I sought out the Mazda dealer today, the only repair shop in town that could diagnose my problem. I find this difficult to believe with todays technology, but it was only 5 blocks from our 'home' so I went there. The 'check engine light' came on yesterday and because it is hooked to a myriad of sensors under the hood, it is best to err on the side of caution. The only thing I am capable of checking myself is the tightness of the fuel filler cap.
As it turned out, $93 later, it is a sticking purge valve, some useless piece of pollution control equipment that is not really necessary to the smooth operation of my engine. We will drive home without it functioning properly, but then again, it may never stick again. The part was only able to arrive in 10 days so the decision was made. But, as you can guess, it pretty well killed the whole day. We had no appointment and there is only one qualified Mazda tecnician in town so we were at their mercy.
We walked a lot today and read by the pool in a sheltered spot. It was high thin overcast and a cool breeze. More of the same for the next few days so we are heading north tomorrow. We are concerned about the storms in Northern California too. We have to drive through there and there may be a window between storms in the next day or three.
We checked out the Golden Corral tonight and found it not too bad for price and quality. They have a bakery and Chocoholic Station when you are done loading up on steak, fried chicken, etc. and I did not feint at the challenge. Hey, I only had fruit and a peanut butter cookie for lunch!This place is a very popular buffet and grill but they put you through like a cattle feed lot. Too much flourescent lighting to sit and talk after the meal. It looks like a license to print money.
There was an amazing sunset tonight, in its height of glory as we were driving home. No camera with me this time so you will have to take my word for it that it had unique southwest colours that I have never seen in a sunset before. The deep oranges were contrasted in distinct lines against an aqua blue that looked more like water than sky. There is aproblem here from a photographers point of view and that is that there is no place to take a desert sunset picture with any kind of desert in the foreground. Buildings and powerlines block every view in spite of being in the middle of the desert.
I will try to post on the way home but of course will be limited by availability of WiFi.