Our first camp is Oak Park, Navarro Mills Lake, southwest of Corsicana, Texas.
I stop the PTV at the entrance gate, show my Senior Pass, pay $18 for two nights, and find that my campsite is #22, right next to Paul and Reine at #23. I drive on and spot them both coming out to the road. I jump out of the PTV and we see each other, face-to-face, for the first time. It is such a boost to be welcomed by experienced campers!
I look around in wonder. Huge oak trees make shady sites with a lawn of grass extending about 100 feet to the water. Each table is under a shelter. I see that most of the sites are empty. Good. I don’t need spectators for the backing-in.
Paul does an excellent job coaching me.
I maneuver the PTV by keeping my hand on the bottom of the steering wheel so the camper moves in the same direction that I move my hand. After about three false starts and some adjustments, the rig is in place!
What a spectacular campground!
Spike and Bridget scramble to get out to see and smell.
After the excitement of picking up the trailer at the Rice factory, going through orientation, and driving to the first camp, I realize I made it to our first camp and exhaustion hits me full force. It’s all I can do to level the trailer (under Reine’s guidance) and chock the wheels. I don’t even have the energy to plug into electric or hook up the water. Paul jumps into action, taking care of the necessary connections, while Reine leads me to their camper for a glass of water and air conditioning.
Once I get my “second wind,” I walk the crew down to the water’s edge.
I do believe Spike is a water spaniel inside a rat terrier’s body!
We walk down a small slope onto the sand and Spike doesn’t even slow down. Straight into the water he goes and plops down for a good soak! Bridget and I wade nearby.
It’s hot, yet not nearly as humid as Georgia. I watch the little waves caressing Spikey’s belly and thank God for bringing us to this place.
Later I sit in Reine and Paul’s Freedom Casita and watch her fix marinated chicken kebabs with green pepper and onion pieces. Paul’s got the propane grill going. Reine checks on the baked potatoes in her microwave.
The crew and I attempt to be useful by taking the trash down the road to the dumpster. When we come back, we go down to the water again. We’re like little kids playing while supper is being prepared. Spike again hurries to lie down and luxuriate in the tepid water. He really is taking to this campground life! Bridget is enjoying herself, too, although she tires more easily. I’m hoping our daily walks will help us both shed some weight. Reine calls us, “Dinner’s ready!”
And it is delicious!
The kebabs are grilled to perfection. We put butter, shredded cheese and potato seasoning on our baked potatoes. The lettuce and tomato salad is crisp despite the heat, and the iced tea is cold and good. Dessert is cake topped with Reine’s peaches she and her mother had “put up.” All the while we’re eating, the crew watches us from the exercise pen, which, by the way, is turning out to be an important part of canine management.
There’s no way I can thank these folks enough.
It would take too much space here to list all the other thoughtful things they have done for me.
We say goodnight and go to our homes-on-wheels.
Bridget and Spike munch happily on their supper and curl up on the bed. (Bridget needs a butt-boost up.) I turn on the tv just to see if we get some channels . . . yes, a good signal. I turn it off to go online and write. I get a kick out of all the comments. It seems like we have a bunch of friends and family along with us! Then I turn out the light and curl up next to the sleeping crew, reviewing the day, until I, too, am fast asleep.
What a wonderful first day of the rest of my life!