Go Camp!

S1. E2 Go Camp with Aurora LaRay (Welcome to Miami - Miami Oklahoma)

May 06, 2022 Aurora LaRay Season 1 Episode 2
Go Camp!
S1. E2 Go Camp with Aurora LaRay (Welcome to Miami - Miami Oklahoma)
Show Notes Transcript

Welcome to Go Camp! I’m so glad you’re here! I’m Aurora LaRay! I am traveling with my furry-faced pride and joys: Paco and Atlas. We call a Coachmen Freelander home sweet home on the road! 

In this episode we are talking Oklahoma! We’ll be covering….

1. The Historic Coleman Theatre
2. Pandemic Travel
3. Route 66
4. And Toilet Training Atlas

Thanks so much for joining our adventure!!❤️

Welcome to Go Camp! I’m so glad you’re here! I’m Aurora LaRay! I am traveling with my furry-faced pride and joys: Paco and Atlas. We call a Coachmen Freelander home sweet home on the road! 

In this episode we are talking Oklahoma! We’ll be covering….

1. The Historic Coleman Theatre

2. Pandemic Travel

3. Route 66 

4. And Toilet Training Atlas

Right after this! 

Couch Potato to Five K by Zen Labs Fitness is a simple, free, user friendly running app. I was skeptical, I’d never tried long distance running. Couch Potato to 5K starts nice and easy. Baby steps for the win! 

Before I knew it, I was signing myself and Paco, my four-pawed running coach, up for our first ever 5K! I love that this has been something I can share with Paco and it’s taken us to trails and created opportunities to make new friends, that we wouldn’t have otherwise. 

Now, we’ve leveled up to Couch Potato to 10K. 

Thanks to Couch Potato to 5K and Zen Labs Fitness, I feel amazing! 

First things first, we drove through Downtown Miami, Oklahoma by way of Route 66. I love this town and we got our eyes on the Historic Coleman Theatre. We’re here for the Sunnyside Up Film Festival, taking place at the Coleman. It kicks off tomorrow.

The Coleman Theatre is the most elegant theatre between Kansas City and Dallas. People didn’t think a theatre like this would survive in a mining town. I love it when people are wrong. The theatre was built in 1929 as a Vaudeville Theatre and Movie Palace.  The theatre’s original pipe organ was sold in the 1970s because of some money issues, but was returned home in 1996 and I get to hear it played at the film festival’s award ceremony! 

Atlas, my youngest, came into my life in March of 2020. The RV Park I was staying at was closing, Covid-19 precaution. So, I’m packing up and here’s this stray cat. He’s adorable. I want to keep him. Then logic kicks in: RV Life, I basically live in a hallway. I live with a dog. I can’t. I can’t do it.

I realize that his back leg is hurt and it looks like he might have tried to punch his way through a crowd. I find an open vet. This cat is so cute and so playful at the clinic. My heart legit bursts with love.  The vet, seeing this happen says, “Congrats Mama”. No…. but yeah… Welcome to the Family. Let’s be honest, I’ve been yours since first eye contact. 

P.S. we’re road tripping across the county tomorrow.

Paco instantly loves him. Bringing him this cat was the best gift. He dove right into Big Brother Status. I was born to be a big brother.

I leave the cat alone for three minutes so I can finish breaking down our campsite. What’s he do? 

Shreds my Atlas. Map confetti everywhere. Like a geographic gender reveal. Boom. Congrats, it’s Oklahoma! 

I needed those maps. There’s no service after Tucumcari. Everywhere is. Closed. You are the Atlas now. Hope you know how to get across Texas. I always get super lost in Texas. He is…

He’s great at directions. It took us three months to get to Nebraska, but never not once, like that lady in the phone did he tell me to make a U-Turn on the Freeway.

Joking aside, I’m very fond of Oklahoma. The last time I came through was March of 2020. The Corral Drive-In RV Park in Guymon saved this weary, weary traveler.

I’d left Southern California two days prior to head back to Nebraska to wait out the “few weeks” of the pandemic with family. Everyone at my California Campground was freaking out, rumor had it that the state lines were going to shut down. Honestly, that seemed unrealistic, but a lot was going on that seemed beyond the scope of reality. We really didn’t know what to believe.

I made a run to Walmart, to get just enough food to get me home. I think this is a very shared experience.  It was jarring to say the least. It was like I walked in after Supermarket Sweep and Central Casting had overbooked contestants. 

After a few hours in line, I didn’t think I was ever going to get out of there. I left with all I could wrangle: a bag of Cheetos, two breakfast burritos and the last remaining box of cereal: Jolly Rancher Cereal. It wasn’t too bad. Luckily, my campground store still had a roll of toilet paper – I was one sheet to being out of toilet paper. I was very grateful for that roll of toilet paper. 

I pulled off to take a break at Meteor Crater in Winslow off the 40. The parking lot was empty accept for me and one other car stuffed to the brim, surfboards secured to the roof rack with a Maine license plate, presumably doing what I was doing -  going to where their people were.

It was eerie. The last time I’d been to Meteor Crater, it was full of life. There were people everywhere. Fun was happening. I ate one of my burritos and checked Facebook. Imagine my surprise when my entire news feed was full of posts about people taking advantage of the pandemic and going on family vacations, spreading covid19 – complete with pictures of kids hanging out of car windows and packed amusement parks. Gas stations full of people.

Other than myself and the people from Maine – all I’d seen were semi-trucks trying to get food to all the people mass buying and four mobile morgues.

For me, I was upset. I think this was the first time I was stupefied by “share button ignorance”. 

My next stop, well I did stop in Gallup, New Mexico – I pulled off because it was snowing to hard and I couldn’t see. I took a little nap in an abandoned parking lot. 

My next stop in New Mexico the town was closed down. Luckily there was an open gas station. I wasn’t even allowed to get out of my RV to pump gas. I literally had to crack my window and slip my card to the gas station attendant. He filled up my gas tank and told me, “you need to go”. I didn’t know where to stay, there wasn’t anywhere comfortable I could pull off to figure it out.

I was tired and hungry. I was out of food at this point. 

I called my Mom. My Mom is amazing. She always comes through. After a quick search, she called me back with a campground with open sites. They know you’re coming. Head on to Guymon, Oklahoma.

When I pulled into that place. I don’t even know how to describe it. I was so unbelievably relieved. The young man who checked me in. I don’t know, finally having an interaction with another human being who was also just exhausted from everything that was happening. 

To top it off. The icing on the cake. They had Lean Cuisines. I got this Macaroni and Cheese Lean Cuisine. After I got into my site. Took the dog for a little walk. Washed my face. That Mac and Cheese, it was the best meal I’d ever had – in my life. I think about that experience often and how important the small things are, whether you’re on the road or off the road – just in every day.  

We are checked into our Miami, Oklahoma home for the next few days – Miami Mobile Home Community. It’s very reasonably priced and I got a corner spot with a little tree. I love a corner spot.  It’s a very nice park within walking distance to Route 66, the Coleman Theatre, Museums, Casinos and Restaurants.  This is the perfect place to base out of if you’d like to explore Miami, Oklahoma.

My Mom is meeting me here, she should arrive in a few hours. I’m so excited. I know I should do some work, but instead of that, we’re going to take a little recon walk! Before I go… a little music fun.

I’m a big fan of road trip songs!  One of my favorites is Take the Money and Run by The Steve Miller Band.  When he was a kid, he went on long family road trips with his parents. They would listen to radio the whole time and sing along to their favorite songs. Sound Familiar to anyone else’s upbringing? 

In the '70s, FM radio allowed for stereo sound and had a cleaner signal, so Miller made his road trip anthems big, with many layers to the sound. He wanted to make sure these songs were upbeat and fun, just like the ones he loved as a kid.

(Sings and Plays Take the Money and Run).

Paco, Atlas and I found two thrift stores, (can’t wait to go thrifting this weekend), an art museum and an awesome place called Rotary Park. It’s this wooded area with a mile walking loop. There are trees. There are squirrels. There are leaves. Paco, Atlas and I love it! And, more places to eat than we possibly can.

Mom is here! We went to Otter Cove Diner. It’s a Route 66 themed diner located right there on the corner of Route 66 as you enter downtown Miami, Oklahoma. Before becoming a diner, it was a Texaco Station that was built in the 1920s.

Our food was great! Grilled Cheese and Onion Rings! So, so good! We tried to save some onion rings for tomorrow’s lunch. Definitely ended up eating them as we walked back to camp.

They also have old fashioned candy in their gift shop. I’ll take two Mallow Cups to go please and thank you! 

You may notice that I added some Elvis to my Oklahoma Playlist on Spotify. Our neighbor is a tiny Chihuahua named, Elvis. She is such a doll. I’ve been a fan of Chihuahuas since Taco Bell Dog. Yo quiero Taco Bell! 


I often get asked how we contend with the litter box on the road. I toilet trained Atlas. 

When toilet training, I didn’t take into consideration, the amount of time, the hours I’d wait in line to use my own toilet. What is he doing in there? Reading Modern Cat? How is he getting these magazines? Who is paying for this Modern Cat subscription? I need to change my credit card numbers again! He’s so smart.


I bought a toilet fast pass for my toilet. Like an amusement park front of the line pass, but for my toilet. It wasn’t cheap and all the days are blackout days. How was I supposed to know that every day is a National Cat Holiday? I believe they’re all federal. 

On the rare occasion that I do beat him to the bathroom, which is very rare. He’s a ninja. He stands outside (meoooooooooooow). He actually split the door. I know they don’t make things like they used to, but he split the door. 

 For my personal use, I ordered an outdoor compostable toilet. It’s uncomfortable for my neighbors. I apologize. It’s going to get worse before it gets better. I’m back on my fiber gummies. 

 Thanks so much for joining us! I love sharing our adventures with you! Go Camp is now available on the iHeart radio app and wherever you enjoy your podcasts.

Please subscribe, so you don’t miss our next adventure. If you would like to connect, I would love that, you can find all my social links at www.auroralaray.com.

Have a wonderful day and many, many happy adventures!