Saturday, February 13, 2010

Yes, It Was a Gathering in The Desert!

It’s true.  Al, of Travels with the Bayfield Bunch, really did invite people (and dogs) to his and Kelly’s private, isolated spot out in the Kofa Wilderness south of Quartzsite today for a gathering.  I’ve known about The Bayfield Bunch (Al, Kelly and their 3 dogs), for a couple of years and have been reading their blog.  Al is known as a man who likes his solitude.  He has a very entertaining writing style, a very interesting background, a lovely family, and an extreme talent with photography.  I was disappointed when he and Kelly came to visit last week when Janna and I were grocery shopping, so we missed them then.  But  today was an opportunity to not only meet them, but also to see  (Froggi) Donna again and meet her husband Stu, as well as several other RVing couples.

Janna, Mike, Jim and I left our own desert home around 11 this morning so we could stop for lunch in Quartzsite before going on to The Gathering.  We stopped at a little restaurant that we had not yet tried.  Surprisingly, it was not a Mexican restaurant, but offered mostly American choices.  The food was decent, Janna and I both splurged on some sweet potato fries with our meals.

We found Al and Kelly’s spot with no trouble, as the road out there is well marked. When we arrived, Peter and Patty were already there.  This couple started full timing around 1999, and now own a lot in Quartzsite where they spend the winters.  In the summer they head North.

Soon, Donna and Stu arrived, followed closely by Motty and Patti, new full timers.

There was a lot of chattering going on, but we did manage to capture a few moments in photos for our friends who wished they could be there, but could not.

Al describes something to Mike:

Ellie 010

Kelly, me, Motty, and Patti respond to someone:

Jim 020

Stu and Donna listen intently to a story:

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Janna and Kelly listening to a different story:

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The Gathering from left to right, Kelly, Motty Patti, Mike, Janna (and Emmi), me, Donna and Stu:

Jim 037

More of the Gatherers, Peter, Patty, Kelly, and Patti:

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After a few hours of stories, catching up, comparing notes and plain old socializing, everyone started packing up chairs and goodies, and heading for their various corners of the region, from Yuma to Blythe, Bouse to Quartzite.

It was a very special day, and we thank Al and Kelly very much for opening their little piece of desert heaven for us to gather and get to renew and begin friendships!

A last look at their view of the Kofa Mountains:

Jim 030

Al’s blog has quite a few more pictures of today’s event, with his insightful outlook and comments on this ever-interesting lifestyle.  Thanks again, Al, we think we’ll be seeing you again sometime, somewhere down the road.


Al Bossence said...

Thanks for coming out today folks & it was muchly appreciated. Nice to meet you & doubly nice to see your growing enthusiasm & interest in Mother Nature's side of the RVing lifestyle. Maybe next time it will be us tracking you down in a quiet little out of the way tranquil place in the southwest desert:))

Laurie and Odel said...

Thanks so much for posting all the photos, Ellie. I really wish we could have been there with you all - both for the great company AND the weather! Glad to read on your blog and Al's that the boondocking lifestyle agrees with you. It must feel great to stretch out after your long stay in your urban park earlier this year.

Safe travels,

KarenInTheWoods said...

Great Blog! I have been reading and writing with Mike and Janna for a while... and loving Al and Kelly's blog too. So saw the link to yours and thought we would check you out! Great spot out in the desert and love the boondocking too.

Karen and Steve

Al Bossence said...

Thanks for coming Ellie & Jim, I'm sure Mr. BoJangles & Jasmine were happy to see you.
I really enjoyed meeting you.


Doug & JoAnn said...

Thanks for the account & pictures of "The Great Gathering in the Desert!"
You know that we were there with you in spirit! Hugs, JoAnn & Doug

squawmama said...

What a great day for all of you... Meeting our fellow full timing bloggin friends is always a highlight in our travels. I am so glad that you are having such a wonderful time boondocking. Have fun & travel safe!