We left Oasis Palms RV resort in Thermal and headed towards Borrego Springs.  We camped in a free site, but this time it wasn’t on BLM land.  It is land owned by the Avery family (Avery labels and office supplies).  They have lots of land out this way, but they have left some of it for the public.  There are signs where it is private, but the rest is open.  The property was very clean.  People are respectful and do not leave trash around.  There are some good hiking trails in the hills (but too precarious to carry a camera up there).

We met up with Yves and Boogaloo again.  Sadly, the Land Rover is out of commission.  Yves accidentally towed it in first gear, so the engine is dead.  He has put out an SOS, and hopefully someone in California will have a spare engine for him.

View from our window and door:

We went in to Borrego Springs to get wifi.  What a sweet town!  The public library has outside benches, free wifi, and charging stations.  There is a nearby post office where people have packages sent “general delivery.”

This is the little mall around the library: (I love the MCM light fixtures)

When we got to town, we saw a Chinook parked, so we parked beside it.  We had a clear view while we were at the library, so when the people returned, we went to talk to them. They asked if we were heading to the Chinook rally in Yuma.  What rally?  That got our wheels literally in motion.


That evening, Yves wanted to have a potluck, so he invited some nearby campers, and we had a delicious Mexican meal, complete with French beignets.

Daisy loved it there, and she had many walkabouts:

Yves got busy and gave Boogaloo a shave.  Yves said, “I don’t do fantasy.”  Boogaloo just got a basic shave down.  He must have felt so much cooler.

We were hoping to stay another day, but we got talking and thought we should head back to Yuma to find the Chinookers.

Yuma truly is the centre of the universe!  We keep finding our way back!  We found the Chinook rally, and they welcomed us.  It turned out that another couple paid their fees but couldn’t make it and couldn’t get a refund.  We got their spot.  It was very exciting for us because the only Chinook we had ever seen was ours (and the one in Borrego Springs).

Find our Chinook:

IMG_7297(far right, near the little brick structure)

The oldest is the crowd was a 1999, so they all were pretty hard to tell apart.  We had an ID tag made for Poppy with our Chinook on it.  If she got lost, we had hoped someone would locate the RV from the picture.  Ha!  Not in this crowd!

dog tag

Bob and Debbie also have a Destiny.  It’s a 2001, and they’ve owned it since it was 2 years old.  They were a fun couple.  Bob collected all the brochures he could get his hands on while Chinook was still in business.  We got to pore over them one afternoon.  Delightful!

Karen and Kenny also arrived late like us, and they were not members either.  Karen is my trailer soul mate!  You should see the trailers that have followed her home!  She has renovated some serious machines.  She has even sold trailers that found their ways to RV parks to be used as rentals.  One trailer, a rare Aeroflyte, was listed on eBay, and a museum was bidding against a personal collector.  Check out this 1959 Spartan that she sold to Enchanted Trails.  Three of her former trailers are at this park.  We hope to stay in touch to see what projects they are working on.  Kenny built a “tiny house” 25 years ago, long before anyone had heard of them.  He built it to take to swap meets so that he had shelter and a washroom.

Tomorrow (Sunday February 11, 2018), we are heading into Mexico.  Our first stop will be Puerto Peñasco.  Six friends are flying in from Saskatoon and Calgary.  Ted and Dona are picking them up at the airport.  Then we are all driving over together.

Here is a local treat that we indulged in on the way.  They are sold everywhere in southern Arizona and California.  Try one when you are this way!






Quartzsite: An Alternate Universe

Where else will you see tons of rocks for sale, quads driving down the road, bejewelled and bedazzled t-shirts, dogs in strollers, a yacht club, and a naked bookseller?  Quartzsite offers it all, although you may feel like you left Earth.  We really enjoyed our time in Quartzsite, both on the BLM land surrounding the town, and at the Airstream rally in town.

Quartzsite comes alive for a few short weeks in January.  The rock, mineral, gem, crystal, and fossil show may run longer. Many jewellery makers and rock collectors come for this.  I’ve never seen anything like this.  I’m glad I no longer have a house or else quite a few coffee table pieces may have made it home.  Lack of space saved us lots of money!

Rocks for all your needs!  To understand the scale of the amethyst in the first picture, look at the orange positioned at the top of it.  It was housed in its own steel crate, ready to be shipped to a sultan’s palace.

The RV show lasts only about 1 week and overlaps with the rock & gem show.  I was excited to go to The Big Tent to see the latest and greatest in RV supplies and gadgets.  Instead, we saw more veggie dicers and slicers than anyone needs.  The best part of the show was all the little pups being pushed around in strollers or pulled behind in wagons.  None of them were invalids like Daisy, though.  It’s a good way to protect them from getting trampled, but what a hassle pushing these strollers over stones!

Yacht Club

Yes, there is a yacht club on the desert, and they sell memberships!  Legend has it that people in the past used their Quartzsite Yacht Club membership to get into swanky yacht clubs.  Long time, no sea!

Paul Winer (aka Sweet Pie)

One of my bucket list items got checked off when we entered Reader’s Oasis Books and met its proprietor: the famous Sweet Pie.  Sweet Pie has quite a colorful history.  He used to be (well, he still is) an adult entertainer and traveled the world playing boogie woogie piano — naked, or almost!  He’s been charged many times for indecent exposure, but he won every case, because he technically wasn’t naked. He wears a pouch, of sorts. What a character!  I know he poses with his patrons for pictures, but I was too shy.  Instead we just got reading material.  His store is very well organized, and he can help you find anything.  He’s so professional even though he is only wearing a pouch!

Also, you can even buy your own pouch so that you can look like a bookseller too!  Thank you, Sweet Pie, you made my day.

Airstream Rally

We attended the Airstream rally with the el Camino unit. We met so many fun people and got tours of their rigs and advice on trailer size for our future trailer. We met a full-timing couple in a 2006 34-foot Airstream.  That’s 11 feet longer than ours!  It was so beautiful.  They renovated it and redecorated it to make it suitable for full-timing.  It was so fresh and homey in there.  I could have moved in!  Unfortunately, I didn’t have my camera with me when I took a tour.  To see their before & after pictures, please visit their blog: Bush’s RV Travel Journal

We also met a couple who travels about 6 months of the year, mostly off-grid in a 1956 16-foot Bubble.  I think they’ve owned their Bubble for about 17 years. Before that, they were tent campers.  One rainy camping trip in Canada sent them on a quest for a trailer.  It’s a story many of us can relate to.  Yes, the truck is a 1956, too.  The Bubble’s interior?  You guessed it!  All in 1956 reproduction fabrics and colors.  SWEET!  And, they use this trailer.

Daisy and Poppy enjoyed all the people and canines they met.  On our way back to Yuma, Poppy settled down in the motorhome.  Could it be she is getting used to it, or was she just exhausted?

We are back in Yuma for a few days to shower, do laundry, and recharge our batteries (literally and figuratively).  It turns out that we do not have enough solar panels to keep our batteries up.

Next stop?  Slab City!