Friday, March 27, 2015

Whirlwind....

Tonight I am in the All Season's RV park West of Wichita, Kansas...  Yup Toto, I'm back in Kansas..

Now how the heck did that happen....?   Well, Monday morning I went over to the storage lot in Apache Junction and retrieved the motor home bringing the Jeep back home as well...  And that started a whirlwind of activity....

I had been bagging and sacking stuff to go into the coach for the last couple of weeks and placing it in the long hallway going to our front door...  So a lot of the stuff was sitting there ready to go out...  That took most of the rest of Monday....

On Tuesday I Met Greg and Jan White at the Tilted Kilt restaurant over in Tempe for a late lunch...  He reported on our meal and took some pictures here....

Then a couple of hours later after rushing back to the house to let Biscuit out in the back yard for her business, it was back over to the park where Shadowmoss and Croft from Croft's Mexico live.

Croft and Norma will move on at the end of the month, but poor Shadowmoss has one of those awful things called a job, so she has to stay a while longer...   Anyway we had planned another trip out on the town before I left....   This time to the Organ Stop Pizza Theater....  Croft reports on that outing with pictures  here.....

Again we had the most enjoyable evening, also bringing along one of the other park residents that doesn't get out too much if we don't bring her along....   Phyllis is somewhat senior to our age, so I hope we add some quality to her winter as well....

The next morning I was up with the sun, and began to load all the last minute stuff.... Groceries and toiletries...  And the last minute clothes that came from the dryer..    So by about 11 AM I was rolling...

The first part of the trip up the mountain to Payson is the same old  usual road that we ride on the motorcycles, but it seems so different in a 26,000  pound motorhome pulling the Jeep...   Not nearly as fast and the motorhome wants to run away from you on the down hills...

The motorhome exhaust brake puts on the Jeep brake box inertia brakes going down hill....  This isn't good as it tends to stop the motorhome with the jeeps brakes...  Those aren't capable of stopping such a big vehicle...  In the mountains there wasn't anywhere in one construction zone to pull over and stop this from happening...    So I went about 10 miles an hour until I could remedy the problem...  Traffic was indignant, honking their horns...

When a break in the Jersey wall came about, I quickly pulled to the side and turned the whole mess off...  So much for Blue Ox's brake system...  It was mostly going up hill anyway so the system didn't get turned back on until I made it to Heber over the rim...

I really enjoy the trip up and over the mountain rim...  The trees and woods are so Colorado like and the cooler temps are usually welcome after the Phoenix valley oven...  But on Wednesday, that was the end of the summer temperatures in Arizona....  It was in the 50s up there and never recovered..

As the afternoon waned, I rolled across the New Mexico state line and promptly lost an hour for daylight saving....

Staying that night in the USA RV Campground in Gallup, I was treated to a night time temperature of 21 degrees...   I had a coat in the back closet, along with all the clothes that were loaded out of the house on Monday.........  But, where...

Thursday was all day of interstate  40... from Gallup, to Tucumcari..   I stopped once in a rest stop, just to let Biscuit out and make a sandwich...   Then again at Tucumcari to take on fuel...

I was pleased to calculate 10 miles to the gallon on that 300 mile stretch...  No air conditioner and no generator to run the roof airs or fridge makes at least a mile to the gallon difference for me..  But the fridge does use propane, as I most always run it while travelling...  And yes I know that some folks don't advise that...

Last night I stayed at the Corral RV park in Dalhart, Texas.....   This is a fun stop as I had FHU 50 amp with cable tv for $24....  Of course its close together, parking lot style camping...  But what the heck, I only stayed there for a few hours...

Today I traveled US 54..   Dalhart to Wichita...  It was sunny and bright out in the West end of Kansas, but the wind was out of the East on my nose...  Lunch was again at a rest area in Bloom, Ks..

This is a wide spot in the road where the old highway in on one side and the new road is to the South..   Several trucks were stopped along the old road, so I merged right in along side...

Fired up the generator and had toasted bagels with ham and cheese...  Wal Mart Deli macaroni salad and some mexican chips rounded out a better lunch than a fast food...  Biscuit also enjoyed walking the grounds of the little park, smelling all of the other messages from other travelling doggies...

But by the time we were closer to Wichita, an overcast had taken over the sky and it was noticeably colder...  It is to again be down in the upper 30s, so the blue flame heater will be running thru the night to supplement the electric space guy...  I seldom run the forced air heat...  Even the other night when it was in the 20s....  Not too sure I would want to be boondocking at 21 though..

Bedsides, here in this vintage (used to be a KOA) campground in Wichita, we have Cox Cablevision for a couple of bucks more... So as I type away, the Ncaa Basketball tournament is playing on the TVs...

I'll be home tomorrow afternoon, and the adventure is over for a while... Just work trekking back and forth from the Moho to the house.....

Retired Rod

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Joe's

I must report that I was again invited to attend a blogger evening dinner out....    Again it was Shadowmoss that was lining these outings up from her  mobile home park...

Another blogger couple, Croft Randle and his wife Norma, from Crofts's Mexico came to Mesa and rented a spot from the park that Shadowmoss lives in..    And of course we will make most any excuse to go out on the town, so they were invited...  Croft is a friend with Rick Doyle up in BC, Canada, so we have been reading each others bolgs off and on over the years..

Croft had requested that we go where he could get some none meat options, so that immediately brought up Joe's Farm Grill as an option...     They grow their own produce on the farm and make a black bean burger as well as a Portobello Mushroom Cap burger that are as unique as anywhere I have ever been...

The catch was that most of the seating was outside, and it was raining quite consistently for here in Mesa.   What would be the odds...?  But we managed to snag a table outside under the ample overhang...   There are large trees in the farm yard which contained most of the water as well, but we were quite dry along the windows...

Croft does a nice job explaining the evening and had the waitress take our picture  for his blog, so move along over to his site HERE....

The rain was forecasted for the rest of the night and the next day, which was Thursday and the motorcycle luncheon....   They were optimistically planning a round trip to Flagstaff...   Which was cancelled late that Wednesday evening.....

So I watched it rain from the back deck on Thursday....  LOL

Retired Rod



Friday, March 13, 2015

Yarnell along with other places...

We have been going on do over rides for the Thursday morning or luncheon rides....  So rather than report a ride to the same old place, I have passed on making a post...

But a week ago we did go back up to Rock Springs on interstate 17 headed North from Phoenix...  The ride wasn't overly exciting as we went around the 101 and then headed North on I 17....  And like usual, I order a plain hamburger with cottage cheese instead of french fries...  So that wasn't all that exciting either....

But we had fellowship with about 20 folks in a private room that is mostly the bar...   And we had to keep our tickets separate from the pies and rolls that folks were buying...  So perhaps there are more than one vendor within the various rooms inside of that place....  But if needing a cup of coffee or a really good piece of pie, that is the place to stop North of Phoenix...

On Friday night the 6th, Mesa had what they call Bike Night....  I had never been to this endeavor before, so I rode the trike down to the old part of town here in Mesa....   That's about 100 blocks back to the center of the town and 40 blocks to the North from here...  It took about an hour to get there, as I didn't ride the Superstition Highway...   I ride it when I have to, but that was just an evening ride for relaxation...

They block off two or more blocks of Main street with traffic cones and only let motorcycles onto that part of the street....  The bikes park along the curb with their back wheel parked at an angle to the sidewalk...  There were thousands of them.....  With all their riders walking along looking at all the other bikes...  Everyone talking and music stages and beer tents and impromptu sales shops under awnings... Along with the restaurants and bars that are normally open along that part of the street...

Our Goldwing club had a membership table along in with some permanent park benches..    And a lot of the club members had gotten there early enough for parking in the street along the front...  My trike was too wide to get into the parking barricades, so I parked in the next block and walked to the activity...  I was still among hundreds motorcycles and  cars were several block away...
This was mostly a Harley Davidson event, but I did see several Can Ams sprinkled along the parking..    So they must have gotten beyond the barricades...  It was well after the late news when I got home that night...

And then yesterday the club declared that the lunch was to be in Bagdad...  As in a small town North and West of Congress, Arizona....  But we never made it there...  It was to be 170 miles each way, so I decided that I would have to take Biscuit with me as I would be gone too long...  I fell in behind the motorcycles with the Jeep to tag along...  We knew it would take a long time, so we met at 9 AM...

Things were going along famously as we were on Az 74 South of Lake Pleasanton when there was highway resurfacing....  We came to a complete stop....  As we sat there waiting, one of the guys said his tire felt squishy on the CB radio...  And it was squishy...  So all the motorcycles and my Jeep pulled out on the side of the road to see what we could do for him...

And we did blow it back up with a portable pump and my cigarette lighter socket...  But we didn't get on more than a couple of miles more and he was flat again.........  So we messed around deciding it was hopeless and then called the roadside assistance that is part of the GWRRA, our club...

This meant that we had a dozen motorcycles hanging around because no one wanted to be the one that left this poor fellow...  So I did what a good club member would do for a fellow member and told the group to go on on their ride, and I would wait it out for the truck...

We told every story we knew for the next couple of hours....  But the flat bed truck finally arrived...

Once he was loaded and away toward the city, I gave chase to the group who I surmised might be in Yarnell, Az at the top of the big hill......  And they were...


Yarnell, is where the flash fire burned 19 firefighters a year ago killing them in the process...  Today the town seems to be rebounding from the fire, but then I don't recognize the remains of places that haven't been rebuilt....

After the lunch, (I grabbed a quick McDonalds in Wickenburg on the way thru), we rode and I followed on Highway 89 into Prescott...  This is about 35 miles of twisty hilly, curvy road that is perfect for motorcycles....  It is placarded against trucks over 40 feet long...  You climb steadily up to 6000 feet and the forest becomes fur trees rather than desert...  Prescott is kind of touristy, if you haven't been there, reminding you of a town out of the old wild west...

Once in Prescott, we went thru the downtown area and then back out to the I 17  about 20 miles on an Easterly feeder road..   Then we paid for our trip by having to drive back thru the center of Phoenix at 4:30 PM....  I didn't get home until after 6 PM...  Big cities are such a pain, in rush hour traffic...

I was glad that I had taken the Jeep, and Biscuit was safely with me....  She had been outside to do her business several times during the day and drove poor Art crazy while he waited inside the Jeep for his truck....  But he said he liked dogs...  or at least the air conditioning that was running while he waited  LOL

Retired Rod

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

An Annual luncheon....

We had a nice friendly lunch on Monday in the middle of a driving rain soaking the desert....  I can't describe the lunch any better than Ray did in his blog...

Ray's Blog

Or than Sandie did is her account of the lunch....

Sandie's Blog

We went to the Old Chicago place on Power Road....  And we got a newer waiter who left us sitting for about 15 minutes completely forgetting to take our order....  Ray and Jim had ordered meat lover's Calazones .....

But they received spinach Calazones.....   Uh, neither guy liked cooked spinach...  So we sent them back....  I ordered a simple hamburger...  That turned out much safer....

We had to look around to try and find someone to take our picture and almost gave up as our waiter had completely disappeared.  So Sandie and Jim's friend Paul Volunteered to take the shot..  Of course leaving him out of the shot...  I'm not certain that he has ever blogged, so he reasoned that it didn't matter that he wasn't in the picture....    Well how are we going to get everyone to know him if he isn't pictured?

After the meal, Ray and I went over and toured the Large Cal Am park that we used to stay in before we built the house...  Valle Del Oro...    I wanted him to see the quilting room and club that is part of the park....  The room monitor took over and gave him quite the sales pitch....  She was from Calgary and had a pronounced   Aboat accent... LOL  Eh...   It was fun....

So we turned the rainy Monday into a warm and friendly day...   Go see both of the other bloggers posts if you haven't done it yet...

Retired Rod