December 15, 1998
We spent the day in Burbank, about 70 miles away, with Mark, the boys and a few cub scouts and parents.
One of the cub parents works at Lexington Scenery & Props and invited the cubs down to the shop to work on the cub pack's Christmas parade float. The studio donated some wood and paint and a little shop space.
While the first coat of paint on the float dried Dale took us on a tour and explained that they do a lot of work for theme parks, Las Vegas hotels and trade shows. They do some movie stuff but prefer to do large scale projects that take several months.
He told us that the just shipped out a big Titanic set for some kind of traveling exhibit. They recreated the grand salon of the ship and he said it filled almost the whole building and reached the roof (20' or more). It's in about 40 big cargo containers headed for England. Too bad we didn't get there sooner.
But we did get to see some other projects including props for Lego Land, some eight foot high 'DOCTOR DOLITTLE' letters for the video release of the movie, giant size toy pieces from Toy Story for a theme park and a twelve foot high Pinocchio head. There were a handful of people working so we even got to see a little progress on the toy parts and Pinocchio.
All in all it was very interesting and the kids, with a little help, did a great job on the float too!
January 2, 1999
Well we just got back from Pasadena. Went down to see the floats of course. Unfortunately, so did a million other people! The place was packed wall to wall. We drove down Colorado Blvd (the parade route) and, after driving around trying to find a place to park, we got to see the floats.
They are beautiful... not as big as I thought they were... but beautiful. It was interesting to see them for real but I don't think I want to brave the crowds and the looong walk to do it again!
January 13, 1999
After spending five days at Salton Sea State Park we're are now in Yuma, AZ. Had a little trouble getting here... spent a night in a rest stop about 20 miles out of town then limped in to Yuma at about 20 miles an hour. The catalytic converter got plugged up again! Only $425 and we're running again.
Could have been worse... we called Buddy & Gail Lee (people we met in YC) and they helped us find the muffler shop and took us to lunch while the truck was being fixed. They also got us reservations at their RV Resort and loaned us one of their two golf cars to use while we're here. Pretty cool heh? We've been driving around all over and back and forth to the laundry in it. This place is big... 850 spaces built in and around an 18 hole golf course!
Buddy & Gail took us to the old Arizona Territorial Prison. Pretty neat to see how they treated prisoners in the old days. And then to Wal Mart to buy some new batteries and a new sewer hose.
Our house batteries died while we were at Salton Sea... another $85. And I lost my brand new sewer hose and fittings. I had it in the back of the truck when we left Marks but it was gone when we got to Salton Sea. I didn't replace it before because I still had my old hose and fittings. I need two lengths to reach the sewer line at Marks but the sewer connection is even farther away here. I just bought a cheap hose ($6) at Wal Mart to use here and I'm using my old fittings again.
We also had a piece of angle iron fall off the trailer. Lucky we were in town and on a residential street. We picked it up and I'll get it welded back on when I find a welding shop. It's no big deal. I think it's just a little reinforcement under the subfloor for the holding tanks. It was just tack welded between the frame rails and I guess the twisting while traveling broke the welds. We never travel far with the tanks full so shouldn't be too much stress.
Despite the problems which I can live with... except for the bite on the bank account... we are having a really good time! And the weather is wonderful! We had to run the air conditioner in the truck while we were driving around today 8^). For weather like this I can handle the desert. Although, here in Yuma there is a lot of agriculture and it reminds me alto of Yuba City in the spring time... warm but not hot.
If we could find someplace cheap to stay (it's going to cost us about $200 counting $25 for phone service to stay her a week) we may come back to Yuma next year.
January 16, 1999
Well, it's Saturday night. We got up about 7 this morning and went to breakfast with Buddy & Gail and their gang. About twenty couples go to breakfast every Saturday morning at a restaurant in town. It was too early for me but we had a good time. Nice people all.
After breakfast we went to a crafts fair in old town with Buddy & Gail. Then went exploring a little on our own.
Spent the rest of the day trying to get Fran's Powerbook work on the net. I downloaded some updated software and got my computer working pretty well but Fran's didn't seem to benefit from the upgrade at first. I think it's working okay now.
Tomorrow morning Buddy & Gail want us to come to breakfast at their house. Buddy's been telling me he's going to fix me biscuits and gravy since last year so I guess he figures this is his chance. Two more days and we'll be on the road again.
January 18, 1999
This is our last day here in Yuma. Tomorrow we will be on the road to Quartzsite. Don't know how long we will be there maybe overnight maybe two or three days. Then up to Lake Havasu and then to Needles.
Once we get to Needles, we may head east to the Grand Canyon or west and start working our way back home. Which way depends on how the bank account holds up. We've spent waaay too much here in Yuma not even counting the catalytic converter and new batteries. Not complaining, really, we've had a good time and you have to splurge once in a while.
If all goes well we can get by cheap for a few days at Quartzsite staying in the desert. And when we are moving from one place to another we can stay overnight in truckstops and rest areas for free. So, time will tell.
January 19, 1999
What can we say about Quartzsite that you haven't heard already? Well, everything you've heard cannot prepare you for Quartzsite! You either love it or hate it. We love it! See an aerial view of Quartzsite, AZ
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Last modified on: February, 11 1999.