Sunday, November 30, 2008

Beautiful Phoenix

We left Palm Springs on Monday, November 24th at approximately 10:00 a.m. I was sad to leave, as we really enjoyed it there. It’s a nice size – not a crazy city, there are great amenities, and the place is beautiful. But on to our next stop of Mesa, Arizona.

Our route took us along the I-10 in into the desert. We crossed the sparkling Colorado River at 11:50 a.m. into Arizona, where we had our first cactus sighting, and amazing views of the desert hills.

As we were trying to make time, we didn’t stop at Quartzite, which is supposed to be quite an interesting area. Next time!

We arrived at our RV Park, the Monte Vista, at approximately 4:00 p.m. This is a really nice park – many high end park models, including a number with balconies above their carport. Great idea, and one that we’d love to incorporate at our lot back home in Carefree.

The amenities are amazing. They have a ‘ballroom/stage/dance hall’ the size of the Alumni Centre in Olds. There are two beautiful pools, a huge hot tub, TONS of tennis courts, and every imaginable activity you could want. Everyone is extremely friendly here as well.

After getting ourselves settled, we discovered that our neighbours across the road are acquaintances from home – Erlin and Marlys Kaiser. We met our buddies Rod & Wendy, who had been in Mesa since Friday, and had supper with them and another friend from home, Janet, at a local brew pub.

Tuesday we were up and out the door for a morning run around the park and surrounding area. We were invited to Janet and Granite’s house for a party that evening, which was great. They have a house in Mesa, and we enjoyed sitting outside around a fire late into the evening.

On Wednesday the weather was forecast to take a turn from the worst, and it lived up to the promise. Things cooled off considerably, and we had rain off and on that day. What to do when it’s raining? Why shop of course! We headed off to the Arizona Mills outlet mall and scoped out some bargains for the better part of the day, then hit the hot tub and pool in the evening.

Thursday, we were up and out for another morning run, and explored a little in the neighborhoods surrounding the RV Park. As it was American Thanksgiving and virtually all the stores were closed, we decided to take a drive with Rod and Wendy to the Queen Creek area to check out the real estate situation.

It turned out to be a nicer area than I had anticipated. We found a few interesting homes for sale, and planned to contact realtors to see what pricing is like, and in particular, the status of foreclosed/bank owned properties.

Rod and Wendy joined us for a barbeque that night, where we were treated to a spectacular storm. Thunder, lighting, and a downpour of the likes I have never seen before! We had rivers of water running down the streets. After the ‘light show’, we played cards into the wee hours of the morning.

Friday we had a golf game booked at ‘The Links’ golf course in Queen Creek. We had booked a tee time the night before via the internet for a steal of a deal - $29/person including cart!
The course was fine, with the exception of the greens on holes 1 and 9, which the marshall had warned us about.

When we first arrived at the resort, we parked our trailer in the storage compound, and were surprised to see boats being stored there. Turns out that there is a lake not too far away from us. Of course we had to go see firsthand what a desert lake looks like!

Terry’s sister Judy, her hubby Joel and their daughter Kelly, along with grandkids Louis and Lauren had flown into Phoenix Friday night, and were staying for a week at Joel’s brother ‘s (John & Carol Thompson) house in Scottsdale.
John and Carol had graciously invited all of us for turkey dinner at their new home. So we combined a drive to Saguaro Lake with our trip to Scottsdale.

Saguaro Lake is 41 miles from downtown Phoenix, and is a long, narrow and winding lake created by the construction of Stewart Mountain Dam (Salt River).
What a beautiful lake! It is so different from any lakes back home. Had we had more time, we would have made arrangements to take the boat tour out of the marina so we could see more of the lake.
John and Carol’s house was incredible. They live in a gated community set deep in the hills north and east of Scottsdale. We sat outside and watched the amazing sunset, and had a great dinner and visit.

Sunday, up and out for our last run here. We decided to take advantage of the sunshine, so hung out poolside for the afternoon. We’re leaving for Las Vegas tomorrow, so packed up as much as we could in anticipation of an early morning tomorrow.
We're staying in Vegas for 6 days, and I'm sure they'll be long ones!

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