Monday, December 8, 2014


December 1 - 7, 2014:

A not so fun drive on route 10 through Phoenix, Mesa, Chandler and all the other metropolitan towns.  Once on the other side it is the wide open area prone to dust storms which makes that section of I-10 known as one of the deadliest roads in Arizona. No wind or dust to worry about today, clear sailing all the way.  We arrive at Desert Trails RV Park on the western side of Tucson around 2 PM and start to settle in. It will be relaxing to settle in one place for a while (to mid March) as we have maintained a crazy pace this year staying at 74 campgrounds.  This is our third winter here, we know so many people, it's almost like going home.

The view from the observation deck at Desert Trails

Desert Trails entrance

Speaking of going home, I have made travel plan and reservations for January to fly to Ft. Myers, Florida on the 8th to visit my oldest daughter and family, then flying from there to New Jersey on the 15th to visit my son and finally returning to Tucson on the 25th. 

Wednesday evening I go to to see my favorite Tucson musicians, Lana Rebel and Kevin Mayfield at La Cocina Restaurant.  They have a wonderful laid back, cool vibe that I love and they play an eclectic mix of music that I like.  Really great to see them again !

Thursday morning was a unusual, good soaking rainfall in the area, I believe the most rain we have seen here.  As a result, the planned campground hiking event was rained out.  Instead I went to the local library to use their internet for a while.  After the library I found my way back to Pat's famous Chili Dogs which I had been to once before, located in the interesting "Hollywood" section of town.  Sonoran Hot Dogs are really popular here, not sure what these actually are, but for sure they are great chili dogs and you can't beat the price at $1.50 each.

Pat's famous Chili Dogs, can't eat just one !

So many activities here at Desert Trails, Twinkles is back in Spanish class again, we went for an hour hike in the desert this morning, then a soup and salad pot luck lunch at the recreation hall, now she is at Gourd making class, happy hour at the neighbors later this afternoon, then there is a high school mariachi band doing a concert here in the evening.  

We attend the Tamale Festival at the Casino del Sol on Saturday for the absolute best food court along with several music and dance performances.  On Sunday we did another favorite cultural event, the "Fiesta de Tumacacori".  We watched the church service which is quite unique as it is done outside right in front of the Tumacacori Mission.  The setting is downright spiritual, it was a beautiful day with the mountains in the background, birds flying overhead and the sight of the ancient old Mission.  The service is done in a combination of English, Spanish and some form of native Indian accompanied by Indian dancing and spanish music.  
The religious ceremony is followed by a festival with several folk dance groups and musicians, craft vendors, environmental exhibits, children's activities, Mission tours and other activities.  Also more great local food vendors !  These are two of my favorite events in the area which are held each year prior to Christmas.

A piñata for the kids to break

Old time fiddler's played OK, but could not sing

A weird but interesting Indian dance group

Many vendors

Of course everyone likes the dancers

A beautiful red tailed Hawk

Interior of the Mission

Interior was stripped by vandals many years
ago, the park service has stabilized the
building and is leaving it as is

A model of the Mission showing what it originally looked like

The front of the Mission

Next week's plan is less eating and more exercise to work off a few unwanted pounds.  

Twinkles and Slick 

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