Monday, February 24, 2014

Why Would Anyone Fly to Pennsylvania in the Winter?

I must be nuts! So why am I doing this crazy thing?

To help celebrate my father's birthday! Be sure to read his shirt.

My one-and-only cousin, Linda, and her daughter, Rebecca, put on a great party, along with their husbands, Terry and Terry.

The next day we drove down to Virginia to visit my son, Mark, and daughter-in-law, Carisa. My son whipped up a stir fry for lunch. How he got to be such a good cook is totally beyond me.

I also got to visit with my grandcat. Paka (Swahili for "cat") is a Savannah, a cross between a serval, an African wild cat, and a domestic cat. He's about 16% serval. Don't worry, he's not being abused. He loves this kind of acrobatics, and totally trusts his daddy.

The official family birthday portrait. Sorry Carisa's not in it but we needed a photographer and she volunteered.

My father still lives alone in his house and takes care of himself. Here he's changing the battery in one of his 3 vehicles, his Lincoln Town Car.

He also owns a Triumph Spitfire, and on Sunday the Triumph Club had their Winter Picnic nearby. I'm sure glad the picnic was indoors. (Notice I made him wear his birthday sweatshirt all 3 days.)

Anybody want a little sticky bun? Just one of the many desserts.

The food was wonderful. And they had free wine! And did I mention the sticky buns???

Turns out my father was the only one who drove his Triumph to the picnic. What's wrong with everyone else? Just because they all have convertibles?

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Trains, Planes, and Automobiles

After Quartzsite, Phil and I headed back to Yuma so he could continue with his dental work across the border in Mexico. The BLM land behind the VFW has got to be the worst camping spot ever, right next to the highway and a busy railroad line, but it's fairly convenient.

Fortunately, we got our favorite spot back in the corner, which helped a little.

The good news - due to the warm temperatures and some rain they had back in the beginning of winter, flowers are popping out all over. Some orange thingies -

And some purple ones. (Don't I sound like an expert?)

The fields of Yuma produce over a BILLION dollars in crops each year. Watching the harvest is fascinating. First, the guys on top assemble boxes and line them with plastic. Then the guys underneath catch the picks from the pickers, pack (in this case) 24 heads of Romaine lettuce in each box, spritz them with a little water, close the box, (all in a matter of seconds), and send the box on a conveyer belt to -

This strong "ham" who stacks the boxes on the trailer behind the tractor. Meanwhile the tractor is VERY slowly moving forward with the trailer and assembly platform all by itself.

If you'd like to see how fast this all happens, here's a short video.

Well, we've covered trains and automobiles, but what about planes? Almost every night, crop dusters take off from the runway just on the other side of the canal from us.

It goes on until 1 am, sometimes back and forth on the fields near us.

I don't know about you, but this is all I can think about...

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Seniors Gone Wild!

Every year the WINs go to "Somewhere" in Bouse for dinner and dancing. Yes - that is the name of a bar.

They open the bar just for us and bring in a band.

Our friend Millie joins the band for a few songs.

Phil was still down in Yuma getting his teeth done, and Cheryl and I didn't feel like we were getting enough dances, so -

She fixed the problem with this sign. It worked!

The Quartzsite gathering wouldn't be complete without a trip to the Desert Bar. There are 2 ways to get there - both on dirt roads - but we took the 4-wheel drive way.

We stopped to see "The Titanic," named by our late friend, Don.

And finally arrived at the back door of the Desert Bar. Parking is crazy!

We grabbed the seats around the dance floor.

They serve burgers and hot dogs, but absolutely no cheese! I don't get it.

And there is no drinking allowed in the parking lot, or else!

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Quartzsite - Part I

The WINs park 2 miles out on Plomosa Rd, north of Quartzsite. I like to park down the hill, in "the ditch" to get away from all the generators.

This is my view of the people "up the hill." Quartzsite doesn't lack beautiful sunsets.

This year there was new entertainment - a hot air balloon.

The WINs are parked across the street from the Solos, and less than a mile from the LoWs, two other singles groups. One afternoon we had an ice cream social for all singles. Lots of fun to talk to everyone in the other groups, many of whom I knew from other gatherings.

But of course, the main reason to come to Quartzsite is to shop. The weather was the best I can ever remember.

Even a little hot for some shoppers.

The big tent is filled with anything an RVer could possibly want.

Solar-charged lanterns were new this year.

Along with fishing poles to roast your marshmallows and hot dogs.

Hmmmmm..... Not for sale, but I might have to try this....

Quartzsite is when the WINs do their planning for the summer circuits. I'm looking forward to doing the Pacific Northwest this year.

More on Quartzsite to come!