As I’ve mentioned before, I love love love the southwest. I hadn’t been there in so long that I’d forgotten how delicious the air feels to breathe, and how big the sky seems. And a nice side benefit is that it completely takes all the frizz out of my hair!
I fantasize about wintering in Arizona, but I don’t think I’d want to be there in the summer. The temperature was nearing 100 degrees in late October, and I came home one day to this:
The outdoor thermometer must have been directly in the sun, because it wasn’t really 115 outside – more like 98. But I’m sure the inside temperature was correct. The air conditioner worked really hard to get that number down! The desert is always much cooler at night, so there was some relief.
I only had a few days in Arizona, and I spent one of them with a genealogy friend, visiting the historic town of Wickenburg. Then I caught up on personal business, and prepared for my trip to Mexico. I put the RV into storage near the airport for a week (I would highly recommend Guardian Self Storage on Van Buren), and stayed at a park-n-fly hotel the night before the flight.
You may think that someone who’s retired doesn’t really need a vacation, but that’s not true. Even though I’m technically not working, it’s still a great relief to take a break from the “real world”. After seven months in the RV, it was truly terrific to just spend a week doing nothing but laying around the pool reading novels. My good friend Sandra and her 28-year-old daughter joined me there.
Keep in mind that I’m still, and always will be, a Frugal Traveling Pensioner. The timeshare week in Mexico was a gift from my ex-husband, back when I was taking care of my dying brother in 2013. And the flight to Mexico was paid with frequent flyer miles. So, my expenses were limited to food, drinks and incidentals in Mexico, storage for the RV, and a night in a hotel before and after the trip, all of which totaled less than $500.
Sandra flew back to Phoenix with me, and we made the two-day drive to Fresno together. I’d never had anyone ride shotgun in the RV before – what a difference that makes! I mapped out a route which avoided any big hills, so we crossed the Sierras at the very south end, over the Tehachapi Pass.
During the second day of the drive, we noticed that there was a gap between the bumper and the hood of the Mini Cooper. The hood of the car was also slightly uneven. I had no idea how or when the damage had happened.
After more thought, my theory now is that it happened while driving along a road in California that had some unusually severe undulations (when I was off the interstate trying to avoid the mountains!). When the hitch was originally installed last year at the Camping World in Lakewood, New Jersey, Eric was concerned that the height distance between the RV and car was too great. At the time, the mechanic said it was on the outside of the range (we had read that there should be only a three inch height difference), but that it would be fine. Well, it wasn’t fine. At least, that’s my theory.
I stopped at the Camping World here in Fresno last week, and they seemed to agree. I have a longer appointment scheduled in December to see what they can do.
As Eric and I often say to each other – IT’S ALWAYS SOMETHING!! But that’s true of life in general, right? In my retirement, in my quest to avoid stress and conflict, I prefer to take these blips in stride, deal with them, and move on!