Nick’s Blog

May 242022

Have you missed us? Don’t worry, we’re alive and well. We have just been devoting most of our time to family. But let me bring you up to date.

After spending the night in Lordsburg, New Mexico, on Tuesday, the 17th, we headed northwest on US Highway 70, known as the Old West Highway, for a short drive to the Arizona state line, and then followed the highway 122 miles further to the old mining town of Globe. US 70 is an excellent two-lane road that winds its way across the high desert, with passing zones on some of the hills to keep traffic flowing.

We passed through the small towns of Safford and Duncan, crossed the San Carlos Indian Reservation, commenting on how strange it was to see mountains on the horizon after living in Florida for so long.

Terry took a picture that I think symbolizes the modern West, an old-time windmill standing next to a cell phone tower. The times, they are a changing.

US 70 ends in Globe, where we picked up US Highway 60 into Apache Junction and Mesa. Our first stop was at Terry’s parents’ house. Her dad, Pete, is 92 and her mom, Bess, is 90 and we were so glad to see them. It’s been over two years since our last trip to Arizona, so the visit was long overdue.

We had booked a room for a week at the LaQuinta Hotel a short drive away. We stayed here on our last trip to Arizona and liked it, but not so much this time around. The room itself was nice, though the air conditioner rattled and made a lot of noise, and the bed was rather lumpy. I don’t remember the WiFi being so slow last trip either, but this trip it was like sludge most of the time.

Apparently the new thing with hotels is that they do not provide daily maid service if you stay for more than just overnight. If you want the bed made, or fresh towels and bathroom supplies, you have to request it the day before, or go to the front desk and ask for towels or whatever you need. When we checked in, Terry told the desk clerk that for what we are paying for the rom, she wanted daily service, but we didn’t get it. They say it is a cost saving measure, but the room still cost me the same. I think on our next trip we will look for another place to stay.

Most of our time was spent with Terry’s parents, just talking and reminiscing about family and days gone by. One day we had a family dinner at Gertrude’s Restaurant at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix.

These pretty ladies are Terry’s nieces Andrea (left), Lauren (right) and their mother Dani, (Terry’s sister) in the center. Dani is a Nurse Practitioner who recently retired from her career as a flight nurse and trainer for a helicopter medical evacuation company. Andrea is also a Nurse Practitioner who has moved into the legal side of things and sits on the Arizona State Board of Nursing. Lauren lives in London and works for Facebook.

Dinner was nice, and I got a picture of the whole family after we ate. Here, from left to right, are Lauren, Dani, Terry’s mom Bess, her dad Pete, Terry, and Andrea.

Unfortunately, her sister Lisa and brother-in-law Jim could not join us because Jim had just been diagnosed with Covid for the second time. The first bout a while back was pretty rough, but they seem to have hit him aggressively with lots of meds this time around and he is doing much better.

This beautiful glass sculpture is called Chihuly in the Desert, one of several works by artist Dale Chihuly’s on display at the Desert Botanical Garden.

On another day I spent some time visiting with author friends Mike Leonard and Scott MacKenzie, talking about writing projects and techniques. They are a couple of very talented guys, and it was fun to share ideas with them. Scott gave me a great idea I will be using in a future Big Lake book.

It’s been very hot here. Today was 103 degrees, down from 105 the day before. Yeah, I know, it’s a dry heat. It’s dry inside an oven, too, but I don’t want to spend time in one of them either.

We have loved spending time with Terry’s family, but all good things must come to an end. Today we have about a three-hour drive to our old hometown of Show Low, where we will spend a week with our daughter Tiffany and her family. Granddaughter Destiny graduates from junior high school Thursday morning, and that evening her big sister Hailey graduates from high school. We are looking forward to being a part of the celebrations. We are also looking forward to some cooler weather in the White Mountains.

Thought For The Day – As I get older I can sense people dressing me with their eyes.

Almost There

 Posted by at 9:39 pm  Nick's Blog
May 162022

They call it Texas because it “takes us” days to get across the darn state. We spent Saturday night at the Hampton Inn in Marshall, TX, and were on the road about 10 o’clock the next morning. I was dreading going through the Dallas-Fort Worth area because there’s always so much traffic, but by hitting […]

Wake Up, Sleepyhead!

 Posted by at 12:23 am  Nick's Blog
May 092022

I have to give my ever-patient wife credit, because for the last few days she’d have had better company and more help around the house from a mannequin. I have stopped taking the Delta 8 during the day, only using it at bedtime. Otherwise, the Cymbalta seems to be keeping the worst of my back […]

Happy Mother’s Day

 Posted by at 12:04 am  Nick's Blog
May 082022

Happy Mother’s Day to all the mothers out there! What would we be without our mothers? Well, motherless, I guess. This year marks 31 years since my own dear mother passed away, and I miss her every day. She was a sweet lady who was loved by everyone who ever met her. Life didn’t always […]

Thanks Gwen

 Posted by at 12:39 am  Nick's Blog
May 072022

The combination of Delta 8 and Cymbalta seems to be keeping the worst of the pain at bay, but all I wanted to do was sleep yesterday. And while my body appreciated that, I need to be able to function at the same time. So I need to do a little more balancing, cutting the […]

May 062022

We had an appointment yesterday afternoon with Doctor Creamer’s nurse practitioner at Central Florida Pain Relief Center’s office in Orlando. He is the doctor that did my RF nerve ablations in June of 2020. Driving in Orlando is never easy, and the traffic is crazy all the time. People think nothing of cutting across three […]

On The Go All Day

 Posted by at 1:07 am  Nick's Blog
May 052022

After a very rough Tuesday night due to my back pain, we were up and out the door early yesterday morning because we had all kinds of things we needed to get done. Our first stop was at Island Doctors for our regular checkups, which we do every few months. Terry and I both had […]

May 042022

There was a term in the car sales business called hammering someone. That’s when a salesman has a customer that he literally hammers into signing the paperwork to purchase a car. It’s a high-pressure sales tactic, something that I did not believe in. I sold plenty of cars just by being myself and trying to […]

It’s Finally Done!

 Posted by at 12:46 am  Nick's Blog
May 032022

Terry spent much of yesterday doing the final finish work on the new blanket she wove for our son-in-law, Kenny. This involved knotting and trimming all the fringes on both ends, then gently washing and wet finishing, which is fulling. I asked Terry what that meant, and she said the washing process fluffs up the […]

A Big Project

 Posted by at 12:43 am  Nick's Blog
May 022022

Terry has been busy trying to finish a big weaving project before we leave on our trip, a throw blanket for Kenny, our son-in-law. When she finally took it off the loom yesterday and stretched it out, still folded, on the floor in her loom room, it measured 65×95 inches. She had to make it […]

Warming Up

 Posted by at 12:30 am  Nick's Blog
May 012022

It’s starting to warm up here on the central Florida coast, with the weatherman saying that it will be in the 90s every day next week. Combine that with the humidity, and I think summer is going to start early for us. I’m not looking forward to it. Just like some people who live in […]

Flying On Delta 8

 Posted by at 1:02 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 302022

For years the Veterans Administration prescribed pain pills for my back issues. Hydrocodone, oxycontin, morphine, you name it and at one time or another, I had it. The thing is, I really don’t like taking narcotic medicine. There are too many side effects and other issues that I did not want to deal with, so […]

I’m Sniveling

 Posted by at 12:48 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 292022

One of my least endearing character traits is my tendency to snivel, and I’ve been doing a lot of it the last couple of days due to my back pain. I have been relatively pain-free in that area for the last two years, except for the normal aches everyone with a bad back has now […]

Another Chapter Done

 Posted by at 12:59 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 282022

We were up and out the door early yesterday morning, or at least early for us. We started the day by going to LabCorp to get blood and urine draws for doctor appointments we have scheduled next week. A couple of weeks ago when I had my colonoscopy, the nurses at Advent Hospital had to […]

Apr 272022

We were up early yesterday morning because we had an appointment for Wilkie’s Pest Control to come by and do their quarterly spraying. If you live in Florida, you have a “bug man” because if you don’t, all kinds of critters will find their way inside your house. Wilkie’s is a family-owned business that has […]

Orphans And POWs

 Posted by at 12:21 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 262022

Note: Nothing new to share with you today, so here is a repost of a blog from our fulltime RVing days about a visit to an interesting Kansas town. Yesterday was yet another busy day for us. We were up early again because there were several things we wanted to do in Concordia before we […]

Not A Lot Going On

 Posted by at 12:20 am  Nick's Blog
Apr 252022

We didn’t have a lot going on yesterday, so I don’t have much to tell you about today. I spent part of the day writing, knocking out another chapter in Pucker Factor, my next book. This one starts off with a literal bang. A bunch of bangs, actually, as Somerton County deputy John Lee Quarrels […]