Before I startHave you ever lost your whole post just before you post it? That is irritating. You write it, put your thoughts and mind into it, then read it again, fix here, tweak there, rearrange the pictures, and when you are ready to post – puff ! gone!! the writer closes itself and the post vanishes! All over again! So this is the second time around… hopefully last. Ugrrrr.
OK, now I can Tuesday, February 22nd, 2011 – Yesterday was a work day. Pretty much it. I think that unless there is something worth mentioning, I will save you from reading about those days. I am not so good at telling stories when there is not much to tell. What can I say? Woke up in the morning. 9:43am. Brushed my teeth. All of them. Yes including the one on the upper left. Washed my face. dried it too. Then ate a Yoplait Yogurt – strawberry flavor. Doesn’t sound too exciting to me. so I will save you from that. Let’s just say – yesterday was a work day.
So now – the more exciting stuff. Today. After a light breakfast Patti found all the packed away hiking gear. Time to take it out, seems like we are using it more often lately! Got my vest and the pouches. Filled some water and Granola bars and were all ready to go.
City of Rocks is a park not so far from here – about 30 miles south on hwy 180. When we got closer to the park, the sight was very unique. In the middle of endless yellow flat meadows there are some patches of rocks growing out of the ground, as if they were lost in space and time.
We parked the truck, and started exploring around. The main area of the park is in and around the rocks. The different shapes of the rocks, the light and shade, combined with yellow sand, blue skies and green trees creates a majestic blend of shapes and colors that are just waiting to be captures. And so we did. We took many photos in this park, couldn’t help it.
One thing unique about this park is that you can camp almost anywhere around. The sites are spread throughout the park and provide a perfect camping spot with privacy, and beauty all around you. Most sites are dry, but some will have electricity and/or water. They even have showers for the campground. I think it is unique to camp in the middle of the park – and not too expensive. The phone reception though is not the best although we did get some emails and Skype messages while hiking. At least we had a peace of mind that if there is any emergency we are accessible. Thankfully – no urgent calls today.
After we looked around and among the rocks, we decided to take the outside trail – along the park perimeter. This is a very peaceful easy walking trail, about 2.5 miles long that provides excellent view points on the rocks from outside. It just emphasizes the uniqueness of this park and puts it in perfect perspective with the landscape around. The trail ended close to the starting point, in a desert botanic gardens. Nothing was blooming at this time of the year, but I am sure it us magnificent at spring time.
We have so many pictures and it is tough to choose. So this is a small sample of them. View it from the start and join us along to our city tour:
Rethink Possible? Impossible!Back to a favorite subject – the cellphone companies. This time it is AT&T.
It all started with an SMS message that Patti got, telling her that she exceeded the 100MB Data roaming quota. After paying outrageous amount to Verizon on roaming data, I called AT&T immediately to sort it out.
I will try to make a long story short:
In the US, AT&T coverage is 97% (so they claim). The 3% that are not covered are moving all the time. Moving with me that is. Just happened to be exactly where I am at.
Turns out, that according to the ‘Terms and Conditions’, if you are in an area that is outside of AT&T coverage – you are limited to 100MB of roaming data. That is fine. Here is the trick though – if you use over 100MB of roaming data in two consecutive billing cycles – you will be permanently blocked from all roaming data usage. This is irreversible. So when I found that out, the conversation with the “External Network Specialist” went something like that:
– So if I am not eligible to use over 100MB of roaming, please stop the service when I reach this limit, but don’t block the roaming altogether for good.
– That is impossible, sir
– Then instead of sending me a message after I exceeded the quota, please send me a warning when I used, say, 70% of the quota, so I can still do something about it.
– That is impossible, sir
– Is it AT&T??
– Then rethink Possible!!
How am I supposed to know how much of roaming data I used?
– You can call anytime sir.
– well, we both know that 100MB could be consumed in less then 30 minutes. so am I suppose to call every 20 minutes?
– That’s what the terms and condition says. You are still under your 30 day trial, you can return the phone if you want.
– No, I don’t want to return the phone, but I want to have practical solution to avoid permanent irreversible blocking from roaming in the 3% of the US that you don’t cover, and happen to follow me around. What you are telling me is that if I am out of your coverage area, I should turn my phone off. Smart phones are designed to consume data. Those devices are more than just phones and have many different usages, so even just turning the phone on in a roaming area can cause me to lose my roaming ability forever.
She didn’t have answer for that. Just another irritating fact they don’t tell you, Don’t you love those cellular providers?
Enough crying poor babyOk, ok, enough. Don’t worry, I didn’t lose sleep over it. It is just irritating and I wanted to share it with you, just in case you didn’t know that.
Anyways – we came back home and Patti didn’t feel like cooking tonight, so we went out to eat some local food. Good authentic Mexican food at Jalisco Café. They have great green Chili. If you like south western food, go there and tell them I sent you. They will look at you in a strange look like “Who???” but you can still tell them :)
Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011 – Didn’t have energy yesterday to write read or do anything (as Donna said in her FB Wall). Came back form the restaurant and fell asleep. So today I arranged all the photos and wrote this post and wrote this post. (It is not a mistake – I wrote it twice).
Tomorrow we are leaving this campground, Rose Valley Ranch, so just few words about it. We really enjoyed it here. First – it is definitely not a parking-lot style. Ample space, and privacy. Second – the aesthetics around – you see they care. Old time ornaments around the campground, the US flag is flying on a big lighter pole in the center, many service buildings throughout the campground – even a small gym! and last – they are very friendly people. we really enjoyed it here (Oh – I said that already, didn’t I). So if you are in the area and looking for a campground – this is the one! Tell them I sent you. No, just kidding…
So although I wrote this post twice, at least you get to read it once! but that is enough and appreciated! Hope you like it, and thanks for following along.