Blessed to be called as godparents for another baptism

Two weekends ago, Kathryn and I were called to be godparents once again, this time for the baptism of a seven-week-old son of friends who live in Oro Valley, a town about ten miles north of Tucson. Kathryn is already godmother to the newly baptized’s older brother. Being called to godparenthood — my auto-correct seems … Continue reading Blessed to be called as godparents for another baptism

Surprisingly, a sunrise hike in Phoenix never gets old for me

It’s getting to be about that time of year again, where every weekend hike in Phoenix could be my last before October. On those hot Phoenix summer weekend mornings where the outside temperature is 90 degrees before I’ve finished brewing my coffee, I don’t hike. I either go to the gym or, more often, stay … Continue reading Surprisingly, a sunrise hike in Phoenix never gets old for me

Trump Derangement Syndrome is real and undeniable

Earlier this morning, a friend sent me a link to an article that’s simultaneously the funniest, dumbest, and most thought-provoking thing I’ve read this week. Then again, it’s only Wednesday. Apparently, a Finnish group called Melting Ice is trying to raise money for Project Trumpmore, which would “prove” — their word, not mine — the … Continue reading Trump Derangement Syndrome is real and undeniable

WordPress migration to Amazon EC2 complete

During the day Saturday, I spent a few more hours off-and-on continuing the migration of this self-hosted WordPress blog to Amazon EC2. By dinner time, I was able to throw the switch, so to speak, reassociating the af7kq.com domain name with its new name servers. Because of the way name servers cache lookups, it would … Continue reading WordPress migration to Amazon EC2 complete

Having another look at the Salisbury Beach boardwalk

Before heading back to Boston yesterday, we decided to take one last walk at Salisbury Beach. In particular, we hadn’t taken a good look at the boardwalk, a curiosity for me since it didn’t exist when I was a kid growing up in Salisbury. It’s hard to imagine if you look at it now, but … Continue reading Having another look at the Salisbury Beach boardwalk

Flight delay at Boston Logan

We’re still waiting at Boston Logan for our flight back to Phoenix. Our flight has been delayed twice, giving us a chance to get to know the bartender at the Legal Sea Foods next to our departure gate. Perhaps the third time is the charm, although I see no evidence the incoming flight has even … Continue reading Flight delay at Boston Logan

Eating our way through a busy first day in New England

Considering the only real sleep we got Friday night was on the flight from Phoenix to Boston, we stayed quite busy yesterday. After waiting what seemed like forever for our checked bags, we took the airport shuttle bus to the rental car center, which didn’t exist last time I rented a car at Boston Logan. … Continue reading Eating our way through a busy first day in New England

At Sky Harbor, waiting for our flight to Boston

It’s a relatively quiet Friday evening at Sky Harbor, so our check-in and transit through the security checkpoint were a breeze, leaving us ample time for a bite to eat before we board. We had an appropriate Good Friday meal of pancakes at Matt’s Big Breakfast, which happens to be on the same concourse as … Continue reading At Sky Harbor, waiting for our flight to Boston

Heading back east for a last-minute visit over Easter weekend

Kathryn and I will be traveling to New England this weekend to attend a memorial service for a loved one who recently passed away. If everything goes according to plan, we’ll arrive in Boston early Saturday morning on a red-eye from Phoenix, stay three nights at a hotel in Amesbury, Massachusetts, and depart on the … Continue reading Heading back east for a last-minute visit over Easter weekend

A long, beautiful weekend at Cholla Campground by Roosevelt Lake

Last weekend, Kathryn and I enjoyed a long, beautiful weekend at Cholla Campground, situated on the shore of Roosevelt Lake in the Tonto National Forest of Arizona. We hadn’t been there in over three years, and we couldn’t help but spend much of the weekend wondering why. Little has changed since our last stay at … Continue reading A long, beautiful weekend at Cholla Campground by Roosevelt Lake

Enjoying a quiet weekend of camping at Roosevelt Lake

Kathryn and I left this morning for a four-day weekend of camping at Roosevelt Lake, about a two-hour drive from Phoenix. After getting a relatively late start — 8:45 am being relatively late for us — and then making a stop for a second breakfast in a small town about ten miles from the lake, … Continue reading Enjoying a quiet weekend of camping at Roosevelt Lake

Last photos of the border wall at Calexico near Gran Plaza Outlets

During last month’s aborted trip to Mexicali for Chinese food, Kathryn, Dan, and I made a stop at the Gran Plaza Outlets in Calexico, California, for a bathroom break and, for Kathryn, a quick, successful bit of shopping. While we were there, we also took a number of photographs of the nearby border wall between … Continue reading Last photos of the border wall at Calexico near Gran Plaza Outlets

Taking a break for Café Bustelo at Gila Blend inside a casino

The play on words on this Café Bustelo sign — assuming it was intentional — might not be so obvious if you haven’t spent much time in Arizona. Gila Bend is a small town in Maricopa County, located near a bend in the Gila River, about an hour’s drive from Phoenix. However, it wasn’t the … Continue reading Taking a break for Café Bustelo at Gila Blend inside a casino

Camping with a fake but pretty propane fireplace

Before our last camping trip, Kathryn got on the interwebs and found us a nice, portable propane fireplace. We had looked into this idea before, but most of the fireplaces we found in the past would have taken up half the trunk. This one was a bit pricey, but it’s smaller than our cooler. Since … Continue reading Camping with a fake but pretty propane fireplace

Repent! Remember, man, that thou art dust

Valentine’s Day? Arizona Statehood Day? Any other year, that’s how we might refer to February 14. This year, however, February 14 is, first and foremost, Ash Wednesday. I like to get a jump on my Lenten repentance, so I arrived at Mater Misericordiae Mission in Phoenix at 6:05 this morning to get in line for … Continue reading Repent! Remember, man, that thou art dust

Just a random sunrise photo from Shaw Butte in Phoenix

Apropos of nothing, here’s a random photo taken during a sunrise hike at Shaw Butte in Phoenix last year. We’re looking north from near the summit, with the residential communities clustered around Thunderbird Road and Coral Gables Drive appearing closest below. Usually the low brush appears brown and the rocks appear grey, but with the … Continue reading Just a random sunrise photo from Shaw Butte in Phoenix

Hockey and Popeyes, recent news items out of Montpellier

Montpellier, France, is still one of my favorite places in the world, so I try to keep up with the local media there. I thought I’d share a couple recent news items that caught my attention today. First, our second favorite hockey team, the Montpellier Vipers, finished the regular season with an 8-0 home win … Continue reading Hockey and Popeyes, recent news items out of Montpellier

Sunrise over Dead Horse Ranch State Park, Cottonwood

The downside of crystal-clear blue skies is they produce some rather unspectacular sunrises and sunsets, mostly involving changing shades of blue. However, when we woke up on our last day of camping in Cottonwood, there were just enough clouds on the horizon to give the sunrise a little bit of color. The car in the … Continue reading Sunrise over Dead Horse Ranch State Park, Cottonwood

A perfect weekend with no television, camping in Cottonwood

Kathryn and I have been in Cottonwood, Arizona, since Friday afternoon, enjoying a rare three-day weekend of camping at Dead Horse Ranch State Park. It has been gorgeous weather for tent camping, with crystal-clear blue skies, an occasional light breeze, and high temperatures in the 70s. Yesterday morning we did a five-mile hike in the … Continue reading A perfect weekend with no television, camping in Cottonwood

Fortune Garden, Chinese restaurant in El Centro

Our lunch several Saturdays ago at Fortune Garden, a Chinese restaurant in El Centro, California, was something of a happy accident. Dan, Kathryn, and I left Yuma around 11 am with every intention of driving to Calexico, parking, and walking across the border to a Chinese restaurant a few hundred yards away in Mexicali. However, … Continue reading Fortune Garden, Chinese restaurant in El Centro