It only took 1 1/2 hours to drive from the mountains to Douglas, at only about 40 mph. Before anything else, I filled my gas tank and propane, which had lasted for ten days of freezing nights. I thought that was pretty good. That Wave 3 catalytic heater is perfect to leave on at night, it is silent, puts off good heat, and uses no power. I am glad that I didn’t get it permanently installed so can move it to the bedroom at night and back to the dining area in the mornings. I’ don’t feel cocky, since I know all the mistakes I’ve made so far, but at least I’m learning.
I asked about a flat place in town to sleep overnight, and was advised to go to the now-closed Safeway store. It apparently went out of business when they opened the Walmart store nearby. I parked next to the Border patrol, and not far from several semi trucks. The border patrol here uses bicycles, and I noticed that they change shifts about every six hours. They were very friendly and always parked their 4×4 nearby.
I walked over to take pictures at the famous Gadsden Hotel, where it still feels like some famous gangster from the 1940s might walk in any moment.
I spent a lot of time on the phone with AT&T arranging for cellphone minutes and data time for my tablet that would work in Mexico. It only cost $30 for each, and even if nobody calls me I’ll be glad to have it and can check my email. The next morning I checked the oil in both engines and added a quart to each. To replace my supply, I walked over to Walmart and bought three more quarts, and also a car charger for my old cellphone. Then… yes… I followed the road around behind Walmart and straight to the border crossing! I hadn’t actually known I would do it, but suddenly I was at the USA Customs, saying goodbye. I had no idea what to expect, nor exactly where to get my permits for the motor home and car, nor how much they would cost. I didn’t plan to travel past San Carlos so would stay in the “free zone” which meant I could drive the car and go by myself without a permit, but I was sure the motor home would be a very different story, and I was right about that.