Old Diary, Travel

Gettin’ Ready to Move

Our 28 days have come to an end.  As I said before, this is one of those rare USACOE where you can get an extension to their 14 day nationwide limit and stay 28 days, after October — and we have used up our time.  It’s been good to be here, but it’s time to move further South.

Before talking about our departure I want to highlight how much things can change in 1 short month.

The foreshortened shoreline when we arrived

The foreshortened shoreline when we arrived

The shoreline now after a month with very little rain.

The shoreline now after a month with very little rain.

When we arrived there had been a period of decent rain.  Since arriving we have seen  significant rain one night and one day of very light sprinkles.  In that time the shoreline of the reservoir has receded a couple hundred feet.  At the time of the top picture I had no idea I would want to document the shoreline so this was taken from a raised section of the campground overlooking the shore in the distance.  The lower image was taken from right down there where the campsite is and the water is easily a couple hundred feet from where it had been earlier.

Also,  In all my days, never did I ever think I’d be a resident of Mississippi — not even for a minute — not even for a month.  But I have to say that living here for a month has been a very interesting experience.  I have totally enjoyed the spirit of the Mississippians we have met.  They have been friendly and welcoming.  Now that’s not unusual in campgrounds — you are, after all, meeting people when they are in a good, getaway, mood.   But in all fairness I have to say that the in-state campers we’ve met here have been warmer than in numerous other states.  (and if you don’t know how I know they are in-state campers — well, all I had to do is check the vehicle licenses).

This campground is profoundly Mississippian.  In 27 days we saw a grand total of 5 RV’s  from outside Mississippi.  I expected more transients — Snowbirds en route to the South — but we did not see them.  What we saw were campers who come back weekend after weekend even into the fall — to enjoy a very pleasant place.   Considering the number of RV’ers out there I am continually surprised that we are as spread out into every nook and cranny as we are.


Milwaukee’s CURRENT Racial Makeup

Milwaukee Diversity

The Milwaukee – Chicago Corridor clearly is a melting pot.

Then again,  let’s talk about diversity.  I grew up in Milwaukee WI during the middle of racial reform in this country.  When my daughter was going to public school in Milwaukee we were being told that Milwaukee had the worst racial segregation in the nation.

As a guy who has always gotten long with pretty much everyone that has always bothered me, and it had a lasting impact:  one thing I notice when I travel is what sort of racial diversity exists in a place. I am accustomed to diversity and I miss it when I don’t find it.   Now, don’t get me wrong…. I’m not a novice traveler.  I know from experience that camping in general and RV’ing in particular are activities that are far more popular among Whites.  But frequently we will find some other ethnic group mixed in among the campers.  For example, during our stay on the Oregon Coast there were significant Hispanics and Asians sort of balancing out White population — no in equal numbers but enough to be noticed.  (And to cause consternation because the Forest Services signs and literature was written only in English — and our volunteers often ran into problems with Spanish speaking campers)

US Population Diversity

National Diversity Map. Click on the link to go to the City-Data Interactive Chart

So, it was very apparent to me when we arrived here that diversity was something missing.   In spite of Mississippi having the second highest Black population in the country (after Washington D.C.) we saw NO Black campers, and only 1 family of Asians.  ?????   Considering how noticeably mixed the town of Grenada is — 6 short miles away — I found that perplexing, perhaps even troubling.   From the map it’s easy to see that we are moving into areas with more diverse than what we are accustomed to.  I’m eager,  curious,  to see what we find, and maybe to taste some more interesting food!  Right here it’s been a little bit bland.

Time to move on


A simple route

We have no reservation for our next stop.  We’re hoping to find a place at Bayou Segnette S.P. for 5 days. Checking recently they were 50% booked — so we should be OK. You may remember that our early plan had been to spend two weeks there and two weeks in Grand Isle but changing family plans have resulted in this fore-shortened stay.

Bayou SegnetteAs you know we aren’t big nighttime people; we’re pretty low key.  I’m looking forward to some seafood,  a little time in NOLA and a drive to Grand Isle to check it out — all within 4 days on the ground — and without breaking a sweat.  That’s some tall order.

However, this won’t be our only visit to NOLA. I feel no compulsion to see a lot.  We’ll experience whatever we experience of New Orleans.  The immediate draw for me is checking out Louisiana State Parks! So, this as less of a visit to the City and more of a chance to get to know the two parks, and get the lay of the land for future visits.  Doing that on our way to S. Texas; two birds, one stone:  sounds like a bargain to me!

If we get an early start we’ll stop in at Camping World in Hammond LA. It’s not far out of the way. A little RV store window shopping might do me good.  Inspiration is where we find it, right?  Maybe they’ll have a Flagpole Buddy in stock, and I’m still puttering around trying to store our belongings in places where we can remember where we’ve put them so ideas are always welcome.  (God’s Honest Truth though — we have a better idea where things are in this coach than we ever did in our HOUSES!)

Back to the subject of overnight stops for a moment.  As you may remember we thought  stay at more campgrounds along our way South.  There are other Louisiana and Mississippi State Parks.  But the decision not to do so was based on the idea that good old RV’ing adage:  SLOW DOWN!  We were having a good time where we were. We didn’t need a change, so we decided to save those other stops for another trip/s.

Yet another example of how PRE-mobility ideas about RV life morphs over time.  We transitioned from single nights in one place (even from TWO nights in one place) in favor of longer travel days and fewer setup/departure days. Neither of which changes the number of intriguing places to visit or the things to be done in every state.  Next time through we’ll be free to choose either new stops or you’ll hear us spout nonsense about returning to places we have liked in the past claiming them as our ‘favorites’ when in fact we have no idea of the other options.  < no, I’m  not really being sarcastic, just thinking about some of the comments we’ve heard along the way. >  It’s a wonderful luxury not to feel the need to see everything or do everything on the first time.  All that we need to remain happy RV’ers is to enjoy each stay to the full, and while there to do a little reconnoitering for future visits.

Thanks for stopping by, and I’ll talk with you tomorrow.


2 thoughts on “Gettin’ Ready to Move

  1. DK says:

    Hope your travels are smooth and uneventful. One thing you also might keep in mind is how skewed fall travel is overall to people that don’t have kids in school. We have definitely noticed this over the past three years in all campgrounds we have visited. The summer crowd is always more diverse in just about every way, ages, race, etc., since free time is more readily available for all during that season. That is our experience anyway. Fall pretty much seems to be for the over 60 crowd, which makes sense. Families with kids in school have lots going on in the fall with school and group activities. Been there, done that. Glad we are now in the crowd with more free time in the fall, but will also admit that I miss the fun of kids at home, too.


    • We have always enjoyed traveling during the autumn, or more precisely — any time the kids are still in school! It’s so much easier no matter how you look at it, or where you are going. (except maybe for amusement parks which need to those college workers on hiatus to man the parks — which we don’t do anyway!)

      I don’t know about you, but I find that there are always ways to get your necessary fix with kids. And people watching is always a fun time.

      Here in Bayou Segnette we’re about 1/3 full but I haven’t seen more than 2 little ones — but then we’ve only been here a few hours. 🙂

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