Sunday, February 9, 2014

Quartzsite, Arizona

Thursday, Jan. 21st - Thursday, Feb. 6th

If you're wondering what to do with all those beer cans that have been piling up in your garage, here's an idea for you, beer can cactus.  Those seniors just have too much time on their hands.  This was at the campground in Phoenix that we left yesterday.

This is the University of Phoenix Stadium where we went to the RV show. 

We drove by the Phoenix International Speedway which was just a few miles south of our campground along the Gila River, before we headed for Quartzsite.

Walking around the RV show at Quartzsite, we saw this tiny fold down trailer that made into two rooms with three bunks in the bedroom.

We saw several minstrels singing for tips among all the flea market tents..

We camped in the desert about six miles south of town at Roadrunner camp area in the the La Paz Valley.  There are many thousands of campers of all types all over the desert for miles in every direction from Quartzsite for the two weeks of the RV show.  It thins out some after the show is over, but there are still lots and lots of people camping free in the desert, riding 4 wheelers and dirt bikes, hikers, rock hounds looking for precious gems and stones and people with metal detectors looking for gold, which they say is not unusual to find.  

A group of campers gathering for the daily 4:00 pm happy hour.  Seems to be a tradition among the snowbirds everywhere.  A lot of groups form a big circle like the old time wagon trains and do all their partying and socializing.

There are lots of signs and flags and windsocks and such to let others know where they are and how to find the folks they are looking for.  This one was kind of cute with a picture of a kangaroo bounding over the Hoover Dam.  For those who don't know, Bounders are a brand of RV.

There was a huge group of Ham Radio operators with lots of big, tall antennas.  You really didn't need a sign to find your way to them.  A couple years ago when we were here, there was a very large group of single women RVers.  Some of the RV dealers in town sent out a couple nice looking young men to put on seminars for them about RV maintainance and other topics.

This guy had my favorite landmark for knowing where I was at when I was out hiking.  Palm tree on top of his bus with an American flag on top of that, and all lit up at night.  It was like having a north star to find your way home by.

I think this guy was here five years ago when we were here and probably every year since.  Check out the name at the top of the bus, "The Cat Drag'd Inn".  The Canadian flag was really well worn, much like the rest of his rig, but it was getting him where he wanted to go.

This sign was next to a little travel trailer with a bunch of dirt bikes parked around it.

Views of a mobile city in the desert at dusk.

Beer Belly's where you can get a belly full.  Beer Belly's Adult Day Care.  Hmmm.  Well, they do have a fence and porta potties.  It should be okay to leave Grandpa here for a while, so I can check out all the goodies at the flea market.  There was the Sheet House where they were selling sheets and such and across from them was a sign that said, "We pile it deeper and sell it cheaper".  That sounds like way too much work to me.  Some of the foods they were selling included deep fried frog legs, bacon lemonade, alligator-on-a-stick and shark-on-a-stick,

We ate at Silly Al's one day and had one of his famous pizzas, the gargantuan size.  It was as big as the table and delicious.  We had three big meals from it.  Another day we shared a seafood platter at Grubstake's and took home more leftovers than we ate.  Also, very good. but enough for at least four people.  We were certainly not up for trying any of their Food Challenges.

1953 Flexible Bus.   Lots of neat old school buses, Greyhounds and Trailways made over into campers.

There are 36 species of rattlesnakes and they live only in North and South America.  13 live in Arizona, more than any other state.  Less than 1% of rattlesnake bites result in human deaths.

We went through the little museum in the original adobe building that was the Tyson Wells Stagecoach stop, the beginning of Quartzsite.  There was a story here about a man who was born at the stagecoach station in 1894 and was elected judge for eight terms.  He claimed to have married over 37,000 couples, including some famous Hollywood couples.  There was a three day waiting period in California, so people just drove over the border to get married.  He would be in the middle of a trial and interrupt it to marry couples who just showed up.  He said love couldn't wait and then they would continue on with the trial.

Think about your children or grandchildren or even yourself growing up, when you read these.  

It's hard to wrap your mind around a child that age having so much responsibility and hard work to do.

Harsh punishments for breaking the school rules in 1848 and a few odd rules, too.

Outside the museum was an entire miniature village built by a man who moved here from Washington in 1970.  He built his own home from stones in the desert.  Then he built a model fishing village and lighthouse he remembered from the summers of his childhood and the farm home and buildings from where he was born in North Carolina and an English castle.

View out our window.

Desert view, campers in the far distance.

Another view from our campsite.

This one's just for you Julie.  Check it out.  It's a Transit Connect Mini Camper customized by B & C RV and Marine Service.  It was the cutest little thing.

The desert is very pretty.

A few of my favorite t-shirts.  I hope my granddaughter doesn't figure this out, or I'll never win again.

And Grandpa would probably agree with that.

This is the huge tent put up during the RV show.  It is full of every kind of gadget and information that an RVer could possibly dream of wanting and then some.  One interesting thing I saw in there was the aanr booth, American Association of Nude Recreation -- the credible voice of reason for nude recreation since 1931.  Hmmm.  We were at a nude beach once in the Virgin Islands.  All I can say is, "Old people got no business being nude in public, or maybe even in private for that matter.  It's just not a pretty sight.  Like the song says, "I Just Don't Look Good Naked Anymore."  If you haven't heard it, you should check it out.  It's probably on You Tube.  It's pretty funny.  I took this picture a couple days after the show when the vendors were all gone and they were getting ready to take down the tent.

Oh yeah, I almost forgot.  We really actually did it.  

Out with the old and in with the new!

It's a 2013 Palazzo by Thor (diesel) with an extra drop down bed over the front seats, three TVs (one outside), a bath and a half and lots of other cool stuff.  But the best part is lots more storage.  John was getting a little bit concerned, because we found a few things not working quite right.  But when we got down to Yuma, we made an appointment to get everything fixed, adjusted, tweaked, etc.  Then we got him a buffet and a beer and he started to relax.  As they say in Jamaica, "Every little thing's gonna be alright, alright."  We checked into a resort in Yuma and will be staying here, enjoying the sunshine for a month.  Yuma claims to be the sunniest city in the world with over 339 days of sunshine each year and over 80,000 part-time residents here to enjoy it.  Hope you folks up north are getting some sunshine and a little warmer weather!  As we left Quartzsite and got closer to Yuma the scenery changed from desert to lush green fields due to irrigation from the Colorado River.  The main crops here are cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, all varieties of lettuce, date palm orchards and citrus orchards.  At our campground of 1400 spaces, most spaces have their own citrus tree, orange, grapefruit or lemon. 

Over and Out,