Addendum and a change of plans

Sorry about the lack of a post yesterday, it will be explained further down.

I forgot to mention lunch Tuesday.テあ We looked online for a restaurant in Gallup, NM since we were heading through there at lunch time.テあ We had two choices, Earl’s and Genaro’s.テあ Earl’s was a bit like a Route 66 cafe so we opted for Genaro’s.テあ Might as well have one last meal that represented New Mexico.テあ We found out again how California Mexican food differs from New Mexico Mexican food.テあ I feel the difference is in the chile’s used.テあ I have not been a real fan of chile in general but I have liked what I have been tasting here.テあ One reviewer of Genaro’s raved about the Green Chile Cheese Fries so we thought we would try those.

CCFries

I wasn’t so thrilled with them but they were OK.テあ Roxie had a burrito with Green Chile sauce on top.テあ I had a shredded beef taco. They both were good.テあ The salsa with the chips was the hottest we have ever had, I believe.テあ Roxie found out the hard way.テあ I have learned NOT to dip into the salsa before I get my drink if I have never had the salsa before.テあ Roxie didn’t wait, she dug right in and took a big dip.テあ She was VERY glad when her drink came.

The real topper was the sopapilla.テあ We have had variations of them, even two days previously.テあ A puffy pastry that you eat with honey.テあ It did not prepare us for the biggest sopapilla we have ever seen:

Sopapilla

This thing was the size of someone HEAD!テあ It was huge!テあ It was pretty good but it would have been nicer to have a few smaller ones instead of a big one.テあ All in all we did like Genaro’s and would seek it out again.

This brings us to Wednesday.テあ As you may remember we had made it to the KOA at Holbrook.テあ That morning (Wed) we found out that we had to get home and cut our trip short.テあ The reason was not due to health reasons but something that we could not take care of on the road.テあ We decided to get on the road and get to at least Kingman that night.テあ We were sad that we could not continue on but we did accomplish our main goal, the Balloon Fiesta.テあ We can get to Arizona with only one night of travel so we can, and will, hit the locations we want to see.

So we got into some rain and cloudy weather in Flagstaff.テあ On a truck related note, the passenger door switch used to think it was closed all the time.テあ Now it is thinking that the door is open when it is closed and closed when it is open.テあ Another thing is there is a check engine light that came on again.テあ This is the ‘generic’ check engine light.テあ While refueling I remembered there was an auto parts store nearby.テあ I was able to rent a OBDII code diagnosis tool.テあ What it told me was the computer had not relearned some sequence.テあ I think this may have happened during the transmission service.テあ I read on the internet that I was supposed to clear the code and let the truck idle at operating temperature for 5 minutes.テあ I did so and the light is gone.テあ Yea!

We made it to Kingman but it was about 3pm and we thought that was a bit too early to stop.テあ We know that the more we travel this day, the less we travel the next.テあ We pushed on to Needles, but we wanted some more variety so we took Route 66 through Oatman, AZ.テあテあ The first part of the road was standard desert road wide, straight, bumpy.テあ However it did change to a more Route 66′ish road but narrower.テあ Right when it changed we came across these two in the road.

Burro

We had read about their friendly wild burros.テあ I read that as an oxymoron.

This road is very interesting.テあ Even moreso when towing a trailer.テあ Very narrow, curvy, a lot of up then a lot of down.テあ The truck handled it with aplomb and we eventually came to Oatman.テあ We were there just before 5pm and things were closing up so it is somewhere we need to come back and see again.テあ We did see some more of those burros.

Burro2

These were being fed from a store owner in town.

We made it to Needles and stayed at the Desert View RV Park.テあ The price was good and they said their WiFi was very good.テあ Well it was not, we had to sit outside at the end of the trailer by the road to get service.テあ But it was a bit too cold (yes, we remember it being 100 degrees the week before) to be outside so no WiFi.テあ I think they need a few more antennas in the park.テあ I tried my 3G card but it was only Edge and it cut in and out.テあ Hence no blog last night.

On to Thursday.テあ Left Needles and traveled the boring I40 W to CA58 W.テあ Yawn!テあ Down the Tehachapi’s, the hill that started our truck fun.テあ No problems.テあ We made it home about 5pm.

Would we go back to the Balloon Fiesta?テあ Sure, probably not next year though.

Will we get to Northern Arizona?テあ We want to, this was the second attempt.

Do we want to east New Mexico cuisine again?テあ Definitely.

Did we meet many new interesting friends?テあ We always do.

Will we take another trip?テあ Come on!!!

Back on the road

Today the Balloon Fiesta is over for us.テあ I am sure there will be more coming in for this weekend but it is time to hook upテあ and head on out.テあ However, before we left we were treated to another show.テあ We rolled out of bed at an earlyish time but not too bad.テあ We saw balloons floating over our trailer like the previous morning.テあ They were taking off from the field and heading south with the wind.テあ Many went directly over our trailer.

BalloonLastDay

This wave of balloons cleared our parking area and we noticed another wave from the north coming in.テあ They would descend by the field, drop their marker (like the previous morning), then pop back up and continue on.テあ The vast majority of them continued to the south but a few actually set down behind the motorhomes about 3 rows back from us.テあ This was pretty impressive to see that maneuvering.テあ We turned to look at another coming in, lower, lower, lower, boom.テあ He landed right next to one of the Airstream rows and right behind our traveling buddies, Bob and Phyllis.テあ The pilot asked the group around the basket to help hold the balloon in place until his chase crew could get there.テあ Naturally, he got full compliance.テあ In this picture you can see Bob and Phyllis having a great time (they are the ones looking at the camera and beaming from ear to ear and their trailer is in the background).

BalloonLanding1

Roxie was right there also helping out.

BalloonLanding3

The crew got the bag deflated and down to the ground.テあ Again they asked for help to get the air out of the bag and there went everyone again.

BalloonLanding2

Everyone involved really enjoyed it and I enjoyed watching them.テあ There were enough hands already.

We got back on I40 W and backtracked a LOT today.テあ We made it to Holbrook, AZ and are at the KOA tonight.テあ We both had nice long hot showers in their restrooms.テあ We dumped both our tanks and now we are somewhat back to normal.テあ We will head to Cottonwood and the Dead Horse Ranch State Park tomorrow.