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Old 07-06-2015, 04:48 AM   #461
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I slept like crap last night.....the fireworks that seemed to go on forever kept ricocheting thru me.

Lily and I did get in an early bike ride around the fairground...I rode, she ran. Not many places we are able to do that, but she dearly loves to "go for a bike ride". She stretches those legs out, and just flies. We'll do the same here this morning.

The Tallgrass Prairie was not what I expected......reminding me that it is best not to have expectations.

It is an old estate, tho very, very grand.....huge stone home, barns, stone fences, etc. Lots of stone houses here, apparently lots of it in the ground, making it more suitable for cattle ranching than farming.

Some prairie at the Tallgrass Praire, tho no good place for a photo of my modern day covered wagon, as I had hoped. Maybe still.

This area I have been driving thru in Kansas is more rolling hills than I remember in this state......very pretty, lots of cattle, hay in huge bales in brilliant, yellow fields.... very picturesque, you can almost see these fields in a Van Gogh or Renoir ....and even spied a field of rather scrawny looking corn planted yesterday. Sorry....scrawny compared to Illinois and Iowa corn. Probably grown to eventually feed those cattle.....like that we saw here and there in Ireland.

Only drove as far as Hutchison yesterday, as a small issue with a contact lens and my right eye necessitated removing the lens and letting my eye rest.

At the fairgrounds here....electricity for AC, and nice showers. . Fairgrounds are always a rather barren place to spend a night, but inexpensive, and their bathhouses, almost universally, very clean and in good condition.

On to, and thru, Dodge City today.

Going to spend tonight at Alice's RV Park in Hooker, OK.....if you've never been, it is a treat....I'll try to get a picture.

Getting closer!


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Old 07-06-2015, 01:21 PM   #462
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Kansas today was more as I remember Kansas.....more flat, with lots and lots of wind.

Miles and miles and miles of windfarms as we approached Dodge City, and several areas of dust storms.

Passed 4 Airstreams heading east, I'm guessing on their way back home from Farmington. 3 trailers, red letters proudly showing, and one older Class B. I waved.

We have not been to Alice's RV Park in several years....it is no longer "Alice's", just "RV Park"..... and has truly gone to hell in a hand basket.

The owner was here mowing.....he is definitely not Alice....and helped me locate a site that had working 30 amp. Tried three before I found one with power. There was a fuse out of one box, broken outlets in the others.

Early in our Alice's RV Park experience, this was a beautiful little oasis in a small town with a great name....Hooker, Oklahoma.

6 pull thru, full hook-up sites, grass was watered and carefully manicured, everything worked and had a well cared for appearance that made it clear this little spot was valued by its owner....including beautiful flowers planted where the sign sits.

Not so any longer. It looks run down, worn out, and seriously neglected. .

However, PA is $10 a night for water, electric and sewer, we drove 5 hours getting here, are out in the middle of fricking nowhere.... and are staying til the am. One of those places where you close your blinds, and are glad that you are home.

There is now a Love's Truck Stop in Hooker, and I saw coming in lots of older mobile homes. This town may have become a refuge for persons displaced by the tornadoes of recent years, or for workers following jobs.

Everyone needs a place to live, but it is sad to see how this spot has deteriorated.

I'm having a glass of wine, and toasting what used to be.


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Old 07-06-2015, 05:11 PM   #463
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Looks like you are headed towards Raton NM. My wife's G Grandfather practised law there in the late 1800's. His father, J.B. Dawson had a huge ranch just south of there at Dawson NM, now a ghost town. Nothing left there now but a few buildings and a cemetery.
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Old 07-06-2015, 05:33 PM   #464
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I won't be as far north as Raton, but love old stories. Thanks for sharing.

Decided to indulge in a Netflix movie. Being a huge, huge fan of anything Tommy Lee Jones does, I found "The Homesman", with Hilary Swank....and a cameo appearance at the end by the one and only Meryl Streep.

I gave it 5 stars*****. Really excellent, and Tommy at his crusty, crumdgeonly best.

If I had a short list of movie stars I would like to meet....Tommy Lee Jones would be on it.

He just keeps getting better as he gets older.


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Old 07-07-2015, 12:57 PM   #465
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I talk with Doug all day when I am on the road ......look at that old courthouse, honey!.....I don't think we have been on this road before.....look at me, driving to New Mexico/filling the fuel tank/washing the little motor home!

I am sure he listens, when he is not busy with spirit things, and I feel very clearly that he still takes care of me.....that feeling of being "watched over" is always present. Such a good hubby he was.


Drove out of the desolation of what-used-to-be Alice's RV Park this morning, thru continuous haze....what is that, anyway....in the Oklahoma panhandle, that little corner of Texas, and on into New Mexico. It is not overcast, but haze..

Cattle ranches, feed lots, Mexican restaurants, and into New Mexico, which appears a bit desert-y at Ute Lake SP, where we have settled for two nights.

I scrubbed 1200 miles of road grime and adhered insects off the motor home on my way thru Logan.

Very nice state park, picnic tables with shelters at each site, and these pretty little wildflowers everywhere.

Nice bathhouses, too, and only $14 a night.

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Old 07-07-2015, 01:16 PM   #466
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Maggie sounds like you are doing great and with Doug's blessings.

There is controversy about the haze (their is actually a haze plan with regard to emissions) and many say it is coming from a Texas coal plant not far from there.

We did the same route a few years back coming from Omaha. We asked someone in Dalhart Texas if it was dust or cattle related and he told us about the coal.

Safe stay and continued travels.

Pretty flowers.
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Old 07-07-2015, 02:11 PM   #467
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Thank you.

The haze looks like smog, it is just in so unlikely a place.....no smokestacks or industry visible anywhere.

Must be rather distressing to those who live in this area, and what is it doing to their lungs.


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Old 07-07-2015, 04:23 PM   #468
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There are bushes of these here.....absolutely beautiful, and look almost like a miniature orchid.

Googling NM wildflowers, I found this picture, but can't find a name.

??


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Old 07-07-2015, 05:04 PM   #469
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Could it be smoke from California wildfires?
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Old 07-08-2015, 05:38 AM   #470
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It's not smoke, I am pretty certain.

No smell of smoke.....or anything else....just haze.

Very cool last night, lovely sleeping weather.


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Old 07-08-2015, 08:24 AM   #471
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I have counted 7 different wildflowers here.

Excellent Verizon signal outside, although poor to nothing inside.

Maybe I should get one of those boosters....but I don't want something else that needs to be plugged in.

Two full rows of W/E campsites in this campground that are first come, first served, gravel pads and each site has a nice, cement pad shelter on it. Tents to big Class A's, it's all here, also a nice mix of ethnicity which you don't always see.

Very few dogs, tho.

Watching on the news this morning the heavy rains and flooding in parts of New Mexico, also crazy driving issues because folks aren't used to driving in the rain.

An enigma here, just another day of rain back home.


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Old 07-08-2015, 08:35 AM   #472
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Lily watching me carefully.....


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Old 07-08-2015, 08:48 AM   #473
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We have seen the haze way over here in NC, for a day or two. The TV weather guy says it is smoke from the west's wild fires that has gotten into the jet stream. No smell of smoke either, its too far up.

Happy travels!
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Old 07-08-2015, 09:33 AM   #474
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Thank you, Alan.

It may just be smoke, which would be good, in that smoke is temporary.



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Old 07-08-2015, 12:45 PM   #475
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Maggie, we've had the haze here in the Denver region for 3 days now. Meteorologist on local TV says it's from wildfires in Washington state and California high up in the jet stream. No smoke smell, but, warnings to those of us with asthma, etc. to stay indoors as much as possible. We've had some rain, but, the haze continues to move in. I think you may be getting some as well.
I am enjoying reading of your journey. I know you must be comforted that Doug, in spirit is right there with you. You had mentioned before, that you were soulmates....such a wonderful relationship. I did not have that with Joe...we always seemed to be going in different directions, due to his career and mine.
I did, however have that special relationship with my daughter, Lynn, and felt her spirit for quite some time. She seemed to make her spirit presence known to me...for as long as I needed her, then became quieter with the passing years. Her daughter, Melissa and Lynn's sister, Debbie reported her presence as well. I feel that a strong loving bond is not easily broken, even in death. I often wonder what truly awaits afterward. I suppose we'll each find that answer eventually. Until then.....I keep the faith, try to live the way He wants us to...and hope it's enough?
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Old 07-08-2015, 01:19 PM   #476
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I agree. Powerful bonds transcend death.

We have to have some willingness to believe in it in order to experience it, tho, I really believe.

I don't know that if Doug had died suddenly 10 years ago, I would have felt the same way then as I do now.

I'm glad to have had it....and to, still.


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Old 07-08-2015, 06:25 PM   #477
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lily&Me View Post
Texas in July. You are brave.



I'll post this pic for you.....Hans, Jr., and his Jenny.



Maggie

Maggie, Thank you for sharing the photo. Once again, Lili has demonstrated a fine sensitivity with the camera and has captured her subjects' theatrical propensity beautifully. Jim


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Old 07-09-2015, 02:54 PM   #478
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Got a good soak yesterday from those storm systems moving thru, which allowed for an especially beautiful drive into Albuquerque today.....that gorgeous red dirt, green growing things in various shades, beautiful wild bushes of some sort with deep, rosy-red blossoms....plus water standing in the creeks and low lying areas.

Lovely.

Albuquerque is a big city, with big city traffic, that I never used to drive in. Look at me honey, driving in all this traffic, and not a scratch..

Had a bit of choring to do here, including tires checked at s friendly Firestone shop....then indulged in a double bacon torpedo at The Yeller Sub....yum!

We are settled into a PA campground here for the night....on to Soccorro tomorrow.


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Old 07-10-2015, 02:56 PM   #479
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It has been one of those days from hell, where everything that could seem to go wrong did.

It started with my first serious dump station mishap.....discharge hose wasn't apparently attached properly, and sewage discharged and splashed .....all....over...everywhere..... By that I mean not only the ground, the hose. the mat I was kneeling on, the underside of the rig, etc.,.....but also me, my clean clothes, my shoes....everything.

Of course I cleaned it up.....also myself, full change of clothing and shoes. Good thing I'm doing laundry in the am.

Various small mishaps later, I'm feeling near tears and having troubling backing up to a diesel pump that was selling for $2.49.9!! The nice man behind me at the other pump stopped what he was doing and backed me in, then took the hose and was going to handle the fill for me. How sweet, such chivalry.

I doubt that he understood anything I said, but I told him I was a big girl just having a bad day, and could handle this, but very much appreciated his assistance. He smiled and nodded.....I'm sure he got the gist.

When Doug or I had a really bad day, or series of days, or a bad week, etc., we would tell each other "It's a test, to see how much we can take". It would strengthen us, get our chins up and foster determination that we could handle anything life dished out.. And, we did. Ohhh, the stories I could tell...

The difference now is I don't have him to lean on, hold me, pat my back....all that. I miss that, and him. I still use the same words, speak them aloud to myself as if he instead were still here saying them to me.

What else are ya gonna do.....ya just get thru it.

Did get my propane tank topped off, and that was thankfully uneventful.

Settled into Casey's Socorro RV Park for the next two nights.....a neat, tidy little place and full service beauty salon. Seriously.... the same counter taking payments for cuts, blow outs, etc., registers you for your site.

Very sweet lady about my age behind the counter, smelling softly of patchouli.

A nice, friendly smile.....I think my bad day is over.

Going to have a glass of wine here in a bit.....if I had a cold beer, I would drink that, as it has felt like a cold beer day.


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Old 07-10-2015, 07:54 PM   #480
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Bad day?

Maggie, your story reminded me of an incident with a friend 40 years ago....while away at the beach a water pipe broke, upon his return, 5 inches of water throughout the house. His response, "Coulda' been worse, it couda' been sh.." Only in your case this just would not have fit.

We all do those little things, and once started sometimes the day just continues with the "Coulda' been sh.." stuff.

Hope tomorrow is better....
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