Friday, June 8, 2018

EXCUSES

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I HAVEN’T BLOGGED FOR TOO LONG, BUT I HAVE TWO GOOD EXCUSES.

EXCUSE #1

THIS IS THAT TIME OF THE YEAR WHEN WE OFTEN POST PICTURES OF MARY’S PLANTS  SHE SPENDS A LOT OF TIME, EFFORT, AND MONEY ON PLANTS AND FLOWERS FOR HER YARD. THIS YEAR SHE’S BEEN UNDER ATTACK BY A HERD OF NOCTURNAL HAVALINAS. MAN, DO THEY RAISE “HELL” IN THE YARD, AND THEY EAT ANYTHING.

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EXCUSE #2

WHEN I CHANGED MY RESIDENCY FROM SOUTH DAKOTA TO ARIZONA I BOUGHT A FISHING LIC. AND WENT BACK TO TROUT FISHING. I DECIDED TO POST TO THE BLOG WHEN I CAUGHT MY FIRST TROUT IN OVER 18 YEARS, BUT I’VE BEEN OUT FISHING A HALF A DOZEN MORNINGS AND HAVE BEEN SKUNKED EVERYTIME.

WHY?

ON SUNDAY WE’RE GOING TO PHOENIX? THE TEMPERATURE IS GOING TO BE 110 DEGREES! WHY IN THE WORLD? TO MEET DAVE AND CINDY TO HAVE BREAKFAST WITH THEIR BEAGLE “SALLY” AT THE LOCAL SPORTS BAR……. DUH

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Thursday, May 24, 2018

TOYOTA PRIUS

WE RECENTLY BOUGHT A USED 2016 TOYOTA PRIUS, A SMALL COMPACT CAR, BUT HAS PLENTY OF ROOM FOR THE TWO OF US. IF YOU BUY A PRIUS YOU’RE INTO GAS MILEAGE (MPG).

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THE EPA RATES OUR PRIUS AT 54 MPG CITY AND 50 MPG HIWAY. THE CAR HAS A 4 CYLINDER GAS MOTOR AND AN ELECTRIC MOTOR WITH A BANK OF BATTERIES UNDER THE BACK SEAT.

ACCORDING TO THE COMPUTER IN THE CAR, OUR PRIUS HAS AVERAGED 54.6 MPG FOR THE LIFE OF THE CAR (21,370 MILES).

THE GAS TANK HOLDS 11.3 GALLONS, SO IN THEORY WE CAN GO 600+ MILES ON A TANK OF GAS FOR $33.

SHAKEDOWN

WE DECIDED TO TAKE A SHAKEDOWN ROADTRIP WITH THE PRIUS TO LAUGHLIN FOR A NIGHT AT THE COLORADO BELLE HOTEL AND CASINO. THE JUSTIFICATION FOR THE TRIP WAS THAT MARY COULD NOT FIND HER PURPLE JEANS AND WE WENT TO SEE IF WE LEFT THEM AT WINTER QUARTERS.

WE FOUND THE CAR TO BE COMFORTABLE ON THE TRIP, AND TOYOTA HAS ACTIVATED THE XM SATELLITE RADIO FOR THREE MONTHS SO WE WERE GROV’IN TO THE MUSIC OF THE 60’S. WE ALSO CHECKED  THE GAS MILEAGE THE OLD FASHIONED WAY BY FILLING UP THE GAS TANK AND DIVIDING MILES TRAVELLED BY GALLONS USED AND FOUND THE COMPUTER’S NUMBERS TO FAIRLY ACURATE.

MPG

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HERE ARE THE RESULTS, THE TRIP WAS 702.6 MILES AND WE AVERAGED 59.4 MILES PER GALLON OF GAS. AFTER DRIVING THE BIG RED MOUTAIN TRUCK AND GETTING 8 MILES TO THE GALLON PULLING A TRAILER I WAS SHOCKED BY THE LITTLE WHITE CAR !!!

ACTUALLY ON THE TRIP DOWN TO LAUGHLIN WHERE WE DROPPED FROM A  MOUNTAIN ALTITUDE OF 6300 FEET TO THE LOWER DESERT AT 600 FEET WE GOT 66 MPG. I ADMIT WE WERE TRYING AND ONLY USED THE FREEWAY FOR 300 MILES OF OUR 700 MILE TRIP. ON A 55 MILE STRETCH FROM WINSLOW TO FLAGSTAFF ON INTERSTATE 40 WE SET THE CRUISE ON 80 MPH AND THE LITTLE CAR GOT 43 MPG.

WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO MORE ROADTRIPS IN OUR FUTURE.

Thursday, May 10, 2018

THE END OF AN ERA

I BOUGHT THE BIG RED MOUNTAIN TRUCK EIGHTEEN AND A HALF YEARS AGO TO TOW MY 32 FOOT CAMPER THRU THE MOUNTAINS OF THE WEST. IT WAS A FORD F-250 WITH A GAS V-10 MOTOR. I KNEW WHERE EVERY GAS STATION WAS IN EVERY STATE WE EVER TRAVELLED THRU.

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TODAY, I TRADED IT ALL IN FOR A COMPACT “NEW TO ME” TOYOTA PRIUS.  IN ALL THOSE YEARS, THE TRUCK ONLY HAD 102,000 MILES ON IT.

SCOOTER

THE SCOOTER CHAPTER DIDN’T WORK OUT THE WAY I HAD DAY DREAMED IT. I THOUGHT I’D BE RIDING THE SCOOTER ON LOT’S OF TOURING ADVENTURES IN RETIREMENT. IN THE THREE YEARS I WENT ON ONE FANTASTIC TOUR WITH BOTH MY BROTHERS FROM WISCONSIN AROUND NORTH WESTERN ARIZONA.- INCLUDING THE GRAND CANYON. ONE PERFECT TOUR IN THREE YEARS? SO THE SCOOTER AND THE CARGO TRAILER WENT AS WELL.

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TOYOTA PRIUS

THE “NEW TO ME” COMPACT CAR IS A MIX OF THE OLD AND THE NEW IN MY MIND. IT REMINDS ME A LOT OF THE GREMLIN I BOUGHT IN 1970, WITH THE FOLD DOWN REAR SEATS AND CARGO AREA.  ON THE NEW SIDE I’D HAVE TO SPEND A WEEK WITH MY 14 YEAR OLD GRANDSON JUST TO UNDERSTAND THE ELECTRONICS AND SCREENS. APPARENTLY IT WILL PARALLEL PARK ITSELF IF YOU KNOW WHICH BUTTONS TO PUSH AMONG A MILLION OTHER FANCY THINGS. SHIT, I CAN’T EVEN TURN ON THE WINDSHEILD WIPERS. WISH ME LUCK!!

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  “SUNNY & 80”

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

TOMBSTONE & BISBEE

OUR ROADTRIP TOOK US INTO SOUTHERN ARIZONA. IN FACT BISBEE IS ONLY A FEW MILES FROM THE MEXICAN BORDER.

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WHILE IN TOMBSTONE WE SAW THE MOVIE, WENT TO THE GUNFIGHT AT THE “OK CORRAL”, HIT THE GIFT SHOPS, BOUGHT THE T-SHIRT, WALKED THE STREETS, AND OF COURSE GOT DRUNK WITH THE COWBOYS AT BIG NOSE KATE’S.

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ROSE TREE

THIS SINGLE ROSE BUSH WAS PLANTED IN 1864 AND NOW STANDS AS THE WORLD’S LARGEST ROSE TREE. IT BLOOMS IN APRIL, AND THE WHITE ROSE PETALS ARE LIKE SNOW ON THE GROUND.

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BIG NOSE KATE’S SALOON

WE SPENT SOME TIME IN ALL THE SALOONS INCLUDING DOC HOLIDAY’S AND THE CRYSTAL PALACE, BUT BIG NOSE KATE’S WAS OUR FAVORITE.

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MEN’S ROOM

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BISBEE

BISBEE IS HOME TO THE QUEEN COPPER MINE AND A HUGH OPEN PIT.

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THE OLD TOWN IS BUILT ALONG THE BASE OF THE MOUNTAIN AND UP A DRY GULCH, THAT BACK IN THE DAY WAS THE RED LIGHT DISTRICT. THE OLD BUILDINGS TODAY ARE MOSTLY ARTSY FARTSY AND ANTIQUES, RUN BY HIPPIES LEFT OVER FROM THE 60’S. MARY AND I ENJOYED THE COWBOYS OVER THE HIPPIES, AND SO WE DIDN’T REALLY LIKE BISBEE AND DIDN’T TAKE AS MANY PICTURES.

TEXAS CANYON

IF YOU’VE TRAVELED INTERSTATE 10 THROUGH ARIZONA YOU’VE DRIVEN BY TEXAS CANYON. IT’S A REST AREA JUST EAST OF BENSON WHERE IT LOOKS LIKE GOD JUST DUMPED A LOAD OF BIG BOLDERS FOR THE RATTLESNAKES.

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Monday, May 7, 2018

THE DEVIL’S HI-WAY

THE DEVIL’S HI-WAY, FORMLY KNOWN AS AZ ROUTE 666, IS PART OF US 191 WHICH FOLLOWS THE OLD CORONADO TRAIL FROM MEXICO TO CANADA.  THE SECTION THAT’S POPULAR WITH THE MOTOCYCLE CROWD IS THE 100 MILE STRETCH FROM ALPINE TO CLIFTON. WE DIDN’T COUNT THEM BUT IT’S RUMORED THAT THERE ARE 1,100 TURNS AND CURVES IN THE 100 MILE SECTION.

WE ARE ON A WEEK-END ARIZONA ROADTRIP TO TOMBSTONE AND BISBEE WITH THE HONDA, NOT THE SCOOTER.

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THESE DEAD TREES ARE A RESULT OF AN ARIZONA WILDFIRE SEVERAL YEARS BACK. THE STRETCH OF HI-WAY GOES THROUGH THE APACHE-SITEGRAVES NATIONAL FOREST. BTW, THE WHOLE FOREST INCLUDING SHOW LOW IS NOW IN STAGE II FIRE RESTRICTIONS WHICH PROHIBTS ALL FIRES, INCLUDING CAMPFIRES, SMOKING, AND EVEN CHARCOAL. WE ARE GOING TO REALLY MISS GRILLING OUT ON THE BACK DECK, BUT HOPEFULLY DURING THE MONSSON SEASON, JULY AND AUGUST, THE RESTRICTIONS WILL BE LIFTED.

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VIEWS FROM THE TOP.

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AT THE END OF THE 100 MILES OF MOUNTAIN ROAD WE DISCOVERED A HUGE WORKING COPPER MINE. ARIZONA IS THE COPPER STATE.

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DURING THE DRIVE WE SAW SOME WILDLIFE INCLUDING A BIG TOM TURKEY, COYOTE, DEER, AND BIG HORN SHEEP.

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TUNE IN TOMORROW FOR TOMBSTONE AND BISBEE.