Life on the Open Road (April 2006 - May 2008)

The continuing saga of a single fulltime RVer who travels the western US. This is part one of my journey, from April 2006, when the blog started, to May 2008, when the blog continues at

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I have been a full-time RVer for 18 years, primarily "boondocking," camping free without hookups, in the Western US. I am connected electronically with the world via satellite TV, phone and internet. My batteries are charged solely by solar panels. I welcome your comments and emails.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Lost in the Fifties

One night we had a "Lost in the Fifties" dance in our rally hall.

I don't know how these women carry around outfits for all these different themes, but they always manage to come up with something.

A lot of the guys wore t-shirts with the sleeves rolled up to hold a pack of cigarettes.

And we rolled up our jeans above our sneakers and bobby socks.

Here's a photo of the line-up of some of the poodle skirts that Donna took. Don't know how I missed this. Oh yeah.... I was DANCING!

Some of the women even carry around saddle shoes!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Back to the 11th Street Cowboy Bar

Wow! Is this too much smile? This cowboy is Ronnie Furr, who sang 5 nights at our park for the rally, then on Sunday afternoon sang at the 11th Street Cowboy Bar in town.

Once again, our group overran the place.

To hear Ronnie, and to see if my dancing has improved, click on the arrow.

He really puts on a great show, with just the right mix of 2-step, swing, waltz and cha-cha.

He often jumps off the stage and mixes with the crowd. Here he's singing and dancing "Elvira."

But he always saves the last dance for his wife, Terri.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Wild West Dance Hall Night

One evening in the park we were supposed to dress up in Wild West clothing for our evening dance.

The costumes were amazing.

Oneta seems to have made a full recovery.

I decided that the Wild West needed some law and order.

Andy had the same idea, but he probably didn't get his gun in the Walmart toy department....

Bob, Bobbie, and Andy put on a skit to Robert Service's poem, "The Shooting of Dan McGraw."

To view a short portion of the skit, click on the arrow.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

The Dance Rally Starts

I was pretty excited - dancing and cowboys! What could be better? The rally actually started April 13th, but I've been so busy dancing that I am way behind with the blog.

It all started out with a weenie roast down by the Medina River, called "Down on the Farm with Andy." Here's Andy working hard to keep us fed.

Some of the 170 rally attendees.

I'm in the middle of the picture. After dinner we were entertained by a cowboy poet.

We had breakfast every morning. There were 5 teams of participants who made breakfast and performed various other tasks necessary to keep the rally running smoothly. I served pancakes one morning.

Every afternoon we all got together to "meet and greet." The team in charge that day provided snack foods and entertainment.

There were dance lessons almost every day.

And dances every night, either here in the park or in town. More on the various dances in future posts!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Remember the Alamo

While we were waiting for the dance rally to start last week, Donna, Tom, Max, Bertie, and I went to San Antonio to see some sights. The Alamo was originally a mission for 70 years in the 1700s, but is most famous for The Battle of the Alamo, which occured March 6, 1836. To read the whole story, click here.

They won't let you take pictures inside the Alamo, (I guess they want to sell postcards), but I managed to sneak a few.

The Riverwalk is near the Alamo, so we walked around there for a while.

This family of ducks with 9 babies did a good job of dodging the boats.

We got a great seat at lunch where we could watch the boats go by and almost collide at this intersection.

Tom found a book he thought I needed.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

A Night Out on the Town

I'm in Bandera, TX for the Annual All-Singles Dance Rally. There are 170 single RVers here with me. Wednesday night a lot of us went to the 11th Street Cowboy Bar for their weekly grill-your-own/dance.

This bar is the biggest dance place in town and is known for all the bras hanging around. Apparently, if you leave your bra, they give you a t-shirt.

Four big grills were set up, and the bar sold sides and setups.

Oneta fell on the dance floor a few nights ago and is unable to dance or cut meat for a week, but Bob was ever helpful.

A cowboy came by and asked me if I wanted some "banes," and I was clueless what he meant. Finally I asked him to spell it and he said "Frijoles." Ooooohhh! Beans! I guess he knew I was a tourist. But I'm eating beef, which I haven't had in years, so maybe I AM becoming a Texan!

The sawdust went down and the Lone Star Pickerz band tuned up.

They have a huge dance floor. Donna, how many of these people do you recognize?

One of the band's party took a great picture of Phil and me.

Some of the women in our group got up on stage and provided backup and dancing. The band named them "The Irritations."

Watch the video and you'll be amazed. Remember all of them are in their 60s! I had such a good time, I can't wait to go back next week!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Cowboy Capital of the World

Wow! Why didn't I know about this town before?

They even have a store! I wonder how much the cowboys are?? Let's go see....

Well, no cowboys for sale, but I did find an appropriate shirt, just in case.

Wait! What's that? Two cowboys, one on a longhorn steer!

I chased him down, and he offered to let me sit on the steer, but I was too chicken.

Later at our afternoon get-together, I got to meet another cowboy from town. I talked to John for quite a while, while my friends were giggling and taking pictures. We talked about how different our lives are. He doesn't even own a car, so his world is very small, limited by how far he can ride his horse.

He offered to let me ride his horse, but I was afraid I'd make a fool of myself. I probably couldn't even get on it!

Well, I didn't kiss the cowboy, but I did kiss the horse!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Hondo, TX

The Escapee park in Hondo was a perfect place to stop for a few days on the way to the Bandera All-Singles Dance Rally. Everyone was laughing at me for getting hookups, but it was HOT!

Lots of other WINs had the same idea to stop here, so we got together for a pot luck/burn-your-own dinner.

While in Hondo, I bought a new little camera, a Canon Power Shot SD1000. It's only 3 3/8" by 2 1/8", so it fits easily in a little pocket of my purse. I'm still going to use my big camera when I want to take picturesque stuff.

My first picture!

We all went shopping for cowboy duds in preparation for the Dance Rally. See how handy this new camera is?

Bertie needed to test out the danceability of her new boots.