Saturday, December 31, 2011


How nice to hear the sunrise tweeting of our little feathered bird friends right outside the rig’s window every morning.  Mother Nature’s relaxing and soothing way of starting another fine day.
Managed to get ourselves a couple trips in today.  The Elfrida dump was open till noon so we hauled a couple barrels of garbage over with Jeanie & Ray’s pick up truck.  The day was still early so figured it was a good day to make a run to Sierra Vista.
Made a trip to Big Bend in Texas back in late December of 04.  Since 06 we have been spending our winters in New Mexico, Arizona and California.  In all that time Kelly has never had a Cowboy hat.  Well, today was the day.  I was in need of a new hat myself so we headed for Spur Western Wear in Sierra Vista.  Never knew there was so much to learn about hats.  Spent nearly half an hour trying them on but in the end they just didn’t have the size I needed and Kelly didn’t find the kind she wanted.  Lady said their Tombstone store had my size.
Kelly had a little browsing to do in Marshall’s so I fell asleep in the Jeep out in the parking lot.  I kinda like when that happens. 
Hadn’t had any breakfast so headed ourselves into an eating place near Pet Smart called, ‘My Big Fat Greek Restaurant.  I’m always leery of these kinds of places.  Lotta big strange words on the menu so I stuck with a good old tried and true hamburger.  Kelly got a small pizza.  Kelly likes those kinds of foods but I’m always suspicious of any eating place that doesn’t have gravy on the menu.  Lotta noise coming out of the overhead speakers but Kelly said that was Greek music. Whatever!! I think next time we’ll head back to the Texas Road House.  Lots of good old mashed potatoes and gravy for AL over there…..10-4.
Rolled out of Sierra Vista for Tombstone somewhere around 2 in search of the Spur Western Ware store.  First time Kelly & I rolled into Tombstone was nearly 5 years to the day in late December 06.  Been there a couple more times since then over the past few years but we were really surprised at the change we saw in Tombstone today.  Maybe because it was a Saturday during the holiday season.  Lots of people on the main street.  Lots of cowboys, horses, stagecoaches, and people dressed up in the old west style.  They had a real active main street going on.
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Made our way to SPUR WESTERN WEAR where a fella by the name of Dave was patient with us trying on hats.  Knew the kind I was looking for but hats for me are never easy to find.  I got a big head!!  No, nothing to do with Ego.  I just got a big head.  Not much in it but it’s still big.  Kinda like an empty air plane hanger.  Fortunately, after half a dozen tries we finally found a 7.5 hat that fit my balloon head.  Gracias.  My hat style is called a ‘Tombstone.’  And, how cool is that to buy a Tombstone hat right in the dusty little historic town of Tombstone Arizona itself.
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Kelly wasn’t so lucky.  She just couldn’t find a comfortable fit or style she liked.  Dave was good enough to direct us two doors down the boardwalk to RUSSELL'S ROADRUNNER.  Even a bigger selection of Cowboy hats in this store.  Kelly found a hat before I even made it inside.  I was outside running around cracking off pictures of all the interesting looking characters walking around.
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I failed to get the store proprietors name but everyone in Tombstone looks like they are related to the Earps or McLaurys.  A personable fellow with longer white hair, a sense of humor, a knowledge of hats and a western looking vest type jacket to go with it all.  Gotta love the attitude of the town folks and shop keepers for keeping Tombstone….Tombstone.
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Back out on the street we heard some hollerin and yellin coming from up the street.  Seems the Earp Brothers were mixin it up with some of the Clanton boys.  The street quickly cleared as the arguing, pushing, and shoving continued down the street toward the OK Corral.  Doc Holliday was looking as wasted as Wyatt was looking dapper.  The McLaurys and Clanton boys made it down to the OK corral at the bottom end of Allen Street.  With the Earp Brothers and Doc in hot pursuit the arguing continued.
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We knew there was going to be some serious gunfire soon because them boys sure was mad at each other.  Figured it would be a good time to high tail it out of town before we ended up with bullet holes in our new hats.  We did manage to snag an ice cream cone in our haste though.  Kudos to you Tombstone for keeping your little town and it’s legends alive:))  And, would you believe I never thought to take any pics of our new Cowboy hats today.  Stay tuned……….
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Arrived back at the Ranch just in time to get the chickens milked and the dogs fed.  Our sunny day temps could not have been better and how nice to slip out at night now for a look at the stars.

Before I get to the last paragraph let me just wish everyone all the best for the new year.  A big thank you to all readers, friends, commenters, and folks sending emails for hanging in with me for yet another year.  We’ve had a few ups and downs along the way folks but maybe we can smooth out some of those downs in the New Year………..10-4:))         
The Last Paragraph: A year’s review in one paragraph, hmmmm.  The disappointment in not being able to swing a deal on the Lazy W Ranch.  Our days at Joshua State Park and Lone Pine California, Nevada’s Valley of Fire and Arizona’s Canyon de Chelly.  The terrible loss of Max and Checkers in April and the longest boring and most depressing summer I’ve ever had.  Finding Pheebe was a high point in August and getting back on the road again in mid November brought me out of my slump.  Ending the year with some medical issues casts a shadow into 2012.  Summing up…..Worst of the year was losing Max and Checkers:((  Best of the years was finding and bringing home the Pheebs:))  And, there it was…….2011.
GROANER’S CORNER:((  A man walks into a bar and orders a shot then looks into his pocket. he does this over and over again. finally the bartender asks why he orders a shot and after drinking it he looks into his pocket.
The man responded "I have a picture of my wife in there and when she starts to look good…… I'll go home."  (By the way, women have been known to carry photos of their husbands in their purses for the same reason.)
-Tourists see the world, travelers  experience it.
- Home is where your pet is:))
The only thing better than right now  will someday be the memories of
right  now...AL.


  1. Happy New Year to you and Kelly and the 'bunch'!!..may 2012 bring you safe travels and good health and much happiness!!!
    Cheers to you both!!!

  2. From the looks of Boot Hill cemetery, the Earps and Doc Holliday didn't take much crapp outa the McLauries and the Clantons back in the day either. I had fun in Tombstone a couple of years ago, but I'm certain that I wouldn't have liked it one bit back in the 1880s.

    We need to see those new hats!!

  3. I can't wait to see pictures of you and Kelly in your new hats!

    I wish you the best for the new year.

  4. Best Wishes for 2012 to The Bayfield Bunch!

    Thanks for the entertainment and the photography lessons in 2011.

    Thanks from Sharon and Ron

  5. Great post! Love the pictures! I think I saw Rick Perry there next to Wyatt Earp?
    I like the hat Kelly got but didn't see yours?

  6. Great pictures of Tombstone, it's on the list of future Weeb Ranch stops,You guys have a terrific New Year and yes I agree, Pheebs should be and is the highlight of your year, A new best pal, what else could a man ask for.Be safe out there, my friend, Sam & Donna...

  7. Happy New Year to the Bayfield Bunch!
    Great photos, as usual.

  8. Don't ya just love a look back at the "Old West" through a gunfight?? I still love a good Western..Hey, I found a great Cowboy cookbook you might like ...mostly because of all the photos of real cowboys. The recipes are pretty good, too! I'll email Kelly with the name...Best wishes for the New Year and you health issues being resolved!!

  9. GREAT post and even better photos
    Wishing you a year that brings good friends,good health, good luck, good things & safe travels!
    Happy New Year

  10. Today's pictures made me feel like I was sauntering down the streets of Tombstone with you.

  11. Happy New Year, Al -- looking forward to seeing those new sun bonnets you have perched on your heads!

  12. Happy New Year to you and Kelly and the "Bunch" Al! We sure enjoyed our visit to Tombstone this year, fun place to be.

  13. Happy new Year to the both you hope 2012 is a good and healthy one for you!!! Looking forward to see some pictures of you new HAT's!!
    Great pictures again Al !!

  14. ...and you didn't stop by?


  15. We just love Tombstone ourselves, the atmosphere, clothing a vendors help keep the old west alive. Have a very Happy New year!

  16. Happy New Year to you and Kelly! One of my highlights is your Blog and those beautiful photo's that you take!! You really made Tombstone come alive!
    Sheila :)

  17. Some people hate Tombstone and call it a tourist trap. Whatever, we LOVE it. We saw the shootout show and the guy who played Doc Holiday was every bit as good as Val Kilmer. It's a fun place to visit.

    I think finding Pheebs was one of the best things I have ever read about. What a dog...

  18. That is such a cool place. Love those old stagecoaches. Photos are great! Am very happy you 2 got some new cowboy hats now ya look the part. Kelly looks fab in hers. It seems like many people felt 2011was a tough year for them so you are not alone. Stay positive, listen to your heart and have faith.


  19. Always love your photos of Tombstone, Al. Those were especially interesting this time. Sure did enjoy it there when we were there a few years back. Have a wonderful 2012, and take care of yourself. Tell Kelly we're glad she finally found a hat she liked.