The Latest Game Plan

Overlooking the Lake

Overlooking the Lake

BLUEWATER LAKE SP, NM—I left Albuquerque yesterday to head for higher ground and cooler temperatures. I had intended to stay in Bluewater for only a day while I checked out some possible boondocking locations, but I didn’t find anything in the area that compared to the wonderful views and diverse foliage of the park, so I re-upped my annual pass and decided to stay a couple weeks.

The game plan, though tentative, is to spend spring, summer and fall in northern New Mexico and southern Colorado, then work my way back to Florida for the winter.

While in Florida, I intend to buy a van or mini-bus and build it out as a go-anywhere second mobile home.

The idea is to put the trailer in storage during the warmer months while traveling and exploring in the van, then, during winter, staying at a campground near my folks in Florida while living out of the trailer.

Native Floridians make fun of the snowbirds who arrive every year all pink and pale on Thanksgiving then flee to the north (all dark and tanned) on Easter, so as a native, the irony of becoming one isn’t lost on me.

 

I Want. I Want. I Want.

Pool Umbrella

Pool Umbrella

SANDIA CASINO, ALBUQUERQUE, NM—One of the things I love about the nomad life is the freedom—the ability, when you grow tired or bored with where you’re at, to just pull up stakes and move on.

I’ve spent the last six weeks in solitude. Now I’m right smack in the middle of civilization.

Such a different and desperate attitude most people in cities have (I want. I want. I want.) In The Carefree Diet (got two great reviews—still looking for more), I talk about how simply seeing an image of a slice of chocolate cake leads to cravings—leads to desire (I want. I want. I want.). Cities are filled with advertisements, not just for food, but for baubles and riches and luxury and comfort… all of which has the same effect on us (I want. I want. I want.).

I’m not trying to be critical. It’s something that just struck me as I drove into the city. It’s perfectly natural to pursue pleasure, to want the desirable, to yearn for the unattainable. It’s just silly to do it blindly, to unconsciously assume the bauble will bring lasting pleasure.

As She/We/I said awhile ago, “There is only one thing in this entire Universe which is permanent, and whatever it is you are clinging to, that ain’t it.”

Oddly enough, recognizing that the object of your desire isn’t going to be around for very long… well that just makes your time with it so much sweeter.

Anyway, I figure I’ll spend a week here and catch up on some movies, eat something other than tamales, write some code in the many coffee shops, and maybe go for a swim or two or three in the casino’s pool. From there, who knows?

I know… it’s a rough life.

 

Kicked Out

View From Camp

BLM LAND OUTSIDE SOCORRO, NM—I moved my campsite a couple days ago to a spot, though marked on the maps as BLM land, gave me that feeling like it may not be open to camping. No particular rational reason, just a felt one.

Today a rancher came by and asked what I was doing and I replied that I was writing some software but I don’t think that’s what he meant. He softened though and said I can’t camp here, that he leases the land for ranching and this isn’t a designated BLM campsite. I explained that I thought BLM land was open for everyone, but I didn’t push it (as I didn’t know if leased BLM land was off-limits to campers).

I asked if it was alright to move on tomorrow and he said sure. He shook my hand twice with a smile of relief. I guess he thought I’d give him a hard time since, well, I’ve got kinda that look (at least before I’ve had a chance to speak).

Even though I suspect it’s OK to camp here (I’ve shared campsites with many a cow-with-horns), I’ll move on tomorrow anyway simply because when She whispers, I roll.

Which Way?

Knot Hole

SOMEWHERE OUTSIDE SOCORRO, NM—With the weather starting to warm up nicely, I’ve been contemplating my next moves (literally). My NM annual park pass has expired, but I’ll probably renew it so I can focus on writing code. The nice thing about the pass is that it pays for itself in three weeks—after that, it’s all free camping.

I’m due to leave here on Tuesday. In national forests, you are allowed to camp in one spot for up to two weeks, but what that really means is that you’re allowed to camp for two weeks after a ranger has come by to visit, and that will be Tuesday for me. 🙄

I’ll probably stay a week or two on some BLM land I’ve scoped out just west of Socorro, then head up to Albuquerque for a little casino camping to get my city fix in.

Tough life, I know.

Test of Faith

ROCK HOUND SP, NM—It has been said that the difference between Faith and Belief is that Faith takes trust.

There is a high-top van out in Phoenix which fits the bill of my next rig. Good price, right size, low miles, etc. I want it.

But…

I chipped a dental crown yesterday. Just south of here, the Kodger highly recommends a dentist down in Mexico (cheap and professional).

But…

This morning, a minor case of chest congestion has turned into a full blown, kick-my-butt, cold/flu.

What would you do?

Old Wayne would have said screw it, pushed through the discomfort, drove to Phoenix and bought the rig (especially after seeing fellow nomad Glenn fly a thousand miles to do the same thing).

But…

Faith takes trust.

She works in mysterious ways.

Surrender is the way of the sage, of Cosmic Consciousness, of the Illumed, of being one with the Tao. Surrender to Her will.

Ie: Trust.

Even though my mind resists, the plan is to rest and wait out the illness, then see where She leads me next (Mexico, Phoenix, ???).

The mind says “A” but She says “B.” Which would you listen to?

Hypocrites are a dime a dozen. Either we live our faith and values… or we should stop preaching them.

Exploring

ROCK HOUND SP, NM—After some lunch, I strolled around “downtown” Deming. I really enjoy exploring new places—just poking around, wandering the alleys, and waiting for a photo to present itself.

That’s probably the biggest reason I’m considering downsizing to a van-type rig: to find and explore new places without having to contemplate where to park the trailer, how long I’ll stay, or where I’ll head next.

Synchronicity and Self Gifting

LEASBURG DAM SP, NM—As I’ve mentioned previously, I’ve been thinking about downsizing and simplifying my rig to either a van or minibus and converting it into a stealthy, go practically anywhere home.

In such a small rig, a big challenge is storage space. Yesterday, I found what may be the perfect power tool for RV’ers for the simple reason that it is so compact and versatile: The Craftsman Bolt-On System.

Its got a lot of attachments that are very useful for a full-time RV’er: Drill, jig saw, circular saw, impact driver, router, even a tire inflator—and it all fits into one handy, easy-to-stow bag.

Feeling a little guilty (but not really) I self-gifted it to myself. What a great Christmas gift! In addition to the drill, She got me the circular saw, impact driver, and carrying case (I already have a jig saw and tire inflator). I’ve got to say, I’m a very happy camper. 🙂 They are powerful enough for my needs, easy to swap out, and the case fits perfectly behind the driver’s seat.

Synchronistically, as I left the mall, parked next to my truck—and I had parked all alone, well away from the crowd—was a minibus of the same type I’ve been contemplating. Since it was right next to me, I was able to compare its size and width to my truck (same size), and eyeball the interior to figure out the layout. Pretty much every question I had about a minibus was answered.

Sometimes I’m amazed at how I no longer think anything is odd when synchronistic “coincidences” happen (see Synchronicity Implies God). They happen so often that I’ve come to expect them (though I am always grateful).

Stuck Again

Stuck Truck

ELEPHANT BUTTE LAKE SP, NM—This morning, I had one of those feelings again and I didn’t listen to it. Well, I’m stuck again. One of the camp host volunteers said the road to the Three Sisters camp area was “pretty good”, but as I got about half way down I said, “No way” and turned around as soon as I found a spot.

Apparently though, I took a wrong turn on my way back out, and seeing tire tracks and thinking I made it this way before, proceeded to get stuck in the soft sand even though I was driving fast to avoid it.

After spending three hours jacking up each tire, sticking traction blocks under them, and repeating over and over and only making three feet, I called the ranger. They wanted to refer me to a tow service. I asked them if they know anyone who’d like to make a quick $100.

Still waiting for a reply. No biggie, I’ve enough supplies to last a week or two.

City Distractions

The Back of the Movie Theater

BLUEWATER LAKE SP, NM—This morning, I left the casino for some solitude.

Let me say this straight up, the casino is a great place to stay.

Often you hear people say they can’t afford the RV lifestyle because they have to work a 9-5 job. Albuquerque is one of those cities where you could hold down a regular job, live for free in an RV and just move your rig every few days between the three casinos on the outskirts of town (and there are many cities in the US where this would work). No excuses! 🙂

No, I didn’t leave because it is expensive, noisy or boring. I left because there are way too many distractions in Albuquerque: cheap eats, bookstores, coffee shops, movie theaters…. All pulling me away from a work load that has been building up relentlessly.

On a more positive note, Randy and his crew dropped in at the casino for the Balloon Festival and we all hung out a few evenings (I don’t consider Randy and his tribe a distraction as RV’ers are quite respectful of each other’s privacy). But it was time for me to go, so I said my goodbyes last night and this morning headed westward and upward to Bluewater State Park.

Because it’s getting cooler, I pretty much have the place to myself. Mark and Ginger (also of Randy’s tribe) are here, but even they are leaving after the weekend.

With lots of solitude, I should get lots of work done.