Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Just When I Think I'm All Together!!!

So .... here's a picture of what Cooper looks like at 5:30 in the morning when he's gotten me up at 3 am.  Sound asleep!!  That's how it started out yesterday.
It's time for me to use up all those Fry's grocery store receipt points and fuel up the rig (with big discounts) for the trip home.  Funny ...  I wasn't nervous at all this time, even though I haven't driven it for a couple of months.

I unhooked everything, raised all the blinds, removed all the flashing lights I keep underneath to deter the packrats and even removed the tennis balls from the windshield wipers.  As I sat in the driver's seat, I was feeling pretty smug.  I actually remembered EVERYTHING, including the inverter since I've already packed lots of frozen items!!

Here I go ... driving off in my big RV ... feeling really fine!!  But boy is it HOT!  I didn't bother with the air conditioner and generator, I just flipped on the dash air.  Well I tried anyway ... the little knob just went round and round.  There was no clicking and no turning on.  In fact, the knob fell off in my hand.  Luckily I could turn the stem with my fingers.  It blew hot air.  Oh well, I don't have far to go.

I was still feeling the smugness ... the "I did it" feeling ... but it didn't last long.

That's when I looked down.  CHECK ENGINE!!!  Oh good grief.  I've started this thing up and run the engine every other week and NEVER had this happen.  I saw nothing in the gauges to think something was up, so I just kept driving.

As I went down a short hill for a left turn, I heard it.        Honk     Honk Honk   HOONNNNNKKKK! The lady pulling up beside me was pointing frantically.  Now what???  Am I on fire???  Are the tires flat???  I hit the brakes and stopped in the middle of the road.  

I WOULD have hit the emergency flashers, but couldn't remember where they were at that second.  I jumped out, walked around the rig which was holding up oodles of traffic and found my big bay door wide open.  What the heck?

I slammed it a couple of times, thought it was latched and took off ... slowly.  Finally at the fuel station, I was feeling better about everything because I was getting fuel at a 50 cent per gallon discount.  Or not.  You have to have your little card to scan, which was still on the Jeep keyring back at the house.  No discount for YOU!!

As the pump filled the tank, I looked at the bay door.  It was calling my name.  I slipped a fingernail into the crack and pulled ever so slightly.  It popped wide open.  BIG SIGH!!  It's not latching at all. 

Once I paid FULL PRICE for the fuel, I pulled over and scrounged through my tool box for a couple of wrenches to try and fix the problem.  There were no wrenches to be found.

With one set of regular pliers, one needle nose pliers and seven attempts, I was finally able to get it to latch.  I think.  At least the fingernail trick did not produce any results.

When I started up the engine to leave, the CHECK ENGINE light went out.  Whew!!  Thank goodness for small favors.  Maybe this January at the RV rally I will invest in one of those tell all computer things that sits on your dash and tells you what the check engine light is saying.

With my ego totally deflated, I quietly made my way back home.  I backed in the long driveway, replaced all the flashing rope lights and tennis balls just in time to be met by the air conditioning repairman.  You see when I came in the house Monday afternoon, I smelled something really bad right at the air filter intake.  It hit me right between the eyes.  Just what I needed when I'm planning to leave.
It's a long story ... it's frustrating, maddening, and I think I got taken yet again.  I'll report on that tomorrow because right now, I need to do some ZEN get-over-it breathing and lower my blood pressure!!  

I'll be back on the road in the morning.

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

The Weird And The Wonderful

There are lots of fascinating things to see around the country but THIS is one of the most weird, yet wonderful ones I've taken in.  I caught wind of this in one of Nick Russell's blogs.  When he said he could walk around here for hours, he was right.

This is the Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures.  Who knew there even WAS such a thing.  Hidden in northwestern Tucson is this building full of miniature handmade creations.  Founded by Patricia and Walter Arnell, it was a way to showcase her vast collection of antique miniatures.  It opened in 2009.

I've seen a few dollhouses in my time, but believe me, you've never seen anything as intricate as these.  Since Halloween is coming soon, there was an entire room of cute scenes depicting everything you would expect Halloween to be.  You might want to click on the image to see it better.  All of these were taken through glass to keep little hands at bay, not to mention most of the people in the scenes are only 2-3 inches tall.
Here's the pharmacy where you can buy werewolf hair, eye of newt and all that good stuff.  The attention to detail is amazing.
As I walked around, I discovered there are hundreds of people who make these scenes as hobbyists.  You can too if you've a mind.  This is a picture frame with three witches made from cheesecloth and a few dried flowers.  
There is an entire room dedicated to Christmas, even underneath your feet!!!  It's a kids paradise.  
By the way, the same rules apply here as at the botanical gardens.  No climbing on the tree!!  You can look between the roots to find little mouse houses though.  It helps if you are only three feet tall for this attraction.  In fact, if you are short, this one's for you.  I found myself kneeling down on several occasions to see better.
Here's the Three Little Bears, with the broken chair below and the family discovering Goldilocks.  Almost every display has lights inside.  I've no idea how they work but they are so realistic it's crazy.
Many of the displays are simply houses with rooms full of furniture.  This Wine Cellar is actually built in a wine box.  
The Chocolate Shop was fascinating with lots of miniature cakes, pies and candy to behold.  
Towards the end you will find castles and amazing displays of furniture, chandeliers (all lit up) and even tapestries on the walls.  Tiny tables are set with real silver goblets and glasses, made by someone with small hands and lots of patience.  Teeny tiny pieces of art all on display.  I mean really, how do you make a candle the size of a toothpick?
Along one wall there are even mechanical displays.  Just push a button and it will begin to play music and move all about.  At $8 for seniors, it was worth it to view these amazing pieces of art that have taken hundreds of hours to make.  You can also stay out of the heat for a couple of hours.  

Interested in doing this yourself?  They have starter kits in the small gift shop and I imagine you can find ANYTHING miniature on the internet.  Although there was nothing going on this day, if you look them up first, you will find a list of daily presentations by the artists themselves on how to get started.  

Personally, I never thought of this as art until now.  It was pretty fascinating.

So I'm down to packing.  The Chance family has returned and I'm off kitty duty.  It's time to start concentrating on the Indio Rally Ice Cream Social.  Do I sound excited?  Yeah, well, I'm working on it!!!

Monday, September 17, 2018

I'm a Wallflower

I have been since I was a kid.  You could always find me sitting against the back wall at every 4-H and school dance I went to, which weren't many.  So you would think I'd be the first one to love flower gardens.

Not so much, although I do like photography in flower gardens.  That's why I decided to visit the Tucson Botanical Gardens.  It's not exactly easy to find.  I drove past the entrance twice before finally getting it right.  The entrance to the garden itself is not visibly marked, so just drive to the back of the parking lot and walk towards the building.
Take the white door to the right into the gift shop where you must pay for entry.  $13 each for seniors.  The very first thing I saw was this beautiful flowering cactus.  Wait ... what?  I walked closer.  It was a metal water fountain, so real looking it had me fooled.  
Everything is of course posted with name tags so I would know what it was I was killing should I plant some of these in MY back yard.  
Although I thought for sure they would all be blooming like crazy, I was wrong.  The blooming season is short in the desert and this is the only cactus bloom I could find.  Weird how there is one flower just at the tip.
As I pretended to be on a great jungle expedition looking for the elusive tiger to photograph, I ran into another beautiful fountain.  It's rather hard to see due to the dappled shade, which I was very thankful for.  
It was only 9:00 am and I was sweltering.  Just look at these happy campers!!  Interestingly enough, there were very few drip systems set up.  Several employees, or maybe volunteers, were watering everything by hand.
Maybe if I just sit under the shade of this tree and enjoy the morning, I will cool off a tad.  It's a magnificent setting to be sure.  There is a restaurant on the premises, but it was too early for lunch.
FINALLY ... a critter!!  In the butterfly garden there were hundreds of these beauties flying around.  Timing is everything.  I probably took thirty images of these guys before I got one with it's wings open.
There were two monarchs that weren't cooperating at all.  This is the best I could come up with because by now the flies were driving me crazy.  They are definitely sticky little guys.
This was originally the home of Bernice and Rutger Porter dating back to the 1920's, who operated a garden nursery here.  They even built their house out of adobe, which still stands today, being used for administration.

Around the back side of the house are more familiar roses, vines and trees showing off their finery.
With absolutely no one in sight, since they are all smart enough to stay home in the heat, I walked around this beautiful area by myself.  Another fountain made it feel cooler than it was.
At long last the wallflower jungle trekker spotted a critter.  A horned lizard ... and a BIG one probably 12 inches long.  Please, please stay still till I get a picture!!
There are garden rules ... do not climb the trees (??), smell the flowers but don't take any cuttings (this one is directed towards Miss Patty Chance and her nurse scissors) and pets or dogs are NOT allowed, nor is smoking or vaping.  

I was looking forward to the butterfly and orchid pavilion, but alas it is only open October to May.  Taking a picture of this sculpture will have to suffice.
You are usually directed to exit through the gift shop, but in this case, you ENTER through the gift shop.  Time to head back around and see if anything in there floats my boat.  Sure enough, standing forlornly outside the back door was this little table.  

It called my name.  The nice lady said "why yes, it's for sale - I'll even give you 25% off if you take it because it's terribly faded".  Okie dokie ... and I loaded it up in the Jeep.  Once home, I gave it a quick cleaning and a spray of sealant to bring all the life and color back.  It's perfect for coffee in the mornings.
In case you were wondering, yes you CAN get married here in the gardens.  You can also have your engagement pictures taken here, as did the couple who arrived just as I was leaving.  Be forewarned, it costs extra if you are using a "professional" camera.  I instantly stuffed mine in my backpack.  

I'm sure this wallflower would have spent much more time here if it weren't for the heat.  Stop by in the wintertime and bring a snack.  There are several areas in which to relax and enjoy the things that grow.

Sunday, September 16, 2018


You are getting sleeeeepy ...... verrrrrry sleeeeeeeepy!!!!  You will feed me chickennnnnnnn and pet me for hourrrrrrrrsssss.  Okay ... wake up!!
It's been an experience with these kitties at the Chance household.  Snoopy went missing again yesterday.  I spent about ten minutes crawling under beds and looking in cupboards before I remembered the attack position.  Can you find the kitty?
Look how high this is!!!  Figuring out she wasn't going to get in a surprise attack this time, she came down and made a beeline for the OTHER bathroom where she gets fed.  That's so the door can be kept closed to keep Missy out.  Missy thinks there is not enough cat food in the world for her!!
Only having access twice a day, Snoopy now eats all her food at one sitting before following me to the living room for some lap love.  This girl is the most affectionate cat I've ever known.  In case you were wondering why Missy isn't in the pictures, she is NOT a lap cat.  She might sit at my feet for a few minutes, then she's gone to stare out a window.
Snoopy literally spent an hour rubbing all over me, coaxing out pets and rubs from one end to the other.  Pffttt Tufffttt ... that's me spitting out kitty hair!!  It's one of the hazards of all this kitty love.
Once finally comfortable, she goes right to sleep .... and you are not allowed to move.  It's the rules!!  I'm sure my pups wonder where I am for two hours every afternoon, especially when I come home smelling like a cat house!!

Since I figured out the bat problem with the hummingbird feeder, the hummers have been going crazy.  It must be the time of year.  There are always at least six or seven flying back and forth making sure no one is allowed to drink before their turn.
I love capturing these guys in flight.  You can see the white tips of their tail feathers.
You can also see what it takes to make a perfect landing on the rim.  I could sit for hours and watch them.  Instead however, I need to get moving.  MY moving day is fast approaching as I head to a rally meeting in California.  The only reason I'm going is to ensure I get a golf car for the ENTIRE week.
It used to be that was not a problem.  Then someone of importance decided I only needed one for two days.  Sorry folks, but I'm not walking around the entire fairgrounds every day looking for the 15 captains I need to meet up with to discuss how much ice cream to deliver, let alone needing one to make the deliveries when the time comes.  

Since you have to turn in your "material request" early, here's what I said.


Radio:     None, I'm giving it up for a golf cart for 7 days.

Hats:       None, I'm giving them up for a golf cart for 7 days.

Chairs:    None, I'm giving them up for a golf cart for 7 days.

ETC, ETC ..........   Think they'll get the hint???

It's poker night, so I'm off to purchase salad supplies.  I love it when the neighborhood gets together!!  I think I'll try to get my friends at my other home to do this.  We will see if California neighbors are as nice as Arizona neighbors are!!

I also went to the Tucson Botanical Gardens ... not really my cup of tea, but I was rather surprised.  Pictures tomorrow.

Saturday, September 15, 2018

Solar ... By Hook or By Crook!!

I remember way back in the dinosaur era when we had to turn our lights off to keep the power bill down.  Leaving your bedroom light on was a federal offense, punishable by docking your 50 cent weekly allowance by 10 cents per incident.

We usually complied because that 50 cents could buy FIVE comic books at the corner liquor store.  Oh I remember it well ... spinning the rack around and around trying to decide whether to get Superman or Captain America.

Then along came someone who invented solar panels.  Sorry, there won't be any pretty pictures of this subject.

It all came about when my girlfriend in California called to say she got solar for her house.  Not really interested since I keep my bill really low, I asked her what DEAL she got.  She put no money down, had the panels installed for free, and still pays PG&E the same $200 a month she's been paying for the last ten years she has owned the house.  So how is that a deal?  Maybe if the cost of electricity doubles in the year 2030.

I think she got hooked into a crooked deal.  The solar company gets all the extra electricity which they sell to PG&E for a profit.  In 20 years, if she lives that long (she is 68), she will own the system and probably NOT have a bill for electricity.
There's another reason I didn't want solar on my California house.  It would cover the entire front roof of the south facing building, making it much less appealing from the street.  No, this is not my house.  I think this is in Wales or somewhere totally irrelevant.  
How about solar here in Arizona?  I mean really, the sun shines most every single day.  Mr. Chance hooked me up with his installer, proven to be honest and dependable.  I called him up and got a lesson in solar.

Here's the deal ... at least in Arizona.  I could buy a 5 watt system for $15,000 and get a $5,000 rebate from the federal government.  From the day of installation on, I would have no electric bill other than a $19 a month charge to stay in the system, which most likely would be wiped out by the extra electricity I generated every month that Tucson Electric Power would buy from me. 

Sounds like a plan.  Sign me up.  The nice gentleman called me back in an hour to explain the laws.   How much solar wattage you are ALLOWED to install is dependent on your average bill every month.  If my bill was $200 a month, I could get a 5 watt system.  YAY!!  

Not so fast there honey ... your bill has been averaging $45 a month, which means you only qualify for a 3 watt system.  That gets you nothing for your $10,000 investment.  You will never be able to produce enough electricity to sell extra to TEP with a 3 watt system.  

In fact, you probably won't even make enough electricity to cover your bill for the month!!  It's the law and there's no getting around it.  They will not let you install a 5 watt system (or bigger) just so you can make money off the local electric company.

I was sort of in a panic over getting the system installed, since Arizona (at the bidding of Tucson Electric Power) was set to pass a bill saying it no longer had to buy from the homeowner at a profitable rate, any extra power produced by private solar panels.  

If you already HAVE a system, you will be compensated at the high rate already established.  If you have a system installed AFTER the passage of this new bill, you will receive the same rate paid to the big power companies that provide electricity to TEP.  In other words, there is no longer an incentive to install solar. 

I'm glad he was at least honest enough to tell me the truth ... that any system I am allowed to install will not be big enough to cover my bill, making my break even point come at about age 95.  It would just be a waste of money.  How many contractors will tell you that?  

As for solar on the RV, the same goes for comparing the cost against the use I would get out of it.  Rarely would I be in an area where I would dry camp, unless it was Quartzsite for one week out of the year, in which case I just use my generator.  If I were full timing, it would be a different story since I have a household refrigerator.  Solar would then be my friend.

Alas, I shall remain in the dark ages, hoping my retirement check will cover the rising cost of electricity wherever I go.  

Friday, September 14, 2018

A Big Hole In The Ground

First off, I hope all my friends in Florida are safe and sound.  Hurricane Florence is HUGE and is going to be devastating to anyone who decided to remain behind in the Carolinas.  It's just crazy that five tropical storms are in that area all at the same time, one headed for Florida.  Just look at this thing!!!  And I get scared with just a few monsoon lightning storms!
A big hole in the ground ... that's what I would be looking for in THAT storm.  Around here, the big hole in the ground is under my house.  I'm pretty sure it would NOT be considered a safe place to be.  With all the spiders and scorpions I've found, there's no WAY I'm going down there.

The crew from Superior Mobile Home Repairs didn't blink an eye.  If I had their gear, I might actually think about it twice.  Covered from head to toe in coveralls with breathing equipment, headlamps and what looked like scuba goggles, down they went into the depths to check the braces underneath.
Amazingly, it was dry.  I was kind of worried about that since water underneath can devastate the footings holding up the middle of the house.  As with most companies, there was of course a sales pitch.  They took dozens of pictures of every place there was a hole in the vapor barrier.

There is a black plastic sort of material underneath keeping the insulation dry.  Over time, it gets torn open by plumbers and whoever else may have to do work down there.  Yes, it probably should be repaired.

I have to say though .... did you ever take a picture of something (like maybe a spider) and then look at it on your computer?  It could be only half an inch long, but the picture makes it look six inches wide?  That's what I was thinking as they showed me all these spots that needed repair for a total of $595 MORE than the $395 to do the leveling.

In the back of my head I'm thinking ... I've got scuba goggles, dust masks and a roll of gorilla tape ... why can't "I" do it for free?  All I need is a pair of coveralls.  So I passed on their generous offer.
As to the leveling, in came a five foot long level and a laser beam on a tripod.  He walked throughout the house, taking measurements.  It seems my bedroom side needed a little TLC.  Generally, you can tell by cracks appearing in the wall corners and doors that will not shut.  

Lucky for me, two doors wouldn't shut because of the latches.  The very nice (and good looking) man grabbed a hammer and fixed them both.  I'm impressed ..... another company that provides good service.

I noticed later that I didn't have to hold the front door shut in order to flip the dead bolt, so leveling definitely helped that!

There was one more problem.  I knew the dryer vent wasn't kosher ... it looked like this underneath the house.  All those corners are perfect spots to collect lint, making the dryer not work so well, not to mention being a fire hazard.  I asked if he could give me a price on fixing that.
Yes ... yes he could.  Zero dollars to strap it up and cut off the extra three feet.  Seriously?  It took both of his men to fix it, so I gave him $50 cash and said they should all go out to lunch.  It was worth it to me to have it fixed.  You should have seen the amount of lint that came out of the vent.
I'm feeling pretty good about my house now.  No water leaks, it's level and my dryer vent is fixed.  Maybe I can find a pair of coveralls at the Goodwill store.

Next up .... I'll report on my venture into Solar panels for the roof.  

Thursday, September 13, 2018

The Howl of Contentment

Yesterday morning as I was writing the blog, I could hear a huge pack of coyotes howling in the distance.  I love to hear their wails ... I like to think they are howls of contentment because I'm just content to sit on the porch and listen.

With a little bit of breeze coming up in the afternoons, I thought maybe I could get in some kite flying out at the fairgrounds.  I've no idea if they will chase me off or not, but this time of year there is no one around ... or at least that's what I thought!

I went directly to the back where the old RV park was located and immediately saw this coyote in the distance.  She was very wary when she saw me and stopped dead in her tracks.   I waited.

Pretty soon she continued on towards me.  I'm thinking this is crazy .... coyotes don't do this, they run away.  Unfortunately I didn't have my big camera with me.
That's really strange.  She went straight to the building and around the corner.  Okay ... weird coyote sighting is over ... time to fly my kites.  That's when I discovered my first big problem.  You must have a kite stake to hold the handles down while you unroll the lines and set up the kite.  Otherwise, as soon as you turn the kite up, it will fly off into the air dragging the lines with it.

I grabbed my stake and jammed it into the ground, almost breaking my wrist.  Yikes!!  The ground is like concrete.  I looked around for something heavy to lay on top of the handles, but there was nothing in sight.  Well shoot ... I guess I'm out of luck.  I made a note to stick a big rock in my Jeep.

As I slowly drove off past the building, I spotted the coyote sitting in the shade of a big tree, licking her coat.  Now that's REALLY weird.  When I got home and enlarged the picture ... sorry it's so bad, but it was a phone image ... I think I see why.  

No coyote I've ever seen has white legs.  Surely this is either a dog with the longest legs ever, or it's a hybrid.  Maybe it's Chupacabra!!!  One of the strangest things I've seen here in Arizona.  
Accept for this weird critter that I found hanging out on my screen when I got home.  What the heck is THIS?  Usually I see the biggest praying mantis' ever hanging out trying to catch dinner.  I'm thinking I'll sleep better when I get back to California knowing the only bugs in my house are flies.
I also discovered this guy is a horned lizard.  If caught in a bad situation ... like a snake having him for dinner is imminent ... they will puff up like a balloon.  Yup .... I watch National Geographic!!
I almost gave a big howl of contentment when I spotted these at the grocery store.  It's probably the only time of year I buy Oreo cookies.  They usually have the orange filling, but I think this is the first time I've seen the pumpkin face cookie.  YUM YUM!!
The kitty saga continues.  Every day now I'm met with open drawers and stuff piled on the floor.  I apologize to the Chance family ... so far I've just stuffed everything back in the drawers instead of folding it nicely.  Bad Nancy!!  
Apparently Miss Snoopy is missing her Mom and thinks that emptying the drawers might bring her back.  She spent the entire two hours yesterday sitting on my lap rubbing her head all over me.  I gave her lots of pets to ensure HER contentment.
Missy on the other hand is content to be the Queen of the Roost.  Yeah scratch me on the head a few times, then leave me alone.  It's so funny they all have such different personalities.
I had planned something cool today, like the Tucson Botanical Gardens or the Mini Time Machine Museum, but instead I'll be sitting here waiting for the home leveling crew to arrive.  Although called a manufactured home, this is actually a mobile home set on a foundation with blocks in the middle keeping it afloat.

Even though little water gets underneath, the soil still settles enough to require re-leveling so the doors and windows will work.  I had no idea.  My neighbor just above said they needed theirs done too, so I called and got us a discount if done on the same day ... which is today.  Maybe now my sliding door will close and it won't sound like a haunted house when I walk across the floor.

Wednesday, September 12, 2018

Do You Check Your Receipts?

It was a beautiful cool morning yesterday.  In fact, it's been almost frigid at 68 degrees in the mornings.  I go around and open up every door to let in the fresh air.  Then it's on to normal things, like preparing a first class breakfast for the puppies and Jonathan.  I think they eat better than I do.

Having run out of Cooper's chicken, I made a quick trip to Safeway, picked up a few things and rushed back home.

Do you check your receipts?  I do not, but that will change as of yesterday.  When I got home to cut up the chicken, it was raw in the middle.  Here's the other thing .... I never complain except to my friends, or in this case, the dogs and cats.

I decided to take the price tag back to the store and tell them ... a FIRST for me.  For no reason whatsoever, I checked the receipt.  Honestly, I couldn't even FIND the chicken.  Farmhouse Bacon??  What was that?   Expensive avocados?  Check.  Finally, at the very bottom, OPN NAT WH.  What the heck was that?

I went back over everything I purchased, even putting it out on the table.  Finally it dawned on me ... that was the chicken and they charged me for TWO!!!  Hey, I only bought ONE!!

Back to the store I went, asking for a Manager.  I explained about the raw chicken, but that it didn't really matter since I was feeding it to my dog.  But I wasn't happy about being charged for two chickens.  She refunded me the entire $17.98 with a smile.

The moral of the story?  Always give your receipts a once over.  It might save you lots of money.  I mean really, that could be two lousy tacos and a lemonade!!
On the way home, I looked down this road for the umpteenth time.  There is a long string of geocaches set out in remembrance of his Vietnam buddies, most of whom did not survive.  I figured it was an appropriate day to check them out.
With no one in sight, I tromped through the mesquite trees and creosote bushes, always keeping a wary eye out for snakes.  You follow the arrow on your phone map until you are within several feet, then you try to find either the box or tube, whatever it is that contains a log sheet for you to sign.

It's like a fun treasure hunt!  Kind of fun anyway, until you get your hair caught up in the tree branches and your legs scratched from trying to skinny between the bushes.  I definitely should have worn long pants.
Luckily I found about four before being bit by a HUGE ant the size of Cooper.  Okay ... enough of THAT!!  I headed back home to discover four bites on my legs from something caustic.  They itch like crazy.  Are there no-seeums here?  Geocaching ... it's so FUN!!!
Once home, I did the once around check just to be sure there were no creatures to add to my marks on the wall.  Just like notches on a gun handle ... Dead Spiders - 3.  Dead Scorpions - 2.  Hopefully there won't be any more added to that anytime soon!!
There's one more thing you need to check besides your receipts.  Really check out those emails you receive before clicking them open.  I received one from Pay Pal who wanted proof of income before verifying my credit.  I don't even have a Pay Pal account ... but if you do, NEVER verify anything.  It's a scam.

One more from Barclaycard U.S.  It's mandatory that you verify this information before your on-line banking can be restored.  On my computer, which is a Mac, if I move the mouse over the name (without clicking) it will show a small downward facing arrow.  If I click on that arrow, it shows the entire address of the sender.  You can easily tell it's not from Barclaycard.

Same goes for one I received from Apple about not being able to log into my account.  Verify information.  That one almost got me since I had recently had a problem signing in to update my phone.  I checked the sender's address ... it was totally a fake, even though it looked absolutely real.  BEWARE of people trying to sneak into your back pocket.

I think I'm up for a little more thrashing and crashing today ... I'm going to hit the rest of those geocaches .... with long pants and cowboy boots.