Life Since Mittry Lake

Paradise Casino

After I left Mittry Lake I headed to the Paradise Casino.  From there I drove into Los Algadones, MX to have my teeth cleaned by my dentist Dr Eva Urena.  All went well and I didn’t have to have any other work done. I got out of there paying only $35.  Not too shabby!

While I was over in MX I decided to have my hearing checked out.  I found the place my friends from a couple of years ago got their hearing aids.  They had lots of good things to say about them so went in without an appointment and they said to return for a hearing test in about an hour.  I love the fact that you can go in any office without an appointment and they will get you in so fast.

My hearing test results were exactly what I have thought for some time.  My hearing is going down the drain.  She recommended several types of hearing aids including one that only costs $695.  However she mentioned that I would probably be in there in a year or two upgrading to new hearing aids.  I decided to go with the better hearing aids.  I gave her half of the amount and told her I would be back in a week or two to pick them up and be fitted.

My teeth cheaper the Chica’s

The last thing I would have to do in Yuma was getting Chica’s teeth cleaned.  A vet in CA told me that she had Periodontal disease and quoted me a price anywhere from $850 to $1100.  YUK!!!  I took the quote to the Animal Hospital of Yuma and they quoted my a price of $470 for the same procedure.  However they wanted to see her first before going ahead with anything.  I took her in and they said she had a mild case of Periodontal disease and needed a tooth extracted.  But what she had could be cleared up with a deep cleaning which would only run about $185.  What a difference.

Anyway I took her in and since I had her teeth cleaned there last year, they gave me a discount and only charged me $165.  Now she is good to go for another year.

Let me see – My teeth – $35  Chica’s teeth – $165.  DUH!!

Scattering of Ashes

I then returned to CA and stayed at O’Neill Park.  My sister Bev had found online someone who would scatter my parents ashes in the Saddleback Mountains.  How cool is that.  We originally planned it for February 28, but it was raining and overcast and we had to postpone it until March 7.  I got up early on the 7th and took a bunch of stuff over to a picnic site where we would be able to see the plane when it flew over scattering their ashes.  Once the family showed up we were all ready to view it.  She circled several times before scattering the ashes.  It was really a beautiful site.  I tried to get pics but they didn’t come out too good.  We combined both my father’s and mother’s ashes together.  It was their wishes to have their ashes scattered over Saddleback Mountain and we were so happy that we finally carried out their wishes.  I will never see Saddleback Mountain again without remembering this day and the beauty of seeing their ashes float down to the trees.

We then spent the afternoon roasting hot dogs and eating a great picnic lunch.  It was fun seeing everyone again.

Back in CA

I wanted to see if I could qualify for Lasic surgery on my eyes.  I HATE wearing glasses and was hoping I could have the surgery so I would only need glasses for reading.  I made an appointment and went in to see the eye doctor.  I found out that I have cataracts and astigmatism in both eyes so the doctor suggested I have cataract surgery and he would also replace my lens to correct the astigmatism.  He would do one eye at a time with a period of time between eyes.  I was ready to go.

Then he stated that he would have to get an OK from my primary physician.  My previous primary physician was with Kaiser Permanente who I have not see since I started full timing almost 5 years ago.  I usually went to Renown Care in Reno each year and they would renew my prescriptions.

I checked on the Internet to find a Primary Care Physician in the area and I found a real gem.  I was able to make an appointment on line and was notified by his office almost immediately.  I went in and he checked me out but wanted to run a CT Scan of my heart and blood work as well.  The CT Scan came back with a 324 result so he suggested I seen a Cardiologist as well as a Pulmonary doctor because he could hear some noise in my lungs.  I went to the Cardiologist and after speaking some time with her she wanted me to take a treadmill test.

I finally got the OK from my new Primary Physician and made the appointments with the eye doctor.  I had to go in and get further measurements of my eyes and scheduled the right eye to be done on the 2nd and the left eye on the 8th.  There is usually a two week wait between eyes but he knew I would be headed up north for a summer job so he made an exception.

Back in Yuma 

After much prodding and poking by doctors I returned to Yuma to pick up my hearing aids.  That went very well but they didn’t order the charger for me as I requested so I will have to return later.  I also stopped in to see Gayle and Jim at the space they are renting in Yuma while their get dental work completed.  It was a really nice area and very scenic since they are so close to the mountains.  Chica also enjoyed seeing Sophie and Elvis and had fun on a walk with them.  I stupidly didn’t get any pics while I was there.

Heading to Phoenix

I was going to spend a few more days in Yuma, but when the temperature hit 94 and we have no hookups at the casino I decided to go where I have full hookups.  More on that later.

Advertisements

Sleepless In Seattle

Invited to visit Marti and Charlie

After staying at my campground at Panorama Point, Marti and Charlie invited me to come and see Seattle where they live.  So Chica and I took off in the RV around 2:30 Sunday afternoon and headed west.  We arrived at their home about 6:00 and Charlie parked my rig in the space in back of their RV.  It just fit with inches to spare.

Marti fixed a delicious vegetable soup and then we talked about places we would visit the next day.  What a day it turned out to be.  We were on the go all day.

REI’s Flagship Store

I have been in a few REI stores in Southern California but nothing that could even come close to this one.  This is a waterfall as you walk into the store.

DSC_0458

Here are Marti and Charlie at the entrance.  I was like a kid going into a candy store.  What a place.

DSC_0464

Looking for a kayak?

DSC_0460

How about ladies tennis shoes?  Every color of the rainbow.

DSC_0461

For anyone purchasing hiking boots you can see how well they can fit your feet using this special rock surface.

DSC_0462

I could have been very happy spending the entire day in this store, but we had lots of ground to cover so had to move on.

Monorail to downtown

Charlie parked the van and we walked to the Seattle Center where we road the monorail to downtown.  This is the same monorail that was built for the Seattle World’s Fair.

DSC_0467

Once downtown we walked to a place called “Inn At The Market” where Charlie explained that there was a famous scene filmed there in “Sleepless In Seattle”.  Rob Reiner tells Tom Hanks that girls like guys with cute butts.  Then Rob proceeds to tell Tom that he has a cute butt.

Of course Charlie is playing Tom Hanks and I am playing Rob Reiner who tells Tom that he has a cute butt.  HA!  This pic was the same spot that the movie was filmed at.  Aren’t we both great actors?

DSC_0470

First Starbucks

These next few picks were taken outside of the VERY FIRST Starbucks.  Check out the logo as it is much different then the present logo Starbuck’s uses.  The place was packed to the gills and you couldn’t even get in the front door.

DSC_0475

DSC_0477

Pike Place Market

Then we took a walk thru the Pike Place Market.  What a place!  They had anything and everything you could think of there.

Flowers anybody?

DSC_0479

Meat?

DSC_0484

Athenian Cafe

This is where Rob Reiner and Tom Hanks were sitting while filming “Sleepness in Seattle”.

DSC_0486

DSC_0487

Marti and I sitting in the same seats.

DSC_0488

Fish Throwing

In the fish market when someone would purchase a fish one of the employees would pick it up and throw it to another employee who would wrap it up.  Everyone would stand around a cheer and it got the crowd very excited.  It was something to see.

DSC_0491

If you look close you can see the fish on it’s way to the wrapper.

DSC_0492

World Famous Gum Wall

National Geographic wrote an article about the most unsanitary tourist attractions.  The gum wall was 2nd only losing to the Blarney Stone.  This wall was made because a comedy club told everyone at the entrance to get rid of their gum before entering.  So everyone started this huge gum wall.

DSC_0496

DSC_0495

DSC_0497

DSC_0498

Then after seeing this gross work of art we went to lunch.  HA!  There was just too much packed into this one day to cover in one blog post so I am going to pick up later and finish our adventures.

 

From Super HOT to Super COLD

Played Hookey

Last Monday I called in sick Cough, cough!) to go with friends to visit a brothel.  We all went to the World Famous Mustang Ranch for lunch and a tour of the place.  It sure beat working at Amazon, that is for sure.  HA!

DSC_0714

We got there and had lunch at their Wild Horse Saloon restaurant/bar.  Lunch was good especially with the pole dancers in the background.  After lunch we then took the tour.  It started with a big room where your could buy souvenirs as well as many adult toys.  Having worked at Amazon we see many more adult toys then even at the Mustang Ranch.  HA!

Our tour guide told us all about the ranch and took us through many of the rooms where the girls do their thing with their clients.  It was very interesting to see the many different styles in each room.

We were not allowed to bring in either cameras or cell phones so I couldn’t get any pics.  However we did get several pics once we got outside.

Here is a great pic of the girls in our group.

DSC_0708

DSC_0709

Us guys strike a few poses as well.

DSC_0711

DSC_0713

It was a great time which we all enjoyed.

Weather dips in single digits

The weather here has dipped into the single digits.  It is very cold at night.  One morning I woke up and checked the temps.  It said it was 3 degrees feeling like -6.  Hows that for cold?

My 20 gallon propane tank was empty one morning when I awoke and the furnace was blowing cold air.  YUK!  I switched over to my 5 gallon tank.  A couple of nights later I awoke at 2:30 in the morning and found the tank was empty.  I had to switch over to my propane tank in my RV.  It was very cold going out in my pajamas.  I decided to have the park fill the 20 gallon tank 1/2 full so hopefully I have enough propane to last until I leave.

Tanks frozen

Since the weather is so cold all my tanks have frozen.  I have not had water for about almost a week.  The weather warmed up yesterday and when I got home I was able to run my water.  However when I got up this morning there was barely a trickle out of the tap.  I hope that it will thaw out some so I can take a nice shower as I really need one.

I am not the only one in that predicament.  Many of the other campers I have talked to have the same problem.

4 working days to go

My last working day is Wednesday.  I plan to get everything packed up and ready to go and leave here Friday morning.  I will arrive in SO CA on Saturday to enjoy time with family and friends on Sunday and for the 2 weeks after that.  My sister has planned getting together with family and many friends I have not seen for over a year.  It should be a blast!!

 

 

Arrived in Fernley

My route to Fernley

I left Albuquerque on Sunday and traveled to the Meteor Crater RV Park just outside of Winslow, AZ.  It is a nice park and offers a 15% discount to Escapees.  I stayed here back in 2010 on my way to my first Balloon Fiesta.

From there I drove to Bullhead City, AZ where I spent 2 nights with my brother-in-law’s twin brother.  The weather was much warmer there then in Albuquerque with temps getting into the 80’s.

On Wednesday I drove to the Beatty RV Park in Beatty, AZ.  I always stay there at least once a year either coming or going from my winter job in Fernley, NV.

On to Fernley

Then on Thursday made the 288 mile drive up highway 95 to the Desert Rose RV Park in Fernley, NV.  This will be home for Chica and I for the next 2+ months.  The weather was very nice during the day with temps in the low 70’s.  However it is colder at night with temps in the low 30’s.

Parked in my old space from last year

Last year I reserved my old space #140.  It is close to the office and in the front of the park.  Shannon greeted me as I drove in.  She is in the same space as last year right next to me.  Rodger also came over to say Hi and told me how things are going thus far.

Requested to be a picker but got stower instead

I had requested on my Amazon application that I wanted to be a picker.  Instead this year I will be a stower.  The stower puts all the merchandise on the shelves.  I am hearing good things about this job and it will be much less walking then the picker job I had last year (12-14 miles per day).  Already I am glad they gave me this job and I haven’t even started.

My first day will be tomorrow when I have orientation.  I will have the same work days as last year – Sunday through Wednesday with Thursday, Friday and Saturday off until the peak season hits.

Lots of honey dos today

I have lots of things to take care of today including a nice long shower, lots of laundry, set up Drs. appointments for renewing my prescriptions, empty out my car, hook up 20 gallon propane tanked supplied by the park, etc.  So I will be busy.

I will try to take some pics and get them in my next post of the surrounding area.

 

Balloons, balloons and more balloons!

A Gambling Fool

A bunch of us went to the Sandia Casino for their $5 brunch.  We had to wait in line but it was worth it.  Lots of good food.

I had to get a players card to get admitted for lunch and then just had to use up the $25 they give you with the card.  I didn’t win anything using the card but added another $15 and walked out of there with $136.  Not bad!  I was up to $222 but didn’t walk away then as I knew I should.

Up early and over to the balloon field.

I woke up early and decided to go across the street to the balloon launching field to see the balloons off.  It is amazing how many people are there at 6:00am.  The place was packed.  This group of balloons is know as the dawn patrol.  They are the first to go up in the morning an they test the winds for the remainder of the balloons.

DSC_0514

The lady dressed in the referee suit is actually the one that directs the balloons when they launch.  She tells them when they can take off and keeps the crowd back from the balloon.

DSC_0524

Then the rest of the balloons go up in the mass ascension.  What a site to see!  This is the Moo Cow balloon which is really large.  It is just beginning to get blown up.

DSC_0575

Here it is almost completely blown up.

DSC_0586

And here it is flying.

DSC_0633

It was an utterly fantastic balloon.  HA!  HA!

DSC_0595

The balloons are all bunched together since there were so many of them.  I felt like a kid in a candy store.

DSC_0592

Here is a couple pics of the bees.  They are always crowd favorites.

DSC_0601

DSC_0649

Crazy People

You see many different crazy people throughout the midway.

DSC_0562

DSC_0569

Up up and away

This is a pic of a couple waving to the crowd after beginning their ascent.

DSC_0610

This one is for my friends at Wells Fargo Advisors.  Please make lots of money for me.

DSC_0620

I really enjoyed this guy with his jet pack.  Very cool!

DSC_0646

It was a great morning with all my balloon firends.

Back on line at the Balloon Fiesta

Back on Millenicom

I was a BAD BOY and got my hand slapped by Millenicom for going over my allotted limit.  My friend Ken Fears of These are the Voyages fame told me about an app for my Mac called Net Monitor which I have installed.  It will help me stay out of hot water with Millenicom.

Abiquiu Lake

Many of us met up at Abiquiu Lake and got in the Happy Hour routine.  Roger even cooked ribs for our evening meal on his Traeger oven.  They cooked all day and were they ever yummy.

IMG_0378

IMG_0379

Sandia Casino Parking

Then it was off to the Sandia Casino just north of the Balloon Fiesta.  We stayed there two nights .  We were all able to park close to each other.

Off to the Balloon Fiesta grounds

Then on the 1st we headed to the Balloon Fiesta grounds.  John and Linda went ahead along with Terry and Karen and Roger to get our assigned spots and set up.  Then we all followed.  It is nice being set up for 13 days without having to move.  There are no hookups, but many of us have solar panels to provide our electricity.  The honey wagon will also come by and for a measly $25 (HA!) you can have your black and grey tanks emptied.  You can also spend the same getting water, but several of us have 6 gallon water containers that we can haul back and forth.

Only a few balloons have gone up and the official starting date is Sat the 5th.  It is always an exciting time when all the balloons go up.  In the meantime here are a few pics of our group at Happy Hour.

DSC_0388

DSC_0389

DSC_0390

DSC_0392

Cookie took advantage of the great sunlight and Melinda’s sun oven to make a dump cake.  It was uuum good.

DSC_0393

More people are coming in everyday and are group is growing.  Stay tuned for the balloon pics.

A Crazy Month!

Brakes repaired and back on the road

I was finally able to get the brakes repaired and am now back on the road.  The caliper on the right front brake had seized causing all kinds of damage to my rotor.  I had to have that replaced as well as both front brakes replaced.  I then headed to Laramie, WY where I had to have my drug test performed for my Amazon stint this winter.

I spent one night outside of Laramie at the Curt Gowdy State Park.  It was nice but hard to get level and they charge $17 a night for no hook-ups.  If you have a boat it would be a great place to go.

DSC_0355

I spent a couple of nights in Laramie at a KOA thanks to the advice of Steve.  It was nice but too expensive for my taste.  I would much prefer boondocking down a lonely country road.

I then headed back to Saratoga, WY to pick up my mail.  I was only going to stay there a couple of days before meeting my friends in Colorado, but wound up being there for a week.  This was when all the rain began and the major flooding in Colorado.  I didn’t want to even drive into any problems due to weather.  Besides I had an electric site for only $10 per day.  It rained and was overcast almost every day so I was glad to have the electricity.

Meeting friends in Salida, CO?

I was going to drive to Salida, CO where I was going to meet up with friends and then travel further south.  This is where the fun began.  I got to the 40/70 junction in Colorado and my brakes started getting REALLY mushy.  I had been going down a long grade behind a truck hauling timber.  There were many turns where you had to slow down to 20 mph.  Not very fun!

Then I noticed my brakes smelling and pulled over for about an hour to let them cool down.  Obviously it wasn’t enough time and it scared the crap out of me further down the road just past Empire, CO.  I located a Minton Park using my Ultimate Campgrounds app on my IPhone.  I unhooked and drove back there to check it out.  Fortunately Empire was only a mile from where I had pulled over.

The park sign said you needed permission to camp there, but no one was around.  I then drove past their Police Station so decided to check with them.  They gave me permission so I figured that was good enough.

I then used the Allstays Camp and RV app on my IPhone to check the grades of the roads leading out of Empire.  I did not want to go west as I originally planned since there were several long grades so I decided I would go east to Denver and have my brakes checked there.  But after looking at the map I determined that was not the best idea either since there were two truck runaways at the bottom of 70.

I still didn’t feel comfortable driving so I contacted Coach Net and had them tow my rig to a Ford dealer in Denver.  When I got there in my Sami the dealer told me they could not work on my rig because of the length.  Doesn’t this sound familiar?

I test drove it around a bit and didn’t notice a problem with the brakes so I hooked up the Sami and decided to head on down to Abiquiu Lake to meet up with many friends who were camping there.  I knew I25 was flat with no major grades and the brakes were performing as they should.

To make a long story short I believe getting new brakes and immediately heading into the mountains with major downhill grades is not the thing to do.  They heated up on me and I was very lucky nothing major happened.

Made it to Abiquiu

I drove the 448 miles to Abiquiu Lake, NM without any problems.  There are many of us parked here for a week prior to moving on to the Albuquerque, NM Balloon Fiesta starting at the end of the month.

Got my hands slapped big time!

I was also notified by my Internet provider that I have exceeded their monthly limit big time.  While still in Wyoming while boondocking on the Wild Horse Canyon road I may have mentioned that I was about a mile from the towers.  I had great 4G reception and nobody to talk to way out in nowhere land.  So what do I do.  Watch free movies from my Amazon Prime account and several Angels baseball games as well.

Well that caught up with me and they cut off my usage until the beginning of next month.  That is why I have not blogged since 9/5.  Jeannie of On the Road with Riley fame is parked next to me and was very gracious in allowing me to use her Internet connection to make this post.  Thanks Jeannie!!!

Crazy month for me

Yes it has been a crazy month and glad everything has settled down.  Now I am doing what I enjoy.  Camping in a beautiful spot with great friends.

This was a sunset pic taken the other night.  As always the sunsets in NM are spectacular.

DSC_0369

Thanks all for being so patient.