Thursday, December 28, 2017

'17/#38 Just Things I Have Noticed

Well I hope everyone had a Happy Chanukah or Merry Christmas or what ever you did to celebrate this holiday season. We kept it real quiet. Christmas day was spent in our PJs binge watching all the Christmas shows we recorded all during the month of December. New Years will be much the same. There is a New Years party at the club house but our tradition is to watch the ball drop in Times Square. Since that is 11pm here, our New Year starts a little earlier than everyone else's around these parts.

Pharr Texas has been our home now for two months and I have noticed a couple of things. The first thing that stood out was the fashion sense of the women in the RGV or Rio Grande Valley. It doesn't matter what their size or age but the clothing leans toward "model sexy" if you know what I mean. Pants are too tight, skirts are too short, shorts are too tight and too short, and all this is accompanied by heels that just seem a bit too tall. Now don't get me wrong, there are some women of an age and body shape who can pull off this style and that is not the issue. It is the women who have reached the age where it looks ridiculous. I mean 60 years old and dressing like a teenager? Some of them are in great shape and could wear almost anything and look good....but c'mon! And regardless of age, there are those who can only get part of themselves into these clothes. It is the parts that are not covered and hanging out that make it just not right. And the shoes! So many of these women look like they are in pain and in danger of falling over. This is not a new phenomenon but it just seems more like the rule and not the exception around here.

Another thing we see around here and especially in McAllen are birds. We all know that birds fly south for the winter, but what I didn't know was that they all seem to come to McAllen. In Florida a parking spot in the shade of a tree is a bonanza. Here in McAllen it is a curse. I found a great parking spot near the door, under a tree in the shade and gave myself a mental "high-five".  You all know what I mean. We were inside the grocery store for less than an hour and by the time we returned to the parking lot the truck was covered in bird crap. If we had stayed in there for two hours I fear that we would have come back to a truck size pile of bird crap! When I got the truck to the car wash the guy told me that this is common around here. The other cars at car wash were no better off than our truck. Now I don't care how hot it gets or how bright the sun shines I will not park under a tree! In fact I scope out all the trees and strategically place the truck equidistant from every tree I see! The amount of birds is more than amazing, it is kind of scary. Mary says it reminds her of Alfred Hitchcock's "The Birds". You decide for yourself. It has gotten worse since these pictures were taken!

It is only a few more days until the New Year and time to put Christmas behind us. I am signing off now because today we will start taking down the decorations in our home here in Pharr Texas in the RGV because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Sunday, December 17, 2017

'17/#37 'Tis The Season

There are only eight days until Christmas and we are in the middle of celebrating Chanukah and the air is filled with good will. It is a wonderful time of year. It is a shame that this feeling and attitude can't stay around all year long. In our RV park there is an "Angel Tree" to try and give needy children a Merry Christmas, some of the women are weaving mats out of recycled plastic bags for the homeless, and of course there have been food collections going on since before Thanksgiving. We joined a number of other couples and donated our time to ring the bells for the Salvation Army at the Neighbohood Market.
We try to be charitable all year long and I know many others do also but this seems to be the time of year that most people step up. If you are one of those I thank you for your effots but also encourage you to think this way the rest of the year.

Our park has it's own bus and there are always trips going out to all kinds of events in the area. The residents go to concerts, shows, shopping, and restaurants as a group with Merlin as their chauffeur. This week we are joining them. One night we are going over to Hidalgo to see Christmas lights. Apparently there is quite the display in that town. Later on in the week we will take the bus to Progresso and do a little shopping in Mexico before Christmas. We don't need anything but it is fun to go and wander around. I'm sure we will find something we just can't live without.

We are just about done with all our own Christmas preparations. The decorations are done inside and we have an inflatable to set up outside. All the gifts we have gotten for family have been shipped and Christmas cards are almost done. A little grocery shopping for our Christmas Eve and Day dinners and then we will just sit back and binge watch holiday classics we have been recording all month.

I will try to blog again before Christmas but just in case Merry Chistmas from our home in Pharr Texas because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Friday, December 8, 2017

'17/#36 Vacation? From What?!?

We are still in Texas and this morning we are watching it snow outside our windows. The temperature was 34 degrees when I woke this morning and the high is expected to be in the mid 40's. We high-tailed it out of South Dakota to get away from the winter weather and this morning it is warmer in Keystone than it is here in Pharr. Go figure. Fortunately this weather is not the norm for this area, or so we've been told. Next week it is supposed to warm up again. Right now Mary has gone back to bed and is buried under the covers trying to stay warm.

The past 3 days we spent up in San Antonio, TX. It is a place I have been trying to take Mary for a number of years and we finally made it. Working 12 hours a week is exhausting and we needed a vacation. LOL! It was a 3 1/2 hour drive from Pharr to San Antonio and we stayed in a very nice hotel near the Riverwalk. We walked along the river and took a boat tour and enjoyed all the Christmas lights decorating the shops and landscaping along the Riverwalk.

Like I said we stayed in a nice hotel and for those of you familiar with RVing you know that the one thing that is missing in the bathroom is a tub. Within minutes of getting back to our room Mary was in the tub and soaking all here troubles away. I think she was looking forward to that tub more than seeing San Antonio. With the sounds of splashing and aaahs coming from the tub I just relaxed and let Mary enjoy herself until she became a giant prune. Life is good!

We did a little shopping while we were in San Antonio for things we couldn't find in Pharr. Being from New York I like my bagels and the frozen grocery store things they call bagels just won't do. We found a great bagel shop and stocked up so I could have my bagel fix every once in a while. I was doubly excited to see that they had bialys. If I have to tell you what a bialy is you wouldn't understand. Needless to say I was as happy with my bagels as Mary was with her bathtub.

While we were in San Antonio we were able to catch up with our friends Tommie and Burnie. We workcamped with them several years ago in Cody Wyoming and have stayed in touch with them. We actually haven't seen them since 2012 but it was like we had seen them just yesterday. The joys of the RV community and the connectivity of the internet, you gotta love it!

Well that is enough for now. I am going to enjoy one of my bagels here in our home in Pharr Texas because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary

Saturday, December 2, 2017

'17/#35 Texas vs Florida

Well we have been here in Texas a little over a month now and are settling in nicely. We have met a lot of great people and more are arriving every day as the winter progresses. Speaking of progressing, where has the year gone? Can you believe that it is already December? The rest of the holiday season and then 2018! WOW!

After spending 30 plus years in Florida we are noticing a few differences between the people who head south to avoid the cold and snow. They all like their Bingo and their social get togethers and there always seems to be a group on the shuffleboard courts. Golf seems to be the main attraction in Florida while here in Texas ready access to Mexico and the inexpensive drugs  and dentistry is the reason for so many who winter here. Another difference is their self-given titles. In Florida we know them as Snow Birds but here they are called Winter Texans. What ever you do don't call them Snow Birds down here. They take offense to that and that is why the locals cater to them even putting out a newspaper for them. Ain't that special?

 I guess we are now Winter Texans and will be part of the group until we leave sometime in the spring. Then we head north for a yet to be determined destination for the summer. I don't know what we will be called next winter. We might be back in Texas or find something in Arizona or New Mexico or even southern California. Our house is on wheels and our plans are written in jello, so we will see when the time comes.

Our day at work is almost over so I will close this blog for now at our home in Pharr Texas because....

Home is where we park it,
Frank and Mary