Sunday, October 26, 2014

Lake Havasu and the London Bridge...

We left Vegas and drove 175 miles south to Lake Havasu City, Arizona...home of the London Bridge.
German Bullet Holes
The London Bridge was constructed in 1831 and spanned the Thanes River until 1967 when it was dismantled.  An American, Robert McCulloch who had just founded Lake Havasu, a community in the Arizona desert, bought the bridge at an auction and had it shipped over in numbered pieces.  It was reconstructed over a steel structure and was completed in 1971.  Some of the stones are reported to have German bullet holes from World War 2.

We spent a few quiet days relaxing at Crazy Horse RV Park in Lake Havasu City.  It's a large park with about 600 campsites, They are gravel and reasonably level.  We stayed in a pull through with full hook-ups, including cable, on the upper level, near the front of the park.  There are many water and electric sites on a lower level that are waterfront, as well as a marina. The one thing we didn't like is they put a sticker type parking pass on both a truck window and fifth wheel window.  They did not come off easily.

We visited the London Bridge and the small village constructed around it...there are a few shops but village looks like it is deteriorating.  I stopped at one of the shops and was trying on hats...forgot I had my reading glasses pushed up on my head until I missed them later on.  They were my favorite pair!

I have been tired of desert landscape for some time so it was nice to be near a large body of sparkling blue water.

Next stop...Sedona and the Grand Canyon!

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Viva Las Vegas!

At The Blue Man Theater
Everyone needs to see Las Vegas at least once.  It took me many years to get here, but I made it!

We spent our first night on the road at Newberry Mountain RV Park and Motel in Newberry Springs, CA, a tiny desert town on old Route 66...population 2500...with an average summer temperature of 107 degrees F.  The campground is flat, wide open and gravel with a couple of ponds.  It makes for an easy overnight stop.  It is right up the road from the Bagdad Cafe.  It is also the first place we have had to change sites due to electrical issues.  We weren't getting enough voltage and our surge protector kept shutting off the power every time I turned the A/C on.  We moved to another site and had no problems.

The next morning we finished our drive to Vegas and checked in at the Las Vegas RV Resort.  It's a large paved resort with typical desert landscape.  Maggie didn't care for it as there was nary a blade of grass in the place...she doesn't like using gravel as her bathroom!  It is a clean, well-run RV Park with all amenities except cable...and over the air TV reception was awful.  It is only a few miles to the Las Vegas Strip and they are currently offering sites at $29 a night.  We would stay there again.

I'm not into gambling but I had to try the famed slot machines. We lost $25 and I gave it up.  I get no thrill from the remote possibility of winning big...just prefer to get something for my money.

Now, the glitz, glamour, and hustle bustle of the city is something else entirely.  I love it! Our first day there, we drove up and down the strip numerous times and never did find a place to park.  I took lots of photos through the windshield, then we headed back towards the RV park and partook of a Las Vegas buffet at Sam's Town.  It was pretty good for the price....which was about half what the buffets in the Strip are.

The next day we had better luck finding a place to park our monster truck.  I headed to New York, New York and took in the sights.  We passed the Nine Fine Irishmen Pub with outdoor tables and stopped in for a late lunch.  It was good, overpriced and an ideal spot for people watching.  Watching Vegas slowly light up as the sun goes down is a sight to see.

Statue of Liberty made entirely out of chocolate

We originally planned just a couple of days in Vegas, but I couldn't leave without seeing a Vegas show, so we extended our stay and I began my search for tickets.  We settled on the Blue Man Group at the Monte Carlo.  I was unfamiliar with them, but we'd heard it was a good show.  It was an excellent decision...the show was awesome!  The reviews all said it is impossible to describe and they are right.

Lots of energy, audience participation, almost mime-like vignettes, music played on all kinds of crazy instruments, colorful, funny, almost no dialogue which is ideal for me with my hearing loss.  Spontaneous...some people walked in late...suddenly the screen on stage popped up with with a flashing headline...late-comers... and video of them as the spotlight followed them to their seats. They make fun of many things but it's appropriate for all ages.  You leave the theater exhilarated.  Can you tell we loved it? Highly recommend you see it if you get the chance!

I won't return to Vegas to gamble, but I will return...

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Our First Anniversary and Saying Goodbye to Family...

I've let way too much time go since my last post...sometimes living life gets in the way of writing about it!

We got our new black tank installed the weekend of October 4th.  It took all day Friday and part of Saturday morning. It was a smelly job, the old tank was gross, and it took until Monday before the odor dissipated.  Total cost was about $1200. Tank, fittings and shipping were about $300 and labor was $900.  You couldn't pay either of us enough to do that job!  Thanks, Dave.

If anyone out there needs a good, honest Mobile RV Tech in the Vacaville/Solano County area, Dave Gelineau at Dave's Mobile Home & RV Repair is the one to call.  Message me in the comments for his number.

October 6th brought our first wedding anniversary.  A year ago, on Wrightsville Beach, under the Oceanic Pier,with sand between our toes, we got married.   It's hard to believe it's already been a year, yet it's been such a full year it sometimes feels that was so long ago.  We celebrated with dinner at Cattleman' old favorite of Jack's.

Our repairs done, it was time to leave Vacaville and hit the road.  We had a goodbye dinner at Chevy's Fresh Mex with Jack, Candice, Chanoa, Sienna, Stacey and Brian...Kayla had to cheer and couldn't make it :( so we had a goodbye phone call with her.

A few days before we left, we took a day trip with Robyn and Mel to Old Sacramento. We wandered around town, bought salt water taffy for us, t-shirts for Katie and Jackson, and had lunch and Joe's Crab Shack.   Then, the night before our departure, we had one last backyard BBQ at Melvin and Robyn''s.  We really enjoyed being close to everyone for two Robyn said, we could get used to this.

We miss you all already and are looking forward to spending the holidays with you next year!

We said tearful goodbyes and headed south to Fresno, CA, where we visited Jack's sister Mardell, brother Terry and brother-in-law Bart.  We had a great, all too short visit...spaghetti dinner at Mardell's - a cook-out at Brandon and Michelle's, her son and daughter-in-law - dinner at Kylie's, Mardell's daughter, and Sunday Brunch with Mardell and Bart at Mimi's Cafe.  For some reason...I forgot to take any pictures!

We stayed at Blackstone North RV Park in Fresno.  The sites are paved and level, satellite TV was only so-so, picnic tables were old and cracked, but it was too hot to sit out anyway.  Most of the sites are a good size, but we got the last available site and it was a tiny back-in.  Next time we'll reserve more in advance.  We did meet some nice neighbors.  Jim and Barb were right behind us in their new 2015 Montana. They are full timers, originally from Placerville, CA.  We toured each other's places and they got some decorating idea from us.  Before we left, they had already bought Smart Tiles for their kitchen backsplash!

Melvin and Robyn make very cool lights out of wine bottles and, while we were still in Vacaville, they gave us a beautiful one.  I love the label which says "Por Que, No"  Why Not?  As it happens, we have been carting around two bottles from Richard Childress Winery...Jack liked them because of the racing connection and checkered flag label. They were old enough that the wine was no longer drinkable, so...Robyn and Mel turned them into lights too!  I love them!  Mardell loved the Childress bottles, so we gave her one before we left.  We still have one Childress and my Why Not bottle...don't they look pretty? 

We said some more sad goodbyes in Fresno and hit the road in mid-October.  Next stop...Vegas!