Patagonia, Better Than Bologna

January 12, 2022

We moved to a small artsy, nature lovers town next to us called Patagonia at the start of this week and we both instantly fell in love with the town.  The downtown area is walkable and has a few shops, restaurants, and even a laundry with two machines.  There’s a few art shops, a museum, and visitor center too.  Lots of dirt roads that lead into canyons or beautiful views of colorful cliffs.  Our campsite is in fact down one of these dirt roads near a ranch within the Coronado National Forest.  It’s really big and has a nice big tree at the entrance, no other sites near it, and a big wash behind it that I can walk the dogs in.  The only negative reviews I had read about this place were about the traffic and poor reception.  Our phone had decent enough signal.  It was slow, but worked for internet.  There was some traffic coming through to a nearby mine (big trucks), adventurers, and ranchers or other locals.  However, we were set far enough back from the road that it never bothered us.  The people who said it was bothersome were either more sensitive than us or parked in a bad spot.  One thing did go wrong on moving day though…we stopped at a local RV park to dump our tanks and on the way out, we weren’t paying close attention and ripped our big awning right off the side of our camper on the gate.

We felt stupid and frustrated as we knew it would be costly to replace, but honestly it wasn’t that traumatic.  It happened in an area off the main road so we had no traffic to worry about while we figured out what to do next.  The hydraulic arms that support the awning were twisted and bent and hanging half on the side of the rigs so we couldn’t drive it like that.  We grabbed our tools and detached the arms and threw them in the back of the truck.  The awning shade was too big for the truck bed so I tried to get into the RV to throw it on the floor in there and that’s when I discovered we had no electricity.  We pulled into town and found a place to park for a few while we tried to get our electric running again.  Luke was able to google the problem and discover that this happens with accidents and what not and had probably occurred when we cut the wires to control the awning.  He was able to hit a switch and get that puppy running again!  We chalked it up as a rookie mistake that was bound to happen eventually and moved onto our new campsite.  We haven’t really used the awning anyhow as most of the time that we spend outside we are active and not hanging around the camper.  Once we were parked and set up Luke plugged up the holes that the screws for the awning had left in the camper.  We don’t want any of these Africanized bees in this area nesting in our walls!  Below is the new campsite in all of its glory and the swell dirt roads around us.

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We also enjoyed some sightseeing this week.  We took a ride out to Bisbee and Tombstone one day to take some photos, eat some food, and explore.  Bisbee is an old mining town that’s now an artsy community with lots of stairs.  It’s built a hillside, hence the stairs.  We walked down the main streets and admired the street art.  I loved artists alley where the walls were lined top to bottom with canvas paintings.  There was one of a baby that had been defaced in a really funny way and so was my favorite.  Can you tell which one it is from the photo?

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Tombstone was of course hokey, but I liked it.  It’s the town with the famous shoot-out at the OK Corral.  We walked through and checked out a couple of shops.  I stopped at the mine tour and considered it for a moment.  I asked the gentleman selling tickets if the tour was from a mine car you would ride in.  He sadly said no so I decided I had to pass.  Luke told the man I only wanted to go on a mine tour if it was the full Donkey Kong experience.  We missed the last re-enactment of the shoot-out for the day…oh well.  We did get tasty cheeseburgers and fudge though.

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We also went to the Titan Missile Museum and took the tour.  Since we found the last Minuteman missile site we stopped at fascinating, we thought this one was worth a visit as well.  They had a deactivated missile in the ground under glass that you could peer down into.  We had a small group for our tour so the guide offered to show us the areas they don’t always cover like the dorms for the missile crew.  She described that it was likely 18 year old men just out of high school working there in 24 hour shifts hoping that they didn’t have to be the one to turn the key and end the world.  I cannot imagine having that job or responsibility at that age.  Another visitor there recommended Gate’s Pass in Tucson as a good place to see the Saguaros nearby so we hopped over there for sunset before heading back to camp.  It was a great mix of sightseeing, hiking, and relaxing this week.  Of course, we continued to work on making videos for our YouTube page as well.

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