Friday, February 16, 2018

Fun With Friends in Arizona

February 6-15, 2018
Yuma - Casa Grande - Tombstone, Arizona

We're in Yuma to see our friend Teri - another high school friend who Bill stayed in touch with for many years. She doesn't go to the reunions so we're happy to see her here when we can.

I continue to feel better, but Tuesday we take it easy at home. Coming down the hill into town on Monday the Check Engine light comes on again. It's always been computer updates so we aren't concerned. Bill makes numerous phone calls and finally finds a service center who can take us on Wednesday morning. 

Tuesday evening it's pizza and pasta with Teri and her partner Ashley. We spend a couple hours getting caught up. She doesn't do photos on social media so I forgo getting a pic.

Rush Trucking takes us in at 8:00 and we head to a little diner nearby. Tasty breakfast and good coffee to linger over while we kill some time. From there we spend the day at the theater!

Penny's Diner at the Oak Tree Inn

Can't imagine my kids being "criminals" as their high school mascot.
The Post is an amazing movie - both exciting history and timely commentary. Attempted censorship of the press by the White House is an ugly issue. After lunch we return and see Hostiles. Also ugly and historic, this one is morbidly depressing. 

The motorhome is ready to go with a new nox sensor installed, and a $100 deductible. Cummins picks up the $600 balance and we're down the road at 4:00. 

We grab a one night site at Blue Skies Ranch RV Park where we have a nasty neighbor, and we're once again reminded how much we love that our home is on wheels!

A single night in Casa Grande to break up the drive to Tombstone takes us to a Thousand Trails park where we are given badges to wear - any time we're away from our site?? Most of the park is seasonals and it's a bit "Stepford" for us. 

The drive to Tombstone is a familiar one and by mid-day we're set up in our favorite Arizona home - the home of our dear friends, Donnie and Anna. It's our fourth time mooch-docking here, and we always have a wonderful time.

Of all the beautiful places we see throughout the country, the yellow-grass plains are at the top of my favorites list.
Bill and Donnie make a trip to Tucson, see a local college basketball game, hang out at home. Anna and I visit Fort Huachuca where she worked for 36 years before retiring last year, take Tessa for a much-needed grooming, take in a small museum, get a haircut.  Together we all watch the Olympics, eat amazing home-cooked meals, visit Slaughter Ranch and the Whitewater Draw with her sister and brother-in-law, enjoy the company of life-long friends and beautiful sunsets.

Much better :-)
Long views from the top of Reservoir Drive at Fort Huachuca.

Sheriff John Slaughter built this ranch in the late 1800's. The Mexican border is yards from the property fence.

It could be 200 years ago.....

Beautifully restored homestead.

The grounds are a welcoming oasis in the desert.

Donnie and Anna - and their photo-bombing goose.

A beautiful Southern Arizona day.

Bill making burro friends.

Jimmy and Cindy looking for critters.

One of several long-horn cattle on the ranch.
Checking off my bucket list - Sandhill Cranes at Whitewater Draw - so many, they look like acres of gray rocks.

A flock of Snow Geese drop in.

Several species of duck add to the variety of the scene.

Such interesting birds with wonderful haunting cries.

This huge toad never moves from the path along the water.

Flocks of these pretties fill the tall grass.

Clouds roll in.

A hawk watches for prey along the ground.

The Buffalo Soldier exhibit is well done.

Apache scouts were required to wear red scarves to identify them in battle.

A short film on the history of the Women's Army Corps at the base.

Hard to beat Arizona sunsets.
Serious Olympic watchers.
In addition to all the fun we have with these friends, we have the opportunity to visit with even more. On Sunday another high-school friend from Tucson, Reggie, and his girlfriend Meredith, join us for dinner. 

Bill, Jodee, Donnie, Meredith, Anna and Reggie
On our last day, we join John and Pam at Michael and Janna's lovely desert home in the small community of Pearce. I'm upset I waited until we were leaving to take photos of the renovated house and golden grasses on their property - and then couldn't because of the rain.

The rain brings out the colors along Ghost Town Road - and turns the dirt into slippery mud, making for an exciting drive.

Cute, little Emmi shows us her home.

The greatest blessing of this nomadic life is making wonderful friends - Michael, Emmi, Janna, Bill, Pam and John.
The smell of rain in the desert - heavenly.
Our week flies by, and Friday we return west.


  1. It was a joy to have you and Bill visit and of course Ms. Tessa!!

    1. Thanks Janna. We had a great time, and LOVE your little oasis!

  2. More good times with this wonderful style we live:) I was wondering why you were at the movies at 10:00 in the morning! Now I know:) Good the home is working smoothly again!

    I couldn't believe there was a school with the nickname of the Criminals. So I had to do some research. They really are the Criminals! Their high school was in the Territorial Prison in the early 1900's Until the town needed it for a jail. When they beat Phoenix Union HS in a football game, the angry fans called them criminals and the name stuck! They actual have old prison gates at the entrance to their football field. Their mascot is ugly! An interesting story!

    See you in a couple days!

    1. That's such a great story! We knew about the territorial prison but not that the school was actually on the grounds - and that opponent fans had inspired the name.

      Looking forward to another meet up!

  3. Excellent meetups and Sandhill cranes to boot! I love the sound they make. :)

  4. And I thought we were meeting up with a lot of friends on the road! :-) Aren't the Sandhill Cranes beautiful? And how cool that you saw the pretty Yellow-headed Blackbirds! Wonderful refuge photos.

    1. Wish you guys were still in the area!! I love those blackbirds :-)

  5. Great pictures Jodee! Lol I had to laugh at your paragraph on wearing badges! Did you ever figure out why? Beautiful photos of the birds!

    1. They said "So we know you belong here." That was enough for me to know it wasn't our kind of place!

  6. Tessa's beauty treatment certainly worked! Not that she's not beautiful every day. OK, foot out of mouth now. :)

    1. LOL she certainly thinks she always looks like a princess!

  7. You have been very busy folks as usual. Nice summary of all you did. Too bad you have hardly any friends to get together with. Gorgeous skies and I love that picture of the grasses following the hawk and that terrific toad.

    1. You'd never know we had zero social life before getting on the road! The combination of old high school friends and new fulltimer friends makes us rich beyond belief.

      That pic of the golden grass is my fav too :-)))

  8. Yet another area of AZ I've yet to explore. I do like the look of those golden grasses. It is nice having friends all over the place and the wheels to visit them.

    1. You would love this area!!! Lakes, mountains, plains, birds, deer, cool history (with no need to see the touristy parts), and friendly people. There's plenty of boondocking too!!

  9. What a fun time. Friends, pizza, movies, birds! And oh, Fluffy Tessa! Did you tell them, Badges? We don't need no stinkin badges! Nice sunsets too!

    1. I definitely considered telling them exactly that :-)) So weird!!

  10. Hate nasty neighbors. I think we've all had a few of those. Love the area you were visiting. We did the sandhill cranes not long ago. There's so much to enjoy in that area. Looks like you did a good job of enjoying.

    1. It's a great area for sure!! We've been so fortunate to have only a couple neighbors we were glad to leave behind :)