I promised to tell ya'll all about the sweethearts over at Starlite Classic Campground over in Canon City, CO. The Starlite is a fab-u-lous RV park- AND- drummmm rolll.... they have an assortment of restored vintage campers you can book to stay in.  To picture this, think wonderful little cabins-- made out of vintage jewelry. Or just go look already. If you are too lazy to click, check out this 
sa-weet picture of "Joise", a 1958 Alio, that I blatantly copied off of their websiteSigh. So dreamy. I mean, how amazing is that? No elbow, sewing machine or axel grease involved and you get to live the vintage trailer life with the turn of a key. 

Starlight is the great-idea-made-reality of a gal named Sylvia and her beau, Larry. Their darling place, just opened, like, 2 weeks ago. Ok, ok, I know I exaggerate all the time, but really, the real two weeks ago- like April 16th. These people are just wicked cool. When I grow up, I'm going to be these people. I want to keep making hot links to their place so that you will go look. I promise to seek help for this annoying habit right after you go freakin' look. They have half a dozen or so cuties ready to go, and a dozen or so in the works. How lovely will that be when they are all tricked out in their Sunday best? 

In addition to being a trailer enthusiast, and openly cavorting with a known trailer enthusiast, Sylvia is just plain ole NICE.  Hot off of my freakish phone call with the RV resort (unnamed and unlinked; I was raised right, thankyouverymuch) that only welcomes rigs made after 1998, I called up in what can only be described as a panic. Sylvia calmed me right down. Did I tell you how NICE she is? She tutted with me about Trailerism, made purring noises about my trailer, and gave cheerful support for my quest to get it back to Texas safely, while having as much damn fun on the way as possible. 

Go! Go! Go! Go look at the link and make plans to go stay there soon. My spot is secured. But you don't even need yer own trailer- remember? It could not be any easier. 

Or, you can bring your own trailer. But, confidentially, I must say I counseled Sylvia and if you drive some new, showy-type white box, made after, say, 1998, she just might turn you down. I mean, a place has gotta have standards
Travelin' has changed some. When I was little, my daddy would drive all day and 'round an hour before dinner we would start to look for a place to stop that met with my mama's approval. We'd pull in, make inquiries, look around and then maybe stop, maybe drive on. Vacancy/ No Vacancy signs actually signified something. That was part of the road trip deal back then- part timing, part luck. Spontaneity. 

I guess there are still people who spin the wheel and stop where fate lands them. Honey, I ain't planning to be one of them. 

No, siree. These days the magic words are "pull through spots" and I'm told places that have 'em are not likely to be sporting a Vacancy sign in June.  

Thus informed, I started surfing and dialing a month+ before the trip. (Now, as an aside, there are no such thing as "trailer parks" anymore. They have been made fun of into oblivion. They are now "RV parks" or "Campgrounds".) 

Our first stop is actually scheduled to be a test run night right there in Salem, OR. So, I found an RV park that has high ratings and actually bills itself as an "RV Resort". A little perplexing- I mean, I like resorts, and I like campgrounds. But they are not the same animal, no? Resort= crisp sheets+ spa. But, my best friend, Mr. Pull Thru Spot, is advertised to be there, so off I start. Anyway, I'm kinda nervous. I spread out all my info, AAA card, Good Sam Card, AMX, Visa before I dial. I mean, who knows what kinda questions will come up. 50 amp or 30 amp? Sewer? Pi minus the circumference of the tow vehicle?    

The call started ok, but quickly got... weird. How long is the trailer? How refurbished is it? Inside? Outside? And them some speech about how high falutin' they are blah blah, standards, blah, blah, vehicles older than 12 years.  Whaaat? It's a damn good thing I have Southern manners, because- slowly- it seeps in that me and my junky ass trailer are being turned away. Trailerism! Seriously. (The sages over at Tin Can Tourists can tell you more about this 12 year b.s.) 

We are apparently not Klassy- yes, with a big K- enough to stay at their trailer park. Opps! I mean RV Resort. You might say I took umbrage with this. Or I was disappointed. Or shocked. But it would be more accurate to say I was pissed

Like any self-respecting girl who has been shot down by a boy who, quite frankly, was not good enough for her, I ran to the arms of someone cuter, more understanding and wayyy more fun. I dialed up the fabulous owners of the Starlight Classic Campground and booked that part of the trip.

I'll get back to figuring out the Salem stop later. At the moment, I just need to talk to some cool vintage trailer people who know the difference between Old and Vintage and have some respect and taste. So, next up, more about the geniuses over at the Starlight. Sigh. I (heart) Starlite 4ever!!
Well y'all,  we are creeping up on watermelon season here in Texas. Mary jumped the gun and bought a promising looking one off the back of a truck this week. Alas, "todo es muy bueno" did not actually translate to, "yeah, they're ripe, lady". So, here's a lil' sumptin to do with those first few ones that are not quite as sweet as they are pretty.

Slaughter the melon. (I personally, don't hold with "seedless" fruit. Neutered fruit! It just does not make any sense.) Puree large chunks in blender with enough water to make it liquid. Strain to remove pulp and seeds. Repeat til you fill up 3/4 of the pitcher. ('Bout 1/2 a good size watermelon.) 

Add maybe 1/2 cup sweetener, say organic cane sugar, to about a cup of the strained liquid in the blender. Juice up 2-3 limes and add to mixture. Toss in a little mint, or not. Blend til sugar dissolves. Add back to the pitcher and stir well. Fill pitcher with ice/ more water to taste. 

Call up your friends and serve up. And, yeah, add vodka if it's that kinda day. I don't judge. 

Guaranteed to make your watermelon live up to it's "muy bueno" potential. 

Let's jump this plot line ahead. This ole trailer blog needs a change of scenery. So... let's do this thing already. The Beautiful Beast is scheduled to roll outta Salem, Oregon on the morning of June 2.

That's right. No more nail biting. No more damn reasons why this does not make fiscal sense, I can't leave my daughter, etc. Hell, if I'm waiting for the "right time" both the trailer and I will go back to the earth the ugly way. 

I blame/ credit my friend Anjanette. On a trip to the beach she got me all riled up about the trailer trip, peppering me with questions and claiming she would drive the damn thing herself. Now, I know Anj, and seriously: she is triple booked at all times. Nooo wayy that gal was gonna find 10 days to meander across the mountains in a fine land yacht. 

But the fire was lit. So I started called the squad (remember my Chickens with Black Belts?) and demanded, "Well?!". Active recruiting had began. 

About a week later, I woke up in a cold sweat. 2,500+ miles. Through the mountains. With people who TRUST me. When I have no, zilch, nada idea how to pull this off. 

Desperate, hushed phone calls ensued. 

My new recruits were stunningly unimpressed with my attempts to derail this thing. In fact, they all basically told ME to Go to Hell if I thought of changing the plan at this juncture. Git off the phone with them, they said, put on the proverbial Big Girl Panties (that ones for you, Janell) and start mapping the route and booking the campgrounds. Qwit. Yer. Bitchin. 

So, it's On. My darling cousin Tiffany is in for the whole enchilada. Laura will see us off the west coast. Mary will pop over in time for what AAA calls "Indian Country". My girlfriend Roma in Utah has real beds and showers for us when we show up. And Alex R. will fly in to Albuquerque full of enthusiasm and spunk to get us through the Lubbock- Austin- Home piece. 

Wheee.... 10 days, a passel of gals, a vintage trailer, and the open road... this outta be GOOD. 

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Have you been worrying? You know, about my trailer? Sitting in Oregon, getting rained on, and getting no love all these long months? Have you been railing against my irresponsibility? Wondering how a gal could be so blessed with aluminum fortune, and squander it so thoughtlessly? 

Sigh. Ye of tiny, tiny faith. 

Of course I did not forget about my trailer all this time! I am a good mama even when experiencing technical (and a heap of other) difficulties.  

Speaking of faith, let's have a moment of hushed silence for the great retailer we bask in thoughtlessly: Oh, Target, how I love thee. 

Wha? Wha? Wha-t? Stay with me. Stay with me. 

You see, de-vine inspiration struck me last Spring in the form of The Orla Kiely line at Target. I was in Oregon, visiting my parents and checking on the trailer. There, in Target, heavenly music played and a light shone down. (Ok, probably Top 40 and florescent light. Whatever. Hush up and don't ruin my storytellin' ambiance.) 

Target, in their ongoing fashion of bringing style to the huddled, unwashed masses, brought in a line of Orla Kiely housewares in her signature kicky, retro-colors and patterns. It was as if an angel whispered in Orla's ear: "Honey, I know you're Brittish and all, but let's design as if we had a classic American Aluminum Travel Trailer as inspiration, complete with awning, grill and picnic table in mind. It will be sooo Summer-riffic." Not, mind you, rainy, though lovely, English Summer. American Hollywood Summer. Perfect Summer, hold the bees.  
 Orla delivered. She worked her magic with Target and they launched a line with just 'bout everything you need to revamp a vintage trailer. First off, she made huge, picnic-table size tablecloths. Work a little scissor magic, marry those to a sewing machine and ta-da! Good bye, old musty curtains and linens. He-llo, kicky toss pillows. She made coordinating melamine (that's fancy for plastic) cups, bowls and plates. A kitchen mat. Laundry bags. Storage tubs. Dishtowels. Even a freakin' apron. It was almost spooky how perfect it all worked out. So, I made a mad dash to every Target in the 100 mile area, and even put out an all hands call to all my girls in Texas to scour their local Targets until Monica found the 2- tier serving tray. In plastic. It was made for a trailer. You will never convince me otherwise!!! 

So, ensued a frenzy of purchasing, measuring, purchasing, meeting with my mom's dear friend and talented seamstress, Sue, purchasing, and voila. A long-distance trailer rehab is miraculously whipped up. Two more trips to Oregon over the next year, and slowly, all dusty dowdiness is shaken off. 
Yes, I am resurfacing. 

I think 14 months between posts is a refreshing alternative to assuming people want you in their face every other day. I mean, how much of my insouciant charm do you need? 

Ahem. Awkward moment. I'm not really buying it either. 

Ok, I'm sorry. I'm sorry. It's just that, well, life got way too terrifying. My brave-in-the-face-of-advesity face, well, it melted in the face of the extended-dance-remix nightmare my life became. The long dark night of the soul, blah, blah, blah. Basically, I can deal with anything as long as I can laugh about it. And it turns out, things were very, very unfunny for a long while. 

And, truthfully, it's not all peaches and cream now. But, the peculiar thing that happens mid-disaster is that you finally see the wisdom (or inevitability) of surrendering to it. After barely surviving 2008, I zoned out and endured 2009. And when I woke up in 2010 I was just plain ole sick of feeling oppressed. So, I let it all go. I decided my life was mine to drive, life is short, break the whole thing apart and make something new. And once I stopped being afraid, a lot of clarity came. 

What does all that gobilty gook mean? I have no idea. But I do know I stopped desparately trying to super glue my old life back together. I ceased and desisted in trying to find meaning on why things happen. It does not matter. What was, is gone. What is left I can make a life of, or start over. All I know is I stopped struggling and it got better. (Am I dead? No? Really? Ok, ok, just checking.) 

So, that is my vague explanation for my year plus hiatus. Life is complicated, painful, and often sad. And yet I still feel like I am a joyful person, enjoy the sublime pleasure of a perfect slice of watermelon with a squeeze of lime juice on it, and have the greatest friends in the world.

Now, let's get back to trailer-related fun and off of this maudlin track. Sheesh. Finally.