It Was A Hot First Summer!!!
Our Summer journey started off with so much uncertainty. We had dates across the US to sit in front of Walmarts yet didn't know how we were going to pull it off. There were three of us and all we had was a Ford Expedition. No way that was going to work out at all. We decide to trade our SUV in on a down payment for a New Used 1994 RV that we named Frank short for Frankenstein. Once you see it you would agree as all the Police that stopped us took double takes before pulling us over. With Frank gassed up with the last of our funds we headed out on our Summer Tour. The Mission to hit every State in the US.
With only gas to get to our first official Walmart stop in Salem, Oregon. We realized we had no clue how we were going to pull this mission off. All we wanted to do was introduce Seven Angels Last Stop Services to the World. Our first stop Salem Walmart brought us hope for our journey. As 7 Angels opened up who they were and what their mission was. We were embraced with so much positive energy that we were able to take in enough donations to make it to our next stop. We stayed in Salem for a couple of days than headed to our next stop. Boise, Idaho or really Meridian Walmart.
Once we made it to Idaho with one night on the side of the road. The weather was beautiful. The people that stopped by in Meridian Walmart were even more interested in what we were saying about our mission as we came so far. They understood the basis and the mission of 7 Angels. They encouraged us through their donations to keep going as we were able to have enough funds to reach our next stop. Which was Utah and we had two stops there. Salt Lake City and St. George here we come.
Arriving into Salt Lake City early in the morning allowed us to see the City at Dawn. A sight you could never describe yet remember forever. We set up in Salt Lake City Walmart for a few days. We met a lot of nice people who wanted to make a difference with us. It was hard to leave cause we seen where we could help the homeless and low income families. Yet it was still our first year and we don't have the funds yet to help fix those problems. Top it off the weather was even hotter and felt great. We finally headed to St. George with the donations given.
St. George turned out to be hotter than Salt Lake City and it was tucked away in the Mountains. Setting up in St. George Walmart, we realized that the heat was hitting three digits. Whew!!! Everybody that stopped by were excited to hear about 7 Angels. We were able to hear some of the issues facing homeless population in this area. One issue 7 Angels could make a difference in and do was to buy cases of water. We were able to give out free bottles of water to those that couldn't afford water. Really to anybody that was hot and thirsty. It was too hot to not have water. We stayed there a few days and had to head to Barstow California and the fun was about to start.
They say Las Vegas is where the fun begins and just driving through we found out first hand how much it would be . As the heat climbed to 108 degrees Frank our RV decided to cut off in Las Vegas traffic. Thank God we were able to coast into a parking lot across from Auto Zone. First thing we did was go to Google. Type in the symptoms and got fix the fuel filter. We changed the fuel filter and several hours later we were back on the road. Well we thought we were back on the road.
Just after entering California traveling along I15 going up the worlds longest hill and Frank decides to cut off in the middle of inching traffic. Did we mention it was about 112 degrees than. Here we are stuck on the side of I15 with Semi Trucks rushing right by us with no room to spare. A feeling that would make anyone sick. Thinking the engine overheated due to the heat and the hill. We had no choice yet to sit there till the weather cooled off. Imagine sitting there for about 6 hours and only breeze from passing trucks. Frank finally cooled off and off we went praying to get to our destination. Well we made it as far as a hour away from Barstow California. Sad thing the heat was still around 100 degrees. Waited a few hours as the heat died down and made it the rest of the way. The morning in Barstow brought no relief to the heat. We set up in front of the Barstow Walmart and realized that it can be too hot to move around. Not many people came out in the heat and the ones who manage to come out and stop by. They were happy to donate cause if we could be in that heat than we must be special. We could only handle a few days there and was happy to head to Lake Havasu City hoping to cool off.
On the way to Arizona our good ole Frank stopped on us again. We soon realized that Frank cuts off when the heat gets too hot out. RV worse than a human. The rough part was we didn't know the weather was going to be 100 degrees this time of the year. It was so hot in Lake Havasu City that Walmart invited 7 Angels to set up inside of the store. Special thanks to Lake Havasu City Walmart cause it was very hot. After three days in Lake Havasu City we headed to Flagstaff. And yes Frank made it a very long ride and I learned to drive more at night.
Driving into Flagstaff Walmart four hours late. We still set up for the day. Just those few hours gave us hope for the next couple of days that we would be accepted. One good thing was the weather was not as hot yet we had to worry about flash rain storms. Worry did not get easier. We did enjoy our stay in Flagstaff. The people of Flagstaff were so inviting and understanding of our long term mission. We hated to leave cause we had to head back to Las Vegas and the heat. Oh Boy!!!!
We figured if we leave super early that we could beat the heat and make it without cutting off. We would stop along the way to cool Frank off. We had a plan. You know how plans really go. The temperature jump over 105 degrees and the praying started. Coming into Las Vegas things seemed ok. Well it seemed ok till we got off the exit. We stopped at the light to take a left and Frank just cut off. Can you believe two blocks away from Walmart. It was so funny that we couldn't be embarrassed. The struggle was real. The weather got so hot that we had to Uber places cause the RV couldn't make it two blocks. We stayed In Vegas about three weeks fighting with the heat. We met a lot of people who needed help and some that wanted to help. It was time to leave to do the cycle all over again starting in Boise Idaho.
We ended up in Flagstaff Arizona. We experienced the same issue of heat and RV cutting off. We decided that we would head south stopping off at Walmarts along the way to introduce 7 Angels. As we got to Albuquerque New Mexico Walmart we were told that Walmart suspended people from setting in front due to the rash of shooting on their property. We did not expect that at all. It was going to be a struggle cause we rely on donations to get by. Without Walmarts meant no donations. We had nothing else lined up to bring donations or money in. We prayed what to do and than we remembered a little town called Cortez in Colorado we stopped in. We still had about a month of free time now that Walmart stopped us. We decided to go back to Cortez cause we knew that they needed volunteers to help out cause they have a big population of homeless and low income families. We figured we could help there and do something positive with our time while we waiting for Walmart to allow us to set up again.
We reached Cortez with open arms. There were many places for 7 Angels to volunteer at. We chose a few and went to work. We enjoyed working at the food kitchens helping feed the people. We also had the chance to volunteer at an animal rescue shelter store. Learning how they bring money into their Non Profit. We learned more than we thought we already knew. We had the chance to see how non profit interact with those they are trying to help. 7 Angels seen how things could be easier and what help is really needed. It gave us front line experience. After about three weeks in Cortez we found out that Walmart is allowing us to set up again. So we started on our way back home with a lot solutions to many issues facing homeless and low income families. Once again it begins with money for us.
We arrived back into the Portland Oregon area around Oct. 1st. Believe it or not we made it back safely. It couldn't have been accomplished without the donations from those who believed and support us. Because of donations we were able to help a few people at each stop. It wasn't much help yet they said it was needed. As we are back in the NorthWest we are still moving forward and launching new programs. We know its one step at a time and do what you can with what you got. Special thank you to all the Walmarts cause with out you we wouldn't have reached so many on our Summer journey. And we thank those who donated and still donates. Next year we will reach more and do more with the help received.
Seven Angels Last Stop Services