Reminded once again

Early this morning the crew and I drive up to Flagstaff. 

I want to pick up a few things at the Wal-Mart Supercenter, including some water.  It’s a cloudy, cold day so the thought of riding in the PTV with the heater on is very appealing.  Bridget and Spike like the idea, too, and are happy to hop up onto the bench seat.

This Wal-Mart has more landscaping than many towns.

Every light post has a sign “No overnight parking” with a graphic of a tow truck.  I spy a trash receptacle in the parking lot so I put the PTV right next to it.  I’ve got a lot of trash and in it goes, out of my life!  Thank you, Wal-Mart!

As I’m getting my purse out of the PTV, a lady who looks to be in her forties walks by. 

“Hi!  What’s that on top of your van?” she asks.

“Oh, that’s a solar panel.”

Before I can explain, she inquires further.

“What’s it for?  So you can heat the inside?”

I explain that I have a travel trailer and the solar panel charges up my batteries so I can have lights and stuff.

She nods her head approvingly.

“Very smart. Very smart.”  As she walks away I think our conversation is over, until she stops and speaks up one more time.

“Say, would you be able to spare a dollar for the bus?”

“Sure, let me see.  I look in my wallet and all I have is a twenty dollar bill.  My change purse is almost full, probably a couple of dollars.

“How’s this?  There should be enough here.”  I pour the change into her hand.

She thanks me and walks off.

Gee, I didn’t see that coming.  Once again I’m reminded how very fortunate I am.

Another day comes to a close at Willard Springs, Arizona



About rvsueandcrew

Fulltime nomad
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35 Responses to Reminded once again

  1. tinycamper says:

    We are so blessed, Sue. A couple of the women van dwellers have recently had to ask for donations on their blogs for gas and tire money.

    There are a lot of con artists out there, but I would rather be scammed than to turn down someone who truly needed help. Glad you helped her.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Oh, no. How terrible for our fellow travelers. I will do a search for them.

      You know how it is. You end up having the same ol’ conversation with yourself . . . Maybe I should have given her more. No, she’s probably gonna spend it on wine. So what if she spends it on wine. No, you don’t want to encourage panhandling. What if she’s hungry? I should have given her more, etc. etc. …. And then I walk into Wal-Mart and spend $5.98 on chew bones for the crew.

      • kellyceallaigh says:

        But you treated her with dignity but not offering more than what she was asking for. Maybe she actually just needed money for bus fare and to offer more would’ve been insulting. This way, she can feel like you believed exactly what she told you. It’s so difficult to know these days but don’t second-guess yourself. And the crew deserves their chew bones!!

      • Elizabeth says:

        I read someplace that one solution to giving out money, would be to get those gift cards that places like McDonalds, Wendy’s, etc sell…and each one is worth a buck or so. And at least they won’t be able to use it for booze (being most restaurants sell that today, unfortunately one would have to give them from places that do not sell very healthy stuff…though if one wants to, most places at least sell salads, etc.)

        Hubby and I are always the ones approached (sometimes out of a crowd of people) if someone is asking for help. But sometimes we have felt impressed by GOD to go help someone who did not ask either. You know, if ever we need help in the future, I would hope that we would be people that others would help too!! I am not sure what it is about us as to how we look that makes people feel free to approach us.

        I was wondering what you do when you must shop and it is too hot for the doggies inside your van? I was glad to hear it was actually cold this time!!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          About shopping with the crew in the PTV…. First of all, I try to stay out of hot places, although I haven’t been very good at that so far.

          The solution is to shop really early in the day, shop quickly, make more trips to the store for shorter visits. Fortunately the PTV is fully upholstered so it doesnt’ heat up the way a regular cargo van does. I’ve never come back to the PTV and found it uncomfortably hot. I leave a dish of water in the van while I’m gone.

          • hobopals says:

            When it isn’t too hot, I use my 12 volt fan made by Fantastic Fan. I made a platform for it, open the back window of the truck and open the side windows and it keeps the truck nice and cool–blows plenty of air. I generally stay out of hot weather, too, but the few times I’ve been “caught”, I wear an extra truck key around my neck, leave the truck running with the air on, and lock the doors. Of course, this is just to run in and out of a place. With diesel prices as they are, now, I try everything to avoid leaving the truck running. Kids you can take with you, but it is a problem when you’re alone with pup(s).

  2. kellyceallaigh says:

    You’re a very kind person. No matter what she used it for, you blessed her and yourself by treating her as a worthy person.

    I love looking at your current camping spot. It was almost 90 degrees in my part of PA today and I am feeling so ready for camping! Your campfire photo yesterday was also quite awesome. Enjoy!

  3. Pat says:

    Sometimes we forget how lucky we are. Some of us are very lucky.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      My blessings are too many to count. I hope yours are, too, Pat.

      • Pat says:

        I have been blessed with good friends and to me that is what matters. Plus I hope to make many more friends when I start my travels. I believe that if we help others and are true friends we will be rewarded.

  4. cathieok says:

    Gee, when I first read how she was talking to you, I was a little surprised that a woman would be asking these questions. Really hope she was interested and not just striking up a conversation for the hand out. Don’t get me wrong, I believe in helping people who need a little help.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      She didn’t seem like a hardcore panhandler. The conversation may have been a way for her to scope me out and to help her ask the question.

  5. Chinle says:

    Thanks for helping her. When I was 18, a bunch of us decided to go from Colorado to California. We ran out of gas money in downtown Sacramento (crazy kids, driving an old van that needed timing). I asked a woman coming out of the capitol building in a suit for $5 for gas. It was very humiliating, even as a kid. She was so kind, talked to me awhile, then handed me $100, saying, always help your fellow human, pass it forward when you can.

    You have no idea what an impression that made on me. I have passed it forward every chance I got from then on. You did good. 🙂

  6. geogypsy2u says:

    Seems every time I visit Flagstaff at least one person asks for money and I too pass on all my pocket change.

  7. dave says:

    Every time someone comes and asks for for money because they are hungry I offer to buy them a sandwich, no a single time has anyone taken me up on the offer. They just want the cash. Same goes for gas, bus, etc.. They all just want the cash .

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I look at it this way . . . I’m glad I’m not in a position where I have to ask for cash from a stranger whether it be from poor choices, bad luck, victimhood, or addictions. It would be interesting to see where the money goes, not that it’s any of my business. A gift is a gift.

      I can see where you’d be turned away from giving to people who only want cash. Makes you wonder . . .

  8. Sharon says:

    I was always taught….”But for the grace of GOD, go I”. Who knows how many ‘angels unaware’ that one has helped over time, and I like the ‘pay it forward’ concept. I was in a convenience store a couple of months ago, in line, and the fellow in front had gotten a few items, but after pouring out all of his change, still didn’t have enuf for the soda and crackers. I told the clerk, “I’ll take care of it.” He looked at me in the strangest way. I said, “I might need help someday.” It was under a dollar, but I’ll never forget the look he gave me. Oh, and I’ve seen people not have enuf money and put stuff aside, except for the cigarettes. I won’t help them.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I know I’ll never forget the time I left my pocketbook at work. On the way home I had to get gas. The store clerk wouldn’t help me out, but a customer did, paid for $3 worth which, in those days, got me home. Now I’d hardly get out on the road. Ha!

  9. Harriet says:

    Hi Sue, great blog. Question how do you keep your crew from running away in the wilderness. I am seriously, planning to RV in the near furture. I have an Italian Greyhound who is my best bud. I want to take him with me. Although I see many rvings with dogs I am afraid he will bolt and I will never find him. How do you train them to stay with you or at least close to you with out a lead? Thanks love the pics of the crew.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello, Harriet,

      It’s simple with the crew. They both know where the food dish is and who fills it. I’ve never given them any kind of training other than that. Spike is very stubborn. It would take intensive training to make him obedient. Bridget is naturally compliant and clingy.

      Seriously . . . I appreciate your concern. Every dog and every breed is different. I would hesitate to let a hunting dog off-leash, for example, due to their obsession once they pick up a scent and start following it.

      I would keep your Ital. GH on a leash when you start RVing.. Don’t let him off-leash until you are in an area with wide-open spaces where you can watch him. I think our frequent walks on-leash have trained the crew to stick close. The threat of coyotes is ever-present so I don’t let them off-leash as much as my photos may make it appear.

      Not a very definitive answer . .

    • Ed says:

      I would suggest that you train to dog to respond to the Come Command. That and feeding your ‘best bud’ should keep him close.
      My dog ‘lost’ me a couple of times when I first turned her loose off leash and was so Happy when she found me again that she now checks on me quite often. If she looses sight of me she starts looking, she has also stayed closer to me than at first.

  10. Kim says:

    So true, Sue! A good reminder that everyday we have so much to be grateful for. I’ve continued following along on your adventures. I have to get my Bridget photo fix. She cracks me up!

    I just wanted to thank you for your touching comments on my blog. Isn’t it amazing how powerful is
    the support from those you’ve never even met? BTW, I’m looking at a faculty job in Flagstaff – I’ve been there twice and liked it a lot. How cool to be that close to that big ol’ hole in the earth. Can’t wait to read your report on that!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Kim! So nice to have you back with us! Bridget’s still here and still fat.

      I wish you well with your job search wherever it may take you. Enjoy each day . ..

  11. Sherry says:

    Just love the picture of your rig set up there amid the shelter of the trees. It looks so restful and cool. Stuck here in 90 degree heat with the bugs ever on the increase. Not so great but reading your blog makes me dream of cooler spots. Thanks.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Sherry. One of the many things I’ve come to love about the SW is the absence of fleas, tics, and flying bugs.

      I put the rig under these trees mainly to get up on higher ground with a floor of pine needles so we’re less likely to get mired in mud. Then I wondered about sap from the pines getting on the roof of the BLT. So far no problem.

      Glad you enjoy the blog.

  12. Judie says:

    Ok, so now I’m really convinced…no fleas, ticks or flying bugs???? Lucky girl!. lol Sounds like the perfect place for us. We have those lovely mosquitoes here and they simply adore my husband. They get me every now and then but he’s their main entree. lol Good for u helping the lady. I’ve been warned against it by several different folks but I always figure…what if it were Jesus? Once it leaves my hand for the right reason then it becomes between them and God what happens after that. None of us never know when we’ll need help…especially in today’s economy.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re absolutely right, Judie. Most of us are a minute away from being desitute. We just don’t know it. The economic events of the past decade made a lot of people realize that no matter how wise you think you are with your money, it can disappear in a flash.

      Sometimes I’m generous and other times not so much. I go with my gut feeling (the gentle prodding of God?) and do what seems right at the time. You never know. I don’t dislike people who have their hand out. I wouldn’t want to trade places with them and their biggest crime may simply be mental illness.

      So far, so good on the bugs. Of course, we haven’t been near much water.

  13. Lacy says:

    Well unknown to you until now, I have spent the past 2+ days reading your blog from beginning until now. And I’ve enjoyed it SO MUCH! It always amazes me how people take the time to put their lives in writing and share it w/ others. THANK YOU for doing that! We’re ‘campers’, still raising teens. Maybe that’s why I enjoy reading blogs like yours? – I’m dreaming of the day when we can scoot off when and where we want!
    Something that I’ve enjoyed so much while reading ‘you’ is that you never complain. Often, it surprises me how people complain about what other people are doing around them (too loud, too busy, too many, laughing too loud across the campground……..geez people, get over yourselves!) Anyway, I’ve enjoyed ‘getting to know you’ and the crew. And while you might think you have little to say, I’m loving learning how and why you do things. Keep up the good work!!! (and kisses and kibbles to the crew)

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Lacy!

      Welcome to my blog. I didn’t know who was reading from the beginning up to today, but I could tell from my admin. page that someone was. That tickles me so much, that someone would take the time to read all the stuff I’ve put here for the past year. Thanks for the compliment.

      Oh, I do complain. I keep it to a low mumble. I try not to do that too much on my blog! Nobody likes to read that.

      I hope you continue to love learning from my simple, ordinary days. When things go wrong and/or I make mistakes, it’s nice to know, at least, that someone might be learning from it. Best wishes . . .from me and the crew.

  14. earthdancerimages says:

    Thank You Sue, for being you! One thing I believe in, what goes around comes around! Helping when you can is just the right thing to do. Period!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri,

      BTW, my sister Pauline still has trouble like you do when trying to comment using her name. I notified WordPress and they said it was because they changed something having to do with the log in procedure. (WordPress likes to fix what works.) So now, if you have a Gravatar log in, it is the same thing as a WordPress log in. You’ve got to use the same password…. I don’t know. It’s messed up.

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