Saturday 24 November 2007

Out and About Around Tucson

It was colder this morning, only 38F (3C) when I got up so I dressed appropriately for my walk in the desert. I took a different trail going and then switched on to one of the trails I've been on before on my way back. The owner of the park has put plastic adirondack chairs here and there in the desert. I've come across three of four sets of them so far, kind of a nice touch.

This mornng I photographed desert plants and cactus.

And here's the little Gila Woodpecker that was right outside our living room window in our mesquite tree this morning.

Later this morning we went out our first stop being to get fueled up. On Kinney Road there's a full serve gas station with the nicest people. They even wash your windshield. When was the last time that happened? And it was the best price we had found at the time. Our main objective on this little trip was to go to Camping World to pick up some more of the light bulbs that we got in Albuquerque. We only got one card as the last ones we bought in Rockport last year turn dark and consequently the light dims. We took the scenic route and drove across Irvington Road to East Irvington Road. After Camping World we drove around Tucson a bit, driving up the Catalina Highway to take some photos of the Catalina mountains.

Tucson is quite a clean city with lots of pretty buildings. I didn't take any photos of the buildings. Maybe I will another day. On our way back we came across Speedway which turns into Gates Pass Road which goes through the mountains and comes out at the junction of Saguaro National Park and the county park. It was there we saw this little guy. He's quite a handsome little coyote. He was at a pullout. People must drop food for him to be hanging around there.

We got home and had a late lunch then went for a walk in the desert. Gordon hadn't been out there yet so I dragged him with me. Here's a photo of me beside a large saguaro cactus.

And another view of our mountains and desert.

On our return we both had a brief nap then commenced watching the skies to see if we were going to have a sunset. It looked like it would be a nice one so at the last minute we drove over on Bopp Rd. (fairly close to us) for photos.

Our high today was only 63F (17C) but compared to other parts of the southwest, not bad!

Just Another Anniversary Photo

I uploaded this here so I could use it as my new avatar on the site.

Friday 23 November 2007

Hot Air Balloon and Shopping

It was a few degrees cooler this morning when I went for my walk but not a lot and by the time I got back it was 57F (14C). As I walked out the door I noticed there was a pretty hot air balloon over the mountains so I aimed my walk at the balloon and walked quite far out into the desert to get some photos.

See how the sun shining on the cactus makes the tips look red.

When I first came to the southwest a couple of years ago I was disappointed that the desert here didn't look more like the Sahara but now I've come to enjoy the beauty of this desert even though it isn't just sand, in fact, it's more gravelly than sandy with lots and lots of different types of cactus and vegetation.

Here's some of the vegetation including a dead saguaro cactus or two and the paths that I was walking on. I heard a lot of sounds on my walk but didn't see anything this morning other than birds in the distance but I sure heard a lot of them.

And here's a live saguaro cactus.

Mid morning I left to go shopping and get some groceries. I made several stops the most significant of which was the SuperWalmart that we stopped at yesterday. It was no less busy than it was yesterday however I persevered since I was alone. I didn't buy anything interesting except for a new pillow as I think my pillow is what's causing my neck and shoulder problems. Let's hope this will cure them.

We reached a high of 72F (22C) today but when I got back to the RV the wind picked up and although I tried to sit outside to read, I packed it in after about 15 minutes and returned to the RV to finish my book.

By the way, we're discussing the possibility of staying here until after Christmas. Still thinking about it but we like the park, the price is good, we like the area so why move?

After I posted we noticed that it looked like there would be a nice sunset tonight so away we went to Saguaro National Park for photos. Here's the sunset:

And here's the moonrise:

Thursday 22 November 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

Today is Thanksgiving Day in the U.S. So Happy Thanksgiving to all our U.S. friends. Since we had our Canadian Thanksgiving early in October, we can now have another one! So maybe I'll make stuffing today but don't think we'll have any turkey as I made a huge meatloaf yesterday. Maybe on the weekend.

We had a rain shower overnight so I had to get up to close the windows. But I woke up to a beautiful sunshiny day and 58F (14C) ! I did part of my walk in the desert this morning. I saw three jackrabbits, at least I think they were. I couldn't get close enough to them to verify but they were a lot bigger than cottontails. Below is a cholla cactus also known as teddy bear cactus since it looks soft and fuzzy but beware it's not! If you get too close it's little barbs will jump onto you and get into your skin. Not nice!

We started out today to go to SuperWalmart and Dollar Tree. We found them both and I picked up a few things at Dollar Tree but SuperWalmart was very busy so we stopped at Food City and I picked up a few things we needed today. I'll try SuperWalmart tomorrow probably. We also went to the San Xavier Mission which as you can see is under construction. It as under construction two years ago when we were here and has apparently been under construction since 1989.

From there we drove north on Kinney Rd and into Saguaro National Park. We stopped at the Visitor Center, drove through their campground ($20/night for electric only) and took some photos throughout the park.

When we got home I immediately took myself outside to my lawn chair where I spent the next couple of hours relaxing.

We were thinking about all of you at home in Ontario getting snow. Our high today got to be 81F (27C).

Here's a photo of the bracelet I made yesterday - desert colors!

Wednesday 21 November 2007

Our First Day in Tucson (AZ)

We slept with the windows open last night. I can't remember the last time that happened. Granted early this morning I had to turn on my electric blanket but it was still great to have that option!

When I got up shortly after 7:00 a.m. it was already 50F (10C). Been a long time for that too! I walked around the park as well as around the park next door. Looks like I'll have to extend my walks into the desert in the mornings to get in my half hour walk/run. The park isn't that big.

I spent most of the day sitting outside reading and making a bracelet. Several times I walked down to the office area but no one was there. I couldn't get an answer on the phone either. Mid afternoon I walked down and finally someone was there so I paid up for a week - $77.00 - great price! I asked about getting mail and he said that was fine and we can also wash the RV! Now we just have to get the energy up to do that. He also said we could move to the back row backing on the desert if we wanted to. Things are pretty lax around here. I like it! I think we'll stay where we are for this week and maybe move back there next week. Sure would be nice to have this view from our window.

I went for a short walk in the desert this afternoon and took a couple of photos. One I think is a Gila Woodpecker. He was sitting on top of a saguaro cactus and didn't move as I walked all around the cactus trying to get a photo of him. Unfortunately the cactus was probably 20 feet tall so this is a cropped photo so it's not great!

It turned cloudy later this afternoon but we still had a bit of a sunset. I didn't go out to take any photos of it though.

Tuesday 20 November 2007

Now near Tucson, AZ

We left Deming, NM this morning at about 8:30 a.m. under sunny skies and 59F (15C). I took some photos along the way. We saw lots of trains on our way through. A couple of the were being pulled by five engines. Must take lots of power to get through the mountains.

We crossed into Arizona around 10:00 a.m. and here's the Arizona Welcome sign on I-10.

We arrived at Justin's Diamond J RV Park at Tucson at about 12:30 p.m. and were set up complete with satellites and sewer by 2:30 p.m.

There was no one in the office when we arrived. Just a board telling new people where to park and if staying only one night put the money in the box. Since we're staying longer, I guess we'll see them tomorrow. It's still a very new park and part of it is still under construction.

This is the view from the back of the park. This is where I'd like to move if we can.

We're in a pull thru which I think is for short term only since there's no electrical meter so if we want to stay a long time we may have to move. When the park is finished I think it will be very nice. This one is also away from the city which is nice but means we'll have to drive at least nine miles to get any groceries and the closest SuperWalmart is about 13 miles away.

We reached a high of 86F (30C) today and I sat outside in my lawn chair while Gordon was setting up the satellite and getting the sewer connections done. Below is the view from my lawn chair. The breeze was beautiful and I even dug out my shorts! It's supposed to cool off by tomorrow night but won't be nearly as cold as it was in New Mexico, thank goodness. All the windows are open now, the Fantastik fan is running and it's beautiful inside the RV with the crossbreeze. This is the kind of day we come all this way for!

We had a beautiful sunset tonight so we went to find a better vantage point than we have at the RV park and it was still 79F (26C) on our way back!

I'm sort of burned out on photo taking right now so you may not see many photos for the next few days.

Monday 19 November 2007

Overnighting in Deming, NM

It was 30F (-1 C) when I got up at 6:45 a.m. Time to get the heck out of Dodge or in this case San Antonio, NM! So, we packed up and left shortly after 10:00 a.m. after having taken a last drive as far as the Visitor Center of the Bosque. It had warmed up to 59F (15C ) by then. We arrived at Dreamcatcher’s RV Park in Deming, NM about 12:45 p.m., got signed in and set up by 1:30 p.m. or so and then made our way to the City of Rocks State Park some 30 miles northwest of Deming where we spent most of the afternoon. And it reached 77F (25C) this afternoon!

During the time there while Gordon was rockclimbing, I managed to call my younger sister, Margie as I hadn’t talked to her for quite a while. We had a nice chat and I managed to get a few photos of the rocks as well as these little quail that were running around the park.

They have some very nice RV sites there, the boondocking sites being right up in the rocks and the 50 -amp electric & water sites down by the Visitor Center. There are some very long pull thru sites, hmmm might have to go back there sometime.

We drove through Deming on the way back to the RV and found it to be a very clean little town with the usual SuperWalMart, a Kmart and all kinds of hotels. Wonder what’s here that necessitates all those hotels. There are also numerous RV parks as I understand that Deming is a destination for snowbirds.

On the advice of one of my chat friends, Jack Mayer we are staying at the SKP park here in Deming. The price is good and it’s easy on, easy off I-10 for our early departure tomorrow.

Since we’re only overnighting we didn’t hook up any satellites so we’re borrowing a local wifi network. Since we had to go out to find it, I won’t be on chat tonight, folks!~

Sunday 18 November 2007

A Day of Nothing

We're traveling tomorrow so today we did absolutely nothing. Well, I cooked some pinto beans and I might vacuum later but as of now all I've done is walk this morning, breakfast, shower, cleaned the bathroom and read with maybe a little nap here and there.

Lately we've been on the move constantly either traveling or sightseeing and it was coming to the point where I was feeling very tired. Usually when that happens my body reacts so today my stomach is upset. I took this as a sign that I needed a day off!

So today's photo is one I took in Santa Fe this past week.