Take the Long Way Home

After a winter break in Tucson, we were finally, once again, Always On Da Fly! Seemed very odd to be traveling east after all of the adventuring in the previous months were roads and routes taking us to western landmarks. Now our destination is the Old Dominion State of Virginia, but this will NOT be a direct route. We have people to see, places to go and things to do along the way. Interstate 10 through Arizona and New Mexico was just beginning to display early signs of spring as many trees were beginning to show buds and glimpses of green. Our first overnight stop was Cabela’s in El Paso, Texas. If you should ever do so, you must go to Sushi Freak. Fast Food Japanese cuisine, but the value, quality and quantity were 5 Star.

After suffering through morning traffic to get out of El Paso, we were off to San Angelo, where 416 miles later we stopped at a Goodfellow AFB Recreation Camp on Lake Nasworthy. Western Texas should be a test bed for living on Mars. Miles and miles and miles of nothingness, briefly interrupted by scrub trees, lonely cattle, and vintage oil wells. Whenever there was a mesa in sight, it was covered with wind turbines. A harsh environment to make a living and raise a family.
Our travel route from San Angelo to Waco was a road trip on two lane farm roads that had little or no traffic. Interstate route probably could have gotten us there quicker, but we saw so many ranches, yesteryear’s gas stations and general stores, things you don’t catch on the freeway. The down sider was little or no services or opportunities to walk the dogs or get off the road for a “Photo Op”.

Waco was a short stay to visit family in nearby Gatesville. Last time we came through here, we were hampered by inclimate weather and this trip wasn’t much better. Deb and I unanimously decided, the next time we visit Texas, it’s NOT going to be February! We did go to the Waco Mammoth National Monument. A pretty strange place to find the remains of a 14-foot Columbian Mammoth and prehistoric camels.

A jaunt down I-35, a fuel stop and a quick bite at Buc-ees in New Braunfels, soon we were settled into San Antonio for a few days at Fort Sam Houston. A brief reunion and lunch with our fellow full time Rv’ers, Phil & Stacy Farley at Southerleigh Fine food & Brewery. Check them out on You Tube or Facebook at “You, Me and the RV”. A trip to San Antonio isn’t complete without a visit to Historic Market Square and dining at Mi Tierra Café y Panaderia.

With New Orleans on our radar and still 556 miles away, we were eastbound, enduring rainy weather and suffering through the pothole perils of Interstate 10. We split our journey by spending the night at a Wal-Mart in Lake Charles, Louisiana. We have had success overnight stopping at Wal-Mart, usually you can tell within minutes if it’s a safe place to park. We assess our surrounding and if it doesn’t feel right then we simply move on. There are several phone apps that provide free overnight RV parking information.

Clear blue skies were a welcome sight as we completed our journey to NOLA. We stayed at St. Bernard State Park and were welcomed by our old Virginia Beach friends and RV full-time newcomers, Billy & Darcy. They are westbound, we are heading back to Virginia. New Orleans seemed to be the ideal spot for a rendezvous. Deb and I had to revisit one of the “Cities of the Dead”, we had a nice dog walk to discover the Tree of Life at Audubon Park.

 

All of us went to the WWII Museum and we enjoyed “Po-Boys” at Parkway Bakery & Tavern! It was nice see hometown friends traveling and adventuring across America. We shared experiences over a few beers & campfires agreeing that this “full-time RV life” is a great way to transition into retirement.

Next stop…Alabama!!

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