I can see IKEA from here

Tomorrow the air bus takes me to the snow flurries in Louisville KY, so I am savoring my last day with my family in sunny Phoenix AZ.  Flying from Phoenix means I can get to Louisville on a direct flight instead of getting routing past the slot machines in Las Vegas, and coming here a day early saves me a pre-dawn drive up from Tucson.

This is all part of my annual effort to make the RVIA trip less tedious.  Brett and I have the essentials of the trip narrowed down to two nights and one day, we’ve managed to figure out how to eat reasonably well while in tradeshow-land, and now I’ve got direct flights to and fro.  My goal is to get this trip down to the point where we fly early in the morning, do our work, and fly out the same day.  Can’t do anything about the dismal weather, however.

Since we were in Phoenix today, we decided to drop in on IKEA in Tempe for a couple of things.  Emma was predictably bored with this prospect but soon found a way to entertain herself. She grabbed one of the free pencils and started noting the Swedish product names that amused her the most.  These included FARKOST, PULT, ERBIUM, FANAHOLM, SMYCKA, JANSJO (the name of the flexible LED light we bought for her bedroom), and FORTRAFFLIG.  Having selected a couple dozen names, I suppose the next phase of the game would be to come up with definitions for each name, but we rescued her from the depths of the IKEA maze before she got to that part.

We wrapped up this evening with a hike in the nearby South Mountain Park.  I had wanted to explore this desert park last July when Eleanor was in town, but the 110-degree heat kept us away.  This time of year it’s just perfect for hiking, mountain biking, walking the dog, and running — all of which were going on while we visited.  I recommend it for an easy short hike at sunset if you’re in town this winter.  Keep in mind it is an urban park.  While we were at the summit of a small hill we heard a little boy exclaim, “Daddy, I can see IKEA from here!”

Tonight we are having a simple smorgasbord (another Swedish word) in the hotel room, made up of goodies we bought at AJ’s Fine Foods this afternoon.  French bread, two cheese, pear & raspberries, chicken kabobs, salmon, curry chicken salad, celery & cucumber, plus several interesting desserts from the pastry case.  I’ll have an early breakfast with E&E in the hotel Monday morning, and then hop the jet.  Expect updates from RVIA.  I’m hoping for something new and exciting to be announced — by anyone — but I’m not holding my breath waiting.

By the way, I am sending out tweets on Twitter these days as part of my ongoing analysis of the use of social media, so if that is your sort of thing, just follow “airstreamlife” on Twitter.  The tweets won’t contain much info that doesn’t appear here, however. The blog still predominates my communications with the world, as I find it hard to be interesting and descriptive in 140 characters.

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