Thursday, February 17, 2011
Escaping the Snow
It turned out to be a really good idea that I stayed an extra night at the 7 Feathers Casino Resort's RV park. I used the time to get a little more organized before moving on. I spent several hours staying warm and cozy in the RV park's laundry room, getting a new batch of scarves ready to sell on eBay. I also did laundry and used the pool and hot tub again.
My second night out, however, was really, really cold. My propane heater still doesn't work (although my friend Dan says maybe the igniter just needs to be taken out and cleaned, so I will try that) and I had to sleep in multiple layers of clothes under lots of blankets. So when I woke up in the morning, I was really ready to head to California!
I went into Canyonville to pick up a space heater for nights when I'm hooked up to electricity. Both the guy at the hardware store and the folks at the natural foods store told me I would really, really enjoy driving Highway 199 to Crescent City, because the area is so beautiful, especially in the Smith River park areas. They were really nice people, but I think they underestimated the fear an inexperienced motorhome driver might experience while negotiating those hairpin turns in the driving snow. I was too busy being careful to enjoy the view very much. But, truthfully, I wasn't terrified--the snow was sticking to the road only a little bit at the various summits and passes, and the road was completely clear at lower elevations.
Driving down into Crescent City was kind of like a deliverance, though. The sun was shining a little bit and the ocean was so beautiful. I checked out the town a little bit and saw lots of expensive RV parks near the water. I decided to go north to the Lucky 7 Casino where they offered free RV parking. No hook-ups, but it was warmer here, so I knew I could handle it. I had some difficult moments getting my lights working--I still don't understand which switches do what--but eventually got that sorted out by trial and error. I also bought batteries for my Coleman lantern so I'll still have light even if I get totally confused with the house lights again.
To get free parking, I had to be a customer of the casino, so I played bingo at the Lucky 7 last night. I had no luck at all, but I met some very nice local folks. I told the cashier that I was fairly inexperienced at these complicated casino bingo games, and would she please seat me near some players who would help me out. So I played alongside Buster, a very nice and somewhat quirky guy who lines his part of the table with his lucky trolls before he plays.
I'm not sure I'll be able to keep up this bingo habit. So far I have not won a cent at the casinos. I haven't lost much, either, because I never risk much. But I do get tempted by oddball things, such as a slot machine I saw the other night that was called "Dolphin Treasure." My mind immediately went to, "Well, I have a Dolphin, and I bet I'd win on that one!" Yeah, right.
This morning, I headed south on Highway 101 and found out that I had not managed to escape the snow, after all! But again, it wasn't as bad as some driving situations I've been through in the past. Right now, I'm in Oreck, about midway between Crescent City and Eureka, at the really pleasant Palm Motel and Cafe, where the 80+ year old proprietor, Martha Peals, still makes homemade pies every day. Jerry, a friendly guy who lived in Eugene for many years, handles the front of the cafe and invited me to use the wifi here. I stopped in for breakfast, but I'm definitely taking a piece of Martha's pie with me for later in the day!
The post office is right across the highway, so I'm going to get some stuff mailed out while I'm here. I've sold four scarves on eBay so far during my travels, which is really good considering I haven't worked very hard on my eBay business for the past few weeks while getting ready to leave. I'll get them mailed out as quickly from the road as I would have had I remained in Eugene.
My next task while I'm online is to see if there's an affordable place with hookups where I could stay tonight. After several cold nights, I'd like a warm one, preferably with wifi so I can get that next batch of scarves listed on eBay. I have a couple of campground memberships, so I should be able to find something.
Sonja seems to be adjusting. She still doesn't enjoy traveling, but she's beginning to understand that this is her lot in life for the time being.