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Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Las Vegas & Lake Havasu

From Southern Utah we made our way down to Las Vegas.  It is usually a very pretty drive through the canyons of Northern Arizona and down into Nevada and today was no exception.  However, we followed a thunderstorm down most of the way with lots of rain and fog until we suddenly burst out of it and were greeted with this rainbow … lovely!

Beautiful Rainbow after a Violent Storm

Our trip to Vegas was one of convenience this time.  Kim needed to fly out to Asia (East Timor) to provide professional development for an international school’s teachers using his new book Project Based Learning – How to Take the Road Less Traveled (more on the trip later).  It is a lot easier to go out of Las Vegas than Los Angeles and the location of the Thousand Trails – Las Vegas Park made things very convenient. 

For those of you unfamiliar with the Las Vegas TT Park it is located on Boulder Highway about two blocks from the Boulder Station Casino.  It provides nice security, 50 amp at few selected sites (we were lucky enough to get one of those), great free Internet, and excellent satellite TV reception.  It has a nice pool and club house and an adequate little store.  The spaces are a bit tight and it does not offer a plethora of activities (Vegas has plenty without the park offering more).  It is not a “campground,” in the traditional sense … or in any sense, really, nor is it particularly “family friendly” … but then neither is Vegas.  It provides a really nice location for adults to enjoy the many activities that Vegas is famous for, but is definitely not a “preserve.”  All in all, Lynda and I really enjoy this park, but it may not be everyone’s cup of tea … one has to take it for what it IS … not for what it isn’t.  Oh, and by the way, they deliver the paper to VIP members!  Therefore, we give it a really strong 9 on the Moore 10 point scale (taking off only because of the limited 50 amp sites).  We always enjoy our stay here and come back when we are in the neighborhood.

As I mentioned, I left Lynda to mind the coach (she did a quilting project) and took off to East Timor.  Our oldest, Dr. Jason Moore, is the headmaster of the international school in Dili, East Timor, and co-authored our new book along with two really great teachers (Kelli Schiller and Jeff Proctor).  The book is available on Amazon and you can find it by searching for the title (above) or me (K. Patrick Moore, Ph.D.).  I mention it here because of the number of home school parents who follow our blog.  Dili, the capital of East Timor has two paved roads, much dirt, and rampant poverty.  The international community has targeted the country for aid … which is both a blessing and a curse.  A blessing, because they really need the help … and a curse because the Timorese are not learning to do things for themselves.  The school serves mostly ex-pats from English speaking countries, but also has a variety of other foreign students and about 10% Timorese which they scholarship.  Here are a couple of pictures of the landscapes.

Kim on the Beach in East Timor

Timor is a Beautiful Country

Kim working with teachers in East Timor

The teachers work on one of their projects ... Greek play production

Ah the Tragedy of it all!!!

A very innovative costume for the "Furies"

In addition, it was our granddaughter’s third birthday.  Her parents threw a party for a dozen three year olds at the compound’s pool (Ex-pats all live in walled compounds).  Here are a few pictures of her (she is a delight) and her older brother (also a lot of fun) … Sorry … as a grandparent, I just can’t help myself.

Brynn on a new school Trike

Chocolate Cake ... Yumm

Brayden enjoying cake too.

A flock of three year-olds in the pool

Meanwhile, back in Vegas, Lynda took advantage of my absence to work on a quilt project for her mother.  She says she had every available space covered with quilting stuff.  The quilt is a paper piece beauty (a lap sized quilt) with each square having 96 separate pieces.

Lynda's quilt ... the picture went all fuzzy ... It is really extraordinary!

Upon my return, our oldest granddaughter (Nina) and her husband (Brian) came to visit us from Nebraska.  They stayed at the Boulder Station and were given a beautiful room with a great view on the top floor.  We had a great time with them and went to see a few things we otherwise might have missed.  The first place was the international pinball museum.  The museum is free and has rows upon rows of vintage pinball machines that can be played for a quarter or two.  We spent a total of $5.00 for the four of us and had a great time!  Here are few pictures.

Nina (Granddaughter) and Brian enjoy pinball

Playing a quarter game.

One of many rows at the museum.

We took a trip downtown to watch the people (a wonderful place for the odd, extraordinary, and weird).  Brian rode the new zip line ($15.00) and had a great trip.

The beginning of the zip line

The end of the zip line ... waiting to be unhooked

Also ventured down to The Strip where we visited the botanical gardens at the Bellagio, Paris, and the other casinos in the immediate area, before wearing ourselves out and returning to the Boulder Station for a few penny slots (this time we enjoyed a new one called Invasion from the Planet Moola where cows invade earth bringing cash --- both Nina and Lynda won on this penny machine).

Atrium at the Bellagio

Botanical Gardens at the Bellagio

Kim and Lynda enjoy the gardens

You can find it all in Las Vegas!!
From Vegas it is a short trip to Lake Havasu City.  Since we are on our way to California for annual medical exams, etc. this was a short stop of only four days.  We stayed at Colorado River Adventure – Lake Havasu RV Resort using our Coast-2-Coast membership.  The park is split across London Bridge Road and sits a few miles north of town.  It is easy to get in and out of and we had a nice back-in site.  Unfortunately, it was rather warm and the park only offers 30 amp (unless you purchase a long-term site).  It does have two pools and two club houses (seems they purchased another park across the road some time ago).  Non-members (like us) are placed on the west side of the road, but the sites are just as nice as the members’ section on the east side of the road.  One of the really nice things about Colorado River Adventure parks is the food.  They serve breakfast (eggs, biscuits and gravy, sausage) for $4.00 and a nice dinner for $5.00 (taco salad) or $6.00 (choice of liver and onions or chicken).  The menu changes and prices may vary but the quality and quantities are really good and the price is excellent.  Our Verizon Mifi worked here as did our Direct TV (satellite).  The 30 amp. and isolation of non-members causes us give this park a 7 out of 10 on our Moore Scale, but we would visit again ...  for the food.

We met some really nice people at dinner (Steve and Kat) and had a great time with them, sharing meals and cocktails.  They invited us to the Desert Bar outside of Parker.  Unfortunately, I came down with some stomach ailment so Lynda went with them while I slept.  The Desert Bar is run by solar power and is a unique place.  There are no advertisements for the place off of the main highway, but locals know where to turn off onto a dirt road for the trip into the desert for a visit.  It is a 90-minute drive from Lake Havasu (much shorter from Parker) each way.  Lynda had a nice time and took a few pictures.

A church facade at the Desert Bar

For some reason the owners really hate cheese!!

Steve and Kat at the Desert Bar

Lynda poses by the Desert Bar at the Desert Bar

Until next time – Keep doing what you love!