Trip to Long Beach, CA

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Posted Jul 20, 12:36 PM

July 18th we set off with Sammy, towing our “vacation home” – a Coleman popup camper heading for the National Square Dance convention in Long Beach.

July 18th we set off with Sammy, towing our “vacation home” – a Coleman popup camper heading for the National Square Dance convention in Long Beach. We have been using the popup for trips away from Pecan Park instead of packing up the 5th wheel and moving it. We travel faster with the popup and the fuel cost is less and we don’t have to pack up our “house”.

Thank goodness the popup air conditioner works great as it was HOT HOT HOT in New Mexico and Arizona. Poor Sammy had problems because he is used to doing his business on grass and some places we stopped only had stones and gravel.

We stayed two nights in a state park in San Clemente, California. It was much nicer and roomier than we expected and reasonable as well. The only real negative was that the bathrooms left a lot to be desired in the cleanliness area. We chose San Clemente to be close to Mission Viejo, home of son and family.

After a lovely visit with them we headed on into the Los Angeles traffic destined for the Long Beach Convention Center. Our 1st surprise when we arrived was being told there was no 30 amp service, only 20. For you non-RVers, what that means is that we could only run one electrical appliance at a time. It was enough for the air conditioner so Sammy was happy.

The next surprise was that the showers would only be open from 7 to 9 am to serve all the people staying in RVs and bathrooms closed when the dance closed.

The first night the dance was a little slow and we were beginning to wonder if we should have stayed home! Fortunately it picked up the next day and we had a fantastic time dancing to great callers and sharing squares with some very good dancers.

We planned our trip back to get through the hot country as quickly as possible and mostly it was better. We even found grass for Sammy nearly everywhere.

The only negative experience happened the night we stayed in Arizona. We stopped early and had just set up when Robert commented that the sky was looking very black. I wasn’t worried as we had no need to be outside and we already knew the popup was waterproof.

We were sitting inside enjoying a beer when suddenly the wind started blowing ferociously. In just a few minutes there was a torrential downpour and the wind blew so strongly we were each holding onto one of the support to help the popup withstand the force. I was also holding the door to keep it from blowing away from its velcro fastening holding it in the door frame. We opened the top edges of some of the canvas in hopes that would help the wind pass through the popup.

In the middle of all this sirens started sounding continuously. If they were meant to be storm warnings they were a little late. There was a concrete building near us but it was questionable at that point whether we should stick it out or run for cover.

Obviously, we survived and so did the popup. I don’t know how long it lasted – it seemed like hours but was probably less than 1/2 hour.

The next day we learned there had been 70 MPH winds. We were very fortunate to be sheltered on two sides so we didn’t get the full brunt of the storm.


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