Saturday, March 15, 2008

Cuckoo for Cocopah

We are still at the Cocopah casino in Somerton, Arizona.

It appears that we could have (should have) spent another full week on the beach in Mexico, as we will certainly be here until at least Monday. The postal service has misplaced our mail.

The mail was sent from Washington on the 6th, so, by all rights, it should have been here on Monday, when we (deliberately) arrived to pick it up. It was sent Priority Mail, but even if it had only been sent first class, it certainly should have been here within a week, which would have been Thursday.

So Thursday we had PostNet on the phone, and they called the post offices in both Richland and here in Somerton, and there has been a mad scramble to find it, but so far without result. PostNet did admit that a fairly new clerk made two key mistakes in failing to request tracking (which is free) if not delivery confirmation, and also by failing to write "General Delivery" on the package. This latter item is not really an issue here at the tiny Somerton post office -- they'd have seen it by now even without the proper marking.

At this point, there are four possibilities. The first, which would be the best outcome, is that the Priority Mail label was either never applied or came off in transit, and so it is coming Parcel Post, which would allow the post office a good couple of weeks to get it here. The second is that someone along the way determined that the package was undeliverable as addressed, and has returned it to sender, which could take another week. The third would be that the package was completely misrouted somewhere along the line, and it is wallowing in the bowels of the postal service until someone realizes where it needs to go and sends it here. The fourth is that it has been stolen, which has been known to happen in the postal service on occasion.

In any case, we can not file a missing package claim with the post office until is has been 15 days, and we need to give them at least another week in case it is just delayed or misrouted. So it has turned out to be fortuitous that the Cocopah will allow us to stay here as long as we keep paying our $5 per three nights. We on our second trio now, and we'll have to pony up again tomorrow, since the post office here is closed today, so Monday will be the earliest anything else will happen.

On Wednesday I wrote here that we were out of water, and had to do some tankage rearrangement to extend our stay. Well, of course, the natural follow-on to being out of fresh water was that our waste tanks were also full, and so I had to do some rearranging there as well on Thursday night, so we could, umm, flush the toilet a few more times. When the mail failed to show up Friday morning, we headed off to the Yuma Elks Lodge, six miles north, to dump and fill.

The Yuma Lodge also has overnight RV spaces, and we thought about just moving up there. However, that would put us six miles further from the post office when the mail finally does arrive, plus we were already paid up for another two nights here. So we left the scooter and our chairs in this space while we went. We also made stops at Wal-Mart and Albertsons, which were both on the way, to reprovision. As it turned out, the spaces at the Yuma lodge are on a rather dusty dirt lot, and, at $7 per night, not as good a value as the fully paved spaces here at the casino. About the only advantage would have been more dinner choices within easy scooter distance (though still nothing walkable).

Ashamed to be an Elk

We are surrounded by a trio of fifth-wheels with Idaho and North Dakota plates. I have seen a couple of Elks stickers as well, so I know that at least some of these folks are "brothers." They've been sitting around in their lawn chairs chewing the fat, and these guys are loud -- we have, literally, started the generator to drown out their conversations inside our rig. And, I have to say, it has been a long time since I have heard the "N" word (derogatory term for African-American) used that many times in casual conversation. Such as: "...we'd better not have one of those for President, either."

They don't get out much, I figure. I'm guessing they don't have anything good to say about Hispanic Americans either. I'd have said something to these bigoted goons by now if we were planning on moving on. But they outnumber me, and I have to live with them for the next few days, and I'd really rather not have my coach or my scooter vandalized (and I don't put anything past people who think like this).

I find it ironic that these jerks are actually living, at the moment, on Native American soil and taking advantage of Native American hospitality. (And here, so close to the Mexican border.) I am sure Sitting Bull is rolling in his grave.


  1. I have had numerous problems getting general delivery mail since starting full-timing a year ago. Most of them due to my mail service. I ended up having two services: one that provides me with a home address and another for my packages and more important items. The latter one lists the contents of my mailbox online and has a very simple to understand way of charging for shipments.

    Did find out this last holiday season that it's best not to get general delivery mail sent to Pasadena or San Diego CA during that busy time. General delivery gets pushed to the bottom in importance in trying to handle local residents' Christmas mail. Hopefully this will not be the case in locations where there are a lot of retirees and snowbirds.

  2. I was quite surprised that you left your scooter behind, does that mean you have a general sense of safety in most parks that you are at?

  3. @~Dawn C:
    We never stay anywhere we don't feel safe. In three and a half years, we've declined to stay someplace 2-3 times because one of us had a bad feeling. Never have we felt in the slightest ill at ease in an RV park.

    The Cocopah Casino RV camping area is safe enough to leave a scooter parked alone in the middle of a parking spot. Other times and places we would lock the scooter to something solid. Sometimes we lock the scooters to Odyssey's front bumper overnight.

  4. Hope you don't have to stay to long but the new Love's Station I8 exit 8 has a dump. Yes the Elks is pricy for dry camping.

  5. The "ironie" of being on the road as we are is to escape the "malice" that, lets face it, will always be present. It is unfotunate that at times we still have to endure this side of non-civilized aspect of Humanity, this crude facet which even my dog is not aware of, only because we cannot camp somewhere else...
    All things must pass... this will too...
    Be well... Ara & Spirit


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