Last night, I slept in my own bed, my husband by my side and two dogs in their preferred spots – Ellie curled up in her new bed, and Bebe’, who became a new member of our family while I was gone, snuggled in her crate.
Camping was a challenge. It was nice to have the consistency of my tent because where it went up was different every night. The ground out west was hard as rock. I bent my tent stakes attempting to pound them in. I like a firm mattress, but the ground out there was over the top. I finally got some reprieve after our silty stay with the scorpions in Kent by using the cushions from BABS’ couch under my mat and sleeping bag.
Bathrooms were often challenging as well. Our first stop had no toilet or shower facilities at all and BABS got her first workout. At an early stay in Palo Verde, CA, the floor of the bathroom had just been painted and was still wet. I admit to pooping twice in the great outdoors, both times in Texas. I had to get coaching on just how to do this. (You lean up against a tree. Squatting is tough.) Texas is richer due to my fertilizer contribution. At Woodsy Hollow RV Park in Goodrich, TX, we were instructed not to put toilet paper in the toilet. That was a first. In Panacea, FL, there was a sign up in the bathroom: “This is a water saving toilet. If you have a large evacuation of the bowel, flush between deposits.” Then written in by hand were the words, “Female idams (sic) in the trash.” We came out of the rain in Tallahassee to a Motel 6 and the toilet didn’t work.
Showers were also varied and challenging. In Quartzsite, AZ, we had to put quarters in to get hot water. Out of the rain in Alpine, Texas, we got into a nice hotel only to find our shower had no hot water. That happened again at Bastrop State Park. In Kent, Texas, we showered with a Sun Shower.
It’s good to be home where the mattress is firm but yielding, the toilet works without complaint or restrictions, and the shower has consistent hot water. Still, it was worth toughing it out for the amazing adventure.