Thursday, 17 March 2011

03/03/2011 - 16/03/2011 LV - Death Valley - LV

One thing that I did forget to mention in the previous Blog was that when we were waiting for our driver and passenger chairs to be re-upholstered, we needed to move sites.  Well of course we didn't have any chairs so out came the camper chair for Dave to drive - luckily we didn't need to go far.

03/03/2011 - LV Speedway.  Today we headed on over to the LV Speedway for NASCAR (never thought it would be something that  I would do).  The first bonus was that when we pulled along the RV Park is that the Nellis Air Force Base is just across the ride.  We have front row seats for all the flying over of the Jets, Bombers, Thunderbirds and other assorted aircraft.  The Thunderbirds are also at this base at the moment as they will be doing a flyover on Saturday and Sunday.  Another first for me I never thought I could just sit and watch these magnificent flying craft take off, fly, do some tricks and land, for hours on end.  I've seen some aircraft that really look like UFO's.  In the afternoon we went for a wander over to the track for a look around.  Inside the track the Sam's Town 300 Practice was going on and it wasn't long before the Big Fella had his fingers in his ears trying to drown out the noise - it was a lot louder than listening to the Jets etc fly over. So our first stop tomorrow will be to get the Big Fella some ear plugs.  After we had wandered back to our RV Site we got talking to our neighbours at the back (Linda and Ray).  They have been coming to this track ever since it opened and have spare tickets where they are sitting - a lot higher up and a lot less noisy.  So they gracefully offered us their spare tickets.  Apparently it has taken them a while to get these season tickets - 7 years- so we are very luck and very grateful - they could spare Dave's ears.  I mean it's not as if he hasn't had to put up with a lot of noise lately, and I speak so softly, you think he would be used to it by now.

04/03/2011 - LV Speedway.  On our way over to the track we visited our other next door neighbours to the left who didn't have any tickets for Friday - so they got lucky and got our tickets.  We said to them that if they wanted any more for Saturday / Sunday to let us know and we would sell them ours, so that we could give Linda and Ray some money to give to their friends who unfortunately had to pull out at the last minute.  We wandered over to the track to see the Kobalt Tools 400 qualifying.  The new seats that we have are fantastic, they are up a lot higher so you can see the entire track and the noise isn't so deafening (although the Big Fella still had his ear plugs in).  We were lucky enough to see Marcus Ambrose (from Tasmania) qualify 2nd on the Pole.  His average speed was approx. 300km's per hour.  Back in Stubbie that evening our two neighbours dropped by to thank us for the seats and then bought our tickets for Saturday and Sunday - so at least we can give Linda and Ray some money to give to their friends.

 05/03/2011 - LV Speedway.  Today the helicopters started flying in - it is $500 for a round trip from Las Vegas - it is amazing just how many people use this mode of transport.  We wandered around the Track area etc.  We have estimated that there would be close to 4000 RV's here - it really is amazing.  We watched the Sam's Town 300 race.  It is 300 miles, the track is 1.5 miles long so it was 200 laps.  Dave and I where actually relieved when we found out it was 200 laps, being the novices that we are we thought it was 300 laps - it was going to be a long day.  After about 50 laps we were starting to count down, but a nice cold Strawberry Margarita fixed that problem so we sat back and enjoyed the rest of the race before heading back to Stubbie.  After a wee rest for the Big Fella we went and had a drink with our next door neighbours - who gave us some interesting facts.  NASCAR racing started out in the deep south, when the moonshine runners started to suped up their cars to outrun the police. Then of course everyone was bragging that they had the fastest car, so of course they started to race around a dirt track - and that's where it all began.  After dinner we then headed on over to Ray and Linda's place for yet another drink (so much for drying out), where they tried and enjoyed some of Dave's Bundy Rum, their enjoyment didn't last too long when the Big Fella bought out the Vegemite - I think Linda's comment was that she didn't really go for it.

 06/03/2011 - LV Speedway.  The day for the Big Race has arrived and as we found out it starts early.  We were woken up by helicopters flying over at 6:00am.  We headed on over to the track around 10:30, where we wandered around for a bit (oh and bought some Daiquiris) before heading on up to our seats.  The Las Vegas Speedway has seating for approximately 150,000 it was going to be a busy day.  The Kobalt 400 is 400 miles - better keep those ice cold drinks coming.  One of the pre race activities was watching a helicopter doing some stunts over the side of the track - this was incredible, I've never seen a helicopter being maneuvered like that.  We thoroughly enjoyed the race and we were very glad that we came - I loved the social side and watching all the people and cars / trucks.  We did feel left out though as we were about the only ones that didn't have flags flying from their Rigs, racing stripes down the side of either car / track and or RV and we didn't have the right apparel to wear, everyone seems to have a Shirt and Jacket supporting their team.  Another thing that interested Dave and I was to count how many people could fit on top of one RV - 13 was
 the most that we could count.  Marcos Ambrose finished in 4th place, which we thought was a great result.  After the race we wandered back to the RV park and had a few drinks first with our neighbours on our left Rick and Gary. Rick was talking about one of his mates who is a producer for The Legends Show, so he is going to try and get some free tickets for us - what a bonus, but of course that means we will need to hang around Vegas for another couple of days.  After drinks with Rick and Gary, we wandered over to our neighbours at the back, Ray and Linda, for a quick chat and time to say good bye.

07/03/2011 - Today we need to pack up and move on - of course into Vegas.  I know this might come as a complete surprise, but I think we were in the last group of 10 to leave - remembering there was about 4000 RV's here - oh well some things never change.

08/03/2011 -10/03/2011. We arrive back into Vegas - and have decided that it is time to get our front TV fixed - so the Big Fella gets it out and takes it over to a repair shop.  The TV intermittently goes all static - of course it doesn't always happen when you want it to.  So after Dave drops it off at the shop - it sits there going for a day or two before it actual happens.  We've had a couple of relaxing days and have decided that tomorrow we will head off to Death Valley and wait for the diagnosis on the TV.

11/03/2011 - Today we have arrived at Death Valley and go and take a look at the golf course just across the road and book ourselves in for a game of golf - yeah.  The Big Fella is excited it's his first chance (other than the driving range) to try out his new clubs. For me this will be the first time I've even hit the clubs - so we are both looking forward to it - of course like usual there is always a bet on it - we decided that The Big Fella would give me 14 shots. After organising our golf etc we drove up to Dante's view for a spectacular view looking down at the Badlands. It is just so beautiful to sit out in the middle of nowhere and look up at the night sky - very relaxing and quiet - a bit of a change from the last few weeks.

 12/03/2011 - Of course we are both up bright and early ready to hit the course.  The Furnace Creek Golf course is 214 feet below sea level - the lowest golf course in the world.  Well I don't want to brag - but hey it doesn't happen too often (okay never) after about 11 holes it was all over - I was 9 holes up on the Big Fella.  I was still really nervous as I have never ever ever even come close to beating the Big Fella off the stick.  I was two shots up after the first nine and coming into the 18th hole I only had to Bogey it to beat him - but yep you guessed it I choked - double Bogey - but still I'm so so happy we tied off the stick.  Something that I will remember for a very long time - I'm sure the Big Fella will try to forget it and get his revenge today. By the way we both had an 86.  One of the little quirks about this course is that when you need to go to the cafe / bar you just drive your cart right upto the window and order - you gotta love it.

13/03/2011 - Time to move to another campsite in Death Valley so off we go to Stovepipe Wells.  Today we have decided to go up to Darwin Falls and then up to Scotty's Castle.  The hike into Darwin Falls was quite an interesting hike - only for us a bit disappointing when you got to the Falls itself, it was small - but oh well we got some great exercise and really enjoyed the hike in and hike.  After Darwin Falls we head on up to Death Valley Scotty's Castle.

14/03/2011 - This morning we headed on up to the Mosaic Canyon for a 4 mile hike - what great exercise, there was a lot of uphill scrambling over rocks and boulders.  The hike was really beautiful seeing the different colours in their rocks and mountains and then to see how smooth some of the rocks were was just unbelievable, the rocks were so smooth that on the way down you just slide down them like a slippery slide, it was a lot easier coming down than going up.  After our hike we set off for Pahrump a little town we had noticed on the way up.  We are staying at Terrible's Casino RV Park - of course.  We are not far from a golf course - so of course the first thing we do is go and check it out - the Big Fella is keen for revenge.  The course looks absolutely magnificent and green - out in the middle of a desert.  The cost for playing before 12:00 is $65, after 12 $45 and then after 2 $25 which includes the cost of the cart - so we are all set-up for tee off at 2:10pm.  I must admit I'm scared, but I will always have Death Valley to remember.

15/03/2011 - Well - he got me by +6.  The Big Fella played really well and sunk some great putts.  The course 'Moutain Falls Golf Club' was absolutely beautiful and for me very challenging. It was hard to believe that you were playing out in the desert.  The grass was so green, off the fairways was just desert and then you would look up and the tops of the mountains were covered in snow.  Dave did say it was one of the best courses he has ever played.  I felt like I was at the beach - I kept finding those frustrating sand bunkers.  We played with two lovely people June and Gene from Colorado.  They were really surprised at how far the Big Fella and I could hit the ball and even more surprised at the accuracy of the Big Fella (show-off).  At one stage Gene hit a great shot which we all applauded and he then said that even a blind squirrel will find some nuts.  All in all  a great day.

16/03/2011 - Today will be spent in Pahrump and then we will be starting our journey over to Arizona - of course via Vegas.  I keep telling The Big Fella that all roads go through Vegas...  I had a lovely morning sitting outside of Stubbie feeding some of the local ducks.  They would let you hand feed them but they were quite vicious and it reminded me of Moose at a Buffet.

Another thing I didn't mention in the earlier blog was that Sim and H were so very kind in giving Dave and I each a gift before they left.  They got the Big Fella a lovely bell so that he could ring it in the morning for when he is ready for his breakfast in bed - as if he needs one, and then I got a lovely cup from Vegas - saying I got smashed in Vegas - as if I need reminding, I can still remember the hangover from hell, not the actual night.  Now after a couple of weeks of hearing Dave ring his bell - I'm ready to put it where the sun doesn't shine....

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