Roaming around town, finding “treasure”

Thursday, March 2

I’ve lost track of our days at our camp near Blythe.  I don’t remember what happened on what day . . .

Big Maria Mountains in the distance, southeastern California

Rather than attempt to reconstruct the past in a sequential time narrative, let’s sit back and have a little chat, shall we?

I’ll do all the talking . . . .

My new refrigerator is so cool!

Okay, I had to say that.

I’m amazed how long I’ve gone on one tank of propane since the new refrigerator has been put in place in the Best Little Trailer.

When the regulator switches over to the second tank of propane, I unhook the first tank and pop it in the back of the Perfect Tow Vehicle.

Reggie and I roll into Blythe.  We stop at Cosme’s Propane on the main drag and have it filled.

I just finished reading “The Girl With Braided Hair.”

It’s one of Margaret Coel’s books, part of her Wind River Mystery Series.  I enjoy it because I learn a little more about the Arapahoe and Shoshone people.  Also I recognize many of the  towns, roads, landmarks, and land forms she describes, having camped a few times in the Dubois-Riverton-Lander area of Wyoming.

Boondocking in Shoshone National Forest, Wyoming” — August 2014

While reading, I stop occasionally to open up my Wyoming Benchmark and locate those places I haven’t visited. . . . yet.   Now I have an urge to return to Wyoming!

The library in Blythe has several of the Coel books.

I return the first one and check out two more.

I love my Paperwhite, but I also like going to the library.

People who don’t have an e-reader say, “But I like holding a book in my hand!  I like turning pages!”

Well, just because you have a Paperwhite, like I do, or whatever, doesn’t mean you can’t go to a library and check out books.  A Kindle, such as my Paperwhite, is an important option for any book-loving full-timer, because a library isn’t always available and buying books to carry around in one’s rig is dumb.

Reggie likes going to the library, too.

He knows he will be given a chance to sniff the grass and cottonwoods next to the building. Along the sidewalk at the library is a bush almost as tall as I am and it displays dozens of these large, yellow blooms.

Wow! It’s like the tropics!

A few readers ask whether Reg and I will adopt another dog.

Honestly, I’m not sure.  The possibility does roll around in my mind from time to time.

In an effort to explore that possibility further, Reggie and I go to the Blythe Animal Shelter.  In fact, we go several times.  Reggie waits in the PTV while I go inside.

I have to steel myself for the walk between the two rows of pens holding the dogs. 

I appreciate that the big dogs are beyond another door.  Mostly those dogs are pit bulls and I do believe that when a pit bull pleads with his eyes, they are the saddest eyes in the whole world.

So I only check the cages in the first room where the little dogs are.

Even that walk is tough because this is a facility that euthanizes.  It’s impossible for me not to wonder what happened to dogs that I saw previously and who now are gone.  I hope their owners came for them.

Mostly the dogs are males and, if we adopt another, I’d like a female.  (Reggie is all the “man” I can cope with.)

Two days ago we return again to the animal shelter and I peer through the window of the door to the little dogs.

I spot one that seems “right!”

She’s a white chihuahua-mix, between one and two years old, with bright eyes and ears that stick up. 

Okay, now that you’ve scrolled down to see her photo, can we continue?  Thank you.

She’s also about the same height and size as Reggie. 

I inquire at the desk and the young woman tells me the dog isn’t adoptable for six days, in case the owner comes looking for her. Happily for the dog and her owner, they were reunited yesterday!

I hesitated to tell you about this because I don’t want to be inundated with suggestions on how to look for dogs or that you’ve found the perfect dog for us.  Believe me, I know all the ways to search.  I don’t want to feel under pressure which might force a decision.  Let’s see what the future brings, okay?

Reg and I toodle over to Sheltering Wings Thrift Store.

Not that I need anything or even want anything.  We’re in town so might as well take a look, right?

A strange thing happens.  If you’ve read much of my blog you know that I don’t shop much.  Before I make any purchase I make sure it serves a necessary function.  I don’t want to clutter up the BLT with “stuff.”

That’s why it’s weird what happens at the thrift store.

I’m browsing around and come across these collector china plates from numbered firings.  They’re in excellent condition, three of them with gold trim.

I’m really drawn to these plates!

Enjoy this impromptu art show . . .

“In Display: Ruffed Grouse” by Darrell Bush

~ ~ ~

“Morning Light: Bobwhite Quail” by Darrell Bush

~ ~ ~

“The Green-Winged Teal” by Bart Jerner

~ ~ ~

“A Jump Into Life: Spring Fawn” by Carl Brenders

~ ~ ~

“The White-Tailed Deer” by Paul Krapf

~ ~ ~

“Not This Year: Mule Deer” by Paul Krapf

My photos don’t do justice to the paintings. 

The color and contrast is off and all the detail doesn’t show.

Well,  anyway . . .

I set the plates down and leave the thrift shop.  Reggie and I return to camp.  I think about the plates several times before the next morning when I toss Reg into the PTV and, yes, we return to the thrift store.

Why am I compelled to buy these plates?  I’ve never collected anything in my life and I’m going to start now? I’m not going to hang them on my walls.  Crazy!

The woman at the register watches me as I examine each plate again. 

I must be getting old.  Older.  Whatever.

I ask her if the boxes and certificates of authenticity might be somewhere in the back.  She smiles knowingly and tells me they were donated on hangers, not with the boxes.

She adds, “If you buy them all, I’ll only charge you $2.50 each.”


Now tell me . . .  What in the heck am I doing with six china plates?



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Camping Lantern
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Big Berkey Drinking Water Filtration System
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Renogy 2000Watt Pure Sine Wave Inverter Charger with 4 Outlets

End of another day


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199 Responses to Roaming around town, finding “treasure”

  1. BadgerRickInWis says:


    • rvsueandcrew says:


    • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

      Congrats on being first……. missed you!

      • BadgerRickInWis says:

        Awwwwww, love you too.

        But I’m still here and will always follow. Just not commenting as much. Changes the past few months have made me rethink my retiring early and full timing dream so I’ve been trying to focus on other priorities. But this place and all my friend will always be in my heart.

        • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

          DeGin got a Prius and was inquiring about..CAMP STOVES….right up your alley in expertise!
          A single butane stove, dual gas vs propane.

          As long as you’re still lurking… 👍

          • BadgerRickInWis says:

            Oh you little temptress. You do know how to lure me in. 🙂

            DG, if you see this first contragts on the Prius. I’ve been thinking about you and wondering how you were doing.

            RE camp stove, if your in a Prius you want to keep everything as small and simple as possible. So first choice would be a MSR Pocket rocket. Fairly cheap, bombproof, single burner that folds up so small you can hide it in your fist. The small ISO/propane tanks can add up money wise however (around $7.00 small tank.) So if long term cheap is #1 objective a 2 burner such as a Coleman Triton runs on the larger propane canisters that you can frequently find at a dollar store.

            Also CinJ mentioned dual gas. I assume you mean the ISO/propane tanks VS straight propane. The advantage is of ISO is cold weather so I know you well enough to know that that’s not gonna be an issue ya. Love ya always.

            • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

              Hook line and sinker! Hah I’m kidding.
              Thanks for da info….I like the “bombproof” feature….

            • DesertGinger says:

              I will check out the MSR pocket rocket. I was thinking of a Coleman butane one. You can get a dozen butane canisters for $25 through Amazon. They supposedly last about 1.5 hours so I’m thing I could get a few used from each can. So that doesn’t seem too expensive. What do you think?

              Been thinking about you Rick; happy to see you. Hi Cindy!

              Yes I’m very excited about my Prius! Just got window screens that are like black mesh socks that fit over the door frame, so you can have windows up or down and still block bugs and view. And I got a 19 qt Engel cooler, which the reviews said keeps ice as good as a Yeti and was much lighter and cheaper.

              I’m hoping I will get doctor ok to take off in May.

    • Lucy says:

      I truly had a good laugh reading: ‘ Now tell me…what in the heck am I doing with six china plates ‘ ? LOL. I thought exactly the same way U did !!
      Well what the heck…U can enjoy them while they are in one piece, or you could give’m as presents to a couple of friends.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        I know! Craziness! I’ll pack them away, unpack them once in a great while, enjoy them, repack them, and, like you say, maybe they will be a perfect gift for a friend. Of course, now that I blabbed about them here, that friend will know the gift cost all of $2.50. Hahaha!

  2. Tammie Villanueva says:


  3. Linda from Oregon says:


  4. Retiredcajunlady 'N Louisiana says:


  5. Suzicruzi from Van., WA says:

    Lovely photos and story-telling. You make me feel like I’m there! Smooches to Reggie!!

  6. Terri From Tx says:

    No comments here. Am I first?

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Nope. That’s okay, Terri. There will be another post, another chance at greatness.


  7. Val R. Lakefield Onario says:

    You got a deal, the plates would be $5 ea in our LAWS thrift shop. :-). You could just pack them safely away in the van and use them if you acquire a permanent residence some day.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Val… Yeah, who knows, maybe I will. Or maybe I’ll give them to someone. Or maybe I’ll break them on a bad road.

  8. rvsueandcrew says:

    Gotta’ go spend time with Reggie. Talk to y’all later! Sue

  9. Mary says:

    enjoy them.

  10. eliza says:

    Well, we bought the big berkey water filtration system and WE AREN’T EVEN ON THE ROAD. Just happened to think of you while deciding to improve the water in our stationary home.
    And the plates are cool. You can use them with joy. I’m sure chicken tastes better on a grouse plate.
    I loved this post for some reason. Thank you.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, eliza, and thank you for shopping from here.

      Nope, can’t eat chicken on the grouse plate. These plates are for “show” only.

  11. Terri From Texas says:

    Wonderful plates! I took alot of my Moms little tea cup plates and hung them on
    the wall in a pattern in my kitchen. But I know you cant do that in an RV. There may really be a reason you bought those. Hang on to them and maybe it will present itself!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s what I figure, Terri. I was really compelled to buy those plates. And I never buy stuff like that, not even when I had a house.

  12. Susan says:

    I have a bunch of collector plates that I had bought over the years for my Mom who used to hang them around in the kitchen. Now that she passed, I am trying to decide what to do with them. I have some hanging but realy need to get rid of most of them as I am looking now to buy an RV to live in. One of the many things I have to get rid of. Ugh…
    But, you bought them because they made you happy to look at. So, if something makes you happy, I guess its all good.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Susan,

      I spent some time researching the plates I bought and the artists. I saw that one of the plate is up for sale at $45. Of course it has its box and certificate. That got me thinking about ways to make money that we talked about under a previous post.

      I remember meeting a woman when camped near Ajo a few years ago. She had bought a large quantity of some kind of Avon boxes for next to nothing. She put them up on etsy or craigslist or some place like that and was selling them for a lot more than she paid for them. She said she was making quite a haul on those boxes.

      If you don’t plan on keeping the plates in the family or give them to friends, you might take photos like I did, and post them for sale.

  13. Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

    Ah ha! Top Ten for me!!!

    • Renee Galligher - Idaho says:

      Ok. Now that I’ve posted, to ensure my Top Ten spot, I’m commenting. Interesting and riveting post. As for the adoption, well, I’m not advising. We have always had three dogs, but when my beloved Missy, a Maltese, died at the age of 18 in 2014, that was it for me, at least for now. I still can’t bring myself to look for another. Someday, but not yet.

      As for the plates, well, whatever makes you happy. I have to say though that the “bull in a china closet” somehow came to mind having China in a boondocker’s RV. Or maybe that’s “china in a bull’s closet”. Please don’t take that as me calling you a bull! But china in a roving rig, will take special care. Enjoy to your heart’s content.

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Hi, Renee,

        I have the plates wrapped in newspaper. Before we hit the road again I’ll pack them better, maybe with bubble wrap, to keep them from breaking.

        Yeah, you need to be ready to open your heart to another pup.

  14. Deena in Phoenix, AZ says:

    You have a way with the words…such a joy to hear the ping of the phone and find a RVSue arrival notice…Reggie is fun to see in his coral jacket, as is the yellow of the flowers, blue of sky and I knew by the lovely red checker background that the plates came home to the BLT. Life is an adventure…Have a great day.

    Deena and Miss Mollie

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I hope you and Miss Mollie are having a great day, too. Thanks for the nice note, Deena.

  15. Retiredcajunlady 'N Louisiana says:

    Oh, those gorgeous yellow blooms!! Like living sunshine. Sue, I do so understand about adopting another crew member. Only YOU will know when you have the right pup in your sights. And only you and Reggie…yep, he has to love her also…can make that decision. You are so right to take your time…and let time determine when all things are just right!!

    I haven’t been reading nearly as much lately as I am crocheting summer tops and shells and searching for more summer patterns. has their cotton blends on closeout sale right now. And I do love the yarn in sport weight!!! I hope you don’t mind me posting the website, but I know Pauline also does crocheting and thought she and other leisure needle art fans might want to know.

    Those plate!!! Absolutely gorgeous!! Have you researched artists? Would be interesting to know more. Ok…now I have this mental vision in my wandering brain…Sue and her plates on Antiques Roadshow!!!! And they are worth $10,000 a piece!!! And you have this wonderful nest egg for your exit plan….but, you enjoy traveling in your Casita so much, you just stay on the road. LOL Ok, will stop.

    Thank you for such a delightful post today. Belly rubs, hugs, and ear scratches for Reggie and prayers for you both…and all homeless pets–may they all find loving homes soon.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Retiredcajunlady,

      Your dream is funny. I imagine a caravan of plate collectors following the BLT down the highway, heads out windows, “Stop! I want those plates! Let me make you an offer!”

      I did research the plates. They aren’t worth $10,000. Just so you know. Ha!

      The link is fine. Like you say, others may be interested in the closeout sale.

      Thanks for writing, rcl.

      • Retiredcajunlady 'N Louisiana says:

        LOL Well, those plates are gorgeous!! And definitely would look amazing on someone’s wall as a collection. And you’re so right about folks offering to buy them. They may not be worth thousands, but I am sure you could make a great profit on them.

        I have a small lemon juicer and small plate made of depression glass (pink) that I bought for less than a dollar years ago. I mentioned to the seller what it was, but she wasn’t interested. I didn’t feel bad about the price after I tried to tell her what she had and she ignored me.

        Take care!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          It’s up to the seller to know how to price items. If the seller doesn’t know or care, all the better for the buyer! Depression glass can be hard to find. Well done!

  16. Oh I love it! Six China plates. We were just at a thrift store in Ajo dropping something off. I looked around and said, “why am I looking?” I don’t even have room for the things I thought I could use from home.
    We just passed our four month anniversary of full-timing. I feel like it became real this past month. We spent a month in an Rv park because we needed to be able to rest and regroup after five months of downsizing and selling the house and another three months after we went to Texas to get the casita visiting friends and family during the rainiest season in a decade. A month in Ajo healed us and we are now boondocking again.
    Your blog always keeps in entertained. Before we left the Rv park we met a dog named Chet and I said, “oh, it’s a Reggie dog.” Looked just like the famous Reggie.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Congratulations, Martha, on your four-month anniversary of full-timing! Yes, sometimes one needs to stop and rest before heading out again. I’m glad you made it to Ajo.

      “A Reggie dog”… 🙂

  17. Rob, in Pensacola today! says:

    If I bought the plates I’d use them for dinner… but I’m a guy! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Rob!

      No, no, no….

      Printed on the back of a plate: “Art object — not for food use. Rare pigments used for colour fidelity may be toxic.”

  18. Linda, Muffin, Molly, Midgy Carmichael, Ca says:

    I’m still wondering what you’re going to do with those plates. Let us know how long you carry them around.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m still wondering, too, Linda.

      I hope you’re doing okay these days. Time will help, along with the love of Muffin, Molly, and Midgy.

  19. Phillis from Mississippi says:

    Everyone needs something to dust

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      And yet there are those who manage to go their entire lives never dusting a thing. Not fair!

      Hi, Phillis!

      • Pat from Mich. says:

        The secret to not dusting is to never move anything. It’s when you move something that the lack of dusting shows up.

  20. Tammie Villanueva says:

    Hi Sue and Reggie

    I’m not first but I’m second☺….. I love the china plates you bought and hope you find the perfect play mate for Reg.

    I have a book for you by Joyce Meyer
    “Battlefield of the Mind.” It’s good, gets you thinking.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Tammie, for the sweet hope and for the book recommendation. I’ll put that title on the list I carry in my wallet.

  21. richard says:

    It does not matter , as long as your happy with the plates. long time reader . Take care Sue and Reggie.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks for being a “long time reader,” richard. I’m happy to see you here, blogorino…

      You’re right — What’s it matter… 🙂

      You take care, too.

  22. Jean in Southaven, MS says:

    I love the yellow blooms. Are they on a tree or bush? So pretty. I like the plates also. I am trying to get rid of all my nick nacky stuff, but those are very pretty. Sometimes you just have to have something that makes you happy. Everything does not have to have 10 uses. I hope you keep at least one out to look at all the time, so you can feel the warmth.

    I am sorry that you did not get the little female dog. She sounded just perfect. But there is no hurry. You took your time finding Reggie and he is perfect. The perfect little girl will come your way when the time is right.

    I am going to be in Toronto, Canada starting Sunday on vacation. I am going from hot to cold. There is something wrong with that picture I think. But, only time could get off and want to go to Niagara Fall. Take care and thanks for the pictures and story. Always add something good to my day to hear from you.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Jean,

      Those yellow blooms are on the bush that can be seen in the photo of the library. That photo was taken after the bush was trimmed so it doesn’t have as many blooms on it as when I took the other pic.

      Good for you! You want to see Niagara Falls so off to Toronto you go! Have a fantastic vacation, Jean. All the years I lived in New York state (over by the Vermont line) and I never went to the Falls.

      Always nice to hear from you…. Tell us about your trip when you return!

  23. Marieta says:

    LOL over your plates. I can relate to your feelings. I have 8 plates from Bradford Exchange of Boston Terrier pups. When you figure out what to do with yours, let me know. Somebody somewhere said they are worth money, but so is everything.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Marieta,

      If you have the certificate of authenticity and the plates are in great condition, they may be valuable.

      Ha!… “when you figure out what to do with yours.”….

  24. jo says:

    Hi Sue. I like reading a book during the day and my e reader after dark so I don’t need to turn on a light when dry camping.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, jo! That’s what I like about the e-readers — reading in the dark with only starlight and moonlight through the window.

      I’ve given up on trying to read paperbacks after dark under my LED lights. I’m not at the Large Print stage yet, but I do like a font that’s comfortable to see. Sometimes I enlarge the font on my Paperwhite . . . . another neat feature!

      • jo says:

        I use a Nook and enlarge the font also, sometimes making a 350 page book into 800 pages which always makes me smile for some reason 😉 I enjoyed reading your post today instead of reading days after you post when I have internet reception- that’s why I don’t often comment.

        You might remember I sold my home in San Diego last May, bought a Casita and have been totally enjoying full-timing ever since. I wanted to go to Midland for a time this winter but didn’t want to appear to be following you, even though I would NEVER approach you as I protect my privacy as much as you do yours. Maybe next winter I will check it out. Thanks for being my guide and inspiration this past year as I readied myself for this amazing journey. I am truly living my dream!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Thank you for reminding me who you are, jo. I can’t keep people straight in my mind. Your details helped a lot! Gee, you should’ve come to Midland. I may act like it’s my personal property but it’s not. 🙂

          Midland is a big place where you can park away from other RVers. I do appreciate you wanting to protect my privacy though.

          I’m thrilled that you are living your dream and finding the journey “amazing.” This time of year, as I open my Benchmark atlases, I feel like I’m at a huge buffet table, trying to decide what delicacy I’ll put on my plate (gee, talking plates again!). I bet you know what I mean — Where will I go this year? 🙂

          • jo says:

            Yes! I do know what you mean. My benchmarks now give me a such a feeling of excitement, like my seed catalogues did for so many years when I was planning my springtime vegetable garden. After a whirlwind summer and fall traveling from Rice to Utah, Wyoming, South Dakota, Montana, Idaho, Washington, Oregon and the Eastern Sierras and now wintering in Arizona,

            I have come to appreciate letting a place grow on me. I plan on spending most of the warm months this year in northern New Mexico and southern Colorado. I use to tent camp there and have fond memories of fishing in the mountain streams. But it will be difficult to stay away from Wyoming after the amazing wildlife experiences I had there last summer-so who knows? I am grateful for the freedom to choose where I want to be.

            How about you? Where will your wanderlust take you?

            • rvsueandcrew says:

              I don’t know where we will go this summer. So many choices.

              Seed catalogues… It is a similar feeling!

  25. Lauri says:

    Yup! You’re weird!!!

  26. Toni Stagg says:

    I am always eager to find something new to read so I ran right over to Amazon to look at Margaret Coel’s books! I’m looking forward to reading my first book in the series. And I must say that I know how hard it is to walk the hallway in a shelter that euthanizes and even those that don’t! I always feel like I need to take everyone home with me. It’s hard to look into those eyes. I’m glad that little one’s owner found her.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I hope you like the book, Toni. From what I can tell by reading the book jackets, it doesn’t matter what order you read the books. I hope not because I didn’t pay much attention to which ones I pulled off the shelf.

      I checked out “Drowning Man” and “Eye of the Wolf.”

      Thanks for going to Amazon from here!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hello again, Toni!

      I see the Wind River Mystery you bought on today’s Amazon orders report.

      I followed the link to look at the book you chose, “The Eagle Catcher,” and I saw that it is the first in the series. I didn’t know there was a sequence… Thank you!

  27. Stephanie Albany OR says:

    Your post was easy to read and as always, entertaining. I was going to suggest just using the plates but may not be safe depending on how they were made/fired. But enjoy them whatever you decide. It may be like me with handmade glass beads. I have made jewelry with some but others I just like to look at. The art, the talent they represent and the beautiful colors. So I buy them and when the mood strikes me, I take them out and just enjoy them. Bottom line, enjoy your pretty plates.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I like your attitude, Stephanie, about the handmade beads.

      Yes, I will enjoy the plates. The ones that drew me in the most were the first two (above). I’m guessing they touch some memory from childhood in snowy, upstate New York. The others I bought because I couldn’t turn down the 50-cent discount! haha! I do like them, too.

  28. Sharron says:

    Use the plates and enjoy!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sharron,

      If you mean eat off the plates, no, I won’t do that! The pigments could poison the food. I’m assuming that wasn’t your intent when you wrote your comment. LOL

  29. I LOVED the Wind River area and hope to get back up there this summer. I suppose it’s dumb to hope it hasn’t changed too much, as the last time I was there was in the mid-70’s. Yeah, right.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, JanisP,

      I bet a lot about the Wind River area is the same… the mountains and streams… gorgeous!

      Downtown Dubois suffered a fire a year or two ago. That was after we were there. Probably rebuilt by now. I’d also like to return.

  30. This isn’t about plates *or* finding new friends but per your tank swapping ritual. On our 20yo fifth wheel, we were doing the same thing with our tanks but one time I didn’t reinstall the newly-filled tank right away and for some reason our reefer wouldn’t stay lit. I couldn’t hear a leak but I could smell the leaking propane — out by where our tanks go — and sure enough, there was a very slight leak (I could feel it with my thumb and kinda’ hear it when I was that close) from the no-tool (big knob) fitting where there was no tank. We found a tank(!) alongside the road (full of propane even!) so now we pull out the empty one and immediately install the found (and full) one — no leaks — and the reefer stays working while we’re gone. 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s interesting, Jim. Did you close the valve all the way when you removed the tank? And was the regulator pointed toward the full tank?

      Excuse my questions …. Sometimes the obvious is overlooked. I’ve never experienced the fridge turning off or propane leaking when only one tank is hooked up.

      I’m curious if any other RVer has something to say about this…
      to distinguish whether it’s something peculiar to your rig or if it applies to all propane systems on RVs.

      • Pat from Mich. says:

        Spiders love propane and will crawl in an uncapped hose and spin a web. I suppose, if that happened, then when you closed he knob, there could be a slight leak from the spider web in the works.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Well, those dang spiders better work fast because it doesn’t take me long to get the tank filled and return. 🙂

  31. Sarvi in OR says:

    I often think about what kind of canine companion I will have when I go full-time. My dogs right now are 8 and 11 years old, so will be long gone when I make the transition. I think what I may do, is go to a shelter and ask to see the dog behaviorist/trainer BEFORE looking at ANY dog. Talk with them about what I want in a dog; what kind of temperament, size, gender, etc, and ask them to show me a dog that fits that description. I’m too much of an animal lover, and I fear that if I walk into a shelter and fall in love with how a dog looks, I’ll be too tempted to try to force their personality with my way of life instead of the opposite.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Sarvi,

      Animal shelters have behaviorists? The shelters I’ve visited, and I’ve been to many over the years, do not offer the kind of personal attention you describe. You’re pretty much on your own when you go to look at dogs. If you know shelters that do offer those services, that’s great!

      Another method is to research breed characteristics online and become familiar with dogs you meet during daily life that appeal to you. Take the time to stop and interact with the dog and its owner. Ask questions. Then when you enter a shelter, have “qualifications” clearly set in your mind.

      Here are mine at present, subject to change:

      Near Reggie’s size and height (and not going to grow bigger!)
      Alert, good temperament
      Smooth coat, no long hair, low maintenance (no grooming appts.)
      Chihuahua, rat terrier or other small terrier
      No dachshunds
      No all-black dogs
      Mixes preferred over purebred

      • Sarvi in OR says:

        There are a couple shelters near me that have behaviorists (maybe their official title and/or duties are different, but they work very closely with the dogs, know their temperament and work well with matching). I recently went with my son and daughter-in-law to a shelter in Salem; the shelter’s behaviorist worked with us for probably 2 hours trying to match a dog with their current dog. We left there without a new dog for them, but knowing that they were not going to be picking a dog that wasn’t a good match for the dog they already have.

        The dogs I have now, I absolutely LOVE them to death, but will NEVER get those breeds again. My husky mix is a sweetheart, but I had no clue of a husky’s needs before I got her… she was just a cute little 8 week old puppy. My chocolate lab (purebred), at 110 pounds and 8 years old still thinks he’s a little puppy and will never mature or calm down.

        My next dog (which I will not get until my current ones have crossed over the rainbow bridge) will be between 20-50lbs, past the puppy stage, preferably have some basic training done, low-key, no high maintenance (no groomer appt’s here either!), and not the type that will bolt the second a door is open (rules out huskies!). I still have a few years before I go looking, so my list may change or adapt as time goes by.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          I guess I haven’t come across behaviorists/trainers because the shelters I’ve visited have been government (county facilities) and located in rural areas. Two hours of attention… That’s fantastic! That’s the kind of service one receives from topnotch rescue organizations.

          Reggie is the first dog I’ve ever adopted who is a breed with which I had no experience and very little knowledge. However, his foster dad provided me a lot of information on Reggie’s temperament and behaviors which gave me the confidence and understanding to take the plunge and bring him home.

          As we grow older, our choice of breed changes. Also when our lifestyle changes. For instance, I love pointers. I don’t hunt but I love them! I like the way they behave, their intelligence, the way they run, the smoothness of their coat, how they can curl up in a big cuddle on a couch. I enjoyed fostering a few pointers. A pointer would be an absolute disaster for me, at this point in my life, with this tiny home and traveling.

          I like smooth coated dogs that are self-cleaning like my original and present crew. Even after playing in the mud, the dirt falls off. I’ve never given Reg a bath and look how clean he is!

          I enjoyed your comments, Sarvi. Your approach to choosing your next dog is smart and kind.

        • DesertGinger says:

          Sarai remember that dogs who don’t need grooming don’t need haircuts because they shed their hair. I had a Jack Russell who shed pounds of hair, now I have a yorkie/bichon mix who doesn’t shed but her hair gets long and curly. So if you don’t mind shedding….

          • rvsueandcrew says:

            Grooming appointments are no big deal when living in a stationary home. A full-timer would likely find it difficult to keep up with the appointments, especially if wanting to avoid groomers with whom the dog is unfamiliar. Not all dogs that don’t need grooming shed a lot… Reggie’s fur is very short and shedding is minimal. Maybe because he’s JR mixed with chihuahua?

  32. Reine in Plano when we're not camping says:

    Ain’t it grand when you’re financially secure enough that you can buy something “just because”. You bought the plates because they bring you joy. That’s enough reason.

    I read an article that said one of the things that diminishes the enjoyment some folks have in retirement is that they’ve saved and scrimped for so long they forget that it’s now OK to spend a little for fun. And some folks go overboard in the spending. You’re found the balance so enjoy.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You always write such wise comments, Reine. And you affirm my choices. . . Thank you!

      Yes, it is grand. 🙂

  33. Bud (N E Washington) says:

    Hi Sue, I am getting things ready so I can go on the road and enjoy this beautiful country. In response to “getting old or older” I prefer to tell people I am getting more mature. I enjoy your blog.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Bud! Good to see you here! I’m pleased you enjoy what you find at RVSue and her canine crew.

      Do you have a launch date set or is it still too far away?

      • Bud (N E Washington) says:

        It will be sometime in early summer, the sooner the better!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Oh, that’s great! You don’t have long to wait. I hope you will keep in touch so we can all cheer when you have lift off!

  34. Pat from Mich. says:

    Years ago, I found 2 sets of blue bowls at a Salvation Army store. I think they are Japanese, they are decorated very prettily. I didn’t need bowls then. It took half an hour to talk myself into buying them at $4 a set. Now, they are my most used bowls! And I still have all 8! Though there are a few chips over the years.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Cute story and true! That half-hour you spent indicates how much you liked those bowls. 🙂

  35. 11Blade says:
    You might have to find the next Antiques Roadshow and have those plates appraised professionally.

    From the biography link above, “Two of his lithographs hang in the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library. His work was also part of a special reception at the prestigious Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Celebrities such as actor Burt Reynolds and animal expert Jack Hanna also collect his work. Several large corporations including Cabela’s, John Deere, and Uline have also collected and used Darrell’s art.”

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I read that bio of Darrell Bush. The woman at the thrift shop knew how important it would be for the plates to have their original boxes and their certificates of authenticity. Without those items, the value drops. No Antiques Roadshow for me….

      Thanks for the link, 11Blade, and for posting an excerpt.

  36. Linda-NC says:

    Hi Sue- too funny about the plates. They are beautiful. Sometimes you just have to have something whether there is a reason or not. For some reason they just spoke to you, sometimes like a good book. Enjoy. Pretty pics as always.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thanks, Linda. You’re right. Those plates were talking to me… “Take me home!”

  37. Heck ck the internet they may worth a jackpot! LOL! Or not but they are really nice!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I did check. 🙂 One of the plates is selling somewhere in the neighborhood of $45 with the certificate, of course, which I don’t have. Without the certificate, these plates sell on the internet in the $5-$10 range.

  38. Glinda says:

    Thanks for telling us what you are reading. I have enjoyed quite a few of your suggestions. I usually get them on my Kindle, but I think I will check out the library, too.
    I loved the plates. I have a collection of cats.
    I do have a red bird plate in my Casita using a drapery hook to hang it. Thought you might like to give it a try. You could hang a couple for a while and change them out when you get tired of them.
    I have used the drapery hooks for many things, they go into that carpet real good.
    I always look forward to your blogs. Thank you so much for taking us along with you. You touch more hearts than you know.
    God bless and safe travels!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Glinda,

      What would we Casita owners do without our drapery hooks? I have two next to the door where I hang the keys to the PTV and to the BLT. My curtain rods are held up with drapery hooks, as well as a calendar on which I keep track of our camps, and even the panic button box for the air horn is held up with drapery hooks! Oh, and I have a catch-all organizer hanging from drapery hooks on the back wall below my computer desk.

      I’m a little leery of putting the plates on the wall. The BLT does a lot of hopping when we go to boondocks. 🙂

      What a wonderful thing to write …”You touch more hearts than you know.” And what an honor that is.

      Take care, Glinda…

  39. Judy Johnson in upstate S.C. says:

    The yellow blooms are so pretty; yellow makes me feel happy as does the color red. You bought real treasures with your plates. They give you joy; a priceless gift! Your library visits make me smile. Always have loved a library. Finding a new author that I love or a new book by a favorite…. the best feeling! I don’t check in often but read faithfully. You are another source of joy and I’m very thankful for you, the Reg and all our blogorino friends.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Judy,

      Thank you for your very cheerful note! I’m thankful for you, too. 🙂

      I don’t know what those yellow blooms are. They remind me of double hibiscus but I don’t think that’s what they are.

      Yeah, discovering a new author one enjoys is like finding treasure! And I love it when I find a good one who’s written several books.

      Have a lovely evening, Judy.

      • Judy Johnson in upstate S.C. says:

        From growing up in Florida, those yellow blooms also reminded me of hibiscus; also allamanda, even though they have a single bloom. Amazing how our minds trigger things from the past.

  40. Thanks for the book suggestion! I’m always looking for a new mystery author.
    Since my cat, Fay Wray, is failing, I’ve been thinking a bit about the possibility of a new pet as well. A dog makes more sense for the traveling lifestyle (FW only tolerates it because she’s old and pretty much content to sleep in the sun all day) – so, I’ve been doing a lot of research. I loved my big dogs, but not only would they be too big for the trailer, but too big for me to carry if we had a problem out on a hike somewhere.
    I’ll have to break my addiction to retired greyhounds (my last dogs) – fortunately, I’ve been meeting some nice little dogs.
    My criteria: youngish, healthy and sturdy(Italian Greyhounds are cute but fragile), female, short-haired, no hysterical barking, not flat-faced (no pugs for me even though they are pretty cute), no dachshunds – probably more criteria if I think about it more.

    Fun to think about a new companion – distracts me from thinking how soon I might lose FW.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Anne,

      Yeah, it’s difficult and sad to see our companions nearing the end of their time with us. I wish her passing, when it’s time, to be smooth for both of you.

      You’re smart to consider how a dog will fit into your life, hiking, traveling, camping… Your criteria are similar to mine. I discovered I wanted a small dog after lifting Spike and Bridget so much during their last year. It is easier being able to pick Reggie up with one arm and put him where I want him to go. 🙂

      Good luck as you go through the process of looking, learning, and considering… A vision of the perfect pup will evolve and then you’ll adopt the dog that’s meant for you when you find each other.

  41. Dawn in MI says:

    The plant with the big yellow flowers might be an alamanda. My mom always had one in her backyard in AL.

  42. Cinandjules (🌵) says:

    Your knack for writing is tooooo funny! Glad your fridge is not only working but efficient with the propane! It will pay for itself in time! Yellow Jubalina (sp) perhaps?

    Thrift stores can be gold mines! I like the duck plate! You can always get those wire hanger plate thingmajiggy and attach them to your carpeted walls!

    We dragged collectibles from CA>NY>AZ. I often ask myself why we continue to do this? Sometimes I think it’s organized hoarding! Some items we keep for memories…other items like Dept56 villages just take up space in the closet….like the entire closet!

    Learned that one can’t store certain items in AZ garages!

    Reg man is all the man you can cope with! Made me laugh!

    Enjoy your evening.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cinandjules,

      You do have to be careful what you put in a storage shed in AZ. Lots of critters around . . . . One time I left a basin outside overnight. It was sitting on my table and had water in it. The next morning I found two dead mice floating in it. Now I have a bin with a locking lid in case I want something to soak overnight. Here’s hoping no critter figures out how to lift the lid.

      I wait on the Reggie Man, hand and foot…no, hand and paw. One man is enough! 🙂

      Have a good night…

  43. Geri, Florida panhandle! says:

    This post and all the comments made for a fun read! I was a collector, not of “junk” but of things that made me happy. Over the years and many moves, things ended up in garage sales or on ebay! Finally I have whittled the things down to what make me happy. These are Chuck, Radar, Tater and our MotherShip! Grin! Making Mermaid tears just adds fun to the mixture!
    Belly rubs to Reggie and sweet dreams to you!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Geri,

      You probably found it hard to part with some of your things, but one adjusts, moves on, and those things don’t seem as important any more. I like your priorities! Sweet dreams to you, Chuck, and your crew…

  44. Gene says:

    I particularly like the two quail plates and would have picked them up also. Here is my plate story. When my partner died, he left it in his will that the 50 some dog plates we had on the walls about the house were to be distributed between his niece and his two nephews. So I took them down and transported them to Chicago. We all got together and I laid them out on the floor. Then I had them rotate turns and pick the plates that they most liked, one at a time, rotating between each other their picks. I was left a series of 6 Labrador puppy plates as I wanted them; and they are still on the wall in my office. I don’t know why I am telling you this other than to say that there are just some things that attract our eye and become cherished.

    • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

      Great story Gene.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I’m glad you told us! I could picture the plates on the floor and the niece and nephews making their decisions in turn. This is the kind of comment that makes coming here fun! Thanks, Gene.

  45. Karen in Pacific NW says:

    The plates…you do have a dear friend with a dog who will soon be moving into new housing. Maybe he will “plate sit” for you. For sure he will be wanting something to put up on the walls that reminds him of being out with nature’s beautiful beast. The do say “home” by reminding of the home where both your heart and his are.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Karen . . . .That dear friend has changed his mind and has given up the voucher for a house.

  46. Virginia620 (AL) says:


  47. Elizabeth says:

    Pretty plates, Sue…well, one thing about thrift shopping…you can keep things awhile and then re-donate them…sometimes I do that!! Ha!! Some of the joy is in the hunt. I also enjoy going to antique shops sometimes…it takes me back to my grandparents and great grandparents and some happy days!! Nice to hear of your dog hunting…

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s true, Elizabeth… recycled treasures! I was glad to read you can sleep peacefully at your new place.

  48. Donna Stanton says:

    Ya know Sue, I’ve purchased things that caught my eye many times, things that I can’t use in the least bit. Then comes a day and it’s just what I needed. I think it’s the subconscious mind knowing what we’ll need in the future.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Donna,

      Yes! I’ve had that happen, too, although I can’t imagine how I’ll need decorative plates. 🙂 Maybe someone needed to see the plates in this post… There’s that.

  49. rhodium says:

    I can see why you were drawn to the plates, they are very nice. I wonder if somehow they connect in your mind with your time in upper NY state. They look like what a lot of Michigan homes had. Also, they remind me of what we saw as decorations when we went “up north” and ate at a small town family restaurant.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, rhodium,

      No doubt that is the connection. Those scenes look very much like northern NY state. I have a lot of memories from childhood playing in my grandfather’s barn. Put a barn in a painting and I’m all over it! Haha!

      Never been to Michigan but I imagine those scenes could be there.

  50. The desert lillies are incredible – I’ve been looking for them near Q without success. Maybe next stop! The yellow hibiscus (I think) are beautiful as well. I love that rich color. At $2.50 each you can enjoy them as long as you want and always re-donate down the road. In the meantime, it’s a simple “splurge” to relish however you want :-))))

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Jodee,

      No desert lilies at Quartzsite, eh? Maybe it has to do with long term human use, vehicle traffic and such. There are more desert lilies on the less used side of Midland Road than over in the main part of the LTVA.

      I agree.. They are incredible. I check them every day when Reg and I go walking the desert. I look forward to seeing one with a long stalk with several blooms from top to bottom. You know I’ll have to photograph that and show it here!

  51. Julie, Molly & gizmo (Idaho) says:

    Hi sue I have returned home with new trailer so am excited to get out & about. First trip will be to big water Utah but then who knows? The world is open with this solar powered rig. Thanks for pic of flowers. Spring has sprung.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Congratulations, Julie! I’m excited and happy for you. Let’s see… Big Water is near Lone Rock and Page, Utah, right? Stunningly beautiful area, a great choice for your first trip!

  52. Cynthia from San Clemente says:

    Too bad you can’t safely use the plates – they are lovely. I think food always tastes better on pretty plates. You reminded me of that silly Lucille Ball/Desi Arnez movie – I think it was called The Long Trailer – she had her really good china and I think a silver tea service and maybe a chandelier in the RV. All stuff that would never work in real life!!

    I don’t know how you walked through the shelter – it is so hard to look at those homeless babies. I wish more people would rescue. We were watching the Westminster Dog Show on TV a few weeks ago and after listening to all the “Best of Breed” and “Best of Show” chatter I thought someone should organize a “Best of Rescue” show. I’ve had pure breeds who came from breeders (a Belgium Shepherd, a Wheaten Terrier and a Golden Retriever) and loved them all, but my two current dogs are both rescues (a pure pitbull I think and a terrier mix). They are awesome dogs and so grateful to have a home. I’ll never get another dog from a breeder!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Cynthia,

      People have mentioned that Lucille Ball movie several times and, you know? I’ve never seen it. I should look for it since my life seems to follow Lucy’s antics in it!

      I agree… Rescue dogs are “awesome!” To me they seem more individual and, like you say, more appreciative, as if their early experiences taught them gratitude.

      I’d love to see a “Best of Rescue Show” although I think all rescue dogs are the best and I suspect you do, too! 🙂

      • Cynthia from San Clemente says:

        Sue, I don’t think The Long Long Trailer (I looked up the correct title since yesterday) was one of Lucy and Desi’s best efforts. But if you are an RVer it is worthwhile watching if only because you can relate to some of the difficulties they get into with their rig. If you (or the blogorinos) haven’t seen these other RV-related movies, you might want to check them out: “Meet the Fockers” (with Robert De Niro), “We’re the Millers” (I thought it was hysterical), and “RV” (with the late great Robin Williams).

  53. rvsueandcrew says:


    Your comments are very interesting and fun! Thank you for adding your presence to my blog. I appreciate your participation very much.

    If you tried to open my blog earlier, you may have found it wasn’t accessible. I couldn’t open it up either! At first I was alarmed. Then I checked with my web host and learned that several sites were down for “emergency maintenance” due to a bug in the software for cloud storage (or something like that). I was very relieved it wasn’t something I had to fix!

    Of course, as soon as I made an announcement on Travels with the Bayfield Bunch’s blog that my blog would be down temporarily, the situation was resolved. Now I know how to fix any tech problems that come up…. just write about it on Al’s blog!

    Well, that made for an “interesting” start to this beautiful day. I hope your day is the best it can be for you!

    Time to walk Reggie. 🙂
    Bye for now,

    • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

      Yep it was down for a nano second last night….the hogster announcement popped up!

      No worries….we’re not going anywhere!

      AO is getting a bath today cuz she isn’t self cleaning like Reg Man! What’s our favorite color to wear? Why it’s golden retriever!

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Boy, nothing jump-starts a day quite like opening up the laptop and finding my blog has disappeared!

        Your last line gave me a chuckle.

        I like your cactus…. You’re getting into this Arizona living!

  54. Sounds you had some fun ‘shopping’.

    My daughter just rescued a Chihuahua/Dachshund mix. They named the fuzzball little Frank. I guess as a nod to the little guy being half weenier dog. Just a big ball of fur right now. So now they have two dogs, a cat, 3 kiddos & mom and dad in a 900 sq ft home.

    Always great fun to visit.

    At some point, you will find a dog (bless you for visiting the shelter) that just *has* to go home with you. When that happens, I look forward to both the photos and the tales of (future) adventure.

    Thanks again for the flower photos – it’s -8F outside and the snow looks to last well into ‘Spring’. If the summers weren’t so glorious, I would have moved long ago. You photos are a break from the white monotony of winter – every visit to your site is a treat.

    Looking forward to the next post and photo treats….


    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Don,

      I do enjoy your comments! “Always great fun to visit” your daughter’s home… for sure! 🙂

      Your positive feedback on the flower pics and canine tales is helpful. Reg and I returned from a desert meander a few minutes ago. We found more types of flowers in bloom and the desert lilies are even more exquisite than ever!

      I’m sure there is much to rave about at your home in Alaska at all times of the year. I don’t know if I’ll ever make it to your state, it being far from my winter camps.

      “every visit to your site is a treat”…. Wow! Those words alone propel me to keep the blog posts coming!

      Thanks, Don.

  55. Rhonda Patrick says:

    Still wondering if the pictures of the Desert Lily you posted are the same as the “AJO Lily”. ???

  56. Rita says:

    I love thrift store shopping when I travel…each geographic area I visit has different things. I buy stuff I really like i.e. a warm, heavy duty sweat top to wear on a cold day, well made souvenir tee shirt from the area I can wear with jeans and shorts, unique socks…I have cows print from Wisconsin, Blue Moon from Colorado, etc. I occasionally buy kitchen or camping stuff. I have four insulated glasses I bought in Idaho about 10 years ago, a wind up battery flashlight I bought for a $1 and works beautifully…I’ve used the flashlight multiple times with no batteries.

    While in Colorado, I had to buy a used bag to fill it with thrift store purchases to check in baggage to fly home. I actually bought some really beautiful hummingbird feeders, measuring spoons with different designs on the handles, a fleece vest (which I washed and wore in the mountains), designer sheets, etc. and hauled it all home. The hummingbird feeders are excellent, don’t leak and look excellent on my palo verde and desert rose trees.

    Perhaps you can look for small storage facility when the time comes to store your fav purchases i.e. the plates for later use when you resettle into a permanent home. I always thought you might buy a small home and/or cabin and still travel from this home base. Each time I travel, I always think ‘I could live here.’ Enjoy your travels.

    • Rita says:

      P.S. when I see or wear my purchases, it reminds me of that trip and what a wonderful time I had.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Golly, Rita… You are Thrift Store Shopper Extraordinaire! You know how to find the best stuff. It’s fun, isn’t it…

      I think the lure of having a home is the fun decorating it, searching for the perfect item for a certain place in a room, and all that. You’re right — If I were to have a home base, it would need to be very small and easy to maintain. I’d love a cabin in the woods or a tiny bungalow near a desert town or a seaside shack. Of course, all of those are beyond my finances and maybe that’s just as well. Home ownership can become a burden. Also, I notice that once full-timers establish a home base they tend not to move around so much. That’s not a bad thing if it’s time to slow down.

      You are quite a traveler, Rita! The details in your comment made it lots of fun and interesting to read. Thank you and enjoy this day!

  57. Lisa, Tommie airborne, Buddy back in SoFlo says:

    Sue, I didn’t see the picture of the girl chiwawa. Did I miss her? Although we prefer land routes, Tommie and I are in the air, enrout to my Mom’s bedside. She is in the hospital, prayers are appreciated. Thanks

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You and your mother have our prayers, Lisa. I’m sorry your mother is in the hospital. Take care …

      No pics of the chihuahua. She was “behind bars”… not a photo I wanted to take.

    • Mick'nTN says:

      Hi Lisa, Tommie & Buddy, Hello to your Mom. I am sending prayers.

  58. AZ Jim says:

    Back to the Wyoming talk.

    I had a wonderful experience in Cheyenne one time while crossing the state. I was towing a 24 foot rig with my Jeep Cherokee. I was on a very long grade when suddenly we began smoking. I pulled to the right and lifted the hood. About then a Wyoming state trooper pulled up.

    Once she (yes SHE) determined our situation she asked if I thought I could make it back a few miles to a campground as a temporary solution. She shut down the interstate so I could turn around and I followed her to the campground. When we got there, it was closed.

    She said, “I know the owner and he lives there but he closes for the season”. She told him of our problem, he opened up and let us have a full hookup site. He told me of a shop in town that could help me with the Jeep.

    Next day I limped back to town and to the shop to see what the damages were. I spent 3 hours there while the mechanics went completely through a series of checks including a road test. When they were ready to release the car back to me, I asked what the problem was and they explained that the transmission got so hot it boiled out of the fill stem and on the exhaust manifold, hence the smoking. They steam cleaned the manifold area and refilled the tranny and told me there was NO CHARGE! I couldn’t believe it.

    We went back to the campground and paid a small fee for our overnight stay, thanked the owner and away we went.

    It left us with a very warm feeling about Wyoming and it’s people.

    Hugs to ya Missy and fellow blogorinos.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      That’s a marvelous story, Jim! Such kindness you encountered in Wyoming. Several people involved… the state trooper, the campground owner, the mechanics, and the business people they worked for… all considerate, reasonable, helpful, and kind.

      I always knew you were a guy capable of stopping traffic… Here’s the proof! And on the interstate! 🙂

      Thanks for an engaging and uplifting story, well remembered and well told. Hugs to you, too, Jim.

    • Diann in MT says:

      Great story, Jim. I am so proud that I am a Montana citizen. When you encounter a public problem such as the one you described, you can be assured that the Big hearts of Big Sky country will miraculously appear at your side.
      The same with Wyoming.
      Can’t wait for you to come this way, Sue. But, I gotta warn you. The Farmers Almanac predicts a lot of snow until the end of March. Take your time coming north. We will be really happy you can make the trip.

  59. weather says:

    Gosh, Sue, I really like the photo you opened with. It has another of those trees that I see stick people dancing in 🙂 . I smiled about your appreciating having a new and efficient refrigerator. I say a prayer of thanks at least once every twenty four hours as I hear the heater kick on just as the cooler air begins to be felt while I’m inside. Using less propane not only is more economical, it makes less trips for you trying to find somewhere to fill a tank. That’s not always convenient or fun.

    You’re right, of course, about full timers that enjoy reading being better off having a Paperwhite . For now I buy used books for 25 cents at a nearby thrift store. Your buying those plates with the beautiful paintings on them at a thrift store, and especially liking the first two, intrigues me. Not one often given to nostalgia for much about the north eastern states, especially it’s winters, you still found yourself drawn to those scenes.

    Now that you’ve experienced at least a few times of being camped where it snowed or was cold while you stayed there, I think you’ve begun to not mind it as much as you once expected to. Perhaps something inside is hinting for you to broaden the scope of places you may one day purchase. A lot of those with brief mild winters you’d have readily dismissed a few years ago might now be worth considering. A fairly remote shack(not quite a bungalow or cabin) in a state with low taxes yet gorgeous woods to take a lunch into sounds like a lovely possibility.

    So does your being at the right time and place to unite with another small doggie to join your sweet family someday. My Kyla kitty is a wonderful friend that I’m ever so grateful to have. She would have been enough to keep me happy with her delightful companionship. Still, our little Polly is an additional blessing that adds constant joy to my life. We had a brief snowstorm so intense seeing anything more than a few feet away was impossible earlier today. I was so excited by how beautiful it was both of them got extra snuggles in the middle of my happy dance mood. At the moment it’s calm outside other than the lake’s waves about 100 feet from my door. I think I’ll go out there and play for a while. Have a great day!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      I picture you, Kyla, and Polly by a window, warm and snug together as the snow blows past the glass. I trust that you, with all your experience living in NY state, have the supplies you need to wait out any storm or being snowed in.

      Regarding your statement that I’m “not given to nostalgia for much about the northeastern states, especially its winters…” I have two collections of memories of winters in NY, as a child and as an adult.

      It’s the child who looks at those plates and remembers the beauty of the snowy landscape, the field birds picking at the frozen grass, the barn warm from the heat of animals and silage, the way wet snow glistens when the temperature drops, and so on. I have vivid memories of pheasants crossing snow-covered fields. I remember the fun of tobogganing, sledding, skating, and playing in the snow. On the other hand, as an adult, with all the demands of keeping a schedule and making a living, the snow and ice and cold lost its appeal… needing to be at work on time and the old car won’t start, sliding on icy roads, being confined for long periods due to the weather, higher bills to pay, etc.

      “Brief mild winters” are within the parameters I’ve set for any purchase of property. It would be important for the location to be situated so there are many travel routes like spokes in a wheel, rather than a place like Ajo, for example, which has one route away. Also important, of course, is availability of supplies and medical care. I’ve seen pieces of property in Utah that are attractive and reasonably priced but too far to go for groceries.

      It’s fun picking up books for a quarter at the thrift store. I used to do that, also at garage sales. Thanks for noting that first photo. I’m pleased you enjoyed it. And thanks for writing.

      Have a cozy evening with your feline crew!

      • weather says:

        Thanks, Sue, we did enjoy a cozy evening, and at the moment are nice and warm despite the zero degree wind chill that’s outside. By tomorrow the temps will be above freezing and by midweek go into the 50’s.

        A part of winter that I enjoy is days like this when I can use bad driving conditions as an opportunity for solitude. Recently I’d mentioned seeing a couple of friend’s while I was out. In your reply you used a phrase like my world of friends. So you know, it’s not unusual for me to only visit with someone once or twice within a month even though we live within short driving distances of each other. I ordinarily get peopled out too easily to see almost everyone more than that comfortably. Of course, if someone needs help with anything, I’m happy to be there for them more often. Somehow because I find that quite emotionally rewarding it doesn’t bother me at all, oddly enough.

        Your having two collections of memories, childhood and adulthood, makes sense and helped me understand the bigger picture. I enjoyed your detailed descriptions a lot, and can relate to both. What changed that made me begin loving winter was moving into the country so even while still working I saw beauty every day instead of just dirty snowbanks and crowded streets.

        About places where it’s too far to go for groceries (at times I consider some of those, too), I realized one solution was to have two full size refrigerators. Most cities have stores that carry affordable used/refurbished appliances and for a fee will deliver them to remote homes great distances away. Unlike clothes dryers they use any standard three prong electrical outlet so needn’t require special wiring and can be kept anywhere inside(a small house, or a shed outside in case an RV is the home on a piece of land) where they’ll fit space wise. Because they now make green bags that keep produce fresh for weeks a once a month trip to a grocery store would work. Having both of the freezers as part of two fridges would give plenty of room for bread, meat, etc. And canned or dry goods are easily stored in whatever way one chooses that’s available.

        Gosh, this is becoming a long reply! Do you expect to remain very long at your present camp? With the unusual rains and temperatures across this country so far this year I imagine planning where to be for springtime may be challenging.

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          Good morning, weather! I’m glad you had a cozy evening.

          Excellent suggestion about having two freezers and/or refrigerators when living far from a store. When I wrote about wanting a grocery not too far away, I was thinking about a piece of ground with no house, since it’s unlikely I’ll be able to afford even a small cabin, at least not right away. Maybe I would be able to acquire in increments, from raw ground, to utilities, to a shed, to a fridge/freezer in the shed, to a carport for the BLT, etc., not necessarily in that order.

          Thanks for the fridge in the shed idea. I hadn’t thought of that. I did think of a washer/drying in a shed with the BLT under a carport structure . . . .

          Or living the life of my dreams, camping in beautiful places, and never having to do anything else!

        • rvsueandcrew says:

          You asked about when we will leave Midland. Not sure. We won’t stay till the end of the permit, April 15.

          Probably we will stay until the desert lilies are opened fully. Can’t miss that. Then we will be free to go.


    • weather says:

      Good morning, Sue. It looks like you and Reggie may be in for a windy day, according to widget. I guess another advantage to having a Paperwhite is not having to hold each page in a book down so it doesn’t flip from being blown while reading outside. Ha! You’re gradually making this die hard book lover a convert.

      Your mention of acquiring utilities indicates that you weren’t considering a developed, pre-plumbed and pre-wired postage stamp sized lot, but a piece of remote acreage, cool for you! Not that what I’ll share is anything necessary for you in the near future, if ever, but lots of your readers are hoping to full-time and affordable options for an exit plan may interest them, so I’ll mention a couple of things.

      Sheds and carports can be difficult and expensive to build. There was no garage at our house when we bought it. Eventually I really wanted something affordable to keep the snow and ice from getting on my soft-top jeep wrangler. We bought a portable garage, Amazon sells similar models. They’re made of lightweight weather resistant material and can be put up by one person in a few hours. Mine held up great here with NY State’s extreme conditions for the seven plus years that I used it. If we’d needed an extra shed to keep things in we’d have used one of those, the front door can be zipped shut to close it in, if one doesn’t want to drive their vehicle in and out of it.

      While looking for places to buy we’d considered getting a few wooded acres and maybe having a small cabin there. I looked at a display cabin, the pine ridge model for $14,975 in the Adirondack style starter cabins line of a company near us, is their website. Significantly larger and more expensive ones would have worked better for us and the troupe we had then though. So that plus land and developing it was more than we could swing and we put the whole idea on a back burner at the time.

      Now that I’m looking at all future options as a solo, I’m glad I’d done that. I’m guessing similar companies build and sell those in a lot of the western states that appeal to many of us. Okay, that’s more than enough about that topic from me. Have a wonderful day in your warm gorgeous desert 🙂

      • rvsueandcrew says:

        Lots of good ideas for me to explore further, weather! I think part of the allure of obtaining property is fixing it with what you need and want. 🙂

        Thank you for helping me think through this topic of establishing a home base. Forgive me for the short response as I bet there are folks waiting for me to post again. 🙂 I’ll come back and reread and reflect upon your comment again, I’m sure.

        I hope your day is unwrapping like a gift full of blessings!

  60. Paula says:

    The plates fit the new life you’ve made for yourself. You love wildlife and appreciate watching wild things like the artist who painted the plates. They bring you joy so they’re a good addition to even a tiny space. Even though they are collectibles, you hand wash your dishes anyway, so why not enjoy them by eating off of them? Thanks again for the time you put into the blog, it is so much fun to read, as well as informative on so many levels.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      You’re welcome, Paula. It’s fun for me to read your response and to know that my efforts are appreciated. 🙂

      Yes, the plates do “fit.” I won’t be eating off them though. A warning is written on the back that the pigments might poison food.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      On the back of the plates it says they should not be used as dinnerware because the dyes in the paint may be toxic.

  61. Denise - Richmond VA says:

    Hi, Sue!

    Enjoy your beautiful plates, even if just unpacking them at camp, to savor looking at them. I was going to say don’t “save” the good china for company – use it! But I saw your comment noting that they were not food safe. They tugged at your heart for some reason…maybe they are for the future, when you decide it is time to settle into a cozy sticks and bricks home. 🙂

    Sounds like you and Reggie have been enjoying yourselves! So much so that you are losing track of time or days – that is a good thing! 🙂

    It is a chilly, but sunny day here. Today I plan to catch up on cleaning and laundry. Tomorrow will be set aside for tackling my taxes, cooking, and making several birthday cards. Gracie pup is doing a great job supervising! 🙂

    Enjoy your weekend, Sue! Sending you and little Reggie love and hugs from me and Gracie pup!! 🙂

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Denise!

      I’m very happy to see you here! Your last comment came in at a time when I was taking a break from replying. You shared about the frustration of looking for a property as part of your downsizing efforts. I worried that you might have been put off by my lack of response. That’s why “love and hugs from me and Gracie pup!” are especially sweet today. I send you the same!

      You asked me in that comment if the desert lilies have a scent. No they don’t. They put all their energy into being exquisitely beautiful. 🙂

      It sounds like you’re able to slow down a bit and enjoy your weekend. You may not be able to lose “track of time or days” but I hope you and Gracie pup are able to lose track of the hours as you enjoy this weekend.

      • Denise - Richmond VA says:

        Hi, Sue!

        No problem! I understand the need to take a break from commenting! 🙂

  62. rvsueandcrew says:

    NOTE TO ROBIN B…. JazzLover replied to your comment under the Exit Plan post.

  63. suzicruzi from Van, WA. says:

    Hi Sue! The plate thing… hmmm? Yeah, you have me stumped too. I have a set of 12 Hummel plates that I want to sell; you want them? They’d be lovely next to your set of wildlife ones! 🙂 I need to get them on Ebay soon. I have a house full of “stuff” to get rid of before I can move on to my next phase of life.

    Did I mention I am headed out to view a LD tomorrow? Also, two others; a ID, and a SD next weekend in my area. These are the folks on the referral program I mentioned to you last week. You were right about sitting in them – so I’m taking your advice Sue, thanks.

    I wanted to ask (and this is such an old topic!), but why did you choose the WAVE3 heater, over other choices? I understand the stock Casita heaters are super noisy, and I can’t deal with noisy either. When I mentioned the WAVE3 Catalytic, (to other RVers) they about bit my head off regarding pets and flammables, and how they weren’t safe in trailers, blah, blah, blah. Well.

    I figured you’ve been using yours for 6 years, IN a trailer WITH dogs, so you “otta know!” Please refresh my memory, and also, if you were ordering a new Casita now, knowing what you know, would you make the same decision again? Thanks Sue! And give Reggie my smooches – right on that adorable beak of his!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, suzicruzi,

      To answer your questions . . . . One lesson that has become apparent to me during the six years of full-timing, blogging, and reading comments on my blog is this… People who squawk about dangers and tear their hair out telling others “oh, no,don’t do that!” usually don’t know what they’re talking about. For an example…. A person reads about a Casita being stolen and from that extrapolates that any Casita left unsupervised is likely to be stolen. NOT!

      What is the experience of these people wailing about the dangers of a catalytic heater? I’m sure there are instances of fumes or fires started from catalytic heaters. That isn’t enough to deter one from their use. Did they operate the heater properly? Was there ventilation? Did they have a working propane detector? A carbon monoxide detector? Was the heater placed near flammables? (I opted to have my heater mounted, rather than purchasing a portable heater. This way there wasn’t any chance I’d set the heater next to something flammable, plus a mounted heater cannot be knocked over.)

      For every hysteric biting your head off about propane heaters, there are hordes of folks who use them for years without problems, folks like me. You gotta’ have heat, right? A furnace was not an option I could accept.

      I love the internet but it does give a megaphone to naysayers and know-it-alls who love to tell others what they shouldn’t do. (Like me telling you not to listen to them! Ha!)

      To wrap this up… You can have a catalytic heater with pets. Use the heater according to instructions and use your head for all related situations (a pet), and you’ll be a happy, warm camper!

      I chose the WAVE 3 heater because Tioga George, whose blog I was reading every day for years, had one and liked it. Others prefer the Mr. Buddy.

      Yes, I would order the BLT again, the same Liberty Deluxe model with the same options… given that I’d be ordering in 2011. I don’t know what is available right now so I can’t say what I’d do in the present.

      You’re going to have fun looking at the different Casita models! When making your decision, think in terms of practicality, rather than the lure of “cuteness.” I was attracted to the flexibility of the Liberty, although many people love the other models.

      Be sure to give us a report after your tour!

      • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

        What year are you ordering?
        And a new BLT because???

      • suzicruzi from Van, WA. says:

        Thanks Sue, I will!! #SOexcited!

        As far as the heaters, thanks for your sincere reply, which is why I asked. No sugar coating to blur the edges, and just factual. I’d already made up my mind to go with the WAVE3, but wanted confirmation that you still like yours, and given doing it again, you’d choose the same route. You’re awesome!

        I’m still reading back in September, 2015; so Bridget is awesome, and Regg-man is awesome too! And of course, the King, Mr. Spike, he was mostest awesome! (Love, love, love the doggie tails (tales of course), and truly, I know this blog is about the dogs, not you. Heh-heh-heh!! You have a lot of awesome competition. Ha! Cheers!

  64. I spent some time in Brazil and a wonderful gentleman explained the difference between Americans and Brazilians. He says Americans have to have EVERYTHING but in Brazil they only have things that are either beautiful or useful. You have the useful now you have the beauty.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Love that! You give us a glimpse into the Brazilian attitude and it certainly holds truth.

      Thank you, Barbara! Great seeing you here….

  65. Lynda H says:

    Book recommendation: Aimee Thurlo’s Sister Agatha mysteries. There are other series by the deceased Thurlo that I’m sure you’d like, but I love motorcycle-riding nun Sister Agatha!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Thank you, Lynda! I remember seeing the name Thurlo on the book jacket of one of Coel’s books…. Three authors were mentioned as being tops in the genre –Coel, Thurlo, and Hillerman.

  66. Hi Sue, dropping in to say hi to you and Reggie..we will be on the road heading back to California in three weeks..I can’t believe how fast time flies..I hope there are some wild flowers left when we pass through Arizona….take care and travel safe! Hello to my friend Weather ❤❤

    • weather says:

      Hi, pal 🙂 !

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Good morning, Shirlene!

      I hope you see some wildflowers, too. If they’re gone in the lower elevations, you might find them higher up. Enjoy the rest of your Florida stay! Thanks for checking in with us. 🙂

  67. DesertGinger says:

    Hi all! Haven’t been here much because I have been working my tail off. One day this week I started at 8 am and worked non-stop till 1am except for a 30 min lunch break. We will be doing this same crazy schedule for a week more. Then back to normal, thank god. But it has been fun; lots of teamwork and camaraderie.

    Yesterday it was 76 here and 22 in Albany. So there you have it..,why I live here. I miss my friends but not the weather.

    Two of my very good friends got married yesterday and they had a big party….so I’m sorry I missed that. Still, it’s lovely here. The best part of the year. If I wasn’t so exhausted from work I would get out into the desert to see the bloom. Maybe next weekend.

    I hope all is well with all of you. Like the plates Sue. When you get done with them, I would sell them. And thanks for the book idea!

    • weather says:

      Hi Ginger, Wow, you’re really close to taking off, May is just around the corner. I’m excited for you! Did you get the tent for the back of your Prius, too? I think your whole set up is great, and can’t wait to hear about your first outing with it. I can’t tell you how happy I am that you recovered so much after all you went through medically. Woo Hoo, you’re doing it!

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Hi, Ginger,

      Wow, that’s an intense schedule. Why the pressure? I don’t understand — You rewrite news? I was curious and searched for FENCE and nothing came up. Tell us more about it. We’ve been discussing ways to make money. It sounds like hard work but apparently pays well because you got your Prius! Yay for you! You’ve been through a lot to get this far which will make the camping all the sweeter. 🙂

      Be careful not to overdo … We want you to stay strong and rest is important. Thanks for taking the time to update us…

    • Cinandjules (🌵) says:

      Are you doing taxes or something else?

      On the iPad, bottom left of keyboard you will see a smiley face. If you didn’t know the “microphone” next to it…is dictation….

  68. Patti from So Cal says:

    Hi, Sue & Reggie,
    I’ve been enjoying catching up on your blogs. All these places you’ve camped are so inspiring! I can’t wait to get my pet and pod to Wyoming and Montana!
    The comment you made, about the camouflaged hunter in the orange vest, still comes to mind and makes me laugh (“….you can’t have it both ways”). It’s so true!

    The plates; They are beautiful! I have several Norman Rockwell plates hanging about my house and I love them. If I came across those nature plates at such a nice price, I’d buy them too.
    I like the idea of finding a nice patch of land for your BLT/PTV and a shed for a washer and dryer :). I mean, heck…people are living in ‘tiny houses’! Mine is close to it…under a 1,000sq ft. It’s a manufactured home I bought new in 1999. I could’ve purchased a bigger one, but I’m more into the size of the yard. Next to me is countryside, full of oak trees. I pretend I own it while someone else pays the property tax.
    Propane: I noticed I was going through propane more rapidly than before. I did smell a hint of it near the tanks but everything was tight and hoses were fine. Turns out it was the dang meter I had attached to the nozzle! I tossed it and everything is fine.
    In term of catalytic heaters, you are correct. There is so much hysteria out there and for no reason. My R-Pod heater keeps me awake due to it turning on & off all night long (I winter camp quite often). So, I bought a Mr. Heater and I love it. Aside from the ‘anything can happen’ aspect, there are no dangers as long as you keep a window cracked. Oh, and have your detectors working. I finally bought a 20lb tank just for the heater because I got tired of throwing away the little 1-pounders. I’ve been unsuccessful with finding a place to recycle them. Now I just have to figure how I am going to run the line inside. Perhaps through a window I keep opened a crack.
    One of your comments regarding your preference and choice of dogs really hit home.
    It reminded me of the eulogy I typed and sent to family members after my Chloe passed away. And, why I believe I ended up with a dog which did not meet certain ‘standards’ of mine.
    And so it came to pass….
    My beautiful, 60lb (not huge but big enough to be intimidating), 1/2 G. Shepherd, 1/2 Chow Chow was almost 15 and I knew it was time to adopt another companion.
    And, I had to do it before Chloe passed.
    So, I viewed many orphans on the net, looking for a female German Shepherd/mix puppy. I also prefer the mixes.
    I came across this little 4mo old blondie, described as G.Shepherd/Golden Retriever mix. Perfect! The ad warned she will be a ‘big’ dog. No doubt! So, down to Torrance I go (50mi), with Chloe. I waited for 1 hour for the rescue-gal to show. I even started my truck, thinking it wasn’t meant to be, and at that point she pulled in. I instantly fell in love with this little girl and so did Chloe (well, so I thought). I could not take her home because she still had to get spayed. Next thing I know the rescue-gal calls me to say her appt. has been postponed and therefore will be another week! I told her I love that dog and will now worry about her surgery. She agreed to let me take her as long as I get her ‘fixed’ asap (I did). Back to Torrance I go.
    Yikes! Now that she is home, Chloe hates her!! What did I do to my old gal? I brought in this rambunctious little female scamp, which is probably causing my ol’ Chloe the Queen lots of stress and will surely shorten her life. I hated myself.
    But, Lilah (whose name I got from the lovely Don Henley song) did not give up on Chloe. After about 2 weeks she found her way into Chloe’s heart and Chloe came to love her back. Chloe lived another 16mos to the ripe old age of 16.
    Now, what happened to my ‘big’ ‘Shepherd/Retriever dog? Lilah grew to be a mere 36lbs….and skinny. She gets more attention from strangers than any other dog I’ve owned! Not just because she’s so pretty, but most of them think she’s part dingo (I can see that), or coyote or some exotic breed. I live with coyotes (one even started after my Lilah) and she looks NOTHING like one. And, 2 vets said part Queensland Heeler. Anyhoo…after a hundred inquiries of her breed, I decided to do a saliva DNA test. I’m not sure how accurate they are, but the results show she’s a mix of Poodle, Boxer, Chow Chow and other breeds undetermined. No shepherd or retriever or heeler.
    That was 6 years ago and to this day I still tell her the story of what I wanted…… and what I ended up getting.
    I tell her God knew what kind of dog I needed more than I did.. God knows I am getting older and maybe a 60/65lb dog would be too heavy for me to scoop up in case of emergency….God knew I needed a smaller dog for my R-Pod trailer. God knew you’d be big enough to ‘pass’…but small enough for me to hold as my little kid.
    (Lilah is just big enough to pass as a ‘bigger’ dog…she’s just narrow).
    She is WAAAAY more than I ever expected in terms of intelligence and charm.
    In my Eulogy for Chloe (I can’t remember the exact words), I started off by saying I’m not sure if we truly love one dog more than another, or if the intensity of our love is based on our life’s situation at the time. For example, it ‘seems’ I love Lilah more than previous dogs, but, I believe that’s because I’ve been retired for 3-1/2 years. I am with her just about all the time! I am home with more often and there are very few place I do not take her. Of course, her personality and uniqueness certainly help, as I’ve never had a dog like her, but like you said…we change as we get older.
    And like you, I like the smooth, self-cleaning coats. Too bad she sheds like no other!
    A friend gave me a little pillow which states;”No outfit is complete without dog hair.”
    Well, that’s my long dog story. Not sure how interesting it was to read but it was sure nice to type it! I have other things to say, but I’ll break it up 🙂

    I hope you’re well and in good spirits.

    • rvsueandcrew says:

      Your comment was very interesting, Patti! I loved reading it! It’s like we were lingering over cups of coffee in your kitchen . . .

      Besides your story of Chloe and Lilah and your thoughts relating to dogs we love, I also enjoyed your comments on previous posts. Thanks for writing! I look forward to more!

      Yes, I’m well, thank you, and in good spirits. I wish the same for you.

  69. rvsueandcrew says:


    A note to let you know I’m almost ready to put up another post. You might want to hold your comments for under the new post where more readers will see what you have to say.


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