Friday, October 30, 2015

A hike in Usery is good for my soul

After a week of classes and working on computer competencies, I was ready for a much needed hike. Usery County Park is nearby. The temps are much better so a noon start was fine for a hike. Also, there weren't many people out there.
I like my job but the sitting through orientation is wearing and I don't behave as well as I  probably should. I find myself pacing and trying to listen. I closed my eyes for a bit to listen to a program on the computer today. When I opened them, the test was blinking. I guess I missed the lesson. Good thing there is a back arrow. 

There was such a nice breeze while we were walking and the clouds would drift over and cool us. My soul felt so much better.

The jumping chollas had a funky fruit hanging from them.

We had the worse hard mattress. Mike had tried a comfort foam and it was too soft. So we ordered one and it just right. It came rolled up in a box and once it rolled out and expanded it was just the right size.

One day last week, we took a bike ride from Fountain Hills to Rio Verde. The road has rolling hills which were good for a our legs after some time off the bikes.

After the ride, we stopped at the Euro Café and had a "mean" calzone and salad with a beer and watched the fountain go off a few times. It is set to erupt every hour for 15 minutes.

Lots of nice sculptures in Fountain Hills. We don't usually stop as we drive to McDowell Regional Park. Glad we did this time.

Looks like someone broke into this tortoise's house and ate him. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Time with the family in Tucson

Catalina State Park in Oro Valley northeast of Tucson is a favorite place of ours along with the hike to Romero pools. It is 5.5 miles out and back with a treat of a stream and pools to cool down in. We skipped this hike until it cools down a bit more. Deb hates rattlesnakes.

In the eastern foothills of the Santa Catalina mountain range, Sabino Canyon is a world of natural beauty. Stunning vistas, the freshness of the morning air, the tranquility of running creek water, and the rugged backdrop of Thimble Peak make this place so unique. There is a tram that people can ride and see the scenery but we chose to walk the 6 miles.

There is a beautiful visitors center which was nice for a cool down after our hike. The sun gets toasty even though the temps were in the 70s with a nice breeze.

When I lived near here while working at the medical center, we would walk here often and see roadrunners and turtles many times.

The rains have been pretty heavy since we have been here so the stream from Mt Lemmon had a pretty good flow. Mike was pondering while watching the fish.

There are 9 nine stream crossings

Love those desert sunsets.

On the driveway to my sister's house, I stepped over a rattle snake and didn't realize it until Mike told me.

I appreciated the clouds. As they rolled in the crowds thinned out for a pleasant walk.

The reason for our visit to Tucson this time was a celebration of my niece's wedding
My sisters Sandy and Patty at the rehearsal dinner. Lyndsey behind the camera. It was fun to catch up with everyone. Sunday after the wedding there was a BBQ and three nice days of visiting and telling stories. Driving home after everything, Mike noticed I was quiet. I was just lost in my thoughts of how time passes so quickly. It was 28 years ago that we were attending Sandy and Ihor's wedding and our children were the flower girls and ring bearer.

Kim was a beautiful bride. At the reception, we stood outside and watched the lightening show all across the night sky.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Light rail to Phoenix

When we arrive in a new city, we like to take the public transportation or hop on hop off buses to get a feel for the area. The light rail was not too far and saved us from much driving. $4 pass for all day including buses and $2 for seniors. Not a bad deal since parking was free.

It has been nice to have yoga classes and a nice gym to use while we are here.
I liked how the buildings reflected in the downtown. When we were riding into the city, many neighborhoods reminded me of driving in Mexico and not in a quaint way.

We found that college students eat well and decided to look for a place for brunch near the ASU campus and Sun Devils Stadium. We found Snooze that seemed to have a good vibe and breakfast tacos. Score!

It was a good way to spend the morning since the temps are pretty warm to be outside for long other than in the swimming pool. We found some places that we will return to and check out further. Ready for the return ride home.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Mesa, AZ What were we thinking?

The temp was 104 degrees when we got here and went up to 107 over the next few days. This is not the norm in October but what is normal anymore? We had gone a lot of miles and needed a good rest. After getting into our spot, Mike plugged us in to get the AC going and nothing happened. The fix it men were here in no time and fixed up our 30 amp. The AC was up and running and running...  It was good to catch up with some friends that we hadn't seen in quite a while and get settled in. We have never stayed  in a 55+ community but decided to give it a shot . The last time I worked at the hospital here, we stayed in a beautiful apartment complex provided by the hospital. But we didn't have much of a chance to get to know people. It looks like there is going to be quite a bit to do here. We have already met several nice couples.

Becoming full time RVers has been a learning experience for us. Sometimes, it can be overwhelming because it such a change. We are figuring it out as we go even though I was traveling nurse for many years. This is different and we like it.

The music in the courtyard is a hoot.
We have been getting up early to ride our bikes and playing pickleball in the evenings.
As much as we enjoy the Superstition Mountains, I guess we will wait until it gets cooler to go for a hike.

Cuenca, Ecuador

An Expat Destination The morning after returning to Quito we boarded an hour-long flight to Cuenca. Driving up the winding roads would have ...