Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Fourth Day on the road: Smooth Sailing

 First off I must say the rest area last night was very noisy.   Truck sounds from I-40 and we had to park along the exit of the rest area so trucks were gearing up and passing right next to us most of the night.  The place was overloaded with trucks.

We did manage to sleep most of the night despite the noise and because our bodies are still on CST we woke at 8 o'clock and had breakfast.  We were out of there at 9 and stopped for diesel soon after.  That took about an hour and we were actually on our way towards Deming, New Mexico at 10 o'clock.

We were soon turning off I-40 onto hwy 54 finally heading south.  My two traveling companions were ever vigilant.

I must say the first part heading south was a lonesome highway with not much to see.  Nick managed to find something.

It wasn't long before we started seeing mountains in the distance.

We pulled over in a small town at a closed building like many are in these small towns and had lunch at noon.

After lunch we passed the White Sands National Park.  Didn't stop because we'll see a lot more west of Yuma later next month.

Then we started approaching Santa Cruz from the east and I had forgotten there is a mountain pass to go through and it was long and steep.  I had the White Lion in first gear and crawling at 30 mph with the water temperature rising, but we just barely made it over.  For a minute there I thought I was going to have to stop and let it cool down.  Luckily there was a passing lane and very little traffic.

Climbing the hill out of Santa Cruz, we passed a fuzzy Road Runner.

Overall, hwy 54 and 70 were very smooth and well maintained.  It was an enjoyable scenic drive.  We finally hooked onto I-10 and less than an hour later we are now in the Deming Walmart parking lot for the night.  Made good time today as it is only a little after 3.  Checked at the service desk and they gave me the high sign for overnight.

Tomorrow our goal is the west side of Tucson, only about 3 hours west on I-10.  Looking forward to a short drive.

Monday, November 29, 2021

Third Day on the road: Smooth Sailing

 We had another beautiful day with no wind and smooth roads most of the way through Texas.  New Mexico roads are a little rougher.  

We got up around 8 o'clock and had breakfast and left the Walmart around 9:15 for a good start.  Our goal was Santa Rosa, New Mexico.  We got diesel soon after leaving and stayed on I-40 the entire day.  Yuma led the way.

Left Oklahoma behind and entered Texas heading for Amarillo.
Amarillo was really spread out and there was a lot of construction but not much of a slowdown.  Must be 20 miles across the city.

We took a lunch break at a rest stop.  First time doing this and it was refreshing so will continue taking these breaks for the remainder of the journey.

Yuma met a friend heading to Apache Junction for the winter.  Cute covers for the lunch tables.

Finally reached New Mexico and moved into Mountain Time.

Finally saw our first train.

We didn't quite make it to Santa Rosa.  We came across a rest area about 20 miles east of town and decided to call it a night.  With the time change it was 3 o'clock.   Thankful for another uneventful day and hoping tomorrow is another quiet day as we head south finally.

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Second Day on the road: Smooth Sailing

 Nick, Yuma and I made it through the second day on the road with a beautiful warm and windless ride.  Before leaving I took a few pictures of our stop for the night at Conway Route 66 rest area.

The side walk from the parking area to the building has a number of small buildings used for shelters covering picnic tables.

Here's our parking place for the night.  Filled with trucks but not too noisy.
We got on the road after breakfast at 9 AM heading ever west.  Made our first stop fairly soon to pick up some oil.  Noticed the oil level was low.  Took about one and a half quarts to put it back to normal.

Right before going into Oklahoma and getting on the turnpike to Tulsa we stopped to top off the tanks so I could make it to our night's destination.  Hit the border with a full tank of diesel.

I-44 going through Oklahoma was smooth sailing.  Just had to keep my eyes on the road because the traffic was fairly busy.  Yuma was helping 😊

Have to give credit to Nick for the pictures.  Here is a beauty as we bypassed Tulsa looking back to the east while going over the Arkansas River.

We continued on I-44 from Tulsa on the Turnpike and completely bypassed Oklahoma City.  Didn't have to take I-40 right through the city.  That is a nice improvement.

Ended up in Weatherford, Oklahoma Walmart about 50 miles west of Oklahoma City around 4 PM and called it a night.

Before anything else I had to figure out the Dish Tailgater and get it going to watch Yellowstone.  Ended up calling Dish helpline and they got me going about half hour before the program started at 7 o'clock.  Glad I made it.

Time for us to get some sleep.  Hope tomorrow goes as well.

Saturday, November 27, 2021

First day on the road: Smooth Sailing


I will be traveling this winter with my 21 year old Grandson, Nick.  He is Steve and Tracie's youngest son and he just graduated from his first two years of college and is taking the winter off to travel.  First time away from home.  This should be an experience.  We'll see who makes it home in April😁

We started out this morning with packing Nick's stuff and hooking up the Jeep and we were on the road by 10:30.

First large city was the state capital, Springfield, home of President Abe Lincoln.
Yuma is already wanting to go home!πŸ˜’
We took the I-270 bypass around St. Louis but still caught the Arch from a distance.
Crossed over the Mississippi River into Missouri.
Made one stop for diesel and then made it to our destination at the Conway rest area around 5:30.  Six hours is long enough for our first day.  We're ready to eat something and call it a day.  

Hope tomorrow goes as smoothly.

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Time is ticking down!

 We've had some pretty cool nights this past week.   Down to 23 or so and Thanksgiving night down to 18 degrees.  Definitely getting tired of this cold weather.  

We have some moderate days with sunshine so I took the opportunity to mow the lawn and collect all the leaves so I am done with that for this winter.  The leaves finally fell this last weekend so it has been a late Fall.

I'm done with the inside cleaning of the White Lion and Friday I will pack for the journey.   Oh yes, found out that my front tires on the Jeep were bad and that was causing the front-end shake at speed.  Two new front tires, a balance and all is well $548 later.😠

Today I decided to take the White Lion down to fill the propane tank so I can test the my new Big Buddy heater before I leave.   Dolly carefully guided me out of the driveway and off I went.  Got the propane and also diesel. 

Still have to pack my personal stuff and food and I will be ready to go.  Then all I will have to do Saturday morning is to hook the jeep and head out.πŸ˜€

Yuma says "I'm ready to go!"

Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Getting ready to travel

 Slowly moving through the "To Do List" in preparation for "D" day on the 27th.  The outside of the White Lion is done and I've been slowly cleaning the inside.  Finished the driving area, living and kitchen areas.  Still have the bathroom and bedroom areas to go but they won't be too hard.  I took all the shelves out of the fridge and cleaned it.  That was a choir I'm glad to be done with.  I can't believe I have less than two weeks to go.

I bought a Big Buddy heater on Amazon and my son-in-law, Evan is helping me to connect it to the 100 gallon propane RV tank.  It will be more reliable and more efficient than the MH heating system.

Tomorrow I am taking the Jeep in to have the front end checked out.  I believe I have hit one too many rocks and ruts over the years and it now has a shake when driving at 65 miles an hour.  Might be a problem when towed by the White Lion at 70 mph.

Starting next week I will be packing everything I need for the trip and a few groceries to get me started.  Hoping all is done on Friday except for connecting the Jeep.  I'll do that Saturday morning just before leaving.  I have an unexpected announcement to make when I leave so stay tuned.

Yuma is getting excited!πŸ˜€


Tuesday, November 9, 2021


 Things are beginning to move.  The weather has been very warm the last few days and   I was down to the last days to get the outside of the MH washed before the cold hits.  I spent Sunday and Monday scrubbing.  

Sunday, I washed the top off and got all the solar panels cleaned from seven months of dust.  It is kept under a cover but there are no sides so the winds blew dust from the fields around us onto it.  I finished Sunday with doing one side too and called it a day.

Monday was another beautiful day so finished the other side and the front and back and then all the wheels to finish it off.  Must say it looks much better now.  So glad to have that chore done!

We've had several visitors stop by for visits on their way to the southwest.  Tom and Deb, Celebrating the Dance stopped by on October 20th on their way from northern Michigan to Arizona.  We enjoyed the visit and it has sparked me to start preparing for my 10th journey to Arizona.  Will catch up with them next month.  Safe journey.

Tom, Deb, Doug, Dolly

Doug, Deb, Tom

Today, Bill On Our Way and Patsy, Chillin' with Patsy stopped on their way from Priceville, Ontario to Arizona.

Bill, Patsy, Gibbs

Their little pup, Gibbs was just the sweetest.  He would come up to Yuma but when Yuma wanted to play, he was a little too aggressive, so Gibbs would run back to Patsy for safety.πŸ˜€  They will have more time to play in the Arizona desert next month.

Gibbs and Yuma

Bill, Patsy, Doug, Gibbs, Yuma
We had a very nice visit and they will be staying at our Walmart just up the road for the night.  Tomorrow, they are heading for southern Missouri.  Safe travels.

My plans right now are to be ready to head out with Yuma on Saturday, November 27th.  See you later.

Monday, November 8, 2021

Fun in Indianapolis, Indiana

 Monday - November 8, 2021

I guess it's time to rev up my blog for my next adventure starting with our overnight trip to the Indianapolis Monumental Marathon.  Dolly and I have been accompanying our runners to this event since the first event.  This one was number 13!

This time we had three runners:  Our son Steve ran the full marathon and our daughter, Kristi and grandson, Nick ran the 5K.

We arrived to our hotel Friday afternoon and the race started at 8 o'clock the next morning and it was a little brisk at around 28 degrees, but it warmed nicely through the morning to hit a nice 59 degrees.

Don't know the number in attendance, but there were a ton of runners and spectators at the event.  The runners took off in waves.  Marathoners then half marathoners and 5K runners last.

Steve took off at 8 o'clock and Kristi and Nick were set to go at 8:35.  Yuma and Fergie were watching the race too.

Then it was Dolly and I with the doggies waiting for our runners to finish their race.

First runner in was Nick.  He ran the 5K in 23 minutes and 25 seconds.
Next came Kristi.  She made it in 51 minutes and 1 second.
Steve ran his second best time at this event with a time of 2 hours 59 minutes and 31 seconds.  He's always happy when he runs an under 3 hour marathon.
Dolly and I are proud of our three athletes.  It was a beautiful day and everyone had an enjoyable time.
Our oldest son, Ben and his family live in Lebanon, Indiana and we always stop by for a visit on our way home.  We had a great visit even though there were some tired bodies, including mine and I didn't even run!  The 10,000+ steps were enough to do me in.  

Great looking family!

Ben, Chandler, Margie, Luke and Amelia

We stopped at Culvers on the way home and had a great dinner.  Their food was fresh and delicious.  Got home at 5 o'clock and Dolly and I were ready to call it a day.

See you later.