Friday was our last full day at Golden Village Palms RV Resort in Hemet, California. We started with our usual time on the pickleball courts and played until nearly noon. I spent the afternoon organizing the trailer and packing everything away. It was just about 5pm by the time I loaded the Traeger and scooter and locked the trailer. It was time for a shower and happy hour. Our friends Ron and Marilyn Cross invited us for dinner at their place but we took a rain check until next time.
Donna took her backpack and walked to Marshalls where she returned a couple of items, then walked to Stater Brothers to pick up a few groceries. When she returned and emptied her backpack, Ozark thought the backpack was a nice place for her to explore. She crawled into the backpack and made herself comfortable. We were surprised to see her do that – she doesn’t usually like to get under covers but she was happy to hide in the backpack.
We hoped to make an early getaway Saturday morning but we weren’t ready to hitch the trailer until 10am. A few minutes later we were on the road. I wanted to leave early because high winds were in the forecast for the afternoon. We took CA79 north to Beaumont where we hit I-10 east. The wind picked up but it was a tailwind as we headed east. With the tailwind and downgrade from Banning to the desert floor, we were coasting along at 62mph. We made a stop for fuel in Thousand Palms at the Pilot/Flying J travel center. I probably could’ve waited until we crossed into Arizona to fuel up and save a few bucks, but I don’t like running below a quarter tank. I took on 50 gallons for peace of mind.
East of Indio, I-10 climbs to Chiriaco Summit, then drops back down to the desert. The wind shifted and we had a cross wind from the south. In a few areas there were columns of dust blowing – not really a full-on haboob – just a light dust storm.
Donna sent a text message to Jeff and Deb Spencer (Rolling Recess) when we crossed the border into Arizona. They’ve been here for about three weeks now – they had a booth in the big tent for the Quartzsite RV show. Jeff told us to take the Dome Rock exit and follow the road for about two miles and we would see his GMC Denali pickup truck. The Dome Rock Road exit is about 11 miles into Arizona. We found Jeff and his wife Deb waiting for us on the side of the road. They led us back to the area where they’re boondocking. It turned to be only a few hundred yards from the place we stayed two years ago. I wrote about it in this post.
We set up quickly in a level spot with plenty of open space around us. The road we followed in dead ends at a wash, thus we have very little traffic here (map).
Donna invited Jeff and Deb to join us for dinner. In her usual fashion, Donna chose a recipe she’d never made before to serve our dinner guests. She prepared a Marseilles-style shrimp stew with fresh shrimp she picked up the night before at Stater Brothers. She also toasted French baguette slices and spread them with rouille (a sauce made with mayo, garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, cayenne and paprika). It was delicious. The toasted baguette with rouille was the perfect accompaniment for the stew – that and a bottle of champagne.
Jeff brought firewood and built a fire on the leeward side of our rig. We’re parked facing west and the wind from the south hits the driver’s side, making a nice wind block on the passenger side. While we were eating dinner inside, the wind really picked up.
I had four camp chairs set up around the fire. While we were eating dinner, we heard one of the chairs blow over. Jeff went outside and found it in the fire! It was one of the chairs we bought here at the Quartzsite big tent two years ago. Jeff joked about its lifespan being cradle to grave in Quartzsite. Oh, well. Donna’s had her eye on some new chairs.
After dinner, I pulled the living room slide in – the wind was causing the slide topper to flap like crazy and make quite a ruckus. We went outside and sat around the fire. Deb cooked up s’mores while we chatted. As usual, the time flies while we’re enjoying good company. It was past 10pm before we knew it.
This morning, Donna and Deb went out for a three-mile power walk. After their walk, we toured their Domani fifth-wheel trailer. They pulled out today. We plan to spend another night here before we head up to Lake Havasu tomorrow. The wind is blowing again and is expected to increase throughout the day. I’ll probably pull the living room slide in again tonight.
This morning, our Verizon reception was weak – a couple of bars of 3G. I almost skipped writing a post because of it. Then I relocated the Jetpack and the signal improved to two bars of 4G LTE. It’s always nice to have an Internet connection.