A Most Unusual Day ~ Lake Casitas Recreation Area, Ventura, CA

A nice cozy fit.

Our day started with the question “can we get our rig out of this tight space after four months of sitting?” Bragging on my hubby for a bit, he did a fine job!  And we were off, heading north to a little out-of-the-way rec area that would afford us some down time and the ability to visit Santa Barbara and the Channel Islands.  We left shortly after 10am and counted on a normal 200 mile day, getting us in at about 2pm.  What started out as normal became anything but.

This was prior to our little mishap and yes, I was driving at the time (a little multi-tasking if you will).

About 2 1/2 hours into our trip, as we were heading up a grade on an active California freeway, I noticed a little mist on my windshield and about that time Terry, who was driving our rig in front of me, started to slow down.  I then heard those dreaded words ‘I have a problem’.  That fine mist on my windshield was radiator coolant and yes, we did have a problem.  Luckily we were able to pull off onto the shoulder and opening the hood, we found a fine mess!  The hose had become detached from the radiator (perhaps occurring when we had some recent work done on the truck?) and we had some clean-up work ahead of us.  Terry was able to reattach the hose and we started wiping down the engine, the grill, and the hood.  And no Roger, it was not because we are driving a Ford instead of a Chevy!

Terry always plans for the inevitable so we had plenty of coolant and distilled water, or so we thought.  Using everything we had on hand, the coolant didn’t even register in the reservoir so Terry left me with our home and took our “day use” vehicle to scout out more fluids.  My phone rang while he was gone and thinking it was him, I said hello and immediately was connected with the fraud department of our credit card company, who wanted me to verify a couple of recent charges.  The first was a small charge at an auto part store for today, so I knew that had to be Terry and the next, ~$1000, was for an online shopping experience, also for today.  Terry did not seem to be in the mood to stop and do some quick online shopping so I passed on that charge.  Luckily our credit card company did not authorize the charge either.  So now we have a hold on our credit card and the day just keeps getting more interesting.

A quiet little oasis

While waiting for my hubby to return, I tackled the problem of how to clean the slippery mess off the windshield and not have my butt hanging onto the freeway. My solution, poke my head through the sunroof and lean down over the windshield.  Piece of cake and just where the heck is a camera when you need one!  I had also been checking periodically to make sure no one had pulled up behind us, looking for an opportunity (if you know what I mean) and just as I was going to get out of the truck to look again, someone was looking in at me.  He had a name tag on his uniform and wore a bright vest and his vehicle read “Metro Freeway Service Patrol”.  Mr Velasquez was a pure joy to see (after my initial shock) and insisted on staying with me until Terry returned, and stayed until we added another two gallons of fluid and started the engine.

Home at last!

What should have ended with us pulling our rig into Lake Casitas Recreation Area at 2pm was pushed back to 6pm instead.  Ironically some friends of ours recently had a horrendous 400 mile day in their RV,  finally finding a site that would accommodate their rig.  Their planned stop  did not work out and although the park was rather empty, they were told there were no sites available for them.

After we knew they were safely at their final destination and had tossed back a stiff drink, we chuckled as we thought of Nina’s expression and comment when she heard the news “no room for you”.  Being from Denmark, she has a delightful accent and is full of spunk and we couldn’t help but laugh at the image.  So, Nina and Paul, if you are reading this, go ahead and have a chuckle.  Better yet, laugh out loud.  I insist.  I think we got it comin’!

Terry, enjoying a glass of Pinot after a long day on the road.

Life sure has a way of reminding us that there are going to be obstacles along the way so better to roll with them if you can, and it makes the good times so much sweeter, don’t you think?  What started as a most unusual day is ending at Lake Casitas, with the light fading from the sky in a quiet campground,  frogs and crickets all around us providing a melodious symphony.

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16 thoughts on “A Most Unusual Day ~ Lake Casitas Recreation Area, Ventura, CA

  • So, are you at your destination for the day? I wasn’t sure what was happening at the end. Or am I kind of slow?

  • What a day and I’m happy it ended up with you being able to relax in what I am sure is a beautiful campground. I love the area from Venture to San Luis Obispo. Santa Barbara is a wonderful place to explore. I’ll be looking forward to your “adventures”

    • It was quite a day and we were glad to end up in a nice quiet campground. Wish we were going to be able to get as far up as Sequim on this trip but unfortunately we don’t have enough time. Hopefully we can head up your way on a future adventure. Hope all is well with you and Chris.

  • After reading your blog about yesterday’s experiences, it obviously must have been a relief to finally arrive at Lake Casitas. Terry looks a bit tired in his picture with his glass of wine and we are sure it was quite a long and trying day for the two of you. Sure glad you made it safely and now you can enjoy your trips around the Santa Barbara area for a few days. It is really a great area to explore.

  • I agree “where is a camera when you need it”. I think that adventure, particularly the window washing thru the sunroof, would have gone viral on Youtube. I’m glad you made it safely to your destination. 🙂

  • Wow…and your very first leg of the road too LOL. Just goes to show you really need to switch to a motorhome (hehe….inside joke for those who might read this and wonder). Anyway looks like you ended up in a really nice park and with appropriate drink in hand too. Kudos to you for making it through the day with a smile. Miss you guys!

    • Nina,

      Thanks for the motorhome plug but Terry’s not buying’ it yet! I’m going to continue to work on him though. It certainly was nice to end our day in a quiet campground. I’m sure that will change as we near the weekend. Miss you guys too and hope to meet up on the trip back.

  • life on the road is always filled with new adventures some good and some bad. we have always felt that the good times far outweigh the bad. we have journals of our travels and now look back and laugh at things that at one time we felt we’d never get thru. ha ha it is always so great when you meet some great helpers like you did. i did have a great laugh and such a picture i have of you leaning out of the sun roof and having someone looking at you. shock ,giggle huh. glad to hear all is good, we’ve had both a 5th wheel and a motorhome and there are good things about both. you are in such a beautiful area, ENJOY THERE AND EACH OTHER!!!charlie and kay

    • Thanks Nancy! Just wish my hubby hadn’t taken off with my camera when he went to the auto parts store. Not that a picture of me sticking my behind out the sunroof would have been a very flattering pose! I am enjoying your blog very much!

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