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Saint Patrick’s Day Hike!

Started the day out with pancakes at ‘our’ restaurant.  It’s riddled with black and white photos of Laurel and Hardy, Shirley Temple, old movie sets and Charlie Chaplin.  Plus, evidently, very large cups of orange juice.  I didn’t hear my guy’s drink order, but when a ginormous odd-looking cup arrived at our table I asked what it was.  Turns out it was O.J.  Remember ordering orange juice and it came in a thimble?   That justifies my confusion and I immediately coveted it.  I know, I know, ‘Thou shall not covet …” But, I think that only applied to a neighbor’s wife?  Maybe not, but I coveted all over his drink and into a straw and away from my iced tea.


We are so lucky to have SO many locations at our disposal.  Almost makes up for those 120 degree summers.

I’ll just start sharing photos and mumble on about them eh?


First pic – (and I took my ‘good camera’ which, while quality was better, I couldn’t really see what I was capturing due to sun on my preview)  We had a storm ahead (and a part of me hoped it arrived, although, I don’t think my backpack is water proof and I had my phone in my pocket tracking the hike).


Me trying to be ‘artsy’ even with a good camera, nothing compares to the actual view.


I was truly hoping for ‘wildlife’.  And to be honest, if I heard a rattle, I’d be grabbing my camera versus carefully avoiding the source of the serpent sound.  Also waiting the moment I turn over a beautiful rock, and find a scorpion under it that will stay still for a National Geographic worthy pic!  I mean c’mon!  I’ve had them in my home a dozen times, WHEN am I going to see one in the wild?


Pi or Stonehenge?  You decide.  But, as you’ll see in the next pic, was located right next to a mining excavation.


We didn’t go in this one.  My guy had already explored it on another hike and there wasn’t much to be seen.



Now comes my favorite part!  Went down into a river bed that is obviously a water source for desert animal dwellers.  Plenty of scat and prints to prove that.  Yes, it did dawn on me that we were literally delicious things walking through an area that many predators visit for protein.  But, the naturally washed rocks and amazing terrain trumped those thoughts.


Mini waterfall.


This rock reminded me of a fish.  A fish that evidently has a stick up its nostril. LOL!


Snake stick, attacking a rock.  We did have to jump down into some brush from quite  a height and MY rock was checking all brush for snakes.  I had snake guards on (he didn’t this time) so I so unselfishly said, “Just go!”  I know.  I’m a giver.


A storm was threatening the entire time – but, did not come to fruition.


A vein!  With vugs.


Just gorgeous!


“Life, uh, finds a way”  Said in my best Jeff Goldblum voice.


Okay, he stops for rocks, I stop for close up shots of flora and fauna.


The colors in this rock was unreal!  Again, better in person.


Where we came from to flat land.


Hoof proof.


A wall that once contained something to do with mining.


This guy continued to watch us for what seemed like forever, protecting his family. Bless his Burro heart. x


The family.  When I took this photo, I only saw the darker burros.  Was happy to discover the other two after downloading.


A thick stringer!


Almost back to the car.


The local gold mine.  It’s for sale for $2,500,000.  We were going to offer 2. lol.


We did not disturb.


Pay dirt!  Sitting RIGHT THERE!  We still did not disturb.  Although, during the hike, one side of my jacket may or may not have been hanging VERY low due to there certainly NOT being any rocks in my pocket. 😉

We ended the day with a stop at a pub after burning over 1,300 calories on the hike!

AND!  That ended in a Snakebite. The only kind you want!






Of Mountains (and Men who make me climb them)

Was discussing something I’d misplaced with my boyfriend and suggested it might still be in his car the other night.  He replied with one of the funniest sentences of the weekend.  “Yeah, well, you did jump up and run into the house.”

Blatant lie.  I turned to him with a very straight face as I pointed out to him, (like a seasoned defense attorney having trapped the witness with solid evidence), #1, I do NOT jump.   And #2, I do not ‘run’.  Pfffft.  I rest my case your honor.

But, I DO hike.

It’s become a ‘thing’.  A thing I never used to do yet, after Christmas revealed, a thing I’m evidently going to be doing a lot more of.  Hiking boots, backpack, headlamp etc. came in cheery holiday packages.  Ho! Ho! Ho!  Mer-ry Walkin’!

Have to say though, that I truly do enjoy being out there.  Especially like it because it pleases my guy to no end.  I love seeing him smile.  Treasure watching him find a vein or possible ore on the ground and love it when he excitedly shows it to me or teaches me some geological ‘thing’.

And we ‘meander’.  It’s not like we’re marching at some wild pace.  We take in the surroundings and sometimes I’ll pass him up and vice-versa.  We do stay out for hours though, so a lot of ground gets covered.

Our latest hike started out like that:


Then … took a turn.  Or, rather, an INCLINE.

Him: “I really want to check out that rock – I see it from the road and pretty sure something is up there.”

Me: “I don’t think I can climb that …”

Him: “There’s a fence, see?”

Me: (Hallucinating a fence for the hell of it and putting my complete trust in him that it exists) “O.K.”

He’s navigating this mountain like a champ.  Me?  I’m praying each rock I grab is in fact anchored in some fashion and I’m repeating a mantra in my head that went a little something like this:  “Please don’t let me fall off of this mountain.”

Got to that point where I was half way up and screwed.  Because as much trouble as I was having going UP, I knew down would be worse.  My guy had assured me there was a way to cut around once we’d reached the top and circle back around to the car.  Much like that fence fable, I believed him.  There was no fence.  The fence that had been my deciding factor in even attempting to scale this beast, because once reached, I was going to cling to it as I went higher.

Might be a good time to mention I’m afraid of heights, so, there’s that.

A couple of times he turned around to lend a hand.  A couple of times he turned around to see me in the oh so flattering position of crawling on my hands and knees with brow knotted in fear.

Not entirely sure how, because there were a few times I was literally frozen in fear and couldn’t move without his encouragement, BUT, we made it.  (“We” made it, like there were any doubt he was going to.)

This was the view – and I ASSURE you, the pictures do not do the height or the fear justice.  It’s like trying to take a photo of a full moon on a phone.


Well, you be the judge.  This is the view from the top.



Oh, see that board?  That’s a ‘don’t step over me’ board.  Note next pic.

Right after this happened, I heard, “I KNEW it!”

He had found the mine he suspected was up there.

I found the nerve (after an extended visit with the sturdiest rock I could find)  to get up and peek at what he spied.  Um, to the left of him in that picture, guess what’s there?  Go ahead.  Guess.

NOTHING!!!  A sheer freaking drop.

This was the mine entrance … (would have been a better picture, only, I didn’t want to die).

I sat back down while he collected soil samples and picked at various rocks.  While I sat I wondered a) How we were going to get down because that sheer drop sure as hell wasn’t an option.  b) how much a helivac might cost and would I have to be injured or would they just collect me?  c) If I prayed really hard, would my friend put in a good word for me in case there IS an afterlife.

I eventually was able to stand and don my backpack again.  And, wouldn’t you know it?  There was a way to descend in a criss-crossy manner down the same flipping mountain that was 75 times less scary than the ascension.  Where was this route going up?   Seriously??  Cheese and Rice!

I did feel very happy once we were on semi-flat earth again.  Had that adrenaline rush of accomplishment and near-death.

Back to non-life threatening hiking.

We made it to the car and decided to check out an area further down that had mines to explore.

Now, THESE I am not afraid of.   I get to wear my head lamp and barbed wire be damned, plunge into the unknown.  Only thing that’s a little disconcerting is the fact that there’s usually bedding for a 4 legged variety resident.  We’ve yet to meet up with any occupants though.


The best part (other than being outside with nature and my guy) is the delicious exhaustion once back in civilization.

I always feel like I could keep going forever once I’m out there, but we were both nodding off on the couch once home.  Time well spent.

And –  AND!  I didn’t fall off of a mountain.  Halle-flipping-lujah!


Musings from the Laundromat: Relaxing Flu Edition.

I knew I wanted to relax this weekend – didn’t realize how adamant my body was going to be about that happening.

I woke Friday to two lovely surprises.

1) A visibly swollen neck, sore throat, headache and fever

2) I’m not pregnant.  (Not that there was a possibility, but found that the least offensive way to put it for you.)

Went to work and really hung in there, if hanging in there means occasionally putting my head on my desk and mouth breathing.

Somehow got everything done and finally couldn’t ‘hang’ anymore.  I tapped out at 2, came home and hit my bed so hard there may be charges brought against me.

I can’t remember the last time I slept so much!

Well, intermittent sleep anyway.  Had anyone watched me Friday night they may have drawn the conclusion I was kicking heroin.

You know, that lovely ‘fever fidget’ mode?  Hot, cold, legs kicking – moaning.

The flu is no joke!

So I wake up Saturday feeling like I’d biked the Tour de France and realized I still had to adult.

I had no medicine, no more juice.

I called my mom (feeling pathetic) hoping she could shop for me.  I didn’t reach her and sat and debated.

Do I take my virus out into the world?  That would be selfish.  But, I needed provisions and my fairy godmother wasn’t flying in any windows with aid.

So, I went.

My eyes looked like Gilbert Godfried with a shellfish reaction.  My face pale, sans makeup – mouth lolling open like a zombie.

Safe to say no one hindered me during my excursion.

I grabbed meds, soup and lots of juice and headed back home.

Lots of movies watched me this weekend – but two I DID stay awake for were Bridget Jones’s Baby and A Street Cat Named Bob.  The latter was genius.

I don’t want to give anything away, but there is a scene tha mirrors something I described earlier.

Anyway, I highly recommend this movie – if you have Netflix, you can find it there.  It was a book first, based on these two:

So, now I’m at the laundromat.

And it would have been SO easy to not have come.

Especially when I arrived and there were people waiting outside and the door was not open.

But, my sheets and pillowcase needed washing – after two days of soaking up my germs.

And once I saw that the WIFI was actually working, I made myself stay and wait so that I could write to you.

I’ll be crawling back into bed after I make it up with these fresh linens and put my clean clothes away – and finding another movie to watch me.

And, I can say that I have successfully accomplished what I set out to do this weekend no?  Just – maybe next time, it can be by choice.



Musings from the Laundromat: Finger Lies and White Glove Cleaning edition


I peopled yesterday.

I SO peopled.

Made a return at a major store – found no replacement, went to another major store – this is after an uncomfortable drive to the first place.


Woke up.


Care for pets.



Thought of leaving brings on another need for bathroom.

The drive: “OMG, why are they going so fast?”  “Am I going too slow?” “I have to be in this lane.” “Are they mad at me?” “They’re not going to let me in if I don’t move now.”



Get me out of here!


Last store – my heart was ready to come out of my chest.  I entered Safeway.

Wiped my cart with the sanitary thingy – reach into my purse for my pen (I always do a ‘tally’ as I go) and ‘POKE’ … And OUCH.

I pulled my hand out of my purse and … Blood.

A lot.

A trial size perfume spritzer had shattered and the ‘poke’ was a shard of glass.

I headed to customer service because A) I am NOT going home now without my provisions and B) I needed her to check my lottery scratcher tickets because I am blind as Clarice Starling in Buffalo Bill’s cellar these days.

So I’m standing there – dripping on not only the cart, but the floor, my clothes, anything in my midst.

Me: (placing, very calmly, scratcher tickets on the counter)  Um, do you have a band aid?

Her: Wow.  You’re bleeding pretty bad.

Me: Yeah.

Her: OK. (Scurries off for ‘things’)

Me: I’m so sorry.

Her: Don’t be sorry.  How did you do that?

Drip.  Drip.

Me: (Feeling woozy, trying not to bleed everywhere and becoming increasingly aware of how much I am) I, um, I  was by the dispenser, the thing ..

Her: The sanitizer?  You cut yourself on the wipe container?

Me: Yes.




“Do you want to file a claim?”

No, no I didn’t lol. Because it wasn’t the dispenser’s fault.

She kindly patched me up and yes, I had missed a ‘winner’.  $10 in my pocket and a band aid on my finger and I was off.

But what WAS their fault?  The barricades in the aisles.  Stock people, I know you have to stock,  but, damn!  It’s hard enough for me to be in the store at it’s best time (which I still haven’t figured out) but when I’m doing a grocery version of a maze/obstacle course that’s ridiculous.

I was so DONE with being out, SO done with peopling and so mad at myself for allowing the sweet customer service lady to believe the sanitizer dispenser attacked me.

The rest of the day I spent cleaning and cooking.

It’s time for my annual home inspection – or as I like to think of it, ‘intrusive visit where photographs are taken of all my belongings’.

I clean all the time, but this visit calls for the white glove kind of clean.

You know, all the things you don’t do all the time.  (Or, maybe it’s just me?) Like, removing and washing the floor vents, cleaning the top of the  fridge, cleaning under sinks and tossing items not used even once since last inspection.

I got most everything done except my bedroom.

I just can’t get into gear to do it!

We all have that one room everything that doesn’t belong anywhere else ends up right?  Well, that’s my bedroom.

And it really sucks the ‘nest zen’ right out of my budoire.

I’ll get to it eventually.  I have a deadline after all.  That always motivates me.

But for today … I’m going to chill out a little.

Luckily, I am done with outside errands and there’s no more peopling in Sunday’s forecast.



Musings from the Laundromat: Rocky Horror Clock Edition

My clock is confused.

I set it for 6 a.m. Knowing I could comfortably hit snooze a couple of times before gathering my laundry and heading out to the ‘mat.

Woke on time – hit that button like the lady of leisure I felt.

Next eyelid opening had me staring at 7:30.  Ok.  Laundromat officially doesn’t open until 8:00.  I still had plenty of time to do my customary brushing of tangled hair and morning teeth then find some pants to throw on.

I even toyed with the idea of showering first …

Then I walked out of my bedroom and glanced at my other clocks.



My time keeper had taken a step to the left.

Now, I realize it’s Sunday and other than laundry and light cleaning, I have nothing pressing on my agenda – but I did get that momentary panicked bird in the chest sensation and then “Oh shit” went through my mind.

I encounter this ‘Time Warp” annually.  I have a ‘smart’ clock.  I beg to differ with its intelligence as it is supposed to know that we, in Arizona, do not observe Daylight Savings Time.  Our clocks do not Fall Back this time of year.

And besides, dear clock of mine – that occurred LAST weekend.

So, I changed its mode to whatever made the time correct and proceeded to head out of the door weighted down with two baskets of dirty clothing.


Laundry Lady is here this week.  I’m glad.  Some normality returned to my routine.  We exchanged our usual banter and I sat at my 2nd favorite table.

While typing a man with a thick German accent asked:

“There is internet?”

“Yes,” I responded, “Free WIFI.”

He settled into the table behind me and has his tiny lap top out.  As I stuffed the dryers I asked, “Did you find it?”

“Oh yes.  You know, the McDonalds, they don’t have it anymore.”

“Oh, really?”

“Yes, yes.  I think they do not want for you to sit too long inside.”

I can’t remember the last time I sat inside of a McDonalds.  Can’t actually remember the last time I actually ate McDonalds.  I think that’s a good thing.

I do have a ginormous piece of salmon that I’ll be cooking in between cleaning and binge watching Salem on Netflix.

And, I’ll be cutting my eyes over to my clock occasionally to be sure it’s not up to anymore shenanigans.


Something a little punny about ‘watching’ a ‘clock’ no?

But I will be.  Know this clock, I WILL be.