Friday, March 24, 2006

A lengthy update from Austin, Texas

We are at the Elks Lodge in Austin, Texas (map). This is a great location, for a variety of reasons:
  • It is just a block away from a bus stop with access to a variety of routes covering the city. Day passes are just $2, so we can explore Austin without moving.
  • It is on a bluff just south of downtown, and we have a skyline view from our deck. The skyline is also visible through the treetops from our living room.
  • Several restaurants are within walking distance, including Austin icon Threadgill's.
  • The lodge parking lot is discreet and quiet. We are the only ones here.
We arrived here Wednesday night, after stopping at the Red Cross technology maintenance center to scope out parking spaces, and the local Lowe's to repair our water valve (more on this later). Yesterday was a much-needed day of downtime -- we didn't leave the house, except to walk to Threadgill's for dinner (and many thanks to our good friend and former Austinian, Charles, who sent us a list of restaurants and activities here in Austin). We did spent a couple hours completing an on-line "Defensive Driving" class from the National Safety Council, since the certificate from that is a prerequisite for our upcoming Emergency Communications Response Vehicle (ECRV) training.

Our Schedule

One of the things I was able to do in our day of downtime yesterday was to go through the calendar, clean some things up, and nail down (insofar as possible) our schedule for the rest of this year. There are vast tracts of open, undecided time, which is the way we like it, but some of the endpoints are fixed and you can presume that the time in the middle is spent getting from point A to point B in some fashion. We've given this same schedule to the Red Cross, so any open times are subject to preemption by disaster response. Without further ado, we will be:
  • Here in Austin through April 9, when our technology training class ends.
  • In Gridley, California April 16-22 for ECRV training.
  • Either in Chico, California for the Escapade or in San Jose, California for a visit April 22-29
  • In Gridley again for more Red Cross Training April 29 to May 2
  • Unscheduled from May 2 through June 20
  • In Saint Louis, Missouri June 21-27 for UUGA
  • Unscheduled June 28 through August 24
  • In San Jose, California August 25-27 for our friend Carolyn's wedding.
  • Unscheduled August 28 to October 9
  • In Mexico October 10 through November 16, on an RV caravan. We enter Mexico at El Paso, Texas, and exit at San Diego, California
As we fill in the blanks for the "unscheduled" periods, I will post the updates here.


  1. We just got back from Mexico 2 wks ago. It was our first major trip with the bus, the bus is all finish but the stairs and the dash has to be recovered. We were gone for 2 months, with 1 month in Mazatlan. Make sure you move your mirrors, on your bus in as close to the body as possible if you want them to survive the trip. The roads are narrow for a 102 coach, the mexican busses are all 96 wide and alot of them are Mercedes.

    How long is your tour and does it take in Copper Canyon and the Baja?

    You'll love it down there...very freindly people.

  2. My folks took a caravan (Adventures I think) tour that looks similar to yours. They blogged about it on their website Look down to the bottom titled AVC Mexico Tour.

    We've spent the last two winters (9 months last year :)) and since Feb this year) in mexico. We love it here. :)

    We rarely boondock in parking lots, but in El Centro, we ALWAYS boondock at Lowes. Now I know why. :)

  3. If part of the last comment, above, seems out of place, it is because I edited the original post. The discussion of parking at Lowe's has been moved up two posts.


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