Wednesday, December 23, 2015


We've always wondered about the Borrego Springs area in California. We found a quiet place to park on BLM land about 5 miles outside of the town. It's always nice to find free camping that is also clean and safe. Borrego Springs is a little oasis completely surrounded by Anza-Borrego State Park. We were amazed as we drove around the town to see the 130 sculptures by the artist, Ricardo Breceda. 

Me standing by the 350 ft long dragon

Our motorhome at Lost Dutchman State Park
We traveled to Apache Jct., AZ to be near my parents for a couple of weeks and have Thanksgiving together. We camped at Lost Dutchman State Park which is about a 16 mile drive from them.
My dad has Alzheimers so I was wondering if he would know us. He did, but said he hadn't seen me in years. He apparently remembers me as a younger woman because he wouldn't stop commenting how much older and bigger I looked. Otherwise it was good to be near and give some support. We'll return for another couple of weeks in February.
Dad and Mom
Brother Curt 
My brother, Curt, delivers lightweight RVs for Forest River out of Indiana. Now and then he will get trips through Arizona and my parents will meet him. He happened to get a trip while we were in the area. 

Dick in his element
Dick did a 80 mile backpacking trip along the first two sections of The Grand Enchantment Trail. His comment was "This isn't the best time of year for gets dark at 5 o'clock so you have to be in your tent for 13 hours." There wasn't much of a trail and he had to deal with being poked and prodded by everything that grows in the desert.

While Dick was hiking I stopped at the Superstition Mtn Museum. We pass by it when we stay at Lost Dutchman State Park. I love chapels and expecting to go inside to sit in silence I was surprised to find a statue of Elvis on stage and posters lining the walls of western motion pictures and television that were filmed in the area over a 45 year period, including "Charro" which starred Elvis Presley. 

We've been trying out several of the Escapees RV Parks in Arizona. The price is right for boon-docking at $5.00/night. Rover's Roost, located in Casa Grande, was pleasant most of the time but when the wind is just right you can hardly stand the smell. Down the road there is a big dairy feedlot consisting of around 2500 HolsteinsWe drove past the miles of cattle standing in mud (or manure) and it was so awful. Seeing and smelling this will make you rethink eating meat or dairy products. INTERESTING BOOK: MAD COWBOY by Howard Lyman

Ed and Dick 
The good news about staying the night at Rover's Roost was meeting up with Ed Trautwein, who happened to be there too. We enjoyed catching up. We met him several years ago while traveling in New Mexico and meet up with him now and then in our travels. 

The Finlaysons visiting us for an evening
We headed for Tucson to meet up with Nancy and George Finlayson who we hadn't seen since last winter in Florida. The next day we got out of our comfort zone - Dick went mountain biking with George and uncoordinated me went to a line dancing class with Nancy. After Dick saw George do a face plant he decided he just wasn't into mountain biking. The Desert Trails RV Park where they were staying had so many activities. One evening we listened to a blues group at the park - Angel Diamond and the Blues Disciples. 

We were all curious about Biosphere 2, a glass enclosed facility with 6,500 windows. So we drove north out of Tucson to take a tour. We arrived in a snowstorm. Dick's comment was, "I know what this place is, we're inside a big snow globe."
Biosphere 2 trip
Planet Earth is Biosphere 1 and Biosphere 2 is a research facility used to study ecosystem processes under controlled conditions. In 1991, eight people "Biospherians" were sealed inside for two years to test survivability and to see if they could develop and live in a self-sustaining colony. I just ordered the book The Human Experiment written by Jane Poynter, one of the Biospherians. She has also given a TED Talk if you want to check it out.

We are now in Benson, Arizona to be with Michigan friends, Diane and Dean Tobias, for Christmas week. We have been busy exploring the area - biking, hiking etc.... That's the reason I'm way behind on blogging. Not complaining. We always enjoy doing things with them.
Biking the Julian Wash Bikepath Youtube of the bikeway
Hiking in Chiricahua National Monument 
Visiting Tombstone

 Just some extras I couldn't leave out:
We had a short but sweet visit from Lisa & Carl, friends from home, as they passed through
Tucson on their way to Mexico. The picture above explains why!!!

Boothill Graveyard in Tombstone
Unique Rattlesnake bridge downtown Tucson


BOO enjoying his Christmas tree


  1. Hey there, you two ramblers! Nothing about your four legged residents though....I did enjoy entirely the travel - especially the Tucson area stuff - great area. And the Biosphere = neat! Your dad seems to be doing well with the alzheimers in his wife. The Dr who helped my dad during those years - said to me - when you visit - simply go where he is. No point in trying to update, correct, etc. Just ask about what happened then - or next - and what the weather was for whatever - as you would if you were both talking of yesterday. The patient will enjoy your visit - and so will you - because that is where he/she lives. Best advice I have ever gotten for an Alz patient relationship! Bless you both and have a grand and lovely holiday - all through. How is Maggie? Still north in Seattle area? Thank goodness for computers and smart phones, etc!
    with love and joy and peace, Jean (Our huge (100+) robins who have eaten every single berry in Oakwood - headed south in a large circling flight this morning. REALLY quiet now. The temp today - 65 degrees. I wonder what THEY know? hugs!

  2. Singing Wind Bookstore outside Benson, AZ if she is still running it!