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Sonora Desert Solstice

USA | Wednesday, 22 December 2021 | Views [59]

Solstice Sunrise, Gold Canyon

Solstice Sunrise, Gold Canyon

NIGHTS IN THE SAHARA CAN GET COLD but it hardly prepared us for the weather in Omaha. Even our arrival from Atlanta was in doubt—wind gusts topping 100 mph had been reported all day, tearing off roofs and rolling semi-trucks on the interstate. The winds abated overnight but the temperature plunged; down to 28° Thursday with a high of 23° on Saturday.

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                   Hurricane force winds in Nebraska

Once again we got a suite at the Inn at Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha. It’s especially convenient to Connie’s brother Ron’s new long-term care facility and Bonnie’s home. Even before our first visit with Ron we made an appointment for our Moderna Covid booster, fully expecting a reaction, especially on top of 9-hours of jet-lag. It hit Connie first but John felt even worse and stayed on base while Connie visited Ron on Saturday.

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                      O say can you see...through the ice?

Sunday was a perfect day for flying, if you believe in such things; cold, crystal clear and calm. Southwest Airlines packed us like sardines on the flight to Phoenix—Connie at the window, me in the middle and a whale of a sardine in the isle seat of the last row. But unlike on EgyptAir, the flight attendants strictly enforced mask wearing. Connie got some neat photos from 35,000 feet over New Mexico and Arizona while we tried in vain to figure where exactly we were.

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          The Southwest from Southwest Airlines at 35,000 feet

After collecting our bags we called Paul and he appeared like magic from the “Cell Phone Lot.”  Ain’t technology great? Those of you who follow these entries will remember we spent last Christmas at Paul’s in Gold Canyon. He’s John’s oldest friend both in age and friendship-years—since Kindergarten if you can believe it!—and we had visited him and Norrine here in Arizona several times before her passing. 

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                   It's a Jeep thing, Paul and his new chariot 

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          Baby steps: Off Road but not quite "off-roading"

Paul has always been a nice guy and he must have been especially nice this year, at least in his own mind. His Christmas present to himself is a brandy-new Jeep Wrangler Unlimited. We went along to pick it up and drive his old buggy home. And when we took it “off-road” yesterday he was no longer a 74-year old man but the same excited kid I knew oh-so-many years ago.

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              Winter Solstice Moonset

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                           Winter Solstice Sunrise

Speaking of so many years ago, we recorded another one biting the dust with photos of the Winter Solstice moonset and sunrise at the same time. Out with the Old, in with the New.

 

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