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2007-03-23 - 11:46 p.m.

So finally, I feel compelled to finish writing about our (December?) RV Adventure and the Flame Throwing man because it has now come full circle.

On our way back from Las Vegas this last week, out of pure nostalgia and longing for my old stomping grounds, we made a detour to Los Angeles....Playa del Rey.....The Hood! You people have no idea how much I miss this place...the friends there....and the club sandwiches at the bar down the street! (Rocky....if you're reading this....I miss you soooo much!)

Anyway, we were able to spend one fabulous day at my beloved beach. (We even took the cat out on the sand!)

But then, when we got back to the car.....Flame Thrower Man and his Winnebago were parked behind us! How could I not write about him now?!

So here now finally is the rest of the story that I should have finished back in December. (Here is the beginning of the story. Scroll down that page for for Part 1-3)

Supposedly, there is an un~written code that RV parks are a kind of community. Everybody's your neighbor....everybody's your friend. But the reality is, everybody is your neighbor whether you want them to be or not.....and you can only hope that they might be your friends.

So we pull in to the RV park in our rented RV that says all over it....."This is a rental RV. We are gringos. We do not know what we are doing. Look at us. It's a RENTAL. We don't have a clue how to drive this thing."

I swear....that is written on the side of all rental RVs.

Most of our other "neighbors" have the million dollar "second home" motorhomes. That's the kind of clientele that this park mainly attracts. High end. Ocean front. Retired. Wealthy. But anyone can stay there. Like our friend, Flame Thrower Man.

He lived in a trashed out old 1970's vintage Winnebago with an air horn on the roof that he used to summons his buddies. If he wasn't on his cell phone making some kind of drug deal, he was honking the air horn to gather his posse. He seemed like festive kind of guy.

So one night, we're sitting in our overly gringo~esque rented RV, putting cutesy Christmas cards together, (a job I was hired to do by my former boss) when we notice that one of the million dollar RV's across the way is starting up a little bonfire. Now you really had to have been there for this, because at this point the whole scene was like something out of TrailerLife Magazine. But in a short time, it turned into a scene like something out of Deliverance!

Well. Flame Thrower Man was not going to be one upped by some million dollar RV with a wussy bonfire across the way, so he honks his air horn and summons his posse. For the longest time, him and his friends haul wood pallets out of every conceivable storage place in the Winnebago and start hatcheting them up into kindling size bits.

Then he brings out the MASSIVE flame thrower. I mean, MASSIVE INDUSTRIAL STRENGTH FLAME THROWER. This is not something you're going to find at Home Depot.

Of course, within no time, he has a MASSIVE bonfire. He yells over to us, as we sit looking out our window, "Hey, if we get too loud or anything, just let me know, OK?!" He seemed friendly, and almost like he was inviting us. Also, we'd seen him partying with almost everyone for the couple of days we'd been there. So after an hour or so we wandered over and brought out a bottle of Wild Turkey.

Almost immediately a chill hit the air. The friendliness was gone, and awkwardness set in. People stopped talking and we all just stared at the bonfire. After a bit, we realized that the last of the remaining crowd were his children. Just as one of the kids, probably 14, grabbed the bottle to take a swigg, a car pulled up. He immediately set the bottle back down with out having even unscrewed the bottle cap. (I would have never have brought out the liquor, if I had known there were only kids. It was dark out by then....and all day it had been a crowd of 20-40 somethings.) Flame Thrower Man went into his Winnebago and slammed the door. A woman came and collected the 6 kids.

We collected our Wild Turkey and went back to our "house."

Hmmmm. Really, you had to have been there. All in all, it was a fabulous trip.....even though I got the flu, had to use the public toilet because our RV toilet was....uh...finicky, could only take "military showers", could not drink the water out of our faucets (or wash my hands with that water), and had mice and rat poop in my bed.....I'd still do it again. Really!

Click here for a tiny video of the park, at the very end you get a tiny glimpse of Flame Thrower Man's Winnebago parked beside our shiny gringo~mobile. Unfortunately we did not get any bonfire pictures. Oy.

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