Saturday 22 November 2008

Sooooo Happy!

Most of the summer we didn't think we'd be able to travel at all this winter and would be stuck in Ottawa in the land of ice and snow! Now, here we are on the Gulf Coast of Texas, in a little RV park in a site right along the water with balmy breezes blowing. It's pure heaven!

Gordon was out for sunrise and saw flocks of roseate spoonbills flying over his head. That's the most spoonbills he's ever seen. More on that later.

I went for a long walk this morning. We're kind of in a little subdivision here so there are lots of streets to walk on and no traffic. When I took the trash out today I met another lady. She and her husband have been here for a month and she's bored and anxious to get to their park in Florida. It's true there isn't much out here but I just love being on the Gulf. We signed up for the week so will be here till Friday this week.

Palm trees from my morning walk

The pier here at the campground

Looking back at the campground and marina from the pier

The campground is having a potluck on Thursday at 1:00 p.m. so I've signed us up. They're providing the turkey. This is a nice little Mom and Pop type operation and everyone is very friendly.

We had to go in to get some groceries but especially to get some water. We had filled our jugs at the campground in Louisiana as they told us the water was ok to drink. It didn't taste bad but had a lot of sediment in it so I dumped it, cleaned out the jugs and got some good Culligan water. I went to the H.E.B. grocery to shop before going to Walmart as I wanted to see their prices and what things they have in their store. They do have a small gluten free section and I found their prices to be excellent. In lots of cases they had prices cheaper than Walmart.

Gordon went in search of propane and found a place but they are closed on Saturday - go figure! We'll have to look after that next week. It's not cold enough for the furnace to run at night so we shouldn't run out.

Then to Walmart and picked up a few things there too. On our way home we drove to the little fishing town of Indianola. Apparently in the 1800's it was the county seat but the land eroded away so the old town is now out in the Bay.

A building in Indianola

There used to be a fishing pier here

On our way back to the RV park we passed a field with a lot of water and there were lots and lots of birds - roseate spoonbills, great egrets, reddish egrets, and ibis all in one spot. What a find! We were so excited!

The Birds

See how pink the Roseate Spoonbills are

Back at the RV, Gordon got the TV dish set up. He had given up on it last night since he was so tired. He also got the BBQ out and browned the roast I bought for the crockpot. So we're settling in!

Friday 21 November 2008

Now in Port Lavaca, TX

We left Beaumont, TX at 9:30 a.m. The skies were clear but it was windy and 48F (9C). Below is a photo of the 'hidden lake' of the Hidden Lake RV Resort where we stayed last night.

We were traveling along nicely till we just got into Houston then the traffic backed up. There was construction in the area but as we found out there was an accident in the right lane on the bridge over the San Jacinto River consequently three lanes of traffic plus one lane merging onto I-10 had to go down into one lane! We were bumper to bumper for about 45 minutes.

We saw a lot of damage from Hurricane Ike on our way that hasn’t been repaired. Lots of blue tarps on roofs and lots of roofs missing or partly missing.

After we got on the Sam Houston Parkway (toll road) we sailed along. Not many people use the toll road.

We had looked on the internet at an RV park called Oceanside in Port Lavaca. We arrived there around 2:30 p.m. Not a place I would recommend. The sites are too close together and the park didn’t give me any warm and fuzzy feelings. I had also made note of another RV park called the Powderhorn RV Park & Marina which was only about 5 miles away so together with instructions I had from Google maps that I had looked up this morning and Miss Pinky we got here. It’s way off the beaten path and when I first saw it, I wasn’t impressed. We went to the office but no one was there. We were just getting ready to head to Rockport to Goose Island State Park when the lady came out of the marina and said they had one pull through - $25.00/30 amp full hook up. Gordon was tired so we decided to take it for one night. She said we could set up and then go in and pay her.

Photos of our site at Powderhorn RV Park

View out our side living room window

When I went in to pay she said we could stay for a week for $100.00 so that may be a possibility. I also saw that they had a great library in the rec hall so I went over there and gave them some books and also picked some up. They also invited us to have dinner with them but unfortunately the roast was already in the oven and he had put flour in for the gravy.

We’re here, we’re tired but glad to be almost at our final destination.

The cold front that went through last night also affected this area so our high today was only 61F (16C) and as is normal for us when we come to Texas the next week will be cloudy!

Thursday 20 November 2008

From Louisiana to Texas

We woke up to pea soup fog this morning so Gordon went out to Lake Martin to take photos. I stumbled my way on the loop around the lake. We didn't really start getting ready to leave till the fog cleared shortly after 9 a.m. so didn't get on the road till 10:50 a.m. By then it was 74F (23C). Today's trip was very boring on I-10, no really pretty things to take photos of.

There are however these pretty grasses that you see all over the south. Here they are separating the east and west lanes of I-10.

Here are some signs that I recognized the names of as we arrived in Beaumont. People from the rv-dreams chatroom live in these places.

It's hard to believe we've been on the road over a month now. We left our home base in Carleton Place, ON on October 14th!

We arrived in Texas around 1:00 p.m. We made it!

Here I am in front of the Lone Star at the Welcome Center.

There was lots of construction on I-10 as we got in to Texas. According to the couple who own the RV park here, Beaumont is booming and all the RV parks and hotels are full with construction workers. We were lucky that we got here early and got their only pull thru site. We are at Hidden Lake RV Resort which is a new RV park that just opened in April. It is Passport America. For $17.50 we got a full hook up, pull thru site with free wifi and cable TV. The park itself isn't what you'd call beautiful but it's functional. Their washrooms/showers are individual bathrooms which we like and they are very clean. Their laundry has only two washers and two dryers. The couple who own the park are very nice and accommodating. I'm not sure what the temperature here is but it's very nice and warm. We have our Fantastik Fan running and it's beautiful inside the RV.

Here's our site

And an RV park photo

I'm off to have a nice hot shower at the campground bathroom!

This is just an overnight stop so we only setup the bare minimum. We're off to Port Lavaca in the morning!

For Gordon's blog for today, click here.

Wednesday 19 November 2008

Getting Things Done

Although it was cold this morning it turned into a beautiful sunny day. I went out around 8 a.m. for my daily exercise, then came in for breakfast and my morning computer stuff.

I had a shower, changed the bed and got the laundry ready. Since we're probably staying at Goose Island State Park when we get to Rockport for a while I don't want to have to go in to Rockport and use the laundromat that I did two years ago. I'm sure there's another one, that was just the closest one.

Around noon I headed over to the laundry and no one was there so got that done in short order. I like to go around noon. Most people are home having lunch then. Seems to work pretty well. While the laundry was doing it's thing I took advantage of this swing (above) overlooking the lake that I've had my eye on since we've been here but it's pretty far from our RV just to come over to swing.

Mid afternoon Gordon went out again to Lake Martin. He also wanted to drive around some. I decided to stay at home and get some things done. So I vacuumed and washed the dishes. Women's work is never done!

Looks like I'll soon have 50,000 blog hits. Thanks everyone!

Tuesday 18 November 2008

Trip to Atchafalaya

Didn't feel the best this morning, my shoulder still hurt although it's gradually improved during the day. I just feel kind of blah! I did get out for my exercise.

I lay down and read and had a nap this morning and felt more human when I got up so we went for a drive to the Atchafalaya Welcome Center to see if there were any roads we could drive on to see the swamp area. The Atchafalaya Basin is the largest swamp in the United States. Unfortunately there are no roads that take you through the swamp. You have to do a swamp tour. We weren't up for that today so we drove around a bit. We didn't see anything really interesting but it was a nice drive around the area. Maybe next time we'll take a swamp tour. I'd really like to get in to see a real Louisiana bayou although I could do without the alligators, spiders and snakes!

There was a heron on the log with the turtles when we left today

The Atchafalaya Welcome Center

One of the swamp tour places.

To get to McGee's Landing, you have to go up over the levy, here's the road up.

And here's the levy. We didn't drive on it, just over it.

We got home mid-afternoon and I read again and lay down for another long nap.

Monday 17 November 2008

Back to Walmart

It was still cold this morning but warmed up to an absolutely gorgeous sunny day with a high of 71F (22C). Besides doing the loop around the lake this morning I also walked between two of the fishing lakes and around the end hoping I could walk around that lake but there's a ditch there that you can't cross. There was a great egret and a blue heron in the ditch so I scared them and they flew off.

My walking path this morning

The good news is that my ear doesn't hurt anymore but now it's moved to my right shoulder. Getting old sucks!

This morning I spent pretty much on the internet. After lunch we went in to Breaux Bridge to the local SuperWalmart and got some groceries and things and we also both got much needed haircuts.

Here are some turtles on a log that we saw on our way out of the park this afteroon.

It was so beautiful when we got back that I spent an hour sitting outside in my lawnchair with my book. Now this is the way it's supposed to be!

I think this is a Grebe of some kind.


Don't know where this smoke was coming from.

Sunday 16 November 2008

A Little Drive

Cccccold this morning, well it's been colder but I wasn't expecting 36F (2C) at this time of year in the deep south. Must be because we've arrived! Gordon went out to Lake Martin again for sunrise. There was even some mist on the lake behind us but I didn't bother with my camera when I went out.

This morning passed uneventfully and after lunch we took a drive through Breaux Bridge to Lake Martin. We walked a ways around it on a couple of trails. Here are some photos.

Downtown Breaux Bridge - yep, that's about all there is!

Lake Martin

Pathway along Lake Martin - the pathway is covered in straw - wonder if there are any snakes under the straw???

A house in the deep south


Turtle on a log

Wide trunk bottoms on some of these cypress

Another path we took

See the egret peeking out - just then we heard several rifle shots and the egret kept going into the swamp

Another swamp photo

Piggly Wiggly for Jenny

After that we drove to Lafayette to have a look at their downtown but it wasn't much so we filled up with fuel at 2.79.9 and headed home for a nap.

For those of you concerned about the pain I have in my neck/jaw area, it's definitely under my right ear. I've had this several times but it's usually more painful. It goes away after a while.