Saturday, February 28, 2009
Friday, February 27, 2009
Things have been pretty relaxed around our camp the last couple of days at least for me. Yesterday Brenda wrenched her back so she was pretty stiff yesterday and only a little better today. But it is improving hour by hour so there is hope for tomorrow. I did some running around today, a trip to the Flea Market, Wal-Mart, and then Auto-Zone to pick up some more stuff to polish the bus and then finally over to get the Jeep washed.
And with Brenda down for the count so to speak I even got to do a little grocery shopping, not often that I am trusted with that job.
Today is my oldest grandson's birthday and I am sure that back home in Calgary there will be a very loud and riotous crowd celebrating that this weekend. Happy Birthday Luke.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
Monday, February 23, 2009
Saturday, February 21, 2009
We are just enjoying the beautiful campground we are in and the abundance of birds that are flitting about. Off in the distance is the constant pop of small arms fire, either Afghanistan is just over the hill, or there is a gun range down the road. It goes on from dawn to dusk on the weekends but usually doesn’t start until mid-afternoon on weekdays. Also there is an Archery range just across the road but that is a much quieter sport so other than the dozens of trucks parked there it has little impact on our peace and quiet.
On days like today it is difficult to conjure up something exciting to write about and I am not going to bore you all our comings and goings just the exciting ones, like laundry, come on who doesn’t like clean clothes!
I have read a lot of blogs over the past few months and it appears that amongst RV’ing bloggers talking about where they ate and how it fit their usually tight budgets is second only to how much they paid for their last tank of fuel. Hey thinking of that has anyone noticed how when the price of oil tanked, the stock market did too, Maybe if we drive the price of oil back up our investments will follow suit. Well, it was just a thought and my bet is it will work as well as the plans Obama, Harper and their lot are implementing.
I don’t spend as much time talking about eating out as others for a couple of reasons, first Heather teases me when I do, and secondly a more important reason. I am traveling with what has to be one of the best cooks on the continent and we’ve been to 4 provinces as well as 2 territories in Canada, 26 states in the US and a couple or three states in Mexico. We have eaten in local favourites all along the way and even in some famous “cooking” folks establishments such as Paul Deen’s, and Uncle Bubba’s in Savannah, Georgia, but they all come up short when I compare them to the cooking I get back at the motorhome. I guess it is selfish, but eating Brenda’s culinary delights is my favourite food. Her repertoire covers all the popular food types from Mexican Quesadilla’s to her own downtown Dogpound “Frozen Peanut Butter Pie.” We only pop out for a meal when we happen to be doing something that stops us from getting back to the RV or on those rare occasions when I can talk her into taking a break and letting someone else do the work. Even the best cooks need to take a break now and then and those that love them just have to suffer through those breaks.
Friday, February 20, 2009
Thursday, February 19, 2009
Now from this viewpoint you can look out over the whole Phoenix complex, a lotta folks down there (3.5 to 4 million), and way off to the top right of the photo is where our outfit is parked in Usery Mountain Regional Park. It is hard to imagine all of those folks living down in that valley where they need to import almost everything except the sand to build their foundations.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
Other than those exciting forays into town we just chilled here in camp and enjoyed our surroundings. This is truly a beautiful spot, thanks Sandra for the tip.
A view of the mountain they call Scarface here or Pass Mountain.
Monday, February 16, 2009
This park is run by the Maricopa County and has a lot more space between rigs than most RV Parks. There is power and water at every site and there is a dump site centrally located so we should be OK here for a week or two. There are clean washrooms and showers available as well. It is nice to hear the birds and set out amongst the desert flora and fauna and enjoy the warm afternoon sun. We have signed up for a week and have the option of adding another week after that if we like, so I guess we will just have to see how it goes and how long it takes us to recover from the big move.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
This is looking down from the Apache Trail into the Fish Creek Canyon.
It is certainly a beautiful drive one that should be on every visitor to the areas to do list. And just imagine what a quaint little village Phoenix would be without the Salt River Project.
Thursday, February 12, 2009
On the way to our shopping trip we thought we'd take a run north of Mesa to check out the Usery Mountain County Park that Sandra had told us about a few days ago. We drove into the place and fell in love, it was a beautiful sunny, crisp morning and the birds were singing and the vistas were perfect. Once around the campground and we changed our plans. We will now stay where we are for another few days and then Monday we'll move over and try to get into the Park. It has beautiful big sites that have water and power, and a dump site centrally located. I am going to try to upload a bunch of photo's I took there this morning. Right at the moment the park is full and there are a few rigs in the overflow, but it is a long weekend here and I imagine all the folks celebrating Presidents Day will be moving on back to their jobs next Monday or at least I hope so. I would imagine if we are successful getting into this park we will be in the Phoenix area for another week or ten days before moving on.
That meant we could reschedule visiting George and Shirley till next week on a day that is more convenient for us all. But nevertheless we picked up some of those steaks as Mick and Jeff are coming over tomorrow night for supper and we wouldn't want to run out.
Wednesday, February 11, 2009
We rolled into the KOA right at noon and got set up here. Later in the afternoon we headed over to Gilbert but no one was home at Mickey and Jeff's so we came back and our dinner. Mick called and I decided I'd pop back over and have a visit with her, Jeff and Uncle Brent. Uncle Brent left Wednesday morning to head over into the Palm Springs area to do some visiting over there.
After getting caught up on our grocery shopping at Wal-Mart this morning, Brenda and I went back over and spent the afternoon with Mick and Jeff and did a lot of catching up. We had a great visit and didn't even review to many of those old childhood stories.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Well it is time to move on. We have been here for just one week but want to get up to Phoenix and have a visit with my uncle before he heads over to Palm Springs to see his sister, my mother, who is visiting with some friends over there. Sounds like the whole family has headed south to escape the cold, but never fear we still have all our kids and grandchildren left in the North Country. We are not sure but we will probably come back and spend some more time here after we get done visiting with Uncle Brent and my cousin Mickey in Gilbert and hopefully get to pop over and see George and Shirley in Peoria. We'll probably hang our hats at the KOA in Apache Junction at least for a little while.
We have certainly enjoyed our time here though, the desert is wonderful for my walkabouts and it is pretty peaceful as well as picturesque. We ran in and watched some of the Old Time Fiddlers contest in Ajo over the weekend and even managed to catch up on our laundry.
Today, Monday, we headed south to Puerto Penasco down in the Mexican state of Sonora. It is about and hour and half south of our campsite and you need to insure your vehicle for driving in Mexico, but there are vendors in almost every nook and cranny in Ajo, Why and also in Lukeville right at the border crossing. It is always an eye opener seeing the differences in ways of life that a small black line in the desert makes. There is a lot more visible poverty on the Mexican side than on the American side of the border, I guess that is one of the big drivers for the illegal immigrant problem. There certainly has to be a huge difference in government programs north of the border and it makes one wonder what the Mexican government spends the money they generate on. Certainly not roads or picking up garbage.
Here are a couple of the storekeepers along the Dirt Mall in Puerto Penasco.
That said the people are friendly and although it is much different we like to run down and do a little shopping and especially pick up some of those great fresh shrimp. Every time I go I say I am going to learn Spanish so that I can converse or at least figure out what they are saying about me. The locals speak excellent English as a rule and certainly make a better effort to understand me than I do them. The shrimp really are an oxymoron as you can get BIG shrimp down here for a pretty reasonable price. Needless to say we will be eating shrimp for a while now.
Here is a shot of the Organ Pipe National Monument just north of the Mexican border
Saturday, February 7, 2009
They grow their hummingbirds big around here!!
February 2, 2009
We left Quartzsite this morning after stopping in town at the Post Office to pick up our replacement Pressure Pro controller. The one we have sets off an alarm once the tires warm up and reach their operating temperature, or at least it used too. Like a lot of mechanical things once the replacement was in hand the other one worked perfectly all day. Well I will change it out anyway and test the new one on our next move. Not sure when that will be though.
We headed east on I-10 over to Buckeye and then caught Arizona 85 south to Gila Bend. Once we got there we pulled into the Shell station and emptied our tanks as well as filling up on fresh water, propane, and diesel. The diesel and the propane were a little higher than down the street but what the heck it's a good company and needs our support. Any place that has a free dump station and fresh water can use a little support from the RV crowd.
Once we got everything filled that needed to be filled and everything that needed to be emptied empty we continued on down 85 towards Why. We stopped in Ajo and Brenda picked up a couple of things that we needed for supper and I unhooked the Jeep. Why is 10 miles south of Ajo and there is a great spot here for boondocking, one problem, no internet. But we have good phone coverage so the internet will have to get along without us for a while. I will try to keep this blog up to date and post it when I get a chance.
We got our outfit all setup complete with solar array deployed and hummingbird feeder filled. You barely get stopped in these areas before these little beggars are looking in the windows wondering where the feeder is.
February 3, 2009
Tuesday was a camp day. We never left our site other than when I went for my morning walkabout. I do love the desert here. There is not a lot of vegetation but the creosote bushes and the barrel cactus are all over the place but there are still openings so that you can walk for miles with no destination in mind. Off to the south of our site there are a lot of saguaros so it is really quite picturesque especially this year as it appears there has been a good amount of rain and the desert is really quite green. The sunset last night was pretty spectacular also, but I am not sure whether I will be able to get a photo uploaded or not.
February 4, 2009
The connection out here is non-existent but we are heading in to Ajo to pick up a couple of things so I will try from there. Well that didn't work, apparently Sprint is not to concerned about missing out on our business as we are are around the Ajo area. Well I believe it is possible to live without internet.
February 5, 2009
Not much happening today, we ran into Ajo and had lunch at the Estella Street restaurant, great food, big portions and low prices what more can you ask. The weather is still warm and sunny although in the afternoon the breeze picked up a little.
February 6, 2009
Once again into Ajo and scouted out the location for the "Old Time Fiddlers" contest this weekend so that is probably going to be our exciting outing for the future. The wind was up today and it was a little cool out there, nothing to bad 16C or so but cooler than we are used to.
February 7, 2009
Today we are off to the fiddling and are hoping to be able to hack into some free wi-fi and get this blog posted. Not having internet is a nuisance but we are surviving.
Sunday, February 1, 2009
We arrived back at Quartzsite on Friday night about supper time. Dennis and Denice had looked after our outfit while we were gone and also had a great bowl of soup ready so we didn't need to fire up the stove and figure out what to eat. When I had left I had cleaned out most of the perishables in the fridge as I wasn't really sure how long it would be till we got back south.
All was well with the rig and the solar panels had everything charged up to 100% as expected. It was in the high 70's Friday but dropped down to about 4C on Saturday morning, coincidentally the same temperature it was in Cremona when we were leaving for the airport Friday. There is a Chinook happening there are I believe it was up into the double digits Celsius later in the day. That dark line across the sky is a Chinook Arch and it means that we will get a warm dry wind that always breaks up the winter. Now if that white stuff was sand it would be warmer all year.
Saturday we ran over to Dome Rock Road to see Bill and Margaret but they were out and about so we visited with their neighbours Dennis and Diane for a while and then headed over to Blythe to restock the fridge. There is a new store, Ranch ?, near the K-mart but the quarter master wasn't pleased with their stock so we ended up going back to the Albertsons store at the other end of town. I managed to get the Jeep washed up while the shopping was going on. After a week in Phoenix it was covered in some sort of sooty grime, kinda scary that is what is in all the lungs of the people who live there. Well it is all shiny now and hopefully it will be a while until we head back into the big smoggy city.
Dennis, Diane, Bill and Margaret and Dennis Lang joined us for Happy Hour later in the day on Saturday and Brenda as usual had a variety of snacks there to appease all our appetites. Even a cold beer (root) for me. We had a nice visit and everybody went home shortly after sunset.
Sunday was laundry day, lucky for me Brenda got that caught up as the lions share was mine, hers was all clean from making the trip home. Dennis and Denice pulled out this morning and are heading for 29 Palms over by the Joshua Tree National Park to see the sites and maybe visit some relatives over that way. They had to get a medical exemption to stay in this site any longer as they had overstayed their permit while watching our rig. We are also over our limit and are planning on hitting the road tomorrow after we pick up the replacement Pressure Pro device at the Post Office in the morning. At this time we are thinking of heading down south of Ajo towards Why, Arizona. That is a beautiful 14 day area down there and it is also close to Mexico, for a shrimp run. The only issue with it is last year when we were there we had trouble with our phone so once we get there we will have to see whether or not we have communications. It is not so bad of either the phone or the internet works but not having either is a pain in the butt in this day and age. Even when we are dropping out of the rat race we still like to keep in touch with those that are still on the wheel. So if we disappear off the edge of the earth that will give you a hint where to start looking.