Sunday, July 1, 2012

Alive and Well in Idaho

I’ve had a few emails from friends telling me that they miss my blog posts.  I miss my blog posts, too.  I write in my head every day but it hasn’t gotten any further than that, except for a couple posts that I wrote and didn’t publish. 

It’s not like I don’t have the time…I have more time on my hands than I know what to do with.  Therein lies part of the problem…I don’t want to be a whiner.  I’ve had some challenges this trip and I think if I wrote in the middle of the challenge I’d just whine and I don’t want to do that.  So you’ll probably get after the fact whining, which is different.  Then it’s just telling my story. 

Let’s back up a bit to May 10th when I finally left Tucson in my McMansion motorhome.  That seems to be the name that’s stuck.  Back in December when I bought my Alfa and I compared it to my original motorhome, a Winnebago View, it felt like a McMansion and I haven’t come up with anything better, so I refer to it as my McMansion motorhome.

The day before I left Tucson there was a pretty horrendous windstorm that blew through town.  As anxious as I was to get on the road I didn’t want to deal with the winds so I delayed a day. 

May 10th arrived and I was chomping at the bit to get going.  Lynn was my passenger and I was glad to have her with me for moral support.  The drive started out wonderfully and I was feeling pretty good about the whole thing.  I was a bit nervous at first driving this 40’ monster but I was determined to get comfortable with it. 

Some neighbors suggested that I take I-40 at Needles, CA, which I did, since I was heading for I-5.  The fun stopped almost as soon as I turned onto I-40 because of wind.  Strong side winds…really strong side winds. 

I guess there might be a downside to the extra height I have in my Alfa…more vehicle for the wind to hit.  AARGH.  It was awful and to make matters worse I couldn’t find an RV park!!

After thirteen hours on the road on day one I finally found one in Boron, CA.  It wasn’t much but it had everything I needed.  I was exhausted from fighting the wind for hours.  It was almost 8 PM and I needed a break.

The next day we got an early start, before the winds.  It turned out to be another long day (10 hours) because RV parks didn’t turn out to be as plentiful as I hoped, at least when it was time to start looking for one.  I finally found one in Cottonwood, CA and like the day before, it was awful, in fact, worse than awful, but it had the hookups I needed.  The man who checked me in wasn’t the brightest bulb around but he was impressed that me, a woman, was able to drive a 40’ motorhome, so maybe he wasn’t so dim after all.  I want to bristle as I write about his reaction but I kind of understand in a way and I’m impressed that I can drive a 40’ motorhome.  In fact, I still feel nervous as I’m about to take off.  Then I stop for awhile and the nervous builds up and I have to get back on the road again to DEAL WITH IT. 

Our last night on the road was at an RV park in Kalama, WA, on the Kalama River. I liked it there.  It was a challenge parking my McMansion motorhome but I managed.  I wanted to be down by the river which called for some creative backing up.  Fortunately, there weren’t any RVs on either side of me because there just wouldn’t have been enough room and I really wanted to be down by the water.  I’d just spent the past seven months in the desert and I was parched!!  I needed water and trees.

We arrived in Seattle on Mother’s Day.  I dropped my friend off and headed for Eastern WA. 

I have a friend from graduate school who has a 1400 acre vineyard in Horse Heaven Hills, not far from the Columbia River and Columbia Crest Winery.  After being cramped in an RV park for the winter I was looking forward to wide open spaces and visiting her provided that. She even had RV hookups!!!

So I went from mass humanity to out in the middle of nowhere with one other person.  No pun intended, but I was in Heaven!!!

When the winds started and I couldn’t sleep at night because my motorhome was being rocked in a way that didn’t put me to sleep I headed for Twin Falls, ID.  That’s where I am now. 

Before I finish this post…some thoughts...

*    RVing is expensive…$200 a day for gas!!!!!!!!!!!
*    Wind is not my friend when I’m driving my McMansion motorhome
*    Not having a toad is the pits (more on this in another post)
*    Maybe I’m not as adventurous as I thought I was

I have lots more to talk about but I think this is enough for this post. I'm glad to be back.  

Halfway between Seattle and Tucson,


PS:  It’s my birthday today.  Happy Birthday to me, Happy Birthday to me.  I'm so glad to have another one.  Happy Birthday to me.  


  1. And Happy Birthday from me to you. Just found your blog randomly and I do believe I will be back to see how your adventures unfold. I have cousins (yes, female) that have also traveled solo and they've been all over and loved it. Thanks for sharing. - Karen

  2. If you don't drive too far and long in one day, it won't be quite so expensive. :) I agree that not having a toad is the pits. I started out without one, but that didn't last long.

  3. Happy Birthday! I too am glad to see you posting again. I'm currently in the 'get S&B ready to sell, move into RV' mode. Your blog has had many helpful ideas, and helped to inspire me to tackle this project.

  4. Happy Birthday! Wasn't going to comment, until I got to the end.
    Nice motorhome btw. You're doing it!

  5. Yes, Happy Birthday to you! And thanks for sharing your adventures, good or bad. We can all learn a great deal from you. We understand about the wind - we, too, had some time in our RV at a winery in the Horse Heavens for a BBQ event - it blows like mad every year we are there.

  6. SO glad u are back!! Was worried after all of that time. I think last i caught you had just gotten the new motor home. glad things are going relatively well for you!!
    Take Care

  7. Oh and Happy Birthday to you too!!!! I have always wanted to learn Mah Jong....

  8. Happy Birthday Jeana, good to hear from you again as I had been wondering how you were doing. I have experienced the wind out there, not in my rv but when truck driving with hubby. It hit me so hard unexpectedly one day I thought I'd been hit by another semi!
    Seems everyones experiences are a little different and we can learn from each other. I am getting anxiuos to get back on the road myself.

  9. Happy Birthday!

    I see word verification has sprung up again! Curses!

  10. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  11. I want to add my Happy Birthday to the others. We are on a three week trip up to Crater Lake in our Alfa. I packed everything we need and still have lots of empty storage. We have put a few dings in her, had them repaired, and are finally learning to drive it.

    Looking forward to hearing more about how you are doing. Sometimes writing about what you are struggeling with really helps.

  12. Felicidades en su cumpleanos senora Jeana. It just takes time and repetitious driving/parking to get really comfortable behind a 40 footer. But - it will come quickly.

    I've missed reading your posts so was happy to see this one! The weather up here in Edmonds has been terrific - only one day of 70 degrees in past 3 or 4 weeks. Your old stomping grounds are pretty darned nice cool weather :-)

    Just wanted to say hi and let ya know lots of people are happy that you have started posting again. Merikay is right ya know - it always helps to talk abt things that are bothering ya. Great bunch of psychological counselors on here LOL. Drive safely and don't be in any hurries!