- Texas State Fair October 23, 2017
We were going to go straight from Austin to Louisiana until we found out that the Texas State Fair was coming to Dallas. It apparently was huge so we had to do it. To quote the movie Real Genius, it was a moral imperative.
It was indeed big. The food was meh. We saw the vendors and were drooling over the mentions of fried this and fried that. One big bummer is that the state fair had the concept of tickets. Each ticket is worth 50 cents and were a big pain in the butt. The other odd part was that the games required a separate game card, not purchased with tickets (so two payment systems).
The food included fried everything – fruit loops, smores, pumpkin pie and sliders. We also had beef on a stick.
The sights were better than the food. Many from above thanks to a Ferris Wheel.
They were doing a taping of some kind of Carnival Eats with kids, and Guy Fieri was on hand to keep us all entertained.
So would we do it again? Sure, if in the are, we totally would go again but wouldn’t go out of our way to be there. We spent a TON of time there (at least 6 hours) and enjoyed walking around the fair, everything was paved so made for easy walking. We would not get as excited for the food but was still fun!
- Firewood October 9, 2017
Chris was in Las Vegas for a conference at the Mandalay Bay. The night the conference was set to start, he met with clients and about to leave after just paying the bill. They started to head out around 10:15 pm. As they attempted to leave they were locked in by police. Everyone inside knew there was a gunman but no one knew how completely tragic the events would become.
This is our second brush with an American tragedy that was too close for comfort. Kim was on 34th and 7th in New York on 9/11. Chris was in the Mandalay Bay in Vegas when 59 people were gunned down and hundreds of others were injured. We both have tales of the hours and hours we spent trying to get back to home base but we both know that these experiences was a pittance in comparison to what others endured. We have no explanation or reason why it happened. We know that we were damned lucky to be where we were during the time. Even being on the peripheral of these events, they are ever surreal.
We have no words for this tragedy. We just need to carry on in some way. Regina Spektor has a lovely song called “Firewood” which kind of gets to the guts of it.The piano is not firewood yet
They try to remember but still they forget
That the heart beats in threes
Just like a waltz
And nothing can stop you from dancingRise from your cold hospital bed
I’ll tell you, you’re not dying
Everyone knows you’re going to live
So you might as well start tryingLove what you have and you’ll have more loveYou’re not dyingEveryone knows you’re going to loveThough there’s still no cure for crying
We have reservations in two very different locations for the winter. After the hurricanes in Florida we made reservations at Las Vegas Motorcoach Resort, just in case. We stayed at LVM for six months in 2015-2016 (our second winter). We still have reservations for Florida. There is a 75% chance that we’ll be going to Florida because Las Vegas is COLD in the winter (for people who like warmth). That said, the events in Las Vegas won’t deter us from going there again. The weather might, but the events won’t. We will keep traveling throughout this nation.One of the downsides of RVing is the amount of planning you need to do if you have a large RV and want to stay in a popular place. However, life then happens. Hurricanes happen. Our recommendation is if you plan on staying anywhere for a whole season, particularly somewhere there’s weather activity, make alternate plans elsewhere and cancel if you must. Big rigs are tough, particularly if you care to keep them in one piece. We will continue to travel and stay where we want, enjoying what this nation has to offer. That said, we can’t help but feel extreme sadness for all those whose only crime was being in a spot that a madman, or madmen, targeted. It is so tragic and yet so simple, thoughts and prayers don’t even begin to touch it. And during this time, we learned Tom Petty died. One of his songs happens to be the one we sing at the top of our lungs all the time (Free Fallin’). Sigh. Dance on, friends.
- The Hills are Alive! September 11, 2017
Sometimes when you retrace your steps and return to places you’ve been before, you have your eyes on doing things you meant to do the first time around but didn’t. For us, in returning to Central City for a quick stop. We liked the view from the KOA there (spots 1-10 only, if you’re looking) so decided to spend half our long weekend there. There was a path where we saw bikers and hikers the year before so decided to check it out.
As we explored, we saw Mine Reclamation decals on capped mines and lots of interesting land formations. We continued to explore and then came upon two FOR SALE signs. Hmmmm. That was interesting as while the trails appeared to be publicly used the land wasn’t in fact public. We joked that we would eventually find Hillpeople.
Lots of interesting things, including train tracks buried along with items capped as part of the Colorado reclamation.
And that’s when we came upon the “protector of mines”. We actually don’t know his name, but he came upon us and tried, unsuccessfully, to scare us.
“First I won’t tell you of the bears that inhabit this area. And then I won’t tell you about the cats. [We wondered: Are they tomcats? Mountain lions? Kittens? What cats is he talking about?] And then I won’t tell you about the hawks. [Are hawks people hunters?] You could die ten different ways here and each step you take is another step towards unsuspected death.” We fully expected him to whisper into a walkie talkie “Cue the bear.”
We scanned him visually for weapons during his stories and saw nothing. We then thanked him and moved on. “Now geeks!”, you may say. “If you shouldn’t be on the land, why didn’t they put a No Trespassing sign?” Excellent question! It turns out, about a quarter mile left from the entrance of the trail, there’s this sign. It isn’t actually visible without technological assistance of the iPhone which was zoomed up all the way. Alrighty then. Why someone who doesn’t want trespassing doesn’t put the sign near the entrance where they’d most likely trespass is beyond our pay grade. “But wait”, you may ask, “what about the For Sale signs that were placed mid-path on the land itself, which wouldn’t ever be visible to anyone unless they took the trail?” Another excellent question. Also beyond our pay grade.
So we got to see some neat stuff, saw the mine equivalent of a Hillperson and lived to tell the tale. The only recommendation we have is to look extremely closely for No Trespassing signs.