Thursday, April 30, 2009

Pictures at 11

Somebody wanted pictures, so here they are.
Ronnie, a park model is a semi-permanent mobile home. You can see one behind my motorcycle trailer. They get towed in, then they are blocked up level, anchored to the ground, the wheels are removed and they are connected to the water, electrical and sewer services. You buy the trailer, but rent the space in the park of your choice. Moving them is expensive, so park owners want more park models. A park model provides year round rental fees and the owners aren't as likely to move when the park owner raises the rent.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Long, hot day

With the aide of my ever present assistant and friend, Dave, I made the move to the space in the park that I will be calling home next winter - Space 145.
I had to move because the RV park owner decided to buy a used park model and put it on my old space.
My new arrangement has many positives. My coach sits north-south vice east-west so the full side of the coach will no longer be exposed to full sun for the entire day. I have no neighbors behind me - just a big open field full of quail, rabbits and doves (and other creatures that don't make their presence known). I have park models on both sides of me. That may not sound like a good thing, but when the wind howls it will provide extra protection. The space is extra deep, so I have an extremely large entertaining area behind the coach. BYOB.
Most of the work was done by 2 p.m. so we hit the pool for an hour or so.
As Ronnie says, "Life is good".

Happy Birthday Mary!!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

New lights

Hey, not much to report. Hottest weather I've seen since I got here last October. The temperature was over 100 yesterday. Dave and I spent most of the last two days in the pool. We bought some floatie toys to take the work out of laying in the pool. This retirement life just keeps getting tougher all the time.

I bought new turn signal lights for the rear of the bike. The old ones barely cleared the saddlebags and I worried about scratching the new paint job. I think they look pretty good.

Not to be outdone, Dave bought a new seat for his bike. Being vertically challenged, he could barely put his feet flat on the ground at a stop light and his arms were always stretched straight out to grab the handle bars. He is much more comfortable on the bike now. An added bonus is that the passenger seat is much more comfortable. Maybe Paige will ride with him more often now.

We tested the trailer wiring this morning - everything seems to work. Hooray!

I'll be moving to my new space next week (#145). The folks that are in the space now, had planned to be home by now, but his cataract surgeries got delayed a few weeks. Now that he can see, they plan to pull out on Tuesday. The park is anxious for me to move as they are planting a park model (single wide trailer, semi-permanently attached) on my current site (#94). My new space has an open field behind it (on the other side of a chain link fence) with lots of rabbits and quail and doves and squirrels, etc. My coach will be sitting north-south instead of east-west. I will no longer have the afternoon sun beating down on the entire driver's side of the coach.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Wash day

No, not laundry day - wash day.
I started out washing the roof of the coach, then continued down the sides and the awning. Then I washed the bike and finished the afternoon by washing myself.
Good clean fun.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Short ride

We can check another one off Dave's "must ride" list. We took a short (115 mile) ride up Hiway 60 though the Salt River Canyon (Canyon Rio Salado), then turned around and rode 115 miles back with a short stop in Globe for a Swiss mushroom burger and a chocolate shake.

There are a series of switchbacks down to the river crossing in the canyon bottom and more switchbacks as you climb out of the canyon on the north side. The speed limit is a factor as the posted limit is 35 mph and most people have no patience.

There were the normal delays on 60 just east of Globe. They are widening the road, blasting and jack hammering the rock away a bit at a time, scooping it up, hauling it down the road to a crusher, making gravel, then taking it back to make the new road bed. Again - is anybody listening? - patience is a virtue.

I'm sure that Steve, Rob and Pat are getting in similar rides to ensure they are prepared for the SpudRun in July. What's that? Oh - it's raining in Washington. Never mind.
Dave has a nice compiled photo and a map on his blog:

Thursday, April 9, 2009

A trip to the store

Ah, you poor suckers in Washington state paying all of that state liquor tax at the state run liquor control board stores.

Here in the Valley of the Sun, we have the supermarket of liquor stores - BevMo!

Knob Creek in Washington is close to $40. Here the same bottle is $24 (with Paige's ClubBev! card). The Baileys is $15, the Boodles gin just $18 and the Sauza Conmemorativo $22.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Mount Lemmon - 282 miles

The weather dictated that we move our normal ride from Wednesday to Tuesday to take advantage of the calm skies and high heat (90+). High winds and cooler temps are called for tomorrow.

One of the rides we've been putting off until it warmed up is the ride to Mount Lemmon, located just northeast of Tucson and home to the Mt. Lemmon Ski Area. At 9,157 feet it isn't a terribly tall mountain to those of us used to the Cascades, Olympics and Rockies, but there was still patches of snow on the ground.

The worst part of the ride is the 105 miles of straight, flat, two-lane, 65 mph hiway between Apache Junction and Tucson. At least it isn't I-10.

The road up Mount Lemon is maintained by the U.S. Forrest Service and as such, the posted speed limit is 35 mph and there is no passing all the way up. There are, however, plenty of pull-outs and look-outs and rest areas. The speed limit frustrates a lot of people (even me - I like curves), but if they'd just take a deep breath and enjoy the view instead of hurrying to the top so they can turn around and hurry down, the trip would be better for everyone.

There were only three of us today - Dave, Jerry and myself - and next week it will be just Dave and I. Three more of my neighbors pulled out this morning.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Empty spaces

The first of April. The migration to northern climes has begun. I don't get it. North Dakota is flooded. Minnesota is still covered in snow. Don't get me started on Canada, eh? Even western Washington got a dusting of snow today. I'll be here until summer actually arrives in the northwest - or on my way, following the sun north.

I keep myself (and Dave) busy fixing little things on the RV. The worst item was the sewer pipe that had come disconnected from the holding tank. It's a good friend that will help you fix something like that, and Dave was right in there with me. The longest lasting problem will be the odor of cigarette smoke that permeates the coach. I've borrowed a carpet cleaner from another park resident and cleaned the carpet twice. The big bottle of Fabreze will run out sometime. I am open to suggestions - anything short of ripping out the upholstery and carpet.

We did take a break for a ride today. Our usual Wednesday ride to lunch, just over 180 miles. It was a blustery day and the wind made the ride just a bit less enjoyable than normal. We were a group of only three today. There have been as many as eleven on our Wednesday rides.

Time for a soak in the hot tub. They will turn off the heat in May, so we had better enjoy it while we can.