big rig looking for a tent experience. After
years of boondocking we found a seasonal property high up near Benson,
AZ. Life moves on and so are we.
Ron and Terry's
have stayed put so far at our winter house and glad we did. Just yesterday
South Dakota had a foot of new snow.
many times at the first warm day in Arizona the snowbird crowd packs up
and head out. Only to regret it later.
know it's not all that warm down here for most of the winter. Sure, much
better than what folks put up further north.
let me tell you right now is the best time to be in Arizona. The
doors are open and the weather is perfect day after day,
after week. No need for heat or AC. Just what the doctor ordered. Sure
it gets hot in the summer but not yet, and it helps that we are high up
at 4 K feet. This year we are staying longer as we have moved Dr. appointments
to down here and Terry is flying back to Iowa in late May to visit his
parentrs. Then in June we will head to South Dakota to get my new drivers
lic. and be on our way for summer travels.
for right now why not enjoy the weather right here. 80 - 90°
had our blow up hot tub in the garage not being used and thought why not
get it out and put it on the deck. So we did. Filled it with water, added
the chemicals, and turned on the heater. It took overnight to come up to
temperature of 103. Hang the power bill, me thinks. Once it's up to temp
should stay there. So later during happy hour will get in for a soak. Later
on after dark my do one with a little less on. It's not like we have any
neighbors close by that could cop a look. It is state land to the east
and will never be built on.
got this blow up hot tub (online from Walmart.. w/free shipping... who
would thunk) one winter when we were dry camping in Quartzsite, AZ in the
BLM for six months. It was quite the attraction out in the desert. We heated
it with a portable propane water heater and used a spare RV water 12v pump
to circulate water from the hot tub through the heater. Remember we were
off the grid with no power except our solar panels and a backup generator.
Now we found a new home for the little hot tub. And can now use the built
in heater... what's not to like.
Saturday Jan 2011 was a gem of a day in Q... The vendors were happy as
people were out and about and the weather was just perfect.
knew we had to fire up the hot tub. As it was heating we started a fire.
Later after dark (for a reason) we hopped into our 106° hot tub for
another OMG how great is this... again.
We had so much fun dry camping
for so many years in the BLM in the winter. But looking back it was great
but having a sticks and bricks winter house is now where we are at in our
lives. We can still go and boondock in western AZ in January but also knowing
we have a place to come back to whenever we want.
We heated the tub with the
propane heater on the right side of the pic. And a 12 V RV water pump to
recycle the water from the tub through the heater. You would not believe
the people who would stop by to check this out. Later we saw a vendor selling
these in the big RV show.
A great outdoor patio
in the desert... Green outdoor carpet is a must to get above the desert
dirt. Remember we were staying in the BLM for about six months in the winter
back then, so it was natural to set up a homey site. Just think... you
go camping and have a great site and then, you get to stay, not just for
the holiday weekend... but for months.
And at a cost of $180 for
six months. (you get water and a dump station at a central location) Now
you know why this BLM area gets several hundred thousand RVs during the
April 8 Planning our
summer travels.... And looking forward.
snowbirds are scattering and heading out for the summer, so time for us
to plan also.
start off with Terry is going to fly back to Cedar Rapids, IA for a week
in May. His mother's 87th birthday will be during that week. She
along with his dad, who will be 87 in July are both doing great. Spending
time with your parents whenever you can as they age is so precious.
Mine are both gone and are missed so very much. So Terry being able to
visit is so important while he can. I would give anything to have had more
time with mine, but that was not to be, so do it while you still can if
that is possible.
have decided it would be easier and cheaper to have him fly than for us
to haul the 5er back there. We had been going to IA as our first stop on
our summr travels for many years, but not this time.
don't have to see our old doctors back there as we have established relationships
with new ones down here in AZ.
works out so much better to get our medical care done down here in the
winter months than to rush back to Iowa and stay for a couple of weeks.
Then if something comes up medical wise, we are at a location for a longer
time to deal with it.
for medical issues... the latest is I had another appointment with my cariodiest
last week and he put me on a different med for my A-Fib. I was taking
one med three times a day to controll the A-Fib and it worked BUT I would
get a bad taste in my mounth and was short of breath on it. The new one
is twice a day and no side effects. Will go back to see him in a
few weeks. So for now ablation is out of the pciture and not needed.
Getting my other blood numbers back in control after the hospital stays
also. Remember that antibiotic that tore havoc with my body? So things
are looking up and can concentrate on summer plans... That's after my every
5 year colonoscopy which is scheduled in a couple of weeks. My dad died
from colon cancer so this is important to have done.
for heading north we will most likely head up the front range of Colorado
and up to western South Dakota as I need to get my drivers lic renewed
in July in the Hot Springs office which is open on Fridays. I know
they passed a law so you can renew online starting in July, BUT I hadn't
gone through the federally compliant driver license enhanced license
procedure yet and you can not do that online. I called to verify. After
that one time event is done, then online renewal should work.
that, it's let go the rains and off we are for parts unknown in Montana
and Idaho. Or other states... who knows. Will just have to see what
fancy strikes us as there is a lot to explore in the great northwest. Still
lots of back roads that need exploring yet out there. Like my header states...
big rig looking for a tent experience.
and Stanley Idaho...
dudes and dudettes...
Mar. 16 Wow... how time
flies when you're not having fun.
This is a learning
post about "life as we know it" and the world of medicine.
see I am still dealing with health issues.
get caught up... Have been to two cardiologists... Had a Heart Flutter
ablation procedure done in Tucson since flutter came back after electrial
shock was done in a ICU in Parker, AZ. Now still working to get my heart
A-Fibs under control. Blood surgar is coming down after being in the 200-300
range through all this. Was 95 this morning, back to where it had been
. And need Nephrology advice as my kindeys are taking a beating with
all these meds and hospital stays.
A-Fib events are less but still having them.
a visit with my cardiologist... we wanted him to look at the spreedsheet
I did on my low blood pressures for the next day after my last A-Fib
event after taking the just when needed meds I take to get me back in sync.
He was more concerned about the low systolic (upper number) and not
so much the diastolic number. I had a couple of systolic numbers
in the 60 range. So he said to stop taking my Benazepril Tabs and Metoprolol
Tabs pills. That should rainse my pressure. These things take
time to see the results.
talked again to think about doing a Cathether Ablation for A-Fib http://www.stopafib.org/catheter.cfm This
is much more extensive than what I had done for A flutter and would not
be done by him but another Dr. in his office.
regular cariodolist is what they call a plumber (puts is stints and such)
and the other one is callled a electration (does ablations). Such a world
we live in...
procedure can last up to and over 8 hours with me in the cath lab and may
have only a 70% success rate and may be needed to be done again down the
raod. But my A-Fib will only get worse as I get older. So now may
be the time to do it with a strong heart and at my age. The
procedure has been refind in the last few years and I feel good about the
Dr. in Tucson who would do it.
did the flutter procedure.
want to do it before we leave for the summer (need to have follow ups with
this to see how it worked) and right now my retiree Union is in talks with
CenturyLink for a new contract and my retiree secondary health Ins after
Medicare with them may change. Talks have been going on for six months
bottom line we have found good Drs. down here and feel good about their
skills. The cardiologist from the primary hearth center in Tucson (Pima
Heart) comes to Benson once a week and the local med clinic which we are
moving all our local Dr appointments to is also highly regarded. We have
bonded with both and they are getting to know our heath issues are are
working with are needs...We are moving all our DRs. PCPs from IA to here
as were are here for 5 months instead of a couple of weeks when in IA
when on our summer travels. If we need follow ups we are not in a campground
in IA. If done in the winter here we can go to our vacation house and recover
if needed instead of a campground in IA in the summer.
A big deal is to move all our prescriptions for refills from Drs. in Iowa
to down here. National electronic heath records can not come too
at the bill at mymedicare.gov online for the TMC hospital in Tucson for
my Flutter Ablation.
you sitting down $37,700 and another $15,00 for my stay in the Parker hospital.
Let alone Dr. bills yet to come in. Now that is not the end cost but think
about how they charge and get paid much less when all is done. Not much
has shown up in my Secondary Ins claims yet.
that vist my A-Fibs have came back with a vengeance. I thought they
would hit me like once a month like in the past but No... It went
to every few days, next every other day, and then every night.
to make a rush appointment with the electrical cardiologist. But couldn't
get in till the next Tuesday morning early.
here at 6:20 AM got up at 6 AM) and made it at 7:20 AM way ahead
of the 8 AM appointment. Had no traffic to speak of going thruogh
south to north Tucson.
had a spreadsheet on all my BP readings and the date and time I went into
A-fib and when I returned to sync since late January in Quartzsite. Like
I said the last few days it was every night about 1 AM but last night it
was 7:30 PM while watching TV. Strange so that meant it was not caused
by low oxygen levels while asleep, (sleep apnea) which is good news.
I had packed a bag thinking I would be going back to the hospital for another
the flutter went from the Dr. office straight to the hospital.
he just changed my meds (stopped ones I was taking only as needed) when
I go into A-Fib.
on one once a day and one three times a day to stop me form going out of
sync at all. I said what do I do if taking these and I still go
into A-Fib... he sez just wait it out. (Like it will stop on its
own?) So I started the new med scheme. He also put me back
on one of my blood pressure meds.
is better than the high powered drugs I was taking only when I want out
of sync. That was fine when I only need them once a month but everyday
was too much drug. The drugs were almost worse than A-Fib.
to go back in a three weeks to report how things are going. I think he
is being cautious trying to deal with this with meds only. If it
works (I can deal with that and be happy as I like the taking a med everyday
instead of massive meds AFTER going out ot sync). If the side efects are
good. The last one when taken lately everyday (because when needed)
insted of once a month before caused very dry mouth, sleep problems, and
severe constipation. (Like you wanted to know that).
the way through all this I have lost about 20 pounds.
him if my sudden problems in late Jan. could have been caused my the high
powered Antibiotic they put me on at the Quartzsite clinic. It was Avalox
and after 6 days on it is when I went into Heart Flutter (meds didn't help)
and BG >300 and kidney function of 4.1 and rushed to the ER. Of course
he said he didn't think the Avalox was the cause.
I see the FDA put out a warning on another Antibiotic that can cause what
happend to me. They also said a problem with the same kind I took
a can also cause heart rhythm problems. Do you know of a good ambulance
chaser lawyer? I just hope I can get my heart sync, blood suger levels,
and kidney function back in control. From what I read this may take
I went into A-Fib the first night after the last Dr. visit and stayed
in it for 24 hours and then came out of it. Thought the new meds
must have worked at last. But since... I am stil going out
of sync each morning just before getting up. Take my scheduled meds and
a couple of hours back in sync. Will contine and see if things get better
as the events ae not nearly as bad as before.
got home and I talked Terry into washing the truck as it was still mud
stained from the dirt road after all the snow and rain lately. With the
colder than normal the heating bill has been not nice. About time for no
electric heat or need for the air conditioner for awhile That's where we
make up for the winter usage with no usage in the good weather untill we
leve for the summer when it gets hot again. Not to worry we do not leave
the A/C on when we leave for the season. It hit 90 yesterday and right
now is 85.
It is sooooo nice to sit
in the living room with the patio door open to the 12X24 ft deck.
I tell you while we were in Quartzsite during the month of January Terry
said he turned the heat setting down at Benson house to 54 (left it on
so pipes don't freeze) but when we got back it was set at 65. OUCH.
Now stop laughing..... It's so much fun opening the emails from the electric
company with the current charges. Oh well it's only money... and we are
not hurting so even heath care bills will not be a problem. That's peace
of mind not having to worry, like so many other people who don't have affordable
now I'm counting the days till the follow up appointment. Hope
the new med scheme kicks in better as time goes on and my heart rhythm
not I will be asking if the Cath Lab Ablation procedure is right for me. Time
it's time to move out to the patio (this time of day it is shaded) as it
is on the east side of the house.
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