Blog

Gallivanting Along The Texas Gulf Coast 

We had discussed spending some time on the Gulf Coast and had debated about whether or not to stick to the coast entirely through the states of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. Ultimately, Natchez Trace and Tupelo were on my list of would love to see, so we decided to weave our way in and out of selected coastal areas in order to accommodate those inland points of interest. In Texas, we spent time in both Corpus Christi and Galveston. 

Heading into Corpus Christi, it was a very windy drive and the weather over the next couple of days wasn’t very promising. When I checked in, I had asked the park ranger about weather prospects and she mentioned that storms tend to kind of dissolve or split and miss that area entirely – man I hope she knew what she was talking about. As we pulled up to our electric/water site, we realized the back of our travel trailer would be mere feet (8-ish) from the water’s edge…perfect! Any proximity to water is a sure fire remedy for some soul soothing serenity.

We completely lucked out during our stay and didn’t have any foul weather whatsoever. Mornings were brisk, afternoons warm and lovely (perfect for taking Caira on her walks to explore the area), and the evenings required neither a heater nor the proactive steps to avoid frozen hoses in the morning. The Gulf water isn’t very clear, so strike the turquoise images from your head, but the area was quiet and peaceful and we did see a small pod of dolphins and lots of different birds during our daily walks. We wished we could have stayed a little longer, but already had reservations at our next location. Additionally, since the site wasn’t full hookup, it does limit how many days we can go before having to empty our grey water tank. The sensor doesn’t appear to be accurate, so it’s complete guesswork to stay ahead of it!

Since Mike had dealt with the winds on our drive in, it was only fair I take my turn. I towed from Corpus Christi to our next stop in Galveston. The weather gods were with me, so it wasn’t quite as bad as what Mike had dealt with on the inbound stretch. I got us most of the way, but handed over the wheel after getting a little flustered in the home stretch by a huge swarm of sport bike motorcyclists. There had to have been a at least a few clubs riding together, and their numbers were huge. 

Upon arriving at the park that would be our home the next few days, we realized it was across the main road from the water, so no views per se. However, what this spot had going for it was the roar of gulf waves crashing along the shoreline. What it lacked in visual interest, it certainly made up for in auditory stimulation. Caira really enjoyed our twice daily walks to the beach and her off leash romps on the sand. We had one really great day weather wise, but the other two were inclement enough that it prevented us from checking out the tree sculptures and doing our planned day trip to Houston. Roads in the vicinity are prone to flooding and news reporters warned of how fraught with accidents the roadways in and around Houston were.









Advertisements

A Little Bite Of Big Bend

One of the lesser visited national parks, due to its remote location in southern Texas, is Big Bend. Big Bend had been on our itinerary since Day 1, we just weren’t sure how best to attack it given its massive coverage. Having read that it was a good 1.5 hours from Alpine, we opted to stay as close to the park as possible, allowing us an early start near the park entrance. Our camp for several nights was on the outskirts of Terlingua, known as a ghost town. There wasn’t much to do in Terlingua, but they had the basics, presumably due to being used as a base for Big Bend visitors.


Big Bend National Park covers ~1250 sq miles, and its roads end at the Rio Grande, which defines the park boundary for 118 miles and acts as the border between the US and Mexico. The park includes 5 visitor centers (several with exhibits), primitive camp sites as well as a developed area toward the center near the Chisos Mountains. We drove through the developed area as part of our exploration of the park and it included a lodge, restaurant, and amphitheater, but what caught our attention most is that the area was heavily forested compared to the remainder of the park’s arid, harsh landscape. It was a noticeable contrast both in climate as well as native flora and fauna. Fun fact: mountain lions are locally referred to as panthers, from which several areas of the park get their name (Panther Pass, Panther Junction). Mike continues to get his hopes up – and then dashed – when it comes to encounters with predators. However, I’m perfectly content to keep our Caira-girl safe and elude dangerous predators unless, of course, we’d be fortunate enough to admire them from afar. We did happen to notice a tarantula hurriedly crossing our path, but not in time to grab a photo before it scurried into the brush.

We spent approximately 8 hours traversing various parts of the park, and ended up skipping the Rio Grande overlook section altogether due to running out of time. We did manage to catch a glimpse or two of the Rio Grande in other sections of the park. Although, during our visit, it would be more appropriately named the Rio Pequeno. We’d imagined it as a raging river and were truthfully a bit disappointed at its gentle flow in the sections we saw up close (photo below). Would we return? Absolutely, though it would be a biped expedition in order to take full advantage of the hiking and kayaking sans canine restrictions.







Holiday Enchantment in Old Town Albuquerque

The longest we’ve stayed in one location this entire trip was 1 week back for Thanksgiving, and we liked having a little more “down time” around the holiday. You may find it funny that we need “down time” given that we’ve been on sabbatical since late September, but our pace has been brisk to make the most of our time/budget and it was nice to linger a little longer than normal. On that note, we’d decided to make Albuquerque our home base for Christmas. The RV park was quiet, though not deserted. The owner had a small collection of retro cars and campers that were placed throughout the property, which made it feel like even more like we were right off Route 66.

On the outskirts of town, there was a short, flat desert hike that led to some area petroglyphs. The trailhead was odd in that you had to work your way through a pretty newish suburban area and park behind an auto garage. As we headed down the trail, I couldn’t help but notice the many holes in the ground along the path. Squirrels or snakes or both? My eyes were continuously sweeping across and ahead of our path, which was fairly narrow and required a single file processional. We never did determine what type of creature called those holes home, which was fine by me. Reptiles are not amongst my many loves, and I don’t think Mike is too keen on them either.

One of two singing roads in the US (the other being in Lancaster California), Route 66 in NM has a short section that plays a portion of America The Beautiful when the rumble strips are driven over at ~45 mph. It took us two passes to maximize the amount of the song that plays, but it was a fun little known spot. How incredible would it be for each state to have singing roads and/or for the combination of those to play the entirety of a song? …Maybe a little Van Morrison or GNR. If it were up to Mike, it would probably be Van Halen. Oh the possibilities! Fun fact: There are singing roads in other parts of the world as well. At time of publication, Japan has the most singing roads. Have you visited other countries with singing roads?


Though we’ve made it a point to keep to our budget, which has a limited allowance for eating out, we’ve also made it a priority to designate that budget to cuisine that is unique to an area. In Albuquerque, we purchased a loaf of Green Chili Sourdough from a bakery across town from where we were staying. As it turned out, that particular type of loaf was typically reserved for their customers who own restaurants. Is it any wonder that a wink/smile/please from Mike resulted in us picking up a special order loaf 24 hours later? It was incredibly delicious and lasted us the week. Well worth the trouble!

For Christmas Eve, we were looking in the area for something festive and dog friendly (no easy feat) and found that Old Town Albuquerue has a huge luminaria display in the town center. It was cold – winter jacket and boots cold – which added to the festive feeling for yours truly! When we arrived and drove around a bit to park, it seemed like everyone in the vicinity had come out in droves. We wandered the old town area for an hour or so. It was beautifully lit with brown bag luminaries and red chili ristras and swags of evergreen. The distinctive smell of mesquite wood permeated the air and everyone sort of meandered about, checking out the lights and wishing each other Merry Christmas. In addition to the town center lights, many of the adjacent neighborhoods participate with luminaries or other elaborate light displays. Not knowing the area, we’d decided in advance to splurge on a rickshaw ride from Mother Road Bike Taxi…and hoped they’d let our sweet pup join in. Jake, our driver, not only gave Caira the green light, but having lived in New Mexico all his life, provided a fantastic tour experience complete with history of the area and recommendations for other treks between there and our next destination. He was also very understanding when Caira goosed him with her cold nose as we were just starting to pull out for our tour!







Spurred On By San Antonio

A visit to San Antonio had been in the works years ago but ended up getting put on hold back then. This was our time/chance to check out the area and after the solitude of Big Bend, we were excited to be in closer proximity to both San Antonio and Austin. To break up the long drive from Terlingua, we opted to do our first dry camp attempt of the trip at a Walmart in Del Rio, Texas. We’d heard that the protocol was to check with management that it was ok to spend the night, then park in whatever area they directed you toward before using the store for resupply. Getting permission was no problem, and we took the last spot in the RV parking area that was closest to a section of grass for Caira. The thought process was that the space between our RV and the grass was marked as no parking and no driving, so we could ensure quiet on at least that side. Wrong! There were several large rigs that squeezed through that section throughout the night, so we’ll grab a middle spot the next time we need to use a parking lot to grab a few winks.  It was plenty safe and well lit, but the noise just didn’t allow for high quality sleep. Live & learn! By the way, Texas has lots of picnic areas that are alongside its highways and allow for overnight parking, but since we aren’t “packing heat”, we decided we didn’t want to be that isolated.

Upon arriving at the RV park in San Antonio, we were warned to keep everything locked up and please not feed stray animals. The park looked nice enough but was more crowded than we typically prefer and the stray comment was tugging on my heartstrings immediately. Not an awesome start… As it turns out though, the park was situated right off Mission Trail and very close to the San Antonio Riverwalk. 

The Mission Trail (also known as Mission Reach) leads visitors along 8 miles of paved trail, enabling visits to 4 Spanish colonial missions. We took advantage of the fact that the grounds were pup friendly and visited 3 of those missions, taking turns seeing the interior. Check out this site for interesting details about each mission: http://visitsanantonio.com/english/Explore-San-Antonio/Only-in-San-Antonio/The-Alamo/The-San-Antonio-Missions

While I can’t say I’m a fan of forced conversion or spending fortunes on temples and places of worship, I’m a complete and unapologetic sucker for interesting architecture. Unique rooflines, wrought iron, mosaic tile, arches, intricate wood carvings, or boldly colored doors can result in my wandering a site or city for hours, camera in hand, engrossed in the angles and oblivious to the passing of time.










The Riverwalk was a great way for us to get some excercise and see a few different parts of the city at the same time. We picked up the path in a residential part of town, and followed it as it wove in and out of different sections until we wound up in a primarily business district. Along the way were platforms for river tours (non pet friendly), as well as various eateries, bars, shops, and hotels, all of which were semi concentrated in a central loop. There were plenty of quiet little tucked away nooks for solitude, but the multiuse trail was used plenty by locals and tourists alike. 




Our day trip to Austin included some time wandering the Zilker Botanical Gardens, as well as allowing Caira an off leash romp in Zilker Metropolitan Park. The Botanical Gardens were open but under renovation. A pathway meandered through various exhibits such as a rose garden, Japanese garden and tea house, koi pond and butterfly garden. In spring and summer, those gardens are likely stunning, and while still enjoyable, they didn’t hold as much color as we’d anticipated. Upside for me: fewer buzzing insects to duck/run from! One of the highlights for me was a massive wind chime that sounded hauntingly beautiful. Zilker Metropolitan Park was clearly a haven for both humans and pups alike. It boasted a fantastic view of the city and was full of people enjoying the winter sunshine on a beautiful day. It wasn’t exactly legal according to Austin leash law, but Mike observed lots of locals with their pups off leash, so we found an empty section of grass where Caira could cut loose a bit. We would love to return and stay in Austin so that we could give it a proper chunk of time!







Wandering White Sands National Monument (NM)

It was 1912 that New Mexico became this country’s 47th state, and 1942 (WWII) that New Mexico lost more than 2,000 souls. To this day, the sacrifices of New Mexico’s fallen are honored during the annual spring Bataan Memorial Death March. The march is a 26.2 mile desert trek hosted by White Sands Missile Range, recalling the 60 mile march in brutal conditions that 75,000 US troops were forced to make while under Japanese control during the war.

We had a far less solemn experience while staying in Tularosa to visit White Sands National Monument, as do most visitors.  It’s clear just how much impact the White Sands Missile Range has on area residents, as the status of missile testing is part of the morning traffic reports (testing can result in road closures in the area). The facility is a key component to the local economy, as is New Mexico State University.

As we planned to arrive at White Sands for late afternoon in order to take advantage of softer light for photos, we started out the day targeting a little local country store reported to have elk hot dogs and a dog friendly patio. I popped in when we first arrived to check that it was ok to have Caira and Mike hang out on the patio and was actually told Caira was allowed inside. One look at their narrow aisles and quirky goods told me that was not the best idea. We broke the news to her gently and received an understanding look in reply…it was just nice to be wanted, she seemed to say.

We alternated quickly perusing the store’s wares and waiting with the pup on the patio. One of us is better at following the rules and the other was gently chastised (cough, Mike!) for wandering beyond the “public” grounds. He likes to play with the boundaries of socially acceptable behavior from time to time.  We split a couple of elk hot dogs topped with hot peppers for lunch, then headed out toward White Sands NM.  

As with all of our National Park experiences, the ranger who reviewed our pass at the gate gave us a map for orientation, wished us a good time, and reminded us of their leash law. We knew the drill by now! 

Passing kids with their parents and sleds climbing dunes of pure white gypsum, we looked for a quiet area to pull off and begin exploring. Caira and Mike had some serious fun on the dunes, but what we couldn’t get over was how vast the area actually was – approximately 224 square miles. Fun fact: Hollywood has filmed more than 20 major movies there since 1950. There are lots of directions in which to wander, ranger led walks, and a boardwalk displaying information about the wildlife in the area. We stayed until just past sunset, then beat it back toward our campground in Tularosa.








Rocking Away At Rockhound Park (NM)

As we drove along I-10, we saw a few signs warning “zero visibility possible”, which raised our eyebrows a bit. The skies were clear and wind was minimal (just how we like our tow days!), so we quickly moved our attention toward navigating to our destination.

Just south of Deming, nestled amongst the Little Florida Mountains in NM is a state park called Rockhound, which would be our home for the next couple of days. This park is unique in that they actually encourage visitors to look for the agates and quartz crystals found in the area. Park rangers can assist campers with identifying what they’ve found, and in most cases, visitors can keep what they find (a rarity). We didn’t happen upon any special stones, but the views from the park were reward enough. The sites were spacious and with limited light pollution, those evening stars were amazing!

On our second night, the wind picked up to about 25 mph and was really rocking the trailer around – movement enough that both Caira and I had some trouble sleeping. Mike, on the other hand, must have been rocked religiously as a tot, because he slept like a baby. As it turns out, what isn’t much of a big deal during the day can sort of distort the senses a little at night! 

The following morning started a little earlier than normal and as we were consuming our daily dose of caffeine, we noticed a thick dust storm rolling in from afar and it seemed to just swallow everything in its path. Our planned morning hike was now on hold. We checked the forecast and saw that wind speeds of 25-40 mph with gusts over 50 were expected that evening, prompting me to begin researching online and reaching out to a veteran camper (my aunt) to find out what additional safety precautions we might need to take.  Awning was in, antenna was down, and any loose items tucked away, all of which were common sense. Luckily for us, the winds that evening never reached expected speeds, so we didn’t need any extra safeguards like hitching back up. It had largely dissipated before our departure the following morning, enabling a more comfortable, safe environment in which to tow to our next location.




Stunning Sedona & The Doe Mountain Descent

Though it’s true we’d been close to this area before (while in Williams), we had opted to head west and hit the Sedona area on our final* pass east. That time was the first week of December, and we are so glad we stayed a full week! We had a few specific must sees and added others as the week progressed.

While camping in Camp Verde, we checked out the following national monuments that were close to where we stayed:

  • Montezuma Castle: Admired from afar for preservation purposes.
  • Montezuma Well: Surprisingly charming with an otherworldly feel after descending down toward the water.
  • Tuzigoot: Easily accessible with awesome views from atop the ruins.



  

On another day, we opted for a hike called Doe Mountain, which was rated as a moderate hike to the top of a Mesa with stunning 360 degree views. Locating the trailhead was tricky, though we did find it. The trail began with simple rises on packed earth but gradually changed to narrow switchbacks, some with boulders as the actual portions of path. Caira remained on harness, both for regulation as well as for her own safety. We’d been cautioned by one group we passed that there were a few tricky sections, and we might find it difficult with the pup, then were told by another group that there were only two tough spots and we should be ok. After checking in with each other, we opted to continue but agreed to stop if it became dangerous or overly cumbersome for Caira at any point. Ultimately, we made it 90% of the way before calling the game, as the last stretch would require Caira to materialize into a mountain goat…a power she does not possess (as far as we know). Even at our 90% stopping point, the view was indeed stunning! 

  
  

While we never expected snow in AZ (illustrating how very little we knew of the area), we found ourselves amidst a relatively recent snowfall during our day driving the Sunset Crater to Wupatki National Monument loop. The day started a little rough, with Caira getting sick in the car for the first time in the trip. With her system lighter, and after a decent amount of driving, Mike found a golf course just off the highway where she (ahem, they) got to frolick around in the snow a bit. You may recall C’s indifference to snow at Crater Lake in OR, but today was an entirely different story! Though I’m sure she could have played around for longer, we ultimately piled back into the jeep and continued toward the Sunset-Wupatki loop. That drive itself was delightful, with lots of places to stop and check out sweeping views (hello Painted Desert!), as well as short walks ending in close up views of Puebloan village remains used by people of the Northern Sinagua, Cohonina, Kayenta, and Hohokam groups.

 

  


Quite serendipitously, via a FB group for RVing with pets, I’d connected with a new friend named Geneva in the weeks and research leading up to the start of this journey. As it turns out, Geneva has two catahoulas, one of which looked astonishly similar to Caira. We’d exchanged messenges and photos over the course of our travels, and as we shaped our AZ itinerary, Geneva offered to host a Catahoula meetup since she wasn’t too far away from our camp. Though the girls (Caira & Seri) didn’t exactly click, I think Caira & Zeb would have been buds if Caira had a little more time to warm up. Curious, as she typically is more easygoing with other females and is wary of males, but I detected some playfulness brewing with Zeb. Despite the fact that the pups weren’t all immediate bffs (that’s a thing still, right?), Seri, Zeb and Mango were incredibly gracious hosts by letting Caira sniff around their turf! Our new friends (the humans claimed by the aforementioned pack) are veteran travelers with lots of adventures under their belt, generous in both their welcome and area recommendations, and are the kind of traveling spirits we’re looking forward to keeping in touch with as our respective trips progress.

Pictured below: Sweet Mango, Zeb, Seri, and Caira


Last, but not least, we spent an afternoon in Jerome, a copper mining town first inhabited by the Hohokam people that has a rugged history and tenacious spirit. In present day, it exists as a bustling artistic community. Sitting at ~5,000 feet and overlooking the Verde Valley and Mogollon Rim, the views from town were incredible. I cannot imagine a more inspiring location for creating than the pottery studio with the pretty little courtyard in Jerome. We wandered town, encouraged to see that the local establishments seemed to be thriving, and even bumped into a group of hikers we’d chatted with on Doe Mountain earlier that week. Mike was thrilled to be recognized outside of Cincinnati. And while I was pretty confident that Caira’s distinctive features were the reason for said recognition, Caira and I agreed to let him have that one!

  


* For this trip

Catahoula Meets Cowboy in Wickenburg

We took the 3:10 to Yuma (kidding, that’s a movie reference Mike came up with) for a one night stay, then two nights in Congress, near Wickenburg (aka Cowboy Town). The town was preparing for the holidays and setting up lights, but it was otherwise pretty quiet. We had an urgent errand…whole bean coffee. Judge if you must! After securing coffee, which is essential to our operations, we roamed freely about the town to check out the sculptures, parks, and informational plaques. All around town were bronze cast and/or colorful, life size replications of the wild and life in the area. These replicas ranged from snakes to horses to an extra large cowboy who fooled Caira into a state of uneasy caution on her initial approach.

The Hassayampa Riverwalk was just outside town, and though we walked and walked, there was no river to be found. We never did find out why, but suspect drought conditions affected more than just CA.



Chula Vista & The Night of Neverending Tacos

When discussing whether or not to visit Southern California, we had already taken LA off the table due to traffic navigation concerns (no picnic when towing!). Mike really wanted to hit the San Diego area, and timing wise this was going to be our Thanksgiving stay, which meant many campgrounds were already full weeks in advance. Ultimately, we lucked out and found an open spot in an RV park in Chula Vista, just south of San Diego, and adjacent to a marina. Any proximity to water is always a bonus, and there was a charming little pier and community park with a walkway along the water and a view of San Diego proper…especially beautiful at sunset. As we’ve mentioned in previous posts, there are always trade offs, so along with a fantastic location and the ability to get a mail drop (thanks Tony!), the lots were tight – severely limiting privacy.




Some of the more destination style RV parks have event calendars, and this one had a Light Up The Harbor night while we were there. Usually I take a pass at that social stuff unless it’s really intriguing. We’d already spent a good portion of the day navigating the touristy, crowded (yeah yeah, beautiful too) La Jolla area, so I was really feeling the need to restore my energy a bit. In the end, Mike talked me into accompanying him for a little while and I’m glad I did…he’s occasionally right about that kind of thing! We met a really nice, fun couple from Canada (you’ll see a trend here as our posts continue) and enjoyed chatting with them for a couple of hours. We parted ways when the group grew larger to the point that the vibe changed a bit.

Suddenly ravenous after our socializing, we discussed getting takeout for dinner. Mike was feeling wings, but I’d seen reviews for Tacos El Gordo that stated it was delicious and about as legit a street taco experience as you can get on this side of the border. After some cajoling, he graciously gave in and offered to go get them. Had we read a just little further into the reviews, we’d have known that the establishment had separate lines for each type of meat, making it the perfect place to hit with a few friends: divide/conquer/share. Not so awesome for a solo takeout experience, given one of us stayed behind with the pup.


Returning (much) later with two bags of food, sense of humor intact, Mike starts handing me taco after taco after taco after taco. I look at him questioningly, as it was much more than the 5 items we’d planned to order. He shrugs: “I don’t know what we got, but we’ve got a lot of tacos.” As it turns out, there was some kind of mixup in ordering and we netted about 22+ tacos. We ate dinner and it was really delicious – those great reviews were well earned! We kicked around handing out the extras to those who might need it, but ultimately decided it was too late in the evening and we weren’t quite familiar enough with the area outside the marina to pull that off safely. Instead, we used the leftovers for breakfast (huevos & adobada are muy bueno!) and dinner (reconstituted with extra fresh ingredients)…for days. We also couldn’t resist taunting my brother in law, Nate, with the occasional pic of our street taco turned ____ creations.


That Thanksgiving, in addition to feeling grateful for our friends and family, this overall travel experience, and our health, we added the following to our list:

  • Helpful young men who could easily have steered Mike to the lengua (tongue) or sesos (brain) line, but instead directed him to the delicious adobada and pastor.
  • Inexpensive street tacos (we paid for them all, and our budget for takeout is limited!)

Having an entire week in one place enabled us to relax a little more than the average stopover allows, visit with an old friend who had recently relocated to SD, check out a couple of area sites (La Jolla and Cabrillo), and handle some ops items and planning for the stretch of road that came next. I’d be remiss if I didn’t also say that being back in CA felt oddly regressive, which is silly since one of the goals of this trip is to see what we haven’t yet seen of this country. Even still, I couldn’t shake that feeling of having taken a step backward – and was itching to get back on the road and out of CA traffic as the week wound down. Onward & East-ish!

Age Restrictions & Joshua Tree’s Swarm Warnings

After leaving the Williams, AZ area, we had a brief stay near Vegas to check out Hoover Dam, then continued onward toward Palm Springs. Nevada had much more for us to explore, but that would have to wait for another trip. It was in this area though, that we began to notice that not all RV parks were “all ages”. Many were 55+, which meant we didn’t make the cut (loud sigh of relief from Mike). While we did ultimately find a nice park near the Salton Sea, the age parameter added another dimension to our searches for overnight stays.

En route to our park near the Salton Sea, it really hit me just how different city highway driving was compared to the country highways and byways I’d enjoyed driving so far. Mike is less rattled when towing in more congested areas, but I’d take 3 hours behind the wheel on country highways to 30 minutes of city driving any day of the week!

We were only in the Palm Springs vicinity a few days, primarily to visit Joshua Tree National Park, do our laundry and restock the pantry (in that order). Joshua Tree was really different from all the other NPs we’d visited so far…it was our first true desert experience. There were few other visitors and even fewer animal sightings, but it was definitely a unique take and worth stopping for anyone passing through the area. Native animals we saw included a roadrunner and several kangaroo rats as well as a rabbit. Native plants included the park’s namesake Joshua Tree, as well as Ocotillo, Prickly Pear Cactus and Cholla.

We entered Joshua Tree at the south entrance, and originally planned to drive through and exit at the north end near Twentynine Palms. Instead, we ended up driving through and doubling back the way we’d came in order to catch sunset in the park. This also let us stop at a few turnouts that we’d missed on our initial pass.




  • At one such turnout, Mike noticed a sign warning visitors of the possibility for bees to swarm the vehicle in search of water. I can only imagine how differently our day would have gone had I seen that warning much earlier in the day! Mike and I have an ongoing difference of opinion regarding the duration of his promise to “protect me from bees” as stated in his wedding vows. He claims it was only good for a 5 year term and I keep reminding him that if the rest of our vows were meant for a lifetime, so was that statement 🙂 Feel free to weigh in here readers…
  • The other turnout was for a Cholla Cactus Garden, which we caught just before sunset. This garden had another sign warning visitors about the potential for high volume presence of bees, but at the time we stopped, they were all safely tucked into their little bee beds.