We have spent most of the past week camped in the desert with the Eagles International group. This was our 11th Quartzsite rally and since the first rally we attended in 2011, we’ve seen a big change in the group. Several members have passed away and others are no longer traveling due to age or illness. Quite a few buses have been sold to younger owners who just are not joiners, so the attendance is dwindling. This year Covid 19 made a difference, too, but did not stop us. The man who had made the original arrangements tested positive last week, so was not able to attend. We had a total of 5 Eagles, 2 Prevosts, a toy hauler and our motor home. We may have been small, but we had a great time.
We didn’t shop at the marketplace vendors or the big tent as much as in the past and always wore masks when we did. Quite a few vendors and restaurants just weren’t there this year and we stayed away from restaurants altogether during the rally. That didn’t keep us from eating well, though! One couple provided sourdough pancakes and sausages for breakfast one day and another couple brought mini muffins for another morning. We had a hamburger cookout one night, a happy hour with lots of snacks another and a potluck for the last night. They say you get better acquainted with people around a dinner table and I’d have to agree. What a great group!
At the Quartzsite rally, as well as most other rallies, a campfire is a big attraction. This year, LeRoy and two other guys cleaned out their woodpiles at home and we had a good fire morning and evening. Daytime temperatures were in the 80s, about the warmest Quartzsite rally weather I can remember, but as soon as the sun goes down, everyone goes for a jacket and a seat around the fire.
The men always have plenty to talk about and if anyone has a problem with their bus, all they have to do is raise the engine cover and other owners come out of the woodwork! When they finish solving (or shrugging their shoulders about) the mechanical/electrical problems, they start on the problems of the world. No politics at all, just good conversation. Two of the guys who have been attending for years discovered at this rally that they both went to the same trade school in Kansas City at the same time in 1962-63!
At recent rallies, we’ve had several women’s activities. One rally we learned about love languages, another time we learned trivia about each other. This time, two of the ladies from the Phoenix area had a class in making flowers out of aluminum cans! We didn’t have paint readily available, so those who made flowers will have to paint them once they get home.
Almost everyone pulled out this morning headed somewhere else. Several couples came to Yuma to spend a few days so we expect to see them a little more. I haven’t heard of plans for any rallies this year, and you never know when we’ll see each other again. It is nice to know that we have friends all across the country. See you down the road!