Friday, June 23, 2017

Visiting Dad Before Driving Miss Daisy To See Penny In Maricopa McDonald's

Yesterday, after my mid-morning visit with dad, I drove Miss Daisy to sister Jackie's so I could drive both Miss Daisy and sister Jackie to Maricopa so we could find Penny at one of the Maricopa McDonald's.

The finding Penny mission was accomplished soon upon arrival at the designated McDonald's, where I soon found myself enjoying a Southwest Salad, McNuggets, a Fish Sandwich, Fries and a large Coke.

That would be Penny you see in her kitchen where she was preparing our McDonald''s vittles in non-air conditioned comfort due to a slight temporary air conditioning malfunction affecting the kitchen and the area where kids play. The area where we enjoyed our McDonald's buffet remained blessed with air conditioned comfort.

After an hour, give or take a minute or two, we left Penny, and McDonald's, to venture further south, once again, to the Ak-Chin Casino where sister Jackie and I once again negotiated the maze of trails and noisy construction zones to find our way to the spot where we come into possession of a piece of paper we take through another maze to go to the pool zone where that piece of paper, yesterday, was exchanged for a hand held kitchen mixmaster type device.

Leaving the kitchen mixmaster area we soon came upon a cactus forest.

I was informed that at night the Ak-Chin Casino cactus forest lights up to create an eye pleasing display. I found the cactus forest to be eye pleasing even without night lights.

Soon after leaving the cactus forest we returned to where we had left mom, in the 10 minute hotel check-in parking space.

Leaving Maricopa it was an exciting drive back through the desert to the Phoenix metro zone, due to the gas gauge light indicating the gas tank wanted some gas. This gas need was indicated via flashing lights and an occasional slight beep which had me driving along hoping Miss Daisy did not hear the beeping

All ended well, gas need-wise, when I sputtered into a gas station in time to fill the tank before totally running out of that vitally needed fuel. It would likely quickly turn quite unpleasant to run out of gas when the temperature is tickling into the 120 degree realm of heat.

Tomorrow, early, I begin my two day trek back to Texas. I hope all goes well this trek. I will be taking the south return route, through El Paso. Which means east of El Paso, on I-10, I will be going through the annoying area where I will be checked to make sure I am not hiding any illegal aliens onboard....

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Seeing Dad Before Heading To Maricopa Seeking McDonald's Penny

What you are looking at here is the tropical-like pool zone of the Ak-Chin Casino Resort in Maricopa.

Maricopa is a town a short distance south of the Phoenix metro zone.

Maricopa has three McDonald's, one of which is the location of Penny. On Tuesday we did not find Penny at her McDonald's location.

We did find Penny at a slot machine in the Ak Chin Casino Resort.

Today we are returning to Maricopa to try and find Penny at her McDonald's, among other reasons to be in Maricopa.

Such as returning to the Ak-Chin Casino. On Tuesday we visited the casino to get a crock pot, along with what seemed to be hundreds of other people seeking crock pots. I have never seen so many people carrying crock pots. Or sitting at slot machines with their crock pots.

Apparently if one visits the Ak-Chin Casino frequently enough one gets to get an assortment of kitchen appliances. Like I said, we are returning to Maricopa today, including going to the casino. I think today I am going to be seeing a lot of people, if I remember right, toting an electric mixer beater type device.

On Tuesday to get the crock pot we made our way through the throng of people playing various games til we got to a location where two pieces of paper were shown to one of the ladies checking the paper pieces. Then another piece of paper was given to my sister. We then meandered a confusing maze of halls til we arrived at the cool pool you see above.

Under a shaded zone near the ;pool was the biggest collection of crock pots I have ever eye witnessed. You can see some of those crock pots below.

That would be my dear sister, Jackie, soon after taking possession of one of the crock pots. We then joined all the other people toting crock pots and gradually made our way through the confusing maze of halls til we came to the location from whence we entered. Soon we found ourselves back in air conditioned car comfort with our dear mother where we left her with the engine and air conditioning running.

On Tuesday I had one of the new McDonald's signature sandwiches. A BBQ bacon crispy chicken, with equally crispy onion on an artisan bun. Plus a fish sandwich and maybe a couple other items. Today I will go lighter with one of the McDonald's signature salads. And maybe a fish sandwich.

I am currently in the lobby of my dad's current location. Mom is in with dad. Lunch should soon arrive. Dad was not too perky this morning. I left them with mom asking dad if he wanted chocolate milk and a banana...

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Following Elsie Hotpepper Technical Computer Advice Arizona Malfunction

I asked for technical advice from that well known computer whiz, Elsie Hotpepper, regarding trying to get on to my computer an infamous photo of me eating way too many McDonald's products at my dad's Happy Father's Day All You Can Eat McDonald's Buffet.

Elsie cleverly advised me to use the phone blogging Blogger app to upload the photo from my phone. I followed Elsie's precise instructions.

But, when I got my computer back online, after getting dad back to his room, after another successful exercise therapy session, I opened the blogger program and the saved from the phone blog post, but the infamous photo of me eating way too many McDonald's products at my dad's Happy Father's Day All You Can Eat McDonald's Buffet was nowhere to be seen.

I suspect it will take til I am back in Texas, reunited with the cable which connects the phone to the computer, to get that notorious photo off my phone.

Meanwhile when I looked for that photo possibly being somewhere in the Google Cloud I clicked on a photo titled Durango New Mexico and soon found myself wondering as to the when and where of the above photo.

This photo would be from sometime back in the previous decade. I believe the rock behind me is called Shipwreck Rock, or some such similar name. I do not ever remember having a blue baseball cap. Blue has never been one of my favorite colors.

Back to the present.

Arrived at dad's location around ten. Found him in the therapy room walking the parallel bars. The physical therapist told us dad is making good progress of late. I was surprised by how fast he was moving on the parallel bars.

Soon mom and I will be leaving here, going to pick up sister Jackie, and then heading south to Maricopa to see Penny at McDonald's. I suspect one of those new fangled McDonald's signature burgers is in my future for day...

Monday, June 19, 2017

Day After Father's Day Dad Takes A Long Walk

Back to the latest episode of the Days of Our Lives, also known as American Horror Story: Seinfeld.

Arrived at dad's place in time for his morning therapy session. Well, the end of the therapy session. Dad had finished 20 minutes on the elliptical trainer.

The Physical Therapist came out to see mom and me to tell us that dad would now be walking back to his room.

Huh? Mom and I sort of reacted at the same time.

Soon mom and I found ourselves following dad, walking, all the way back to his room. We went from two days ago being told dad had walked fifteen feet to this morning he walked all the way back to his room.

Back in his room I left mom and dad to return to the lobby to wait for my sister and the hearing aid expert to arrive.

When the hearing aid expert arrived he quickly determined there was nothing wrong with dad's hearing aids. Except, uh, the filter needed replacing. An extremely little filter installed from the end of an extremely small stick. My sister got the lesson on how to perform this task. I knew it was far beyond my technical expertise.

A few minutes after the hearing aid expert exited dad indicated he would not mind getting HOT. And so we exited the lobby to the courtyard, where we enjoyed the HEAT for a short duration, before crossing the courtyard to exit to the location where movies and church takes place.

Above you see sister Jackie moving dad into a HEAT absorbing position, with mom providing directional advice. Dad is in celebrity mode with the sunglasses, hiding from the paparazzi.

Tomorrow Jackie is taking mom and me to Maricopa to see Penny at McDonalds. This will take place after the noontime dad visit. I do not know why I am not exhausted. Today began with a long swim with Ann, Phyllis and the rest of the ladies, including the Grande Dame, Jacqui...

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Dad's Father's Day McDonald's Buffet With Uncle Mooch & Tillie

So. My dad's Father's Day All You Can Eat McDonald's Buffet went off okay.

Opening right on schedule a half hour before noon. Well, maybe a few minutes past that half hour before noon mark.

Dad's new hearing aid was misbehaving today, so tomorrow we are bringing in the hearing aid doctor to figure out what is wrong.

In the partial picture of those attending my dad's Father's Day McDonald's Buffet that would be my little brother, Spencer Jack's grandpa, and Jason and Joey's dad, Jake, on the far left. Next to Jake you are looking at my number two sister, Jackie, who is not a grandma but is the mom of Christopher and Jeremy, who were not in attendance. In the middle, looking at me, is the aforementioned dad. Big Blue on the right is my brother-in-law, Jack, who also is the husband of my sister Jackie and the dad of Christopher and Jeremy.

Miss Daisy, also known as my mom, is partially visible under Big Blue.

An incriminating photo of me was taken by sister Jackie, showing me double fisting a couple burger, with an array of McDonald's products in front of me. Unfortunately I am unable to share this photo due to it having been sent to my phone and due to the fact I left the phone connector to my computer back in Texas.

Dad's Father's Day McDonald's Buffet marks the first time I have actually heard mom refer to me as Gerry, aka Uncle Mooch. Last night, on the way home from seeing dad, mom confessed to repeatedly referring to me as Gerry.I told mom I had been told she had been doing such, but that I had not noticed.

Until today.

Continuing the theme, today, at least for awhile, dad thought sister number two, Jackie, was sister number one, Nancy. This became apparent when dad asked Jackie a dog question about sister Nancy's dog, Tillie. Something like "how's Tillie doing?"

Yesterday Spencer Jack's dad texted me he was arriving in Arizona tonight. But Spencer Jack's grandpa knew nothing of this arrival, as of when I saw Spencer Jack's grandpa this morning.

The heat has begun to get HOT. Miss Daisy sent me into Walmart this afternoon on the way to see dad. Dad had requested a chapstick lip balm type product. I do not know if the lip balm survived the bout in the heat before returning to air conditioned safety.

I guided Miss Daisy to dad's room and left as I heard mom telling dad she had something for him. I assume mom was referring to the lip balm.

I currently feel like I am living in a TV show. A sort of hybrid of Seinfeld and American Horror Story....

Happy Father's Day With Dad In Arizona & McDonald's

It is the morning of the 2017 version of Father's Day. I do not remember when last, til today, I actually saw my dad on Father's Day, but on this Father's Day I have already said Happy Father's Day to my dad and given him a Happy Father's Day hug.

And what a blessing. No hearing aid drama this morning. So far.

I went swimming this morning, all alone. Apparently all the Sun Lakes ladies, and the Grande Dame, take Sunday off.

In the view above you are outside my dad's room, in the covered patio zone. That would be the window of dad's room you see on the right.

If I remember right we are supposed to get heated to 114 today. 119 tomorrow. Yesterday early evening it was a bit brutally HOT during the dad visit, just the transit from vehicle to interior air conditioned comfort. To maximize my heat related discomfort today I am in long pants. I figured I'd try this sort of modified Arab method of dealing with HEAT. We shall see how well that works out.

Last night I reserved the special activity room for today's noontime Happy Father's Day McDonald's Buffet of all my dad's McDonald's favorites. I am hoping this includes my McDonald's favorite, that being the Fish Sandwich. I have not had a McDonald's Fish Sandwich since the last time I was in Arizona, five years ago.

I vaguely recollect my sister telling me this coming week she may take me and mom south to Maricopa to see Penny at one of that town's three McDonald's. Penny manages one of three McDonald/s and has been asking where my mom and dad have been of late. I do not think we will be bringing dad along on this McDonald's expedition.

I am currently planning on beginning my return to Texas this coming Saturday morning. Mom is planning on loading me up on frozen things, like banana bread and apple sauce, and unfrozen things like raspberry jam....

Saturday, June 17, 2017

Pre-Father's Day Banana With Dad & Miss Daisy

That is my dear ol' dad you see here, one day before Father's Day. I drove Miss Daisy to dad this morning earlier than the norm. We had grapes, a banana and a chocolate milk for dad.

I tried to snap the picture whilst dad was sipping his chocolate milk and holding the banana, but by the time the flash went off the chocolate milk had been lowered and the banana lifted into position.

This morning I learned I now know how to install hearing aids. The one marked red goes in the right ear. That really is all you need to remember. When the right one goes in it starts talking to the left one, with high pitched beeps.

Upon installation dad perks up. I got out my phone and asked dad to smile for Michele. He instantly did so, but my phone takes forever to take a picture. The photo use see above was taken via my old-fashioned digital camera. The phone version manages to do its thing without snapping a flash.

Today is Spencer Jack's dad birthday. I heard from Spencer Jack's dad that he is flying in on Father's Day for some relative experience. I do not know if Spencer Jack is also flying in.

Tomorrow, for Father's Day, sister Jackie is delivering to dad an all you can eat smorgasbord buffet of all dad's McDonald's favorites. I hope this includes multiple fish sandwiches. I know it includes sausage egg McMuffins. And maybe breakfast burritos.

Last night mom and I made lasagna. And fresh corn on the cob. Somehow in the middle of an extremely HOT desert I managed to have the tastiest, sweetest best corn on the cob ever. We will be having a corn on the cob repeat this evening.

The dire HEAT ARMAGEDDON begins tomorrow, starting at 114, going up to 119 for Monday, then 120, or maybe 121, for Tuesday, continuing on with this baking til a slight cooling arrives later in the week.

My only swimming companion this morning was Donna. The rest of the ladies take the weekend off. They may also take the HEAT wave off, or at least they were speculating such last time I pooled with them.

I am delaying my exit from the Valley of the Sun until this HEAT wave passes.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Arizona Morning Driving Miss Daisy To Pickle Ball & Dad

This morning's Arizona adventure, after a night of imaginary air-conditioner malfunctioning, was driving Miss Daisy, I mean my mom, to Dobson Ranch Park to see my sister, Jackie, playing Pickle Ball.

We managed to eventually find one of the Dobson Ranch Parks, in Dobson Ranch, somewhere in Mesa. Well, I am fairly certain it was Mesa, and that we were north of Chandler.

Eventually Miss Daisy and I found ourselves lost in a maze of cul-de-sacs.

Calling sister Jackie was our go to rescue. Jackie then directed us to the particular Dobson Park Ranch where Pickle Ball is played.

That is Jackie you see above, the Pickle Baller in blue. I watched Jackie's team win one game, 11 to 0. And then it was time to return to Miss Daisy who I had left behind in the vehicle, with no shade. And no window down. I understand this is a bad thing to do when the temperature gets into, or beyond, the 100 degree range.

Leaving Pickle Ball, Miss Daisy and I drove back home to Sun Lakes where we foraged various freezers til we found frozen lasagna. Lasagna is on tonight's dinner menu. Last night it was barbecued steak with cheesy cauliflower, jicama, pineapple, watermelon and broccoli salad.

I have consumed more beef in one week in Arizona than the past five years in Texas.

Yesterday dad had a great day, was liking his new hearing aid, was actually having a conversation with Miss Daisy without painful confusions, with the previous painful confusions often coming from the Miss Daisy vicinity.Yesterday both mom and dad had their hearing aids in working order, thus enabling the good day.

Today we arrived to find dad quickly telling us he needs his hearing aids put in. I find them in a drawer. I tell Miss Daisy I will go find someone to install them. Mom did not want me to find someone to help. Why? I do not know. So, I got a hearing aid installer who had trouble installing. Dad kept saying it hurt. Eventually the left ear was okay. But we gave up on the right ear.

These are custom made hearing aids, designed specifically for each ear, plainly differentiated. But the nurse trying to install them did not know which one was supposed to go in which ear, or that the button on the aid had three settings, easily accidentally pushed, I assume, when struggling to insert the things.

Mom insisted sister Jackie would take care of the problem. I returned to the lobby where my computer is located and called sister Jackie to inform her of the latest episode in the Days of Our Lives. I am now awaiting hearing from Jackie about when the hearing aid helper, Jennifer, will arrive, if ever.

I really never thought I would say such a thing. But, I miss Texas....

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Swimming With Arizona Grande Dames While Uncle Mooch Takes Mom To Dad

Every morning, for the past five mornings, I have found myself swimming with a growing number of local ladies.

It started with just Ann and Phyllis. And then several other ladies were added to the mix.

And then a couple days ago someone who preferred not to be referred to as a lady, but instead a Grande Dame, showed up. The Grande Dame's name is Jacqui. A fancy way of spelling my sister, Jackie's, name..

A couple hours after the regular morning swim with the coterie of ladies, and the Grande Dame, mom opted not to do the regular pester, I mean, visit with my dad. Instead I went to my aforementioned sister Jackie's place to utilize her wi-fi and do some more pooling. The pool pics did not turn out to my selfie satisfaction. But the view of the front of my sister's house, which you see above, did turn out to my satisfaction.

Being at my sister's, with a normal internet connection, I was able to see what my phone Blogger app bloggings look like.

Not good.

With one, the photo did not appear. Paragraph breaks did not exist. And the picture showed up at the bottom, with one of them sized way too big. Maybe I need to explore the 'settings' part of the phone Blogger app.

Some time after noon I returned to my mom's location. I thought mom would be all antsy to get to my dad.

Instead we dawdled.

Mom thought dad was in a bad mood yesterday. Mom can not see. Dad got new hearing aids yesterday which resulted in me having what will go down in my memory history as one of the most poignant moments I have ever experienced. I have no idea why mom thinks she can accurately perceive dad's moods.

This entire experience of being here with mom and dad has been a bit overwhelming. My siblings, well the three of the four I have seen and talked to, have helped me get through this day to day.

Eventually mom and I left Sun Lakes and headed north to dad. On the way we made our regular drive-thru McDonald's. Today it was double cheeseburgers and large Cokes. Well, I had a Coke, mom surprisingly went the diet Dr. Pepper route. Dr. Pepper is a Texas thing. I don't know where my mom picked up this bad habit.

I delivered mom to dad, who was in bed peacefully resting. I left mom there before I had to witness mom disturbing dad's restful slumber.

I am now in the lobby, with my laptop, looking at the view you see below.

Dad's room is to the left of the view you see here. It looks like I am sitting outside, but actually you are looking out a big wall of glass.

We are heading into record breaking heat here, arriving on Monday. Each day's forecast seems to increase the degree by one. Several days ago Monday was to be 119 degrees, then it went up to 120, but cooler on Tuesday. This morning Monday went up to 121, with Tuesday potentially hotter.

I have been above 120 only once, with Spencer Jack's dad and Spencer Jack's favorite Uncle Joey, way back in 1998, in Death Valley. The weather forecasters here make it sound like a weather Armageddon is coming with dire worries about the electrical grid.

I just remembered another time I have been above 120. Also in Death Valley, with Big Ed and Dale. If I remember right it was 124 at Badwater, that being the location of the lowest level below sea level in this hemisphere. I do not think the Phoenix zone is below sea level. I don't know what the Valley of the Sun's excuse is for getting so hot.

I suppose I should go check on my mom and dad. Mom likely has been pushing the red button to get someone to get dad up. When he needs to rest.

Have I mentioned my mom has forgotten who I am? She calls me Gerry. Sometime she realizes I am not Gerry. Gerry is my dad's youngest brother, known to me and my siblings as Uncle Mooch.

Mom better not start calling me Uncle Mooch. That name is reserved for only one person. And it is not me...

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Lemon Tree Not So Sweet Day 8 Out Of Texas

Found a super sweet orange hanging solo on tree in mom and dad's backyard. Mom and I had it for breakfast.

Later took the picture you see here in mom and dad's front yard. I think it's a lemon tree. Surrounded by cactus.

With a flag trying to blow in the wind.

This morning mom asked me to raise the flag because she saw it was Flag Day. Mom knew this via a calendar she isn't supposed to be reading due to being sorta blind.

Driving to dad we saw a lot of flags, so once again mom is right.

In a couple hours dad gets a new hearing aid. One of my favorite sisters should be showing up for that.

We are heading to possibly record breaking temps in a few days.

120 degrees.

I suspect mom will finally agree to turn on the air conditioning...