After our workout, we made a stop at the local book store...Reader's Oasis Bookstore is quite famous for its naked owner..."Bookstore owner Paul Winer has spent a couple of decades wearing nothing but a strategically positioned sock. Signs outside invite visitors in for photo ops." Of course, after wandering around in this well stocked store, "we" asked Paul to have a picture taken with the four of us. I don't have that picture, but here is one from Jim and Barb's blog (thanks, Jim!). I just had to share the "view" with you all...LOL! (sorry....)
With that little adventure out of the way, we headed home. Steve was just fixing himself some lunch, having just recently gotten home. He and Red had gone into town earlier to the Post Office and Museum but had some time to kill so they made a stop at the RC Airfield first...
After getting Red's parcel they visited Tyson's Well Stage Station Museum. Entry is free but donations are welcomed.
The museum was opened in February 1980 by the Quartzsite Historical Society, after extensive restoration work. The original structurally sound walls were retained and others were rebuilt. A shell of stabilized adobe brick was built around the original walls to protect them. Money for the restoration was raised by the recycling aluminum cans, yard sales, bazaars, slide shows, membership dues, book sales and donations. Fund raisers continue during the months that the museum is open.
"The original adobe stage station was built in 1866 by Charley Tyson at its present location. It was an important way-station on the California-Arizona line because of excellent water and grass for the horses. Miners and freighters, hauling mining equipment and military supplies from the riverport at Ehrenberg, also stopped here. The post office was at Tyson's Well Station from 1893 until 1895. The stage station became the town center with a grocery store, lodging, food and nearby saloons. Early in the 1900's the railroad reached Yuma and the Laguna Dam was built, causing a downswing in the economy of Quartzsite. The mail then went to Ehrenberg. Tyson's Station became the Oasis Hotel. In 1896 the post office was re-established at Ingersoll's Mill. Regulations prohibited re-using the same name so it was changed to Quartzsite (Site of Quartz). In 1922, E. Joe Johnson, owner of the Oasis Hotel, filed and recorded the first townsite. The town saw many changes in the next years and the Oasis Hotel became neglected. In 1972 Mr. and Mrs. C.A. Rice donated the lot with the stage station for a museum."
Mining for gold, lead and mercury have played an important part in the history of Quartzsite and to a lesser degree, are still going on. The museum has a fine display of mining equipment.
Barrett's Miniature Village was created by Walter Barrett, a long time winter resident of Quartzsite. He spent 8 years building the stone houses, replicas of building from his past. After his death, the village was donated to the Historical Society by his son and daughter.
We spent the rest of the afternoon trying to escape the wind...it was a very warm, windy day! I made a phone call to Fort Camping, the regional campground in Fort Langley that we have called our "home away from home" for the past five or so years. We are booked in there this April for a month but we are looking at our long term plans for this fall when we go to Africa. So we decided we'd like to book in there for three months starting at the end of September. Since we won't be back from our trip until mid-late November, we thought we'd stay and celebrate Christmas with the kids/grandkids and then head south. Well, that's a no go...the campground has "changed it's priorities" and are now catering to long-term winter guests. You must book in for a minimum of 4 months (maximum 6 months) and having said that, they anticipate a full campground and are taking applications for a waiting list. It's obviously become a very popular winter destination for those Canadians not wanting to/not able to go south for the winter months. They said should there be any sites available once all of the long term guests are placed, shorter term guests will be considered, however, they won't know until October. Needless to say, we are very disappointed! Now we've got to work on a "plan B"!
At 4:00 we joined a gathering over at Jim and Barb's. Fellow RV-Dreamers, Dave and Maxine, had come by for happy hour and a visit. We met Dave and Maxine in February 2013 at the RV-Dreams Boondocking Rally on Plomosa Road...good to see you both again! Notice we are huddled in the shade behind Jim and Barb's rig...trying to get out of the sun and wind! Left to right...Jim, Dave, Maxine, Vicki, Harry and Steve...
It was after 6:00 when the gathering started to break up and everyone began to head home for dinner. The end to another great happy "hour" here on the desert!