On the taskbar of my laptop I track the temperatures of 4 different areas at all times. Along with our home in Kelowna, and Calgary where our kids live, I still watch and see what the weather in our old home of Campbell River is like, as well as the weather here in Gold Canyon. This way I don’t have to rely on the various emails and comments I receive from those in BC who keep telling me how nice it is on the Island, (I think they’re fibbing when they tell me they will be cutting the lawn soon). Mind you, having the 3 locations in Canada in my face every morning I get to see when it’s warmer north of the border in the morning than it is here in the desert. Several times lately it’s been colder here than all three of those locations, but at least here we’re getting 10 hours of sunshine most every day, and afternoon temps are usually pushing 65 every day although it’s only 55 today. Not that 65 is much to write home about, and certainly not what we were hoping for when we came down here this winter. In the 7 weeks we’ve been here we haven’t had one day in the 80’s, and probably only 10 or 15 in the 70’s. Talking to some of the people who’ve been coming down here for years, this is one of the coolest and wettest winters they’ve ever experienced.
Last night was also one of the windiest nights we’ve experienced in Arizona. We’ve purchased some anchors and straps to keep our awning in place and secure in moderate winds, and other than pulling it in a couple of times when the winds were expected to be brisk it’s performed well. When we went to bed last night everything was calm but that didn’t last overnight. Around 4:00 in the morning the winds picked up quite strongly, and after waiting for it to die down for awhile I found myself out pulling in the awning at 4:45. It is both dark and cold at that time of the morning if you must know. It’s now almost 12 hours later, and the winds are still strong. So much so that we haven’t even managed to get our for a walk today…but it is sunny, if that matters when you’re stuck in the RV all day.
The cool weather has meant a couple of things as far as the scenery is concerned. There has been a lot of frost damage to the cultivated cactus and bushes that people have planted for decoration. There’s been lots of people here in the park hacking away at their dead plants. The wet weather has also meant that the desert is absolutely the greenest we’ve ever seen. Even the Superstition Mountains next to our park are showing signs of greenery all the way to their peaks. We’ve also seen the first evidence of grasses growing among the cactus at this time of year. The cattle that roam the desert in this area are going to be well fed this year.
Last Friday we decided not to go with the hiking club as we weren’t that interested in the challenging hike they had planned, or the easy alternative either. We took the opportunity to sleep in a bit and hike Silly Mountain which is just a mile or two up the highway. The first year we were here in Gold Canyon we were on the hill 3 or 4 days per week, and last year we probably hiked the hill a half dozen times. This year we had not climbed the hill once until this trip, and it was a nice way to spend the morning. It only takes about 75 minutes to walk around the hill’s trails, and while it’s not nearly as technical as some of the hikes we’ve been on this year, it’s not a walk in the park either.
See what I mean about green?
This is the view north toward Usury Pass, overlooking part of Apache Junction.
This is the view towards the south over Gold Canyon. I have no idea what Sylvia was pointing at, but if she want’s to be in my pictures that’s OK with me.
Saturday was a pretty nice day here, and I had 2 different ball practices to attend. After the second practice several of my teammates announced that they would be attending the dance to be held in the ballroom that evening. As most of them have known me for a couple of years now, they are fully aware that I can’t or at least don’t dance. That only gives them more ammo to give me a hard time about, and they proceeded to tell me how lame my protests were. As I left the ballpark I figured I’d managed to weather their good natured ribbing, and hoped to have a quiet evening. Shortly after I got back to the trailer Sylvia got a call from one of the wives of my fellow teammates who had heard that I’d expressed an interest in attending the dance. She was more than willing to hold a spot at their table for us and was looking forward to seeing us there. Where she got these ideas from I’ll never know, but I might be reconsidering sending Bruce a Christmas Card next year. By this time I could not hide anywhere, and after some discussion we decided to attend the shindig. We actually had a good time, and I know I will absolutely shock my friends and family, but Sylvia and I did get up on the floor for a couple of slow dances. She even managed to get in a dance with a fella who can actually dance, and enjoyed herself immensely.
Who knows, maybe next year we’ll add ballroom dancing lessons to the list of things we do to keep busy down here.