27 June 2010

Postcard from Nebraska

26-27 June 2010
(North Platte, NE)

This 1-niter was at Holiday RV Park. It's an older park that is filled every night. We arrived early and got settled before the rush. Gets pretty crazy when there are several rigs trying to get connected for the night.

The South Platte River runs thru the town of North Platte (huh?), so there were a lot of mosquitoes (remember that to our minds, even one mosquito is a lot!). But we dealt with it which means we whined as much as the mosquitoes did.

We ate at Penny's Diner very near the park thinking "How bad can they screw up a hamburger?" Sadly I can answer that question: what I had was probably a hockey puck in a former life. I'm sure because it was about the right size and it was hard as a rock. It had signs of having been on the grill which was probably done to hide the NHL logo in the steel center. Celia had a milk shake which turned out to be very good, but yours truly can't have dairy. That hockey-puck burger gave me something extra to whine about besides mosquitoes! Our advice... don't have anything at Penny's besides the milkshake.

N Platte is a fair sized farming community and we were able to do some restocking plus make a run to Walgreens. We were off to Kennebec, SD the next morning.

26 June 2010

Postcard from Kansas

24-26 June 2010
(Goodland, KS)
All the ladies out for a walk
KOA in Goodland, KS. Very well cared for.
It was an easy drive from La Junta, CO to Goodland in Kansas and took us on a tour of the area's farmland. The KOA in Goodland turned out to be a small but nice campground. The owner's wife did some cooking for guests and you could order what she had on the limited menu for that nite and it would be delivered to your site at a time of your choosing. Plus she was up early to cook breakfast as well. I thought "Yeah, sure" till I saw that she offered biscuits & gravy. Yikes! I might have to live here!

Old country recipe for stuffed cabbage... to die for!
Our one-niter turned into 2 nites. Then during the 2nd nite Celia came down with a bug. I asked for a 3rd night but unfortunately it was a Saturday and this KOA was booked. By 9:00 AM the Admiral was feeling better, so she thought it would be OK to push on. We made a couple stops along side the road (nice to have your outhouse with you!), but mostly she did fine. Pretty soon we were in North Platte, NE.

24 June 2010

Postcard from Colorado

23-24 June 2010
(La Junta, CO)

On 23 June we disconnected at Santa Fe Skies RV Park and launched for Colorado & eventually Canada. I'd planned to stop for the night in Trinidad, CO, but when we got there it didn't look promising. The addresses I'd written down seemed to be motels that might allow RVs in their parking lot for $$$. Not what we were looking for so we moved on to the KOA in La Junta, CO. It turned out to be a great drive taking us via state highways thru the Colorado Grassland Reserve.

La Junta is 100% farming town. They were irrigating throughout the area and the irrigation ditch running past the park, about 50 feet from our site, was full to the top and moving slowly. Of course that meant mosquitoes. Oh joy. We had thought we'd at least be OK thru Colorado but that wasn't going to happen.

Diesel wasn't easy to find but when I did I was a happy camper: the price was about 25 cents/gal cheaper than New Mexico. We also spotted a WalMart but didn't need a stop there. So this is a decent stop.

La Junta was a one-niter and we were away the next morning for Goodland, KS.

23 June 2010

Postcard from New Mexico- 2

3 April to 22 June 2010
(Santa Fe, NM)

Had to have a fire before we left town I guess
We had a lot of chores to take care of while we were in Santa Fe. Taxes, of course, plus doctor/dentist appointments; exams for the dogs; health certificates for the dogs; and there was the issue of what was to be our residency.

Lots of wonderful sunsets in Santa Fe
We settled on South Dakota as it's an RV friendly state and most importantly it has a considerate attitude toward RVers when it comes to jury duty. Though I've served only once, I'd been called too many times in Santa Fe county and had concluded the only way to make it stop was to die or move. I chose the latter.

As I perceive it, the jury pool isn't populated with every person that probably meets the requirements to serve (registered voters, licensed drivers and property owners). Rather it consists of only those same people that have been previously called & vetted. They keep calling the same people over and over and only replenish the pool when someone becomes ineligible. The pool is large so it's not like you get called every week. But if you've made plans for a vacation, you must be excused from jury duty by a judge... the jury pool manager can't do it. If we're to travel, probably full time, I see no other alternative than to change our residency.

We signed up with Alternative Resources and then used their services for registering the RV and the truck. I left the Highlander registered in NM since we leave it in the carport except when we come back to check on the house. The process was very smooth and fast. The only inconvenient part is getting our driver's licenses since that has to be done in person. Voting is done by absentee ballot and as an RVer you are restricted to non-local candidates. This latter limitation seems appropriate as there's no way, for instance, we can make a reasonable judgment about school board elections.

We also got our passports renewed which turned out to be not so time consuming as I'd feared. We did pay the expedited service fee and had the replacements in hand in about a month. But it was really important to not leave it to the last minute. Since New Mexico driver's licenses aren't accepted as proof of citizenship anywhere, it was important that we have them to get our South Dakota driver's license and to cross the border to Canada.

Eventually we made our way thru the list(s!) and were finally ready to leave for Canada. We'd decided to follow the western shore of L Superior, enter Canada at Thunder Bay, Ontario, then go around the North shore of Superior and down to Sault Ste. Marie (soo saint marie). There are provincial parks along the route so it sounded very inviting.

After the North shore our plan was to continue East thru Canada till we got to the Maritime provinces, then turn South thru Maine to see the grand kids. After that we would work our way South to Florida for the winter season.

We thought it sounded like a great plan.