Sunday, 19 January 2020

Sunday, Jan 19th

A nice day, windy, but nice today.  The night time temp was pleasant as well, so it seems to be gradually warming up.  That will likely mean more critters will start to become active soon, especially the reptiles, being the cold blooded ones.
  I got out in time to take in the the service in the park this morning.  It has been a while owing to other commitments, but it was a nice sermon today and there was good attendance [for us].  After Marg and I went out to the Mesa marketplace where I sold my books and bought new ones.  The book seller was busy, but that was not the case with all of the vendors.  The vendors must be taking a hit with the reduced traffic at the market this year.  There were lots of retailers commenting on the  reduced presence of snowbirds last year and it's even slower now.  That is certainly the case with us, but it must be with American snowbirds as well.
  After we stopped at the Tractor store where I returned some gasket material I bought yesterday and did not use.  The repairs I made on the golf cart have Marg saying it drives like a new one.  Not sure about that but it is noticeably better.  Then it was on to Harbor Freight where I used 3 coupons, two for better pricing on cable ties and the third a 20% off on my largest purchase.  They allow the discount or a free item and as I didn't need any of the ones I had a coupon for, I opted for the discount.  Marg went to Big Lots right next door and she had a handful of things she needed, so a good stop.
  Back home for a bite of lunch.  Desert was some of the lemon cake Marg made yesterday and it was very nice.  Apparently she used 4 lemons on the cake and frosting.  While we were sitting out in the breezeway our purchasers drove by, stopping to show her brother what they are buying.  Marg offered them to come in, but they were in a hurry.  After Marg asked me to look at a drying rack that was falling apart.  Using about a dozen of the cable ties and half a ball of string I got it secured.  Would probably been easier to chuck it and get a new one, but we'll see how long it holds together. 
  Somewhere along the afternoon Marg was chatting with a lady in the park who said they had cancelled their golf game for tomorrow.  Her husband is a good player and she was feeling sad for him, when Marg said we were going and only had a threesome tomorrow.  Well long story short, it is now a foursome.  I will be driving and our departure will be about 11:30 for a 12:40 tee time.  That will put us on the road home about rush hour, but we think it will be reduced traffic, being MLK day.  At least I will be in the HOV lane having passengers, so it should be OK.
  We went for happy at Blankes and there were only a half dozen folks, so a nice one.  Marg was helping Doris with her Facebook page as it has not been working.  She isn't getting any info about any stuff and has few friends.  It was quite a mess with a couple hundred messages and lots of bogus friend requests, so we'll see how it goes now,  Not really sure the problem is fixed yet as Marg sent out some friend requests that have not appeared.
  After supper we went to ice cream social. We both had ice cream in a dish, I believe Marg had a piece of cake as well.  This too was well attended.  A lot of people here are watching football today as it is playoffs to see who goes to the Superbowl game.  After ice cream Kenny and I went to play some pool with a couple other fellows and it was a fun event, lots of laughs.

Saturday, 18 January 2020

Saturday, Jan 18th

A nice day in the valley, it took a while to warm up, but I saw 19C on the truck when I was out.  In the sun today it was very nice, shirt sleeve weather.
  I got mobile early enough to go for breakfast in the hall this morning:  pancakes, eggs, bacon.  There were other options, but having not been for a while, I definitely wanted the pancakes.  I sat with some friends, one of whom I gave one of my pieces of bacon as I usually do when they give me three.  You know already that Marg did not go for breakfast, not only is it not her favourite meal, she doesn't really even acknowledge it most of the time.
  When I went back home Marg was up and about having gorged herself on a yogurt an cup of coffee.  Apparently the electric bill arrived while I was gone and with the cold nights lower than average days we expected it to be higher, so the $133 was no big surprise.  Marg had been warning me about the temp in our place, but my response was I didn't come here to sleep in the cold. We needed a few things, so shortly after my return she went out to Safeway for groceries.  Ever since Albertsons took over Safeway here, she prefers it for her regular grocery trips.  She had been clipping coupons for the last while so when combined with her safeway loyalty discounts, the grocery bill was almost half covered by the savings.
  I decided to do something with the brakes on the golf cart as they have been squawking pretty bad.  I pulled the first side and it went pretty well.  One of the things I discovered was one of the keepers  [snap ring] on brake shoe retaining pin was distorted and not stabilizing the shoe.  I went out to get some new ones, which proved more difficult than I anticipated so after the auto parts store I went to Ace Hardware and then the Tractor store.  By the time I finished I had the keepers and rubber washers to try and damper the noise.  Then I took sandpaper to the shoes to take the glazing off the shoes and then ran it around the drum.  I thought dust might be part of the problem, so I cleaned the drums with brake clean and wiped them out.  Putting it all back together the brakes worked perfect, no noise even on hard or panic stops.  I did lose some time looking for a retaining washer, that I had put on the rear spring, so I wouldn't lose it.  Can you believe that a little over an hour and forgot where I put it.  When I was taking off the passenger drum I had the puller adjusted to put on a lot of pulling pressure and then beat on the drum with a rubber mallet.  Man it came flying off the axle.  When I reassembled it I wrapped tape around the drum to see if that helps dampen the sound.  A quick test run and it stops perfect and totally silent.
  Kenny and Doris stopped by to seen what we were up to and ask if we wanted Chinese buffet for supper.  Then Marg asked them to stay for happy.  Well that attracted another couple, so we had anther small group for happy hour. They also asked a third couple, but one said yes, the other no, so they never joined us.
  The buffet was busy but not bad for a Saturday night on a long weekend.  MLK day is on Monday.  The food was great as always and Doris had coupons, so we got a good deal on dinner.

Friday, 17 January 2020

Friday, Jan 17th

  A nice day in the valley.  The sun shone and we all took advantage of the day.  Tomorrow is the start of the long weekend here, MLK day on Monday.
  Marg did some laundry this morning.  Good day for it with the sun out to dry it.  I did a few maintenance things around the place, it seems there is always something.  Then mid-morning I went to pick up Kenny at; the garage down the road.  He noticed a noise in his front end and suspected a wheel bearing or assembly on his Explorer.  He did one back in Kansas at the Ford dealer that cost him $500, the garage here is $300, so he was happy.  Just before noon I took him back to pick it up.  It wasn't far, just up Ironwood at the Trail.  I stopped on the way back to get two lottery tickets, Mega Millions & Power Ball.  I told the clerk they sold me the wrong ones last week, I wanted to buy the lucky ones.  He just laughed and said, so did he.
  Lunch was some kind of jumbo salad and deviled eggs.  It was nice of her to dress up the eggs like that, knowing how much I like deviled eggs, kind of makes up for having salad.  LOL 
  In the afternoon Marg finished the laundry and had a few visitors.  Marg drove me to the pool room and checked the mail, none as usual.  It must be piling up back home.  I played some pool and for the most part my game was good today.  There were two tables going, so not bad considering all the things going on.  There were quite a few people in the pool today, so water aerobics will likely start soon.  That will be good as Marg really enjoys the pool time.
  We had happy at our place today, it was a small group, which was nice.  It was early today, 3 PM, to allow for people going to the sit down dinner in the hall.  We had tickets to as did about 90 or 100 other people.  It was the event I had consented to work at as an usher.  I had to go in a bit early to help get things set up, no heavy lifting there.  One of my jobs was filling water glasses on the table after the ice was in them, another was bringing out trays of cake to help the lady putting them on tables.  You know heavy responsibility stuff.  Once the doors opened there were two of us who escorted ladies to the table.  Some of the guys made comments, like what about me.  Funny guys!  Supper was pork chops, mashed potato, carrots, a piece of cake.  Patti to be funny at the Thursday coffee klatch announced the event, saying this year there would be apple sauce on the tables to go with the pork chops - for Dave.  Hah!
  Helped a bit with the clean up and then back to our place to post the pictures I took.

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Thursday, Jan 16th

It was an overcast day and the little bit of rain forecast for the valley didn't happen.  From the weather reports it looks like they got measurable amounts east of the mountains and in the high country light snowfall.
  We started the morning going to the coffee klatch.  It was well attended and our turn to pick a donut was late in the process.  It was fortunate that the choices were still very good.  After the coffee, there was a full board meeting of the tenants association, so Marg stayed for that while I walked home.  We went out once this was done as I wanted a haircut.  Marg went with me and I dropped her off at TJ Max at Superstition mall.  The Mexican barbershop wasn't too busy and I had the same young gal as last month, who does a decent job. Picking Marg up after, she had a few things in a small bag, so I would rate that as limited success.  We planned to eat out on the way home, but changed our minds and got take away that we brought home for lunch.
  After lunch Marg chilled for a bit as she walked quite a bit this morning and didn't want to overdo it.  I went to play pool with 3 other guys and we had lots of good games and some laughs.  One of the challenges when playing with seniors is to keep the shooting order straight, because it can and often does change from game to game.  At one point the only way to deal with it today was to give everyone a number for their place in the order.  Anyway it got so we were laughing about it.
  When I got back we had a facetime with Brennan, Jess, & Paityn.  It was so good to see them and chat with them.  Paityn kept saying hi and waving to us, we were so glad she remembered us.  It really brightened up our day.  The only unfortunate thing was the weather back home, where it is bitterly cold.  Hope it warms up for them soon.  Earlier in the day we had a bit of a late lunch, so it was a lighter supper tonight.  It's funny how we almost always have a similar idea on things like this.  I guess that is what 50 years of living together do.  LOL
  After supper we went to the animal races tonight.  It was a slow start for us, but I won 4 of the 8 races and Marg won 3, but on one of them she had doubled up her betting, so it was like 4.  They were short one of the people who help run the races and tell jokes between them, so Clyde asked me to fill in on a few.  I told jokes for 3 of the breaks and they went over pretty well, so that was a winner for me.
  The weather is supposed to start improving here, so fingers crossed. 

Wednesday, 15 January 2020

Wednesday, Jan 15th

A nicer day even though it was chilly until the sun came up.  The rest of the day was very nice, I think in the 70's but started to cloud over a bit in the late afternoon.
  It was golf morning in the park when we all go to Apache Sun where we share a tee time with another park.  There were 18 to play this morning.  Gerry C came early and we left shortly after so we were the first ones at the course, something that has not happened before.  It was cool, but not too bad in the sun, the dew lay heavy on the turf.  We ride together and ended up paired with two very good players.  There was no one in front for a few holes, so our pace of play was about the quickest I have ever played for 9 holes.  We finished in about 90 or so minutes, incredible for a foursome.  On the fourth hole where everyone throws in a dollar for long putt we had a carry-over from last week of $14.  I hit a great chip out of the sand and holed my 8 foot putt to win the moola, $32 in total.  I also got a four to par the hole.  I had a decent score as well [for me that is] and it was a fun group to play with today.  This was my first round at the course this year and I was disappointed to learn the tortoise is no longer on the fourth hole.  It was a zero turtle day, so I never went in the water.  Somehow Gerry did, can't figure that out as he knows the turtle theory.  LOL
  Marg did up a couple loads of laundry in the morning and got things caught up.  She also had visitors for part of the time, so was very busy.  When I got back Marg had been doing bills and my charge for the golf was already on the account.  We had earned enough points that she applied them as a payment, so told me my round of golf was free today.  Lets see, if I made money at it today is it time to turn Pro?  Then we went to the Ranch market for veggies and oranges, which are awesome.  On returning home we had a bite of lunch.  Marg had made biscuits in the oven and they were delicious.  I love them fresh out of the oven like that.
  After lunch I went to play pool, ended up playing with a guy I really enjoy playing.  He's a good player, but had a poor start.  I eased off a bit after 3 wins and then he got his act together and then I couldn't get it together for a win.  I think there was a lesson in there someplace.  LOL
  Marg had a busy afternoon with lots of visitors.  She has lots of good friends here and it seems there is always someone dropping by.  Many people walk around the park, especially those with dogs.  One of them has left a package of dog treats here, so Marg is pretty popular with the dogs as well.  Sometime in the midst of this she got a dinner into the slow cooker for us.
  When I got back we went to happy hour.  It was on the other side of the park and the couple hosting are well known for their craft creations.  They do some amazing stuff, especially Kokopelli's.  There was  large group at happy today and it was a fun event.  After happy it was supper time.  We were just midway through supper when a couple stopped in to give us a couple pieces of lemon meringue pie which was very nice.
  After supper I went to play poker and Marg went to a fire in the big area in the middle of the walking track.  It seems some of the folks got enough wood to make a fire for folks to sit around and roast marshmallows.  It was something new here and was open to anyone.  Marg estimated they had about 40 people there, so it was a good time.  At poker we had too many for one table but not enough for two, so a few guys never got to play.  Apparently they went to the fire.  Financially poker was not a paying proposition, I donated tonight.

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Tuesday, Jan 14th

  A nicer day today with the high temp reaching 70 F or maybe even a degree or two more.  It ended up being a shorts day around noon and in the afternoon.
  One of my FB friends had a couple of pictures from home of tossing hot water in the air then it freezes right in the air before reaching the ground.  This only happens when its really cold and with the temperature around the minus 40 mark, yesterday qualified.  I showed the picture to a few people around the park who could hardly believe it, in fact one asked to be copied with it.
  After lunch I went to help Kenny with his desk.  He has one in the breezeway and it has weathered on the top so it is really rough. He wants to put a covering on the desk top, so we sanded it smooth to get a better surface for the adhesive and new material.
  We were sitting around and had not heard from the dealership about mid afternoon.  With golf tomorrow morning I needed my clubs, so we went down to the dealership and take them from the back of the truck.  Just prior to our arrival our service rep. got the keys and the work order from the shop, now that is kismet or fate.  Marg went in to the customer lounge for a coffee while I took the rental car back to Enterprise.  It was an easy return, they checked the vehicle and mileage then said that was all, I could go.  The final bill was emailed to me and all I had to pay was the $7 a day, so $42 in total.  She said with my commitment to pay that amount at the start, even the taxes would be billed to the dealership.  I think the dealerships share was about $300.
  They gave me a ride back to the dealership where the paperwork was all done and we paid nothing.  Apparently the valve body is where all of the electronics are for the transmission.  The dealer had to provide the electronic test profile of the problem to Chrysler before they could replace it as the total cost was somewhere over $2,300.  They also had to provide copies of my drivers license and registration to prove I was a winter visitor, not a permanent resident here.  Not sure what that is about, but I do know they will not sell us new vehicles here to take to Canada as there is no warranty if we do that.
  We got back to our place in time for happy hour.  It was at Blanke's so well attended.  After happy we went to Taco Bell for a quick bite as it was bingo night.  Marg had her usual $5 meal box, I had a burrito combo.  We had to be back for Marg to sell cards for 6 o'clock.  I went down a bit later and we contributed tonight.  The sad tale is we were both so close, but that is not where the cash is.  I go because I also have a job, I sell the double daub cards at intermission and help put stuff away at the end.  Marg stays to wipe down the tables with a sanitizing solution after the games.  One of the people who helped tidy up commented last week that it seemed the only volunteers were the people least healthy enough to do the job.

Monday, 13 January 2020

Monday, January 13th

The nicest day in a while.  I think temperatures got up to around 70 and were close to that before noon, so a shirt sleeve day.
  It was cool enough this morning that I made oatmeal / porridge.  We haven't had any for a while now and are almost out of the rolled oats we brought from home, so am using it sparingly.  Yes they sell it here, but it's not the same, some of it is quite coarse even after cooking and we all know how important creamy is - right?
  After eating we went out to pay for our dinner tickets on Friday.  Patti didn't want to take my money saying I was working it so got dinner free.  I have such a minor part and want to sit with friends so insisted on paying.  She gave me a towel or square to drape over my arm, kind of like a maitre de, I guess.  We went looking for jeans after that where I managed to find a nice pair of blue jeans and a pair of black ones.  I kind of need a pair of black pants on Friday and never brought any down as we packed light this year.  Marg found a couple of things she needed as well, so a productive stop.
  Lunch was back at our place and we had some nice grilled sandwiches using the new rye bread we picked up at Basha's.  It was new to us and very good.  After lunch Marg did some steaming, including the new jeans.  She also had some visitors.  I went to play pool and she never realized I took the cart.  Later she noticed it missing so called me to ask if it was missing or if I had it.  I generally don't take it, but had to take the laptop with me so today was the exception.  Played with some good guys today and we had some laughs.  I think I won more than lost, so that was good too.
  The dealership called to say the repair was approved by Chrysler and the truck should be done by tomorrow.  Apparently the part alone is $2,000 so they needed this prior approval.  I asked about the car to be certain they extended the rental on it.  Even though it is only $7 a day, I will be dealing with the dealership back home as I don't think I should be paying anything. Tomorrow will make it a week since I took it in.
  We went to happy hour tonight and there were quite a few there, possibly 2 dozen.  We also got notice from the couples hosting tomorrow and Wednesday, so that was a bonus.  We are probably due to host again, so will consider it as the week progresses, after all we live on Happy Hour Lane.