Monday, December 16, 2013

Weather Getting Warm Here - We're Headed for Chicago!

Friday 12/6

First freeze of the winter last night, 33 degrees when we got up. Cold for here, but a lot better than a wide swath of the country north of us, supposed to be in the fifties today.

Garage sale at the RV park today. Nancy took a walk around and reported that there was a nice small compressor for sale “Too bad we don’t need one since we have the truck.” she said.  Well, we don’t have the truck available when we are at home, so I went and looked. Bought a really nice, like new Husky compressor for $35! It was $110 new. I also picked up a bicycle shirt for $1.  

So we heard about Costco having a special 40 year-old scotch at selected stores. Looked on line and the Costco NW Tucson has some. Not the store we usually go to, a bit farther away but we decided to check it out. They had it - for $699.99 per bottle! No, we did not purchase any.

We did pick up a few things we needed, meds, whiskey, a Tito’s vodka, and a memory foam mattress cover for the trailer.

Back home to cook brats on the grille and watch the Blackhawks tonight. And they lost again, at least this time it was in a shoot-out, but they were outplayed most of the game. That’s three in a row, bad juju!

Saturday 12/7

Off to the monthly H. F. Coors seconds sale first thing in the morning. A much bigger crowd than we have ever seen there. Nancy picked up a few couple of things and a couple gifts.

Stopped at a Mexican meat market on Ajo for sausage to put on our pizza. Nice little market with great meat selection and a bakery. Good place to stop for bread.

Back home at 10 AM. 

Turned into a beautiful day in spite of the slight chill, about 55 and not a cloud in the sky. I know a wide swath of the country is suffering through dismal weather, makes us thankful that we are able to spend the winter here.

Took a short hike, I hesitate to call it a hike, only a little less than 2 miles, in the desert in mid-afternoon. Quite comfortable in our shirt sleeves.

Nancy made a nice dinner and we stayed home & watched TV.

Sunday 12/8

Clouded over during the night which kept the temp warmer than the last couple of  nights. 44 at 7 AM. The sun was just coming up as we left for our walk, the undersides of the clouds were red and the Tucson Mountains to the Northeast of us were bathed in fiery red light, really pretty.

About a quarter mile into the desert we heard coyotes start to howl, really close. They seemed to be in a wash about 100 yards to our right, maybe four or five of them. They were close enough that we could pick out individual howls. Two packs in opposite directions, way off in the distance, responded to them. We stood there and listened to them for a good five minutes before they settled down. Their howling also set off all the birds in the immediate area.

This afternoon we went to an excellent show with the Original Wildcat Jass Band at the Berger Performing Arts Center (which is just the other side of the Tucson Mountains) called “Let’s Misbehave”. All jazz from the 1920’s.

Dinner at from Serial Griller’s food truck and then the Blackhawks put together a good game tonight ending their three game slump. 


Regular Monday morning meeting at the rec hall, then I ran down to the Shell station on Ajo Highway and had a propane tank filled. People are always talking about the cheapest place to purchase propane, but the savings are usually not worth the trip for me.

Nancy wanted to run by Bed, Bath & Beyond after lunch, but I said as long as we were going over there BK Tacos was just right across the highway and around the corner! So... we went to BK for lunch after stopping at BB&B. Ran into Karen & Gary there.

Opened up the memory foam mattress cover and let it unfold itself and swell to full size. Looked a bit small at first, but when fully relaxed it fit perfectly. Slept well as well.

Tuesday 12/10

32 degrees this AM and a bit cloudy, so we saved our walk until later in the morning. Nancy did some laundry and then we took a short walk in the desert around 10:30.

Drove over to the East side of town to stop at See’s Candies, then hit the Beyond Bread up on Speedway where along with our sandwiches we bought a couple of delicious looking mini-pies (about four slices each). Stopped for some groceries and then back home. Another great game from the Blackhawk’s tonight, they are on a roll the last two games.

Wednesday 12/11

Nancy had her Spanish class this AM, I took the truck out for a run just to exercise it. Then did some clean up on the truck.

After lunch we took a short walk in the desert, quite warm this afternoon, about 70 degrees, but the sun was hot.

The BLM (Bureau of Land Management) area adjacent to the RV park always had a number of signs pointing out items of interest and marking trails. They are not there this year and we looked in a storage area behind the pool hall and found them all. We talked to Pericles (park owner) and asked why they were not out there this year. He was not aware they were not. He said one of the guests usually put them out at the beginning of the season and picked them up in the spring because the harsh summer weather was hard on them. Apparently whoever has been doing it the last few years did not come this year. So we volunteered to put some of them out where we knew where they belonged. Put five of them out today. We will do more over the next few days.

Food trucks here this evening and the Blackhawks play again.  WOW! Blackhawks beat Philadelphia 7-2! That’s 19 goals in the last three games!

Thursday 12/12

Off to Tucson Yoga this AM, then a quick stop at Food Conspiracy to see if they had any good bagels, no luck though.

Back home Nancy did some laundry and we relaxed. Mid-afternoon we went over to the pool hall and sorted through some more of the trail signs. Touched up the paint on a couple of them and then put three more out on the trails and used the GPS to mark the locations for three more signs. I have been marking all of the spots on the GPS so we can find all the signs to put them away in the spring.

Dinner at home tonight.

Friday 12/13

Off to the 4th Avenue Winter Street Fair this AM. Walked the full length of the vendor area, Nancy picked up a few things for gifts. The we went East on Broadway to See’s candy to pick up the free tote bag that they were out of when we stopped there on Tuesday.

Since we were over there anyway (any old excuse will do) we stopped at Beyond Bread for lunch.

Back home we had a note from the fellow who usually puts out the signs in the desert - seems he had not gotten around to doing it yet. Oh well, we’ll let him finish.

Arizona Roadrunners jazz group at the rec hall tonight, as always it was a great show. Max Glodschmidt was with the group and he is an extremely talented young man who plays a wide variety of instruments and is AZ state champion on several of them. About midway through the performance he picked up the tenor saxophone, put a trumpet mouthpiece on it and proceeded to play a beautiful piece with it. Doug Tidaback, who runs the Tucson Jazz Institute and was leading the group this evening, said he had never seen that done before.

Saturday 12/14

Cold this AM, 34 degrees when we got up. Lazy morning, then we ran into town to do some errands, stop at the post office and, since we were nearby stop at BK Tacos for lunch.

On the way home we stopped at Rodriguez Seafood and picked up some fresh shrimp. Had them for dinner and they were great.

Blackhawks game tonight and they got their butts whipped in Toronto.

Sunday 12/15

Quiet day, read the papers and relaxed, did some puttering around the trailer, cleaned a couple of compartments while searching for misplaced items again.

Blackhawks made up for their poor appearance in Toronto with a as good a game as they have played all season against the Kings. Go figure. They came within three minutes of getting Antti Ranta his first NHL shutout.

Monday 12/17

Skipped the Monday meeting (we will be gone this week anyway) and went to Tucson Yoga since we will be gone on Thursday.

Dumped the tanks and packed up in the afternoon. Headed home for Christmas early tomorrow morning.  

Friday, December 6, 2013

Cold Snap in the Desert

Friday 11/29

Nice walk in the desert this AM, only a mile and a half, but it was good to get out walking again and good to get out in the desert again. The Palo Verde seem to have grown substantially since sight lines close to the park seem shorter than before.

Stopped in the office and paid for the month, then did a bit of setting things up and reshuffling cabinet contents that had shifted during travel. Nancy did some laundry while I was doing that and that pretty much killed the morning. Beautiful day, high in the 70’s.

Went into Tucson in the early afternoon and had lunch at Beyond Bread, got the car washed and stopped at a big big Ace Hardware too get some mollys to repair some self supports that had come adrift. While there I found a nice Dewalt tool box on sale, a fair amount larger than my current one, but one that will still fit in the truck storage compartment - and it was only 20 bucks! 

Then we stopped at Camping World to pick up a new water filter since I accidentally contaminated the old one with anti-freeze. As usual we picked up a few other things as well.

Back home I repacked my tools in the new box and cleaned out the storage compartment to make room for it. Makes my tools a lot more accessible. Then I replaced the water filter under the sink, a bit of a PIA!

Blackhawks play in Dallas tonight, second half of our Beyond Bread sandwiches for dinner.

Well the Blackhawks pulled out another one tonight, went into the 3rd losing 1-0 and won in the shoot-out - after 11 rounds!

Saturday 11/30

A  bit cloudy this AM when we went for our walk and it clouded over during the day. Still doing things to get settled in - unload bikes, put out bird feeders, etc.

Made a run into town for some grocery shopping. 

Sorted out a couple more scrambled cabinets and repaired a broken drawer, then watched the Blackhawks win again - 6 wins in the 7 game “circus” road trip, not bad!

Pizza at home while we were watching the game.

Sunday 12/1

Quiet day at home, morning walk in the desert as usual. Cleaned out and organized the large storage compartment underneath the trailer as a result of looking for a few things.

New feature at Desert Trails this year is visits from food trucks on Sundays and Wednesdays, today was Serial Grillers. Turned out to be excellent sandwiches and burgers. Apparently there are going to be a variety of foods during the winter. Long wait for the food though, after we placed our order Nancy said we were out of beer, so I ran down to the Shell station nearby for beer, it is 5 miles away so it took about 20 minutes - our order was still not ready when I got back!

Monday 12//2

Park meeting this AM, then we went over to H. F. Coors to look at some holiday plates for Joan. On the way back we stopped at Target to pick up a couple of children's gifts that we selected from the park giving tree.

We also made our first stop (which will be far from our last!) at BK Tacos for lunch.

Back home we relaxed and our neighbor Jim came by and said he was ready to move his trailer. They have been next to us since last winter, but left the trailer here during the summer as they have nothing to tow it with. They had decided to move six spots down the line since the noise from the laundry room, which is the other side of their site, was bothering them in the early morning.

I wanted to fire the truck up anyway to air up the suspension so I could put my tire covers on and I had told him I would move his trailer for him. Too bad I did not have more people watching as I backed it into their new spot the first time without any back and forth jockeying!

Quiet evening at home.

Tuesday 12/3

Another pretty day after some early morning cloudiness, supposed to turn cool on Thursday. After our morning walk we sat around and relaxed then headed over to Beyond Bread for lunch (and brought home dinner!). 

Witnessed a fairly substantial accident right in front of us a few blocks from Beyond Bread. We were eastbound waiting to turn left when a southbound Jeep turned left in front of a northbound pickup - BOOM! Neither of us were watching closely enough to say for sure who had the light (the left arrow trails the green at this intersection) so there was no point in stopping. Did not appear to be any injuries.

After lunch we made a stop at Trader Joe’s to stock up for a couple of weeks, then relaxed back home.

Blackhawks play tonight. And they lost - outshot Dallas 50 to 18 and lost!

Wednesday 12/4

No walk this AM since Nancy was going to a Spanish class here in the park. While she did that I did a thorough inside cleaning, washed windows, etc.

When Nancy was finished we made a quick trip down to the Green Valley Farmers Market as Nancy wanted to get some face cream from the lady she patronizes. We also picked up a pair of leather work gloves for each of us. There is a man there occasionally that has really nice goatskin gloves. I bought a pair a couple of years ago and I love them.

On the was home we stopped at the nice Fry’s Market in Sahuarita to take advantage of the first Wednesday senior discount - always a geezer fest!

Naturally on the way home we stopped at BK Tacos again for lunch.

Food trucks in the park tonight, both right near our site. I had a pulled pork sandwich from Bubba-que, Nancy had a dinner from the Rolling Wok.

Rain this evening, not much, just a sprinkle. It rained off and on throughout the night, stayed warmer than expected. Supposed to have a freeze tomorrow night.

Thursday 12/5

Off to Tucson Yoga this AM for our first yoga class of the season. They have finished construction in the area and the city is trying to kill the few businesses left in the area with parking restrictions. There have always been meters right in front of the studio and resident sticker restrictions in the area around there, but there was a street a block away with open parking. Now that street is no parking on the side we used to use and meters on the other side. Five blocks of meters all around the studio and zero cars parked there!

When we left and headed to Food Conspiracy I said “Now we will see what a vibrant neighborhood there is on Fourth Ave where there are no parking restrictions." How wrong I was! In their infinite wisdom the city has eliminated at least half of the parking spaces on the busiest block as part of the street car construction (which will not begin running until next year!). No place to park within two blocks of the store! We finally found a spot a half block away. What a bunch of idiots! They are going to kill the business on the street before the street car even starts running.

Back home after lunch I emptied out the pantry again and took out the shelves. Replaced the tiny screws that were (not) retaining the shelf brackets with mollies. Now the shelves are secure and solid.

Blackhawks played again tonight and they lost. Bummer!