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  • Writer's pictureRobert Gidley

“Campsite was good, other than the morning shooting”

Feb 28, 2023 (Tue)

8:00 am Peoria, AZ

Well, our sleep app lied to us. Going to bed early didn’t make much difference, but then, we can always take a nap if need be.

Robert starts hearing odd sounds, like creaks and groans—or springs settling. When you own an RV, strange noises are not happy noises. Is something leaking? Is it on fire? Is it leaking and on fire?

Robert gets out to check the exterior to see if there are any flames or obvious leaks. As soon as he exits Harvey, he realizes what he’s hearing: gunfire! Turns out there’s a trap shooting range right next to this BLM land and this is Arizona, and they like to shoot guns. It’s a pretty steady background chatter, but now that we know it’s not Harvey falling apart, we relax a bit.

Home on the (shooting) range

10:00 am Peoria, AZ

The cell signal (which we use for our Wi-Fi) is terrible here and between that and the continued gunfire we decide that our fortunes lay down the road a bit. We find a café with a good signal (and a mediocre breakfast) and hang out there for a while.

Gini is not happy with our current spot

1:00 pm Peoria, AZ

We’re doing some re-provisioning after a couple of days of boondocking. We need more food, and we realize that we need more cigarette lighter adapters or whatever they call them these days—power stations? Harvey is so old that one of the sockets actually has a cigarette lighter in it.

The food store is near a Wal-Mart, so Robert heads in to pick up this stuff and as he approaches Wal-Mart, he hears the music that stores play to keep away young people. It used to be things like Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin, and yeah, Robert wouldn’t want to hang around and listen to that music, either.

But here, it’s One Thing Leads to Another by The Fixx (1983). Really, young people? This is music you can’t stand? Come on—yeah, it’s forty years old, but it still rocks? Doesn’t it??

2:45 pm Apache Junction, AZ

Since we easily survived boondocking, we figure we don’t need a lot of amenities at our RV parks. Just give us some electricity, some water, a sewage hookup and we’re good. Oh, and a pool.

But that leads us to a place that has no personality, no trees, and is cold and crowded. We couldn’t see the swimming pool (hidden in someone’s shed) and it was right next to a busy highway.

So we’re on to the next nearest place, just down the road. After driving through, we can see the pool, people are walking around, and it has lots of palm trees, so we can stay here. But they have no spaces for us to stay in—what? This is the first time this happened to us! But not the last…

Before we left Washington, Robert and a friend were talking about finding spaces in RV parks. Robert mentioned that there were a lot of RV parks in Arizona. So it should be easy to find a spot. Or really, really, hard, we both agreed.

Turns out we were correct. We spend the next half-hour parked in front of the office where we were told that the park was full—phoning every RV park we can find within a 50 mile radius. Even ones with no pools. Even ones that were more expensive. Even ones with “Resort” in their names. Full. Full. Full until April.

Aside from it being warm here and freezing cold everywhere else, there’s a baseball team from L.A. (The Angels) that does spring training here and apparently, that’s pretty big with the RV crowd.

3:00 pm Apache Junction

We are about to give up and resign ourselves to another night out boondocking when the manager of this park walks up to our window and asks if we’re still interested in a space here?

Are we!? You betcha! Not only is this place only $39 a night (cash only—but we’re not going to tell anybody), it’s got great Wi-Fi (on par with our home Wi-Fi!). The RV Spirits have smiled upon Harvey.

Our happy spot in this RV camp

On top of which, there’s an incoming storm (lightning! Rain!) and the park manager is pretty sure he can find spaces for us for the next few days. Then we’ll worry about what to do next.

From one corner of Phoenix to the other

Gini & Robert

Harvey Staff

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