Borrego Sun - Since 1949

Vagabond Tour is About to Begin

A Travelogue Introduction


Last updated 4/21/2022 at 9:25am

Well folks, looks like my time here’s about up. After 10 years in Borrego Springs, with more than seven years reporting for the Borrego Sun, I’ve decided to pack my car with the bare essentials for living on the road and take off for parts as yet unknown. I call it my Vagabond Tour, starting in early May.

My effort to fund my top “bucket list” item, a K-12 play/musical for school kids across the country, “Panthers,” unfortunately went south in January, and the whole process, including prep and rehearsals in Los Angeles, exhausted nearly all of my savings. So, not having to pay rent, utilities, and cable-internet bills will go a long way towards recouping losses. Just the thought of not having $400 electric bills during May, June, July and August makes my heart sing.

Hopefully, the release of Strategic Petroleum Reserves will result in gas prices declining over the summer so I can do more than merely stay barely ahead on expenses while on the road.

Having my new 5G iPhone with its own hotspot, plus a laptop, I’ll still be in touch with the world and can tend to email, catch the news, listen to iTunes selections, and even watch a streaming movie on occasion. Hopefully I can get more creative writing done, too, like short stage plays, probably influenced by interesting places, people, or events on the road. And I plan on reading a lot, too. I used to be a big fan of fiction, but there are so many good non-fiction books to read – science, politics, history – I’ll concentrate on them.

Also, I’ll be sending in regular reports with a road pic for publication in the Sun, and my email is still for anyone wishing to provide comments.

I think my first article will be about how I tried to get a simple, one-year fishing license online. Hey, I just want to catch a rainbow trout once in a blue moon and cook it up for breakfast, maybe with some scrambled eggs, OK?! So, with State agencies like Fish and Wildlife now having web presence, simple, right? No-o-o-o! The frustration of navigating through a website that renders one all but exempt from easy use makes me want to retaliate – like strangling the first trout I catch while cursing the folks who built that website! And I’ll check online on a regular basis to keep up with people and events here.

I’ve never done this kind of thing before, so I expect there will be much trial-and-error involved, like what to have with me in the car: Appropriate clothing, including a short-sleeve, short leggings wet suit and fins for the ocean, streams, rivers, and lakes. Enough underwear to last a week before trekking to a laundromat. My eBike is mounted on a rack at the back of the SUV so I can go exploring, and a first-aid kit in case exploring also involves some form of crashing.

The rear seats fold down flat, so I’ve got a sleeping space that’s not cramped. If worse comes to worse, I’ll spring for a tent. A double sleeping bag and foam pad for comfort (and in case I get lucky), but it was vacuum-sealed with six different straps on the cover bag and I’ll never, ever, be able to get it back into the tiny bag into which it was stuffed, then all the air sucked out. Maybe spring for a cheap motel once a week. A well-insulated cooler. A big roll of duct tape, a 10x12 tarp, 100-feet of thin nylon rope. Coleman camping stove with dishes/utensils. Oh, and can’t forget my golf clubs when the occasion arises. A portable jump-start battery (in case I leave the headlights on when I’m out in the middle of nowhere), with compressed air function to blow up car and bike tires, plus USB connections for charging up stuff like my laptop, LED lantern, iPhone, whatever. I’ll also be studying maps and trying hard to avoid doubling-back to catch somewhere interesting I might have missed.

And speaking of what I might miss, I’ll definitely miss the people I’ve met in Borrego while reporting for the Borrego Sun or playing golf. Every topic – golf, water, weather, live theatre, local events – presents its own writing challenge, and I find the people in and around Borrego Springs unique in their dedication to making Borrego, and the world around them, a better place. I am forever grateful to have had the opportunity to inform and even at times amuse you, dear reader.

So, farewell in May, and who knows what my future brings, but stay tuned for my Vagabond trials and tribulations as the next phase of my life journey commences.