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Wednesday, 26 October 2005 16:00

This park is so quiet; it's away from highways and railroads, giving us such sound sleeps and is a pleasant change from some other parks we have been at in the past. Sometimes in the wee hours of the morning, while it is still dark, we can even hear the coyotes yelping as they cross the desert. It is not terribly busy here yet because we are here early in the season and once the park fills up, there may be more activity but the surroundings will remain serene. This morning, after a wonderful, peaceful sleep, we decided to walk around the park to familiarize ourselves with it and to get some much-needed exercise.

There are over four hundred campsites here, two extra-large swimming pools, a kiddie pool, two large hot tubs, two tennis courts, a pickle-ball court, two laundromats, two large games rooms, two ponds, a massage salon and a small store. It is a membership park with both Coast-to-Coast and RPI which means to stay here one has to be a member of either of these clubs. Catalina Spa is our home park with RPI and we had an opportunity this year to book a site for the entire winter at an extremely good rate so we did. Our kids are all going to spend some time with us at some point over the winter and we can reserve a nice rental unit for them for a minimal cost if we choose. There are 125 or so golf courses in the area, the average winter highs are 22C and there are approximately 356 days of sunshine a year. The swimming pools and hot tubs are heated naturally by the fresh mineral water that is piped into them all day long which is not chlorinated, just constantly replenished and circulated. We are in the Mojave Desert within two hours of LA, San Diego, Mexico and less than an hour from Joshua Tree National Park.

We are not the youngest people here, nor are we the oldest however the population overall are predominantly seniors. There are other Canadians here from Alberta, BC and Ontario and American's from every state. Everyone we have met so far has been very friendly and they have made us feel extremely welcome. Our plan is to do some volunteer work here at the park, explore the area and truly relax. Whether we will do this again remains to be seen and this winter this will be a test but there you have it... the reasons we are here and why we are doing it.