, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 20

Thursday, December 27, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 20 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

I did another walk around the campground & under I 10 for my morning exercise, then made breakfast. I tried decaf coffee, and it wasn't too bad. Back home I kept a bag of Gourmet Hotel Decaf beans from Hyman Smith's Restaurant Supply. The best decaf I've ever had. Even my daughter loved it - I'd send her a bag every once in a while, even to Botswana.

The big event for the day was going to town for to refill one of my propane tanks. It is getting pretty boring when that is a big event, but whatever. I made it 12 days on the last tank. A bit less than last year, but I have the thermostat set at 60°F rather than the 57°F I set it for last year, so the amount used seems OK.

It has cooled off. Warm & sunny this morning, at least after the sun was up for awhile (it was 39°F at 6:30AM), but clouds have moved in and it is down to 60°F at 2:45. The batteries are almost full, so I can live with the clouds, but I'd like it 10°F warmer.

I just took the trash to the dumpsters. Someone emptied them since last night. I don't know if they also did those at the main campground (La Posa South). We only have 4, and they were full, but not overflowing. The South campground has 8 & a large roll off bin, all of which were overflowing last evening. In any case, I'm glad someone is dealing with the trash.

Dinner was the same as last night; a couple of burritos made with leftover grilled chicken & applesauce. The chicken breasts I bought were the largest I've seen. Must have come from a 15 pound chicken! I only cooked one, I've had 3 meals already, and there are probably 2 more to go.

Until Tomorrow -

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Day 144, Wednesday, December 26, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 19

Wednesday, December 26, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 19 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Instead of going for coffee this morning, I did my 2 miles in the campground. When I got back to the trailer I had oatmeal & coco for breakfast. I have to say the coco was OK, but doesn't have the "zing" of coffee. It is also much harder to wash out the cup!

I did my usual reading, both on the computer, and Robert R. McCammon's Baal. I've read a couple of his books, but this was one I missed. Not his best, but then.

I drove to the South La Posa area to check the status of the dump & water fill stations for a couple of people on their way to Quartzsite. Everything (but the offices) is open, the trash dumpsters are overflowing, and there is no toilet paper in the vault toilets. After that I drove to Family Dollar for some decaf coffee & another batch of bottled water.

Dinner was a couple of burritos made with grilled chicken & applesauce. It was windy enough that it took forever to grill the chicken!

Until Tomorrow -

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Day 143, Tuesday, December 25, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 18

Tuesday, December 25, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 18 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the

Merry Christmas!

I did my usual walk for coffee this morning. Last year they gave it away on Christmas, but this morning it was $1.09. I only filled my travel mug half way (12 ounces) since one of the suggestions from the doctor yesterday was to cut down on caffeine. I'll probably try to pick up a smaller mug. I have over a dozen buried in a closet at home, mostly give aways from organizations, but only the 24 ounce one here in Quartzsite. I guess I should actually stop drinking any coffee, but right now that feels impossible. Before retiring, there was a continuous coffee pot in the shop, and I probably went through 5-6 cups per day, I cut back after retiring to just a mug of coffee with breakfast (and, when on the road, a second 12 ounce mug during the first fuel or bathroom break). While I have no problem giving up the second mug of coffee, the breakfast one is going to be tough!

Around 11:00 I headed to Sweet Darlene's for their Christmas Turkey Dinner. Just barely OK; the various sides & salad were good, but the turkey & stuffing left a lot to be desired. I sure do miss cooking a Plainville Turkey!

Back at the trailer I called my brother Dave on Nantucket Island, my son in Oswego, and Skyped with my daughter in Oceanside, NY (they are visiting Brian's mother & family). I tried to reach Don & Anne, but no luck.

While all that was going on, I was making some corrections in this year's trip journal that I discovered paging through it putting together the Christmas newsletter.

While it is partly cloudy, the batteries are very close to fully recharged, so I may use the rest of the afternoon to update some of my RV links. Well, that's what I did. To see the updates, check the first section on the RV Links Page.

Dinner was a salad, all I wanted after being stuffed with turkey.

Until Tomorrow -

Monday, December 24, 2018

Day 142, Monday, December 24, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 17

Monday, December 24, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 17 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

After my walk for coffee, I spent the morning doing laundry & my usual shower during the dryer run. No problems with hot water this time. I suspect there wasn't a problem last time either, just user adjustment of the controls. In any case, new sheets on the bed & the closets are full. I caught my neighbor driving by & gave her a couple of already read horror books (she mentioned that it was her favorite genre for reading). Anything to reduce the pile of books in the back of the truck. There are still about 20 left. Time to get back on the Kindle!

I got a thank you for the Christmas newsletter from a couple I met in Florida. They sent a link to their travel blog. Very well written, and a joy to read. It was interesting to meet them - they taught at another SUNY not too far from Oswego.

After lunch I did some reading, then went to the La Paz Medical Center for my doctor's appointment. I'm still having problems with my stomach, and decided to get things checked out. He didn't find anything serious, suggested some changes in medication & timing, and to stop back in a couple of weeks if things don't improve.

Dinner was cream of chicken & wild rice soup.

Until Tomorrow -

Sunday, December 23, 2018

Day 141, Sunday, December 23, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 16

Sunday, December 23, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 16 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

No new news of the effect of the shutdown on the campground. After breakfast at the Bad Boy Cafe, I came back to the trailer, did some reading, both on line & a book, then put together my Christmas Newsletter. I've been sending an emailed newsletter rather than Christmas cards for the last couple of years. I'm sorry I miss those without email addresses, but my mailing list is probably outdated, so half the cards wouldn't get there.

That was about it for the day.

Dinner was a Marie Callender's Sweet & Savory Sesame Chicken Microwaved dinner.

Until Tomorrow -

Saturday, December 22, 2018

Day 140, Saturday, December 22, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 15

Another Quartzsite Sunset
Saturday, December 22, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 15 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Another nice sunset last night, so I'll add a photo. Not too much else to take pictures of. I did have a nice chat around the campfire with a couple of my neighbors. As the cloud cover cleared, it cooled off, but it was still in the mid 50's around 8:00PM, although 40°F at 6:00AM. My new blanket isn't any warmer than the poncho liner, in fact, not as warm. Around 6:00AM I unfolded the poncho liner and added it to the pile. I'd prefer not to use it since it is pretty impervious to water vapor, ie you can feel damp wrapped up in it. That is probably why it keeps you warm even though it is light & thin. In any case, I wanted it this morning!

So far, the only thing shut down by the government shutdown is the entrance stations. I went to renew my 14 day permit, and both the West & South La Posa entrance stations were closed, with signs stating closed because of the shutdown. No chains across the gates; I suspect that would be a problem since there are 100's of RVs in each of the 4 sections. I checked, and as of this morning, the water fill & dump stations were open. Since they closed during last year's shutdown, who knows for how long? The vault toilets were open.

I checked again at 5:00 & everything but the offices were still open.

Dinner was Tai Pei Orange Chicken.

Until Tomorrow -

Friday, December 21, 2018

Day 139, Friday, December 21, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 14

Quartzsite Sunset
Friday, December 21, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 14 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Unfortunately, I can't say "another nice day in Quartzsite". Heavy clouds without even a peak at the sun. I only gained about 6 amp hours, so I'm down 20 for the day. Tomorrow is predicted to be mostly cloudy - we will see. We did have a nice sunset last night.  A large 1.2MB version.

I got the tracking number for a package from my daughter, checked & it has arrived at Quiet Times (the best place to ship packages to in Quartzsite since General Delivery usually has huge lines, and FedEx & UPS don't deliver to the campground). I stopped by & picked it up. $2.00 charge by Quiet Times. 

After that it was off to the Dollar General for a blanket. It has been cold enough that I've been getting out my poncho liner and throwing it over me in the middle of the night. For those not familiar with poncho liners, they are a lightweight filled nylon camouflage blanket that we used in Viet Nam as bedding. I got so used to them that I bought a couple when I got back to the states. Expensive, but very warm, they dry quickly, and as I mentioned, very lightweight. So lightweight that they tend to slide off the bed as you move around. So, a second blanket may do the trick. At least I'm back to my Southwestern theme bedspread instead of jungle themed camouflage covering the bed.

After that stopped in the entrance office to check if I could renew my 14 day permit today. I can't without loosing a day so I'll do it tomorrow if they are open. Back at the trailer, I Skyped Karin to let her know I got the package. Found out why Skype wouldn't let me talk the other day. For some reason, permission for Skype to use the computer's microphone was turned off. I turned it on & it is working fine.

The rest of the day was spent reading and hanging around the trailer, mostly inside since it is in the low 60's without the sun.

Dinner will be an egg burrito & salad; I'm posting early while I still have some incoming solar energy.

Until Tomorrow -

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Day 138, Thursday, December 20, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 13

Thursday, December 20, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 13 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Hate to say it, but another quiet day at Quartzsite. About all I did other than sit around reading was to make a stop at the La Posa South entrance station to pick out some books from their "trade 1 for 1" shelf. I picked up 5, and they had so many that they were not taking any in exchange. The back of my truck is getting full.

One of the Class A RV's next door left yesterday. It is tempting to move a bit uphill, but I don't think I'm going to do it until I have to go dump. If I was smart, I'd do it tomorrow, since it still sounds like there will be a government shutdown over the weekend. I was here for one of the previous ones, and while they didn't close the gates to the camping areas, they did shut down the dump station & water fill stations. Still, I'm still showing empty on the gray tank, 1/3 full on the black, and 2/3 full on the fresh water, so I still have a couple of weeks to go before needing to dump & fill. I need to renew my permit on Saturday, assuming they are open.

Dinner was a chicken patty & salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Day 137, Wednesday, December 19, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 12

A Visiting Hummingbird
Wednesday, December 19, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 12 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Another clear, warm (73°F) day at Quartzsite. I spent most of the morning (after the walk for coffee) sitting out in the sun reading. The batteries were up enough that I didn't have any problem microwaving a Healthy Choice dinner for lunch. More sitting outside, this time with the Nikon D850 & my first generation 70mm-200mm f:2.8 lens taking hummingbird photos. I need to move the feeder - all the photos have the nearby bush busying up the image. In any case, there are the first of this year's hummingbird photos at today's LakeshoreImages page. I'm sure there will be more.

After that I made a run to Family Dollar for some bottled water, then to the Roadrunner Market for a bagged salad.

Since I had a good sized lunch, I only had cheese & crackers with a salad for dinner.

Until Tomorrow -

Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Day 136, Tuesday, December 18, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 11

A Weak Rainbow Over the Campground
Tuesday, December 18, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 11 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Happy 12th birthday to my granddaughter Valerie!

I took a photo of a very weak rainbow after dinner yesterday. It never rained here at the campground, but we had lots of clouds. A strip cleared as the sun was setting, and I guess there was some rain towards the east.

Today was another nice day at Quartzsite. Lots of sun; the batteries are back to full. I didn't do much other than read.

Dinner was the rest of yesterday's grilled chicken thigh.

Until Tomorrow -

Monday, December 17, 2018

Day 135, Monday, December 17, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 10

Monday, December 17, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 10 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Another quiet day at Quartzsite (Didn't I say that yesterday?) In any case, quite a bit warmer during the morning, but it never really warmed up like yesterday. Only in the low 60's for a high. A little after noon I headed into town for a haircut. I found a beauty salon across from the Main Street Laundromat, got my usual #3 buzz, then headed across the street for a shower. They gave me a key for stall #8. First, no washcloth. No big deal, but the next problem was room temperature hot water, ie it wasn't hot! Of course, by the time I discovered that I was already undressed and half wet, so I went ahead and had a quick shower. I complained on the way out & they said they would check it out...

Back at the trailer I had lunch, then tried sitting outside. It was OK until a bit more wind arrived, which drove me beck into the trailer. So, I'm inside reading. Current book is Herman Koch's Summer House With Swimming Pool. Originally written in Dutch & translated to English. So far a very interesting read.

Dinner was a grilled chicken thigh & pickled beets.

Until Tomorrow -

Sunday, December 16, 2018

Day 134, Sunday, December 16, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 9

Sunday, December 16, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 9 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Another quiet day at Quartzsite. I walked for coffee in the morning wearing a hat, gloves, & a quilted coat at 39°F. A woman walked past me wearing shorts and a thin, sleeveless top. My excuse for being slow was that she passed me needing to move fast to keep warm! On the way back to the trailer, the sun came out & I had the gloves off & the zipper down on the coat. I know it is the same sun here as in Oswego, and only 500' or so higher altitude, but the sun in Quartzsite (and most of the West) is much hotter than back East.

After coffee & reading a few blogs & forums, I sat outside and read for most of the rest of the day. Mid afternoon was 72°F and plenty of sun. During the afternoon I phoned my son in Oswego. No snow, but it is raining. He said that so far it has been a pretty snowless winter. Of course there is still January & February! I made a Facetime call to Don & Anne, the friends I traveled with for the first couple of months of this year's adventure (my son won't do FaceTime, Skype, or anything but a basic phone...) Don & Anne are doing fine, have their Christmas decorations up, and will be heading to North Carolina for Christmas. I hung my felt Casita decoration I received from another fiberglass trailer owner a few years back, so Christmas decorating is done. I may put together a Christmas email next week, but won't be doing cards from here in the desert.

Dinner was a Turkey Bubba Burger & the last of the salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Saturday, December 15, 2018

Day 133, Saturday, December 15, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 8

Saturday, December 15, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 8 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

I stuck my head outside the trailer door at 10:30PM, and again at midnight, and there were no stars in the sky (well, they were there, but covered by clouds). So, no more meteor photos. I guess I'm lucky I got one, although I did better a few years back at Devil's Tower.

/the big adventure for the day was to refill one of my 20 pound propane tanks, as well as my 5 pound grill tank. I went to Herb's Hardware where I filled my tanks last year, but their propane set up was gone. I did pick up a large "U" bolt to attach my second painter pole so I can stick up my glow ball. I picked up the propane at the 76 gas station. $2.30 per gallon, again a bit more than last year. In any case, all the tanks are full.

A very nice day with the temperature hitting the low 70's, and while cloudy during the morning walk to coffee, clear skies for the rest of the day. I sat outside & did some reading, then dug out the grill & made a Quorn "chicken" burger. The Quorn is a vegetarian chicken patty that I can't tell from real chicken. A suggestion from my vegetarian daughter. That, with a cup of peaches was dinner.

Until Tomorrow -

Friday, December 14, 2018

Day 132, Friday, December 14, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 7

Geminid Meteor Streak on Right
Friday, December 14, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 7 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

I climbed out into the frozen (well, 42°F) night to watch the Geminid Meteor Showers last night around 10:30. Saw lots of meteors, but didn't have much luck photographing them. They always seemed to streak by when the shutter was closed. I did a bunch of 20 second exposures, most with no meteor in them. In any case, here is one with both an airplane on the left and a meteor on the right.

Today was restaurant day. I went to the Bad Boy Cafe for breakfast - pancakes, bacon & one egg for $7.00. Not bad, but I really only needed one rather than 2 pancakes - they were huge. Back at the trailer I did some reading - finished T. Jefferson Parker's The Jaguar, an excellent read. I also did my usual on line reading, and Skyped with my daughter in Washington. We had to switch to Facetime; for some reason, the current version of Skype won't turn on my laptop microphone. I checked it within the Apple preferences & it works fine, as well as with Facetime, but it is dead on Skype. In any case, we had a nice chat.

Around 4:30 I headed to Sweet Darlene's for the Friday all you can eat fish dinner. Nicely fried pieces of Cod, a baked potato, & coleslaw for $10.00 (it went up $1.00 from last year). Still a good dinner worth the $.

Not sure if I'm going to venture out to try for more Geminid photos. While the sky was clear last night, it was (and still is) cloudy all day. There is also lots of spill light on the fringes of La Posa West from the buildings in town and the traffic on I 10 & AZ 95. The moon will also be out until close to 11:00.

Until Tomorrow -

Thursday, December 13, 2018

Day 131, Thursday, December 13, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 6

Thursday, December 13, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 6 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

It took longer to cool off overnight, but because of the clear skies, was down to 39°F by early morning. It warmed up into the 70's during the day with clear skies - not a cloud to shade the solar panels.

Today was laundry day. No big changes at the laundromat; same prices for both laundry & the showers. I forgot my shaving kit, so I'll go back for a shower either tomorrow or during the weekend. After putting the laundry away & making the bed, I sat outside and read. As soon as the sun ducked behind the mountains to the southwest, it cooled down enough to chase me inside the trailer. By then it was dinner time anyway.

Dinner was the last of the chicken & potato salad. Even the small chickens they use for the ready to eat bags are way too much for one person, at least me. I do remember back when I was a teenager, my father putting a rotisserie in the living room fireplace at home. Probably not good for the chimney, but he'd put one chicken per person on it, and somehow I always ate all of mine. Teenagers have a bigger stomach!

Until Tomorrow -

Wednesday, December 12, 2018

Day 130, Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 5

Wednesday, December 12, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 5 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

A cloudy morning, but around 10:00 the sun came out & stayed for the day. I called the Blythe Rite-Aid to see if my prescriptions had arrived, and all were waiting.

I've finally accepted that it is better to have your doctors call in new prescriptions, even if you have refills from the same chain, let along a different one.  The druggist at the pharmacy that has the refills has to be called to release the refill to the current pharmacy.  My own doctors do that more reliably than other pharmacies. The only hassle is there are only 3 records for pharmacies at my GP, and since I am on the road, they have to keep getting rid of old ones to add a new one. There is either a book or country wide database of pharmacies - the office finds them by zip code, then confirm the address, but they can't fill a prescription unless it is in MY records, a minor hassle of on line medical records.

A 23 mile drive on I 10 into California. Even got waved through the border check station without having to tell them I was a US citizen. Picked up my prescriptions, then drove across the street to Albertson's for a few things. They had Turkey Bubba Burgers, the first grocery store of the trip that had them.

Back at the campground, a large class A RV moved in next door. While they are fairly close to the front end of my trailer, it is a better position than when they started - their original position would have blocked my solar panels during the late afternoon. This section of La Posa West is more crowded than it has been in previous years, at least for this time in the season.

It was nice and warm out - a peak of around 72°F. I enjoyed sitting out in the sun reading for much of the afternoon.

Dinner was leftover broasted chicken & potato salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Tuesday, December 11, 2018

Day 129, Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 4

Tuesday, December 11, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 4 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Very little happening today. On my walk back from picking up coffee, I met Rudy, a Canadian that I've seen here in La Posa West for the last 3 years. Other than catching up on things, some on line & Kindle reading, that was about all I did. We had good sun for part of the day, but by early afternoon the clouds moved in. I still got close to 30 amp hours worth of charging & use, and at 3:00, was down 8 amp hours from full.

Dinner was broasted chicken & potato salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Monday, December 10, 2018

Day 128, Monday, December 10, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 3

Tilted Solar Panels
Monday, December 10, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 3 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

Another cool night & cloudy day at Quartzsite. I did swivel the trailer a few degrees & tilted the solar panels. That dull spot between them is the sun. Tilting did almost double the panel output with the heavy clouds to 4 amps, but at the end of the day I'm still down 10 amp hours. Let's hope for sun tomorrow!

That was about it for the day. I did drive to town for a loaf of bread & some cottage cheese. As I mentioned, there are two grocery stores, The Roadrunner & The General Store. The General Store seems to have better meat, while the Roadrunner has a better overall selection of groceries, particularly fruit & vegetables. In any case, I usually stop at both. There is also a Family Dollar & Dollar General in town, both of which seem to have more groceries than most of the usual dollar stores. I generally don't bother with them, but they are there. There is also a booth that sells outdated food & over the counter drugs in the vendor area. I don't know if they actually went out of business as they were advertising last year, but the stuff they sold looked pretty bad.

I tried sitting outside, but without the sun and at 62°F, and a light breeze, it is just too cold. The inside of the trailer, ever my larger 21 does get a bit confining so I like to sit outside, but today wasn't a good day for it.

I had a good sized hot lunch, so dinner will be just a salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Sunday, December 9, 2018

Day 124, Thursday, December 6, 2018 - Triple T Mobile Home Park, Glendale, AZ

Site 94
Thursday, December 6, 2018 - Triple T Mobile Home Park, Glendale, AZ - 128.9 Miles, 7,957 Miles for the Trip

I thought I posted this, but found it in the draft folder.  Sorry about that & sorry it will be out of order.

I passed Picacho Peak on I 10 between Tucson & Phoenix. Very distinctive mountain. I can't believe I climbed to the top a few years ago. Not sure I could do it today - you have to pull yourself up some rock faces on a piece of wire rope! A very light rain for the last 1/3 of the drive.  Heavy clouds here at the park, but the rain stopped.  It is predicted to rain overnight & tomorrow.

Anyhow, I'm in site 94 at the Triple T Mobile Home Park. Not my favorite type of park, but it was in the middle of the various stops I had to make. A full hookup site on a combination of concrete & gravel for $39.00 per night (no discounts). I'm glad I carry an adapter - only a 50 amp receptacle at the pedestal. It was the only site left in the park. Close to the bathrooms, that require a code to enter - they use the last 4 digits of your phone number & as of this afternoon, it isn't working.

After setting up I spent the afternoon driving around the suburbs of Phoenix. I picked up my new MacBookPro at Apple Arrowhead, then headed to an Amazon locker to pick up a new meat thermometer. I suspect the last one is sitting on a picnic table somewhere.

I'm posting this a bit early, because I'm going to attempt to transfer everything from this Mac to the new one. Hopefully, it will work, but I suspect it is going to take most of the night.

Dinner will be a chicken patty & peaches.

Until Tomorrow -

Day 127, Sunday, December 9, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 2

Sunday, December 9, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, Day 2 - 0 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

As I've mentioned in previous year's journals, this is the point where things become a bit boring. I don't plan to move for at least 2 weeks, and more likely, 6 or so. I'll still post daily. but there may not be much happening.

As to today, a Cell report: AT&T seems to be all over the place. When I arrived, it was a -81dBm signal with 1.9Mbps down & 2.5Mbps up. 10 minutes later, 18.5Mbps down & 24.2Mbps up at the same signal strength. I tried using it to read my usual web pages, and it crapped out on me more than once. Verizon, on the other hand doesn't seem to be any more reliable. This morning it was running around -72 dBm, and 37Mbps down & 19.2Mbps up, and I while I didn't have it hang up on either web pages or listening to internet radio, tonight, while posting this page it was showing 2Mbps down & 1.4Mbps up. In any case, there is good, if erratic coverage here at La Posa West.

I walked to the 76 Station for coffee this morning. Good for some exercise, and saves about 6-8 amp hours necessary to make a 4 cup pot in the trailer. They raised the price of coffee again this year. In 2016 I filled my own 24 oz mug for $.50. In 2017 is was $.75. This morning it was $1.31. Same coffee from the same container, although I do have to say it is about the best coffee in town (at least at the places I've been).

After coffee, I hung around the trailer doing some reading, Once it was warm enough (it was 44°F this morning) I sat outside. After watching the sun go from horizon to horizon, I think I'll reposition the trailer a bit. It only has to move about 20°, but right now the solar panels are aimed perpendicular to the sun in late afternoon. I'd rather have them perpendicular at noon so I catch more of the morning sun, he time that the batteries are at their lowest. I think I can just swivel the trailer, although I'll need to hook up the truck to do it. The 500 pound tongue weight is a bit much to lift & spin, unlike those with a Boler or 13' Scamp and their 100 pound tongue weight.

Dinner was a grilled boneless chicken thigh & steamed broccoli.

Until Tomorrow -

Saturday, December 8, 2018

Day 126, Saturday, December 8, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ

La Posa West - Quartzsite
Saturday, December 8, 2018 - La Posa West, Quartzsite, AZ, 126.2 Miles, 8,082.2 Miles for the Trip

An uneventful drive once I got out of the Phoenix traffic. I arrived at the Quartzsite Long Term Visitor Area, La Posa West around 1:00, bought a 14 day pass, and after trying to level the trailer in a couple of spots, settled for 2nd best. I did want the driver's side of the trailer aimed South so I can tilt the solar panels that way. I didn't do that today but will tilt them when necessary. I'm in the same general area I was in last year but someone is in the spot I had then.

After setting up I sat out enjoying the 65°F weather. The nights are going down to the low 40's, but the days are sunny and warm for the near future. I'm not sure if it is too early, but I made a batch of hummingbird food & hung out the feeder. Well, in less than an hour, 3 different hummingbirds stopped by.

I am going to have to get used to living on batteries & solar. I've had too long a run with hookups! Remembering to turn off lights, limited use of the inverter, and planning to use electrical devices during peak sunshine times, and conserving water will take some adjusting.

Dinner was a sandwich & salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Friday, December 7, 2018

Day 125, Friday, December 7, 2018 - Triple T Mobile Home Park, Glendale, AZ, Day 2

, 0 Miles, 7,957 Miles for the Trip

When I started the transfer from the old Mac to the new one I used the Time Machine backup to do it. That was the recommendation of Apple. It was a bit slow because the backup is on a portable 4TB drive. When it started, it said it would be 5 hours to do the Documents folder. The good thing about a Time Machine Backup is it backs up everything, including the applications, settings, etc. I went to bed with the disk activity light flashing away.

This morning, the portable drive had stopped. I fired up the Mac, and believe it or not, everything works, apps, settings, and, of course the various documents. Even Dreamweaver kept its settings for my ISP, something that didn't happen when I made the move to my previous MacBookPro. I do find it pretty amazing!

While others have complained about the new keyboard, I like it. The only thing I had to change is to adjust the screen image size. The stock size is just a bit small for my old eyes.

By the way, the park is well suited for running around Glendale, Peoria, and other parts of Phoenix, but they have some serious train horn noise. I don't hear the wheels, engine, etc, but very loud horns. Good thing they don't go by too often, bad thing, one went by at 6:00AM. To the good, they have just about the best shower (and there is only one) of the trip. Individual large room with sink, toilet & shower, bench, large shower with sliding glass door, and a 1' diameter shower head. The first time I've used one; I'm impressed!

After messing around with the Mac, I headed to the nearest Safeway for some supplies before heading to Quartzsite. Unfortunately, the nearest Safeway Matilda, my GPS found was gone. I found another one about 8 miles from the park. My freezer is now as stuffed as possible. I can get usable fresh vegetables at the two small grocery stores in Quartzsite, but frozen food requires trips to Parker, 30 miles away or Blythe, 20 miles west on I 10 in California.

Other than that, I did some reading, both on the computer & my latest book, Clive Egleton's One Man Running. A new author for me, and he is British, writing for the English, which takes a bit of getting used to. I think I like it...

Dinner was a Healthy Choice Grilled Basil Chicken Steamer.

Until Tomorrow -

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Day 123, Wednesday, December 5, 2018 - Gilbert Ray Campground, Tucson, AZ

Golden Hour Lighting
Wednesday, December 5, 2018 - Gilbert Ray Campground, Tucson, AZ - 283.5 Miles, 7,828.1 Miles for the Trip

I got another early (for me) start, hitting the road at 9:00AM. Pretty boring; 280 miles on I 10, and a little on secondary roads (and an entrance/off ramp on I 19. It is a long drive through Tucson Mountain Park to the campground, on a rough but paved road with many "dips" for water runoff. No one in the office (a sign says they are on "Summer Hours"?

In any case, I drove around the A, B, & C loops looking for sites. There were plenty that would fit the 21 & truck, however many are fairly unlevel. Eventually, I picked A15, a site near the bathrooms (no showers). I needed to use the side to side levelers, but didn't need to unhook the trailer. An electric only site on desert sand with a picnic table. A very pretty site, with cactus all around it and mountains in the background. Definitely a campground I'd like to spend more time visiting when I'm not in a rush!

I took some additional photos during the "Golden Hour" as the sun went down. Great color, but not much of a sunset.  More photos at today's LakeshoreImages page.

After running around taking photos, I fired up the laptop to check the availability of cell service. A couple of reviews of the park said it was lovely, but no or poor cell service. Things must have changed since those review - AT&T had a -91dBm 4G LTE signal, with 18Mbps down & 10.1Mbps up. Verizon showed a -86dBm signal, with 44.6Mbps down & 16Mbps up, both very usable. While I didn't talk on the AT&T phone, the Verizon iPhone had no problems.

The day started out very cold at 35°F. As I headed west it warmed up, particularly as I crossed into Arizona. Here at the campground, it was 73°F around 3:00. I took a long walk dropping off the site payment at the entrance station, then sat around outside reading (with breaks to take some photos) until dinner.

My stomach is acting up (again) so dinner was simple - a salad.

Until Tomorrow -

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Day 122, Tuesday, December 4, 2018 - Siesta RV Park, Las Cruces, NM

Site 39
Tuesday, December 4, 2018 - Siesta RV Park, Las Cruces, NM - 288.2 Miles, 7,544.6 Miles for the Trip

I lied about the road noise from I 10 at the Fort Stockton RV Park. It is noticeable; I must have had the radio turned up enough to mask it. After shutting it off, you could hear most of the trucks, and even some cars. It did slow down after 11:00...

I spent the entire drive on I 10 to Las Cruces, New Mexico (with a short stop at the Fort Stockton Walmart. Gas at Walmart was $2.60, the cheapest in town). Prices go up most of the way to El Paso, then make a big drop ($2.08) just outside the city. Terrible traffic through El Paso, TX, with lots of construction & lane changes. I can't imagine what it is like during rush hour since I went through at 1:30 in the afternoon.

I'm in site 39, a water & electric site on gravel towards the back of the park for $32.00 with a Good Sam discount. They have cable TV & free WiFi that I didn't attempt to use - good AT&T & Verizon coverage.

I've been doing more miles than usual because Apple moved up the date I'm picking up a new computer in Phoenix, AZ. The original date was the 11th, now it is the 5th. They will hold it for 21 days, so I don't need to get there tomorrow. I know that if I arrived on the previously scheduled December 11th, that is still within the 21 days, but hey, it is a new toy!

I'll also be stopping at an Amazon locker for a package. If everything goes as scheduled, I should be able to pick up both on the 6th.

Dinner was a microwaved Eating Well Creamy Pesto Chicken. Very good!

Until Tomorrow -

Monday, December 3, 2018

Day 121, Monday, December 3, 2018 - Fort Stockton RV Park, Fort Stockton, TX

Site 25
Monday, December 3, 2018 - Fort Stockton RV Park, Fort Stockton, TX - 267.7 Miles, 7,256.4 Miles for the Trip

Well, I opened the door to the truck this morning, and it was squealing again. After packing up, I started to head to the local Ford dealer, but about 1/2 mile toward the dealer, it stopped. I hopped on I 10 and (looking hard for some wood to knock on) the squeal never came back. Maybe the truck doesn't like San Antonio? In any case, I headed northwest on I 10, stopping in Fort Stockton, TX. You know, I 10 goes forever in Texas! I still have another couple of hundred to go tomorrow.

I stopped at the Fort Stockton RV Park, just off I 10, east of the town. No road noise - this section of I 10 isn't the busiest interstate in the country. I'm in site 25, an almost level pull through on gravel with full hookups plus cable for $36.00 with at Good Sam discount. Not bad for a commercial park - they even include a picnic table. The bathrooms, laundry & Roadrunner Cafe are one row away from my site. After setting up I headed for the showers. The report? 2 large showers with large showerheads individual doors & shower curtains, a fair sized drying area with 2 hooks, no bench or shelf, but many nooks in the shower stall to hold your soap & shampoo. Not much heat, but plenty of hot water.

Speaking of heat, I gained around 2500' of altitude, and the predicted nighttime temperature is 37°F (it hit 60°F during the afternoon). I guess those warm, coastal nights are a thing of the past. I'm already running the electric heater.

Since there is a Cafe, I decided to let them cook dinner (and maybe tomorrow's breakfast). I had a catfish basket. OK, but not as good as the catfish at the Waterfront Restaurant in Matagorda.

Until Tomorrow -

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Day 120, Sunday, December 2, 2018 - Top of the Hill RV Resort, Boerne, TX

Site 56
Sunday, December 2, 2018 - Top of the Hill RV Resort, Boerne, TX - 307.2 Miles, 6,988.7 Miles for the Trip

It started out as an uneventful trip, but as I drove through San Antonio on I 10, a high pitched squeal came from the radio, at least that is what I thought. Drove me crazy, and I sure was wishing is was some other day than Sunday as I drove by a Ford dealer. I stopped at a campground about 20 miles past the dealer, and tried everything I could to stop the noise. Loud enough that it hurts the ears, and does not shut off with the ignition. I pulled the fuses for the radio, entertainment center and audio amplifier, and it didn't stop. It sounds like it is coming from behind the display rather than the speakers. It also shuts off during the time I'm driving under a bridge. No idea what it is, but I'm going to need some ear plugs!

I'm in the Top of the Hill RV Resort a short way West of San Antonio, TX, site 56. A full hook up site on dirt, with a picnic table for $40.50 with a Good Sam discount. It is across from the bathrooms & laundry, so while I didn't have my usual basket full, I did a load of laundry. $1.00 wash & $1.50 dry, although I had to run the dryer twice to get everything dry.

Dinner was a first - Innovasian's Orange Chicken. One of the best frozen microwaved versions I've had. Little in the way of Chinese vegetables - lots of broccoli, but good sized pieces of chicken, and a nice sauce.

When I put the laundry basket back in the truck,  the squeal was gone! I sure hope it doesn't come back tomorrow...

Until Tomorrow -

Saturday, December 1, 2018

Day 119, Saturday, December 1, 2018 - Matagorda Bay Nature Park, TX, Day 7

The Group Photo
Saturday, December 1, 2018 - Matagorda Bay Nature Park, TX, Day 7 - 0 Miles, 6,681.5 Miles for the Trip

Probably the nicest day of the rally. 78°F with a light wind & plenty of sun. I made a couple rounds of the campground, inclding a photo of the campgrounds "New Lodgings", a couple of Airstreams. After that it was the group photo, a short drive along the Colorado River to photograph some birds, and that evening, the pot luck dinner.  Lots of photos, including links to full size jpgs of the group photos  at today's LakeshoreImages page or the Matagorda Madness page.

Dinner was the pot luck!

Until Tomorrow -