We're usually never found in Texas this late in the summer. We are amazed that anyone else is here either, except maybe horned toads and rattlesnakes. As wonderful as it is, my glorious home state would be a vast empty territory in the summertime were it not for sellers of air conditioners, who certainly must thrive during these uninhabitable months. That's why Phannie's engine usually comes alive soon after grandson Mason's birthday on June 3, and we head north--anywhere north.
On such occasions, my desire to get outta town finds me wishing I were back in an airliner cockpit where, after taking off and pushing a few buttons, there is little else to do except monitor the panel displays and enjoy a cool drink while the airplane flies itself at 600 mph directly where it was programmed to go. In fact, the airplane would prefer that I not get involved, as it thinks it flies better than humans. That's not entirely wrong; the only reason pilots are there is to analyze the weather and tweak things, intervening if some computer chip goes haywire. I've tried hands-off driving with Phannie, but it doesn't seem to work very well. (Just kidding.) And let's not even talk about the difference between 600 mph and 60 mph. Oh, well--that was a different time, and each season of life has its rewards.
We only stayed so late in Texas because of a need to visit my orthopedic doctor in Dallas when we were finished at Red Bay. We had intended to leave for Colorado from there, but I began to have knee problems that needed some intervention. The doc thinks I'll be a good candidate for partial knee replacements before long, but he gave me some injections that will, hopefully, get me through the summer. Poor Sandy is going to need surgery on her foot this fall, so we may find ourselves parked for a while later this year. This all depends on the virus thing's being mitigated somewhat, of course, in the Dallas and Houston areas. With all our annoying health issues, I think God is getting back at me for scoffing, when I was a youngster, about all the visits old people were making to doctors. Well, I'm not scoffing now; we're only held together these days by spare parts and chemicals.
We really enjoyed our stay in Aledo, a little town between Fort Worth and Weatherford, at Cowtown, a very friendly and reasonable RV park. We were able to visit with several of our friends, but in keeping with the forgetfulness that comes with getting older, I neglected to take a single photo of any of them! I'm chalking that up to the excitement of the visits and catching up on everything. The only photo I was able to get was that of the Parker County Courthouse in Weatherford, an iconic old landmark built in 1884.
I've always admired counties who value and keep these historic courthouses, unlike my hometown of Nacogdoches, Texas, where the old courthouse was torn down when I was a kid to make room for a modern but nondescript structure. There are still citizens there and ex-citizens (including me) who are upset about this travesty.
Well, that was a lot of digressing to report that we are on our way to Colorado. We will spend only one night on the road en route to our first destination, Colorado Springs, that overnight stop being in Dumas, Texas. For those of you needing no more than an overnight space with 50-amp power, you can't beat the city-owned Texhoma Park, which has a couple dozen RV spaces that are FREE for a 24-hour stay. Now, there's no water or sewer, but who needs that for one night? I think it's the best bargain we've ever found; it was a very nice park with perfectly flat gravel sites. What a find!
The July heat was miserable on our drive to Dumas. Need proof? Here's Phannie's outside air temperature gauge around mid-afternoon:
By this time, we were forced to turn on the generator and get help from the roof airs, and that made the rest of the trip much more pleasant.
The next post will be from Colorado, where we'll reveal our little surprise. Stick around!
Thank you, Lord, for this wonderful life;
please forgive me if I fail to appreciate it each day as I should.
We don't stop playing because we get old; we get old because we stop playing.
---George Bernard Shaw
"I get up every morning, and I just don't let the old man in." ---Clint Eastwood