Saturday, February 23, 2013

Big Sky Country is not just for Montana

Arizona and Mother Nature are such kidders. Snow. Ha! Ha! Knock it off.

Looking toward Tucson

Kitt Peak. My pique.

Not great skies for our batteries. Just turn off the distractions and go outside.

This is a good example of the kind of property you'd find for sale around here. This piece would be nice for driving onto; it has no ditch, and is fairly level. Nice view!

The problem is I found this walking. We tried to drive to it in our rugged little 4x4, but no way. Impassable from both directions. We suspect this was purchased sight-unseen.

Where we're staying, a good neighbor drags the roads after precipitation. That keeps things very accessible here, but we're learning that's a rarity. 

You will be off-grid on this land (and probably stay that way), and there are no water or sewer services out here. Roads are not maintained - put on your big-girl boots, city gal! On the other hand, you'll pay the kind of taxes that indicate you're not getting any services.

One of the "maintained" roads. Don't wait around for county services - you don't pay enough taxes for that.

Enough of that nature-y stuff. WE MET NINA AND PAUL! They're pretty busy with their own stuff right now, but we're so happy they could be badgered and cajoled into joining us for lunch! They're exactly as fun as you imagine them. Nina has been so extremely helpful to us in living this way. She educates us with her blog, and she has always been great about answering my questions in a way that didn't sound like she was rolling her eyes.

Brenda and Karin introduced us to Blue Willow in Tucson. She suggests that it's the perfect meet-up restaurant, and she may be right. There's a gluten-free menu and a vegan menu, besides a lot of conventional choices. 

Nina and Paul tell us that the Benchmark Atlases are worth every penny. I keep hearing that, so we'll invest. We'll start with the ones we're likely to use first, like Arizona and New Mexico.

Nina is a long-time dog trainer, and gave us some good advice about Franklin Jackson. In just a few hours of using her tips, he was more relaxed and focused on us. He sits for food, and before going outside. He has a naturally gentle disposition, and the cat situation is going well.

The G-A-S problem has subsided. Franklin's is better, too.

Pin It


AlliKitty said...

Franklin Jackson must think he's died and gone to heaven. What a lucky boy, and what lucky Ducks!

The Odd Essay said...

You're right... Montana has nothing on your Arizona skies! Fantastic! Glad to hear Franklin is working out okay... he's so fortunate to have found you two.

sierrasue said...

Beautiful Photos !!I Love those days with big white clouds in the sky.
I am so glad the doggie is working out!!

Desert Diva said...

Beautiful sky photos - you're becoming quite the photographer. I'm glad Franklin is "working out." He seems like a nice boy! I'm coming to Tucson in a couple of weeks for a Tango festival. I'd "like" to find a boondocking situation near the hotel (Holiday Inn Airport), but if not I'll just stay at the casino. Of course, I want to see "the duck's" when I'm in the area (probably before and/or after the festival).

Suzanne said...

Two of my favorite bloggers together...I love it!

Amazing cloud shots. Very dramatic.

That Franklin is stealing the show...he is one lucky tumbleweed!

Brenda A. said...

Well that certainly explains the weird weather situation in was the convergence of the Ducks and Nina & Paul! Cool.

And thanks for the mention. And happy to see Blue Willow love being spread. :)

Janie and John said...

So is that land kind of like " ocean front property in Arizona"? We had snow in Tucson a couple years ago, maybe its just going to be a pattern now.

Linda Sand said...

Janie/John, You go wash your mouth out! It is NOT going to be a pattern!

Kim said...

Let's call him Francisco. You picked him up in the desert. He had no papers. And I'm guessing he doesn't speak English.

Mike and Terri said...

So glad Franklin is adjusting well to the whole family. He's one lucky dog joining the Good Luck Duck family!

Michelle said...

What beautiful pictures you take!
Its a small world after all or is it just that travelers go to the same place?
Franklin looks so sweet in that picture with you. Hey out of curiosity he neutered?

The Good Luck Duck said...

Thanks, Michelle! I think it's some of both. This time of year, there aren't a lot of places where nomads can stay warmish.

Yep, his bags are unpacked.

Nice of you to say so, Mike and Terri. I hope he feels that way eventually!

Kim, you made us LOL.

Let's hope not, Linda! Janie, I guess that's true. Just a bit too good to be true. Unfortunately, the prices don't reflect their value.

Brenda, I guess we created the Perfect Storm. Blue Willow is in our top three, which makes it sound like we eat out all the time. Is having three favorite restaurants enough reason to settle down and get a job...? NO.

Thanks, Suzanne! It was very cool to meet them. Annie and I agreed that they are just as we imagined them to be. I'm suffering a crisis of confidence about Franklin being 'happy,' although when I compare us to starving to death in the desert, we look pretty enticing.

Cheryl, any chance your boondocking situation could be AT the Holiday Inn, in their lot? A little stealthing? Otherwise, I have mailed you ideas.

Thank you, Sue! I love the fluffies, too. I'm glad Franklin is working out, too. He's picking up on cues very well, thanks to Nina's advice. Now if we could get him to come when we call him! That's a biggie.

Thanks, Sharon! I pretty much love all Arizona skies. Such a difference from the Northeast.

Alli, I think he's not sure of his new pack, but I hope we can gradually win his trust. Scooby Snacks help!

Cyndi and Stumpy said...

Read about Franklin the other day and am so glad to hear he's being a good boy! REALLY glad he found you guys!

I'm headed to Tucson in a few days. Hopefully I can find youze guyz

Donna K said...

We met Nina and Paul (and Polly) here in Eugene last year - great folks. Glad she was able to share some dog training tips with you. Franklin will be ship-shape in no time.

Allison said...

I am so jealous, that's sort of like lunch with the Rolling Stones.

JO said...

I love your pictures. The graded one is really tops. I saw a really nice canon on sale for what I paid for mine and of course its so upgraded. I better be a good girl.

So happy Franklin is working out. Such a sweet face.

Sherry said...

What Allison said! Did I miss how Juan got the name Franklin Jackson? Of course you can use any photo for any non nepharious purpose you wish. Glad to hear from you again. I thought you'd lost my link.

Tell Cuzin Annie she is looking MI-T Fine these days. That Vegan eating is definitely agreeing with you both.

Spotted Dog Ranch: said...

Very cool pup and he's very lucky ducky.

Hey, I decided to quit blogging, so you may want to take me off your blogroll. :)

Anonymous said...

You gals are SO efficient!! Here I was just barely thinking about blogging and you've already posted pics and the lot. Lovely to meet you this week & can't wait to see the lovely doggie!

Rick Doyle said...

You're so far out in the boonies, I'm surprised your camera even works. Glad it does though - great pictures of some real property for sale opportunities!

SwankieWheels said...

Wonderful wonderful... love your horizons. Franklin... check his hearing. And reward him with treats for coming when called, but after he begins doing it pretty well, don't give a treat each time. Then maybe every third time. Eventually, he'll just come for the love of it. I love that you'all sound and look so happy.

judilyn said...

The Annie/Franklin portrait is priceless. The love in his eyes is so piercing. That boy is IN LOVE! ;->

As for the sn*w . . . Looks like it is a wet year. Here in Sierra Vista (elv.4623), we've had it a couple of times this winter, but I can see that it is not staying on the mountains as long as it has other years. Two winters ago, it got down to ZERO two nights in a row, but not much, if any, snow that I recall. Our Southern Belle magnolia tree has never forgiven us, and reminds us with brown blossoms in the spring still.

John and Pam Wright said...

Beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing:)

So glad you got to meet Nina and Paul. They are definitely delightful people.

Love the picture with Franklin. What a loving home he has found! Lucky dog!

The Good Luck Duck said...

Pam, we like them, too. Nina helped us understand what kinds of baggage Franklin might be carrying, so I don't take it so personally that he doesn't want to come to me. :D

Judie, I do think he is becoming pretty fond of us. Yay! It's mutual. A magnolia tree would have to become pretty indignant, I would say, over temps like that. Is it the huge kind with enormous fragrant flowers?

Charlene, thanks for the hearing idea. We'll gradually substitute praise and scritches for rewards.

You made us laugh, Rick! Yep, you can't rely on good camera signal out here.

Nina, Franklin enjoyed meeting you - I could tell! Plus us, and all. :o)

Chinle, it's our loss, but I know you want to accomplish other projects. If you decide to blog again, I hope you'll let us know.

Sherry and Kim, how about Juan Francisco? It flows.

I lost everyone's link! People have been doing stuff and writing about it, and I'm out of the loop. I guess I've been reading dog advice, maybe? I have named most of our animals because I come up with something I like first. This time I let Annie take her time and come up with the name.

Thanks, Jo. My problem is choosing a camera small enough to carry on a belt loop. I hate to have them around my neck. I know I sacrifice features for that convenience, but it's a price I pay.

You're right, Allison! They're blogging superstars! And, they've got the moves like Jagger.

Donna, Nina speaks highly of you and Russ. And Oregon.

Cyndi, write us and let's get together! Whotookmybucket at gmail point com.

RV AJ said...

Beautiful Photos! That piece of property looks like its in the middle of a million acres all by itself. Incredible.

The Good Luck Duck said...

Thanks, AJ. You're right - that property is pretty remote. And, you wouldn't have a lot of traffic shattering the quiet.

Gaelyn said...

You two never cease to amaze me. So which plot of land did you buy for the growing menagerie?

The Good Luck Duck said...

Haha, Gaelyn! We were tempted by one, but no purchase.

Kris said...

so glad I found your blog, guess I'm gonna have to follow along. Great pics. I have 12 - 24 months til I'm out there also and cannot wait. Kris

michael ultra said...

Great pictures, as usual!

The Good Luck Duck said...

Thanks, Michael! And, we're SO glad you're on the road; we all agonized with you all those many months of waiting.

Me, too, Kris! Blogs were my lifeline while we were getting ready to go. It took us about two years of prep, too, and I thought we would NEVER get going. Are you blogging about your process?

Kris said...

No blog yet but I am considering it as we get closer. Right now we are working on what I call phase one, beginning downsizing to get house on the market in May. For now we will continue to be just weekender's in our travel trailer while working at/waiting for everything to fall in place for fulltiming. Seems overwhelming sometimes but the blogs remind me of how much we have to look forward to once we get out there.

The Good Luck Duck said...

If you think you would enjoy blogging, it's definitely worth it to start before you start. Lots of people dream about doing this, but don't know how to get from wanting it to doing it. I think the pre-RVing process is important. FWIW, I'd also talk about how you're feeling as you go along.

Kris said...

Talked to my web designer (nephew) about adding a blog to my business site and he is working on it. Right now I sell on Etsy (harper creek creations) but just maybe I'll work on the blog idea, it's growing on me. As far as how I'm feeling....I was mentally ready to go yesterday! My mindset is to finish strong so lets get at it...I need an adventure.

The Good Luck Duck said...

Oh, I like those sleeves! Very cute, and a good idea.