Archive for the ‘Autumn 2011’ Category

Trip to Pick up the Casita

Tuesday, October 25th, 2011


Casa Grande to Oklahoma City to Dallas to Casa Grande

September 16, 2011 to October 24, 2011

We left Casa Grande in the pickup to drive to Texas to pick up our Casita Travel Trailer.  We planned to visit our daughters in Moore, Oklahoma and Euless, Texas on this trip also.  We left Casa Grande and traveled east on I 10.  We decided to take a new and different route.  At Las Cruces, New Mexico we headed north on Highway 70 to Ruidoso, New Mexico. 

In Ruidoso, we found an excellent older motel. 

Arrowhead Motel in Ruidoso, New Mexico

Because our pickup was loaded with all of the household goods we would be tranfering to the Casita Travel Trailer, we wanted our motel room door to be close to where we parked the pickup.  The Arrowhead Motel is one of those old-fashioned motels where you pull your vehicle right up to the front door. It had been recently remodeled and updated so the room was comfortable, immaculate and quite nice.  We were very pleasantly surprised. 

Arrowhead Motel - a most excellent place to spend the night.

The motel also has a few RV sites all of which are under the watchful eye of the Arrowhead Motel Buffalo.

Arrowhead Motel has a few RV sites

Statue at Arrowhead Motel, Ruidoso, NM

We checked into the motel and then went into Ruidoso to find a restaurant for dinner.  We were in the mood for good ole’American food.  On the internet, we found a restaurant called the All American Diner.  That sounded like a good bet.  We set the GPS and drove to the restaurant.  Inside, the menu seemed to have just what we were looking for.  I wanted a BLT and Bob wanted a chicken-fried steak.  Unfortunately when the server came to take our order, she spoke no English.  She ended up having to go and get the cook, who spoke only slightly more English, to clarify our order.  After much pantimime we managed to place our order.  We had to chuckle over the fact that the owners of the “All American Diner” didn’t speak English.  The food was delicious, however, and the server learned two new words:  “Mashed” and “Potatoes.” 

Before leaving Ruidoso the next morning, we drove through Ruidoso Downs.

Ruidoso Downs Sign

Ruidoso Downs

Blue Ruidoso Downs Sign

We continued east on Highway 70 through Roswell, New Mexico. 

entering Roswell, NM

We drove into downtown Roswell to eat lunch in a small cafe and enjoyed seeing the alien-related businesses. 

As you probably know, following a number of UFO sightings around the U.S., something crashed near Roswell in the summer of 1947 during a fierce thunderstorm.  The next morning, a New Mexico rancher saddled his horse and rode out to check on his sheep.  He began to notice metal debris scattered over a large area.  Upon further inspection, he saw that a shallow trench had been gouged into the land and was struck by the unusual properties of the debris.   A couple of days later, when the rancher had occasion to drive to town, he reported the find to the sheriff.  The sheriff reported it to the Intelligence Officer of the 509 Bomb Group.  For the next few days, the debris site was closed while the wreckage was cleared.  On July 8, 1947, a press release stated that the wreckage of a crashed disc had been recovered.  Hours later the press release was rescinded and a second press release stated that a weather balloon had been mistakenly identified as a flying saucer.

Meanwhile, back in Roswell, a young mortician from a funeral home received calls from the morgue at the air field requesting small, hermetically sealed coffins and wanting information on how to preserve bodies that had been exposed to the elements for a few days.  On a trip to the base hospital, the young mortician saw a large piece of wreckage with strange engravings on it sticking out of the back of a military ambulance.  At the hospital, he was threatened by the military police and forced to leave.  The next day, a nurse who was a friend of his, told him about alien bodies and drew pictures on a prescription pad.  Within a few days, she was transferred to England and her whereabouts remained unknown.

From that day forward, the military tried to convince the news media that the object found near Roswell was nothing more than a weather balloon.

I was surprised at the size of Roswell.  I had the impression it was just a small, country town but actually it is a small city that has taken advantage of its notriety as the site of a UFO crash.

UFO Theater and Museum, Roswell, NM

UFO Landing, Roswell, NM

Out of This World Coffee Shop, Roswell, NM

Aliens on the street, Roswell, NM

Should you ever happen upon a crash site and have need of alien body bags – they make them here!

Alien Bags Made Here, Roswell, NM

Roswell Court House


We continued on east on Highway 380 to Haskel, Texas.  One other item of note was the difference in affluence between New Mexico and Texas.  In the same kind of country, the towns in New Mexico were dismal, the businesses all closed and everything looked dilapidated and sad.  As soon as you cross into Texas, there is much evidence of prosperity with small businesses looking busy, houses well maintained and a much happier atmosphere.  I don’t know what the difference is, but there are only a few miles between the towns so it must have to do with state regulations and taxation or something.

Another thing we have noticed over the years is that most counties in the midwest have awesome old courthouses.

Admiring another courthouse in the Midwest


At Haskel, we headed northeast to Witchita Falls and then took the I44 toll road into Moore, Oklahoma where our daughter lives.  Moore is just south of Oklahoma City.  It was dark before we arrived and I enjoyed watching the lightning striking above the clouds. It was quite a show.

We spent a week with our daughter and son-in-law, Toni and Jim.  Their new puppy, Tobi, and Patti spent the week playing and wrestling.  This is the first time we’ve watched Patti really enjoy playing with another dog.  It was very entertaining to watch and kept us laughing  the whole time we were there. 

Patti and Toby Play

and play

and play

and finally they rest

Also, while we were there, a severe thunder storm came through the area.  Oklahoma really knows how to put on a lightning show.  It was awesome to watch.

We left Oklahoma City on Sunday and drove south to visit our other daughter and son-in-law, Bobbie and Mark, in Euless, Texas (between Dallas and Fort Worth).  We enjoyed visiting them for a few days, and I appreciated Bobbie showing me how to groom Patti.

It turned out that our Casita was ready a few days early, so we headed down to Rice, Texas to pick it up.

Picking up the Casita in Rice, Texas

We spent the first few nights at a nearby Corp of Engineers Park on Bardwell Lake. 

Camped at Waxahachie Creek Park on Bardwell Lake, Texas

 It’s a good thing we did, because our furnace didn’t work right and we had to take the Casita back to the factory to have the furnace replaced.  Once everything was checked out, we moved over to our Thousand Trails Park at Lake Whitney, Texas.  I towed the Casita across the 65 miles or so to Lake Whitney and backed it into the campsite in only ten tries. 

Camped at Lake Whitney Thousand Trails RV Park, Whitney, Texas

We enjoyed a visit with our good friend, Pat and then headed west on I 20.  We made it to Monahan Sands State Park in Texas the first night.  Bardwell Lake and Monahans were a couple of the very first parks that Bob and I ever stayed in when we began traveling together, so they are special to us.

The next day, the horse was headed for the barn.  We drove on into Casa Grande and made it to Foothills West RV Resort by about 8 p.m.  It was a long day and a long trip. We are glad to be home for a while.

Casa Grande, Arizona

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011


Casa Grande

October 2, 2011

We left Oolagah and traveled down the toll road I 44 to Oklahoma City.  We headed west on I 40.  After a night in a rest area, we drove on to Amarillo where we stopped for a short visit with Bob’s sister, Inez and his niece, Jonda.  After a nice visit, we headed on west on I 40 to my favorite casino just west of Albuquerque – Route 66 Casino.  We spent the night in the parking lot and headed on west the next morning.  We spent another night in a rest area and we made it to Flagstaff the next day where we headed south on I 17 through Phoenix arriving in Casa Grande late that evening.  We set up in Foothills West RV Park after paying for a year’s lease.

The people in Foothills West are very friendly.  There is a nice pool, a hot tub, a laundry, a putting green, various courts, and a club house.  

Hot tub at Foothills West

Relaxing in the hot tub


The park is landscaped with many beautiful Palm trees.

Nice Palms at our new home

We bought a shed and with the help of the maintenance man, Ken, we put it together on our campsite.  Right behind the motorhome are two prickly pear cactus.  One evening, the full moon came up right over the cactus.  That’s our new shed on the right.

Moon over Prickly Pear Cactus

We won’t be here long as we have to make a trip back to the midwest.  However, there is always time to visit interesting sites.  A trip to Casa Grande Ruins is scheduled for sometime in the next week or two.