Sunday, 10 February 2019

Jan 28 -Jan 31, 2019 Our last week with friends at High Chaparral

Jan 28
I mentioned in the last post that I had gotten a phone number for an old friend I worked with many years ago, Paul and his wife Gloria, through their son Spencer. We are driving into Casa Grande today to check out where they are staying at Sundance 1 RV Resort. It sounds like a nice place and from what I saw online it looks beautiful. We arrived at the front gate about 11:30 with directions to their site from Paul. They got their rig washed this morning so it's great timing for pictures lol.
Pretty grand entrance.

Paul & Gloria, me & Margaret.

We found their site easily and with hugs and handshakes we said hello. They are also retired and enjoying some warmer winter weather in Arizona. It's good to see them again and it has been a long time since we have talked. Les and I last bumped into them in Jasper on a bike trip in 2014, I think. So it has been a long time but I always stayed up to date through their son with what they are up to. We had a great chat and then they made some great burgers and salad for lunch. We didn't expect lunch so thanks guys for doing that. After lunch we decided to walk around the resort to have a look at the amenities. We hadn't walked far and we bumped into some friends of theirs and another lady on a bike. Turns out the lady on the bike is from Bonnyville too! Now that's a small world moment again. We chatted a bit and then moved on with the walking tour.
Need this stage for Randy (Cowboy) to perform. Great sound in there.

RC car racing?? These things do 70km/h or 45 mph !!

Beauty pickleball courts, so clean and ball dispensers on the fence.

We really enjoyed the walk around the resort and the chance to catch up a bit. When we got back to their rig I suggested we grab a beer at Thirsty Donkey. They have never been there so yeh, they're up for it and it's not too far away. We only stopped for one pint and then with hugs and handshakes we said see ya later to Paul & Gloria. We are both busy this week and they are moving to another park on Thursday so we will try another get together but not sure. We will both be in the Okanagan Valley at the end of March so hopefully catch up then. Great to see you both!
We drove back to our rig and just relaxed for the evening at home.
Jan 29
We have been doing some dreaming/planning for some possible upgrades or changes to our truck or trailer so that we can include an ATV and maybe a motorcycle of some type. I would really like to have the Harley down here or even a dual sport bike of some kind. It's not a "need" but a "maybe nice to have" type thing so we will go slow and make an informed decision. So unlike me lol. For some fun today we asked Randy & Shelley if they want to drive into Phoenix and look at a Freightliner M2 at the dealership off of I 10. They are good to go so we left Chaparral about 10 am for the short trip to Phoenix, about 50 minutes. In Randy's work life he was involved with securing trucks for the Tri-Cities utility company and he agrees they are a good rig to look at. All the trucks are locked and I wasn't ready for a salesman and all the details anyway so we checked in at the desk and just self toured the lot. Image result for freightliner m2 
I didn't take any pictures but there were some beauty trucks on the lot. (borrowed this from the web) One of them even had alligator seats! Nice!! Leslie got a good image of what I'm dreaming of so that helps when we're discussing possible changes. The trucks are the same width as the dually but just much taller, I'm wearin' her down lol. We started heading back to Casa Grande for lunch when someone suggested looking at new RVs at La Mesa RV. Well of course we should go look. With a sketchy U turn on I-10 we were on our way. Again no pictures!! WTH? We toured some toy haulers and some fancy motorhomes but didn't find "the one" for either couple. Randy & Shelley would like to add a toy to their rig too. There are several parks in Arizona that you can ride right from your site in an ATV. No snap decisions though. We're all hungry by now and Leslie found that Four Peaks Brewery is not far away so that's our lunch stop. Their Kiltlifter Ale is a favourite of ours. 
Heading for the patio at Four Peaks.

Leslie, me, Randy & Shelley. Beautiful afternoon.

It was a fantastic lunch. The food, beers and service were all good making it a great stop in our minds. Leslie and I have been there before with Barry & Ailsa and it has been a hit both times. This time we drove all the way back to Chaparral. We had planned on stopping to see Paul & Gloria to play some pickleball at their resort but by the time we drove through Casa Grande it was almost supper time so we kept going. We played a quick game back at Chaparral before supper with Randy & Shelley. We had a late barbecue at our place with some steaks Leslie had fixed up earlier. Shelley brought a huge bowl of pasta salad (thanks Shelley) and we had baked potatoes and veggies so we were stuffed after that huge meal. 
The supper selfie! Great job on dinner everyone.

We moved to the softer chairs and sat back to discuss the day. Randy & Shelley are good people and we talked until quite late that night. Good meals, meeting new friends and good times. Yeah, we like this RV thing just fine. Pretty lucky to have this life.
Jan 30
On Friday we're moving to the desert at Quartzsite, Az. to join Steve & Dianne again. Yay, more good people! We need to get all the rig chores done before then because we go from full hookups to no hook ups in the desert. Leslie is doing laundry and cleaning while I do a run into Casa Grande for fuel and beer, two important travel ingredients lol. I am trying to buy an assortment of beers for a beer tasting but they just don't have the selection of a place like Total Wine does in Phoenix. I wasted an hour checking a few places and then drove back to the rig grumpy and frustrated with my complete waste of time. As usual Leslie calmed me down and together we made a plan to stop at Total Wine on the way to Q. There, my little snap show is done.
We have the last big group pickleball at 2pm, for us at least, so we geared up and headed to the courts about 1:30. Luckie, Randy, Dana & Hilda have organized a fish fry as a wind up for our group and it's a potluck too so the food should be amazing. We played a few games each and had a great time. The last game was Ken & Leslie vs Al and me. We had some fantastic rallies and at times we  didn't even care about the score we were having so much fun. Great way to cap our play at Chaparral! We went back to the rig to shower and get ready for the fish fry. Our contribution is shrimp which they are cooking in butter. Yummy.
We walked to the pavillion and there were many people there already. All the stoves and grills were firing and many dishes were already on the table. Randy is cooking battered halibut, ling cod, rock cod and potatoes/onions. Luckie & Dave are on a flat top griddle doing shrimp and blackened fish in a load of butter.
Shelley & Randy working, Leslie & I photo bombing. Fuzzy pic:(

Dave, melting butter! Luckie & Lynn making the shrimp.

Folks visiting while the meal is getting ready.

Lots of people helped with the meal and I can't mention them all but it was a fantastic group effort. Leslie took over the potatoes and onions from Randy because he had 3 pots of oil frying fish already. Everyone gathered around the tables and we enjoyed all the different kinds of fish and seafood with all the fixin's. Luckie stood on a cooler, so we can see him ;) and thanked everyone for making pickleball a fun thing to do at Chaparral and how the game has brought this group together. When Leslie & I first started in December there were 8 new players learning from Luckie, Dana & Hilda. Last Monday there were 30 people at pickleball, many had just learned or played for a month or so like us. We had 58 come out for the fish fry! Great job you guys!!
Luckie on the "stage"

We forgot to grab a pic but Hilda got up afterwards and told the crowd that due to requests from so many players that she is starting a ladies only time slot at the courts for those that are less comfortable playing against the fellas. Good stuff Hilda! Amazing what happens when you teach people the game in a less competitive atmosphere. Chaparral might need more pickleball courts in the future!
After the fabulous meal many people gathered around to visit and learn about where we are all from. Many places in Canada & USA are represented here.
Sandy & Leslie... we have new friends in Missoula!

Treated to a fabulous Az. sunset.
The crowd thinned a little and someone suggested Randy grab his guitar and play a few of his songs. Great idea! Dana also grabbed his guitar and played as well. Awesome job boys!
Randy playing and singing.

We stayed at the pavillion until about 9:30 and then headed home. What a great time we had and just a fabulous meal that everyone put together. Good times and great people!
Jan 31

We have more chores today before pulling out tomorrow. Leslie is washing all the bedding and I am flushing tanks and packing the outside stuff all except our chairs. We'll likely fit in one more happy hour ;)
All this time in Arizona and we haven't seen a roadrunner? Today that changed, one scurried past our window and Les managed to catch a pic.
Beep beep !  No coyote behind him.

We worked on our chores and made a good lunch and then around 2'ish we took our chairs over to Karen & Wayne's for a last visit with them and Tux. It's a beautiful warm day to sit outside. Warm enough the dogs didn't play much but curled up on stools for a nap, a dog's life.
Tux with a fresh haircut on his bed.
We enjoyed visiting with Karen & Wayne and hopefully we'll see them this summer when we are on Vancouver Island where they live. With big hugs and handshakes we said "see ya later" to these great new friends too.
Me, Karen with Tux, Wayne, Leslie with Margaret.

The fun doesn't stop there my friends.... we walked back to the rig, showered and got ready for supper at Thirsty Donkey with some of the pickleball crew. Everybody wants to try the armbands and 40 different beers on tap. Randy volunteered to be the driver so Leslie & I are riding with them. The rest of the gang made their own arrangements. We got our arm bands and started tasting the different beer and ciders on tap. We also ordered supper, good plan right?
Shelley's hair? Dave, Connie, Lynn, Luckie & Randy

Representing Montana.... Leo, Sandy and Duane. 
Our entertainment Bob Villa, no not the builder Bob lol.

Someone, (I think Duane) told the singer that Randy is a country singer too. Part way through his first set he asked Randy to join him onstage for a song! Cool. Randy sang with him for one song and then got to go up and play one of his own songs onstage for the crowd. Good stuff.
Randy Hamilton & Bob Villa.

Gonna miss these folks.

We had a really good time at the Thirsty Donkey and packed it in after the second set to go home. There was lots of hugs and handshakes outside while we said good bye to a great group of new friends. We certainly hope to see everyone again down the road. We'll miss this crew. Leslie even shed a tear or two :(
Randy & Shelley came over to our house for a nightcap when we got home. Randy hasn't had a shot yet so now that he got us home safe he can double down! Well, I hate to see a fella drink alone so I poured a Crown Royal from the gift exchange bottle and we all visited a bit more. We'll see Randy & Shelley on the way home it turns out. Leslie and I are planning to go back up through the Okanagan again on our way home. They live in Tri-Cities Washington and that is pretty much right on our path! We made plans that night that we'll stop in on our way home for a night or two before we cross back to Canada. Looking forward to it!
We may have had a little more fun than we needed before a travel day but it was well worth it. Never get too much of good times with great people can you? We'll miss you guys. Cheers everybody!


  1. Glad you had fun a High Chaparral with all your new friends. It will be interesting to see what rig/truck you end up with. The RV life being mobile ... ideas and realities change all the time regarding your "home on wheels".

    1. Super happy we went there, it turned out great! We may not even change trucks we're so not sure yet. Here in Q a side x side would be great to have but it's the other times when we're just carrying weight hmmm??

  2. You guys sure had a blast at High Chaparral...we new you'd like it there! I think an M2 would look great in front of that Lifestyle...just saying :)

    1. I think I would look good in an M2 in front of that Lifestyle! We'll see how things go I guess, still not as impressive as Buster! So glad we stopped there on your advice, we had a great time.

  3. Keep working her and wearing her down, you will get that M2 before you know it!

    1. I take inspiration from your spotting scope quest Jim. I can see cracks in her armour :)