‘Too Cold To Snow.’ I heard that phrase for the first time just before I left for the Frozen Tundra. (no, this is not about football – it’s about snow and ice)
I now know there must be such a thing as too cold to snow because yesterday I landed in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, aka ‘The Frozen Tundra’, and am experiencing bone-chilling cold as I’ve never known.
Here are some pictures taken before I knew better than to stand outside.
The Frozen Tundra, aka South Dakota.
Ok, ok, so I took the photos from inside the rental car. It was still really cold out.
The temperature last night was 28 degrees. WTF? I don’t own clothes for 28 degrees! I own bikinis. (It was originally going to be 16 degrees but I panicked and changed my flight. Twice. I TOLD you people I’m not well.)
Do you know what temperature it was a couple nights before I left Texas? 73 degrees! SEVENTY-THREE degrees at night!
This is the current temperature in Sioux Falls. (Why, you ask, are my butt-cheeks turning blue in Sioux Falls? Another one of those “anniversaries of my 29th birthday” is rapidly approaching and I need to renew my driver’s license. Why South Dakota? Because South Dakota is one of the few states that caters to full-time RVers. SD is awesome!)
Can you guess where Chickenbone (my sister) is? She’s in HAWAII. Again. What is she doing in Hawaii? She’s posting pictures ‘from the lanai’ where she’s having . . . → But wait, there’s more! : Too Cold To Snow and I’m Turning Blue
In this part of the country, atop the Eagle Ford Shale and in between all the cows, oil derricks dot the land.
One of the larger oil derricks in the area, and the subject of my tour.
Besides the cows and oil derricks there’s not a lot around for many, many miles. In this particular town the bovine to human population is 10:1. At the very least.
Traffic on the way to the oil derrick.
I really wish I owned land here.
Why? you ask. Do you like cows? you ask.
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : Big oilfields and big money in Texas
A Plethora of Tumbleweed.
Train and Tumbleweed An Ode to the Southwest
Never did I think I’d see,
Such a plethora of tumbleweed.
By north or south or west or east,
Far and wide lies the hearty beast.
Tumbleweeds cover the desert land,
So many so, they’re out of hand.
For hundreds of miles and days without end,
The tumbleweed seemed my only friend.
Laying low along the sandy flats,
My abundant friend holds mighty fast.
By blasting winds and extreme high heat,
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : Train and Tumbleweed
"As soon as I saw you, I knew an adventure was going to happen." ~Winnie the Pooh
It’s been twenty-eight days with my rig/house guest.
Twenty-eight days straight. In about 200 square feet of living space.
Despite the zombie movie reference, we didn’t kill each other.
This is HUGE for two, long-time single people.
We spent time in two states (California and Arizona), and two countries (US and Mexico).
And we had a blast!
I also learned a lot about myself, most of it good.
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : 28 Days Later
I don’t even know where to start. Really, I don’t. That’s partly why this post is so late in coming.
Many RVers know about Slab City, some like it, some don’t, but everyone said, ‘You have to experience it at least once.’
I asked, ‘Why? What’s the attraction?’ No one could really say why, they just said it was ‘different’.
My readers and fellow travelers have led me to some of the most interesting places so when they say I have to go somewhere, I usually go.
Plus, Me = Different.
While Slab City looks similar in some ways to scenes straight out of the Mad Max movies, it is unlike anything I’ve ever seen or experienced. I now understand why no one could muster an answer when I asked why I should go.
Rather than attempt a lengthy description, I’ll do a series of bullet-point descriptions occasionally accompanied by photos and a video. It’s that “A picture is worth a thousand words” thing. Plus, it’s easier because I’m swamped trying to get a new dinghy tow vehicle so I can get out of Dodge A.S.A.P.
For more detail about Slab City, read my two previous articles: one about the death in the hot springs, and one for Yahoo! News.
Slab City, Calif., A World Like No Other
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : Slab City is, umm, different. Very different. Kind of like me. Sort of.
Known locally as Creed's Castle, you can barely make it out on top of the plateau.
Rising up out of the St. George, Utah suburbs looms a large plateau. There is nothing on top of it: no trees, no other homes. Except for the castle.
For the many years members of my family have lived here I’ve wondered about this castle sitting on top of the plateau. At night I could see the lights in the castle turret come on and I was transfixed.
The castle was calling to me.
I wanted to see inside the castle. I wanted to see their view at night. And I wanted to know who lived there.
So on this trip to Utah I invited myself over to the castle.
No lie. This Princess invited herself to the castle. This is not a castle open to the public – it’s someone’s home.
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : I Crashed The Castle In St George, Utah
My knuckles are still white and now my eyes have that thing where they think stationary objects are moving.
You know that thing that happens when you’ve been staring at a moving item (in my case the road, or that text crawl at the bottom of a tv screen) for a looooong time and then you stop staring at it and then the stationary objects around you suddenly look like they’re moving?
Yeah. I’ve got that.
And white knuckles.
Holy Dirty Diapers!
I know y’all think I’m brave, but I scared myself. Actually, the crappy condition of the LA freeways scared me. The roads (the 405, parts of the 101, and parts of the 5) were SO BAD I thought I had flat tires. Plural. Seriously.
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : My Knuckles Are Still White
It was touch and go for a while there. But two relatively minor sewer problems later, and one emergency trip to the vet, and I am officially on my way to San Diego.
Holy Crap, y’all. What was I thinking taking my (not so) skinny butt on the road in a big RV?
With a cat that hates to be in moving vehicles?
I’m sure this is just my usual panic-mode of coping with new situations, combined with the “RV newbie” fear. Right? (say ‘yes’) This will probably all be old hat after this first test run is over and I get back to northern California in about two and a half weeks.
Driving from northern California to BlogHer in southern California is actually a perfect opportunity for a test run. I’m sure I’ve packed way too much stuff, and in some cases not nearly enough (Food? Who needs food?).
But I have an outfit for most every occasion and that’s what’s important. Yes, and shoes. I plan to be at BlogHer in time for the Thursday night party in one of the aforementioned outfits. This RV? She’s got closet.
My motto is: There’s no sense in traveling if you can’t bring your cutest clothes.
(Video of the inside of my RV at end of post.)
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : RV Road Trip to BlogHer ’11 Starts NOW
This blog is about to change. A lot.
For the better, I hope. But I can’t make any promises.
I’m almost officially a gypsy. If all goes as planned by this time next week I’ll have no “permanent home”, and few possessions. Before you start to feel sorry for me, know that I’ve been looking forward to this for a long time.
Uhh, what did you just say?? You’ve been looking forward to this?
Remember, I’m here because I’m not all there.
I didn't know you could get them gilded! Next time I'm ordering mine gilded.
For almost two years now I’ve fantasized about getting a motorhome, traveling the country like a gypsy while writing about my adventures. Granted, I often don’t know the difference between a fantasy and a plan. But is there really a difference? Must they be mutually exclusive?
And my dream is about to begin. I bought an RV, and will take possession of it in about a week. I can’t wait! I’m excited, and really hope I can pull this off.
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : The Great Roll-About: Single Female Traveling Long Term in an RV
Guess what I learned recently? A study found the brain views money as a drug. They found it lessens social distress and physical pain.
No shit? Well, color me addicted.
They also suspect it is a substitute for romance.
Coincidentally, I’ve just found my new boyfriend!
This is a picture of my bank account after I win the lottery. No, wait. It's a picture of my new boyfriend. No, that's not it either. It's a picture of BOTH!
To quote the article Study: Your Brain Thinks Money Is A Drug by David Kestenbaum,
If you’ve ever thought of money as a drug, you may be more right than you know. New research shows that counting money — just handling the bills — can make things less painful.
Money As A Substitute For Love
If you don’t share this story, zombies will get you. (Just a . . . → But wait, there’s more! : My Brain Thinks Money Is A Drug and My New Boyfriend