Clover Blossom

9/30/21

New Plan Announced

 

Adventure Location: Rockport,Texas

Adventure Date: 9-30-2021

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The OFM got himself ready and headed out onto the Rockport Beach wooden pier to get in some decent fishing for the first time in over six months. He did have a few less than perfect casts at first but it all quickly came back to him and the fun began.

He was getting small pecks from something for several casts. Then something got serious and the fight was on. Soon it was seen that the fish was a speckled trout that hit the Gold imitation minnow lure. When the trout hit the deck of the pier, it did not quit fighting very quickly. But we did finally get the required picture of the OFM's foot.





It was released back into the water and the fishing continued. There were several needle nose gar messing around the pier pilings and one was silly enough to hit the lure. It was a good fight for about a minute before the gar slung the lure from its mouth.

We fished a little more then headed back to shore to get some chores done. We are leaving the State Park in the morning.



While messing around town later in the day we did stop to get a picture of the semi-famous Rockport Crab. The original crab was destroyed by hurricane Harvey. This new one was installed finally to replace the original one. It is pretty nice in our opinion.



Late in the evening the wind got to blowing strongly and the wave action was blasting over the bulkhead and attached walkway. It would have been a good time to get a bath in fresh saltwater while walking.





Just so they could have some fun too, the clouds got to playing in the wind and making all sorts of funny shapes. Here is a nice picture of some boat masts and red net towing arms trying to grab a cloud or three.





An important to us decision was made this afternoon. We will be moving to an RV campground we have been in before. The plan is to stay here until January since this is the best time of the year on this part of the coast. A few things we have planned involve Texas BBQ, fresh cooked shrimp, lures and fish, surf, beach combing and plenty of great Tex-Mex food with sweet tea. Of course there are a few more ways you will read about here on the things to do on the Gulf of Mexico Texas coast for trying to have tooooo much fun.

9/29/21

Nasty Rain Storms

 

Adventure Location: Rockport,Texas

Adventure Date: 9-29-2021

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Waking up to water dripping on your pillow is not wonderful but at least it was time to get up anyway. Yep the torrential rains for hours had found a slow moving route into the Castle. So we put a container under the very slow drip and had breakfast. The rains since we have been here come in two to three hour horrible waves.

The campsite puddles all around the Castle are 1-2 inch deep water.



We had to wait on the slow leak since we had a time to be at the vehicle inspection place. This was our third try to get Sierra totally legal on the road again. The inspector was waiting for us and met us in the middle of the parking lot to get on with his chore. About ten minutes later he finished and handed the OFM Sierra's keys and paper work. NOW we are free for another year. BUT the leak was still waiting for us.

Back at the Castle we researched the caulking on the roof at the area the leak seemed to be entering and found a couple of very small cracks in the caulk. So we grabbed our tube of roof caulk and found it solid like a rock. Oh rats and off to the store we went.



Back at the Castle we got a big line of caulk correctly applied to this area of interest. Then turned our attention to the 3/8” thick grape vines rubbing on the roof of the Castle. Out came the pruning shears and chopping time began. Now there are no vines rubbing on the Castle, which is good since we have more heavy rain and strong winds forecast for tonight.


Six to Eight Foot vine prunings



We did get out in the later afternoon to tour more of the area in an attempt to decide if we want to come back to Rockport for the cold weather season. No choice has been made yet.

Hopefully the storms tonight will be a little more gentle. Then we can spend tomorrow trying to have tooooo much fun down near the saltwater.

9/28/21

Rockport Tx Beach Picture

 

Adventure Location: Rockport,Texas

Adventure Date: 9-28-2021

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It was a good start on today's rolling effort. To our surprise EVERYTHING went well for the whole 4.5 hours of rolling. No significant stupid drivers or other highway type nonsense happened. It made for some nicely comfortable highway time.

On arriving at Goose Island State Park, we had a very quick check in and were on our way to the site we had chosen.

Then of all the wild things to happen, the OFM nailed the backing into a tight spot ON THE FIRST ATTEMPT. Major accidents like that are awesome.



It is not the best site in the park but it will do for the three nights we are here. However it has a large abundance of hungry mosquitoes in residence.

The Teams mentioned to the OFM it was after lunch time so we headed into Rockport for some good Mexican food. Make no mistake it was excellent. Yep he gorged himself and you know who “he” is.

But then we went touring the area. We are here to try to help decide if we will return in cooler weather instead of this 90+F we have now. The storms damages reported on the internet about this area from the storms were very much exaggerated. Talking with a couple of locals we know verified what it seemed like I was seeing was the real story. No significant damage happened except some minor stree flooding.

Next was a loop by the harbor and beach to see how that was getting by. The OFM cast a lure a few times and had one hit. Then we looped over to the beach for this nice picture of the day.



On into the beach park to the far end showed no other special damage. Even the old wood pier was doing just fine.



By now it was early evening and we headed back to the Castle just ahead of some sort of thunderstorms. This is picture of the leading edge of one of the storms. That is a goofy looking storm cloud.





We plan to get Sierra inspected tomorrow and roam a bit more of the area to gather information to make a decision where to go when we roll next Friday. More places for trying to have tooooo much fun would be a good place to meander toward don't you think.











9/27/21

Helpful Sunshine

 

Adventure Location: Martin Creek Lake State Park, Tatum, Texas

Adventure Date: 9-27-2021

Click the picture to enlarge it.

Teams Location: Sonny's RV Park, Lexington, Tx.



It was a busy morning for the Photography Team. We hit the park trails right after an early breakfast and the shooting was great. The OFM made it a shorter walk because of all the time we spent shooting pictures. We do a lot of bracketing when we take pictures so there is frequently 5-9 frames to get the one published. IF you bracket a lot the extra pixels cause the camera to get a lot heavier.

As we crossed the first parking lot this foliage on a tree caught our attention with its new coloring due to Fall being here soon.





It was really bright up close.

The meandering continued over to the lake shore area where the sun rising and the morning shadows from the trees and shrubs really made it a new picture every 60 seconds since the lighting was changing so quickly.



This next picture was taken facing a tree line with the sun behind it. The water was steaming fog up and the sunlight coming over the tree tops was causing interesting colors on the lily pads and mosses in the cove. This scene only lasted about thirty seconds so we did some fast shooting to get it. It was fantastic fun.





And a walk out on the pier yielded ANOTHER unreal picture. As we walked near the handrail on the side of the pier away from the sunlight, we were looking for more special lighting effects from the sunlight interacting with all the water and greenery.

We got a huge surprise when one view slowly appeared and stayed long enough to get a couple of shots. The lily pad was catching some lighting from reflected sun we assume. But the water was still dark and that is the moon still reflecting from the water. We only got two camera clicks before the entire image disappeared. WOW we were fortunate to be at the right spot at the perfect moment.





And all this action so far was just the beginning of a great day of visiting neat folks and good traveling for 210 miles to Lexington, Tx.



After arriving and setting up, the OFM has been plotting a myriad of different locations around us to roll toward tomorrow. So check in and see where we end up rolling for trying to have tooooo much fun AGAIN.




9/26/21

An Old Trail

 

Adventure Location: Martin Creek Lake State Park, Tatum, Texas

Adventure Date: 9-26-2021

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It was a busy day with a trip into Henderson Tx to allow the teams to check for internet service there. Everything checked out perfect so the trouble is in the State Park system/area.



The neat walk on a park trail through the forest and on the old Henderson Road was nice and will be reported soon. Then we had a wonderful visit with some really nice folks a couple of sites down from the Teams. And BAM it is time to get ready to roll in the morning. Yep we still do not know where we will meander to get on with the trying to have tooooo much fun.





















9/25/21

Spiders

 

Adventure Location: Martin Creek Lake State Park, Tatum, Texas

Adventure Date: 9-25-2021

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Morning Notes:

We woke up to a nice cool morning among the

hordes of campers that rolled in last evening. Of course we have to remind the OFM that in his early life he was one of those style of folks too.

On the walk this morning it was definitely different than yesterday since today we got to listen to dozens of different radios and stereos playing all different types of “music”.



Evening Notes:

On the morning walk (there were three walks today) a very nice picture of the power plant on the opposite side of the lake. Thanks to that power plant we have the lake for recreation in this area of Texas.



 Look up Tatum, Tx on google to find us. Today half of Dallas showed up for recreation it seemed. BUT to our surprise everyone seemed to be on excellent behavior which made for lots of unplanned little visits with folks by the OFM. It was fun.

This state park is blessed with the original drainage system being done with native rock for the ditch linings and head walls. They are pretty neat to just meander along and see all the hard labor results. Here is a good example where a ditch crosses under a vehicle approach to a parking lot.





We bet that these rock linings would be WAY to expensive to do now days, but they are sure nice to meander along and check out in detail.



And another surprise awaited us just a few feet on along from the culvert above. This circular spider web was hanging between two trees at least 12 feet apart. The circular part of the web was at least three feet across. With the sun hitting it just right, the OFM just had to wade out into the brush for a picture of it for all our worthy readers.





For a little personal fun and practice the OFM took the fishing rod with a lure down to the lake and practiced casting for a nice while. Those first few casts were certainly not what was planned at the start of the cast. But he got the rhythm and style back and from then on it was fun. So now we are ready to handle the rod well when we are ready to go fishing again.

And just to help the day be fun, we finally finished another painting. So you can tell it has been a busy day of trying to have tooooo much fun.





















9/24/21

Second Class Supper

 

Adventure Location: Martin Creek Lake State Park, Tatum, Texas

Adventure Date: 9-24-2021

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The Teams need to make up their minds about where we will roll Sunday morning.



Our second day was a disorganized sort of day but the OFM did get in something over two miles of up and down hill walking briskly during the morning. We also hit up Walmart and Whataburger during a noon run into town 15 miles away.

During the afternoon the OFM did some fishing/casting and got some badly needed casting practice in an area he could not cause trouble. We did get a nice picture of a lake reflection to enjoy.





The OFM got a wild hair a couple of days ago and purchased a can of Great Value Spaghetti and Meatballs.



Tonight was try it for supper night. It was adequate with lots of BBQ sauce mixed in.





Then there was a large improvement of the view from the table from the last few at our along I-20 stops. Here is our late evening picture with the setting sun burning a hole in the tree line surrounding our campsite.



By the way the cost for the site with water and electric was $37.50 total for three nights. We hope to have another nice day tomorrow while we are trying to have tooooo much fun.





















9/23/21

In Texas

 

Adventure Location: Martin Creek Lake State Park, Tatum, Texas

Adventure Date: 9-23-2021

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We rolled decently early this morning from our free camping spot near Morton, Ms. The weather was a bit windy and the roads frequently undulating which combined to make towing erratic for smooth control. But we got here in good shape in early afternoon. In case anybody needs to know, I-20 through Shreveport La. are in pitiful rough shape.

Lunch was in Waskom Tx at the Texas Travel Stop. We have spent the night there a few times in the past with good results. Here is the lunch view we had today.



Internet is only available at the park's office.

Somewhere we took this next picture. It is I-20 somewhere in La, Ms, Al or East Tex and we do not recall which place since the whole run from Point Mallard looked like this photo.





We got set up in the state park for the next few days and this is what the front yard looks like. 




We plan to be here a few days until we can make our mind up about where to go next in our search for trying to have tooooo much fun.

















9/22/21

We Actually Rolled!

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-22-2021

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It really happened. We got rolled at a reasonable time this morning. After the goodbyes at the campground, we rolled out in a light rain. By the time we got fifteen miles south on I-65 we were out of the rain and into dry for a few miles and then bright sunshine for the rest of the day.

The side winds made it an interesting time now and then but no actually bad trouble occurred.

Here was our beautiful boondocking scenery as we ate lunch.



Then we rolled on down I-20 to near Jackson Mississippi and another beautiful boondocking location for supper.



Tonight should be a good resting night. This rest area actually has full time security guards to keep things under control. The OFM met the guard for this evening and made sure we are in a proper spot for the night.

Tomorrow is roll on into Texas and Martin Creek Lake State Park for three nights. It definitely feels good having Comfort Castle tagging along behind Sierra as we head out searching for having tooooo much fun.

9/21/21

Is It Really Happening?

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-21-2021

Rolling Date: TOMORROW

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It seems to be really happening. After several attempts to end the Alabama stay only to see the extension of the teams stay for a bit longer, we seem to be going to roll early in the morning. The OFM even took pictures of the evidence we are rolling tomorrow. Of course we have a few hours left for another delay to crop up, but we are very optimistic we will get to roll this time.









Hookup in the morning should be a twenty minute affair and then the Teams will be on the way to I-20 in Birmingham Alabama. It has actually been a very nice 6+ months stay but the tires are itchy and need rolling. The pent up energy needs to be moderated somewhat. The first night out will be a boondock at an I-20 rest area near Jackson Mississippi. It will be a nice cool night there since a cool front is due through there that morning.



The timing of the rolling is not our first choice since we will hit Texas going into a weekend with the normal extra crowding in campgrounds. Therefore we decided on three days of paid camping at Martin Creek Lake State Park for $37.50 with electric and a very nice clean dump station. That gets us through the Friday night and Saturday night with a gentle break in to travel again. Plus Sierra needs a new Texas inspection which is very convenient to the State Park.

While at the park we will enjoy some pleasant time with walking tree lined trails and, after we get a new Texas fishing license, some nice fishing in the lake. That sure sounds like a good way to work ourselves back into traveling mode again. OOPS we almost forgot that there is a Whataburger fairly close to the campground.

Whoopee!

What a way to start a new phase of trying to have tooooo much fun.







9/20/21

Flooded Campsites

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-20-2021

Rolling Date: after 9-22-21.





There was enough more rain to flood out portions of the campground. Those folks were given refunds for the unused part of their stay. We did not have a flooding trouble at our site.

Since tomorrow is final preparation day we made a long grocery list for our next travels. Tomorrow morning will be the grocery run and our normal preparation effort.

We did have a bit of surprise this afternoon. The OFM needed a break from the new painting effort. He decided to run through ALL the cabinets and drawers again looking for things that are no longer needed. To our surprise we got three Walmart plastic grocery bags of things and stuff to send to the dumpsters.

Since he has decided to specialize on colored pencil art, all the other art supplies were disposed of by gifting it away. As part of that process we were able to rearrange the cabinets contents and now have more room to NOT get more stuff. To our surprise we found an item that was lost a few years ago. How it got where it was is beyond our comprehension but now it is stored in a logical location.

Only two very short walks happened today. The rains kept on trying to catch us too far from the Castle to get back quick enough to stay dry, but we won that contest today.

We celebrated the moving day getting here with some Mexican food at a decent restaurant for lunch. Good Grief it was good and the OFM celebrated it with a bit of a nap afterward.



So overall it has been a good day of trying to have tooooo much fun.







9/19/21

A Weed

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-19-2021

Rolling Date: after 9-21-21.

Click the picture to enlarge it.



The OFM awoke to the wonderful sound of heavy rain beating the roofing off the Castle. We had steady rain, sometimes very hard and sometimes lighter rain, all day. Area flooding was happening all over town it seems. We went to the grocery this morning in the heavy rains and then went to lunch in moderate rains. But it was always raining in some amount and more predicted for tomorrow.

We did get some sort of sunset this evening through broken clouds. Mother Nature is supposed to replace the broken clouds tonight with fresh heavy duty clouds to with stand all the rain coming to clean the air in the area. Here is the best shot the OFM could get of the sunset through the trees.



For a little fun the OFM played with his new toys called Goldfaber Colored Pencils. His fantastic creation was inspired by a small weed we saw in the yard yesterday.





And that is the whole day of trying to have tooooo much fun.

9/18/21

Interesting Day

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-18-2021

Rolling Date: after 9-21-21.

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We awoke to a horrendous rain storm this morning. By the time breakfast was finished and some computer time was used the rain stopped. The local radar showed we had a few hours until the rain starts again so it was shoes on and out the door time.

As we headed out to the chosen trail for today, where we hoped it would not be too muddy, we passed through the center of the campground. Good grief these rigs are cramped up on top of each other was the OFM's thoughts.





The walk had several things new this morning and here is one of them. For some reason there were lots of spider webs in the three to six feet diameter hanging from the limbs along our route. We tried to get pictures of some of them but this one was the best we could do.



It was about four feet across.



In one part of the loop road we passed near a golf hole that has been a misery for the OFM in the past. When he slips a ball to the right of the fairway in years past, this was typical of his “easy” second shot to the flag. But the reality was that he was about three strokes from the green at this point.



At least it was a pretty scene to enjoy as you messed up the hole score mightily.



Some time in late afternoon 1600 or so the storms started in with lots of enthusiasm again. There was flash flood warnings added to the fun.


Raining For Hours

Sure enough we are having serious rain until late tonight. We are hoping it works out OK. This campground is one that sometimes has waterfront campsites. The trouble is that the water fronts on the TOP of the campsite. We are fortunate to have one of the few higher elevation sites that only floods about every eight years or so.

A flooding campground does not lead to trying to have tooooo much fun.

9/17/21

New Colored Pencils

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-17-2021

Rolling Date: after 9-19-21.

Click the picture to enlarge it.



The OFM had a rough day today. He was dragging everywhere he went and in everything he did. But no fever or other symptoms of anything.



During the short gentle walk we did, he took this picture of the water ripples as seen from a tunnel through the shrubbery.





That was about the only special thing about the abbreviated walk.



After lunch the last purchase by internet arrived and that was the last thing holding us back. It is new Goldfaber colored pencils for art efforts. Here is the box of the pencils.





And now a nice view of the colors inside.





These should be a great help in trying to have tooooo much fun in our soon travels.

9/16/21

Frogs and Worms

 

Adventure Location: Decatur, Al.

Adventure Date: 9-16-2021

Rolling Date: after 9-19-21.

Click the picture to enlarge it.



It was late getting out his morning since the OFM slept 10.5 hours last night/this morning. We managed to get in an entire loop road walk with out much pain.

One thing that was conspicuous was the large quantity of bag worm nests in lots of the trees.



Those critters are no good for nothing in our reference books. But there is a lot of them this year.



Right after we started the walk we came upon some maintenance work being done near the path.





An old rotten tree was being taken down before it fell on somebody on the trail. They did a great job of getting it down and grinding away the stump. If we are lucky they will keep on working along the path until the rest of the rotten and ready to fall trees are removed. As far as we are concerned they could just as well leave the stump and let it naturally rot back into the soil.

Due to his feet swelling and shrinking during a walk, we expect him to retie his shoes at least once. Sure enough as we turned toward the back part of the loop trail he meandered over to the plastic fence around the golf course and put his foot up on a rail next to a “post'”. The top of the rectangular post was missing and as his head got near the opening in the top of the post a burst of activity made him jump back. Two froggies were sitting inside the post just watching the event of the moment. They posed for three pictures including this one taken with flash activated.



Several leaves were changing colors and we grabbed pictures of them for using as models in a painting. Maybe they will show up in a colored pencil painting within a year or so.



The OFM keeps having folks ask where we are heading when we leave. We tell them we will be heading West on I-20 from Birmingham Alabama. The part they have trouble with is the Teams do not have a fixed plan. That cannot be right, you HAVE to know where you will stay each night. After the second day when we enter Texas the plan is to meander until sometime next May when we plan to meander back to grandkid land. EVERY person we talk to from here cannot understand that we do not HAVE to have a fixed itinerary. BUT not having a fixed plan is the best way of trying to have tooooo much fun.