Sunday, January 30, 2011

Yuma, Arizona

Sun, Jan.16th - Tue, Jan 25th

One day while we were at Yuma we went down to Algodones, Mexico. We bought a few trinkets and ended up at party central for margaritas, beers, shrimp tacos and burritos. This is a big outdoor cafe in the center of a block of shopping. They have live music here everyday. There was a big group of folks in orange t-shirts at the table next to us. They all spend the winters in Yuma and come here every tuesday. Other nights they are in Yuma at the VFW, American Legion, etc. You are never too old to have fun! We met some folks from North Dakota, Nebraska, California and several Canadian locales here.

Most people just walk across the border. We saw this little pedaling taxi guy hauling as many as 8 people at one time. What a way to make a living! As we left, we stopped for our liquor allotment. Each person is allowed to bring back one bottle every 30 days. They keep track by the bar code on your passport. $8.00 for a fifth of tequila and $6.00 each for Brandy Alexander and Pina Colada. The wait in the customs line to get back into the U.S. can be as much as two hours long. We had to wait about one hour. The locals go up and down the line trying to sell their trinkets, John's favorite part.

Another day we went to a celebration to honor the military, as there is a big marine base here. It was at the Visitor's Center, which is the old Quartermaster's Depot. The old downtown was also roped off with venders and entertainment. It was just across the river and down a couple blocks from where we camped. They had an excellent brass quintet group from another base and other equally terrific local singers and a band.

They also had this plane and car on display from the 1949 Endurance Flight. The plane flew continuously for 47 days. It never touched the ground. They handed fuel and other necessities to the two pilots from the car. They even changed oil and spark plugs on the go.

We camped here at the Paradise Casino while we were in Yuma. There were 50 to 75 campers there all the time we were there. Just across the road is a brand new, very pretty park with walking trails and a pond and it is right next to the river.

Just at the top of the park is this Quechan (pronounced Kwit-san) Indian Mission Church.
Just a few steps from the church is the Ocean-to-Ocean Bridge that made the first transcontinental road in the southern U.S. possible. Just beyond that on the other side of the river is the Yuma Territorial Prison Museum on the left and Old Downtown Yuma on the right. Also, right along the river is the East Wetlands Park, the Gateway Park and the West Wetlands park with continuous hiking and biking trails along the river for seven miles. We hiked along here several times. It is beautiful.

This is taken from the East Wetlands trail just across the river from the casino where we were camped. It shows the prison, the bridge and the church that we could see from the casino. We took Mom out to see the monuments at Felicity, which I wrote about in last year's blog, and spent a couple days at the huge flea markets here.
On to Why, Az. Tuesday morning. We had to stay thru Monday night for the TV reception, so I could watch "House". I will have to miss it for the next few weeks, so I hope Dawn is taping it for me.

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