Borrego Springs, CA

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Life at Jojoba

Several readers have expressed an interest in knowing how things operate here, and how I’m adjusting to this location change over my normal Nat’l Wildlife Refuge volunteering.  This coming Wednesday, I will have been here a month and I have to say that life has slowed down, but I have really enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere.  I haven’t had to set my alarm in a month.  This Escapees Co-Op Park is successful because it is really based on all members volunteering to keep this place as nice as it is. 

I’ve volunteered for two committees, but I want to take my time before becoming more involved.  I have lived alone for many years, and often been quite isolated at my NWR locations, so sometimes all of the social aspects of this park are a little overwhelming for me.  That doesn’t mean I’m unhappy with my decision to come here, it just means I need to slowly adjust and find what’s right for me.

Besides the pool and hot tub, there are two other things I’ve found very nice.  First are the dog parks.  Since I can’t walk very far, the parks have been a God send for exercising Emma.  She’s certainly not a retriever, but after socializing and watching the other dogs she will run after a thrown ball.  She doesn’t catch it or bring it back, but she runs and runs after it.  That’s a good thing.  I’m thinking I better get one of those throwing sticks that a tennis ball fits into.  Anyone else have one of those?  I just can’t seem to throw a ball the way I used to.  When I take her out first thing in the morning at my site, she won’t take care of business.  She just gives me the stink eye until we get into the golf cart and go to the park.  What a stinker!  I get that same look about 3:00 in the afternoon.  

The second thing I like is the extensive DVD library here.  With it dark by 5:00 right now that makes for a long evening.  There’s a fifty cent donation to take out a DVD for three nights, and the money goes toward buying more movies.  If I watched one show a night, it would probably take me a couple of years to go through everything available.  Lots more convenient than Netflix. 


Lots of sandbags are being filled here by members because of the El Nino threat.  There’s only been one day with some rain since I’ve been here, but it was enough for me to order this driving cover for the golf cart.  The seats are not all vinyl, so I ended up with a really wet deck after taking Emma to the dog park. Smile with tongue out

Yesterday I tried to install it by myself.  We’re experiencing some high Santa Ana winds, so it was really a comical situation.  It’s all one piece, and the directions said to just drape it over the cart.  Ha!  I did get it on the roof, but as I tried to move around the wind just blew it off the top.  Time for plan B… call Craig and Merikay!  It was definitely more than a one short person job.  With their help, we were done in about fifteen minutes.  They’ll be heading out tomorrow, so I got their help just in the nick of time.  Even without rain, it should help with chilly early morning drives.


Seems like my routine has been to drive into Temecula on Fridays to do my shopping.  While at the grocery store, I found some pepino melons.  I’d never heard of them.  They’re about the size of a very large egg.  I bought one as I thought it would be about one portion and I do like melons.


When I got home, I Googled it and found out it is supposed to be sweet and taste like a cross between a pear and a melon and a cucumber.  I also watched a You Tube video done by a woman that records eating things she’s never tried before.  Probably shouldn’t have done that as her opinion was that it tasted like puke!  Well, it was juicy… not terribly sweet… but I don’t think I’ll ever buy one again.  It wasn’t as disgusting as the woman reported, but once was enough for me.  Ever had one?

Well I’d better stop blabbing.  Maybe next time I’ll talk about the Dakota bread I found…

Thanks for stopping by… talk to you later,  Judy


  1. Sounds like Emma has adjusted just fine to the new lifestyle:)

  2. I have seen those throw sticks and you still need to have a good arm. When I tried it it landed about 5' away from me. haha
    Never did see that fruit before.
    glad your enjoying your new place

  3. A little more time there and you'll be giving birding tours and workshops ;-)

  4. Looks like you adjusting quite well.
    We find too that the co-op have way more social rime than we want to get into. We really enjoy our solitude.

  5. I am glad you are still blogging and keeping us all informed of your doings! We socialize with friends but rarely do anything related to the park--although I am running for the home owners association board--that should keep me busy!

  6. You will definitely love the "Chunk-It" to throw the ball. It takes some wrist action, but I find it a lot easier and it goes further.

  7. Great post ...love hearing about what you & Emma are up to..

  8. Since Emma is getting so picky about her outs, teach her how to drive the golf cart. :c)

  9. Yes Chance has ball throwers one in each vehicle and one at the house. We also have a gun that shoots the balls...but the thrower works the best. Sounds like you are keeping busy. Rain...you guys get rain? I thought it was all sunshine! The sun might shine here today! It has been a gloomy November. Happy Thanksgiving later in the week! :)

  10. Never had a melon like that. I'm suprised because Craig loves to try everything. I know I should be happy to be going off to visit family, but I think I' rather stay here. Hope the winds are not to strong at your site this winter, keep us posted.

  11. What are the sand bags for? Thought it didn't rain in the desert. Or maybe you are not in the desert anymore. Where is Jojoba?

  12. Glad to see you and Emma are adjusting. I've never tried one of those melons. If you have never tried a "Pluat", try them because they are great. They are a cross between a plum and apricot. Real sweet and juicy but very hard to find, at least in the places I've been. Have fun, watch out for the liquid sunshine.

  13. If you ever run across an "Ugly Melon" buy it. It is delish!

  14. I think it's time you and Emma got to sleep in and just relax!! Den and I are definitely NOT the social RV type. We pretty much do our own thing, and I can guarantee we would never join one of those "caravans"..Heck, they'd probably kick me out the first time I got angry and dropped the "F" bomb.

  15. Never heard of a pepino melons, but I will take your opinion about the taste and pass.
    I with you....take your time and be selective on what you volunteer for. You really need to enjoy it before you dive in.

  16. I am so happy for you...it's time to take it easy. That day will be coming for us too someday.

  17. The melon sounded ok until you got to the cucumber part. It's funny, I dislike eating cucumbers but like them when juiced with other veggies and fruits. Emma is a fast-learner and I think it's a sream that she demands to be chauffered in the golf cart. Judy, what have you created!

    I don't think I could ever join all the events and potlucks I hear folks talking about in RV parks. I do like to talk to people, but I still want to live my own life. But maybe I'm just not "there" yet.

  18. Well, that's one heckuva way to describe a fruit you're tasting for the first time: tastes like puke! Barf!

    Glad to hear about the sandbags. I lived in SoCal for many years and experienced several El Nino years ... and yes, even the desert can get hammered in winter months.

    Nice to have a choice between solitude and social doings.

  19. Nice looking cart cover. Glad you had someone to help you with it. I've seen those ball fling things and they only seem to require a flick of the wrist. Very good for folks with weak arms who want to throw the ball far for doggie exercise. But if Emma won't bring it back, you'll be doing a lot of walking.

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  21. So glad Emma has a great place to run. I have used throwing sticks a lot. I even bought one this summer to play with a dog belonging to one of my bosses. She showed a neighbor's puppy how much fun it was to retrieve and the pup learned to properly retrieve in three days. This dog was rewarded with the throw so I just threw the ball if she brought it to me and ignored it otherwise. The second day, she was dropping it too far away and the third day she was perfect. But I've trained lots of dogs to retrieve. If Emma doesn't pick up the ball, work with her in the trailer to hold it and give it. Give here a reward for giving it back. If she won't come back, work on retrieves on a long - 20-30' line. Also call her several times a day to come for a reward, and even her food. You might find another dog she likes that retrieves and make a big deal with him when he retrieves. I've always thought Emma is very smart, albeit with a boxer's personality and bet she will love ball once you get her started. I also bought 2 rubber balls that fit the thrower and which whistle. I had extra fun throwing them.

  22. Settling in at your own speed is a good thing. Same goes for Emma.

  23. Mo and I used a throwing stick for Abby. It was a godsend! Really saves your throwing arm and gets the ball out there with very little effort once you get the hang of it. Mattie wasn't all that interesting in the ball thing until recently when we gave her a "laughing" ball. It was an old stuffed ball that I have had for years that laughs when you throw it. She loves that thing!!! I tried to find another one but all I could come up with was an Elmo ball on Amazon, which I bought for 8 bucks...stupid...and yes, she loves it too, but it only makes a soft sound and not the hysterical giggle of our previous laughing ball. Something that makes noise seems to do the trick, though. Glad you are settling in and that Merikay and Craig were around for awhile for company and help. I love the Santa Ana winds. Grew up with them and they always made all the smog go away. I could see Catalina from my grandmother's house on the hill in Sierra Madre when the winds were blowing. It was the only time you see the entire LA basin, and it was always so beautiful. And no...don't talk about the fires....but yeah, things get a bit crazy during the winds, including people.

  24. Nice post. People who are fond of traveling different places can visit this place too. You must keep a road map if you are traveling to a new place as it could help you in your trip. I found the detailed Spain Road Map really helpful in my last trip to Spain.

  25. I've been away from your blog for awhile Judy. You arrived in Calfornia and I just left it. Hope you enjoy the new gig. I'd never heard of Jojoba Hills - sorry I missed seeing you there. I got a promotion to work on the Fort Sill Tribune in Lawton, Oklahoma. So I'll be here for awhile. Hoping to get back to National Park Service or US Fish & Wildlife. Happy Thanksgiving!

  26. Hope your Thanksgiving was good Judy! I think one of the benefits of living there would be that whenever you need an extra hand there should be someone around, even if your friends have left for a period of time. I bet everyone there needs a hand once in awhile.

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