Friday, December 30, 2016

Yuma Swap Meet and Rain

Friday, December 30th. Can’t believe we only have one more day of 2016, it just seems so odd. No complaints though, this is indeed the way to spend the winter.

Morning sunrise
Today I was up by 7:30 and noticed the thermometer reading was 59F outside. That meant a warm walk for a change so out I went.                                                                                               
 After breakfast, today, Bill and I rode with Rob and Pat into Yuma one more time. We followed George and Suzie and Gerry followed us in his own truck.

We're here!
Our plan was to go to the Yuma Swap Meet and then go our separate ways after that. So, the convoy was on the road at 9:30 as planned. It was our first time there and it didn’t impress us. It seemed as if we were too early for a lot of the vendors and there were a lot of vacant spots.

Suzie and Gerry up front
Pat following behind

George and Rob checking things out too

I'm sure we’d go another time, another year and see if it was busier. We all managed to poke around at things we were interested in and each of us left with a bag. I found a cool pair of stretch pants in an Arizona theme for $5 unsure of how they would fit but after trying them on at home, I love, love, love them! Maybe another time I'll post a picture wearing them.

We left the meet and George and Suzie headed back to the park, Gerry had errands to run and the four of us went to the Goodwill store. I had found a few things in my closet that I was prepared to part with for one reason or another so dropped them off upon entry.

This store is very unorganized and I found prices to be higher than expected but I was perked up with the announcement that everything in the store was 50% off. Bingo! With a little searching I successfully found 3 pcs. of clothing for a total of $6. Can’t beat that.

We each needed milk and a couple of other things so we stopped at the Wells Fargo bank and then Albertsons. 

As is usual, we came out with more than our 3 things. The sun came out briefly and it turned quite warm. I figured it would be a good afternoon for a swim when we got back.

That didn’t happen, the clouds took over, the sun disappeared and the sky opened up slowly to light then heavier rainfall. It suited us to stay inside, we were destined for a snooze anyway. After a bit of rain, Bill thought he would go outside and take the brush to the tonneau cover of the truck. It never seems to come clean.

Took this through the Suite window and love that it
shows Clemson's reflection, watching Dad
While preparing another batch of cookies, Rob tapped on the door and pointed to the eastern sky. There was a beautiful double rainbow arcing the sky, one like we’ve not seen in a long time.

In the rain, there were 3 of us with cameras outside taking pictures before it disappeared. It lasted a really long time in its brilliant grandeur. Rob and Bill wanted to search the ends for the pot of gold.

Tonight, for supper, I prepared pulled pork on a bun from leftover pork loin that we had in the freezer. A salad topped it off and we settled in for the evening. I'm glad I had something to prepare indoors when it wasn't really barbecue weather.

It was another good day, made even better when we checked the 6 o’clock news back home (at 4 pm) to hear of the snow and cold they are experiencing. They are getting some crazy weather for sure, up and down, rain and snow but they seem to be taking it in stride as a typical Ontario winter.

Thank you for following along today. Your comments are always welcome.

We May be Retired and Living the Life, but.......

.......we still enjoy a quiet day once in a while.

Thursday, Dec. 29th was just that kind of day. I was up by 7:15 am and quickly checked the day’s forecast. It’s calling for a high of 68F and full sun. I’m glad we decided to stay put for the day.

Bill was still sleeping when I grabbed the little camera and went out for my walk. The air was cool but I could tell the clouds were soon going to be pushed out of the way giving the sun control. The eastern view of the mountains behind the park was beautiful.
After checking blog posts with a cup of steeped tea, I hopped in the shower. It is nice to be in a park and have water at our disposal. It was a nice long shower. There was no wind to speak of so we put the awnings out to keep the Suite cool inside. Before long the thermometer outside was reading 77F and inside it was 80F, a gorgeous day.

By 10 am it was warm enough for shorts and a tank top. Bill cooked bacon and eggs on the Weber Q and we sat and enjoyed our books after breakfast. 
Rob next door in his muscle shirt waxing his rv
Told you it was a hot day!
We soon realized we could use the sun shade we bought so zipped it on. Bill usually prefers the shade and I choose the sun every time.
Bill and Clemson were happy for the sun shade
I slipped into my bathing suit and sat in my lounger for a while before deciding that the sound I heard was the pool calling my name. Bill promised to join me once he finished his book so off I went. I was quite happy savoring the quiet and soon Melinda joined me for a dip and some more tanning time. The company was nice. I can't get over how there is never anyone else at the pool when I go.

Two hours later, Bill came to cool off and after a quick swim we walked back together, just in time for Happy Hour. It sounds funny to say we have ‘regulars’ for happy hour but we really do! We welcome anyone new who’d like to stop in but we also enjoy the same friends each day.

We have a lot of laughs together and the days seem to be staying warmer longer making it harder to say good-bye. Today before most arrived for H.H. Clemson surprised us by jumping up on Suzie’s lap.
I really do like you, Suzie

There are first times for everything
Clemson gets a Suzie fix
He has been avoiding her, and everyone else, since we arrived here. Earlier today he even allowed Pat to pick him up when he visited their site.
Clemson sharing the love

We split up shortly after 4:30 and prepared our own supper while the sun set beautifully. We had chicken breasts and potatoes on the barbecue with the last of our pumpkin pie for dessert.

Gerry and Melinda relaxing before supper

Gorgeous evening

Sunset at 5:45 pm

It was a great quiet day. I like those days too! Tomorrow we’ll all be on the road again to Yuma for another new adventure.
This was the picture on Pat's phone yesterday
at Los Algodones

Thank you for reading along. Your comments are always welcome!

Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Los Algodones, Mexico

Wednesday, Dec. 28th 6 of us decided to leave Pilot Knob RV Resort and drive to Mexico. This would be a brand-new experience for 3 of us, Gerry, Bill and I, and I was so excited!

I was up by 7:15 and got in a mile walk around the park, meeting Rob and others doing a similar thing, before Bill got up. He has gotten involved in a good book called The Forgotten by David Baldacci and was up until midnight reading! This is rare, Bill doesn’t usually read books and he doesn't usually sleep in like this.

I’d heard as much about Los Algodones as I had about Quartzsite so knew it was a must see, must do. With passports in hand, Bill drove Melinda, Gerry and I, following Rob and Pat in their own truck. The weather wasn’t perfect, cloudy and a cool wind with temperatures around 66F at 10 am. Deciding what to wear was the hardest part.

Our destination was only about 5 miles down the highway and after passing some interesting signage, we arrived at the parking area. You pay $6 to park here for the day and walk across the border to Mexico. Capiche?

Following Melinda’s, Rob’s and Pat’s directions, us newbies followed along through the walkway into this unique shopping area.
Pat modelling a sombrero style hat

Bill modelling an apron

Guess who, getting in the act

A glimpse of our group and the vendors
My sister, Gayle, advised that I practice saying “non, gracias”.

After walking the closed in sidewalks between a multitude of vendors for an hour and a half, I was really good at saying “No thankyou”. WE HAD A BLAST!! It has been a long time since I have enjoyed myself so much in such a short time. The vendors were constantly coming up with new and individual ways of offering their goodies. "I have a store full of junk to get rid of", "I have many things that you don't need".

I was the only one of us wearing shoes that were leather instead of running shoes so the young and older boys were constantly offering to shine my shoes. I should have given in to one for $2 so I could see if there was as much interest.

Bill and I found a few things that with some bartering, we picked up for a steal. The best things were those things that were done right before our eyes.

A very pleasant looking Mexican made my zipper pull
just in time, as mine broke yesterday

Pretty neat watching him make this for me

You knew it was an original.
Now we will know who we are!

We noticed that there were many, many dental offices along the street as well offering free check-ups and $20 teeth cleaning and vision centres offering free eye exams and eyeglass lenses starting at $19 for single vision to $39 for progressive/bifocals. Unbelievable, another time for sure.

Bill noticed this water tower over our heads
To top off the fun we met at the tiki restaurant (no that isn’t what it’s called) for a lime or strawberry marguerita and a real Mexican lunch.
Tiki hut serves drinks at the bar
 The laughter ensued as we ate and drank. 
Gerry and Melinda
Rob and Pat

Bill and I

My chicken quesadilla, beans, rice and salad

Now we know why there was such laughter!!
I see 5 marguerita glasses and 1 beer bottle there
All I can say for sure is that when you feed 5 people super-sized margueritas, funny things are bound to happen. This was no exception.

Last stop was to the Purple Pharmacy for our allowed bottle of alcohol, if we chose to buy one. Most of us did and I found my Kahlua for $7.25 and chocolates for a treat.

When we left to get in the line to cross the border again, we were amazed to see no less than 75 people were doing the same thing. The sun was beginning to come out by now and the day warmed up nicely. With no more than a 25-minute wait, we had our passports checked and were on our way back to the park.
A happy bunch ready for home
Lineup for the border and there is another mass of people
down around the corner!
Back home, Bill and I changed into shorts and we joined George and Suzie, Rob and Pat at Melinda and Gerry’s site. Retelling the day’s events to George and Suzie was fun and no doubt, it will be a story told over and over among friends.

In the line up to cross the border

We were still pretty full from our lunch so settled for a bowl of mushroom soup for our supper. There was an amazing sunset again making the sky a gorgeous show of pink.
This day will go down in the books for me as pretty close to perfect. The vendors, although totally repetitive in their desire to share their wares, were a delight to me. Most had an awesome sense of humour and they made my day all the while I was walking away saying no thank you.

One in particular offered to sell Bill motorcycle saddle bags to which I replied “we don’t have a motorcycle” and he returned without any pause “a motorcycle is included!”. A real treat and I loved every minute of this adventure.

Now Bill has his own blanket for those cool evenings

A private joke for me, I love puzzles and I'm finally
learning the location of the states

Good night

I hope your ‘hump day’ was just as enjoyable and thank you for sharing in mine. I love reading your comments.

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Fell off the Blog Wagon

Tuesday, Dec. 27th draws to a close and I realize that I have missed a day of posting. I know that isn’t a big deal in this blogger’s world but I was trying to write something each day so I didn’t forget what I did!

So, I’ll search my memory and catch up, briefly. Monday, Boxing Day, was the perfect kind of day for me but then Tuesday, got even better. I know I was up by 7 and out for my walk. I ventured through the gate and out in the desert to take a picture of my sister's Montana, before they pulled out.👇
Right there in the middle, brought in by my 300 m lens
Back home, during the winter, Bill and I would never go out on Boxing Day. It usually didn’t have anything to do with the weather, for once, but instead because of the crowds and traffic on this crazy shopping day.

Here, apparently, they don’t go crazy on the day after Christmas, Thanksgiving being their big spending extravaganza on Black Friday. Works for us as we didn't want to go anywhere anyway! So, when the sun shone brightly, I found myself settled in my chair outside with my back to the Suite, facing the south.
This is the spot, but this photo was taken on Christmas Day
It was kind of funny, because I was in a sleeveless top, lightweight stretch pants and bare feet enjoying my book and we had visitors periodically. It didn’t matter to me that I had a couple of chapters left of my James Patterson book, friends come to talk and I put the book down. It will always be there for later.

The funny thing was that the company, George, Suzie, Melinda, Rob and Pat, were all layered up in jackets, socks, shoes and hoodies.
George, Rob, Pat, Suzie
They commented that I must be in a different world because of my attire. This is the thing about the desert, if you are in the sun, out of the shade and out of the wind, the temperature rises at least 10 degrees. I had a prime location.

From this......
Other than a few walkabouts around the park, I didn’t move much until I finished my book. I chatted with one of the staff from the park, who spent the whole day trimming one of the 65 palm trees.
To this....

And here is a closeup
Then I walked up to the Library, which is next to the Laundry,
Original, eh?

which is next to the pool, the shuffleboard,

hot tub, 

and office and exchanged my book for a couple more to read.

Happy hour was held at George and Suzie’s until the shade from their tree chilled us enough to move on home for dinner. It was leftover night so we warmed up spaghetti sauce inside. Bill had his on a bun, a la sloppy joe, and I cooked a piece of spaghetti squash to eat with mine. A piece of pumpkin pie for dessert and we settled for the evening.

Tuesday, you wouldn’t think it would get much better, but it did. We woke up around 7 am to the sound of something outside, only to find out later (at Happy Hour) that it was a sudden gust of wind. There were 5 of us who witnessed the instant brief burst. Weird, as it calmed down immediately.

After our walk at 7:30 and reading blogs, I set to work putting the Christmas decorations away. Bill and Gerry went into Yuma to Hobby Shop surf so I worked pretty steady without interruption. Again, different than at home, with a house, when I left the tree up until January 1st. Here, we value the room more than the tradition and I was happy to tuck things away.

That done, a quick dusting and out the door I go. Gotta’ get out and enjoy this great day, warmer at 65F than yesterday’s 55F. I put Clemson’s leash on him and we went for a nice walk out the park and west on Frontage Road. The weather was grand. With a cup of tea, I sat once again outside in my valuable spot this time in shorts and tank top with my new book. It’s called Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson, a new author for me but a mystery so right up my alley.

Again, I watched people walking by in snuggly jackets zippered up. The slight wind and shade was definitely cool. By 11:30 the boys were long back and Bill settled outside with his book too. Enough of this, I need to take a dip. I invited Melinda to join me and we spent about an hour and a half together at the pool. The water was refreshing and we relaxed in the sun, touching up our tans.

Happy Hour was at our place and it was the first day in a long time that everyone was warm for the whole time. There were shorts and tees as evidence at 4:30 when they left for home.

These days are pretty special, not much here to worry about and we learn to take things slow and enjoy the company of others. I barbecued and grilled Tilapia filets and half of a sweet potato for dinner. 

The sun is setting a bit later each evening, we love that! 

5:50 pm
Tomorrow will be something different but you’ll have to wait to read that post.

Thank you for reading along. I love receiving your comments!