Monday, March 28, 2016

New favorite barbecue

Casa Grande, AZ
Sundance RV Resort

This morning I almost felt like I was back in the work days.  We had to be in Tempe at 9 am for a recall on our truck.  Now you ask me why would we go all the way to Tempe when there is a Dodge dealer in Casa Grande?  

I'm a person who wouldn't take a short cut walking across the grass, if there was a sign that said to stay off the grass.  Henry Brown dealership puts his new cars on the shoulder of the road.  This blocks your view of the traffic at the traffic light.  There is also a sign that Arizona Department of Transportation has posted right in front of where they park the cars.  The AZDOT signs state that it is illegal to park cars there and sites the law number.  Why would anyone take or buy from a dealer that blatantly doesn't obey the law? Second questions is why don't they enforce this law when they take the time to post it.  I'll take my business elsewhere.

The recall was suppose to take an hour which would mean it would be done around the time Costco opens and giving us enough time to meet everyone for lunch at 11:30.  Jeri Williams had picked out the place on Chandler Boulevard and it was close by.  

Our service manager said it should take one hour and ten minutes.  After we waited an hour and forty five minutes, I asked how much longer it was going to be.  The service manager went to check on it and  came back to say they were just finishing up.  I said we had a 11:30 engagement.  They brought the truck up and apologized as the mechanic that was scheduled to do it, reported off which caused a mix up and they dropped the ball.  They gave us a certificate for two free diesel oil changes and we were on our way.  

We were about 5 minutes late arriving at the Can't Stop Smokin' Bar-B-Q Smokehouse.  Jeri and Terry had arrived early and Terry kept smelling the barbecue.  He said his mouth was watering and he didn't waste anytime in ordering his meal as soon as everyone had arrived.  

Bill and I have always been fans of Rudy's Barbecue but I have to say this was much better and I believe the prices were a little less expensive.  I ordered a half chicken with two sides which included a drink for $8.99 minus the 10% senior discount.  
We had planned to meet up with Jeri and Terry while we were both in Tucson at the same time but this worked out better.  It was so good seeing everyone.  We always try to meet up with Jim and Sandie before everyone leaves for the summer.  This is that time of the year when everyone is getting hitch itch and starting to talk about their summer plans.      

Needless to say, we stayed longer than it took to eat our meals.  The weather forecast was for high winds today.  Matter of fact, the flashing signs were out when we went up I 10 earlier.  

If you ever travel I 10 from Phoenix to Casa Grande, you've probably seen the herd of wild horses on the reservation.  I used to worry because the last few times we've seen them, it looked like the herd was getting much smaller.  Today however, I noticed that the herd seemed to have split up as there were two herds not far apart.

We left the restaurant and made a quick stop in Costco and decided to head back to Casa Grande via the reservation.  There can be some big accidents during the wind storms on  I 10.  

I hope everyone had a lovely Easter.  We were blessed to be able to spend it with Dad at the assisted care center.  Dad had no idea that it was Easter, and he also forgot that we were coming for the brunch.  
I had cooked our Easter dinner on Saturday because I didn't figure it would be much of a brunch and that way we'd have left overs when we came home.  I was mistaken as the brunch was very good.  They had the usual breakfast items like quiche, bacon, eggs, french toast but they also had ham, chicken and lamb along with lots of vegetables.  And if that wasn't enough, a very nice selection of desserts.  

Hope you had a great Easter.

Turtle Safely.......

Saturday, March 26, 2016

A New Ride--But Not Ours

Casa Grande, AZ
Sundance RV Resort

Polly and Vern had invited us to Heber with them to celebrate their 10th anniversary, but we had previously made plans to go to Benson to see Don and Sharon who we hadn't seen since Quartzite.  In not going to Heber, we missed seeing Polly and Vern's new truck.

They came down on Thursday for a visit.  What a gorgeous truck.  They told me when they ordered it that it was going to be brown.  It's a metallic brown the color of our favorite thing--dark chocolate.  It almost looks black in the sunlight.  
Needless to say they are happy owners and look forward to many miles of adventures.  This GMC has many more bells and whistles than their other one.  Vern also has a one of a kind as he has two back up cameras.

The first thing Bill and I both noticed was how quiet this truck is.  It really rides nice.  Congratulations on your anniversary and your anniversary present, Vern and Polly.  

Bill was trying to decide where to put his generator box for the Honda generator.  It is a steel box with cut outs for the cord, exhaust and choke.  You can lock it up and it is bolted to the truck bed.  This should make it a lot easier on the old back, so we aren't lifting it so much.  Also no worries about it getting stolen.  

It was nice to have someone else's opinion on where to locate it in the bed of the truck.  In very short time, the four bolts were drilled and it was bolted down.

It's been a while since we've visited with Polly and Vern by themselves.  There was a lot of talk about going to the 56th Escapade in Vermont.  It was fun letting them know some other friends who will be attending. Since they will be departing for their annual Mexican trip soon, we probably won't see them again until Vermont.

Of course, there was a lot of exchanging places to see and places to park.  I'm worried about having enough time to see all that we want to see on the way.  We still have doctor appointments in April so can't set an actual departure date yet.  

It was nice to have Vern and Polly around as I was waiting for a call from a friend whose husband was having an important procedure.  It did make the time go by quicker.  

Turtle Safely......

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Closed--Park and Exit

Casa Grande, AZ
Sundance RV Resort

We were in no hurry hitching up as our plans were to drive to Tucson.  Do you know what happens when you have decided you aren't in a hurry?  Yep, you're right.  We were ready to pull out before 10.  

I drove yesterday and the weather was perfect and the traffic and construction wasn't bad.  I pulled up to the gate at the Pima County Fairgrounds and found this.
How could the fairgrounds RV park be closed on a Monday?  What kind of a deal is this?  

Now what?  I continued out the road on Rita and pulled over to the side of the road and called the fairgrounds.  Yes, they are closed getting ready for the fair.  Now what?  

All of a sudden I looked up and there were swarms of bees everywhere.  Both sides of the fiver, roof, and all the windows of the truck were covered with them.  

I hit the gas pedal and we went back down to the Houghton exit.  I remembered there was a RV park near the fairgrounds.  

First impressions weren't good.  The road into the park was full of potholes.  It was an old park.  Oh well, it can't be expensive or can it?  I ended up taking a 30 amp site and it wasn't easy to make some of the tight turns.  At least the lady at check in was very nice.

It was almost 11 when I called to let Karen know we have arrived.  We decided to drive down to their place rather than them come over.  It didn't take long to get to their place.

John and Karen Knoll are old friends that we met in South Dakota many years ago.  They were so helpful about RVing.
They were full timers at that point, but they have since bought a beautiful home in Green Valley.  You would not believe how they have transformed this home.  Not just the exterior and interior their landscaping is something out of Better Homes and Gardens.  

John greeted us and showed us what they've done in the front yard.
They also showed us his new Harley he purchased since we've seen them.
Being a former rider of a Moto Guzzi, I had to see what it felt like to sit on.
Back in the saddle again........

John and Karen were also sporting new hair styles.  Karen's on her head and John's on his face.
We had a fine meal at El Rodeo.  Every table was occupied.
The food was delicious and plentiful.  The margarita's were very good too.
I couldn't believe that it had gotten dark outside and how late it was.  We aren't nighttime drivers anymore, but it was around 8 pm when we returned.  I can't believe we didn't run out of things to say in all that time.

Our plan had been to stay two days in Tucson and spent the next day visiting Geri and Terry but the weather forecast wasn't great and we decided to just come back to Casa Grande today.  We left about 9:30 and I drove back up I 10.  The traffic wasn't bad at all going through Tucson.  The winds were blowing hard, but I couldn't really feel it while driving.

Bill and I were chatting on the way and we both felt like this past week we were on a vacation.  We didn't travel far, had no real plans but had so much fun just visiting with friends.  

I took the exit to I 8 and as I was approaching the exit for Thornton Road there was a sign that said right lane closed 3/4 mile.  The exit sign said 1/2 mile.  Now if my math is correct that would mean the exit comes before the lane ends.  I'm in the right lane ready to make the exit when I notice a barricade across the exit.  Now I have to get into the left lane quickly.  Do you think anyone would let me in?

I ended up going down to the next exit and it turned out to be dirt roads so crossed over and came back to the exit before Thornton.  What a mess!  

I must say I did a pretty good job of parking again.  It seems to be getting easier.  

Turtle Safely........

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Mescal--Maybe the Last One

Cochise Terrace
Benson, Arizona

What a wonderful experience we had today.  I read Debbie and Larry's post about touring Mescal.  We've stayed in Benson many times, but I had no idea that there was a movie set nearby other than Gammon's Gulch.  

I looked it up on the internet and noticed that is said it was closed.  Why not take a drive out and see what we can find?  We are at exit 302 and it is located at exit 297.  It's not too far away.

As we ran out of pavement we noticed the sign.  It had a "Tour" on top of the no trespassing sign.  It was about 11:30  and it said tours were at 11 and 1.  We drove up the dirt road and decided we'd just wait until the next tour started.   
Frank Brown came out of his travel trailer to greet us and said that he just completed a tour.  He said the next tour may be the last ever.  He's going to be 81 in July and he is scheduled for back surgery on Thursday.  

We said no problem, we'd just wait until 1.  He told us a lot about the place, his past experiences in his life, his 6 wives and then he said he'd make a deal with us.

He would give us a private tour if we agreed to put the cones back across the road when we leave.  He jumped in his truck and road down the dirt road retrieving the "Tour" sign and blocking the road with cones.  

Anyone that knows Bill knows he loves the cowboy shows.  You couldn't wipe the grin off his face if you wanted to.  

Frank rattled off all the movies that were made at this movie set.  He knew all the famous lines that were said at all the buildings.  
Bill found out he and Frank had a lot in common besides almost being the same age, birthdays, employment, and the love of the west but not the six wives.

I'm sure I won't remember all the details that Bill will, but I'll tell you what I remember.
This saloon was in a lot of movies but the Quick and the Dead starring Sharon Stone and Gene Hackman is the one I remembered.  

We made a comment about how sturdy they built the building as we entered.
It looked like real brick but it was plastic and fiberglass.
I'm sure you've seen these doors in movies before.

Franks was so full of stories and he kept apologizing for having to lean against something.  We didn't care as we never tired of hearing all the stories.

 The saloon was used in many movies.
Notice the red wallpaper.  They change the color of it in different movies.  The Quick and the Dead had red wallpaper.

This building was used in Tombstone as the Bird Cage.  Frank did tell us that Tombstone wasn't filmed at all in the town of Tombstone.  

Frank talked the entire time we walked around and he walked very slowly.

I believe this was "Fly's Photography" building used in Tombstone.

This was the OK Corral.  Frank said PBS also did a filming here explaining how the gunfight actually happened.

Frank told us that it gets very windy there and once they had winds over 70 mph.  Those winds knocked down many buildings.  In the 1990's there were 32 buildings.    

The western movie stories just kept flowing.  
Do you remember the scene with Mel Gibson from the movie Maverick  hanging from this tree with the snakes all around?

There were more than one buildings used as the Sheriff/Marshal's office.
I can't wait to watch more western movies and see who used this building.
Once again those aren't stone walls, they are made out of plastic.

Oh yes, Frank has appeared in many films.  He says he's used to hide flaws such as electric lines in the horizon.
Can't you just picture him in the movies?

This was where Josey Wales shot the guys as he was returning from the general store.
It looks like a much steeper incline but I can picture the Earp's as they come over the rise.

The Cowboys in Wyatt Earp movie shot up the theater. I chose not to climb the stairs to the cribs.

I know Frank listed a bunch of movies that this building was filmed in, but I can't remember which now.

This was also used in Tombstone.
There were just too many stories to remember what each building represented.
Do you think Bill was enjoying this?
This home was used in the Young Riders.

This building was used as the bunkhouse where the Young Riders bunked.

I could go on and on but it is well worth seeing and Frank Brown makes the difference.  His wealth of knowledge and the way he tells the stories and the famous lines he repeats make the this something we'll never forget.  

Mescal was built in the 1960's for TV filming of Little House on the Prairie, Cimmaron, Highwayman and the Buffalo Soldiers.  

Frank told us he's been there for 21 years and is the sole caretaker/tour guide of the place.  Mescal is actually a part of Old Tucson.  Mescal is only open a few months out of the year and then only every other weekend.   Some of the other movies filmed in Mescal include Dirty Dingus McGee, Tom Horn, Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean, Monte Walsh, The Hanged Man, Frisco Kid and Desperado.

I wouldn't be writing this blog if it wasn't for Larry and Debbie Ambuehl.  Thanks so much for sharing your visit.  We would have never known about this treasure.  

Turtle Safely.......

Saturday, March 19, 2016

A Walk Around the Block

Cochise Terrace
Benson, AZ

I spent most of the morning frustrated with the satellite.  It would work fine and then I got a 771 error then it went to a 775 and 776 and then it would work again.  I put my rack I made out of a metal mesh drawer dividers under the receiver.  I wanted something to give air flow to the Genie receiver.  I finally ended up changing the coax and it's worked fine ever since then.  Of course, the coax cable is 50 feet long instead of the 3 feet I needed.

We hadn't planned on doing anything today until dinner with the King's but I needed to pick up a couple of things at Walmart.

There was a small museum in town I thought we could check out.  Next to the museum there was a little farmer's market going strong.  We decided to walk through it before the museum.  
Everyone was very friendly and it was nice to see some of the crafts people made.
I have to say I left the camera in the truck so I didn't get any photos until we were leaving town. 

The San Pedro Valley Arts and Historical Society had a small historic building but everything was labelled well and the docent was very informative.  

He told us they have 70 volunteers that work there.  I was very surprised they are so active for such a small town.

This photo didn't come out well, but this mural was very well done.

We were surprised that the Greyhound Depot was also the Benson Information office.  

What a wealth of knowledge the employees have!  The lady there was telling us about the Apache Powder Company.  They made dynamite from 1920 to 1983. This is where they made nitroglycerin.  I had no idea pecans were used in the process.  I wish I had taken the camera with me.  There was an Angel Buggie where the nitro was pushed in a cart down a track to the dynamite building.   If you hit a bump, you became an angel immediately.  There were 8 angels that lost their life doing that job.  Today the Apache Powder Company makes fertilizer

I love walking the streets of these old interesting towns.  

Before we knew it, it was just about time to go the King's for dinner.  It was a wonderful meal.  Frank made a pork loin on the grill.  Gloria had potatoes, rolls, spinach salad, asparagus and apple sauce.  

It was a great evening and I don't think one world problem got solved.  

We left before it got dark, as it does cool off when the sun goes down.  

Turtle Safely......