Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Utah- A Land Of Big Ideas

Everyone has seen the pictures in magazines. We've all watched the PBS or Travel Channel documentaries. But as we approached Kanab, Utah from the East on Highway 89, there was nothing that could have prepared us for what we found when we passed through these red walls, standing tall against that un-photo shopped blue sky.( please click on all the pictures for full effect. thanks )

When you drive to work past sights like this,
you know God was in a good mood the day He created the world.

After the first two days in Kanab, we did almost nothing about setting up housekeeping, so eager were we to get out and explore the area we'll be living in for the next several months. Once our huge snowstorm (see blog entry April1,2010) went away, we began driving around. With Christie Smith as our guide and fellow Geocacher, we set out.

I can't climb very well anymore but I found my share of treasures and managed to document them. The biggest find was the discovery that it's almost impossible to take a bad picture here. Here's one of Chris and Jim after finding a cache.
Later I simply had to stop for a "framed shot".
It wasn't until I got home that I realized my shutter failed to open all the way but look what I got!

Utah has an interesting history, quite different from the settlement of most of our country. I hope to learn more about it and share some of that with my patient followers as the season progresses. But I do know that in this land of stark contrasts, people were frugal and nothing was ever allowed to go to waste. Food storage is a way of life. The old adage make good, make over, or make do, has evolved into reuse, recycle, or re-purpose. Nature itself has taught that lesson well.

Look at those red and ocher hills above in the "Before" pictures. Similar hills stood the Anasazi and the Navajo people in good stead for homes and protection for a millennium, then they began to erode.

Now look at them a couple of million
years later in these "After" pictures.

They've been recycled or re-purposed into one of the softest places on Earth!

Clancy had a wonderful time at
Coral Pink Sand Dunes State Park. She dragged me to the top of a dune and then just stood there for a few seconds while we both caught our breath. (Not an easy thing to do as the vista was breathtaking.) Then she became ecstatic! She began racing around and around as I swiveled her extension leash, it's full length, around my head . She didn't walk or really even run she seemed to bounce. In fact, the only word we could use to describe her ebullient playfulness was an old fashioned word coined apparently just to describer Clancy that day. She frolicked in that soft powdery pink stuff.
( frolic v : to gambol merrily; to play in a frisky, light-spirited manner; romp: The children {or dogs} were frolicking in the snow.)
Yes, Clancy "gamboled merrily" She kicked it into the air and circled me as fast as her stubby little legs would let her go until she finally stopped and grinned at me, as if to say, " Warm Snow!!"

I think this is going to be a good summer!

See ya soon down a red sandy road,

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Son Rise Blessings

To all of my family, friends, and readers who are simply part of my extended family of friends,
may The Blessings of Easter be upon you as you travel whatever road life has found you on today.

See ya down the road,

Thursday, April 1, 2010

BIG Changes

There are several friends who will appreciate today's blog. Jayne, in Ireland, Cheryl in Nova Scotia, Sharon in New York and Dot ...uh.. I'm not sure where Dot is. And then, of course, Chris who's right beside me. So today''s blog, long overdue, is dedicated to those particular friends and Daddy as usual. And with a BIG thank you to Jim who helped make it possible.


( The April theme for NaBloPoMo is BIG. I am not officially signing on for the 30 days since I'm about to begin a new job and will be working evenings but I'll make a BIG effort when I can)

This past six weeks have been crazy for us; crazy in mostly good ways. First, Commodore Salazar and Buttercup came to Tucson on a business trip, buying goodies for the gift shops they stock back in California. We all got into the act and "helped" them find merchandise at the Tucson Gem Show and, since most of us weren't actually on the clock, we had a wonderful time. Naturally, they did all the work, we just kept saying "oooh look at this" enough to drive them to distraction.

Then Buttercup and Chica decided I needed a magical makeover. I'm now a redhead. But that's another story.

At the same time, The Geezer and I were in negotiations with an employer in Kanab, Utah. And we got a great job and we got all excited and we told everyone and then the job fell through when said employer was not able to further his plan to establish entertainment at his place of business. And then we got another great job a couple of blocks away!

Then BFF Charlotte came to town and we had three days of talking, wandering, talking, exploring thrift shops, talking and choosing exactly the right traditional desserts for Chica's corned beef and cabbage St. Paddy's day supper. We got that then went to the Crazy Horse RV park where my RVer friend Margie Rodgers was staying (adding, of course, one more element to the crazy theme) to pick her up for dinner. Then off we went to supper at Sage and Chica's with Lone Duck, The Great Scott, his beautiful assistant Lee and adorable one year old apprentice, Connor and everyone's favorite African-Irishman Father O. (We convinced them that pistachio and mint chocolate chip ice cream and cream puffs were traditional Irish desserts by calling the delectable pastries Blarney Puffs and pointing out the color of the frozen desserts.)

Both friends left the next day but we had lunch with John and Judy Long another Workamper couple that very day.


Then the mad rush began. We had less than 2 weeks to ;

1 get a whole lot of work done on the rig
2 get the tow package transferred from our faithful Jeep, which we were finally saying goodbye to,
over to our new to us Subaru Outback
3 have final doctor's appointments
4 get new glasses for both of us
5 have a last supper with Lone Duck, Chica, and Sage Words


And we're off...................almost! Suddenly realized that night we had missed one critical appointment. So had to do it the morning we were leaving. Then get the gas and propane and... we didn't tell the kids but we spent the first night in - Tucson where we ran into Bobbie and Jim Chapman on the BLM land!


And we're off...all the way to Tempe to get our windshield replaced. We found a good Mexican restaurant for lunch while they did that, situated next to a hair salon. We quizzed the ladies unmercifully as to their skill with trimming and shaping a full beard (the last person who said she knew how to do a full length beard caused great gnashing of teeth.) And The Geez decided to trust them with his persona. Once I saw they were doing a good job I got my lovely red locks shorn as well.

Back on the road we went to the Escapes RV park in Wickenburg and spent a quiet pleasant 3 days riding around the area and being assured the route we planned to take to Kanab was a good one.


I had a near death experience on a mountain road in Colorado when I was 11 years old. Okay, I can hear my Mother saying right now to "quit being so dramatic and stop playing Sarah Heartburn". I'm sure Dad was in complete control of the car at every moment and that he wouldn't have let us go off the cliff where there were no guardrails. But MY Daddy wasn't driving the cars coming around those blind curves where you had to blow your horn to make sure there was no one coming the other way. Anyway, that experience has made it very hard for me to enjoy the gorgeous scenery afforded on mountain roads for my entire life. I once actually walked almost 3 miles down a road we had previously driven up because I knew I'd never get down it with my sanity intact.

So to make a long story short (I have a habit of saying that awfully late into a narrative, don't I?), when we heard there was a storm heading for Utah, which would bring rain and snow, we decided we needed to get further up the road than planned on Monday. We skipped playing tourist and proceeded up the steep twisting road they said RVs take all the time. Ri ..i..ght!

I didn't see a thing for almost 100 miles. I began by crocheting to keep from looking out the window then gave up and sat on the couch with my eyes closed but unable to sleep because I wanted to be able to scream "I love you!" to The Geez as we hurtled to our final destination off a curve.

Okay, obviously we survived.


Tuesday all the weather reports sounded even more dire; big snowstorm on the way, heavy winds gusting to 40 or 50mph. Not something we wanted to be driving a motor home in on a mountain road . So we gave up the Grand Canyon in favor of racing to Kanab ahead of the storm. The winds were strong but doable and we arrived around noon yesterday and battened down the hatches, right next to Chris.

The sky was ominously dark and heavy with clouds. The wind died down a bit during the night and the snow began to fall just as predicted. When we got up this morning I decided you should see what I did on the first morning of my stay in Kanab, Utah for our SUMMER job. While The Geez and Clancy romped in the white stuff I built a snowman! See above.

As they say in the forwards "Scroll Down"

(click on picture)


In the world of one inch scale Doll Houses. Perception is everything!

April Fool!

See ya down the road,