What have we got ourselves into?


We arrived yesterday in San Benito to 80º temps and as soon as we did the the overnight dropped to the 40’s and the forecast for today is only 63º!  
Gimme a break!  
<just a little good hearted laughter folks,
I’m not complaining
— the coldest place on earth yesterday
was in Russia and it was -41º F>  
Fortunately our temps should
head back to the mid 70’s
in a day or so.

What have we got ourselves into?

The people here are friendly.  I mean FRIENDLY! I’m hoping that’s just the initial impression because you can overdo FRIENDLY! It might have been that we arrived with a question (Do you know a good local RV repair station, our fridge is broken?),  but people go scurrying around like crazy at the least provocation!   I really need a few days of this to figure out where we fit in around here.  thetford-logo

That said, we did get three RV repair suggestions, one of them is listed in the Thetford catalog of Norcold Refrigerators so we’ll give them a shot and see if we can’t get this fridge up and running again.  I’m getting tired of searching for stores with bagged ice!  We called early in the morning and we have a 1 p.m. appointment to check it out.  So, jacks up, slides in, let’s go for a drive!  <The good news is that’s a quicker appointment by several DAYS than we could have gotten in Houston>

Good Location

Our LocationAs for where we are… personally I think we’re in just about the right location for us.   We are 1 block south of Texas Highway 100 and three miles East of US 77.  That means we can take 100 right into South Padre Island and Port Isabel.  1 block away is FM-803 which takes us most of the way into Laguna Atascosa NWR.  And we are three miles from US 77 which takes us the +/- 10 miles back to Harlingen from which we can head West towards Mission and the rest of the Rio Grande Valley communities, or return North via US-77.    And of course we can take US 77 South to Brownsville.  There are day-to-day-living  good and services here — between Los Fresnos, San Benito, Harlingen and Brownsville, so I’m a happy camper.  As much as we liked the campground there at Grenada — getting what you needed was a pain. We never intended to stay a month in Grenada when we were on our way here but the contrast still stands out in high relief.

We have a quandry

Ok — I know we just got here after what seemed like months of talking about it (actually it was months getting here talking about it!)  But we have discovered a curious wrinkle.

Over recent days Peggy had despaired whether our choice for the winter was right — not because anything had happened, but because it had been  a while since I’d shown her all the details about the park.  So before leaving Matagorda we got out the website and looked at everything all over again and we were both reassured of our decision.  And then we found it.  An interesting page on their website  of which I have no recollection at all.  I wonder if it’s new?

They have an RV storage option available for up to 9 months with a three month reservation.  I’m not sure whether that would work for us but this could be our answer to the Canadian Maritime dilemma.   We both want to make one more trip to the Canadian Maritimes and while I talked about it half a year ago we have since come to think that it’s not very likely that we’ll ever do that trip in the coach.  But if we liked this area enough to want to spend part of next winter here as well, we could leave our coach here and make the trip by car.  It’s not a plan but it’s something to ruminate about.

The way we travel in the coach I’m just not sure that 60 days north of the border would be enough to comfortably see what we’d like to see.   We travel much slower in the coach. Could we take that same trip in a car, with drastically reduced fuel expenses?  I don’t know but it’s something I’ll ponder over for the next few months when I have nothing better to do with my time.  🙂

fifty cent pieceBY way of sharing, I generally use a figure of fifty cents a mile for fuel when we travel.  That’s sort of the easy calculation of 8 miles a gallon on $4.00/gallon diesel.  A trip of 7900  miles quickly gets expensive:  nearly $4000 just in fuel.  There are fuel costs for driving a car, of course.  The savings would be the difference between the amount of fuel we’d buy for the coach and that amount we’d buy for the car.  In this case about $1200.   Canadian PROVINCIAL campgrounds might average about $25.00 a night but Canadian motels are going to be a bit steeper; closer to $80.00 a night (or more).  And then there is the fact that an auto trip means we would not eat in the coach — so our food costs would be a lot higher.

I’m not sure what we will conclude — it’s not a clearcut win/win situation but it’s something to ponder. 🙂  One thing you can clearly see is that my trip planning not about tying down a precise budget!  🙂

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5 Comments

  1. Hi Peter, usually I read your blog posts on my Smartphone but today I went to your actual page and was amazed to see a very familiar sight, the Cape Arago Lighthouse! We have seen all of the Oregon lights and most of Washington plus lots of the lights in Florida north to Maryland. This summer we may decide to see the Michigan lights or finish the east coast.
    Have been enjoying your ruminations (is that a word?) and am always amazed how often I have had the same thoughts. Perhaps all full time rvers have them!
    Take care and enjoy your winter in San Benito.
    Karen

    Like

    1. Hi Karen!
      Thanks for following along.
      WE love lighthouses (I suppose we’re like a lot of RV’ers and a lot of NON-RV’ers — there’s something special about lighthouses and the people of a different age who manned them). We were on the Coast for 10 months and saw most of them, for the second time. We did lighthouses about 6 years ago when we visited the Oregon Coast by Car.

      If you do the East Coast lighthouses you’re better than we. I’m not in a hurry to RV the East Coast. Just too many people for my taste. But who knows. Maybe some day.

      Ruminations is a fine word!

      Karen, part of my reason for blogging is to dispel a few myths along the way. RV’ers are just like other people. We process things the same way — we just often come to different conclusions. Some people think it’s perfectly natural to live in sticks & bricks; others of us prefer something different. There’s no right way to retire; there’s no right way to RV — but we all have similar battles, thoughts, challenges, and successes. It’s good to rejoice in them. It’s good to feel the oneness of other RV’ers. It’s good to realize that you aren’t alone in your battles, or your fears — we all have them.
      Thanks for the good wishes. We wish you safe and happy travels as well. Enjoy the desert SW and stay out of those Polar Vortexes!!!!

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  2. When traveling by car we stay at Comfort Inn and eat breakfast there. You can then pack a lunch to eat at a rest area so only have to go out for dinner. I have no idea if Canadian motels offer free breakfast, though.

    Like

    1. We often do Super8 which also have continental breakfasts. Packing lunches & picnicking are frequent choices. That said…. I’m a sucker for a Chinese resto or particularly good food anywhere. So I sometimes talk myself out of my better wisdom. 🙂

      > >

      Like

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