January, February, March: busy

Trip Start Oct 14, 2013
Trip End Apr 13, 2014

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Flag of United States  , Arizona
Tuesday, March 18, 2014

This blog covers the period from the beginning of January to the second week of March.

Yuma's weather during January, February, and March has been incredible. Temperatures were in the mid 20s, most days were cloud-free, and the humidity was about 20%. Today’s humidity is 5% ! Life has been busy since the first of the year. Karen and I say that there are not enough hours in the day for everything we want to do. We have been volunteering in the park, doing setup and basically anything else that needs to be done. I have been taking the photos for the Palms website. It has kept us busy, too busy sometimes, but we volunteer because we enjoy being busy and meeting people. Through the week Karen does aqua Zumba, line dancing, and Zumba Santao; I shuffleboard and do laps in the pool. Karen also goes to the weekly girls’ Bunco night and the weekly community group.

We joined the park hiking group. The desert has so many things to see and every hike is different. In early January about 12 of us went on our first hike up Telegraph Hill, a climb of about 300 meters. It was a great hike with wonderful views, but the next day we both felt like we had climbed to the moon because our legs were so sore we could barely walk. We did a full moon desert walk in the KOFA National Park with a guide from the Arizona Fish and Wildlife Department, what a great hike with the full moon overhead. We didn’t see any snakes or scorpions, or any other wildlife but the guide kept us interested with information about the flora and fauna.

We have been doing lots of biking, Yuma is a great place to cycle. There are about 110 km of good cycling on the paths beside the irrigation canals. Some of the paths are paved, otherwise the paths are hard packed sand.

Tuesday is our 'date’ night, and whenever we could we went out for dinner and a movie. Movies here are a good deal, just $5 each. We have seen The Hobbit, Saving Mr. Banks, Gravity (which was just terrible, not sure why it was nominated for awards. Even George Clooney leaves halfway through the movie.) and 3 Days to Kill. Other than Gravity, we enjoyed the movies.

We have been doing Karaoke every Wednesday evening, not singing just volunteering. The crowds have grown every week and the semifinals had over 600 people attending. The finale had close to 900 people in attendance.

The same night as our first hike we went to a dinner and dance that had a Mobster theme; Karen and I dressed for the 1920s as did everyone else. There were some great costumes. Every month there's a dinner and dance. Every other Saturday there's a burger bash with food and music. Then there are other scheduled events. Hardly a day goes by that there isn't something to attend in the park.
The biweekly concerts in our park started in January, so we became even busier. Bowzer, from Sha-Na-Na, performed and stayed for the burger bash and antique car show. Gordon Lightfoot was also here but his show was so disappointing that people walked out. The last big concert was Mickey Gilley. He put on a superb show, he's a great entertainer.

We have been traveling to Los Algodones, Mexico by ourselves and with friends, it’s a great place to shop, relax, eat some Mexican food, and have a large Margarita or a cold beer. Karen had a new dental crown and she is very happy, it cost 70% less than home. She also had a new set of retainers made, again 70% less than home. We had 2 stained glass panels made for Star2 and they look great in the door, they were so much cheaper than home.

One of the highlights this season was the farm tour. We went with Bud and Maria, our friends from BC, to a farm tour in El Centro. For $20.00 each we toured the agricultural research farm run by the University of California. The first couple hours was an informative presentation about farming in the area. Then we were served an incredible chef’s salad. In the afternoon we actually went into the fields where we could pick as much produce as we wanted: broccoli, cauliflower, beets, leaf lettuce, romaine lettuce, radishes, daikon radish, cabbage, celery, etc, etc. Then it was back to the lunch area for ice cream sundaes. All for $20, amazing.

We went to the Yuma Air show this past weekend, Wow. Yuma is the Marine air base in Arizona and they have the F35 planes here, what an amazing aircraft. This is the plane that Canada is supposed to be getting to replace the F18s. There are all types of jets and helicopters along with wing walkers, Red Bull chopper, plus other private planes. There was also the static displays that you could walk onto to see what the aircraft are like.

Things have started winding down but there is so much going on that we still have to pick and choose what to do. There are going away parties everywhere and no one wants to leave for home yet.  We plan on leaving about March 28th, heading for home.

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Bruce on

What an awesome time you two are having. I hope next year Debbie and I can drive down for a week to see you guys.

Barb Samson on

Glad you are enjoying yourselves, coming home for a rest??? You send so many interesting pictures and comments. I wish I had been there to see Mickey Gilley, he is great, I will save his picture. Have a great trip back home. lol

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