The end of 2015

This is our last night staying at Williams Hill Campground. It’s free to camp here, and the view is beautiful. We are up in the hills, overlooking forest and farmland. We’ve been here 4 nights, and it’s been chillier– like in the 40’s during the day and 20’s at night. Before that, we were staying again on the Rincon Parkway in Ventura for Christmas. It was nice to be back on the ocean. I bought a skim board and I’m looking forward to getting better with it.

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Williams Hill BLM

We stayed in Acton for a while before that. The campground is in a valley of hills. Acton is a small town town of Los Angeles, where lots of movies and TV shows are filmed.

Before Christmas, we were in Carpinteria. We visited Drew and Joey’s aunts. I’m growing close with them as well. It’s nice. My social anxiety is getting a lot better the longer we’ve been away from Syracuse.

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The beach in Carpinteria

I do miss home sometimes. Well, Syracuse isn’t exactly home now. The motorhome does feel like my home for the most part. More than anywhere else. But the location of Syracuse does hold my past. It’s kind of like missing an ex you know wasn’t good for you.

We’re talking eventually about buying land somewhere, so we do have a permanent base somewhere. We’ll be exploring that this spring and summer when we travel to northern California, Oregon, and Washington. I’m really looking forward to when the weather is warmer so we can go further north.

For now, we need to stay between San Francisco and Los Angeles, for author events I am doing in January and March.

Oh, and the cats are well.

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Mittens and Snowflake in the RV.

Tomorrow is New Year’s. We don’t have any plans, besides refilling our water bottles and my cards.

California (Morgan Hill, Ventura) and Arizona (Quartzsite, Mesa)

When last I wrote an entry, we were just getting to California. That was almost 2 months ago. Most of October we spent back and forth between two RV resorts in southern Silicon Valley. We traveled to the San Francisco Bay area and some other places nearby, like Santa Cruz. Joey had his surgery in San Francisco on the 20th, and we stayed over a few nights in a hotel.

After Joey had healed some from surgery, we stayed further south in Ventura, on the Rincon Beach parkway. This was a bunch of RVs parked on the side of Ventura Highway, with beach and ocean on the other side. This was incredible, to wake up and fall asleep at the ocean for a couple nights. We also visited some of Drew and Joey’s family.

In November, we headed back to Arizona, staying first briefly in Parker, where I swam in the Colorado river. Then we met Joey’s dad at a primitive camp called Burro Creek, which was located near Nothing, Arizona. That’s the actual name. We saw burros and found a small hot spring, in which I built a natural jacuzzi. That was a lot of fun.

After that, Quartzsite. It was way too early in the season. It seemed like the worst place for us. No food we could eat, nothing to really do, nobody around, no water, no wifi, often no data…just lots of rocks, and rock stores. Yes, stores where you can buy rocks, and that was about it. I wouldn’t call them stores either…More like elaborate yard sales. We plan to go back when more people arrive, because apparently it’s a big RV thing in the winter. Thousands and thousands of people migrate there. But it was a very crappy, tiny desert town otherwise. No offense, Quartzsite. We had some fun pretending it was Nightvale and being amused by the local papers, but that was where the fun ended. Then we found out that people camping near us had their generator stolen in the night, and that this was a reoccurring problem. This was right after a gas station clerk actually broke down crying to me the previous evening, saying “I don’t know why I moved to the desert…I hate it here…” Yeah, we didn’t leave Syracuse for this shit. We packed up that morning.

Next was Mesa, Arizona where we have been staying since in various sections of Tonto National Forest. We have stores with food we can eat, and we have been able to stay for mostly free on public land. First we went to Phon D Sutton recreation area, where I went tubing and swimming and exploring in the Salt River. Swimming in November! We saw wild horses and bald eagles. I guess technically they aren’t “real” wild horses, but they were horses who were living without humans in the wilderness, so that sounds like wild horses in my book.

We also stayed at Lost Dutchmen state park, right near the Superstition Mountains. Joey climbed them. I saw a coyote here, and certainly heard lots of them, everywhere. We were careful with the cats and continue to be.

Now we are staying on the Verde River. It’s greener (duh) and fast moving. I achieved a lifelong goal of swinging on a rope swing into the water! I also went tubing and nearly died. I lost my tube and had to use all my might to keep from getting pulled under a fallen tree in the rapids, and then to get from that tree to the shore. We are thinking kayaks and lifejackets for the future. Still, I will miss you, tube. Good times.

Joey is working on his prosthetic business, and I’ve been writing a lot. Drew is really interested in primitive skills and spends hours lately smashing rocks against other rocks. I take the cats on cat walks. We’ve met some people, and I’ve been really shy, but I’m getting better at it. Sometimes figuring out where we’ve going next and survival can be stressful, but I still rate RV life an A+ so far.

 

1000 Islands and a Walmart Parking Lot: Northern NY Journey

So we are officially living full-time in the RV now. We stayed up at a state park in the 1000 Islands. Highlights include

  • No wi-fi for several days
  • My phone is dead, forever
  • First time I saw a praying mantis
  • First time in a 30-foot canoe

Now we are in a Walmart parking lot in Northern New York State. It’s been a bit of a rough start, but everyone’s doing pretty good, including the cats. Lack of cell phone means lack of easily accessible camera, and thus, I don’t have any pictures just yet. Brain is also tired, so I am short on amusing anecdotes at the moment. Stay tuned.

Oh, and apparently I can write three books before age 27 but I can’t put away macaroni and cheese leftovers in a bag. Somehow the bag ended up inside out and there is cheese everywhere. I…don’t know what happened… But the others had a good laugh.