Categories
Arizona Uncategorized

Wandering Around Eastern AZ

 I have been camping in way too much heat lately, and I’m very grumpy. I seem to choose the places that don’t have shade, and once the camper is set up on the inside, which takes about 20 min., I’m not about to move it! It’s hard to tell where the sun’s path will be when you arrive in the morning, or at noon. I’ve really been moving around a lot lately. I just came from 3 days at Concho where it was around 85 every day, then 2 days at Payson where it was in the low 80’s but one day I had a bunch of errands to run and when I got back, it was 101 degrees inside the camper! And me with no electricity so no real way to cool it down. UGH. I just don’t tolerate heat.

I moved to a little higher elevation in Pine, then a few days in Strawberry. MUCH nicer! 

Here’s the campfire ring at my Pine campsite. I thought it was very elaborate…much higher than the usual single ring of rocks.

DSCN7566

And here’s the view from my Pine campsite. It’s really just on the edge of a fairly ugly dirt clearing but there’s nice shade and a great wifi signal, and only a mile to town. (It is ½ mile S. of the Pine Trailhead, on the west side of Hwy. 260/87. GPS 34.36650 -1211.44060)  There are also a few small pullout sites and a vault toilet at the trailhead, and that’s probably where I would go next time.

DSCN7565

I am again on the hunt for a nice cheapie piece of property to call HOME. I’ve now been wandering for more than 2 ½ years. I looked at several places in eastern Apache County but nothing really appealed at all. So tomorrow I’m heading back to a different area to try again. I visited some lovely folks (Candace & Frank) who are friends of a friend of a friend (good ol’ Facebook)! And fell in love with their place and the general area. On my way back out from their house I saw a real estate sign on a parcel that’s heavily treed (pinon and cedar trees, only 20-25’ tall but nice and bushy).  That one is a little more than I am able to spend but I’m sure there are other parcels for sale around there. I am working with a realtor, Mike from Landmark Realty…he’s great! He has spent a good bit of time looking up the restrictive covenants for all the areas I’m interested in, to make sure RV’s are allowed!

The way Apache County works this is that you can’t really live full-time in an RV unless you are in an RV park or are holding a building permit for a home; then you can legally live in an RV on your property for up to a year, and you must have a septic system. But you can live in your RV for 6 months without a septic system, leave for two weeks and then come back for another 6 months, on and on ad infinitum. They consider that “camping”. You just have to go somewhere and dump your tanks. Since I don’t have any black or graywater tanks, for me it’s a matter of dumping my porta potty in a vault toilet somewhere. I probably will switch to a dry toilet/composting system. 

My friend Donna from Cottonwood came with her greyhound “Queenie” to camp for a few days., so I moved to a higher elevation campsite and one that’s more scenic. Queenie is the sweetest thing! (Well so is Donna) She’s a racetrack rescue who just recently had a front leg amputated due to cancer. She gets around pretty good! Donna has a Chalet model XL1930 A-frame camper that’s massive….it’s 6’ longer than mine, 6” wider and way taller, with a wet bath, double sinks, bigger fridge with freezer and high sidewalls so the kitchen counter height is really comfortable for cooking. And a queen-sized bed! Look at the difference between our two campers…we’re like Mutt and Jeff!

DSCN7569

We had a visitor yesterday morning…..a scruffy-looking young guy came to Donna’s camper and said he needed a jump-start for his car. She told him that her car was new and had a bunch of electronics that she didn’t want to chance messing up. (good answer, I thought!) She asked me if I’d do it and I said the same thing. We were both just leery of this guy, and for no good reason; he seemed like a perfectly nice guy. But….don’t they all?!  We both felt really bad about not being helpful but heck, we’re two unarmed old ladies!! When Donna went back to tell him I wouldn’t do it either, I put my shoes on, got out my trusty hatchet and had the phone on and dialed 9-1, all ready to punch in that last number and then run over and whack his head off. Or should I whack his head off first?? Of course he went away quietly and everything was fine, but you just can’t be too careful these days.  A little while later a car went by with a young couple in it and I stopped them and told them the situation and they said they’d help the guy. So now we don’t feel quite as guilty.

The ground here is very rocky!

DSCN7571

And here’s another pretty interesting fire ring, with wind deflectors.

DSCN7570

Wow! Maybe best pizza ever…we went to the Old County Inn in Pine yesterday for lunch. It was a long wait but their wood-fired pizza was amazing.

I am having a run of bad luck with hamburger. I buy grass-fed hamburger in a shrink-wrap package, costs between $6-7 a lb. but it keeps much better than the fresh-ground stuff in the grocery store, plus it doesn’t have that Pink Slime in it that most of the grocery stores add. I bought a package when I was in Flagstaff and a few days later I noticed the package was all blown up. Damn, rotten hamburger? It still had 6 days til the Sell By date!  I reluctantly threw it out, and a couple days later I mentioned it to Pat and he said it was probably perfectly good; sealed packages like that blow up like balloons from the elevation there!!   Well CRAP!  So I bought another pound, on sale for $5.99. I have no idea how this happened but several days later I found that package laying on the floor next to my bed!!  Obviously another throw-away. Sheesh!  Maybe it rolled out of the grocery bag? Roxie had not touched it. She rarely will pick up anything off the floor, no matter how yummy it might be. Princesses do not eat floor food!

Categories
Arizona Uncategorized

Flagstaff

DSCN7548

 

I spent a week near Flagstaff, on a free campsite in the Coconino National Forest off A-1 Mountain Road. It was great…only one mile from I-40 and about 5 miles to town. My site happened to have a lot of junk that had been jettisoned by some homeless guy.  If you remember my “ax-murderer” friend Pat from this spring? He was camped there and said that he could get the trash hauled away if I’d bag it up. It was pretty crazy; two bales of hay under a torn tent. There were all kinds of empty cans and bottles inside the tent, outside the tent, and seemingly “hidden caches” of them in the hay! And under the tent, also hidden in the hay, were three bulging pillowcases full of clothing.  So I spent part of a day getting that all cleaned up, and Pat’s rancher friend came and hauled it away. The hay was still there, but it looked so much better without the tent and all those cans & bottles. Oh, and about 100 cigarette butts and two whiskey bottles.  Here’s the pile after I finished:

DSCN7547
While I was there I had two really memorable meals with Pat….he cooked a delicious slab of pork ribs on his campfire, and a couple days later we had a turkey breast cooked over the fire that came out perfect…moist and juicy; oh so good! He’s a really good guy and not an ax-murderer type at all.  (I followed him way back into the woods to a campsite this spring when he was a total stranger, and thought to myself that for all I knew, I could be following an ax-murderer!! After all, I did meet him on a Facebook group!)

Pat told me about the Goodwill Outlet in town, so I stopped there this morning. Score! They bring all the stuff  that doesn’t sell from the regular Goodwill stores here. Everything is $1.29 a pound, and it’s all jumbled-up in huge bins. You have to paw throught it to see what’s there. I got 4 good rubber-backed bath rugs, a cushy fleece throw for Roxie, and a nice down-alterrnative pillow, all for $10.17! Those little rugs fit the space in front of my bed perfectly, and since I don’t want to spend money to wash a  $2 dirty rug in a separate washer, and I sure don’t want to wash dirty rugs with my clothes,I just toss them when they get really dirty.

I really loved the site but it was not good for Roxie. The ground was super-fine silt and all her white bits turned gray; plus there were little weeds and stickers that were gumming up her coat. So yesterday I took her to the self-serve dog wash in Flagstaff and bathed her for $15 (yikes!), and we left this morning for cleaner parts.

We only went a few miles; 9 miles down Lake Mary Road to the Marshall Lake road, then 1.2 miles back. (near the Lowell Observatory). We are in another part of the Coconino National Forest. Got a nice campsite (free, of course) well back from the road, with a few pine trees for shade. I looked out a little while ago and we were surrounded by cattle! Once it got dark they started making the most godawful noises…..I wondered if one was having a baby or was mad about something!  Once they quieted down, the coyotes started up!  And the next morning the camper started shaking violently!! I knew what it was…..I looked out and sure enough, a cow was scraching her butt on the corner of my camper! Go away, Cow!  When I opened the door and yelled at her, she hightailed it out of there. I guess that’s where the word “hightailed” came from, as it really was straight up in the air! Then I felt bad for scaring her so badly.

 

 

Categories
Arizona

New Camp at Clints Well

Today we moved up the mountain to Clints Well Campground. The elevation here is about 1500′ higher than Payson, so it’s correspondingly colder….like lows in the mid-20’s! I decided I could handle it; I really love it here and didn’t want to miss staying here. I was even resigned to having to drive about 30 miles to get cell and wifi signals! But I was very pleasantly surprised to have a good wifi signal here!! Verizon must have added a new tower since last April. Thank you, Verizon!!  Even the phone has a decent signal here, so it’s way better than Payson.

The Happy Jack post office is in Clints Well for some reason, and it’s the smallest post office in the U.S. It’s housed in a little metal storage building, about 10 x 16′.  I stopped to mail a card and they don’t even have a drop box for mail! I guess you have to go when they are open.

I was also very surprised to find the campground nearly full. There are only 7 or 8 sites here but I was here for two weeks in late April last year and never saw it this crowded. I got a good site with full sun in the afternoon, though I’m parked very close and parallel to the road. When someone leaves I might change sites.

I really love camping in the towering Ponderosa pines. We’re likely to have elk and deer visitors too.

DSCN7054
Our campsite at Clints Well Campground

If you are following other blogs by people who are in Arizona, have you noticed that they all are boasting pretty photos of desert flowers in bloom?  I haven’t had a site with pretty flowers yet!!  Back in Pine I went looking and only found two dandelion plants in bloom, and I don’t think they count. Sigh.

I’m very excited that after a lot of planning and scheming, I’m going to be able to meet up with my friend Jeanne later this month! She’ll be headed to AZ and I’ll be headed back to NC so we’re going to meet in New Mexico for 5 or 6 days and explore Taos, Santa Fe and Albuquerque together. I’ll have to break my rule and camp in a PAY campsite, but it’s just $10 a night and includes electric hookups, and is between Santa Fe and Taos. There are some nice free sites up near Taos but due to the elevation, they don’t open up until May and we are meeting up on April 20-26.  I started researching good restaurants and where to get the best ice cream, etc……the important stuff! It looks like almost all the restaurants are Southwest or Mexican food. Hmm. I’m not a fan but I may have to learn to like it. To make up for it, there’s a “Chocolate Trail” in Santa Fe that looks very very interesting! ALso Bandelier National Monument and a place called Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument. It’s filled with fantastic wind and water-sculpted rocks. I won’t say what *I* think they look like but they’re supposed to look like tents.

tent rocks

Thank you for using my Amazon link! Every order helps, no matter how small! Here’s the link:  https://www.amazon.com/?tag=litbitliv01-20

Categories
Arizona

Turn Back Around

This morning I thought of the Lucy Schwartz song “Turn Back Around”….the lyrics go:            I Turn, turn, turn, I turn back around,                                                                                                    And I’m eastern bound.

I’d been a little sad because things just weren’t working out for me to find cheap property in AZ, CO or NM. Oh, I could find cheap property, that wasn’t the problem, it was that all the cheap places also seem to come with sky-high crime rates! I was even offered some free property in Socorro County, NM but I checked all the towns in that county (they couldn’t remember what it was near) and both the violent and theft crime rates were in the 90’s out of 100! Apparently it’s a very poor county, with high unemployment rates. Well I’m just too old to deal with that kind of crap!

I have just been given a great opportunity to be a sort of minimal caretaker for some property back in Asheville, NC! My friends Cheryle & Jenni are moving to Washington state at the end of April and I am going to be camping under their huge carport to deter theft, and monitoring the pond levels, cleaning the pond filter, monitoring the chemicals in the swim spa, letting the yard guy know when to come, stuff like that. And also eating their strawberries, asparagus and blueberries!  I’ve posted photos from there several times; its kind of my “go to” place when I’m in NC.  If it doesn’t sell right away, the average high in July is 83 and with the roof overhead and electricity to run the A/C, I should be fine.

So I sort of feel like I’m starting over from scratch, going back to Asheville, where I started out! I lived in that area for 35 years before moving to Ecuador. If the house sells quickly I’ll head back up to northern Michigan for the summer and re-think the whole plan. Maybe I could grow to like Florida for winter??? It woudn’t be too bad a drive to bounce between Michigan and Florida twice a year.

On the home front, I’m still loving this campsite in Pine, AZ! I haven’t left the campsite since I got here on Friday afternoon but will need to go out and get a few groceries in a few more days. There’s a good bit of daytime traffic from people on ATV’s here but it’s very quiet at night, and the weather has been a perfect 74-75 degrees every day.  I probably won’t be heading back to NC until early April so I’ll need to make at least one more move before I go, maybe only 20 miles to Clints Well. I sure do love this area of the state, and wish I could live here, but the property costs are sky high..

Categories
Arizona Uncategorized

Goodbye Sedona; Hello Clints Well!

It’s getting hot here in Sedona/Cottonwood….81 today and tomorrow, ugh! Funny how it kind of skipped the 70’s and went directly from the high 60’s to low 80’s. Tomorrow I’m getting the camper brakes repaired (again?) and heading to Clints Well, which is just about 45 min. away but much higher elevation. There it’ll be back to the high 60’s. If i can, I might move around but stay in that general area for a while.

I got the new alternator yesterday at Phillips Auto Service in Cottonwood. Good guys. This one comes with a 36 month, 36000 mile nationwide warranty. If it fails, I can get a new one from any Napa Auto Parts. But of course my stuff never fails while under warranty, LOL.

We had a really pretty sunset last night. They’ve been not so good because the skies were cloudless.

DSCN7023

I had trouble getting to sleep last night; I was awake til around 2 a.m. Then at 6 a.m. Princess Roxie woke me and insisted I get up and take her out for Her Royal Pee. Then again at 7:15 for Her Royal Poop. Ugh!  Sometimes it’s tough being owned by a princess. I bet I’ll sleep tonight.

I was kind of glad I got up at 7:15 though, because I got to see a couple more hot air balloons pretty close. I got this great shot of one coming down behind the camper

Balloon camper

Here’s Roxie’s favorite spot, under the shady tree. Mine too! I got a nice new lawn chair that doesn’t require kung fu training to fold up.  My old Coleman chair is very comfy but very hard to fold…the best way is to throw it on it’s back to get it started! It’s starting to fall apart though, it’s about 5 years old and used a lot.

Categories
Uncategorized

It’s a balloon kind of morning!

WOW! This morning when I took Roxie out, I saw 4 hot air balloons; always a really cool sight, and it happens almost daily here. A little while later I heard that distinctive sound of the propane burner and I looked out…..there was a balloon landing about 50′ from the camper! How cool is that! The sun of course was coming from the wrong direction but I snapped a bunch of photos out the door of the camper. I have never seen a hot air balloon up that close…..they are massive!! I wondered if it would collapse onto the camper but there’s a rope hanging down so someone can direct where it falls.  About five minutes later, another balloon landed right next to the first! WOW!

DSCN7002

DSCN6994
Wow, compare the size of the people to the size of the balloon! That thing is humungous! 

DSCN6996

DSCN7005DSCN7008

DSCN6999
He’s walking the rope out to guide where the balloon falls.
DSCN7011
TWO balloons!

DSCN7014

Yesterday I had a not-so-nice experience so today’s balloons were extra uplifting. The little red battery icon was lit up on my car’s dashboard, so I took the car to a repair place that my friend Donna recommended (she lives here in Cottonwood). They said it’s the alternator. You may remember that just last May I broke down in Gallup, NM and had to get an alternator and battery……yeah. The guy at this place said that they don’t use that brand of rebuilt alternator because they don’t hold up well. He’s quoted $427 to put in a new alternator. That’s bad news but what makes me feel worse is that obviously Pep Boys in Gallup ripped me off…I paid around $800 for a rebuilt alternator and battery that only lasted nine months!!  Grrrrr.  I am stuck here at camp until my Wednesday afternoon appointment. I checked the battery this morning and it’s pretty dead; so glad I have the solar panel to charge it up!

Ahhh…breathe in, breathe out, shake it off…..here’s the sunrise from a couple days ago.

DSCN6991

The sunsets have not been really great because there haven’t been many clouds in the evenings. It’s been very pleasant, near 70 degrees during the day, but with enough of a breeze that it’s not quite warm enough to sit outside for very long.   Last night the low here was 35 and Thursday and Friday’s highs are supposed to be 80. What a huge difference a few days make! I’m going to be miserable in 80 degrees, but I have to hang around here until Friday when I take the camper back to get the brakes checked again.Something is still wrong; they’re still not working. Boy this month is sure a big money pit! $250 for the camper repairs already, plus $427 for the alternator, and who knows how much more to get the brakes fixed! Ouch. I seem destined to not ever have any savings.

Thank you so much for using my Amazon link for your purchases! It doesn’t cost you any extra, and I get a little percentage based on number of items sold and amount spent. Please think of me before you place an order!  Even small purchases help to raise the percentage.       Here’s the link:  https://www.amazon.com/?tag=litbitliv01-20

Categories
Arizona

Rain Rain Go Away!

On Friday we moved from Concho back to the national forest land between Cottonwood and Sedona. We got a GREAT site with a shade tree, and way far back from the dusty road with all it’s traffic.  Deb got a lot of things fixed on her camper (to the tune of nearly  $900) by A-1 RV Service in Camp Verde; really good guys who do great work. Those are the same guys who fixed my fridge and brakes. Now her old battery is working great, and she even has a new battery monitor inside the camper so she can easily see how it’s doing. It was a shorted-out awning motor that was causing her batteries to go dead all the time. (The new motor cost $300!)

dscn6972

All was well….enjoying the campsite….then it started to rain. Uck! After an all-day rain yesterday, continuing on into today, our campsite is a muddy mess! And it’s the kind that builds up on your shoes until you’re lifting 10# of mud with each step. I’m so glad I have my imitation Crocs with me! Regular shoes would be ruined. Princess Roxie kept bugging me to take her out this morning but I didn’t want to get all muddy again so I put the leash on her and forced her out the door while I stood safely in the doorway. She landed in the mud and very gracefully somehow twisted around and leaped back into the camper without taking another step! Here’s her footprints…..the ONLY doggy footprints!  I don’t know how she managed that trick. Roxie HATES getting her feet wet!

dscn6974

The next time she asked to go out I knew she REALLY must have to go, but I couldn’t even drag her out the door. It’s amazing how strong a 10# dog can be. So I put on my yucky shoes and carried  her over to a grassy area so she could do her business, then carried her back to the camper. I found a tent state and scraped 1/2″ of goo off my shoes before I went back inside. Here are my footprints:

dscn6975

I think it’ll be a few days before either of us will be able to drive out of here! Now I’m not so glad we got this campsite wayyyy back from the road!  I have Things To Do, too…I’m selling my half of the 40 acres in Alaska back to the other co-owner and I needed to go print the Quitclaim Deed and get it notarized. Sigh. Maybe tomorrow?

 

I’ve been trying to make some summer plans. You know me; I love making plans, even if they don’t work out in the end. I’ve just about given up on finding cheap land in a place that’s cool in summer, where it’s also legal to live in a camper. All those places have terrible crime ratings! I guess cheap land attracts that sort of people?? Anyway, we were thinking of spending the summer around Flagstaff where it’s nice and cool, but they have that Southwest monsoon thing going on….heavy rains every afternoon all summer. And after this experience, I’m not interested in having rain every day. So now I’m thinking to maybe go on up to southeastern Wyoming; the Medicine Bow National Forest is one of my very favorite places and the mountains are beautiful and cool, plus it’s north of the monsoon territory.  Anyone have any other good suggestions of where to spend the summer where it’s cool and fairly dry? (with lots of free camping too, of course)

Categories
Arizona

Concho

Wednesday I had an appointment at A-1 RV Service Center in Camp  Verde. I dropped the camper off and then went to PetSmart in Sedona to get some food for Roxie, and some other small errands. I had to pick up my lawn chair from Donna, as I’d left it at the rally site. They had my camper all done by 1:00 and everything now works! They said the fridge propane orifice was filled with bits of rust. That makes me soooo mad, as I paid a highly recommended RV guy in Asheville $75 to clean the propane fridge system just 3 months ago. If he’d done the job right, there would not be a buildup of rusty junk now! At any rate, the fridge works just fine now.  They also fixed the camper brakes; the wires to the magnet on one side were completely torn in half! I have NO idea how that could happen. They checked the frame welds, rotated the tires and checked out the Fantastic Vent, which had suddenly started running slow and was obviously hitting on something. Guess what….there was a dead bumblebee and a beetle in there, and the blades were hitting on them! Crazy.

So $250 later I headed to Holbrook and met up with Deb again at Petrified Forest National Park. There’s no camping inside the park but at the south end there’s free camping at Crystal Forest Gift Shop, which provides covered picnic tables and use of their dumpster, plus the restroom while the shop is open. Across the road is Petrified Forest Museum, where you can get a campsite with picnic table and electricity (no water) for $11 a night. Deb stayed on the electric side and I was at the free side. The winds were around 25 mph with gusts up to 40 so I was careful to park heading into the wind and stayed hooked up to the car for more stability, and there was surprisingly not much buffeting. Apparently the winds seldom calm down around there! The gift shop guy said they get a few good days. We decided to skip going through the park, as we’d both done it before. We went into Holbrook and had breakfast at Joe & Aggie’s Cafe on Rt. 66. It’s been in existence since 1943 and is a little run-down but the breakfast was really good!

Then we headed to Concho to check out my new property & see if I could get my camper onto it. I was embarrassed that we had to go right back past where we’d camped….a 40 mile round trip for breakfast! And we didn’t really have to haul the campers to town and back, either. Oops. We are camped at Concho Lake Park which is a pretty nice boondocking site with a porta-john and garbage cans, with sites all over in the pinon trees. Still very windy here too so the trees help block the breeze. I guess it’s Open Range here as we have to watch out for giant cow flops. I rearranged my passenger seat and moved some of the bigger rocks so Deb could fit in, and we drove out to the property.

Along the way we met up with some of the “neighbors” from about 3 miles away I think. They were on our tail the whole way so I pulled over to let them by, but they didn’t want to get past, they wanted to know what we were doing out there. They had just had their 8×8 wooden storage building stolen a few days ago!! So we got an earful about the area, and none of it sounded good. Lots of theft unless you stay on your property 24/7 to guard everything, the nearest neighbor is a drunk who steals things, the police don’t come out there. And the guy in that car had wild-looking eyes; Deb thought he was high on something, either meth or cocaine!  Apparently the wind blows pretty constantly there too. They said there was about two months in summer when the winds die down. Once we got to the property and walked around, it looked like there was really nowhere quite level to put the camper and it would require some bulldozing to make a level pad for the camper and for my future larger camper.  And it was very very windy, just like the first time I was there.

I decided perhaps this was not the place for me. I was not happy to hear it was an area where people would steal something as large as a storage shed, and I don’t think I could live with that constant wind.  So I’m not buying it after all. The seller was very gracious about it and of course I forfeited the two $77 payments I already had made but that’s OK, I think I dodged a bullet. Gee, I never knew there were places that had constant high winds like that!

So I’m “homeless” again. And very sad about it. I wanted to have a garden, and a home for my rocks. I probably picked up an additional 50# of rocks when I was in Superior, thinking I’d be dumping them off on the property! And I love them and don’t want to jettison them.  I was so looking forward to eventually getting a larger camper to live in. Oh well. I will continue to try and save money in case another promising homesite comes along. The problem is that Apache County is one of the few in AZ that allows you to live in a camper. And I think all of Apache County is also a huge wind tunnel! There are also not that many places in AZ that don’t have those really high sumertime temps. Flagstaff is great in summer but has a really harsh winter…..Prescott has perfect weather but property is quite pricey.  Somewhere out there is a home for us, I just know it!

 

Categories
Arizona

Picketpost Mountain

dscn6855

WOW, isn’t that impressive?!  That was the sunrise on my last day in Buckeye. Normally I don’t like being awake that early, but this was sure worth it.  Fire in the sky!

Yesterday we moved to Picketpost Mountain, near Superior. I had planned to go to Oak Flat Campground but heard it was closed, so the other alternative was a place called Picketpost, in the Tonto National Forest. Strangely enough, just the other day a guy on one of my Facebook groups posted that he was at Picketpost and told me where he was. Well Hwy. 60 is under construction and I couldn’t find the right road, so I continued on to town and PM’d him about it. He said he’d meet me at Circle K and lead me in. Great! Then after we’d gone a mile or so back up this tiny dirt road into Nowhere, I started thinking perhaps I’d done a bad thing….I’M FOLLOWING SOME GUY I MET ON THE INTERNET INTO THE WILDERNESS!!!  He could be an ax murderer!!  Not to worry, he’s perfectly nice. (Aren’t they all?)  It’s no different from some stranger walking by and coming up to the campsite to chat. I’m not camped anywhere near him; he way farther up the road. And I’ve sent his name, link to his Facebook page and my exact GPS position to my “watchdog” Patricia, LOL. Really, I’m not a bit worried. He’s got a black lab, and I don’t think ax murderers ever have dogs. Pretty sure.

It’s NICE here! Trees and bushes!! And a few cactus. This saquaro cactus looks like it’s a child hugging it’s mommy, doesn’t it?

hugging-cactus

It’s only about 5 miles from Superior here, and I’m getting excellent Verizon and ATT signals. There definitely are coyotes around though; I’ve heard them singing a couple times already, and they didn’t sound that far away. I’ll have to keep a close eye on Princess Roxie.

So here’s my campsite. I even have a nice palo verde shade tree! I hope I’ve positioned the camper right, so I’ll get the shade when I need it.

dscn6862

I wonder if that is Picketpost Mountain in the background?

dscn6858

dscn6859

dscn6860

The other day I needed to get something from the food bin under my bed, and needed to move Roxie. So I tossed her up on the bed, and she immediately laid down and was perfectly comfortable. And I remembered that she always does that. So I can only conclude that she doesn’t like being on the bed with ME. Hmmmph.

dscn6848

 

 

Categories
Arizona

Sunny Days in Buckeye

We’ve been having amazing weather, and according to the forecast, it’ll be about the same for the next 10 days!  Mid-70’s during the day and cool nights. It’s been so warm, I’ve had to rig up my shade cloth over the big side window.

dscn6840

It’s just clipped to the edges of the roof at the top, and then bungied in three places to an adjustable painter’s pole at the bottom. The pole is stuck through the legs of my stepstool and zip-tied in place. The stepstool keeps the cloth from laying right against the glass, and lets some breeze through. It also comes down far enough to shade the fridge vents, not that the fridge is working right now, but someday.

dscn6841

dscn6842

Yesterday I finally did the laundry! I’ve been putting it off for a couple weeks! HATE doing laundry in a laundromat. The dryers there were awful; I kept putting more and more quarters in and they never really got very hot. I finally gave up and brought home my warm, wet clothes. I couldn’t find my little rope so I had to use an electrical extension cord. I zip-tied it to the supports for the picnic table shelters. (What would this world be like without zip-ties???)  Not all of it would fit so I also draped things over the sides of Roxie’s exercise pen, all over the inside of the car and all over the inside of the camper. Thank goodness for the Arizona-quick-dry sunshine!  I guess we looked like a yard sale was going on.

dscn6838

As I was getting out of the car at the laundromat, a man in the truck next to me said “Do you have a dog?” I said yes, and he said he’d bought some rawhide treats that his dog didn’t like, and if mine didn’t like them either, to just throw them away. Well I took them just to be polite, but rawhide certainly doesn’t pass Princess Roxie’s lips!  I don’t know why; I asked him what kind of dog he had and he said “English Cocker”. What??!!  I said “I used to breed and show them!”  So he got her out; sweet little blue roan with an undocked tail wagging madly. She was a field-bred from breeders in Vancouver, BC.  How crazy is that; there are not that many English Cockers out there!  Behind me in the car, Roxie was barking like crazy and he asked me what kind I had. I said “Havanese” and he shook his head. “Little barky kind”, I said, and he nodded and smiled.

I made really good beef vegetable soup for dinner but now I’m worrying about finding something big enough to put the leftovers in, and then finding space in the fridge. It’s really hard to make a small batch of soup.

OH! I almost forgot….I’ve been WALKING!  Roxie and I go out 3 or 4 times a day and walk 1/8 mile up the road and back. So most of the time we do a mile a day! Wow, not so very long ago that would have been impossible. My knee doesn’t even hurt! Sometimes my hips complain about the time we get back to camp though. (It’s always something, right?!)

The sunsets haven’t been that great lately; I think because there are so few clouds in the cky, there’s nothing there to reflect the colors.  I was actually awake at sunrise this morning and was all set to take a photo but it wasn’t very colorful either. Here’s tonight’s sunset anyway. I’ve been enjoying the coyote concerts almost every night.

dscn6846

 

 

 

Categories
Arizona

Musings on a Sunny Day

It’s a beautiful sunny day in Buckeye, Arizona! And the weather forecast says there are 9 more sunny days to come!! That’s reason to celebrate right there….Life Is Good. It’s been a very different winter so far; much more rain and overcast skies than last year. When they say “rain” though, it usually means about 20 drops at a time but the other day it was a real gully-washer all day off and on, and the washes were running strong. Boy the desert plants are getting green quickly!

dscn6837

I’ve still been getting plenty of light on the solar panel to serve my meager needs, in fact I’ve got it bungied to the spare tire on the back of the camper and I don’t move it, so it’s only getting sun about 4 hours a day. It’s still enough. It’s gotten a bit cold at night (33 degrees last night) but the Wave 3 heater has been doing a great job of keeping us warm and cozy.

Neighbors have been coming and going, most staying only a night or two. If you are old enough to remember the sitcom “Bewitched”, remember the cranky neighbor lady who was constantly spying through her curtains at Samantha?  That’s who I’ve become, to my shame. Yep, I’m a nosy old witch. I find myself watching everyone that goes by. I’ve resisted getting out the binoculars but…..I want to!  I really prefer being all by myself back here, and then I don’t have to worry about Roxie barking too much, or getting fully dressed to take her for a little walk.  On the other hand, if I happen to have a heart attack or something, it’d be nice to have a neighbor within screeching distance.

I love hearing the coyotes yipping and howling at night! And it reminds me to be vigilant with Roxie so she doesn’t end up being a coyote snack.  My little packrat that lives under the picnic slab has been feathering his/her nest with bits of a throw rug that blew into Roxie’s exercise pen. In hindsight, I should have picked it up right away and not left it there for 3 days. Oh and I don’t have any critters in the car; false alarm. I kept a mousetrap in the car for 3 nights and didn’t catch anything, and then when i cleaned off the floor with a whisk broom, I noticed that what I thought were critter poops were actually some kind of empty husk or hull. I have no idea how they got under the floor mat, but I’m glad! I’ve gotten out my solar string lights and put them on the ground under the car’s engine to discourage pack rats, which love to chew wiring. They don’t stay lit all night but I’m hoping the critters don’t “work” all night either.

Thank you so much for using my PayPalMe link and my link to purchase your Amazon goodies! You guys rock! And it doesn’t cost you any more than buying through the regular Amazon URL.  Here’s the Amazon Associates link:                               https://www.amazon.com/?tag=litbitliv01-20

 

 

 

Categories
Arizona

After Christmas

Now that Christmas is past, I’m back to regular chores. I mailed some solar gadgets to a friend who’s just setting up her new system and went over toBlythe, California to get some groceries. I didn’t know that in California you have to bring your own grocery bags or else pay for them! I’ll try to remember.

I finally got around to doing laundry today too….I’ve been putting it off and putting it off, washing out a few undies every few days. The laundromat in Ehrenberg is very cheap…it cost only $3.50 to wash & dry two loads of clothes! And I forgot (again) to put any fabric softener in the dryer. I don’t like to use dryer sheets; I don’t want whatever those chemical are, all over my clothes & touching my skin. But here in the desert you almost have to. And since I didn’t, I’ve got enough static electricity in just my clean underpants alone to power this camper for a full day, if only I could harness it! Hate when that happens, don’t you?

While I was out I called Wal-Mart Pharmacy. On the 23rd I called to have 3 prescriptions refilled and sent to me at the Enrenberg Post Office (General Delivery). On the phone we wet over each one and the strength, etc. I looked on line and it looked as though only one of them was ordered. Sure enough, not only was just the one ordered, but the woman said they were waiting for payment before they shipped it. (A whole $.83) I said “You have my credit card, right?” and she read off the last 4 numbers. So what’s the problem here??  She said she would TRY to get it sent out tomorrow.  I guess I’m going to have to get the others ordered for pickup at the nearest Wal-Mart, which is 40 miles away!!!  An 80 miles drive just because people are stupid.

Other than those exciting things, we are just hanging out here, enjoying the sunny weather and being lazy. One day soon we’re going to go to Cibola Wildlife Reserve which is on the California side of the Colorado River but not too far from here, and I have orders to check out a campground near Blythe that my friends are interested in for next winter. I have to find them the best site……oh dear, the pressure’s on!

There was a really cute sign in the laundromat that said “Free hair washing sink”! Wish I’d known that. Then there was another sign that said “Washing dogs and kids, special today $139.00”!!   I took a picture of it with my phone but it refused to email it to my laptop. It always does that.

Oh it looks like the computer is in a good mood today and is going to let me post a few photos!

dscn6809

 

dscn6811