Picking up where I left off – a new day!

I have to admit that it took a few days to settle down after I left. That night, I stayed in Indio at Fantasy Springs casino and walked around then decided to eat. Though a little pricey, the buffet had plenty of offerings and I sat outside under a heater. I didn’t enjoy the food as much as I should have and the waitress kept coming over to check on me. I must have looked terrible! The next day, I drove to Coachella Valley Nature Preserve and took a much needed walk on one of the trails. I saw a coyote and a bunch of birds at the pond. There were a lot of people out and it was nice to walk outside again. After, I drove to Bombay Beach on the Salton Sea attempting to do some night photography. I was too tired but saw the crescent moon and some planets that I’ll have to look up, then spent the night at the Salton Sea Rec Center. The camp sites were awesome and the tent site worked for me. I also found some sites that had electric and will check that out again. There are also individual showers that are free. This is a very nice area by the water and I hope to visit again. The third night was a stay at the casino again and it was very convenient to the highway.

I met with the orthopedic surgeon in La Quinta who happened to graduate from a university in Chicago and appreciated the connection. I am going to have surgery to correct the trigger fingers in my right hand that are very painful. My surgery is scheduled for Feb. 9th. I don’t think I’ll be able to write for a while, but will do the best I can to keep the blog current.

In the meantime, I’ve been applying for jobs and talked to a couple of people and will keep my fingers crossed. Unfortunately, California is super popular for workampers, and I haven’t been able to find anything for the rest of the season. Since it’s already February, the season is more than half way through and I don’t think I’ll look for anything more at this point.

Quartzite had their annual RV show and I headed off to stay at one of the LTVA’s for a couple of weeks. An LTVA is a Long Term Visitor Area that only has dry camping and little or no amenities. Almost all of the RV’s are self-contained. La Posa has 4 locations and each one is slightly different with their own set of restrictions and amenities. I had to go to the North campground, which was fine for me because it was walking distance to the RV show, and one of the locations that allowed for non-contained vehicles to stay. It’s level ground and a huge open area and I found a place with a pit toilet that will tide me over for a few days. The only problem is that I am getting low on electricity and have to watch the car battery. I’m enjoying the spectacular sunrises and sunsets, but it’s been pretty cold and I had to fill my propane tank.
The diversity of campers was amazing and mostly quiet, except for a woman in her car with 3 barking dogs. Some of the campers in my section looked like they were homeless, with tents and no cars, or very beat up looking vehicles, and I felt a bit awkward. There were a lot of ATVers and it looks like a lot of fun.
At one point I had to take a shower and found a post on the bulletin board for the Isaiah 58 Project, a non-profit Christian organization who provides free 10 minute shower 3 times a week. I’ve never taken such a fast shower in my life! Fortunately, there was plenty of hot water. I made a clothing donation and went on my way.

The RV show had a huge tent with dozens of vendors and I enjoyed walking over there every day. There were new and used RV’s for sale, but the Class C inventory was small and overpriced. My list of vendors was small and I only found a couple of items that I wanted. However, my biggest purchase was a Lion Summit battery charger with 520 watts, a big upgrade from my tiny 300w battery. I dug out the 100w solar panel that was never used and tried to get it working with the new battery. Success! Got it to 86% and charged the rest in the van on my 12volt outlet. I was concerned about how the battery worked, but the customer service technician answered my questions and I gave them a thumbs up!
It was a fun show and I saw a lot of RVs that gave me a good idea about what to look for in a Class C, but the RV show in Tampa runs rings around this one. Quartzite is nowhere near as big.

In the end, it was a long week and I got tired of being in the desert with no power in the van. The only way I can charge my house batteries is with the engine battery, and the van has to be running. After several days of boondocking, I decided to move on.

The Rockpals battery that I replaced is for sale on Offer Up for $150.00. Please check it out and contact me if you are interested. It’s great for tent campers to charge electronics and also has a 110v outlet. I used this to charge my camera batteries and laptop.

Keeping calm and carrying on!

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