Thursday, October 19, 2023

 ARIZONA  -  DAY 27  - 10.17.23

Things got really strange here last night.  Our lights started dimming, our radio changed from AM to FM on its own and we couldn't turn it off no matter how many times we pushed the on/off button.  Our AC wouldn't kick on and we needed that!  Our first thought was that we needed to run our generator to charge our batteries.  We turned it on, thankfully its quiet and all the neighbors homes are shut up anyway with their AC's running so we didn't disturb anyone.  We have a fan so the plan was to let the generator run until it ran out of gas so we could at least have a fan on us during the night.

We had no clue what was happening but the word "possessed" crossed my mind several times.  So now plans have really changed.  We're heading straight home and not staying in the valley for a few days as planned before anything else happens.  I'm tellin' ya, if it isn't one thing it's another.   The joys of camper ownership!

We loaded up as quickly as we could because of the heat and we were kinda, sorta fearful of what else could go wrong.

Of course I have an on the road shot for you!

When we got as far as Flagstaff we met with a very smoky area.

We stopped at Sam's Club to pick a few things and while we were there we had them check our batteries on the camper.  You guessed it.  One had a dead cell and the other print out said,,,,REPLACE!  So two new batteries!

The rest of the way was uneventful, thankfully!

Upon arrival we emptied the fridge and went to a meeting here in the park.

We're glad to be home.

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

 ARIZONA  -  DAY 26  -  10.16.23

Plans can change at the drop of a dime we found out today.  We had plans to catch up with another JRR friend here in Havasu and I was in the middle of plans for a visit to Yuma to see friends there when I got the call.

I won't go into family details here but it was enough to change our plans.  We'll be leaving here tomorrow and heading in the direction of home.  We will be in the desert for a few days before making our way up the mountain and back to Juniper Ridge.

I spent most of the day on the phone, making and taking calls and texts with family members.  Walt just relaxed and kept Abby entertained with walks.  

It was 99 degrees here today

Sunday, October 15, 2023


I think we were both kind of sorry to leave Nellis AFB because the FamCamp is just so darn nice.  And we like our neighbors.  And the weather is perfect!  And we love the Commissary!  Abby loves the dog park! I could go on....

So as we were getting ready to go this morning, our neighbors came over to say so long because they too are leaving and heading to Luke AFB.  We did finally ask their names so as they pulled out we called out, "Safe travels Ben!"  This is a couple I'd like to run into again.

So, all ready to go we pulled out and headed south.  We're headed to Lake Havasu.  I tried to get reservations at the state park to no avail.  Our JRR neighbor graciously offered her side yard to stay in at her house in Lake Havasu.  Full hookups to boot!  Thank you Rose!

We had been following the Eagles game on the way and since they were only in the 2nd quarters when we arrived in Lake Havasu City we quickly dropped the camper and found a sports bar to watch the rest of the game.  We hadn't seen one in three weeks and Walt had a great need to actually watch a game.  They were 5-0 and sadly they are now 5-1 as the Jets took the lead at the end of the game.  Oh well, we had to lose at least one game in the season.  Hopefully, this is the only one.  We're also keeping tabs on our Phillies and they are in the playoffs for the World Series.

Since we had gotten food in the bar during the game there was no need for dinner which made me happy!

Another evening of playing games, singing along with the radio and walking Abby.  It's all good.

Saturday, October 14, 2023

 NEVADA  -  DAY 24  -  10.14.23

Today was a total do nothing day.  We hung around the camper, sat outside and talked with our neighbors and new friends.  (Note to self:  Ask them their names)

We had thought about going to a show on the Strip but our neighbor told us about the parking fees they now charge so we squashed that idea.  We certainly weren't going to pay more for parking than we paid for two tickets to a show.  Other than that, neither one of us in interested in "Vegas".  We don't gamble other than lottery numbers.

We did go to the Commissary once again and picked up a few things that we knew were good prices.  We also scored 9 oz lobster tails for $18 apiece.  THAT we were very happy with.  Of course we picked up his Dunkin' Donuts coffee but neither one of us noticed that we picked up coffee BEANS.  Now we have to get a coffee grinder.  It's always something.

We did go back to Capriotti's to get our "free" subs.  These people need to go back for training.  They just don't know how to build a Capriotti's sub.  That said, we certainly appreciate that they tried to make it right.

I could spend the winter, or at least a couple of months here in the winter time.  We could introduce Wannadingers to Nevada!

We have noticed one thing this trip.  That the state of Florida must be empty this time of year.  EVERYWHERE we go we see Florida license plates.

We move on tomorrow.  It's time to close this chapter on the our trip.

Where to next?

No pictures were taken today!  We didn't see one single red rock or any color for that matter!

Friday, October 13, 2023

 NEVADA - DAY 23 - 10.13.23

After getting some of our household chores done we took off for today's adventure.

Since we had filled up with gas on base we really hadn't paid attention to gas prices as we've been out and about.  For some reason today we did and we didn't like what we saw.

We paid $4.50 on base and thought that was outrageous.  Walt even said to me, "I thought you said it would be cheaper on base."  Little did we realize.

So today we're going to the Red Rock Canyon, National Conservation Area.

On the way we took notice of these palm trees and mountains.  You can certainly tell where the trees follow the sun.

Oh look!  Another big rock!

Neither one of us had ever seen an Exit 0 before.

It was kind of a cloudy overcast day today so I wasn't sure how the pictures would turn out.  We missed the brilliant blue today, that's for sure.

It didn't take us long to get to our destination as it was only 16 miles from Nellis AFB.  

When we arrived we noticed the signs about timed entry tickets.  Oh no, not this again!  We decided to take our chances and try to get through the gate.  We were admitted with no problem and even got to use our America the Beautiful Card for the entry fee.  This card has saved us over $200.00 in national park entry fees.  It has more than paid for itself since we scored ours for $10.00.  They now sell for $80.00.

The contrast from one section to the next is astounding!

As you ride the 13 mile road through the park everything looks like a painting.

Can you see the people climbing on the rocks?

LOOK at the color here!  Incredible!

I took a picture of a couple and of course got ours taken in return.  I'm not used to being in all these pictures, I'm always behind the camera.

There were several warning signs about the park's animals.

We saw one that warned us that tortoises were in the area.  We didn't see any tortoises.

The next sign we saw warned us not to approach the wild horses.  We didn't see any wild horses.

The last sign warned us not to feed the wild burros.  We didn't see any wild burros to feed.

I did see a butterfly and Walt saw a crow!  That has to count for something doesn't it?

The two colors in the same rock formation just amazes me.

Some parting shots.

One would think we'd be tired of all this scenery stuff.  Nope, never!

Since the Red Rock Canyon Conservatory Area is only 13 miles long it didn't take us very long to go through it even with all the times we pulled over to get out and see the area better.  We had the better part of the day to entertain ourselves.  We're giving some thought to buying a new/newer (bigger) camper and don't have a clue as to what we want.  I had seen an advertisement for Lazy Days which has a HUGE dealership in Tampa, Florida and a good sized one in Tucson and another in Phoenix.  I figured we could go through some and just see what's available in a size we could tow.  What a disappointment that stop was.  It was very small and the units parked so close together that the slides couldn't be out so every rig looked cramped.  All the units were locked due to the surrounding neighborhood as we weren't in the best part of town.  So this was a total bust for us. 

We stopped by the Commissary to pick up a few things before going to pick up dinner.  Do I ever miss shopping there!  The prices are just so good compared to Safeway or Basha's which are our choices at home.

We love coming to Las Vegas for one particular reason.  Capriotti's!  It's a sub shop that originated in Delaware and consistently wins Best Sub Shop or Best Cheese Steak by popular vote.  There are 18 Capriotti's in Las Vegas!  Of course we went to the closest one to the base.  It was so aggravating trying to order our steak sandwiches because the young lady kept talking over us with suggestions for our sandwiches while we were trying to tell her what WE wanted on OUR sandwiches.  Needless to say, when we got back to the base and sat down to eat these long awaited sandwiches, we found out they weren't made with what we wanted anyway!  I called the store as soon as we made the discovery and the shift manager assured us that we would receive two new sandwiches to replace the incorrectly made ones.  We agreed to that and said we would be in before the week was out.  That works.

Thursday is laundry day on this trip.  It nearly killed me to do it the past two weeks because the campgrounds/laundromats we used were $2.50 to wash and $2.50 to dry.  Times that per four loads of laundry and this Queen of Cheap was not a happy camper.  Imagine my delight when I went to the FamCamps laundry and it was 75 cents for a 34 minute wash cycle and 75 cents for 45 minutes of drying time.  Of course, this laundry was spotless which was certainly appreciated.

We just love this base.  For one thing, even though we are in the desert and all the buildings are the same color as the background its fairly easy to get around.  At least it is for Walt.  I'm very thankful for his sense of direction.  He can drive somewhere once and be able to get around the next time he's there, such as on a base or a small to medium sized town.  Always being the passenger I don't pay attention to left turns or landmarks so I don't know if I would be good at remembering how to get around or not.

Evening brought a trip to the dog park with Abby, a walk for us, sitting outside listening to the evening sounds which, by the way, included fighter jets landing.  How many can say that?

I'm a happy camper.

Thursday, October 12, 2023

 NEVADA - DAY 22 - 10.12.23

After a great night's sleep we decided to take off on a day trip, well, at least a couple of hours.  So we packed up Abby and her water bowl and took off.

We made the hour drive to our destination and passed fields and fields of thousands of solar panels.  They seemed to go on forever.  I guess with all the neon and city lights they need it.

After a pleasant hour's drive we arrived at our destination.  Valley of Fire State Park.  We stayed in this park several years ago when it was first come first serve.  As of September 1st, all of Nevada's state parks went on a reservation system.  Unfortunately, we don't think they thought this all the way through.  Talking with a park employee we learned that reservations can be made but not cancelled.  So on September 1st people made reservations thinking they could make the dates they picked only to find out that life got in the way and they couldn't make it after all.  The staff in the visitor's center doesn't know when campers arrive or leave and because so many arrive after visitor center hours they just don't have a clue as to what sites are occupied and which aren't.  After 24 hours they could re-sell the sites,,,,if they only knew.  We're betting this system gets revamped in short order.

On with the pictorial tour of The Valley of Fire.  Fair warning....beautiful sights overload ahead.

Now you know with the name Valley of Fire that there had to be RED ROCKS!

Some are redder than others.

This section is called The Beehives.

Miss Abby nevers misses a chance to "smell" her visit to these parks.

The last time we were here we climbed up these stairs but we aren't doing that this time.  Let's just leave it as,,,,been there, done that.  That rock (?) boulder (?) is balanced there.  I guess for the safety of the visitors it has been reinforced at the bottom.

This is the only arch we saw. I'm sure there are probably others but this one was on the road we were traveling.

Yeah, we climbed all over this the last time.  Another been there, done that.

Remember, you were warned!

,,,,and more.

We stopped to see the Seven Sisters.  These formations were once part of the surrounding red rock.  These towers are what remain after the relentless forces of erosion stripped away the sandstone deposits that held it all together.  The many "blow holes" predict the eventual destruction of the towers that will take place hundreds of years into the future.

Those of you who know us well, know that Walt & I play "What Do You See in the Clouds" whenever the opportunity arises.  Seldom does one of us not be able to "see" what the other is describing.  Well, we do the same things with rocks.  Look at the rock formation below, what do YOU see?  Both Walt & I saw it at the same time and at the same time said,"Do you see the lions head?"  I have to say, this is probably too close a shot for some of you to see it.

I guess you had to be there.

I could have loaded DOZENS more shots but even I'm getting tired of looking at them.  Did I really just type that?

We got home, had a wonderful steak dinner that Walt cooked.  The steaks came from Snowflake Butcher and oh my gosh, how good they were!

An evening of dog walking, playing a few games, talking with our neighbors and then we called it a night!  

Life is good.  Life is very good.

Wednesday, October 11, 2023

 NEVADA  -  DAY 21  -  10.11.23

So here we are in Las Vegas, Nevada.  Not for the Strip or the gambling or to visit anyone.  We are staying at Nellis Air Force Base in their FamCamp.  I've stayed in a lot of FamCamps over the years and this is one of my favorites.  The sites are HUGE and shaded and well-kept and CHEAP!  We'll spend $27 a night here.  This Queen of Cheap is happy!

After we got set up in our site we took a short ride to get the lay of the land once again.  It's been a couple of years since we've stayed here.  The Commisary and BX were found once again so we'll be using those for sure.

One thing we forgot was that this base is home to the Thunderbirds!  When we first heard the first jet coming in for the evening poor Abby didn't know what the sound was and didn't know what to do.  To be honest, I also said, "What's that?"  Then it registered.  Oh well, after two days we won't even hear them anymore.  We hope to be able to get out to the flight line to watch them land or perhaps take off,,,,if they take off in the midafternoon that is.

When we took a ride outside the base and returned, we followed this car in.

We both noticed it at the same time.  We decided to follow him.

We finally got to talk with the fellow when he parked in the base hospital parking lot.  When he got out of his car I told him that we too were from Delaware.  He chuckled and said that he wasn't from Delaware but was stationed at Dover Air Force Base and had just transferred here and he hadn't had a chance to get his tags changed over yet.  He went on to say how much he enjoyed Delaware and that we have great beaches.  Of course, we knew that already.  He did say he was going to enjoy playing golf year round here.

Vegas is very busy this week as this coming weekend there is a NASCAR race  and the PGA has an event going on.

We sat out this evening enjoying our neighbors and the beautiful weather.