Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 the first six months

 We closed out 2010 in Bushnell FL with the escapees at Sumter Oaks, and then we headed south looking for warmer weather. We wound up in Key West FL enjoying the beautiful sunsets and a little warmer weather. It just wasn't the 70's that we seek, but we waited a few days and the 70's did show up.

Jim and Nancy came down and visited us and this little iguana tried its best to climb up Jim's leg. I don't think Jim had moved that fast in many years.

We did some kayaking and found some nice shells.

We soon moved back to Sumter Oaks, and I flew back to KY for my doctor appointment. While I was gone some lady rear-ended Marcia in the jeep. We took the jeep to wachula to have it repaired.

We found a buyer for the Santara, a nice couple we had met in Wachula, they had spent the winter in a small class C so moving into the Santara was a huge move forward for them, and it relieved us from the burden of having two motor homes.

My doctor appointment took us back to KY a lot earlier than we wanted to be there, but it did give us added time to spend with family.

I bought some " old school " wheels for the jeep and they really looked good, but Wal-Mart scratched them up when they installed them wrong so wal-mart paid me for those wheels and I bought some that were more durable.

Dad had been pretty sick all winter so it was really good that we were able to be there and able to spend time with him before he went to be with mom in heaven.

Another plus was we started volunteering for the Cumberland Gap National Historical Park. Did you know

Kentucky was once called Kaintuck?

We even got uniforms.

And a secluded place to call home for a couple months.

We got to see "little Shit" (as dad called Braydon).

We were among many volunteers at the park.

While we were there we saw an unusual flood in June. Middlesboro was hit pretty hard by some heavy rains and many of the business in Middlesboro were flooded along with many homes.

We had several marsh-mellow roasts, the kids really enjoyed them.

Someone else liked them too.

The sad part of the first six months was dad passed away, and I really miss calling him and letting him know where we are parked at now. Going "home" (back to Middlesboro) will never be the same, and I might not ever return except Scott, Corey and Jenifer, and the grand babies are there, and it is so close to Nellies.

That is the short version of the first six months of 2011, the next six months, after leaving Middlesboro, will follow, (soon I hope)...

Friday, December 30, 2011

Wheeling in Salome

Yesterday we left the conveniences of the big city to enjoy the seclusion of Salome. The area around Salome is a four wheelers haven with thousands of miles of trails. I gave up the four wheelers years ago, something about pain and back caused our quad to sit in the garage for several years before we gave it away.

But my loving wife loves her jeeps, and I found out the jeeps will go almost any where a quad will, and if the jeep won't make it I don't really need to go there.

She did ask me several times today, "are you going down there"? A horse could have done a better job as transportation, but a horse needs too much attention, with the jeep its just tires, gas and oil, and we can pull the jeep behind the rv.

We traversed across many miles of desert enjoying the views all the way, and we are always looking for that shiny stuff in the washes.

I have found that I enjoy looking for the best way to get across the wash in the desert, than watching for the fool crossing into my lane in the cities.

I spotted this definite change in the rocks so I wanted to see why.

It was the tailing's of an old mine shaft. I have always wandered how the prospectors chose an area to look for their gold. You can find claims all over, but how do or did they know where to dig?

We didn't do anything that was too rough, although I wish the quads would have made the paths a little wider so I didn't have to worry so much about scratching the jeep.

 We made it back to the rv resort with no problems, didn't get cut off by any aggressive drivers, and I really don't think we ran any red lights today...........

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Apache Trail

We are staying at Palm Gardens RV Resort in Mesa AZ. It is a nice place, too large for me but the price was right and they have the amenities we like. Hot tub, club house, and heated pool to name a few.
We decided to take a drive along the "Apache Trail" up to Roosevelt Lake, Ron, Linda Mike and Sandy was also going so we followed each other most of the way.

Here is the Superstition Mountains just East of Phoenix.

We met up with Ron and the gang at this ghost town, it is Goldfield Ghost Town just outside of Apache Junction AZ. It has a lot of neat stuff, but it is just another tourist trap in my book.

Here is the group at one of the first scenic overlooks, Looking over Apache Lake.

This is the nice lady that offered to take our picture all together. we all gave her our cameras so she took several pics for each of us.

At one of the several one lane bridges we stopped at I took this picture of the canyon that the creek flowed through.

Linda and Sandy ventured further up the trail to get a better view.

Here is one of the many awesome sights we were blessed with along the 150 mile loop. The 150 miles is from our CG back to our CG.

On the way to Roosevelt Lake we seen this van, we were humored by the "hows my driving" sign on the back, and the van had ran off into the ditch.

I was going to offer to pull him out with the Jeep, but the driver wasn't around.

Here is another awesome view we were blessed with.

Another one of the lakes.

The Apache Trail has 20+ miles of dirt road from Apache Flats to Roosevelt Lake, and a lot of the dirt road is a wash board road. Very bumpy, like the old wash boards used before washing machines. The Jeep handles roads like there easy, but Ron's big one ton dually had a rough time bouncing around.

Here is the bridge crossing over Lake Roosevelt, northward towards Payton, and south to Globe. We went south not crossing the bridge. 

A look at the upper side of Roosevelt Dam, the dam was built in 1911 and is one of the few masonry dams still in existence.

We stopped on the lower side of the dam and looked upwards, we even walked down the path to get a better look, but for some reason I didn't take a picture.

We had a good day and look forward to having many more with our friends every where we go...........

Friday, December 16, 2011


 Here in Tucson we have an aunt that is really something special. She is 75 and lives close to her daughter and son-in-law. She always enjoys a visit from us, so much so that she had 30 amp service put in so we could be plugged in while visiting her. we really thank her for that.

 She has a daughter that lives just around the corner with her son-in-law and one grandson, and the other grandson lives with his wife a few miles away, and one of her many nephews lives a few blocks away. They are all just fun people to be around, and we always enjoy being around them.

 Although they always tell me Tucson is warm and dry, I have found out that Tucson isn't always warm and dry, but that may be because we are here. Highs in the low 60's and high 50's isn't warm to me, and when the lows dip into the 20's I start thinking we should have went back to FL.

 Pam and Jon are always entertaining at their house, and are willing to help any way they can, and their son Brian is always looking for some way to do something for someone. Andrew, their oldest son is too busy working and taking care of his wife and two babies to spend much time with us, but they do come over every Friday for Yhatzee night.

 As I had posted before we put the rig in the shop to have an exhaust leak fixed, and the Kenworth dealer had it for 10 days, but when I went to pick it up they had not touched it. I was one very unhappy camper that day. It looks like Tucson is not a good place to have work done on your rig. The front-end work was screwed up in Tucson and now the exhaust, so Sunday we will be headed for Phoenix to get it repaired.

 It has been an enjoyable stay here in Tucson despite the incompetent shops I found. Spending time with family is always fun and enjoyable, but we are ready to spend some time with our RV'ing family. We will head west after the rig is repaired next week. We have the "class of 2007" 5 year reunion in Q next month, and it will be good to exchange stories with others that went FT the same time as we did.

 Once we get back into "vacation" mode and out of visiting mode I'll try to do a little better on keeping the blog updated, so stay tuned................

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Very Proud of my Little Girl

 Last week we flew back to Knoxville TN as we do almost every year because my doctor wants to see me twice a year. But this time we had a few other things that we would have flown back for even with our doctor appointments. Our daughter Jenelle walked across the stage at Thompson Bowling Arena where she received her diploma. She is now a graduate of the University of Tennessee, with a BA degree in Communication.

 It was a long struggle for her, in 2008 she moved to Knoxville. Within two weeks she had her own apartment, a job, and enrolled in school. A little over a year later she had a house built and a new car in the garage, and she is doing it with almost no help from us. I know she spent many lonely hours studying because the closest of our family was 65 miles away, and we were running the roads in the RV.

 When she walked across that stage it opened a new door in her life. She had done without a lot of things, and she had put a lot of worldly desires aside to achieve her dream of getting that diploma so she can have a better future.

 I truly hope she succeeds in whatever she chooses for the next chapter in her life....

GOOD JOB JENELLE..............