Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Coming Attractions

Six weeks in a 26' class C with two people and four dogs has turned out to be a little crowded.

And after all, we are actually working in it: the Applied Solutions Inc mobile office.

Dueling laptops, and this is without the printer even being set up.

So in order to preserve domestic tranquility and promote the general welfare . . .


It's in the shop at La Mesa RV getting ready for us to take it home  to be our new rolling home.

Look at all this room (note the careful edit of washer/dryer room to dog crate room):

But at only 34' (plus a few inches) she's still short enough for most state and national parks.

A view of the cockpit.   

 Complete with a swing-out computer desk so that I one of us can work even while Tom the other one is driving.

A quick shot of the interior before the addition of personal clutter.

I'll miss this little Winnebago: for up to three weeks at a time of travel it's been great. But I am anxiously awaiting the additional room we will soon have.  A couch for the dogs to snuggle up with us.  A full-sized refrigerator.  An outside TV.  Wait, what do we need an outside TV for anyway?

See stock photos at Palazzorv.com.

Friday, February 21, 2014

Chihuly in the Garden

The current exhibit at the Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix is glasswork by artist Dale Chihuly.  How, do you ask, do we wind up there without either of our cameras?  Apparently we both need keepers.  It turned out that this was a great time to test out the camera in my new Moto X.  I wasn't the only one taking phone or tablet pictures so I didn't feel too foolish.

 Twin glass columns at entrance.

Some pieces I've uploaded one picture to show it in context . .

 . . . and a second for more detail

 I loved the lavenders and purples in this piece, and the giant "marbles".

 My favorites, bringing back elementary school-yard memories.

Not glass, but a wonderful statue: "St Earth Walking"

 A fascinating climbing vine of a cactus.

 This massive piece as seen from on a hill above.

 One had to look carefully to realize that these pieces were not ridged but smooth.

 Belugas in the desert. 


Yellow reeds.

I had a picture of one of these gigantic plants last week in Tucson.  The sign reminded me of its name: a Boojum tree.

These glass "balloons" were suspended from the canopy and swirled quietly in the gentle breeze.

I think that the phone didn't do too badly, considering.

Friday, February 14, 2014

And the Best Part about camping at Catalina State Park (according to the dogs) . . .

Camping in the middle of a village of black-tailed prairie dogs.

Pictures were taken from the RV windows.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Day at the Museum

When in New York, you can visit the Museum of Natural History and see lots of animals in their "native habitat".   Dead, stuffed animals that is.  Outside of Tucson at the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum you can see them for real.  Even though they are captive (except perhaps the hawks - see below) I was impressed by the quality of the habitats for each of the animals and groups.  Many of the larger animals were doing what we know animals do best: sleeping, but we managed to find a few awake.

 Like this white-tailed deer.

Napping, but los lobos were necessary to get anyway.  Mexican wolves.

A well-fed coyote that everyone was calling "he" but I'm pretty sure was a "she".  She was patrolling the perimeter of the enclosure.

This fox was a hit.  Nimbly jumping around and very aware of the people watching her.  She reminded us of Kady.

"You looking at ME?"

The ocelot made a brief appearance.

While the bobcat just slept.

We never did find the porcupine, but this really cool lizard lived with him.

Or is it a very small dragon?

Cool plant that I can't remember the name of.

Desert flowers for the hummingbirds and butterflies.

As seen in the aviary.  What exactly are these two small doves doing?  Oh.  It is mating season.

After leaving the crook of the tree, they remained close.

I believe these are the same grossbeaks who visit Oregon in the summer.

Handsome duck.

At least the birds were mostly awake, if difficult to capture on my little camera.

Bighorn sheep.

And the beavers were also awake and showing off their aquatic athleticism.

But it was the Raptor Free-flight show for the win.

Grey hawk.

A beautiful little barn owl.

There was a Peregrine Falcon.  There was no way my camera could capture it.

And the real stars: Harris's Hawks.  How cool is that?

Not only do they hunt in packs, their social structure is very akin to that of dog (or wolf) packs.   Females are dominant and may not let the males eat.  They are therefore fed in separate crates at night.

A special female was supposed to come out at the end to meet people.  Unfortunately one of the other females took off hunting and hadn't come back by the end of the show.  And the missing female was an enemy of the tame girl scheduled to meet and greet.  Yep, just like certain Cardigans I have known.