Within the first few days of April the population at Palm Creek dropped substantially. Each day it appeared as though someone had organized a parade of vehicles
out to the freeway. Those of us left here, however, have been enjoying the peace and quiet and the lack of traffic within the park and in town. There are few lines
at Walmart and the grocery stores :-)
Our routines didn't change much, in spite of fewer people in the park. Surprisingly, at least for the first couple weeks of the month, all the tennis courts were full
each morning. The weather remained pleasant and we didn't find the need to get there early to avoid the heat. Tom was keeping busy at his weekly stint being a
"starter" on the golf course and Mary's shifts in the Activities Office were also busy. Getting tee times was a lot easier, though, and we frequented the golf course
a little more often. Mary had injured her shoulder last fall and finally decided that medical attention might be a good idea, so she made regular visits to physical
therapy this month...and is much improved. When she was discharged she discovered that she gets to use the therapy gym for free for a month...so the workouts
In the middle of the month, Mary took a "vacation" and flew to Michigan for a week's visit with her Mom. They enjoyed the time to just chat and be together along
with plenty of shopping and some meals out. They also drove to Toledo for a couple of nights, staying at Mary's brother and sister-in-law's home and doing more
shopping and visiting in the old home town. The week went fast and all to quickly she was back in Arizona.
With those "left behind" we managed to have a few activities that we do best....eat. Our friends Char and Terry Eicher invited us to join them and another couple for
a great dinner. And our remaining neighbors had one last cookout. Many of those have now returned north as well...some of them not having a very good time
getting through icy mountain passes and snow-blocked freeways.
|Terry Eicher cooked us a delicious prime rib dinner and we enjoyed
an evening on Terry and Char's patio with Earlene and Jack Riggins.
|Marilou and Harry Forsburg provided a patio in the shade and Dennis
and Connie Shafer brought the burgers for us to share with Dick and
Alice Wells, Mary and Tedd Duncan and Bob Daniel.
|Mary and her Mom spent an afternoon
walking among the blooming
daffodils, dogwoods and redbuds at
Jackson's Cascades Park
|In Toledo there was a visit with Mom's childhood friend and "maid
of honor" (in 1943), Betty and her husband Dan. They live in a
beautiful home in Toledo's historic "Old West End."
|It was a wonderful visit over several days with brother Bill and his
wife Beth...and to add to the celebration they accepted an offer to
sell their home while we were there.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch........life at Palm Creek was heating up -- in more ways than one. The weather was sunny and hot...finally some beautiful spring
weather. Tom played a lot of golf while Mary was back in Michigan, and on Saturday April 17 he got a "Hole-In-One" on the 18th hole of the Palm Creek Golf
course. Needless to say, he was quite pleased, as were his golfing buddies, Paul and Dick. Later that night the heat was not so good...around 3am there were
some loud explosions of tires and propane tanks and a large fire that resulted in almost a million dollars in damage. Three large Class A motor homes and a large
5th Wheel trailer parked in the "storage area" of Palm Creek were totally destroyed. Several other rigs were badly damaged enough to have to be trucked away
for repairs. A park model waiting to be installed was also badly damaged. Sadly, the fire is said to be of suspicious origin and as we write this update, there have
been no arrests. Most of the rig owners were still in the park-staying in their park models-and preparing to depart in their RVs in a few days. The Fire Marshall
has made his inspection as well as the insurance companies and most of the damaged rigs have been removed from the park. Repairs will take a while, so some
owners have had to change their travel plans and at least one has bought a new rig and hit the road again.
|The rear end is all that was left of these two rigs. An empty space
just to the right of these rigs was supposed to be occupied by a
friend's rig, but they had not re-parked it there yet after using it for a
|This side view of another rig looked very similar to the others. The
motor home in the rear (which belongs to one of our tennis buddies)
is being repaired
|Workers somehow got the damaged rigs onto flat bed trailers for a
trip to a salvage yard or insurance investigation barn. They did put
tarps over them for the road trip.
|Here's Tom trying to recreate his "Hole-In-One" on the 18th hole. The
rocks in the middle line the creek that runs through the course.
|Other than some wild winds, April ended pretty quietly here at Palm Creek. We have a
few events scheduled for early May and expect that somewhere around the middle of
the month we'll be getting back on the road, heading east.
|We're anxious to visit with Merrick, Coffey
and Close who were all dressed up for
their Girl Scout troop "Princess Ball" this