Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Journaling: Frightened Away **

The next day, October 15, was in Jo's words a "boring drive."  With yet two or three hours of daylight, we arrived at McClellan National Grasslands campgrounds about sixty miles east of Amarillo.  The place was deserted but with directions to deposit cash in the strongbox slot and pick a site.  We chose to drive through the area and look it over.  Beautiful lake, lovely woods.  We picked a spot and pitched camp.  Water, electricity okay and the shower house provided an abundance of nice hot water.  We availed ourselves of this.  I built a campfire and Jo fixed supper.  A flock of five wild turkeys wandered past about fifty yards from us, snuffling and picking up whatever it is turkeys are interested in.  How would I know?

As dusk fell eight deer wandered in from the opposite direction, grazing along.  They got even closer than had the turkeys.  A beautiful sight.  As it turned out they stayed nearly as long as we did.

After supper and clean up we read and relaxed for some time.  Oh, did I mention that there was still absolutely no one else in the park, and this is four miles off the highway?  Finally I went to bed about 10:30.  At 11:30:  "Honey, get up now!  I think we need to get out of here."  As I dressed hastily, Jo Ann said that a car had cruised by slowly and when it swung around and drove by the second time she got concerned.  Everything was disconnected, stowed, and we were rolling in less than five minutes.  Oh, the guilt!  We didn't stop and walk the thirty yards up to the deposit box.  Oh, well.  We spent the $11 somewhere else.

I drove while JoAnn slept.  When she awakened and drowsily asked how far is it to Amarillo I responded that we had passed Amarillo an hour ago.  But Texas has roadside pullouts where campers and semi drivers pull over and sleep.  About 2:00 a.m. we pulled into one of them and had the comfort of being surrounded by a couple dozen diesels chugga-chugga while we slept the time away.
We actually slept well and didn't travel again until true daylight.  The clock read 7:15 and it was not until some time later that I realized we had crossed a time zone and it was only 6:15 when we got on the road. --TBC

Roadside rest park


Grace said...

Scary! I think JoAnn was very wise to make you get up and get out.

vanilla said...

Grace, we believe we did the right thing. And you know men. Apt to sleep right through anything.

Lin said...

Oh no! That's scary. It's a rare occasion that you have trouble camping, but when that hair stands up on the back of your neck.....

vanilla said...

Lin, rare. This is the only time in all our years of camping that we were truly concerned for safety. And we've met only one overtly rude person in a campground.