We escaped the madness and debauchery of Las Vegas weeks ago, but are still suffering from a lingering hangover brought on by staying in a city with the constant din of sirens, shouting crazy people and endless traffic. Thankfully we managed to stay cheap in Vegas with our Passport America club membership and other cheapskate methods. Here’s how we did it.

I wonder why people are always shooting at other people? Hmmm…

(Not) Leaving Las Vegas

Before we rolled into Vegas (without guns blazing), our main Arctic Fox window spontaneously shattered during our stay in New Braunfels, Texas. It’s crazy, nobody knows why it happened. So, in addition to Jim speaking at the 2014 Blog Paws Conference in Vegas, the other reason we had to stick around Sin City was for a replacement window that was supposed to ship to the local Northwood dealer (the manufacturer of our Arctic Fox), within the first two weeks after our arrival.
Read the rest of this entry »

Comments No Comments »

When we left Eureka, California in June 2007, we never wouldda imagined that seven years later, the road would go on forever (and the party would never end).

Jerry with Jim sporting his new trucker cap.

When we left, our Dodge Ram had 24,000 miles on it. Today it’s nearing 140,00 hard-driving, tow-haulin’, rock and rollin’ miles from the west to the east, north to south and back again. Oh the places this truck has seen!

And then there’s the Arctic Fox. Seven years later this 245N is holding strong and proof that it’s high resale value is worth every penny. I can’t say the same about some of the components that aren’t made by Northwood (more on that in an upcoming post), but for the most part this is one damn tough boondocking machine. We still love it, though we’re looking to get a slightly larger, 27′ Arctic Fox that can accommodate my growing jewelry business.

2007 Arctic Fox 245N almost as tough as Wyatt Ray

Finally, there’s us. Seventeen years married and still learning so much about life, each other, getting along in a small space and how to make the most of every day we have on this earth. The yin-yang groove is the way we roll and much like our permanent road trip, it’s a never-ending journey with unexpected twists that keep life interesting.

Jim, Rene & Wyatt: permanent tourists

The biggest lesson we’ve learned: The road CAN go on forever. Which path will you take today?

Cheers to 7 years full-time RVing!

Comments 4 Comments »

Anyone who thinks there’s nothing to see while driving across the Great State of Texas is a fool. If you look hard enough you can spend weeks visting oddball attractions in the Panhandle, like Jesus in a Box and Cadillac Ranch.

RV Pitstop at Cadillac Ranch, Amarillo Texas

Should you decide to venture far beyond the interstate, then an overnight stay in Littlefield is mandatory. This small dusty Panhandle town is just west of Lubbock. There’s not a lot to this place, which is probably why its most famous hometown hellraiser, Waylon Jennings, would tell folks he was from Lubbock.

Footprints of a Legend at Littlefield Texas City Park

Unlike our first Panhandle Pitstops road trip, this time we knew to slow down and stop to check out the only museum in America dedicated to Waylon Jennings, Waymore’s Drive-Thru Package Liquor Store and Waylon Jennings Museum.

Waymore’s Drive-Thru Package Liquor Store

As fans of both Outlaw country music and adult beverages, we were happy to stop and pay homage to one of the greatest musicians of all-time (yes, that’s right, now shaddup).

Waymore’s Drive-Thru Liquor Store LIttlefield Texas

This little family-run establishment was founded by Waylon’s brother James. On any given day you’ll find him, some other relative or friend of the family running the store and ready give to you a personalized tour.

Waylon Jennings’ first guitar

The day we arrived, Waylon’s niece was our hostess. She happily shared non-stop stories about his life and relatives with a lovely Texas twang that was so fast we only grasped about half of what she was telling us, but she was adorable nonetheless.

Clean-cut teenage Waylon Jennings: Who knew?!

Much of the collection was gathered from family garages and attics, some from e-Bay and some from who knows where. Capitalizing on the Outlaw music connection, they’ve even gathered cool relics like this custom stage jacket made just for Johnny Cash:

Can you feel the presence of The Man in Black?

There’s a pair of Waylon’s trademark “Flying W” boots. It’s obvious, don’t you think? Nobody can ever fill this cowboy’s shoes.

Boots Too Big to Ever Fill

Rumor has it that Waylon didn’t have a lot to do with Littlefield because of some feudin’ that happened between him and this side of his family at some point, but if there is some bad blood there, we didn’t get a sense of that at all.

Waylon Jennings Mural at the Drive-Thru Liquor Store

The cheapskate in me looking for signs that we were going to get hit up for money for this lovely tour. But nope, they weren’t asking for cash or trying to exploit their connection at all; this was just genuine friendliness from salt-of-the-earth people who are proud to be associated with Waylon.

Of course we couldn’t leave without buying something, so we picked up some cheap beer and thanked our lovely host for an unforgettable time.

Some people think Waylon deserves a fancy-pants memorial with more pizazz. After all, you can’t escape the irony of having a liquor store museum dedicated to a genius who died far too early from substance abuse issues. But so what, I say; Waylon was as real as it gets, and so is this one-of-a-kind Outlaw establishment.

IF YOU GO: Be sure to stop and stay at the free Waylon Jennings City Park. It has free RV camp sites for small to medium rigs, complete with water, electric and a dump station, all for a donation. And oh, it even has sanctioned horse-shoe competition courts!

Waylon Jennings City Park, LIttlefield Texas

Comments 2 Comments »

We dislike staying in RV parks for many reasons, but when we do need to plug into the grid, we seek out the most offbeat, weird places to stay in a RV. Out of every state in America, Texas has more than its fair share of quirky RV trailer courts, and Landa RV Park in New Braunfels is the mutha’ of ‘em all.

Look out, it’s Landa low bridges

Landa This, Landa That

Our Landa Love Affair began back in the day, when NuRVers was just a baby and consisted of a core-group of hard-partying, crazy, full-time, child-free full-time RVers. A live-and-let-live bohemian vibe made Landa a great place to spend winter. You could pretty much do anything you wanted to as long as your racket wasn’t louder than the hourly freight trains that run directly behind the park.

YouTube Preview Image

Through the years, NuRVers have come and gone at Landa, and the winter party scene is no more. Management has also kicked out most of the DIY-RVers that kept things interesting (but a few still remain).

Landa funky DIY RVs

Yet for some reason, Jim and I felt compelled to spend a month along the Comal River once again. After all, it’s ground zero for the awesome Texas Hill Country music scene, everything is within biking distance and the rent is cheap, so why not, right?

Landa RV dump station camping

The daily river toobing along this private stretch of the Comal River is awesome. Where else can you pay just $400 a month for rent and have a spring-fed, crystal-clear river at your back door? It just compels you to chill out!

Landa booze toobs

But the longer we stayed there, the more that Landa’s many quirks got on our nerves. Like the off-leash dogs who shit everywhere and tormented Wyatt.

Landa rat dogs crapping everywhere

Then there was the nosy neighbors who felt it was OK to inquire about my “relationship with Jesus.”

Landa trucks worth more than homes

The final straw was the neighboring family of five, who for some reason was allowed to rent a long-term spot while living in a pop-up tent trailer, despite Landa’s rules prohibiting non-self-contained RVs. Yes, there were five people living in there.

Landa misfit families

We’re not RV snobs by any means, and they wouldn’t have bothered us so much if the tween-aged kids weren’t rock-throwing maniacs (we think they were the cause of our mysteriously shattered RV window). And oh, if their mother wasn’t constantly screaming at the top her lungs for some reason or another.

All this piled on top of sleep deprivation from being awakened by train horns blaring at 3AM each night, got old real fast. When April was over, we couldn’t wait to leave. I’m not sure if we’ll ever stay there that long again, but if we do, the NuRVers crowd needs to have to hold a reunion so at least all of the partying will distract us from the Landa Looney Bin.

Landa cheap camping on the Comal River

So long Landa.

Comments 12 Comments »

The last time we made contact at the Very Large Array, our camera had just conked out after visiting the Trinity Test Site with our Atomic Dog Jerry.

This time around, with Wyatt leading us back from Texas to Vegas for the BlogPaws conference, we decided to take Highway 60 and hit up Pie Town again. I had actually forgotten about the VLA  until we were almost there.

I immediately remembered how cool it is! We didn’t get a guided tour like we did before, but stopping at the vista point was enogh to get a good dose of geek tourism. The pullout is large enough for a couple RVs, and there is ample warning. After all you can’t miss the dishes.

The place always reminds me of an old commercial featuring Ted Turner walking along the fenceline at his ranch. He mentions how his neighbor has been complaining, about his new set of dishes, as the camera pans to reveal a scene similar to this.

Ted likely had dish envy though. His were not nearly as large, nor would they likely reach as far! But there I go digressing again.

The Very Large Array is operated by the National Radio Astronomy Observatory.  The 27 antennae—each one measuring 82′ in diameter—comprise an interferometer providing the resolution of a dish 22 miles across! Mounted on rails, the dishes can be positioned across the across the mesa, close together or miles apart.

Without getting into interference and Fourier transformation of mathematical data to make interstellar maps, suffice it to say, this place is just pretty damn cool.

Geek or not, if you’re a full-time RVer who prefers to travel the backroads of America, this is one of the more amazing roadside attractions you’re going to see. What makes it even more cool, is that it’s not just some attraction, it’s actually in use every day, looking at the far reaches of our galaxy, and beyond.

Besides, it’s just down the road from some of the best pie out there on the open road!

Comments 3 Comments »

  • Be A Workamper

LinkWithin Related Stories Widget for Blogs