Friday, January 24, 2014

January is Almost Over Already

Here it is, a new year and life just goes on. I was looking back at some of the old BLOGS and we do tend to hit this point of inertia every year at this time. And this year – I just wasn’t feeling up to anything.

Casa Grande
Casa Grande is the centre of a strong unique agricultural area. At various times of the year you can see fields of cotton growing and huge feeder lots and dairies. After the cotton is harvested and transported to the nearby mills, which is another fascinating process, some of the cotton fields are seeded with alfalfa. After the alfalfa is cut, sheep are brought in to graze. They move from field to field daily fenced in only by portable electric wire.
CasaGrande=Sheep (4)
 CasaGrande=Sheep (3) The Auza and Manterola families have historically trailed their sheep from the winter range in Casa Grande to the summer pastures in the north. Today, they truck the sheep from Casa Grande to Cordes Junction, and then trail the sheep north. Trailing the sheep is good for the health of the sheep and improves lambing in November.
Using the Sun
Many of the structures built to protect the cattle are covered with solar panels; parking lots in and around town are covered with solar panels and even the Frito-Lay factory has solar panel fields that power their facilities.
Back to the Desert
Mid-January, we left Casa Grande to join Chuck and Sheila (our friends from Wetaskiwin) on the desert in California (Ogilby Road), just west of Yuma and a few miles north of Mexico.
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We have a number of visiting hummingbirds and had a horned toad come to visit the other day.
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 Hotned-Toad-OgilbyRd (2)
Beautiful weather and we so enjoy their company - Sheila and I cook together and we all usually play cards or just sit around solving the world’s problems in the evening.
We’ve been down to Algodones, Mexico a couple of times. We both got new glasses (Fred's glasses were $39 and mine were $159); had our feed of fish and shrimp taco; and had a nice visit with the fellow who owns the taco restaurant. We have been going there for so long, that we have visited him through the marriage of two children and the birth of his second grandchild (the day before we arrived). 
Algodones seems to be getting more sophisticated  - more big stores and fancy places with huge signs but the venders and hawkers are still out in hordes and the children run rampant.

The prices have gone up this year but our friend told us that they are paying higher taxes, too.
Chuck did get his shoes shined.
There didn't seem to be as many people and we didn't even have much of a wait at the border crossing.
We have visited a few of the Mexican Flea Markets in Calexico and Yuma.

 We toured around the Sand Dunes
ImperialDunes (15)

These are called Sand Rails and can cost way up into the tens-of-thousands of $s. ImperialDunes (3)
People come from all over the continent to race through the Dunes here. We did meet some folks from Edmonton who come down every year.

Other BLOGS                                                                   2001 to 2005;                                                 Island Winter-wintering on Vancouver Island; Wildflowers

Sunday, January 5, 2014

December Photos

First off, we want to wish you all good health and happiness for 2014!

Here are the links to the other blogs we have on-line  enjoy!

No doubt you picked up that it was a rather frantic trip down with little motivation to stop and take pictures but here is what we got. I really have no idea where we were – somewhere between the Canadian border and Salt Lake City.

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The poor little Tracker got a little salt-stained

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But it was beautiful, wasn’t it?

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And then there are our favourite companions – we have identified five that come to visit – ranging from Anna to Black Chin hummingbirds – we enjoy their company so much.