Thursday, February 25, 2016

Firsts! Shocks, Shower Hepvo kit, Alternative Backup Camera

This is my first post on my new blog!

So this is the year of firsts! I am on my own for the first time in over 41 years. I feel that I now need my own traveling blog to assist me psychologically, to heal, and to move on while I'm rolling those wheels down the road pulling my precious Casita, Tara. By the time the 2016 Fiberglass Rally came around to being front and center in the calendar, I had taken...
3 trips by myself making this roundup my 4th journey. The first 3 excursions, I visited with people I knew--family and friends. But this trip was different in that I had to interact with people of whom I did not know. I had to be daring as I walked away from my safe campsite into new social situations all by myself. 

In doing so, these strangers became friends as conversations shared the awe of sunsets, modifications to trailers, health advice, food, games, and wonderful music by a campfire. Laughter and smiles was the common element. This was so different. I actually interacted more. Last year, Charley and I came together. We were always together. My personality was 'Charley and Kamala' or 'Kamala and Charley.' This year I was just Kamala. I think that probably hastened the timeline I was thinking about for the changing of the blog's name. 

So at the rally, I meet people face to face who I had interacted or seen on the various forums and Facebook Group. One was Imogene, or Imo. I tell her about the idea of a name change and that I would do probably this summer. So we begin thinking of names. Casita Kamala Sunshine Travels came up as a possibility. It seemed to fit also, because there's a familiarity of the old blog's name. Imo said, "Whatever you call it, you have to, HAVE to, add the word continues. And so I did and I am so happy.

Imo asks me, "Do you still have that clunky pull valve for your shower or have you installed the hepvo valve?" 

"I thought the hepvo valves were for the sinks." She explains that there is no need for the pull valve and you can just take the shower without a foot bath (foot baths happen with the pull valve because invariably it would periodically be forgotten) I go find Konrad at the rally to add that to my list. Finding this popular guy is no easy task as he is busy with installing various mods during the rally. I wonder if he got to have any fun? 

My Quartzsite trip takes a little longer than planned because my shocks were installed after the rally. So I decide to stay put at my little Quartzsite as the desert invites me to explore further up Dome Rock with Odin and Cassie. How can you beat free with a gorgeous view? There are a few ralliers who stay after most pack up and leave, so I'm not alone.

Konrad Szelock of Little House Customs - Arizona opened his gate to let me back in as I drive up. Odin and Cassie enjoy the run of the yard while he installs the shocks and the Hepvo Valve. I've since taken a shower! Nice not having to pull that valve.  Thanks, Imo, for your input!

Now about my alternative backup camera. When hooking the trailer up with someone's guidance is fairly easy, but by oneself it's counts as exercise at a gym. I looked into some backup cameras because my Rand McNally RV GPS has an input for a camera. But they're expensive because of the durability and waterproofing necessary to ride back there. So, I'm sitting, watching television one night before I leave on my Quartzsite trip and out of the blue I realize that I HAVE A BACKUP CAMERA!, Last summer, we bought a Fujifilm FinePix XP80 Waterproof Digital Camera for our Alaskan adventure. This camera has the ability to hookup with your smartphone and act as a remote, send pictures to your smartphone, browse the camera, and geotag. So I put the camera on a small tripod and attach it to the back of the truck, connect via wifi, take the phone into the truck and, Viola!, I have eyes in the back of the truck. Hooking up is so easy!!! By the way, the camera is waterproof, freeze proof, dust proof, and shockproof! I told someone at the rally and they bought the camera before they left.

My spirit is charged. The need to change the blog's name became a must. So here it is. Please bookmark my new address: http://www.casitakamala.net/

I am not a full-timer but I travel quite a bit. In the 3 years and 3 months I've owned the Casita I have used it for 356 days (one year) That being said, I think you understand that I don't sit still for very long. I already have more adventures planned for this years so stay tuned.

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