Day 143 – Kelly Heads Home

Day 143 – Saturday, November 16, 2013

After some of Dan’s delicious homemade eggs benedict, we finished packing and cleaning and headed out. Julie notes “After the delicious eggs we decided we better get ‘crackin’ to ‘beat’ the ‘scramble’ to the highway. No ‘yoke’ about it, we were very sad to say good bye to our wonderful hosts Dandy Dan and his amazing tenderloins and my new sister from another mister, Maureen. Thank you for making us feel at home at your place and helping us settle at Bill and Mary Ann’s.”

Lola (Kelly M.) and Brenda left shortly before us for the airport in their rental car. We weren’t sure how far we would get today but we drove 568 km and ended up in Grants, NM to a $59/night Travelodge. A bit of a let down from Bill and Mary Ann’s place but the price was appropriate. Julie notes “We weren’t sure how far Lola (Kelly M.) and Brenda would get either before the law was on their tale. Turns out Brenda’s claim to the shopping championship was in dispute when she found one of the store theft dye packs still attached to one of her ‘purchased’ items. Either she was desperate to win and got light fingers or the slightly distracted clerk (probably because of their beautiful rejuvenated faces) missed removing it. So they were making one more trip to the Outlet Mall on the way to the airport. (or to the jail if things don’t work out as planned.)”

We went out for a late dinner at the new Italian restaurant, La Bella Vita, in Grants. It has only been opened for about 3 months. The owners were very friendly and sociable and made sure we had a great experience. I would give it a 3.5 out of 5 star rating. Not quite as high as Trip Advisor rated it but still very good, freshly made food, and reasonable prices. They could use some background music though. It is very quiet in there when there are only a few guests. Music would improve the experience, I think. Julie notes “Now those of you who remember the ‘oh man is there going to be music there? Bradley’ of the past, are now shaking your heads. I think all that time spent in Central America and Mexico have brought out the dancer in him, and he can’t keep his feet still when he hears the beat. Either that or he wanted to drown out the crunch of croutons coming from across the table. We have spent a lot of time in close quarters listening to each other chew.”

We can’t thank our hosts enough for all of their hospitality. Thanks Dan and Maureen! We had a great visit and enjoyed our stay immensely. Julie notes “Ditto that!”

Our stay in Bill and Mary Ann’s home was a real respite from our 174 square feet of truck camper. It was such a treat to be able to relax and enjoy all of the amenities. Julie notes “Yes we can’t thank them enough! They are wonderful people to share their beautiful and comfortable home. We truly appreciate it. One small item though. I do think there might be something wrong with their television because according to Brad, the only TV channel he could get was the Wild channel, 24 hours of hunting and fishing. But Brad assured me that it was Mary Ann’s favourite pastime. So I didn’t object.”

Bill and Mary Ann (in a different location) wishing they could be at Encanterra, as well. Julie notes “Thanks again guys! We have left you a surprise as a token of our thanks. We remember how interested Mary Ann was in our javelina encounter so just a little heads up when you get to your place in Phoenix in January. I don’t want to spoil the surprise so here are a few tips when you arrive, open the door slowly, no sudden moves, some protective gloves and boots might be in order, paper training was in progress when we left, so the newspaper on the floor serves a purpose, don’t count on a soak in the tub on your first day there, it serves wonderfully as a trough. And other than that enjoy your surprise! (Turns out all of that time watching the Wild Channel came in handy!)”

One final check on the camper before leaving it at Cimmaron Trails Boat/RV Storage lot. Julie notes “Did we leave the iron plugged in? Or the TV running? Or enough crumbs lying around to keep that toad alive until we return? (Only one of those is actually applicable to our camper lifestyle.)”

We were then on the road out of Greater Phoenix heading north and east. We drove north on some secondary highways until we reached the Interstate I-40. Our route took us through Payson, where we stopped for lunch, and then on to Holbrook where we joined the Interstate. Then it was peddle to the metal. Wow! This thing flies without the camper loaded! Julie notes “We are also a bit lighter in the luggage. We took the camper cleanout as an opportunity to clean out the cupboards and closets. We found a clothes donation bin at our first gas station and said goodbye to some old favourites.”

We stopped for lunch at Macky’s Grill in Payson, AZ. This is Julie’s soup and sandwich special. I had the split pea soup with cornbread. Both were very good.

Julie notes “I think this picture speaks for itself. But please feel free to add your caption. I’m not allowed to print the one I was thinking of.”

We were then in windmill country again. Here is your fix for today. “Julie notes “WooHoo! I can feel the wind pumping through my veins. Hmm that’s probably not actually good for me though.”

Our calamari appetizer at La Bella Vita. Julie notes “The owner is an artist and has painted all of the tables, chairs, cupboards, etc. in this happy upbeat flower style. The bathrooms are a thing of beauty as well. Is it weird to take pictures of the ladies’ and men’s room?”

Lola (Kelly M.) in her happy place. A fishing charter boat in the Bay of Banderas near Bucerias, Mexico. Kelly (Lola), remember, you didn’t catch the biggest fish. That honour went to moi and the best part was that I collected $10 from both you and your husband Frank. Julie notes “Whoa! Even I am getting confused as to who is married to whom. But not who won the fishing contest. Brad reminds us of that often. This is also how happy Kelly (Lola) looked all week here in Phoenix whether golfing left handed, getting a facial, finding a bargain outfit, sharing some girl talk in the spool and now heading back to the land of snow, ice and family and friends.”

…over and out, the muleskinner and his sidekick

Julie notes “Bad news! The iPod is lost. We have checked every pocket, shelf, under seats (still trail mix under there from the great spill of 2007) to no avail. So we have been forced to use the iPhone. It has all the songs PLUS all the deleted songs and all the Christmas and Halloween scary music and so on. But it did give us some good ‘back on the highway’ inspiration. The Eagles told us to ‘Take it to the Limit’ by ‘putting me on the highway and showing me the signs’. Neil Diamond told us ‘The Road is long, with many a winding turn, leads us to who knows where…But he ain’t heavy he’s my brother’ and we’ll see those brother and sisters soon. ‘I’m dreaming of a white Christmas’ made a brief appearance before someone vetoed it. Too soon for that I think. But we still miss the iPod. Oh where oh where could you be?”

Julie notes “Kelly M. vacation epilogue – (is that the right word?) – Well Kelly, as you know you had a great week but it flew by too fast. We sure enjoyed spending time with you and your lovely wife, Brenda. Let’s hope you were able to keep that young looking wife of yours out of jail despite her shoplifting tendencies and safely on to the airplane home. We know, although you had a fun, restful time here you are ready to get back to the family and the business. Our iTunes knew that as well and aptly played ‘Mighty Quinn, the Eskimo, …everybody’s going to jump for joy’. Thanks for being a great sport and we’ll see you in person in a few months.”

1 thought on “Day 143 – Kelly Heads Home

  1. Quentin

    Hmmmm what do you think the donation people said when they found your well used travel clothes…. Phew… Who put an old dead javelina in here?

    Well I would guess that brad is either super horny or just full to the top of bull….

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