Saturday, May 29, 2010

Bishop Mule Days (2) 2010

They still had eliminations at the fairgrounds. Tomorrow start the finals.
We decided to do things in town. Chappy and I went first to the Elks Lodge and found out that they have now a park, about two miles from the lodge, where members can camp.
We were told that very few people use the facility. I know why, Inyo County charges only $10.00 per day, and they Bishop Elks $20.00.
We also checked out the facilities at the Casino. They charge $5.00.
After visiting the Chamber of Commerce, the sporting goods store, and Vons grocery store, we went home.
The women did their thrift store thing and came home happy.
In the evening we watched "How to succeed in business without really trying". It is a 1967 movie and between the four of us the rating was from very good to bad.
This was a very good day though. I have only one problem now, I can not use the microwave oven using the 2000 watt inverter. The microwave oven runs, but does not heat the food.
After a while the low voltage alarm starts making noise. This means the voltage dropped below 111 volts.
I wonder whether the four house batteries are going weak.

On my morning walk I stopped at Erick Schat’s Bakery. This is one of the gold mines in Bishop, the place is always crowded. It reminds me of Dudley’s bakery in Santa Ysabel.
I like the bread from the German bakery in Los Angeles, and we always have some in the freezer. Today I bought a loaf of 12 grain bread from Schat’s. It is OK, but I can not see why people go banana over it.
After my walk the four of us went to the Bishop City Park where vendors had set up booths and one could buy anything from food to clothing.
Doreen and Dottie were looking for the lady who sold them shirts in Quartzsite. They wanted to exchange them for different sizes. The lady was not here.

In the afternoon we went to the Fairground for some mule and donkey races, and judging of riders.

The meadow where we are parked is slowly filling up.

At 7:00 PM was the official opening of Mule Days. Riders with flags entered the main arena.

Then awards were given for best teams. There was a team of mules pulling a Model A. We felt sorry for the little girl who was sitting on one of the mules, barefoot and had very little clothing on. The sun had almost disappeared and it was cold and windy.

There was also a hearse.

A team of eight mules pulling a wagon performed different maneuvers. This was quite interesting.

The rest of the evening was finals. We did not stay to the end. The weather is not normal for this time of the year; it is too cold at night.
This was an unusual day for the four of us. We thought a lot about our friend Darwin Rytting, whose memorial service was today. Darwin was a member of the Convair Camping Club.

On my morning walk I saw a Pack Team come out of the fairground, and later the Black Percherons. They were on their way to the parade gathering area. The Black Percherons are big beautiful horses.

At 9:45 AM we went to the street where we had positioned our chairs yesterday. One of Chappy’s chairs was gone. I had noticed this on my walk and he was able to bring another one.

At 10:15 the color guards appeared and then the parade got going. This parade is one of the largest where no motorized vehicles are used.
There were pack teams from the Forest Service and private packers.

Fire fighters from the Forest Service were also present.

The parade lasted 90 minutes and was very good.
At 1:30 PM we went to the main arena and watched pack teams compete. Between the competitions the audience was entertained by two clowns. They had a repertoire of old, stale jokes, but it was very entertaining.
The funny entries at the parade were also judged. The girl on a stretcher, on top of a mule, won .
I believe the pack rats were second.

Also between the competitions children were asked to come on the field and throw their shoes on a pile.
The child who picked up his shoes, and ran back to the starting point, received a pair of cowboy boots.

A team of 12 very small mules performed. They looked like ponies and it was astounding how they followed commands.

We have summer weather again.

In the morning we did some housekeeping. I vacuumed the motorhome.
From 1:00 PM to 3:00 PM we walked around the outdoor marketplace. Actually Doreen and Dottie did the walking. Chappy and I sat at the bandstand and listen to a fiddler band.
At 7:00 PM we went to the main arena for the finals. It did get dark fast and all my pictures are too dark.

I still do not get over the fact that more women than men are riding mules.
Tonight, to have some laughs, they did musical tires. Tires were laid out in a large circle and the riders had to stop when the music stopped, get of their mule and step in the tire.
The two clowns were riding funny looking wooden mules. The real mules did not want to come close to them. The clowns also shot blanks in their guns. That caused even more confusion. The riders had to practically pull the mules near the tires. Two mules had enough and ran to the exit gate. The riders could not turn them around.
Finally there was only a man and a teenage girl left. The clowns did their best that the girl won.
This was a fun evening. The weather was perfect. It was not as cold as Friday night.
I learned a lot about mules in the last few days.

Bishop Mule Days are over, so is the Memorial Day weekend.
This morning we went to a RV Park and emptied the holding tanks of the motorhome.
I had won a T- shirt and to get it had to go to the Paiute Indian Casino. I was familiar with this system and signed up for a casino card. They gave me $10.00 to play with and the T-shirt. I lost the money in five minutes. So I put another dollar in the machine and nothing happened. We left, since I did not want to pay more money for the shirt, one dollar was enough.
In the afternoon we did some reading and get ready for the trip South.
At 6:00 PM we went with Dottie and Chappy to a Mexican restaurant. The food was good.
Here are the last picture of our cow pasture, our home for the last week. Most of the campers have left. Only a few stayed, and will leave tomorrow.

We left Bishop at 6:30 AM and arrived in Inyokern at 9:00 AM.
We are staying at a RV Park which accepts Passport America. For $ 12.50 we have full hookups, a luxury which we enjoy, since the temperature here is 91 degrees F.
After a few bites to eat we left for Randsburg, a living ghost town. A few of the buildings are still used.

From Randsburg we took a small county road to Red Rock State Park. The visitor center is closed three days a week, but the camp ground is open.

Back at the motorhome we had a late lunch and a nap, and then went to Ridgecrest, to the Maturango Museum. This museum has artifacts from the very past, like tools and equipment Native Americans used,
and new things, like weapons the US Navy is testing at the China Lake base.

This morning we visited the Trona Pinnacles. The pinnacles are tufa formations.
To get there we had to drive seven miles on a dirt road. Sections of the road were bad and I had to slowly drive around holes and rocks.
It was a good test for my new Saturn. We returned to the highway without having lost any parts.

Our next stop was the Wild Horse and Burro Corral Facility. Here they have hundreds of horses and burros.
They were taken from public lands and one can adopt them. Those animals are beautiful.

We enjoyed those two places.
At the Navel Air Weapons Station at China Lake we had a disappointment. We presented our drivers licenses, registration and insurance papers for the car, and filled out the proper papers.
The lady was getting our passes ready for visiting the museum at the base.
Then she asked us whether we were born in the United States. When we said no, she called her supervisor.
I told them that I was in the army and had a secret clearance while working for Convair. It did not help.
From now on, when we travel, we have to bring our passports along.
Visiting this museum was the main purpose staying in the Ridgecrest area.

At 5:30 AM we were on the road. We tried to get close to the ocean as soon as possible. The weather people had predicted a heat wave.
When we arrived at Carlsbad at 9:00 AM, there was no sun, only June gloom.
At noon that clears up.
Now we have to get through the bags of mail and prepare for the Julian Outing, with the Convair Camping Club, which starts Monday.

1 comment:

Barbara and Ron said...

I've always wanted to go to Mule Days. Thanks for all the pictures and the tour.