Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Welcome to Mesa, AZ

We have a reservation at Sun Life Vacation Resort from the middle of October to January 2, 2012 at a very good rate so we headed straight here from Albuquerque. Of course, we stopped at the Arizona visitors center to pick up our gun so we would not be the only people in the state without one:-) We are off to a fast start seeing many friends, doing major interior and exterior cleaning of the house and going on a couple of adventures all during the first few days.

The first Saturday we were here we got a call from Mike Liberti, the balloonist we met at the fiesta, who wanted to know if we wanted to crew on Sunday morning. Wow, we went from never being in a balloon to going up two weeks in a row. There were only five balloons that flew out of a park in nearby Chandler at dawn so it was very different from the fiesta. Also, the crew was Mike's wife T, who drove the chase car, and Nanc and I. It was really neat getting to fly together this time and we had a great view of Phoenix and the Valley of the Sun. We are planning to crew for Mike at a Halloween glow this weekend.
The first week we got a message from Mark and Renita that they were passing through the area and were going to stay at Sun Life for a few days. We got together with them and Alan and Sharon, whom we also met at Watersedge in Rockport in 2008. Here we are at Tortilla Flats, a neat little tourist spot east of here on the Apache Trail. The walls of the restaurant are covered with money from over 60 nations.

Beautiful desert scene along the Apache Trail that we drove on the day we went to Tortilla Flats.

Mark's picture of an Arizona Desert Bighorn Sheep that everyone saw except me as I was roaming were I could not see it. This is a rare sighting, especially during the heat of the day.

Another evening we all went to Organ Stop Pizza, a neat place with a huge Wurlitzer theatre organ. Orchestra organs were used during the showing of silent movies and have many other instruments attached that make it sound like a full band. This one was originally built for a theatre in Denver and has grown to have nearly 6000 pipes since it was installed here during the 1970's. It is a great stop for an evening of great entertainment and an OK pizza.

Another evening we were invited to Alan's and Sharon's for a cookout. It was fun sitting around and swapping tales of all our travels. Above left are Sharon and Renita with Molly. Bottom are Mark, Mike, Alan and Rose. We met Mike and Rose here on our last visit. They also used to stay at Watersedge.

I always kid Mark and Renita that their 5th wheel is going to end up like Lucy and Desi's in the movie, The Long Long Trailer, as they collect rocks all over the country. When we saw their finished work in Medora this summer I did not have my camera to show what they are doing with the rocks. Bottom left is a raw stone, right are cut stones and the rest is some of their finished work after the rocks have been shaped, polished and wire wrapped. They make necklaces, bracelets, earrings and rings. You can see AND BUY more of their work here.

We knew the Steelers were playing Arizona the second weekend we were here so we went on line and got tickets not realizing there would be THOUSANDS from STEELERS NATION in attendance. We saw the truck above and just followed it into the parking lot so we were with many Pittsburgh fans. Above is our section in the stadium, me partying with fans before the game and Nanc with a real enthusiast. We met people who had bussed in from LA, Las Vegas and other places around the Southwest just to see their team. Here is a short video of the Steeler fans drowning out the boos of Arizona fans when they were introduced. It really was like Heinz Field West.

Bottom is the pregame coin toss and the Steelers scoring a field goal. Top you can see the sea of Black and Gold in the stands. It was a great time (they won 32 - 20) and even Nanc, who would NEVER sit through a game in October in Pittsburgh, loved it.

1 comment:

Jim and Bobbie said...

We stayed at Sun Life January 2008 before we went to the first meeting with the Class of 2007 in Q. We looovvveeddd it there. Everyone was so friendly and hospitable. The restaurant there in the park was very nice also. I envy you. See you soon!