Maggie’s favorite place in the whole world is the Congressional Cemetery in Washington, D.C. on the edge of Capitol Hill.  The cemetery is also a dog park.  Dogs can pee near J. Edgar Hoover, run and play in 32 fenced acres of grass, trees and headstones.  When we lived in D.C. Maggie enjoyed her daily run around the cemetery, chasing and being chased, and cooling off in the pond with BFF Lola.

As soon as we get to a new place and set up Scout in our designated campsite, our second activity is finding a dog park.  BringFido is a favorite very helpful app that tells us where to find dog friendly hotels, restaurants and most important dog parks.  I have written about BringFido before, but thought I would share our recent use while visiting with former Alaskan friend Esther in Casa Grande, AZ.  Esther had hip replacement surgery at age 90 shortly after moving to an assisted living facility.  She had lived in Eloy, AZ with her husband Dale way out in the sticks.  After Dale’s passing a few years ago, she no longer returned to Alaska in the summer.  Most of her neighbors fled the AZ summer heat, so I was happy when Esther announced her move where she will be surrounded year round with people.   

Our family met Esther, Dale and their two kids at the Turnagain Methodist Church in Anchorage the summer of 1968.  They had moved from Billings, MT and were a farm family, we had come from Altadena, CA.  We had nothing in common, but Mom and Esther became great friends.  As my father sank into alcoholism, Esther and Dale were friends we could count on.  Several years after Dad’s death, we celebrated Mom and Erv’s 1978 wedding on the deck of Esther and Dale’s Turnagain home overlooking the Cook Inlet.   

I stayed with Esther last week while she was recuperating, she is making amazing progress and has no pain! Spending time with Esther has been special catching up and reminiscing Alaska tales.  Maggie got lots of attention from the staff and residents at Garnet Senior Living, but she was not enjoying being cooped up inside, she prefers to sit outside her Airstream home during the day and watch for rabbits and squirrels, and sleeping at the foot of our bed.  Scout stayed parked in Tucson at Cactus Country RV Resort, while we were at Casa Grande.  BringFIdo found the Maricopa Dog Park Alliance, a huge dog park with grass!  Grass is hard to find in the southwest, visiting a fenced gravel and dirt park is not our idea of fun.  Driving 20 miles to this park was worth it, and made our stay in Casa Grande more enjoyable, at least for Maggie.

Esther tells me Maricopa use to be a wide spot in the road, but the advent of an Indian Casino and entertainment venue has increased the population.   Maricopa has a negative connotation for me,  because of Sheriff Joe.   

I have enjoyed my time in the desert, but I am ready to go east and see the Atlantic.  I miss bodies of water, especially oceans, even if it is only the “pond”, the Pacific is the real Ocean.  Thanks to BringFido, Maggie and I will continue to visit new dog parks along our adventure.  We are especially looking forward to visiting Congressional Cemetery in July with Lola, Tim and Liz. 

For more information on helpful apps for RVers, go to my Apps Page [click here].




  1. Alison–it’s so great that you can connect with old friends from AK in AZ! How wonderful that you can be there for Esther when she needs help. We miss you and Maggie.

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