16-56 To Yuma

All I want for Christmas is my one front tooth

The day after I completed my camp hosting duties as I was eating I felt something weird and it turned out to be my front tooth.  I had my front tooth knocked out when I was 18 and 50+ years later the crown decided it had enough eating and came out.  A couple days later I had to attend a going away party for all the camp hosts.  What a bummer.

Since I am moving into Oregon I was able to get cheaper insurance then my costly AARP prescription drug plan and my medicare supplement by replacing them with a Kaiser Permanente plan.  For $41 they have a dental plan that covers minor dental and cleanings. However they were only able to offer me a flipper device which attaches via suction to your gum and gives you a temporary fix.  However you can’t eat with this device.

So I called Dr Eva Urena’s office in Algadones, MX to check on the possibility of getting an implant.  Sure enough they can do it and the cost would be about 1/4 the cost here in the US.  I decided to fly down to Yuma, get a motel for a few days with a rental car to get around in.  I booked everything on line, called the PetHotel (Petsmart) and made a reservation to board Chica.  Since Chica stayed at the PetHotel in Aliso Viejo, CA they were able to get all her records.

Left last Saturday at 11:00 am to take Chica to Tualatin, OR in plenty of time for my drive up to the Portland Airport at 4:55 pm.  Her is a pic of Chica seeing me off.  She was not very happy.  I always feel so bad whenever I leave her anywhere, even at the groomer.

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I got to the airport in plenty of time even with the heavy traffic due to an accident.

Flight #1 Portland to San Francisco

It took about 2 hours to get to San Francisco where I had a 3 hour 52 minute layover.  I walked around the airport for a while and noticed the first game of the World Series was on.  I found a nice place where I could pick up a sandwich and beer to watch the end of the game.  Wouldn’t you know it but the game went into extra innings and I had finished my sandwich and beer.  I figured I ought to get another beer so I could continue watching the game.  I sipped that but it was gone and the game still going on.  I left the bar and found a seat in the waiting are where I could still see the game.  It was a great game but too long with KC finally winning.

Flight #2 San Francisco to San Diego

At 10:40 pm the 2nd plane took off for San Diego and landed there at 12:16 am (now into Wednesday).  This was going to be the worst part of my journey.  I have a 6 hour and 14 minute layover.  I was upstairs in the boarding area getting my phone and computer charged up.  The chairs are also much more comfortable up there.  Then a policeman comes up and tells me I can’t wait up there as they are cleaning the area so I have to go downstairs.  NO COMFORTABLE SEATING DOWNSTAIRS.  Plus I have to wait over 6 hours until my next flight.  Nothing is open and there is no place to plug in.  They don’t even have a vending machine.  That was probably the longest 6 hours I have spent.

Flight #3 San Diego to Phoenix

Finally at about 5:30 am I made my way back through the TSA area for the second time on my journey.  YUK !  The plane took off at 6:30 am and landed in Phoenix at 7:53 am.  Then I had to hike to the complete opposite end of the airport to get my next flight.  My layover was only 52 minutes and I was able to get a strong cup of coffee to keep me going.

Flight #4 Phoenix to Yuma

Finally I was off to my destination in Yuma at 8:45 am landing at 9:51 am.  From there I walked to the Hertz booth where I had reserved a car on-line.  I am glad I did reserve it as everyone behind me weren’t able to get a car until late in the afternoon.  Picked up the car and off I went.

Too early for check-in.

I was going to check-in clean up and brush my teeth before going to the dentist, but realized I couldn’t check into the motel until 3:00pm.  What a bummer!!!!!

I decided after traveling all night I had better brush my teeth before going to the dentist.  I found a McDonalds and grabbed my tooth brush and tooth paste and used their bathroom.  I also bought breakfast there as I was starving.

Off to Algadones

I made my dental appointment for 12:00 pm so after eating and brushing my teeth I headed to Algadones.  Dr Eva needed a CT Scan of my mouth in order to decide how to proceed with my implant.  Her office ordered  someone to pick me up, take me to have my CT Scan and drive me back to their office.  All this only took about 1/2 hour.  Then she and a Periodontist conferred on my implant.  It seems that there was still a portion of my root still left in my gum.  They decided to cut into my gum remove the remaining root and then replace it with bone and the implant at the same time.  YUK!!!  They wouldn’t be able to do this until tomorrow.

Early Thursday I was the first appointment.  A specialist worked with her to complete the process and I was out of there and heading back to my room to heal.  They gave me pain medication and antibiotics.  The implant went well, but they wanted me to return Friday morning for a follow-up.   That is one of the main advantages of the dentist in Algadones.  They will do anything to accomodate you.  Dr. Eva knew that I had flown down to Yuma expressly for the dental work and would be flying back on Saturday.

Anyway I got everything done and now just have to wait 4 months to get my permanent tooth while my mouth heals.

Leaving Saturday for Portland

I only have three flights to contend with on Saturday and will be home at 5:29 pm. Then to Tualatin to pick up my baby.  I can’t wait.

Then in 4 months turn around and do it all again.  Hopefully fewer then seven flights.

 

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Back on the road

Left Oceanside

I saw my eye doctor for the last time for a while and got my medical for my new job so now I was ready to get out of Dodge.  I decided to wait until Sunday Apr 26 to leave.  I will be driving up the 5 so wanted to keep traffic to a minimum (HA!!) going thru LA.  It was still a rat race and only made it to Castaic where I called it quits.  I was tired, the wind was blowing and it was getting late so I pulled into the Valencia Village RV Park for the night.

I got up the next day with hopes of moving on but the wind was really blowing with gusts up to 35 mph.  I don’t know about you, but I hate driving in the wind, so I paid for another night.  Then I realized there is a Camping World not far away.  I had a rear vent cover blow off some where in my travels and was trying to replace the cover.  But on a 1992 rig that is just about impossible.  I couldn’t find anything on line.  Many of the components used on my rig are no longer being made.  I headed to Camping World to see what I could do.  While there I found out they could replace my rear bathroom vent with a fantastic fan.  They had one in stock so I paid for it and scheduled it to be replaced the following day.  That meant I would have to stay another day at the park as they couldn’t replace it until 3:00.

Chica was a hit at Camping World

The following day I drove the rig to Camping World and checked in.  I asked them if I could bring Chica into the customer waiting room.  Camping World is very dog friendly so she came in with me.  Immediately she was a big hit.  Many of the staff came in to see here.  At first she was a bit overwhelmed, but she finally got used to everyone.  Sorry but I didn’t think of taking pics.

It took a bit longer then I expected as they were very busy, but finally finished and now I have a really nice rear fan.  We headed back to the park and spent our last night there.  By the way this is a great park if anyone wants to visit Magic Mountain.  It is only a couple of miles away.

Elks Lodges

The next night we stopped at the Visalia Elks Lodge.  For $10 I had a great rib dinner and met lots of nice people.  Then it was on to the Lodi Elks.  I was invited to their Happy Hour and met a lot of fellow RV’ers.

My next stop was the Red Bluff Elks Lodge where I only spent one night.  I love the Elks Lodges since they usually have full hookups and only cost $15 – $20 per night.  They all have a nice bar and many nights I get a great dinner.

HELP!!

I was going to cross into Oregon and stay at the Ashland Elks Lodge.  Forget it!  They only offer parking in a parking lot with very little space.  I did see a red/white 24′ LD but there was no place to park.  I checked Allstays (great APP for locating campgrounds) and there wasn’t much around the Ashland area so it headed north to Medford.  

I found the Medford Elks Lodge and parked in front as I couldn’t see any RV’s.  They had a sign on the door that said the lodge had been closed down.  Not sure what that was all about but I needed a place to stay as it was getting late.  I decided to keep heading north and stop at the first RV park I could find.  I landed in Rogue River and the first park was full, but they suggested another park next door to them.  I really landed a gem.  It was $35 per night which is more then I usually like to pay, but she put me right on the Rogue River.

Didn’t want to leave

It is a really clean park with great showers.  We walked right out our door and the river was only ten feet away.  Chica loved looking at the Canadian geese that lived on the river.

The next morning I got up and paid for another day.  I needed to relax a bit as we had been driving every day.  The owner suggested going into town for breakfast and that sounded like a good idea. I had a great breakfast at the Cottage Cafe and it was really good.  

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Chica guards our home

Since we were right on the river we saw many Canadian geese.  In the evening they would come out of the water and feed on the grass around our rig.  Of course Chica had to let them know who was boss.

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Salem, OR

Our last stop before my summer home was an Elks Lodge in Salem, OR.  I stayed there for 2 nights to get organized before heading to the campground at Lake Harriet.  I called my employer to get last minute info about the next few days and instructions on getting to the campground.

Then it was honey do stuff.  I took Chica to PetSmart to get bathed and groomed and have her nails trimmed and I got a haircut.  Then I did a some major shopping for groceries.

Off to the campground

Today I am heading out to my new campground at Lake Harriet.  I will be passing through a small town called Estacada which will probably be where I will be doing my weekly shopping.  I am not sure what kind of cell phone or Internet service I will get at Lake Harriet so here’s hoping with my booster I can get connected.

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.

Getting things done at Mittry Lake

Still at Mittry Lake

Since I arrived here I have replaced my GPS, Dish Receiver and pocket camera.  My camera stopped working last year but didn’t want to spend the money to replace it.  It was a Nikon CoolPix and I loved the camera but it just stopped working.  I had already sent it into Nikon during it’s warranty period and they were able to fix the problem, but since then it started the same problem over again and decided it was time for a new one.

I went to Best Buy where I was able to pick up a new Sony Cyber Shot.  I looked at them all but decided this one had many of the features of my Nikon and would be easiest to get used to.  So far I am very happy with it although the flash pics aren’t the greatest.  I guess I will have to read the manual for a change.  Sure Jim!

My next item was a new GPS.  My old one was a reconditioned unit I had bought through WOOT several years ago and it gave me many years of instructions on how to get where I was going.  Then on the way to Yuma I plugged it in and it never did come on.  I picked up a new Garmin at Best Buy also and am really please with it.  I looked at several different models including the TOMTOM but decided on sticking with the Garmin in the same size I had.  So far I like it much better then the one I had.

Last but not least, I set my Satellite Dish up but couldn’t get the receiver box to even turn on.  I contacted Dish support who determined that I might need a new receiver box.  They gave me the address of a local retailer in Yuma so I headed over to them to see if they could test my box.  They plugged it in and again nothing.  They did have a replacement box in stock which they programmed for me and now I also have TV.  Hot Dog!

Chica’s Teeth

When I was in So CA I took Chica in to get her nails clipped and saw the vet.  He mentioned that she had a loose tooth and possible Periodontal disease.  YUK!  Poor little girl!  He gave me an estimate of $800 – $1100 to get her fixed up.  I thought I would go to the vet in Yuma at Foothill Animal Hospital to get a second opinion.  Before I took her in I stopped by there with the estimate I received from the first vet.  They literally cut that in half and said it would cost less then $500, however they wanted to see her first.  Then next day I took her in and the vet examined her and determined she didn’t really have periodontal disease but she did need a good teeth cleaning.  It is common among her breed that plack really builds up.  I took her in to the same vet last year and they did her teeth then  so early Thursday we are off to the vet.  They will also bring her up to date on her shots and trim her nails again (they grow so fast).

 

Please Daddy, not the dentist again!

Please Daddy, not the dentist again!

Life is good at Mittry Lake

Lots of friends, great weather, good food, and its totally FREE.  What more could you ask for.

Off to Yuma

Thanks

I would like to thank everyone for the thoughtful comments concerning my Mom.  I am so lucky to have so many friends like yourselves.

Finally off to Yuma

I was finally able to pick up my rig at the Ford dealer where they fixed my steering box, upgraded my A/C and did my front brakes.  Then I went back to Doheny State Beach for 2 days to get organized and purchase food.  My sister Bev took me to Costco and Trader Joe’s where I really stocked up.  I packed up on Friday morning to make the drive to Yuma.  Glad to get out of all the traffic in So CA.

Cool driving

I am sure glad that the Ford dealer was able to fix the A/C.  Since my rig is an older model they could not just add freon, but had to upgrade to the latest freon they now use in all the new vehicles.  It was getting hot crossing the desert and both Chica and myself were nice and cool.

Mittry Lake

I headed straight to Mittry Lake where I met up with friends who were already there.  Jim and Gayle, Debbie, Chris, Jeanne, Barbara, Suzanne and Kim were already there and Chica and I moved right in.  Martin and Charlie arrived later and it was good seeing them.  It sure was fun meeting up with old friends as well as some new ones as well.

Chica also met here friends Sophie and Elvis as well as Rupert and Eliot, Katie and Riley.  She was really glad to see them.

 Visited Stan

The next day I drove over to the Paradise Casino to visit Stan who was a fellow camp host last summer at Baker Lake.  He had called and mentioned that he would only be there another day or two so decided to stop in and pay him a visit.  He is going back east to Mississippi.  It was good seeing him before he left.

I also need groceries so headed over to Fry’s to restock my new refrigerator.

Off on a hike

A few of us left on a hike about 9:00am to avoid the heat.  It was a hike I have done many times before so knew where we were going.  This is a pic of our rigs looking back from our hike.

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I will take more pics of the area and Chica once I get my camera charged up.

I am glad to be back on the road and meeting up with friends.

1 1/2 Days To Go

Almost over

My term at Amazon is almost over with only 1 1/2 days remaining in my schedule.  By 11:00pm Saturday I will be done.  KAPUT!!!  I will probably be heading out Monday morning for So CA to see family for the holidays.  I can’t wait to get into some warmer weather.  This winter wasn’t as cold as last year (thank God) but it is still cold.

I go thru 5 gallons of propane a week trying to keep Chica comfortable.  I will really be glad to get to a warmer climate.

RV has new shoes

I got 2 new tires for the front end.  I checked out prices and the Purcell’s in Fernley gave me a great price on a couple of Michelins.  I had to set my alarm for 9:30am to get up and go to Purcell’s  after only three hours sleep.  YUK!!  I will be so glad to get back to normal sleep habits.  This night shift is for the birds!

Heading to Southern California

I will probably take my normal route down 95 when I head to California.  I always stop in the Beatty RV Park which is about 100 miles north of Las Vegas.  Then it will be on to warm climates.  HURRAH!!!

I am looking forward to seeing my Mom and sisters and their families as well as a few friends.  Then after the first of the year it is off to Quartzsite and Roger’s 1/2 Acre and all my friends there.  If you are anywhere near Quartzsite in January stop by for a few days and take part in the fun.

Back on the Road

Working is OK as it helps to get the money for tires and other RV repairs and a little bit in the bank as well, but it sure will be nice getting back on the road.  I really miss that when I am working.  Chica misses that as well.  See you all down the road!!

 

 

 

Not enough ZZZZZZZZ’s

Three down five to go

I just completed my third week at Amazon with five weeks to go.  Not too much to write about which explains the lack of my posts.

Lack of sleep

I chose the night shift since I thought it would be better for Chica.  She would sleep through the night and only wake up once I got home.  Then she wouldn’t miss me as much and not go crazy when I got home.  So far that has worked out well although she still does get a little crazy when I get home but not as much as when I worked days.

It works out better for her but NOT for me.  I get off work at 4:30am,  but I cannot get to sleep immediately when I get home.  I watch the news and then hit the sack at 6:00.  I tried going to bed earlier but my neighbor works the day shift and starts his diesel at 5:15 and it runs until 5:30 when he leaves for work on the day shift.

Then about 6:30 to 7:00 the sun rises and pours lots of sun into my rig waking me up.  Sometimes I can roll over and go back to sleep and other times I just can’t get back to sleep.  Most of the time I have to force myself to get back to sleep.  Total sleep for the night is usually only 4-5 hours.  YUK!  Sometimes I will try to nap in the afternoon but I am not usually a nap person so that doesn’t work.

I have tried everything.  One couple I met on my shift told me they go to bed immediately when they get home.  I tried that but the noisy diesel always woke me up.  Others had suggested drinking a couple of beers, but at 5:00 in the morning that does not sound too appealing.

Caught a bad cold

Last weekend I was in bed all three of my days off with a nasty cold.  I had gotten too run down from lack of sleep.  I did get over that, but it was not a pleasant time off from work.  This week I tried an over the counter sleep aid called Melatonin.  I found it didn’t work that well with me and it gave me a jittery feeling all day.  I have also covered up some of my windows which does help.

Aching muscles better

It takes a couple of weeks for your muscles to get used to Amazon work.  This year rather then packing, picking or stowing I am taking inventory of bins.  You have to count everything in a bin and record it on your scanner.  It involves a lot of bending low for the bottom bins and standing on a stool for the upper bins.

I still get sore every day but it is not nearly so bad thanks to a daily dosage of Aleve.  That stuff really works miracles.

Chica gets used to her new home

When we first got her she would go crazy barking at the neighbor’s dog.  She has really calmed down now and only sits and quietly (most of the time) watches.  Her head perks up each time they come out their door but she doesn’t bark.

She really enjoys her walks during the day and meets all the other critters in the neighborhood.  It is funny but she doesn’t pay too much attention to other dogs while she is walking, but when she is looking out the window she will bark at the same dog if she sees them go by.  I guess she wants to be out there with them.  This is her favorite spot as it is in the sun and she can see all the activity by the neighbor.

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Early Thanksgiving

This Friday Amazon is giving all their employees a huge Thanksgiving dinner.  They do it every year in appreciation of all the hard work we do during the peak season.  More on that later.  It will be the first year I have Thanksgiving dinner at 12:30am.

Weather has been good

We were lucky and didn’t get the huge weather front that came down from Alaska.  It bypassed us  and I’m glad it did.  Right now the days are in the mid 50’s and nights in the mid 30’s.  My catalytic heater runs 24/7 and I have my electric heater set for 65 and it goes on and off during the night.  Chica also has her bed warmer on 24/7 and loves to sleep on it.  So we are both comfortable.  I am only about 100′ from the bath and laundry so am using their facilities.  It is nice to be so close.

That is all for now.  I need to take a shower and walk Chica and then it is off to the Silverado casino to meet up with some friends for $1 beers and watch Monday night football.