Making Our Way to Phoenix

In order for our roving retirement to work, we have to rove. As we all know, roving isn’t quite as easy now as it has been in the past. But it just isn’t practical for us to stay in the Bay Area for any stretch of time, so we went from the Bay to Las Vegas and on to Phoenix.

We are hoping to find some interesting things to do while we are here.

Flying to Las Vegas on Southwest Airlines seemed pretty normal except for the nearly empty airport. Southwest has committed to leaving the middle seat open, so boarding isn’t as stressful as before. The airline boarded the plane 10 people at a time instead of the usual groups of 30 and everyone wore their facemasks. Arrival at McCarran Airport in Vegas and getting an Uber seemed normal, too.

The new normal for travel

Visiting Our Treasures

Besides visiting with family, our goal for our visit to Las Vegas was to get some things out of our storage box, most notably our golf clubs, even though it is doubtful that I’ll be able to golf during our time in Arizona. We had an appointment to visit the box, which meant that they took it out of their warehouse and left it in the parking lot for us to access. We got there in the late morning and it was approaching 100 degrees outside.

It has been a year since we packed the box and checked the two locks securing it. I thought we had been carrying the keys for the locks on the box with us, but apparently that wasn’t the case. Naturally, my keys wouldn’t work on either lock. The guy working the PODs warehouse didn’t seem too surprised when I went inside and told him that my keys didn’t work and we would have to cut the locks off. Clearly, he had done this many times before and he kindly sold me a new lock for the box. Even opening the unlocked proved a challenge as a box had shifted in transit and was blocking operation of the door from the inside.

After We Got Into the Box

Once we got the door open, it was time to go through at least some of our stuff. The first things we hauled out were the golf clubs that we left near the door for easy access. Next, it was time to go through the four wardrobe boxes that were near the door. There were some clothes that I wanted and Mike was looking for a few kitchen things.

But it sure was hot outside, so Mike left to go get something to drink. Once he returned, we both needed to drink plenty of fluid and take frequent breaks because working the heat was very difficult. We finally finished going through what we could easily get to and then put everything back. By the time we were done, we were really hot, sweaty, hungry, and exhausted. Then we forgot to take pictures of our stuff sitting in the parking lot.

Restaurant Visit in Las Vegas

That brings me to our first eat-in restaurant visit since the first week of March. We found a little local place that had a bar and a restaurant and it was very dark inside. The food was just ok, but it sure was a treat to have a drink and food served to us. The pretzel bite appetizer was the best part of that meal but we were just jazzed to be able to go into a restaurant.

The next day we headed to Phoenix. We decided that we would try to see the Grand Canyon and some of the other sites in Northern Arizona on the way back to Las Vegas, whenever that is.

Visiting Wickenburg

The ride to Phoenix was supposed to be about 5 hours but about an hour outside of Phoenix is a town called Wickenburg. Wickenburg Ranch has another of the Trilogy active retirement communities that we wanted to check out for our Chapter 3. (The time when we want a home base in the US.)

The Wickenburg community is beautiful and the houses are nice, with many on the golf course. Still, most of the social activities are local and for us, the town just isn’t big enough to keep us engaged for long. So after a lovely afternoon visit, we crossed it off of our list of possible landing spots. It certainly was a nice way to break up the ride to Phoenix though.

Our Resort in Phoenix

Our home away from home, “I guess that is everywhere now” is a timeshare resort in Scottsdale. We have a one-bedroom condo with a full kitchen and a patio. The resort has a pool and a fitness facility but due to COVID, the pool time is restricted. When we arrived we got a wrist band with a specific color and a pool schedule that included each color.

They told us that they could only have 100 people in the pool at a time and that the chairs needed to be cleaned between people. At first, I was pretty bummed out but then we realized that they weren’t being strict about the times as long as the pool didn’t get too full. In the few days we have been here, we could pretty much go to the pool anytime we want to. I haven’t seen more than 35 people out there at a time so far.

Our view at the pool

Heading into the Tonto National Forest

We decided before we got here that we would try to schedule some activities for ourselves. One of those activities was going to check out a Trilogy community in North Scottsdale and the nearby Tonto National Forest. Our visit started in the late morning and because looking at model homes is so much fun it lasted until the middle of the afternoon.

Beautiful gold course community

After we finally left the beautiful golf course community with a great view of the mountains, we headed to the National Forest. The Tonto National Forest is only a few miles out of town to the northeast and it has picnic areas, trails, and the Rio Verde River. We had brought some food for lunch, so we found a picnic area to eat and just enjoy the great outdoors.

What do you want to do in Arizona?

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