As we traveled along the roadway, new vistas would open up occasionally, revealing great beauty or majesty for us to ooohhh and ahh over. The lake at Eagle's Nest was breathtaking in it's broad scope and glorious landscape.
We were soon past Eagle's Nest and up over Bobcat Pass and across the Continental divide. Elevation 9800 feet.
We rolled into Red River, a charming ski town, around noon on Thursday and checked into Red River RV park where we had reservations until Sunday. They put Joe Paul's rig near the office, backed up to a trout stream. We were sent to the other end of the park, backed up to the road. Since we eat most of our meals together etc, it was a bit inconvenient to take food, crafts, etc back and forth between the rigs.
In spite of the extra walking, the visit was pleasant, the people there were very friendly and helpful. Camp hosts Paul and Linda were delightful. When we arrived, they were working at a table in front of their rig, making beaded bracelets that they sold to a gift shop in Questa. As an artist, it is always such fun to meet creative people.
No matter where you are, there is a routine for living. When traveling, it kind of goes like this:
1. Get up, make coffee, guys visit back and forth, we plan breakfast, cook breakfast, clean up. After clean up, loaf around, go to town, do light housekeeping, shower, etc. Then do Number 2.
2. Plan lunch. Eat out? Cook in? Once decided, we either get in Joe Paul's truck and go to town to eat, or fix lunch, clean up.
3. Afternoon: Shop? Tourist event?? Play with crafts???
4. Plan Dinner/Supper. Eat out? Cook in? once decided... you get the picture.
5. Evenings. TV? Movie? Crafting? Bonfire??? We're on vacation, maybe do any, all or none.
6. Bedtime. Whenever we feel like it, early, late, who cares?
That night we had our first dinner at Joe Paul and Nancy's rig, with us carrying in our part of the meal while balancing an umbrella and holding the doggy leash.
It rained a lot while we were there, but the rain falls straight down. You don't have to close your windows, and the water is absorbed right away so not many muddy puddles. We went to town that afternoon to ride the lift to the top of the mountain, but it had just been closed due to an oncoming storm with lighting.
We were at the bottom of the lift by ten on Thursday morning ready to ride. Since I had slightly rocked the seat on a ferris wheel one time, years ago, Joe preferred to ride the lift alone. Go figure! So he went first, me second and Joe Paul and Nancy rode up together. Getting on to a moving seat was a bit of a challenge with a tote and sweatshirt in one hand. My camera and umbrella were in the tote and I was carrying the sweatshirt "Just in case..". Once seated, the camera was put to good use. The ride was thrilling, often we were looking down at tree tops. Several times during the half hour ride to the top, the lift would suddenly stop, leaving us swinging slightly in the breeze. That was OK by me, all around us, the mountains, slopes and trees were glorious. The sun was quite warm, but the breeze was cool and refreshing. At the top of the lift, we had to now get off of the moving seat. We were told to step out and walk forward. What they forgot to tell us was to walk very fast forward or the seat would bump your backside and stop the lift. Joe got off first and hollered at me to go fast getting off. I turned around and grabbed Nancy by the hand when they arrived, hurrying her forward, but Joe Paul did not move fast enough. After bumping his backside, the lift stopped.
The view from the top was inspiring. We could see snow covered mountain tops in the far distance. However, the sun was very bright at the higher elevation, over 11,000 feet. Out came the umbrella, now for shade instead of rain. After taking some pictures and laughing at the cheeky chipmunks, we headed down the mountain again. By now clouds had covered the sun and the sweatshirt was warm and cozy. Joe Paul and Nancy went first, me next and then Joe. At the bottom, Joe Paul got away in time but Nancy did not. The lift stopped.
After lunch in town, we headed back to the RV park for some R & R.
Friday afternoon in our rig, I showed Nancy the explosion albums that I had been making with polymer clay covers. Since she is a scrap booker, she was eager to learn how to make one. After supper in her rig, we pulled out all her scrap book stuff, played with the punches, and ooohhed and aaahed over the pretty papers.
On Saturday, Nancy and I sat at her table outside under the awning and we again drug out all of her papers, card stock, punches, glue, etc, etc.... After choosing the three card stock patterns and colors, we folded and glued the album pages together to make the explosion effect when opened. Much conversation ensued as to whether the album would be for journaling, pictures, or a mix of journaling and pictures. The next discussion was about an appropriate cover. She decided, not to use polymer clay, but wanted instead a card stock cover with a frame in which to put a picture of their rig. Added elements such as a title, pine trees, flower, leaves, butterfly and frog punches using appropriate colored papers would embellish the cover.
We were having so much fun and enjoying the glorious cool so much that we really did not want to leave for home on Sunday as planned. Joe Paul and Nancy mentioned another campground on the other side of town that they really liked, having stayed there before. Larger sites, tall trees and WIFI!! With that happy news, we decided to stay three more days and we would move on Sunday morning when our time was up at Red River RV park and go home on Wednesday.
The next morning, on Sunday, Linda, Nancy and I walked to a small Baptist Church just around the corner from the campground and over the bridge. The fellowship and message was a blessing. While we girls were in church, Joe Paul moved his rig to the new campground. Joe broke camp and was waiting for us when we exited church after the service. We started walking toward the motor home when a big brown dog started running and chasing after us. We were nearly scared to death, but the doggy only wanted to say hi and slobber all over us.
Our new spot was fabulous Tall trees on three sides, and our rigs were side by side. No more carrying dishpans full of stuff from one rig to the other. We were just a few feet apart.
Joe and I both logged onto the web using our respective laptops. His a PC and mine a Mac. What fun to check our emails, forums, and websites. As my granny used to say "We were in hog heaven!". Not quite sure what that means but she always said it when everything was going right and she was happy.
That night, after cooking steaks on the grill for supper, and clean up over, Joe Paul built a big campfire between our rigs. We toasted marsh mellows and drank Lemon Drop Martinis. When you are camping, you sometimes have to substitute ingredients, but the martinis were still great tasting and a relaxing end to a good day.
Monday was more of the same. Step 1, then laundry in the camp laundromat, lunch in town, then back to the park for doggy walking. In a lovely setting with lots of trees, river with rapids, foot bridges, and walking paths it was easy to stay out walking for a long time. It became obvious that the weather and environment was so good, that we had to book two more days, and leave on Friday. We had not turned on our air conditioner since moving into the spot under the trees. And, like every night since we arrived, the furnace was turned on to take the chill off of the rig. The temperature reached the low forties before morning that night.
By Tuesday, Nancy had decided how she wanted to make the covers for the explosion album. We sat under our awning and played during the afternoon. She working on the album, me sculpting a bit. However, her project was so interesting that we both got involved with it. We used her card stock, punches etc. I contributed a gold edging to the cardstock from my work kit. It turned out to be a very nice album. As we played, it began to rain softly. We stayed under the awning until we were so cold we got up to get sweaters and blankets to stay warm.
During that afternoon, Joe was checking the reports on his backup service and realized that one did not make. Trying to figure out why, he logged onto his home computer then reviewed the servers. One was not responding. Our company, daughter Viktoria, was still at the house so he called her and asked if she could go to the computer room and check the server. They worked together on the phone long enough for him to diagnose that a drive had crashed. After a lengthly attempt via the web to re-route the backups, it became obvious that we would have to leave the next morning.
He woke up in the middle of the night with an idea of how to save our trip and make the backups. He started the work around by logging onto our computer at home and working on the servers from the mountains. By morning, he had it under control and we were able to stay one more day. We took long walks and enjoyed the trout stream, visiting with other campers and watching children laughing and playing around the campground.
We ended up leaving around ten in the morning the next day and drove the entire 700 miles home in one stretch. When we hit the lower elevations, it seemed as though the air was not only hot, but heavy and hard to breathe.
We arrived home safely after a sixteen hour drive with breaks only for food and coffee. The next day, at home, unloading the rig was a sad event. Earlier in the month we had put up the rig for sale. Before we left, the mailman told us that he wanted to purchase the Couch Mobile. He would be picking it up in less than a week after our return. It is amazing how much stuff you can put into a 30' rig over eight years. I am still trying to find places to put it away. We decided to keep the things from the rig together, linens, cookware, swim wear etc so that when we replace the rig, these things can more easily be loaded into it.
I was outside this afternoon when the mailman dropped off the mail. He and his family are having a ball with the rig and he told me a lot of stories. We are so happy to know that they are enjoying it as much as we did.
Growing up in a small town in the Midwest during mid 20th century. Various philosophies and impressions formed and insights revealed resulting in attitudes and actions for the 21st Century.