Still loving this desert living

Wednesday, January 30

1-P1020196 On our walk this morning the crew and I meet a reader of this blog!  Sunny arrived Tuesday with her crew, Izzy and Captain Curly.   We continue our walks together.

Sunny has to remind me (because I can’t keep straight who said what in a comment) that she’s originally from Pennsylvania, later from Kentucky, and now from wherever her pretty Winnebago takes her.

It’s fun introducing someone to the Sonoran Desert.  As an artist, she’s curious about the different plants, and immediately appreciates the beauty of the desert.

I decide to move our camp closer to Bill and Ann.

We email back and forth and visit each other’s campsites, but somehow it isn’t as good as being nearby.  We can hang out together on a whim.  I’m never with them that we don’t share some laughs, and Spike and Bridget are pals with their canine crew.  They’ll be leaving in a few days and who knows when we will see each other again.  Our new camp is across the road from theirs.1-P1020213

The crew and I hang out at Bill and Ann’s campsite while Ann finishes her stained glass window.  I think it’s one of her best.  Before we know it, the sun is low in the sky.  I need to finish setting up our new camp before dark!

Isn’t it lovely? 

Not only do we have a great view of Black Mountain, the surrounding terrain has several places where Bridget and Spike can be walked on soft ground.  I check my Verizon air card and see one bar.  After hooking up the antenna, I get three bars!

Thursday, January 31

First thing this morning, the crew and I set out on a “power walk.”  That’s a walk where we hustle our behinds down the road the fastest we can go without jogging.  The exercise is good for all three of us.

Some mornings, usually at a new camp, Spike is wound up so tight that he is, quite frankly, an obnoxious inhabitant of our 17-foot home.  Whining, fussing, in and out the door, never happy until he works off the energy.


We discover a very wide wash that looks, judging from the tracks, like a highway for javelinas, coyotes, and four-wheelers.


It turns out this is the longest walk Bridget has accomplished since her injury.  She didn’t hitch up her back leg until we were almost home.

I’ve got mail!

We check the Ajo post office general delivery.  The postal clerk hands us two packages, the bank checks I ordered, and the package of mail sent by my mail forwarding company.  I sit in the Perfect Tow Vehicle and hold my breath for a moment as I open up the package of mail. 

If there’s a problem, it’s most likely to show up in the snail mail.

Let’s see . . . New vehicle insurance cards from GEICO, good.  New health insurance cards, good.  Junk . . . junk . . .   more junk.  Notice that pension has gone up for 2013, laughable.  Notice that Social Security has gone up for 2013, laughable.  Letter from health insurance, premiums up, no surprise. 

Uh-oh . . . What’s this?  From the Pennington County Courthouse, Rapid City, South Dakota . . . Oh nooooo!  Jury duty!

I scan the document quickly and see the duty is for March.

I vaguely remember that my mail forwarding/legal address company, Americas Mailbox, can help a person assigned jury duty at a courthouse that’s a thousand miles away.

The bumper mount instructions have been revised.

Make sure you have this latest version if you plan on setting up the Wilson directional antenna on a post on your bumper.  If this is your first visit to rvsue and her canine crew, I’m referring to “For Better Internet” accessed through the header.  Oh, and also, if this is your first visit to my blog, where the heck have you been?

And no, that green thing sticking up above the door of the Best Little Trailer is not my Wilson antenna!




About rvsueandcrew

Fulltime nomad
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84 Responses to Still loving this desert living

  1. Timber n' me says:

    Neet, Our first time out th’ gate,Sue,,,,,,What a beuitifull spot to camp,,,,,,,,Timber sess Hi to th’ pups,,,,,,,,,,see ya

  2. hunter1155 says:

    After reading how much you love the desert I am reminded of our stay in New Mexico. The blowing sand was so bad we both got sinus infections and had to get out of there really quick. Maybe your desert is not so windy. It sure looks pretty.
    Ruth from At Home on the Road

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I guess desert anywhere is windy. Here in the Sonoran the wind is slowed by the mountains, many different levels to the landscape, and vegetation. There are a lot of small rocks on the ground, and the sand is coarse. It would take a lot of wind to blow the sand here.

  3. Danielle says:

    Nice campsite! I so love the desert. The sunsets are the best.

    My husband and I just went on a hike today in the Arizona desert, saw an old homestead with a pile of old rusted tin cans pitched into a nearby wash (guess they weren’t too into recycling back then) and some old Native American rock art. The scenery looked almost exactly like what’s in your pictures!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Danielle,

      I see the old rusted cans around here, too. Not too many, mostly broken bottles. I’m happy you and your husband have the chance to hike the desert you love.

  4. Carol L says:

    Looks like your home is happy to be there!

  5. Kim says:

    I love it here too. Just watched a glorious sunset over the Chihuanhuan Desert. Yay for Bridget!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Kim,

      You know, Bridget is a real trooper. She’s had a long recovery period.

      I plan on visiting the Chihuanhuan once of these days. I’m glad you’re loving the desert your in.

  6. Pat says:

    Hope there is room that area for one more……lol. I will heading over there Monday.

    Pat in Ajo

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I was thinking of you today, Pat, and your move. I’ll email you before Monday and you can tell me about what time you’ll be out here so I can meet you. Also what rig you have. It is filing up but we can always find room for one more. I assume you’ll want internet. The closer you park to the front of the area (not going back in as far), the better chance you have of picking up a signal.

  7. Nan says:

    I too love the desert, but please add mountains or foothills closeby! We did find a beautiful spot between 95 and Bouse on Palmara (sp) Road. Ohhh my. Camp up on the foothills overlooking the valley. Mile marker 11, 12 and 13! Breathtaking!

  8. geogypsy2u says:

    All my insurances went up, unfortunately my income didn’t. Good thing you know how to live on less. Fun to have neighbors once in a while and there’s no bad views out there.

  9. TXBX says:

    I just ordered this (“KitchenAid KSM152PSNK Custom Metallic Series 5-Quart Mixer, Brushed Nickel”) for my DIL’s birthday, and went through your website to do it. I purchased it today at 12:30 Texas time, ….. and I paid an extra $3.99 for speedy shipping, ……. so it shipped today, and you might be able to track your %age by that information! Maybe will give you some idea about how it works, and how soon it works!! ………. Thanks for the beautiful view of the desert today!!!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks so much for shopping through my link! A purchase doesn’t show up on the Orders Report until the day after the purchase.

      Glad to share my desert view with you!

  10. jean/Southaven, ms says:

    I lived in Tuscan for awhile. the Sonora Desert is the best. Janet Dailey wrote some good books about the Sonora Desert many years ago? so glad Bridget is doing so much better. Maybe by summer she will be 100 percent again. hope you can get out of the jury duty. March in South Dekota can cold and bad. To say nothing about a long way away.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Jean,

      I figure a slow recovery/rehabilitation time for Bridget is a good thing. Right now at our new camp, the doorstep is higher than usual, so I’m lifting her in and out of the BLT. With her chubby body on spindly legs, I’ll always have to take extra care that she doesn’t jump up or down too high, or sprint and make a tear like she did before chasing that chipmunk.

      I can’t imagine being forced to drive 1,000 miles to sit in a courtroom and possibly not even be needed. I’m counting on my mail service telling me what I should do. That’s a problem for tomorrow!

      • cinandjules (NY) says:

        If you HAVE to be present for jury duty…you can see if they will “excuse” you for a period of time…usually 6 months. It should be on the summons.

        Oh look what I found: Requests to be excused.
        When jurors need to be excused for a certain period of time, the jury clerks will make every effort to assist. It is very important that the jurors make the request to be excused in advance. You can contact the Clerk’s Office in writing, by phone or by email. Last minute requests can cause great inconvenience for the juror and for our office and result in a shortage or jurors reporting. Untimely requests sometimes are not granted, unless the need is a definite emergency.

  11. cinandjules (NY) says:

    Enjoy your company before they leave. What?? No pics of Ann’s best stain glass?
    Jury duty..bleh! …….so how exactly does Americas mailbox can assist you? We haven’t been “found” for jury duty (knock on wood..twice. ) In Calee we were sent summons…but we were exempt. Hope that works here.
    Love the cactus antenna! Glad to hear Bridget is doing well and it doesn’t appear she needs to have surgery. Does she miss the rides in her stroller?

    55 degrees and it rained all day yesterday. Today we woke to lake effect blizzard conditions 50mph gusts..still snowing as we speak….a foot of far….can’t wait to shovel tomorrow!

    Enjoy your evening.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Seems like I feel a chill every time I read your comments lately. 🙂

      I didn’t take a pic of the stained glass because it’s a custom piece, made to order, and the customer should see it first, right?

      I don’t think Bridget misses the stroller. I was fussing around with stuff through the back doors of the PTV and took out the stroller. Of course, Bridget is always next to me, my little shadow. She didn’t act like she wanted to get in it. She probably associates it with a painful time in her life.

  12. Lacy says:

    Can’t wait to hear how you get out of jury duty! And I’m with you, if this is the first time someone has visited your site, WHERE THE HECK HAVE THEY BEEN?
    Still loving your adventures almost as much as you are!

  13. kristine barr says:

    Do you really have to serve the jury duty? You don’t really go to s dakota a that much. Seems like you’re not really a jury of peers.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      My plan is to go to South Dakota once every five years to renew my driver’s license. I was just up there last summer! At this point I’m hoping that I’m not in deep doo-doo for not responding to the summons within 10 days, as required. I may end up blogging from a jail cell. 🙂

  14. Marcia GB says:

    The jury duty sounds like SD’s little joke on all those full timing RV residents. They probably take bets on how many actually report for duty! There must be an easy way out or at least postponement to a better time.
    And hooray for Bridget taking longer walks!

  15. EmilyO from KS says:

    Was reading on that SD full-time RV’ers have been told by county clerk’s to write “full-time RVr” on their summons and return to that county clerk. Most of them called the office first. Was mentioned that they are very lenient – sounds like compared to California.

  16. Gayle says:

    Never thought I’d see the day that you would say the words; “We can hang out together on a whim.” !!! Confirms my belief that Rvers are the nicest community of people possible! I can’t wait to get out there.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I have met some fine people since hitting the road.

    • Jack says:

      Not always my friend! It would be a mistake to assume everyone wants to meet and talk with you.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        You’re right, Jack. Never make that assumption. Meet a person only if it occurs naturally, in passing. Read body language. Let the other person take the lead. etc. However, if I need to obtain info about a boondocking area, for instance, I look for someone who is out and about (no knocking on doors!!!) and who returns pleasant eye contact. Then I make sure I’m very polite and very brief.

  17. Connie & Mugsy says:

    Twice I’ve been called for jury duty. The first time was Virginia in 1998, but I was in Kuwait. My neighbor, who had been checking my mail, just called them and told them that I was out of the country and wouldn’t be back for a year. They said fine and that was that. Then about 4 years ago I got the letter from North Dakota and I was already in Arizona for the winter. I just called the number and told them that I was south for the winter. They said OK… and never heard from them again. It isn’t a big deal. Just be sure to call them tomorrow and tell them you are south for the winter. They get the whole snowbird thing… and I’ve never heard of any state expecting people to return just for jury duty.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      It goes against common sense to expect people to travel across the country for jury duty. Thanks for sharing your experiences.

      • Timber n' me says:

        Hi Sue, remember wen I told you that I got a jury duty letter from La Paze Co.? I had the folks at th’ UPS store where I get my mail to write for me on th’ sumons that I’m gone from late March til late October n’ mail it to them and they also sent a besness card with it,,,,I havn’t herd a word from them since,,,,,,,”,Well that must be that ol’ guy n’ his dog in that camo truck”, they’er thinking, right,,,,,,,,,,,

  18. Cathy S says:

    We have been enjoying the Sonora desert too and have to agree with you on it’s beauty. Santa Catalina mountains of Tucson and now Gila Bend…this time of year the temps are perfect. Looking forward to the desert spring coming soon!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Cathy,

      And there are so many places to discover! It’s great to hear about another person enjoying the desert and the warm weather (although this morning is chilly!).

  19. Rattlesnake Joe says:

    When RVing in Apache Territory it is best to circle the wagons when camping. Make your fires during the day and keep ’em small with no smoke. It won’t do any good to try and cover your tracks, just try and sneak through being as quite and unobtrusive as possible. If your spotted they will usually make themselves seen on the horizon. This is telling you that it is no good trying to run, so just run up a white flag, put the guns away and lumber along. They will meet you in their own time and place and will parley if you are not at war with them at the moment. You can usually trade with them for your lives by giving them good horses and eats. They like telescopes and binoculars but don’t try and give them trinkets. That’s an insult. Don’t hide your guns but try not to trade your guns away too. Have one man as spokesman for your wagon train to deal with them. Keep your dogs tied to the wagon wheels. They like to eat dogs so go ahead and give them the best horses and eats right off. They will usually take the goods and leave you alone if you treat them fairly. Try not to give them any whiskey but it is only polite to have your leader offer them a drink but make sure that its a small bottle and not a jug. They might offer your leader a drink of Tizwiz and if so he should drink a gulp as it is not bad for Indian corn liquor. Remember that they are usually not in any hurry, so don’t you try and hurry them along. Treat them as guests and remember you are in their home land and you were not invited. Black mountain is secred ground and they won’t usually bother you but stay off the mountain. If you look close you will see an Indian head in profile on the horizon.

    • Timber n' me says:

      LOL LOL LOL ahhoooooo gaaa,,,,,,wash staa ,,,,kimo sabeeee

      • Rattlesnake Joe says:

        Same to you my friend…Ho

      • Gayle says:

        Rattlesnake Joe, thanks for the heads-up, so to speak, on the Indian head on the mtn. (Wasn’t there a book, The Indianhead, by Ayn Rand? LOL I don’t blame the Indians for not falling for the ol’ beads-for-Manhattan trick again.

        • Rattlesnake Joe says:

          You have a keen eye my Sister, I give you the Indian name of Eagle Eye. Long ago the Spainards came and built treasure monuments on the sky line to help find the mines and treasure spots of the old west. You can still see them today if you know what to look for. Congratulations your Indian Head sign means ” Indians ahead, and or look where I am looking and be on guard. Also to go to the monument and look for other Spanish Treasure Signs to follow” ho.

  20. Jack says:

    Sue, Seems you have answered your own question concerning why some Rvers like to park in the vicinity of others. Lov your blog!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Jack!

      Let me make the situation clear for everyone, in case people think I’m suddenly wanting to join the crowd. I do not want to park in a cluster with people I’ve never met. I don’t even want to park in a cluster with people I’m briefly acquainted with. I don’t even want to park next to my personal friends, like Bill and Ann, whom I love to be with!

      They invited me to park in a site next to them. I chose, instead, to park way across the road. I like my space and I like to give other RVers their space.

  21. G says:

    RVSue, quick question. Why the need for checks? I have had the same checkbook for about 10 years now. I think I use maybe one a year. Between internet banking, cash and debit card, I find no need for them.
    I want to prepare myself for FT’ing so just wondering if I have missed something here.
    Thanks and keep up your great blog!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’ve found that a lot of the inexpensive national forest campgrounds collect fees via a self-pay station. You write your name, license plate number, senior pass number, and such on an envelope. Inside you put your fee. Very early on I learned the importance of having checks. The fee was six bucks, I think. The lowest denomination of cash I had was a twenty. I was only going to stay one night and no one was around. No camp host to make change (and that isn’t their job anyway). No scanner for a debit card. I wrote a check for $6.

      I prefer writing a check when buying propane. There isn’t always a scanner for a debit card, the person isn’t fumbling around in the wind trying to make change, and I remember to jot down the amount for my records (and for this blog).

      When my checks ran out, I had to make sure I had small bills and it’s just one more thing to remember. Everyone finds what works best for them, and I find checks are handy. Propane and camp fees … everything else is online or by card.

    • Ed says:

      I use my Credit Card for all the purchases that I can but there are some RV Parks (Escapees for example) that want cash or check. I am not going to carry around enough cash to pay for a month in a Park so I use checks.

  22. Ky G says:

    OK_how much water do you carry in? I will be rambling about June or so_hopefully sooner and taking my youngest son with me, my SD and cat. He has Tourettes and comorbid aspects and after rearing my last on a boat i think the best thing for him is to leave this life of ease and head out into the open air to get out of his skin as best he can (by “ease” i mean roof always provided, food always here, electronics, etc) I think the best thing for him is to be in the open, find his tribe, lower his anxiety and swing his arms towards the sun. He will be 19 by the time we head out.
    Also_how are your dogs paws holding up? I have had three dogs reared in the tropics but this one has tender feet despite the trails we romp. Salt is a killer and we have that remedied. Have tried RuffWears gor trek boots but they leave his dew claw in blisters. Cant afford for my SD to get another injured paw. Any suggestions on dog paws 🙂 ❤ Bingo is an Aussie/Border
    Will be van dwelling so no big amenities here . Tring to keep it as simple as possible
    Will later ask you info on tires and what you use for type/grade and whether you have added a transmission cooler. Yep_lots of quiestions.
    Thank you for the morning read.
    You and Pirate radio go well together ❤
    ~Ky and BIngo

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello, Ky! I’ll try to answer… If I miss something, feel free to ask again.

      Bridget and Spike both have tough paws. A few posts back in comments we discussed Bag Balm and some other products good for tender paws and human skin. I don’t have any experience with boots on dogs.

      I fill my water tank with potable water spigots and use it for flushing and for the bathroom sink. I have 8-10 one-gallon jugs at any given time. I fill these at water vending machines. This water is for coffee, preparing food, the crew’s dish, and for bathing. (That last may seem weird. I bathe out of a dishpan designated for that purpose and pouring water from jugs is easier than from my tiny sinks.)

      This system works well for me because my water tank empties about the same time my waste tanks need to be dumped… Two tasks are handled in one trip.

      I have not added a transmission cooler. A trusted mechanic where I once lived told me I didn’t need one for my PTV (Chevy Express van). So far he’s been correct.

      PTV 15-in. tubeless Uniroyal. Tread plies are 2 polyester + 2 steel + 1 nylon and sidewalls polyester/ 2271 lbs. max. load. These were on the van when I bought it used. They’re holding tread well. One slow leak caused by a nail.

      BLT’s are 15-in. Goodyear Marathons original to the Casita.

      Hope this is what you were looking for. Best wishes to you and your son!

    • rvsueandcrew says:


      I added a link for Bag Balm on the “For your crew’ page under “Shopping List and Links” in the header. I also put a link for Musher’s Secret (for dogs who won’t wear booties) which is highly recommended by Amazon customers.

  23. amanda says:

    Hi Sue
    It looks like we’re camped just on the other side of the wash from you! We’re the shiny airstream you might be able to see through the foliage. We’ve been here since last Sunday and love, love, love the scenery around here. Hopefully we’ll see you around. Stop by for a visit if you want.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Amanda!

      I thought that Airstream was Tom and Carolyn whom I met at Ogilby Road. Are you part of their family or are there two Airstreams? 🙂

      Yes, it is beautiful here. I took some photos last night of Black Mountain in the light of the setting sun…

  24. Leigh says:

    Haha – I see Amanda beat me to it. Hi Sue – I’m in the other Airstream, not Tom & Carolyn!

    • Bill and Ann says:

      Hi from across the wash, Leigh and Amanda. There are alot of trailers out there today. It must be a good weekend for camping and ATVing. Sue is behind a bush, but those Airstreams sure reflect the morning sun. They are sort of pretty.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Gee, we’re being overrun by Airstreams. 🙂 Hello, Leigh . . . welcome to the neighborhood!

  25. Bob Lowry says:

    I’m sitting at Belly Acres RV Park just a few miles from you all. The weather is perfect for the Fiddler’s Competition this weekend in Ajo.

  26. Rita from Phoenix says:

    Nice to see all the chit chat from friends and acquaintances….sounds like a long established neighborhood you all. Enjoy each other’s company for we live on borrowed time and must make the most of it.

  27. AZ Jim says:

    One good advantage to having neighbors within a reasonable distance is security. Evil doers think twice when they are confronted with more than just one lone camper. I was camped alone in a very remote area years ago when all of a sudden stranger was right outside my RV. He was dressed like he needed a change of clothes and bath badly. I happened to be a short distance away. I noticed this man had a big knife on his belt. I approached him and spoke, he said he was just looking around. I asked where his vehicle was (we were in the middle of nowhere, AZ) and he said it was a short distance up the “road” from my camp. I told him I needed to turn off my stove and when I came back out I had my gun concealed but handy. He stalled around a few minutes and finally said “he’d be moving along”. I thought then it was mighty suspicious. That night I was wary. In those days there were no cell phones so I was my own last line of defense. I began parking within eyesight of others after that. Just the other day I was behind a car with a bumper sticker that read “The driver of this vehicle is armed three days a week-You guess which days!”

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That bumper sticker is funny. I wonder how much the ubiquitous cell phone has affected criminal behavior of the sort you almost encountered. Troublemakers can expect everyone to have one, not to mention a firearm.

      That must’ve spooked you, alone in a remote area with a suspicious character hanging around.

      • AZ Jim says:

        You know that here in Arizona anyone who wants to can carry a concealed weapon without any permit. Of course “open carry” is legal most places, but Arizona goes one step beyond that. I was very wary that night and instead of just relaxing and enjoying the evening, I was on guard all night. BTW I changed your last “thriller” for this desert view on my desktop. I save em all so when I get bored, I change. You have a great eye for beauty, Sue.

  28. cinandjules (NY) says:

    Carrying a concealed weapon w/o a permit AND open carry? I pick concealed..personally I’d like to “surprise” em!

    We have two signs on our bunkhouse (the first structure you come to on the way into our property) “No trespassing…trespassers will be shot..survivors will be shot again.” “Anything I own…isn’t worth your life.” We also have a driveway alert…that lets us know someone is walking/driving in.

    Ya gotta be really stupid to creep up on us! heh heh

    NY gun laws are horrible……………………AZ is sounding more and more appealing.

  29. carol says:

    hubby needs new binoculars, when I “Googled” binocs Amazon came up first, so I says to me, Sue and baked away.I’ll wait, how do I use your site to order??

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi Carol,

      There are many ways to place an Amazon order so I get some credit. You can click on the link in the right margin right below where it says “Thank you for shopping AMAZON!” Once you’re at Amazon, anything you buy gives me some credit.

      Or you can go to “Shopping List and Links” in the header, choose a category and click on any link. For instance, you could click on the link for Bag Balm in the For your crew category. That takes you to Amazon. Then shop for your binoculars. Whatever you buy once you enter Amazon through one of my blog’s links, I’ll get credit.

      Thank you for asking, Carol, and for wanting to support my blog efforts.

  30. libertatemamo says:

    Lovely to be close to friends!!
    Regarding the Jury Duty check w/ your mail forwarder. In our SD county (Minnihaha) you can be excused from Jury Duty simply by writing “fulltime RVer” on the form and sending it back. Maybe your county has something similar?

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