To Las Vegas…and Back….

January 30, 2017

We spent the week of January 20-27 in Las Vegas. Every year we spend Georgie’s birthday there. No different this year except we took our “home” with us. We stayed right on the strip at the RV Park at Circus Circus. (I thought I got some pictures of this park but I apparently did not).

We would definitely stay here again. The sites were a very nice size, easy in, easy out, convenience store, security and a very nice dog park.

As we left La Posa South LTVA the rigs were packing themselves in for the Quartzite RV Show. We still don’t understand why they all park so close to each other when there’s over 11,000 acres to park on.

On our way to Las Vegas we pulled off I-40 in Needles, CA to get some fuel. Man oh man! The price of diesel fuel was $3.74 a gallon. We have paid on average $2.55 a gallon.

Anyway, we pulled off exit 144 since there were 3 stations, a Mobil, Shell & Chevron. We pulled into Shell but realized we were on the wrong side of the pump. We went next door to the Chevron since the price was the same. As Georgie was pumping fuel a young man from Shell came over. He said he thought we had a broken shock. He could hear it when we pulled in and when we pulled out. He and Georgie got under the rig and I’ll be damned…there were 2 broken shocks! He said when we were done we could pull back over to Shell. He’d see what he could do.

We went back to Shell. They were a full service station. They jacked up one right side of the rig. The broken shock could not be repaired. We decided to have all 6 shocks replaced. One of the leaf springs was bent badly so we would have to replace that as well.

We couldn’t have been luckier…they had the shocks and the leaf spring in stock. How was that possible? We found out they have a contract with Penske trucks as well as Good Sam’s RV service. They have to be well stocked in order to keep these contracts.

The young man that came over initially was a licensed mechanic. We were in good hands.

The work done took over 3 ½ hours but they only charged us for 2 hours. As well they gave us a substantial discount on parts as well as another discount for a cash payment. The whole thing was just over $1000. Shocks with a lifetime warranty were used.

When we finally got back on the road we kept saying how lucky we were. Had this young man not come over we may have ended up in a world of shit. Lucky…that’s all we can say.

Because of this slight delay we didn’t get into Las Vegas until rush hour on a Friday night! Oh shit! This doesn’t look so bad but it really was! We made it because Georgie is an expert driver!

We had a great time in Vegas…as always! On Georgie’s birthday we had the breakfast buffet at Red Rock Casino…

And dinner at Batista’s…we love this place! We think they have the best Italian food in Vegas!

One of the best places we found in Las Vegas 14 years ago was Capriotti’s Sandwich Shop! They have the best subs we have ever eaten. We had subs from there 3 times this visit!

We arrived in Vegas a few days before our friends. We, of course, wanted to hit a few casino’s. Georgie decided we would head to Harrah’s. As we pulled into the parking garage there was a height limit. As you can see…WE BARELY MADE IT!!! And…Georgie went all the way to the 6th level with our antenna hitting EVERY SINGLE CONCRETE BEAM!!! It felt like if we happened to run over a small rock the top of the truck would have hit! I was ducking at every beam! He thought it was soooo funny!

As always, driving around Las Vegas there’s always “interesting” things to see. This is one we don’t remember seeing before.

I tried to talk Georgie into stopping here, Puppetry of the Penis! He just laughed and kept on driving.

We passed it a few times with Ray & Jackie during the week we were here…no other takers wanting to stop. Party Poopers!

On our way back to Arizona we passed fields of Joshua Trees that reminded us of our precious daughter-in-law, Ashley Bauman!

On one of our trips out here with the kids we were taking them to the Grand Canyon. We had rented an 8 person van. Ashley was in the very back between Brent & Brandon. We were on the road about 45 minutes when we noticed Ashley didn’t look so good. Apparently she gets car sick. And the fact she sat all the way in the back didn’t help. She never mentioned she gets car sick. Nobody said she was getting sick sitting back there.

Anyway, we pulled over, right in the middle of a huge Joshua Tree field. Ashley quickly got out of the van and made her way up a small hill, sat down, and tried to compose herself & not throw up. While she sat there the other kids roamed around, commenting on Joshua Tree’s.

The rest of the trip the kids made all kind of comments & jokes about Joshua Trees. (you probably had to be there) We laughed our asses off every time one of them made a joke about it!

When we got back to La Posa South BLM in Quartzite, AZ we were hoping our same site was unoccupied…it was! So happy!

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

The check engine light had come on in the truck soon after we arrived in Quartzite. We took the truck to the Ford dealer in Blythe, CA (which is only 20 miles away). They said a vane was stuck in the turbo. They could repair it for around $3000. They also said it didn’t have to be done immediately. Georgie had been researching having the truck “bullet proofed”. There’s a guy in Atlanta that does it. It runs about $10,000 but it’s not actually “bullet proofing” but on the same order.

The real “bullet proofing” is done in Mesa, AZ by Bulletproof Diesel. They fabricate the major components used. We decided rather than spend $3000 to get 1 thing repaired we would spend the money and get it bulletproofed. Georgie got very lucky when he called to make an appointment. They had an opening February 13-17 (it takes 5 days for them to do it). Usually appointments are 4-6 weeks out. Mesa is on the east side of Phoenix, about 2 ½ hours from Quartzite, AZ.

We left for Mesa at 4:30 am since we had to be there at 7:30 am. Watching the local news every day it seems that I-10, the 101 & 202 loops always had major delays. We didn’t want to be late plus we had to stop at Sky Harbor Airport in Phoenix to pick up a rental car.

Side note on the rental car: We rented a Kia Soul (little hamster car) because our friends, Ray & Jackie, had rented one in Las Vegas. It was really comfy & had good get up & go! Since Georgie dropped me off to pick up the car…I was the only driver…FOR THE WHOLE WEEK! Yeah for me! I really miss driving more than I’ve been doing the past 9 months. Anyway…this car was really fun to drive & had plenty of room for Tori & Annie.

All went well. We picked up the truck Friday afternoon. Nice not to have to worry about something major going wrong for the next 200,000 miles!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Well…it’s time to “pick up stakes” and head a little further north. We’re going to head a couple of hours north to Lake Havasu City, AZ on Wednesday. I need to have something checked on my Harley. Desert Thunder Motorcycle Shop is there. Georgie had to have the volt meter changed on his & they were recommended. He was happy with their service, pricing and speed of the repair.

We were going to boondock for 2-3 days but decided it was going to be pretty warm, in the high 80’s so we are staying at Havasu Falls RV Resort for 3 days…ahhh…air conditioning! We’ll head north to maybe Kingman, AZ or Las Vegas (again) for a couple days. Not sure where to after that.

We were really sad to leave Quartzite as we had our own little piece of heaven since December 29, 2016 (except for the week in January…Vegas). We, unknowingly, were in the “nudist section” of La Posa South BLM. Yeah…our life was very quiet…and…we didn’t worry if we left the blinds open at night…ha, ha, ha!

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Our Ride to Silverton and Ouray, CO

Monday, August 1, 2016

Moved from Cortez, CO to Durango, CO for 2 reasons.  1st, Annie still had to see the Vet in Durango.  2nd, we wanted to ride the Million Dollar Highway to Silverton then on to Ouray.

Got settled into our new park, Alpen Rose RV Park by 2pm.  20160803_175622 20160803_180542 Alpen Rose RV Park Durango

 

 

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Well…we left the rig at 9:15 am to ride the Million Dollar Highway.

Before I go any further you have to know that I have only ridden in Florida…it’s very, very flat!  Very flat!  We have to look hard to find a road with curves and rarely find hills let alone mountains.

Anyway, we got to Silverton at 11:15 am.  It was only 41 miles but it took us 2 hours!  Parts of this road were terrifying!!  No shoulders on some parts and NO GUARDRAILS…ON 20160802_115511 20160802_115441 20160802_115352 20160802_115320SWITCHBACKS, some were double switchbacks!!!!  I mean to tell you…when you looked down…you couldn’t see the bottom. 20160802_124704

Georgie decided he would pull over at an overlook…on a huge incline…on a curve!  I just kept on going!  Again…are you f***ing kidding me?  I pulled over about ¾ of a mile further…where it was a little more level.  He caught up.  He said, “What the hell!  I thought you’d want to take some pictures.”  “NOT THERE!” I said.  Maybe on the way back…where the overlooks where on the side where there were mountains…not humongous cliffs.

When we stopped in Silverton, Georgie said to me, “did you see blah, blah, blah?”

“Are you f***ing kidding me!  I kept my eyes straight ahead!  I wasn’t looking at anything but the road on those curves!”

20160724_11083220160802_113356 20160802_113838 20160802_112203 20160724_110931 20160724_113016 20160724_105358We walked around Silverton for about an hour.  Picked up a couple of Harley shirts then back on the bikes to head on up to Ouray, another 25 miles north…on the same road…with more switchbacks…double switchbacks…a lot of them!

We didn’t even stop in Ouray.  We just turned around to head back…because the sky was black as coal…it was going to rain.  Georgie wanted to stop, I said no way!  And get caught in the rain, on this road…with all the switchbacks…and no guardrails!

I’ll bet if I said it once I said it a hundred times on the way up…to myself but out loud…HOLY F***!!!

It wasn’t as bad going back. We got back to Silverton without hitting rain.  We stopped for gas.  Talked to a few people on bikes going both directions.  They asked how it was.  Good thing they talked more to Georgie than me.  I did say it wasn’t bad coming back.

We left Silverton and headed home.  The sky was still very black.  Georgie, as usual, said we’d be fine.  The rain was behind us.  WRONG!  It started raining, a little, about 20 minutes in.  Not too bad.  Well…it just got worse and worse.  It was howling and very cold!  I worked out ok for me though.  I was more worried about just seeing the road rather than the curves…or the speed limit.  It felt like sleet hitting our faces.  I was sure I would have bruises on my face.  I didn’t.

We were about 23 miles from home when George pulls over on the shoulder.  It’s still raining mind you.    As we’re riding at 60 mph his bike shuts off.   He got it running in about 5 minutes and it ran fine.  Never did figure it out.

It finally stopped raining about 15 miles from home.  The sun came out and dried our jeans.  Now they were clean I thought.  Good thing we had our leather jackets on ‘cause it was really cold riding, not to mention the freezing cold rain.

I kept thinking, if I could ride this road, especially in this kind of weather, I could ride any road!  Bring it on!!