Today is the first day of spring and we are starting to think about leaving Southern California’s delightful winter weather and resuming our journeys to parts unknown. Well, maybe not unknown but different from here.
It has been a particularly wet winter here in SoCal but we were extremely fortunate not to have the horrible weather seen throughout most of the country this year. There have been substantial wintertime tornadoes in the Midwest and the South. Northern California has experienced record snowfalls that came right after terrible fires. The mud is a-slidin’. Many Republicans have had their ample estates cut off from their stockbrokers by tough weather that severed roads and highways. Here at Pio Pico, the long-time formerly parched stream bed that runs the length of the campground was awash with water, sometimes ignoring shorelines and running unfettered through the park and beneath expensive recreational vehicles. For a couple days we were prevented from leaving the campground due to high water crossing all the escape routes. Since we had everything we needed right in our Barbarian Invader fifth wheel, we were not inconvenienced and were able to enjoy taking short trips to go view the carnage.
After one particularly nasty gully washer, we were able to head out to Point Loma and Cabrillo National Monument on the last little spit of land west of downtown San Diego. The rains had cleared all the crud out of the air and looking from the Point back over San Diego and all the way to the Laguna mountains 50 miles east and 7000 feet higher resulted in absolutely stunning views. Just a few days ago, from our campsite in Pio Pico, we settled into our spiffy outdoor folding furniture and watched hundreds or maybe thousands of Lady Butterflies passing by on their migration from Mexico to their summer digs in Oregon. From this same campsite we can watch the activities of the Border Patrol as they pursue those crossing from Mexico without the benefits of passports or visas as they make their way into anonymity and substandard wages. Poor bastards.
We intend to lurk in SoCal for about 3 more weeks and then we will leave the gorgeous weather here and head north. We are going to Cabo one more time before we depart but then, after re-stocking for extended travel, we will bugger off and take a long, circuitous route to Concrete, Washington, where my favorite Thousand Trails facility lurks beneath massive Douglas Fir trees along the Skagit River. There is also the best hamburger joint known in the nearby town of Sedro Woolley where I can go to violate healthy eating guidelines for old people. Just thinking about it makes me think I may be a reincarnated Pavlov’s dog.
There’s a few early 2019 pix to see if you click the link. https://photos.app.goo.gl/h3mzr5gm3RZ5RX7m9
It is now past the middle of February but the weather here in San Diego seems to not recognize historical patterns this year. We have been moving back and forth between our home park, Thousand Trails Pio Pico, and a very nice San Diego County Park called Sweetwater Summit but the 10 miles between them does not put us into a different weather pattern. It has been raining an extraordinary amount for this local desert environment. Long-dry stony creek beds are now full, and sometimes overfull, since November. The surrounding countryside in most recent years has been either a light brown or flame-colored but this year all the grasses, trees and bushes are a brilliant emerald green. Just a few days ago, we were obliged to remain in the Pio Pico campground area for two days because the roads both ways from the park were flooded. A large contingent of Thousand Trails members had gathered near the entrance from the east to the park to watch motorists who thought their small, low cars would pass through the raging torrent exiting the creek in the park and crossing the highway. Some of the motorists were correct, some were mistaken but the smart ones turned around to take the 45 minute drive around on rural roads. Unfortunately for them, the road was also flooded west of the park so they should have considered traveling another day. Peggy had convinced me to go shopping the day before all the flooding started so we were just as happy as could be while malingering close to our fifth wheel for the duration of the temporary road closures.
So far this winter we have been here for some four months and, considering the El Nino weather freezing out almost the entire remainder of the country, we appear to have guessed right when scheduling a long stay this season. We have completed some onerous tasks while here, including some truck service, considerable trailer repair from our two unfortunate trailer tire blowouts which tore up quite a bit of trailer wiring and undercarriage components, not less than seven forays into Tecate, MX, to get our old teeth fixed by the reasonably-priced female dentist we have found there. We both got a nasty cold or flu and were mutually required to cough up many things resembling yellow jellyfish.
I purchased and have been operating an eraser wheel to slowly remove the funky decals that were ugly when we bought our traveling home and have gotten more scroungy since. It is very slow work because the adhesives used to bond the infernal decals to the gelcoat trailer walls are very tenacious and resist all efforts to remove them.
We got to spend Xmas and New Year’s with our kiddos Dana, Sam and Kate, Sam’s wife. We got in contact with a few of our friends. I received a cell phone from the kids for Xmas, a brutal deed that I may never forget. I am quite stupid regarding my new smart phone but I can sometimes get help from children to make the confusing device operate consistent with my wishes. I am almost up to idiot status after a month and a half of near-total confusion.
We have some medical visits to the doctor, a bit of Medicare stuff and a final service on the truck before we leave the San Diego area for this year’s adventure. We also are going to make another trip to Cabo with my sister, Julie, before departure. We don’t generally go to Cabo twice in one year but Julie won a free week at our timeshare and was sweet enough to have us accompany her. We thought refusing would be rude, if not moronic, so we are going.