Monday, March 16, 2020

And Then There Were Four, Gorgeous Day Afoot, Black Beauty

Hidden Valley RV Mountain Resort, Tijeras, NM
On Monday, Mar. 16th, Bill and I got up at 6:30. The last hour was one of restlessness for me, tossing and turning, stretching an ache in my left leg. Has to be the travel days even though they aren’t long ones. We had our brew together and sitting there I was rewarded with a beautiful sky and sunrise. The visible clouds weren’t threatening and soon dissipated.

We saw Oreo and Keith outside around 8 starting to close his camper down. We went out to get goodbye hugs. By 8:35 he was pulling out. I needed to change the time zone on my camera so picture times were correct.

Cute picture of two good friends
Aah, look at that cute little Oreo
I'll miss seeing her
See ya back home, Keith!
It was a cool 27F/-3C when we got up but promising warmth in our direction of travel. Even Gallup was rising to 64F which is very nice. We took our time on I-40, the road much better in this section and even more beautiful views today.

A New Mexico picture isn't complete without a train rumbling through

I liked this view with all the terrain contrasts
 We stopped at Exit 79 for fuel in Milan. The prices are pretty good. Fueled up for $2.75/gal and we hope it remains the same or drops as we head further east. We’ve heard ridiculously low prices back home too. 

Turning into the fuel station, this stainless steel diner
caught my eye

this should be an Airstream diner
I chatted on text with Bridgette back home and my sisters. Many are concerned about what they’re hearing on the news, encouraging us to get home before Mar. 23rd. Not our family, the news media. We’re sticking to the plan, so far playing things by ear.

Still some rocky landscapes along this part of I-40
 It was just before 12 noon when we took exit 178 to Zuzax and when I saw that name, I said ‘oh yes, that funny name’. There is a bit of a steep hill into the park but it is short and we had no issues. Once registered, we followed instructions to the top of the hill and got sites beside each other. This is a no-nonsense park and that mainly means that it isn’t fancy by any means. You are here to stay a few nights and to sight see the Albuquerque area. We will stay here two nights.

After setting up Bill and I made some lunch. I had a wrap and Bill had a sandwich which hit the spot. Imagine that, we were eating right on time! Then, Bill and I took a drive into Albuquerque to the Rich Ford dealership. We’d decided to have the truck looked at and see what was involved and how long it would take to get it fixed. We met a nice man, Travis, in the service department who said they’d try to get at it today or if not, first thing in the morning. We couldn’t ask for any more than that.

It was a possibility that we could have been shuttled the 18 miles back to the park but we didn’t think Ken would mind coming to get us. And we were right about that, good friends help you out when in need. We’ve sure experienced that this winter again and again. After Ken brought us home, we felt like a nap was in order so stretched back in our recliners for 30 minutes before Happy Hour. The sun was very warm and welcoming.

A commenter suggested this Route 66 Casino for an overnight stop
It would be great, there was a lot of room in the parking lot

Two or three ospreys flew over before Albuquerque
and we remembered the airport

Pretty overpasses

Even these aren't just plain concrete
 At 3, I made a tea and moved outside to the front of the Journey. These sites are certainly not conducive to sitting out beside your rigs but we made it work. Bill soon joined us and got our chairs out. We would use them for two days. We were sitting there about half hour when our neighbor, Jim, from Pennsylvania walked over to chat. He is a very nice man and we shared stories of the problems we ALL have with our rv’s. His 2015 Montana was no different.

This is for my buddy, Pat
Remember us trying to capture these vases on camera?
I only got one today!
While he was visiting, Bill got a text that the resolve for the turbo issue was an easy one and that it was covered under warranty! Well, things are looking up! We were expecting the worst and this wasn’t the case, TG again. Travis said he would text again when it was ready. We carried on visiting, laughing and telling stories from home and around here regarding the virus, the store shortages, crossing border issues and at 4:50 the second text came in.

Our turn off
arilynne called during our HH expressing concern over our health and safety. It sounded like a sincere ‘shouldn’t you be coming home?’ Bill chatted with her and put her mind at ease that we are fine and will take all the precautions from here on in. I hope she feels better after talking to him about our situation.

Our park greeter posed for me

And then had to show me her pretty side
Little snob!
Owl Cafe
something weird about this 
Ken drove Bill back to get Black Beauty and I came in to see what concoction I could make for supper. I had an idea now that we had plugins. We had some Italian meatballs in the freezer to be eaten so instead of following an oven meatball casserole recipe, I made one up out of my head that I would attempt in Madame IP.

Rich Ford sure treated us well
They got a good review later
that is the second awesome Ford experience we've had in the s/w
We’ll see, you may get a different report at the end of this meal prep than you’ve ever seen before. First, I added a cup of water to the IP. I added oil to my inner pot, then meatballs, then marinara sauce, then chopped celery, peppers, onions, more sauce, broken up spaghetti noodles and mozzarella cheese on top. Was Bill ready for this meal? We’ll find out! He returned around 6 from town. Thanks, Ken, for the lift, again!

And then there were Four - three, you know what I mean!

See? Four of us - oh, forget it!
I thought this would be a quick supper but the first 10 minutes + NR wasn’t enough. The second 7 minutes + MR wasn’t enough so finally, the 3rd and last try worked. It was for 15 minutes with MR. The spaghetti was cooked and so were the veggies. Bill and I both enjoyed it but it was 7 o’clock before we were eating.

Before cooking

After 1st attempt at cooking but noodles and veggies weren't soft

Looks like a simple spaghetti and meatball dish
but it was delicious all the same!
 It was more like spaghetti and meatballs with a few veggies thrown in. LOL If I had done it in the big pot, it would have cooked faster but I was concerned about having enough liquid. Anyway, it was yummy and there is a bit leftover for me! We had Cherry creamy Jell-o for dessert.

We did the dishes and I walked outside to get a picture of where we are. It’s too dark for any others so that will wait for my morning walk. You can bet I’ll be having one! It is a nice trail here, maybe you’ll remember it from our visit last year. This was a much better day as far as our travel and upsets. There were none! We missed Keith at Happy Hour but we did hear that he had a very long driving day (which he wanted) and has settled in Clinton, OK. We have had a good time with him and Oreo this winter.
We're settled here for a couple of nights
and Black Beauty is smiling again
Good night everyone!

Thank you for stopping by!


  1. We have to be home by March 23rd as our medical coverage is being cancelled as of that date ... of course if the roads or something else prevents us from getting back to Canada by the 23rd they will still cover us. It appears that is the situation with most Canadians and their extra health care coverage. We get our coverage through my pension but I did receive an email from the Canadian Snowbird Association and they have not set a limit on their coverage. I hope you have a fun and safe trip home :-)

    1. We have checked and our coverage is fine as long as it is an existing policy, which of course it is, but we are still making tracks home.
      Safe travels!

  2. I've heard about those turbo clamps breaking. I might just buy an extra one to keep on hand.
    Wow, reading Stacie's comment above. WTH!! I have our travel insurance with CSA so I guess we're good.
    Hope the rest of your travels are uneventful.
    Travel safe. (We start heading home on Sunday)

    1. Not a bad idea, Dave, about the extra clamp.
      Ours is good but not a bad idea for us to put a push on anyway.
      Thank you, you take care and travel safely and healthily. :)

  3. Catching up, beautiful pictures of the Grand Canyon and Winslow. Plus the pictures of the drive are wonderful. Even with some glitches it sounds like you are having a wonderful time. Glad to read this last bump in the road with Black Beauty was an easy fix and hearing the words, under warranty is always nice. Continued safe travels.

    1. Thank you, easy scenery for getting good pictures. :)
      We've overcome but don't want to push our luck! Time to head home at a faster pace.

  4. As always, dinner looks yummy. Glad Black Beauty is feeling better!! If you're looking for something to do, the Albuquerque zoo is pretty spectacular. They have tons of flower gardens surrounding it.

    1. Thanks Nancy. BB is certainly happy!
      Thinking we'll push on sooner than later here with the news back home but there will always be another time for the zoo. :)

  5. That is a huge relief I'm sure, having BB taken care of so quickly and under warranty.

    I do know I've heard that the US is considering closing the border to Canada, but I'm positive that Canadian citizen and permanent residents will be permitted to cross. The caveat is that they cannot be symptomatic. I'm sure you'll be fine!

    1. Yes, it is a relief. :)
      It is true about the border and also true that we won't have a problem getting in. :)

  6. Nothing beats a Ford! Glad everything turned out with BB. Now you two can relax and enjoy your journey home. Enjoy the Albuquerque area.

    1. thanks Doug. Didn't stick around enough to explore it this time.

  7. How nice it was covered under warranty!! YAY! Don't hurry home, they are going to let you in! I hate all this hype! geez!! The world is crazy in our opinion! Dinner looks like the perfect comfort food!! YUM!