Archive for the ‘New Mexico’ Category

All Wal Marts are not created equal!!

Monday, April 2nd, 2007

As we left the D/FW area we were low on fresh veggies and meat and planned on stopping at a Wal-Mart along the road.  In Texas you can find a Wal-Mart everywhere.  They all look the same except in certain cities like Addison that make them build it to code of their city.  In Addison Wal-Mart is a red brick building.  We saw several Wal-Marts along the way but we were in a hurry and didn’t stop.  Then we got to New Mexico and Arizona and couldn’t find one along the highway.  In AZ there is no big sign letting you know you are near a Wal-Mart.  They all look like all the other buildings and just a sign on the building itself.  We finally did find one in Phoenix and loaded up on groceries.

We went to Wal-Mart in El Centro to look at digital cameras as our battery cover latch is broken and we have to tape it shut.  They had a limited selection as they were expecting new cameras in April. We didn’t buy one.  The Wal-Mart looked like any Wal-Mart in TX.

A few days later we were in El Cajon and stopped by Best Buy to see what kind of cameras they had and their prices.  As we drove into the parking lot of Best Buy, we saw a sign and an arrow pointing to Wal-Mart.  Did not see it any where.  As we left Best Buy we asked where Wal-Mart was located.  Best Buy was next door to a shopping mall with Macy’s as one of its anchor store.  The salesman told us to drive around the mall and it was on the other side.  It was not in a parking lot by itself but IN THE MALL ITSELF.  Not only was it in the mall but it was 2 stories tall.  It was one of the anchor stores.  How COOL is that?  So we went in to see what their selections of cameras were. 


Rick always gets a cart and uses it to walk with around a store.  So he grabs a cart and we look to see where their cameras were.  They were up the escalator on the 2nd floor.  How do we get the cart up the escalator?  Well, between the up and down people escalator, there is a shoppinig cart escalator.


Notice the garden center is upstairs.  You can park your car in a covered 3 story garage.


A Catch up on the past week.

Monday, March 19th, 2007

Monday, March 19, 2007 – El Cajon, CA
Today we made a nice hilly trip into El Cajon, CA to visit all RVer’s favorite store, Wal-Mart.  We also were looking for a good place to get the thermostat and coolant changed.  We found a Pep Boys that could do the job, just not today.  We had a nice lunch at an Italian restaurant, picked up some groceries and headed back into the hills. 
We use the Escapee’s mail forwarding service in Livingston, TX.  They have been very efficient.  Our first attempt to have our mail forwarded to a post office general delivery address was successful.


Friday – Sunday, March 16-18, 2007 –Southern California
We’ve had a really relaxing weekend.  We were able to get in a little hiking, swimming and sitting around.  We’re experiencing record high heat in the upper 90’s.  I must say that I don’t mind the heat.


Thursday, March 15, 2007 – Phoenix to Southern California

We left Phoenix at about 9:00 AM on Thursday and headed toward Southern California.  Our only incident was a session of overheating on a ten-mile incline from 50 feet below sea level to 3200 feet.  This was a surprise because the truck had no trouble pulling the load up the hill.  I intend to have the coolant and the thermostat changed next week.

We ended up at a recreational area in the mountains east of El Centro and west of San Diego where we intend to stay for about a month to relax and work on getting in shape.  The internet access is somewhat spotty here too.  We’ll work on getting a better connection.   But we’re not going to do much of anything for a few days.


Tuesday & Wednesday, March 13-14, 2007 – Tucson, AZ to Phoenix, AZ

Since we decided against Life-On-Wheels, we freed up a couple of days for relaxation.  We headed to just north of Phoenix to visit some online friends Carl and Peggy, who are also full timing. Their decision was helped along with the arrival of hurricane Katrina to their home in New Orleans.  We had a chance to relax and even get in a little swimming.

We had no internet or cell phone service here.


Monday, March 12, 2007 – Tucson, AZ

We went to Camping World and Beaudry’s parts place in search of a new little door to cover our sewer hose storage compartment.  The original must have opened and blown off early on our first day of travel.  None in stock.  We’ll try to get one at the Montana Rally in mid April near Santa Barbara.

We finally heard from the Life-On-Wheels people at 11:00 AM.  They said that we could get into the three-day Rally (Seminars) if we could get there by noon.  That wasn’t going to happen.  We’ll have to pick up another one later.

Monday night, we met with friends Roland and Karen and some other friends, Mike and Marilyn, for dinner at a north Tucson resort.  It was fun and we got back to Beaudry’s by about midnight. 

Sunday, March 11, 2007 – El Paso, TX to Tucson, AZ

On Sunday morning, we headed off to take a look at the house, in El Paso, that Tinka was living in when we met back in 1985.  This is where I convinced her to marry me.  The house looked good.  The town had grown tremendously.  What used to be desert a few blocks from her house is now miles and miles of houses.

We hooked up and at 11:00 we pushed on through New Mexico toward Tucson.  In New Mexico, we passed a fantastic rock formation in what is known as Texas Canyon.  Next time through here, we’ll take some time to explore the area.  Our current schedule didn’t allow the time.

We pulled into Beaudry’s RV Resort around 3:00 PM, totally confused by the time zone changes combined with daylight savings time.  It turns out that Arizona doesn’t observe daylight savings time.  Beaudry’s is a fantastic place.  They even have “hot tub” spaces.  All of the sites were quite large, with concrete patios and patio furniture.  This facility is huge.  They have an RV service area with 50 bays with lifts for the largest RV’s.  There is also a Camping World onsite.  By the way, their restaurants are closed from 2:00 PM Sunday until Monday at 11:00AM

We fired up our new ice maker and the thing started spitting out cubes in about six minutes.  Our friends, Roland and Karen stopped by shortly after we were set up.  We had a couple of drinks and went to dinner at Famous Sam’s. 


Saturday, March 10, 2007 – Pecos, TX to El Paso, TX

In the morning, we headed back to Barstow, TX to take a look at the town in daylight.  Unfortunately, the years have not been good to the, once prosperous, farming community.  When New Mexico dammed the Pecos River, irrigation became impractical.  The cottonwood trees, that were once plentiful, have all died and blown over, along with nearly every other tree in the county.  The 30’ X 24’ old farm house, where Tinka grew up, had been burned down several years ago.  All that is left is the foundation and the garage that Tinka used as a playhouse.


It seems that a good paint salesman could have made a fortune in Barstow.  Nothing has seen a new coat of paint since being built. Below is Tinka’s grandmother’s general store.


At noon we headed off to El Paso.  Along the way, we reached a maximum altitude of 4683 feet, near Van Horn. We pulled in to the Mission RV Park in the late afternoon.  There had been reports that the pull-through spaces at Mission were too narrow for big rigs.  Ours is as wide as any and we had no trouble.  True, putting out the awning might have been too much.

We met with Tinka’s childhood friend Sherrie and, with her, visited her son’s art gallery.  He was preparing for a showing so we didn’t get into his hair for very long.  After the art gallery, we went to one of Rick’s favorite restaurants, Billy Crews.  This is a fantastic steak house on the edge of El Paso, just over the New Mexico border.  After dinner, we visited with Sherrie at her home for a while then headed back to Mission RV for the night.


Friday, March 9, 2007 – Weatherford, TX to Pecos, TX

We left Weatherford at about 9:15 AM and headed to meet Tinka’s Aunts, Faye and Corky, and her uncle, Laddie for a late lunch in Midland. We had a nice visit and left Midland for Pecos, TX at about 4:00 PM. We arrived in Pecos at around 6:00 PM and made camp at the Escapees RV Park there.  The park itself was clean, flat, and not overburdened with frills.

At 7:00 we headed back up the road six miles to the town of Barstow, TX where Tinka was born and grew up.  We visited with some of Tinka’s family friends, Theresa and Bobbie, in Barstow and headed back to Pecos for the night.  It was kind of ironic to start our new life where Tinka was born.  Below is Judge Roy Bean’s place.


Well we’re finally on the way.  This is an effort to catch up from for the first week of travel. Internet connections were not always very reliable and truthfully, we’ve been exhausted.


Tinka returned from Canada after relocating her mother near her sister, who lives in Kelowna, BC.  Our plan was to leave town on March 8th, but we had a few things left to tend to and couldn’t get it all done on time.

We departed westward on March 9, 2007, a day later than planned.  Our goal was to get to Tucson by Sunday, the 12th so that we could attend the “Life-On-Wheels” Rally.  We were on the standby list because of our fluctuating schedule didn’t allow us to get reservations in on time.