We got MM(19) moved into his college apartment.
He is back to paradise...
A pretty scene on the drive home:
I have to back up and say that I went to get my last free ~100 mile charge by the shelter, the weekend prior. Was maybe going to justify one more to help offset this drive, but otherwise DL(17) needs to practice this drive in the gas car and will be driving himself soon. So... I pulled up to the charger (happy as a lark) and... it asked me for my credit card? Alas, it is no longer free. Couldn't even get that one last free charge. (It looks like they just move the free chargers around. Another charger in the same network is free now. Nothing very practical but I just need to keep it in mind if something comes up in that neighborhood, and keep checking).
It's moot because... We pulled up to the first charger on the college trip and... It was free!
Total miles driven: 820
Total free miles: ~500
The plan was to go very practical this trip and just to charge while we were stopped anyway. But the free charging quickly changed that scenario. Stayed a little longer for free charging. Also, we got new tires. Between that and the car being so loaded down, the range was absolutely terrible on the drive down. So between that and the free charging... Was still just one stop each way, but longer than we initially planned. & we made a lot more charge stops than planned. For example, we went to Target and the chargers were free, so of course we took advantage.
Electrify America ended up being free all 3 days. Apparently because they are updating their network. I don't know. At first we weren't sure if it was just our first stop. Or just the weekend. But it ended up being free for the whole trip. Woohoo!
Our first charge stop was interesting. South of the Bay Area we stopped at the outlet mall on a Saturday. Probably busier than we have seen it. Had been more stopping there on off days. We saw *3* electric Mustangs. Never seen them before. They are cute. & we saw an Amazon prime truck charging. The Outlets have 8? EA chargers, have the Tesla chargers, the EV Go chargers, and some of the gas stations have chargers. There is no lack of chargers here. I was fascinated though because several people came and went quickly. I texted my Dad at some point and he asked if we had to wait (clearly it sounded very busy). I told him no, it was all the rich people with their super fast charging cars. We saw another Mustang charging at the hotel later, which makes me think that is the most popular electric car right now (aside from Tesla). But then I didn't see any after that. Saw some giant pickup trucks charging too, the first day. Rivian (which is a more local company, So Cal?) We stopped the same place on Monday and it was much quieter. But I saw a Porsche and two Ioniqs. Other cars probably came and went, while we went for a walk. (The first day I stayed in the car because we had it loaded with college stuff. So I watched everyone come and go). Ioniq ~ I think that's the Hyundai, they charge crazy fast. MH talked to the Ioniq guy next to us. He had just driven from So Cal to British Columbia and was heading back home. (Their 2023? model will have a 380 mile range.)
It's fascinating to me how quickly it all changes. Past road trips were all just older/retired people. Usually men. Everyone wants to talk about their cars. How fast does your car charge? What's the range? (Our car might charge slow, but have talked to a lot of people with crazy low ranges, trying to do longer road trips.) Generally no two cars were the same. This time was markedly differently. Lots of family cars and kids. No one's standing around and talking because their cars charge fast. They are running to the bathroom and/or the store and grabbing a quick charge.
I suppose I have to back up more. We had never loaded the EV up with stuff before. I think the difference in the size of our cars is negligible but MH was worried it would be too small. So we made sure to charge up both cars and were ready to take what was more practical. In the end, I think the EV had more cargo space. MH brought more stuff and there was more room. Phew!
(If we had taken my car, we never would have known we would have missed all that free charging. My car is not compatible with the fast chargers.)
$394 Hotel (saved a bajillion dollars, found a hotel 30 miles from the college.)
$242 Dining Out
That's probably all I am going to put to the 'vacation' category. This puts us to $870 of our $2000 vacation budget. I think the $1,130 remaining is reasonable for Arizona trip. (We have a free hotel for 4 nights).
We are getting a ~$1,000 inflation payment from our state. Probably next month? I am just going to throw at vacation dollars. It will give us a little breathing room for Arizona. (Food or gas will likely put us over). & then leaves any money left over if we want to visit MM(19) this calendar year. Or if any other festivals come up.
Food spending on this trip was mixed. Treated niece/MM/MM's girlfriend to a big dinner on Saturday night. But we only spent $10 on the drive home (fast food). First day we fed MM(19) for lunch but then MH and I went to our cheapie/good place by the beach for dinner. We've always gone there because it's *amazing*. Only found out recently they have $4 pizza slices. We spent ~$20 on that, beer and gelato. Saturday we actually ended up having a big mexican lunch (YUM) and so MH and I just split an entree when we took out the kids.
We went to Home Depot, Target, and did a grocery run (will absorb in grocery budget). I don't think we will do a grocery run at home, this week. MH made chili for DL(17) as requested. So that he wouldn't have to cook while we were gone. Then he forgot and didn't eat it. It's to the point I will be giving food away at work this week. We have so much food! With the *big eater* gone...
Fuel detail: $5 to charge at home, $4 for EA monthly pass (for discounts we apparently didn't need/use). Hotel had a slow charger that was on the expensive side. Not the most practical but is most of what we spent. That was $13 for 114 miles.
If we spent any more on fuel, I'd add it to the vacation budget. But it ended up being so inexpensive, I will just absorb the cost in our monthly budget.
The next few weeks are busy busy busy with film festivals.