A Rainy Chore Day

Friday, February 22, 2008 -- Quartzsite, AZ.
Camping FREE in the Scaddan Wash short term area.

It was still dark when I awoke to the sound of rain falling on the roof. That soothing sound coupled with the early morning chill inside the camper is a sure-fire combination that'll keep me in bed until Dar has the furnace running and the coffee made. We have nothing scheduled today, other than preparing to hit the road tomorrow, Saturday, morning.

In Pomona, CA., at the Family Motor Coach Association Rally, we'll be dry-camping again (no hookups), so Dar's going to run over to a laundromat in Quartzsite and wash up a few duds. I'm planning to get caught up on a few administrative tasks and work on a writing project.

We've really enjoyed our time here in Quartzsite. It's hard to beat the weather during the winter. The only negatives I can come up with are two: first, we're separated so far from other campers that it's necessary to make a real effort to wander over and say hello. I hadn't really thought about it before this, but that's probably one of the reasons RVers seem so friendly -- they're often so close to one another being friendly is a survival strategy. Still, both Dar and I enjoyed the solitude these past few days and we make the effort to meet others when we feel the need.

The second negative is the no hook-up thing -- and this really isn't a negative so much as a different way of thinking. We've drycamped before, but at the homes of friends and family. We could use their facilities and could run a hose to top off our freshwater tank if we needed to. In some cases, we ran an extension cord and had enough electric power to keep the batteries charged. But here, we're completely un-hooked. If we need water, it's a trip into town.

We've run into a bunch of people who thrive on being un-hooked and have bought equipment and developed strategies to prolong their endurance. They have solar panels so the sun will keep their batteries charged. They may have a wind generator for the same purpose. They can get by on as little as 3 or 4 gallons of water per person per day. They may have an LP powered catalytic heater to keep the camper warm at a lower cost. It's a lifestyle. We're not quite there yet, but I have been coveting a couple big solar panels for the roof.

Speaking of no hookups, I met a fellow at the rally in Casa Grande who built a set of fake hookups. It's a painted hunk of plywood that he lays on the ground next to his rig when drycamping. It has a 4" PVC sewer connection attached, along with a PVC water pipe and valve, and an electrical box sticking up out of it. He then runs his hoses and power cord over and "hooks-up". Of course, none of it actually works, but it sure prompts more than a few looks and questions. It's a great ice breaker with neighbors and creates good laughs as people wonder if there are any more hookups nearby. These RVers can be a nutty bunch, but it's my kind of humor.

My next post will probably be made from the Foreign Land of California, if they don't confiscate my air card and computers along with the apples and oranges at the border.



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