We’re writing again from Tecopa CA where we’ve taken up residence for the winter. Not so much a change of plan as more a change in outlook. Normally, we’re quite positive about life and our prospects, and like many this year, we’ve had our spirits lifted by the election outcome. Yet we’re challenged by our perceptions of the economy. Nancy and I have debated at length our travel plans, various budget scenarios and family responsibilities. Perhaps like many, we decided that a cautious approach to spending was in order, along with serious reconsiderations for our travel plans and ways to reduce expenses/maintain income. We see it as trying to be realistic and not panicked by the very real drop in projected income. While stopped for an overnight drycamp and a soak at the Tecopa Hot Springs and armed with a resume, a smile and willingness to work I asked if they needed any help for the rest of the season. I was greeted with a “maybe, but you’ll need to check with the supervisor in the morning.” The long and short is here we are still after my first full week in the campground and hot springs operation business. Who knows where it might lead, but for the time being we’re both feeling relieved by reducing expenses because our site costs are included and it’s 40 miles to anywhere, increased income for a few months and daily hot springs soaks, a good area for bikes and hikes, and all of Death Valley to explore. Did we mention date shakes at the nearby China Ranch Date Farm?
We just spent the winter solstice and our 29th anniversary in nearby LasVegas, a long way from where it all began at our little cabin in the woods at Big Pond, PA. We’re not gamblers but did enjoy some good meals of Ethiopian and Thai food. We also did some food shopping, watched stormy clouds on the snow-capped mountains surrounding the LasVegas valley, enjoyed(?) the famous (and hideously inefficient) casino lights and watched the many families with children from around the world descend on our hotel (Circus-Circus) and the many family-centered activities available there. There was still a lot of gambling and shopping going on, too! We also had a great visit with old friends, Kim and Rick Swords, who are in town visiting their daughter’s family for the holidays. But, it's nice to back home where it's quiet and the stars are brilliant jewels in the black desert sky.
Happy trails, and holidays, too!