Every time we are in Palm Springs, we have to go to Ace Hotel. Thanks to Marlene’s parents who spend a week each year at their Palm Springs timeshare, the girls have associated the city with swimming. Ace Hotel is the perfect place to go for that. Their pool is open to everyone, guest or not, with a small daily use fee.
Being here near Palm Springs feels like we are already home. This is one of our go-to places for a getaway while we are home based and even though we are still technically full-timing across the country, it definitely feels like our trip is all but over. Officially, it will be in a couple of days but it is hard for us to make that distinction. We still won’t have a house to move into for a couple of weeks but we will be sleeping under a roof supported by walls sitting on a concrete foundation at Marlene’s parents house.
Last night we parked next to big rigs at the Flying J truck stop in Ehrenberg, Arizona. This is the same spot where we spent out first night as full timers back in 2010.
Today marks our 200th day on the road since we left Las Vegas. Technically we have been in the Airstream for much longer than that but the daily posts did not start for this trip until we departed from our 5-night hotel stay in sin city. We are getting very close to home and by the end of today, we will be even closer.
During one of our first visits to Tucson several years ago, we were introduced to the great Hotel Congress. Our friend Carrie use to live in Tucson and she acted as a tour guide and introduced us to lots of neat places in town.
We intentionally spent the night just short of Tucson last night in the town of Benson so we can go see one of the best preserved natural caves in the world. We found a Wal-Mart in Benson that had a no RV overnight sign but the manager had no problems with us being there. It is becoming more common to have cities and counties ban RV overnight parking in Wal-Marts.
Marfa is quite an amazing place to be this time of year. Something is different about the high desert in West Texas. We are only sitting at 4,600 ft in elevation but the lightness of the air and the special hue of blue in the sky makes you feel like you are much closer to outer space.
Our ordeal with the Texas Highway Patrol last night left me pretty riled and unable to sleep well for the rest of the night. If you don’t know what I am referring to, go read the end of this post and you will know what happened.
After our excursion in Austin yesterday, we actually found a Wal-Mart near the city that allowed overnight parking. At first glance, you wouldn’t think they would allow it because it is a smaller store. After we asked the manager inside, they gave us permission as long as we park in a designated area which we happily obliged.
Last night after we left Houston, we started to make our way towards Austin, Texas. At the town of Bastrop, 35 miles east of Austin, we passed the midway point of Ventura, CA and Key West Florida. We are now officially closer to where we started back in July 2012 than Hemingway’s polydactyl cats.
Our campground in Dickinson is located about 20 miles southeast of Houston. It is just about right in the middle between Houston and Galveston just a few miles away from Johnson Space Center. We intentionally found a spot there so we would be able to spend the day at the Space Center after we check out in a couple of days. Today, we are headed into Houston.
We found a Cracker Barrel last night after our failed search for a Walmart where the GPS asked us to exit an off ramp that did not exist. It took us further down the freeway in the town of Beaumont, Texas. We don’t really have any plans of staying here long except to meet someone we have been friends with online who happens to live in this town.