Thursday, November 19 – Friday, November 20
Bridget, Reggie, and I plan to stay in this campsite for two weeks or for as long as it remains peaceful, private, and quiet.
Soon after the crew and I settle into camp, we have a visitor!
A hummingbird buzzes over the blue mat past our door.
I should put up a hummingbird feeder. I open up the back of the Perfect Tow Vehicle and stare at the landfill contained therein. Hmm . . . Now where did I put that pole?
Several months ago while drifting the aisles of a dollar store I discovered a curved rod designed for hanging pots of flowers or whatever. Oh, here it is!
I also dig out the strawberry hummingbird feeder.
Soon I’m at the stove inside the Best Little Trailer heating water to make a four-waters-to-one-sugar solution.
The rod is shaped like a lower case h at the bottom. Using my rubber mallet I hit the horizontal part of the h until it the rod is driven well into the ground. After checking its stability — great! –– I fill up the feeder and hang it.
How nice. I can watch from my lounger.
In the afternoon another one appears and an aerial skirmish occurs above the feeder. I can’t tell who wins this battle for territory. I like to think it’s the original visitor. In any case, hummers are delightful visitors to camp!
The next day . . .
Our hummingbird friend makes several forays to the feeder from his perch in the ironwood tree at the edge of our camp.
(Photo at left is not mine; it’s a copyright-free download.)
I turn my lounger so I can watch him while he’s in the tree as well as at the feeder.
Apparently he has a favorite branch upon which to rest his little body.
His perch is a tiny twig that perfectly fits hummingbird feet.
After drinking his fill of sugar water, he returns to his perch which isn’t very far from where I sit. Bridget and Reggie are nearby on the mat, paying no notice. Then the hummingbird begins to sing!
What? I didn’t know hummers could sing!
Cornell’s All About Birds website describes the song I hear:
“Anna’s Hummingbirds have a distinctive song that is long for a hummingbird (10 seconds or more). It’s a series of buzzes, then a clearer, more tuneful whistle, followed by more emphatic chip notes; then the bird may repeat the whole set of buzz-whistle-chip sounds.”
Another visitor to our camp!
I’m standing at my folding table set up alongside the BLT, washing dishes in a basin, when Reggie jumps to his feet (jumps to his paws?) and stares at the leg of the table.
“What is it, boy?”
“Your camouflage usually works great, little guy, but not on this bright blue mat!”
I take a few photos and then move the crew away.
Horny the Toad soon disappears underneath the BLT. He’s visited us twice since we first met him. To see excellent, close-up photos and to learn more about the Desert Horned Lizard, click this link to Desert USA.
Reggie goes under the BLT.
“You better not be getting Horny under there, Reggie!”
~ ! ~
The crew and I have hung around camp for a few days. Typical of us. Today I feel like going somewhere.
“Let’s take a drive up to Midland and see a ghost town!”
Across the desert we go, heading northwest on straight Midland Road.
“Calcium carbonate is the active ingredient in agricultural lime . . . . It is commonly used medicinally as a calcium supplement or as an antacid.” — Wikipedia
I scan the desert for boondockers.
This is Bureau of Land Management land and you can camp for free as long as you’re one mile outside the border of the Long Term Visitor Area. However, I only see one camper all the way to Midland, a stretch of about 12 miles of road across acres and acres of flat desert.
It’s either a truck camper or a Class C, tucked way back from the road. Some areas of the desert aren’t appealing for camping.
The Big Maria Mountains are on our right.
I recall the book by Johnny Shaw that I enjoyed very much — Big Maria. A fun read!
We come to a rusted vehicle with a sign saying “Do not remove. Midland Historical Society.”
The road curves a few times as it approaches Midland, the ghost town. When I hear “ghost town” I think of false storefronts, the old hotel, the bank, the saloon . . . old-timey Western things. I’m all set to have fun taking photos.
The entrance to Midland sets a different scene.
One encounters a big “No Trespassing, Private Property” sign against a background of abandoned vehicles and various junk.
Fine with me. We’re leaving.
I turn the Perfect Tow Vehicle around and we head back to camp.
NOTE: I planned to write a post about Long Term Visitor Areas such as the one the crew and I are camped in at present (Midland). I’ve decided not to do that. Many questions, answers, and comments about LTVAs came in under the previous post. Rather than me repeating that information in a post, you can learn about camping in LTVAs in southwestern Arizona and southeastern California by reading the comment section under “Midland LTVA, Blythe, CA.”
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