Saturday, March 27, 2010

Some Vacation Days can be Sad

Advising that blog will not be updated for the next few days as we have received word of passing of our sister-in-law Enid in Edmonton. We are catching a WestJet plane from Las Vegas to Calgary on the 27th at 7:00PM to Calgary. Son, Ross will pick us up and take us home to High River. Sunday we will drive to Edmonton for the Memorial on Monday at 11:00AM. Then return to High River. Back to the airport Wednesday March 31st for a departure flight to Las Vegas at 8:00AM, arriving Vegas at 10:00AM. We originally were not going to return until the 3rd of April, but as we have no food in our High River home decided to return to ELTORO, our "Home on Wheels" sooner. WestJet was very accomadating, and no increase in cost was assessed with the flight changes. The last couple of days have been quiet for us, although most people would think of being in Vegas as a high activity time. I guess we are just vegetating and quietly mourning the loss of a beautiful lady. We will miss her immensely.
Here is her obituary Published in the Edmonton Journal:

LANG, Enid May (Brower) On March 24, 2010 at the age of 78 years, Enid passed away after a courageous battle with cancer, her family by her side. She will be fondly remembered and sadly missed by her loving husband of 47 years, Larry; her two daughters, Brenda Newby and Linda (Al) Lesnick; grandchildren Evan and Tegan Newby and Ashley Lesnick (Ryan Gillespie) and great-grandson Seth Gillespie. Also mourning her loss are her sisters, Jessie Lou (Gordon) Campbell, Marnie Simpson and her brother, Bill (Agnes) Brower as well as sister-in-law, Eileen Brower, brothers-in-law, Leroy (Gaylene) Lang, Dennis (Denice) Lang and numerous nieces, nephews and friends. Enid was predeceased by her brother, Ross Brower, brother-in-law, Ken Simpson and son-in-law, Russell Newby. A Memorial Service will be held on Monday, March 29, 2010 at 11:00 a.m. at Hainstock's Funeral Home, 9810-34 Avenue, Edmonton, AB T6E 6L1. The family wishes to thank all who assisted in Enid's care including the Cross Cancer Institute, Home Care and the staff of Unit 43 at the Grey Nuns Hospital for the great kindness and compassion that was shown during her illness. If friends so desire, memorial donations may be made to the Cross Cancer Institute, 11560 University Avenue, Edmonton, AB T6J-1Z2 or to the Grey Nuns Hospital, Unit 43 Palliative Care, Room 3C60 11111 Jasper Avenue, Edmonton, AB T5K-0L4. Hainstock's Funeral Home & Crematorium, 780-440-2999. Honoured Provider of Dignity Memorial

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

What happens in Vegas --- Oh you already know that one!!

March 23rd
We decide to see some of the sights around to rural Las Vegas area, so today went out to Hoover Dam. For the last 2 or 3 years we have been following the construction of the bridge downstream from the dam. Originally it was supposed to be completed by 2008 for $235 million dollars, but now it is schedued for fall of this year. Do you think it may be a little over budget?? However it is coming along nicely with only 3 sections of deck of complete. Lots of info is available on the web with a google search of "Hoover Dam Bridge Construction."

After taking our updated pictures we returned back to Highway 95 and traveled back south for 40 miles to Searchlight, then onto the Joshua Highway across to Primm on I 15. The Joshua Highway is aptly named as thousands of Joshua trees grow on either side of the route for about 30 miles. Last year we were in Joshua Tree National Park near 29 Palms, California. Lots of the species grow there as well, but when we were there in February they were not in bloom yet. Today blooms were on almost all the trees. We were able to get some great shots of them.

After Primm returned to Vegas, but instead of returning home, went north toward Pahrump, and then into Red Rock Canyon State Park. We were in search of a waterfall that was advertised in the Sams Town RV Park, as a sight a person should see. To us the picture shown was almost a duplicate of the Cameron Falls at Waterton Lakes National Park near home. But once there and questioning the Park info girl, she told me that there is a couple of waterfalls, but they are small and dry up most of the time, but have a small flow at present. The drive through the Park is a 13 mile "Loop" road. Although we never found a big waterfalls, we did find some interesting Flora and Fauna. The Rock here is as red as it is in Our own Red Rock Canyon in Waterton, and lots of rock climbers enjoy the challenges of spending time scaling the near vertical cliffs.

In one of these areas we were lucky enough to spot some Desert Bighornes high up in the boulders, and our telephoto lenses on our cameras were able to capture some of them.

Even found the Oscat Meyers Weinermobile. Licence plates "RELSHME"

Daylight was starting to wane, so it was now time to return to the bright lights of Vegas, and to savour the sights of the day.
March 22nd
Vacation time is great, but life goes on back home. Babies are born, and love ones pass on. Denice and I have a wonderful sister-in-law, Enid, living in Edmonton, wife of my brother Larry. She has been bravely fighting that dreaded cancer for at least a year now, and has been confined to the hospital for the last two months. Larry bravely cared for her every need at home as long as he was able, but finally relented to have her taken to the hospital, where better care could be administered. He faithfully has remained at her side 24/7 for these last two months. He called today to tell us that the end of the long road is approaching soon. We have always been close to Enid, and would like to be with her now, but at this stage we believe we serve both her, and ourselves better by staying away. We are in Vegas, and are able to drive home in 3 or 4 days or can catch a plane and be home in hours if need be. We will just keep in close communication and do what is required when the time comes.
This evening we caught the shuttle down town to the Freemont Street Light show. For those who have never been there, It is a two block section of Freemont Street, that has a dome covering over the street section and huge laser shows are projected onto the domed roof. We arrived about 5:00PM and had supper at a casino, then were on the street for the hourly show at 7:00PM. It is just fantastic.

All the casinos in that section: the Golden Nugget, The Four Queens, Binions, and the Freemont Casino, to name a few, all shut off their outside lights during the extravaganza performance. The sound and light show is phenominal. Just a couple of pictures to give you some idea. Thousands of people crowd the street to watch and listen. Between shows we just wandered along and took in the local sights. AND SOME SIGHTS THERE WERE!! And now "What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas!"

March 21st
Time to move again. Damn, I could stay a month here, as we really enjoyed it. Maybe next year we will. Most of the folks here are long term people, We hear comments about this one being here 18 years, that one 16 years, the new comer of 10 years, and on and on. Don't think we want to do that but staying for the month of March would be nice. Reservations would have to be made as this resort is full with the winter crowd, October to March, and then the summer ones who are water lovers, from April to October. I think we should be able to squeeze in, in march as some leave early to head for their Summer homes.
Anyway, we pack up and move on, back to Parker, then west on 62 to 95 north. Follow it all the way to Vegas, and then onto the Boulder highway until we reach Sam's Town RV Park. Check in for 3 days. That should give us a little time to see some of the sights here.

Mar 19th and 20th
Nothing important to report. Just sat back and relaxed at Black Meadows Landing. Enjoyed the weather and scenery.

Life and retirement is a "Bowl of Cherries." And speaking of cherries, Denice is drinking lots of cherry juice for her gouty toe as recommended by those on site experts of our age who many have experienced the pain. She continues to improve daily, but still favors it. Occasionally when I accidentally bump it while walking by, she still howls and pain and threatens to do me in, but I'm still here to complete this blog anyway.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Black Meadow Landing on the Lake

March 18th
Sight seeing Day today! We all take our own vehicles and head off to Havasu Landing. This is a small community only a few miles north along the lake from where we are camped, but the road has to make a big circle around and basically follows dry washes to the residences. A nice little community with about 50 modular type homes, and a nice marina, for everyone has a boat, as I imagine most go across to Havasu City by water most of the time for supplies. Probably takes 15 minutes by boat but a couple hours by ground. The road is just a one lane dirt path down washes and over ridges.

On one of the washes we followed upward toward the source and found a huge deep narrow canyon.

We were able to drive through and it gave us csome great photo opportunities. Just beyond the canyon the road deteriorate and finally got too rough for our vehicles. Tom, Doug and I walked another 1/2 mile and found a real neet cave. It was on the canyon floor and was about 25 feet high and the same wide, and extended nearly 50 ft into the mountain. Would be a great place to camp out away from the weather.

March 17th - St. Patty's Day
Just another quite enjoyable Day
In the afternoon Denice and I drove down toward the Parker Dam to take some photos. Great scenery here of the high mountain desert type.

This is the pipeline from the lake to higher elevations where the water then flows to Los Angeles, Phoenix and Tucson.

We also have a fair amount of birds and animals around us. Quail, Roadrunners, and Jack Asses. Last night at midnight the wind came up and I had to go out and put up the awning. It was pitch black, but right behind ELTORO the burros were laying down and one scared the bejesus out of me when he started braying only feet away!!

March 16th
Denices Big Toe feels much better today, So much that we go and do Laundry. We are away behind. When completed Tom and Linda, and Doug and Germaine, are at ELTORO for coffee. We are just really enjoying it here. The weather is finally what we would expect for down here. 70's and 80's during the day, 40's at night. Pretty well just rested today and enjoyed the scenery and weather.

March 15th
After talking to several people who have had Gout and last nght I searched the Web for cures, we found that there are some natural home remedies thaat have worked for lots of people. The four most common seem to be Cherry Juice, Baking Soda, Apple Cider Vinegar, Celery seed, and Ibuprofin. Armed with this info we decided to make a trip into Havasu City, to see if we could come up with this grocery list of items. To get to Havasu we crossed the Havasu Dam and turned north on Highway 95. It is only about 10 miles to go to Havasu City rather than Parker and everyone advised Havasu would be a better option. Once in Havasu we stopped at a Walgreens Drug store. II explained Denices situation and requested info or if they had the items I needed. The pharmicist was of little help and said that the items I was wanting was of little benefit. I explained we wished to do it outside of the US prescriptions option as we were Canadians. He said that he could not (or would not) help and we should go through a doctor. I left the store in a little bit of a huff, and went across the street to a Safeway, and found all the items that we had on the list. Returned to home at Black Meadow Landing and immediately started treatment with lots of water and cherry juice. Haven't tried the Baking soda or apple cider vinegar yet. Tomorrow?? I want to make her a cocktail of 1 oz apple cider vinegar, 1 tsp of baking soda, 6 oz cherry juice, and a sprinkling of celery seed, but she will have nothing of it.
I also bought Cherry Cheesecake (2) and stopped at Tom and Linda's once home and had cake and coffee with them, and Doug and Germaine.

Mar 14th
Wrap up and move north to Parker following Tom and Linda, stop at the WalMart and buy some groceries, and the continue across the bridge over the Colorado River, and on onto California. Then turn right along the river and drive for 25 miles over some difficult mountain road to Black Meadow Landing.
Our latest segment of the trip as of March 14th, 2010
(Double click on any picture for more detail)

Check in. Tom takes a site across from Doug and Germaine, friends of Tom and Lindas, and the people who had bought our little Suzuki Sidekick a year ago. I, elect for a more expensive site right on the beach of the Lake. Toms site is $150 for a week, mine $175. A lesson learned here. You should always check the site , especially if you plan on staying long term. This site when we drove up to it, although on the lake was sooooo small that once in place after forward and back a few times, we found that when we put the slides out we were within inches of our neighbor. On the door side we only had about eight feet to that neighbor. We are disappointed. Well that's an understatement. We were pissed off!!!

I went back to the office and complained and requested a move. At this park there is the waterfront, the area with no waterfront, and then an area up on a high bench with sites backing onto a 5 hole golf course. I had scouted out the whole area with the jeep and when at the office requested a move to the upper bench, site 39. The lady at the desk agreed with me that A40 on the lake was not a good site as it is so small and had no problem with me moving up the hill. It was a cheaper site, but I said I needed no refund as I was just happy to move up there.

By the way, they did return $29 for my cheaper, but better site.

We were back home by about 2:00PM and at the little restaraunt in the park had soft tacos for $1.50 each. Can't beat that!!

Saturday, March 13, 2010

And now a little "Boondocking"

Mar 13th
Just sit and enjoy the desert today again. A slight breeze, but warm sun. Tom buys a solar panel and controller from Solar Bills for his motorhome. He will install it himself, once he is home. Tom cooks pork chops for supper, but we eat at our motorhome as Denice still cannot negotiate walking even between the two motorhomes. After Dinner a neighboring motorhome owner offers to sell me his satelite dish for $1000. He does not use it. Its 3 years old and cost $2000 when new. We take my receiver over to his place to try it, and it does find the satelite but the receiver has not been used for the time that we have been down here, so it is needing updates. We leave it overnight to see if it will automatically update.

Our latest segment of the trip as of March 12th, 2010
(Double click on any picture for more detail)

Mar 12th
Wax man on site at 8:45AM and completes job by 10:30AM. He did an excellent job. ELTORO looks pretty shiny!!

I pay the requested $180 and give him a $20 tip for a job well done. The Neals and us are on the road to Quartzsite by 11:00AM. Arrive Quartzsite at about 12:30 PM and park in "Boondocking" area at Mile 112. Just sit back and visit with Tom and Linda for the rest of the day. Denice and Gout still partners and she is in big pain. Unable to do any activity that she needs to stand.