Roughing it in the desert

Saturday March 28th 2020

Our last Saturday in Arizona, as we start preparing to head north, we are not likely have the barbecue out again until we get back to chilly Ontario. So we are making good use of the barbecue before putting it away and we head north, so on Friday we had some fresh asparagus and some ribeye steaks, we each eat half and froze the other half for warm up meal later, tonight we are barbecuing burgers, and cooking the whole package, so we will have some extra patties pre-cooked for a quick meal on the road, and Sunday we are grilling a large package of chicken breasts that can warmed, sliced, and be used for multiple meals over the next couple of weeks.

It’s been a good day, we got a chance to speak with Butch & Betty by phone, and they are both well but are still locked down at home in Ohio, and as always Butch put this whole coronavirus thing into perfect perspective, in Butch’s words: “so some bat shits on a goat in China, and the world as we know it is over”. Sounds a little bit crazy but it’s almost true … but as long as people have the ability to move around the world so easily, someone in China farts, and we smell it here in the Arizona desert … or maybe that was just from the herd of cows that have been wondering around our coach here on the Arizona state land.

We will be moving on Monday, as the return north journey begins, Google says we are about 2200 miles (3550 kms) back to Ontario and our summer home. So if we average 200 miles a day we are only 11 or 12 days away. So that brings us back on Easter Weekend, usually a large family event of which I’m sure will only be a mere shadow of a normal Easter celebration, no matter the orange squirrel in Washington says. We are down to choosing between two routes, both have us starting our trip by driving about an hour south to Tucson Arizona then heading East to Las Cruses New Mexico. There we have to make the big decision whether we stay on I-10 to I-20 through Texas, or head north east to catch I-40 through Texas. The later is the shorter 2200 mile route and if weather co-operates it is our preferred route of choice, and while we are expecting some cold wet weather we do want to avoid heavy rain or god forbid any snow, so it is a case of picking points on our possibly routes and comparing temperatures and watching for possible storms. Either route has us aiming to cross the border at the Blue Water Bridge at Sarnia Ontario.

We are expecting lighter traffic than normal as we head back, also expecting to find no restaurants open, other than fast food drive thrus with many states are asking for people to stay home. Many camp grounds apparently are closed and while we do not use them ourselves it also means many people who do may be trying to find alternative spots to park. We have also heard all about the mandatory quarantine once we re-enter Canada, and the large fines for not obeying the rules, and even about a “snitch line” to report the rule breakers. All this means that we will need to have a full 14 days of all supplies which means food, paper products, a full tank of fuel, and very large supply of cocktails when we get back. Supplies have been hard to find with lots of empty shelves still, although it seemed to be getting better this last week, but it will be one of our main task as we start the journey.

So Monday we are going to a full hookup campground in Tucson, to dump our tanks, refill the fresh water, catch up on laundry, make a Costco run, and say goodbye to some new friends that we met at the Beaver motor coach rally in Quartzsite that wintered in Tucson, we said our goodbyes to Ray and Karen on Wednesday, and then we can take a serious look east and start rolling on Tuesday. We had planned to try to see the Ward family on our trip back but we think in the best interest of all parties, we probably should pass on a visit this trip. Because in reality everyone knows (or at least should know) that this is not even close to being over and will leave lots of painfully reminders for years to come, both financially and the loss of life, but we will move on and meet the challenges head on.Please be well and stay safe!

As Always: Stay safe, be careful, and be well!

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