Campsite at Elephant Butte Lake, So. NM
Leaving NM on 5/15/2017
A rumble began and the rainstorm came in cooling the land as Alice and I settled in for our first nite on the road. On the way to the trash, I dropped the keys accidently into a street grate. Since every door was locked on the van, hence no cell phone, I walked to the camper parked next to mine as Danny, a race car/motorcycle driver, drove his ‘tricked-out’ cycle into a candy-apple red trailer with a skull and crossbones image and FASTER ‘N HELL RACIN’ BIKES written on its side.
“Take the phone and get AAA out here, little lady. They’ll help you out.”
As I waited for AAA, I listened to racing stories from this muscle shirt clad tatted-out mechanic whose red bulbous nose rivaled any in existence, as Betti, (that’s Betti with a ♥︎ over the “i”) did an amazing job of balancing on high-wedged sandals, walked in and out of their camper. The final door slam happened as we heard, “I am ready to roll, Danny.” They rolled, I waited, AAA came, I got the spare keys and left in the morning.
♪ A long and winding road that leads to your door, will never disappear ….♪ looped through my mind as I motored on and on and on……..thoughts of “who in God’s name would voluntarily move out here and STAY.” The Mojave Desert as described in a brochure read, “Singing sand dunes, carpets of wildflowers…” well…I missed that entire photograph.
Brief thoughts of staying at a Mojave campground in the higher elevation zipped in my mind but it was so friggin’ hot that Alice, myself and Mabel pulled into an RV RESORT which had blue-tinted water in a pond with ducks, a 10′ kidney shaped pool, a phone booth that had seen better days 20 years ago, campsites with
salt-cedar trees providing shade over the sand and astro turf, which probably came from the first baseball field Joe DiMaggio ever played on. With the van plugged into electricity, the A/C turned on, shades pulled, I waited until late evening before taking Alice on a walk.
The next day, after another 180 miles or so of driving 65 mph, which is usually my minimum and now my max speed(!) which leads to supreme test of patience, Mabel got 13 MPG. This was my first lesson in the RV life— saving gas is paramount if you have the time, otherwise it can be a very expensive trip.
With Phoenix in the rear view mirror, we continued on to my sister’s house near Prescott where Alice found a new friend!
Past Flagstaff, AZ onto Barstow, CA with the heat outside climbing, turned north towards Bishop, CA, the road narrowed to a two-lane and eventually, I saw the Sierras:
Bishop, California didn’t arrive too soon with a population of 4,000 +/-, snow on the mountains, low 90s, which was sweater weather at that point, I stopped for a few days and visited relatives. Alice played in the creek behind their house and cooled off.
Take good care,
Lisa, Alice and Mabel