Friday, February 28, 2014

OH WHAT TITLE TO GIVE THIS POST ??

Certainly “FINALLY ! “ would be appropriate

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As would, “SURE TOOK LONGER THAN I THOUGHT”

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Or even, “I THOUGHT A TOAD WAS A FROG ??”

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I could have called it “I MANAGED 1,213 DAYS WITHOUT ONE”

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Of course the obvious would have been “THE BIG ANNOUNCEMENT”

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Just today I finally got the paperwork properly signed and notarized.  It’s officially MINE now !!

I sure wasn’t even looking.  It just fell into my lap during the course of a conversation.

I BOUGHT A CAR !!!!

It even came with the Blue Ox towing system.  All I have to do is hook up and go.

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Isn’t she just the cutest little thing you ever saw !!

She’s a 1998 Chevy Tracker – making her 16 years old - so she’s an OLD girl – fits in well with Bennie & I.

She has about 83,000 Miles on her – which apparently is not a lot for a Tracker – I’ve heard they go to 200,000 – 300,000 Miles !

Her name is Ms. Daisy.

There’s absolutely NO bells and whistles on Ms. Daisy.  Manual windows – yes I have to roll the handle !!; no air-conditioning; no pressing a button to lock/unlock the doors, etc. etc.

And I LOVE her !!

The Gang here had to spend quite a bit of time with me showing me how to hook it up etc.

All I had to get was a Drop Down Hitch and a few locking pins.

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Did a loop around the area to get a feel for this towing stuff.

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Certainly never in my wildest dreams did I think I would be buying a CAR this year – but there you have it.

Opportunity knocks so you gotta answer.

And NOW I get to ESCAPE from Quartzsite !!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY LITTLE BENNIE

Yup, Today marks his 14th Birthday.  Oh My !

He also celebrates his Birthday with my ‘baby’ Sister – who, like us all, ain’t so young herself anymore !!  LOL

Now are those sleepy eyes or what !

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And YUP – still in Q !

Sunday, February 23, 2014

CANADIAN SNOWBIRDS ASSOCIATION

Just received an e-mail from a friend with the following information.  Perhaps it might be helpful to some people.

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Here are notes that we took at the Canadian Snowbirds Meeting ( February 19, 2014).

 

  • Canada has developed a new 10 year passport at a cost of $160. The five year passport is still available but costs $120.

  • In terms of length of time Canadians can be out of province and maintain their provincial health care, BC, Alberta, Manitoba and Ontario allow 7 months while Saskatchewan allows 6 but CSA is working on increasing it to 7 months. Note that the 7 months includes trips anywhere out of province.

  • USA passed the JOLT bill in the Senate that would allow Canadians to stay in the US for up to 8 months but it still has to pass in the House of Representatives. This may happen in 2014. Once passed, it would be a Retiree Visa, type B-2, available to Canadians over 50, and that would be renewable every 3 years. It is not known if this would be free for Canadians.

  • Good idea to create a Border Binder that would include:

    • Copy of property deed or lease agreement that proves that you have a permanent home in Canada

    • Property Tax Bill

    • Utility Bills covering the 12 month period prior to entering the USA

    • Copies of credit card bills and bank statements from Canadian banks

    • Auto and home insurance policies

    • Travel insurance policies

    • Total amount of US and Canadian funds being brought into Canada – Be sure to give them the exact amount of each currency, if asked. Never say “about”. Always say the exact amount per person.

    • Vehicle registration for RV, tow vehicles, etc.

    • Copy of IRS form 8840 that has to be completed and sent in annually. The filing date for 2013 is June 15, 2014. This is the form that proves that you have a closer tie to Canada than to the US and needs to be completed by both husband and wife. The number of days calculated over a three year period in this form has nothing to do with the US Immigration calculation of number of days (see below). Consequences of not filing this form and not being able to prove that you have a closer tie to Canada include not allowing you into the US, or making you pay US income tax on your Canadian earnings and pensions, or a $10,000 fine per year.

    • CANADIAN and US BORDER OFFICIALS CAN NOW HEAR WHAT YOU SAY IN YOUR VEHICLE FROM A DISTANCE OF ONE KILOMETER OR MORE FROM THE BORDER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is known as the “Hot Zone”.

  • Canadian and US border officials are now exchanging information on when you enter the US and when you enter into Canada, so they will both know exactly how long you were in the US. Eventually, Canada and the US will share the same building at border crossings to further facilitate the exchange of information.

  • DO NOT earn any money or obtain goods in exchange for work or earn interest in a US bank account. If you do, you will have to file a US income tax return.

  • 800,000 Canadians come to the US for three weeks or more every year. 35% of them have no travel health insurance. The average cost of a one day hospital stay in the US is $1,800. Alberta Heath Care reimburses Alberta residents in the amount of $100 per day while BC Medical reimburses its residents in the amount of $75 per day. A long hospital stay without travel insurance can cost in the hundreds of thousands of dollars.

  • CSA endorses the Medipac travel insurance company. We have no personal experience with this company, Medipac has no upper age limit for obtaining travel insurance, have a loyalty discount of 1% per year for a max of seven years, and has a Medipac Plus option for $39 that has more benefits than the standard policy.

  • Currently, Canadians are allowed to be in the US for a total of 182 days in any contiguous 12 month period. This is the US Immigration rule on number of days in the US and has nothing to do with the US IRS calculation of days in form 8840. Keep a record in your border binder in case you are required to prove this to border officials. Remember that even if you go across the border for less than one day it counts as a whole day and ..... it counts against the 182 days.

  • Declare everything, including repairs to vehicles done in the US. The limit is $800 per person.

  • Just answer the border official's questions. Don't volunteer anything.

  • When asked how long you will be in the US, tell them the number of months. They get confused if you tell them the number of days.

  • Remove sunglasses and ensure that the border official can see you.

  • In the spirit of putting US citizens to work, if a friend who is Canadian helps you work on your RV or building a deck or shed, etc., an American can report your friend and he/she can be banned from the US for some number of years. Be careful with this issue.

THINGS BOUGHT AT Q

HEY !!  Guess where I am now !!!

I know !  I know !  You’re not going to believe it !!

YUP, Still in Q. grrrrrr

I’ve been here now almost SIX WEEKS !!

Waiting…..Waiting……Waiting…..

Getting antsy now to move on but can’t ----- gotta wait…..for at least another week for sure.

Now I have MANY fine qualities – although MANY would disagree with that – but PATIENCE is not one of them !!

Guess I’m feeling in a rut right now.

Nothing even to Blog about ‘cause I’ve been doin’ NUTTIN’ !!  So let’s see, what did I BUY this year.

Arriving in Arizona this year I knew I didn’t need a thing !  Nope !!  Over the last 3+ years I now have gotten everything I need and want to enjoy this lifestyle to the maximum.

Yet…..

So here what I bought this year.

NEW CHAPS

CHAPS

Last time I was home riding with that saucy Gerard – he made a snarky remark that it might be time for me to get new chaps.  There were holes in my old ones and I can’t even tell you how old they were.

AROUND THE FIRE JACKET

JACKET

I was wanting a nice comfortable WARM jacket for sitting around the campfires at night.  Found exactly what I wanted at one of the Q Vendors.  She wanted $28.00 plus Tax for it.  I said “Plus Tax ??”  looking very dumbfounded. hehehe  I didn’t pay any tax.

LOUNGE CHAIR SIDE TABLE

SIDE TABLE

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I already have these for my lounge chair but at 2 for $10.00 I like to pick up a couple of extra ones each year to give to the Folks back home.

NEW SEWER HOSE

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I realized that all last Spring, Summer, and Fall – while I was at  HARRISON RIVER RV PARK my sewer hose was sitting outside (like it’s supposed to) in the Sun all day.  Hmmmmm  Surely that has compromised the plastic (or whatever it’s made of).  AND I wasn’t taking any chances with that !!

STOVE TOP GRILL

My old one was getting pretty awful looking.

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Stove Top looks much nicer and cleaner now.

TIRE MONITORING SYSTEM

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Seeing as I realized early in the year that I had NOTHING I HAD to get this year, I figured I would get one of those Tire Monitoring Systems.  Of course, I let the young one NINA do all the research and face all the crowds at the Big Tent until she decided which one they were going to buy.  Then I just bought the same one.  Works for me.

A short little video of it in action….

A NEW VACUUM

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Now this was a waste of money as it’s quite useless.  First of all they wanted $80.00 for it if you paid cash – or $88.00 if you were going to use your Credit Card.  I paid cash.

Why is it that these things seem to work wonderfully and have lots of suction power then they are demonstrating them ???  And you get them home and they are useless !!  Oh well.

HARLEY BAG

HARLEY BAG

OK, So I REALLY needed this bag.  NOT !!  I must have at least 1/2 dozen of these sorts of bags – not with HD logo on it though.  She wanted $12.00 plus tax for it – I got it for $10.00 NO tax.

VALVE STEM EXTENSIONS

VALVE STEM EXTENDERS

I thought I needed these for when I installed my Tire Monitoring System.  Turns out I didn’t AND good thing ‘cause they won’t fit on my rig.  grrrrrr

There’s other things, I’m sure, but I’ve just forgotten about them.

And the BIGGEST purchase was…………..

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

A SPECIAL PLACE IN Q

Like most RV’ers, I suppose, I haven’t really explored Quartzsite – outside of the ‘Big Tent Event’ and the many Vendors.

So when Rita told me about CELIA'S RAINBOW GARDEN I knew I wanted to go see it.  And what a special place it is.

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Celia was a little girl who lived here in Quartzsite with her parents and died at the very young age of 8 1/2 years old.

If you google Celia’s Rainbow Garden you will get numerous hits – many of which are other Bloggers who visited these gardens and have written about it.

But the most important one of all is the website created by her Parents and their heartfelt words. Celia’s story is written HERE in such a beautiful and loving way by her Mother, Joanne Winer.

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Another website describes it this way……

“Celia’s Gardens is a unique, one-of-a-kind of desert botanical gardens and is a must-see if you are in Quartzsite. It encompasses over 15 acres of the Town Park on Plymouth Road, and is a totally volunteer effort. There is so much to see there that you will need a few hours to take it all in. Visit it and see what the community working together can do…….”

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There are numerous trails and pathways that wind and twist between dozens of beautifully created memorials.

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The area is quite large and I only got to see a small portion of it as it was a particularly HOT day and I needed to get out of the heat.

These gardens were created and continue to be maintained by Volunteers.

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This brick wall was built by Celia’s Classmates…

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And each of them made an imprint of their hand.

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“Celia's Rainbow Garden includes "Adamsville," a miniature village started in 1974 by Babe and Babs Adams at the RV park they lived at in Castle Rock. They donated the village to the Quartzsite Historical Society, who restored it and placed it here in 2001.”

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I certainly cannot come up with the right words to express the feeling I experienced as I walked through this wonderful place.

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A section has been created by and for RVING WOMEN.  I am not a Member of this Group because I’m just not a ‘group’ kinda person.

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Each year plaques are made and placed there for the women who have gone to that big RV in the sky.

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My friends, Rita & Pat (along with many of their Friends), were instrumental in creating this and continue to maintain it.

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This is a MUST SEE for those who have not been here.

Thank you Rita for showing me this place !!

Along the way Rita showed me where the ‘runway’ is for the model airplane enthusiasts.

Got these pics off the Internet.

RC Flyers Quartzsite, AZflyers 013

She also showed me where Folks can race their toy cars.  No pictures unfortunately but they have a great place complete with jumping ramps and everything.

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Monday, February 10, 2014

YUP, I’M STILL IN Q

Well it appears, once again, I am waaaaay behind on my Blogging.  So I’m gonna try and catch up in one post.

I think this is the longest consecutive time I’ve spent in Q – actually anywhere really – well except for last Summer in B.C.  I’m closing in on my 4th week here with no signs of leaving anytime within the next two weeks.

Still waiting on packages to arrive – and other ‘things’……

BARBARA is now off to other parts but while we were both here in Quartzsite we managed to get a couple of visits in.

I went to see her one day and as usual she has to take the obligatory picture of me arriving.  That day was filling the water jugs also.

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I didn’t have Bennie with me – because of the water jugs - so little Katie got all the attention.

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Barbara wanted to show me the new tilts she got for her solar panels. While I was up on her roof I took another short video to try and capture what it is like here in Q.  This video was taken AFTER the “BIG TENT” event when the crowds had gone.

Another day she came by my site as I wanted to show her how to raise/lower her solar panels without needing help from others.

Denise showing me how to lower my panels

Bennie and Katie get along quite well but don’t ‘play’ together.

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They were too busy ‘investigating’ the ground !!

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With everything else going on I only got to do about 3 Rows of the Vendors.  I was quite intrigued by these….

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They are motorized wheelchairs !!!

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I can TOTALLY see me on one of these – well that’s YEARS away yet – I hope !!

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Hey JERI !  I even got a pic of that saucy guy with the signs when he wasn’t looking !!  LOL

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More scenes around the boondocking areas…

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I got to meet the fabulous GEORGE & SUZIE YATES !  I knew they were close to JEAN & SKIP so I dropped by for a visit.

Here they are coming over to meet ..

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George blogged about it HERE and took a ton of pictures and sent them to me.

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Unfortunately our time was limited as I had several errands to do in Town that were important.

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But we did have a great time chatting and I’m sure I’ll be seeing them again next year – or even earlier than that as they live in Ontario.

BTW,  That’s my laundry on the back of the bike – which never got done that day or the next day !!  LOL

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Hi-Ho Silver Away !!!

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