20220805 – This Is The Place and at last a Utah Scone


Howard picks Fiona and I up for a walk to Blood Lake. It’s quite an arduous walk, we go counter clockwise and at least it’s a scramble up a rock face, better than having to come down it. Certainly not an easy hike.

Took the kids to the fair. What a rip off but the kids enjoyed it. Esther got to ride on a horse, as promised. Beatrix rode the Ferris wheel, but didn’t look too happy about it at first. Jasper won a toy playing basket ball and went on the Tornado, after which he felt sick for half an hour.

Dropped kids off and Kurt and I went to Best Buy for his Wyze cameras and then to Smiths for Pizza’s. Of course I got the wrong one for Wendy, which she bitched about. Can’t ever do anything right.

Pizza’s, Paulaner and Zin for tea. Early to bed after plenty of wine.


All the fun of the fair.




The student loan scam:



Lazy start then take Kurt down to the airport, he’s going home, 3 weeks peace and quiet. How will he cope.

In the afternoon Wendy and Fiona don their slippers and pyjamas and head off to shopping at Walmart. I get to look after the 3 rug rats. No problem, they’re very well behaved.




Set of for a exploratory hike with Joe and Fiona. It’s a gorgeous blue sky morning with some low lying mist adding to the beauty.

Plan A fails because hike start point is on a gated community and gates are locked. Plan B fails because start point is difficult to locate on an industrial estate. Plan C is Kimble to Willow Creek and back – 5 mile round trip.

In the afternoon we go for a picnic down at the Deer Valley lakes. Kids get to paddle and try and catch fish; picnic; short walk around the lakes.

In the evening Wendy and I go out for a Chinese dinner with Nancy and Howard. Another awesome evening good food and great company.


I’m sick to death of the dog turd brigade. Too damn lazy to clear up after their dog. Spoils it for every one especially kids who just want to play on the nice grass. Time these owners had their noses rubbed in it and then made to clear it up. It’s disgusting anti-social behaviour.


Off to explore a new hike, Fink Again. Finally find the trail head and it’s an ok 3.2 mile hike all uphill to mid point and then all downhill, but no shade. Considering I didn’t start to 12:00 and it was a blistering hot day again it wasn’t too bad, nice breeze.

Lazy afternoon and a pleasant evening with Paulaner and Zin. A sure way to snooze through Virgin River – such chick flicks.


Up early to lead an easy hike from Silver Lake on mid-mountain to the top of Town Lift and back down on the lift. I’ve been on slow hikes before but this had to be the tortoise special. Sadly one of the guys fell so minor cuts to deal with.

Back late much to Wendy disdain, she had a real strop on. Quick turn around, tidy house and then we’re off to This Is The Place – a Mormon Heritage Village. Great place for the kids, lots of simple amusements including trains and pony rides to keep them amused. But hotter than the hinges of hell. Had a stroll around the museum but not a scrap of evidence on the Meadows Massacre – always a touchy subject for them.

You have to admire the Mormon trek, 1,400 miles pulling a hand cart with all your belongings on. We tried pulling an empty hand cart for 100 yard in the gruelling sun and it was exhausting. Men and women of steel in those days.


Thank you for choosing our car rental firm. We hate you

Next customer, please. I’m sorry for the wait, sir. At least you were able to stand out in the the glorious Spanish sunshine for the past hour. I saw you trying to find your sun cream and your hat in your suitcase. It was very nice of that man to help you when your trolley fell over.
Now, how can we at Opaque Autos Car Rentals assist you?One moment please . . . I see you’ve booked a Nissan Qashqai estate car with air conditioning for two weeks at our all-inclusive “whacky bonanza full rate” price of €37 a day, which you pre-paid under our pre-authorised pre-booking system and which includes VAT and also your environmental contribution tax.
Unfortunately I can see that this specific vehicle is no longer available, but the good news is that we do have a similar category car at no extra charge. It’s a Ford Fiesta. Yes, sir I do believe it is a tiny bit smaller, but you can still fit in a family of four and a couple of suitcases. You could put the baby buggy in the back seat with the children and the golf bags on your wife’s lap.
No, I don’t believe it does have air conditioning. I can see if another car is available. Yes, good news, there is, it is a Volkswagen Touran. Now technically that is an upgrade so we would need to charge you the slightly higher rate of €65 a day for that. This would also mean cancelling your existing booking for the Nissan that we said is not actually available. Unfortunately under the pre-authorised payment system there are no refunds, but we will be able to resell your original booking to a different customer and so make ourselves extra money.
Did you need a child seat? Oh you brought one with you. I’m sorry, that one does not meet our official acceptable standards. The details of what makes and models qualify are there in section 421, part 65, paragraph 18 of the terms and conditions on our website.
You’ll need to hire a seat from us. As you did not book in advance we’ll have to charge the “over a barrel special” price of €35 a day.
Now for insurance. Our all-inclusive whacky bonanza rate does not actually include cover, which is mandatory. We have three types: serene, super serene, and super-duper-chill-out. I would advise you to get the last one because when you eventually pick up your car you will find it parked in the tightest parking spot ever, which only a qualified stunt driver could get out of.
You’ve bought your own insurance, oh I’m sorry we don’t recognise those.
And whichever policy you choose we’ll need to secure £1,500 on your credit card, you know, just in case anything does happen because although we call our insurance policies insurance they’re not actually insurance — and besides you may have noticed that we don’t ever actually fix the cars anyway.
I’m sorry we don’t accept debit cards, or American Express, or Mastercard, or Visa. Have you got one of our Opaque Autos credit cards?
Now, just looking at the current state of your children I’d definitely recommend that you take our additional family friendly cover, at a cost of €25 a day to save the additional cost of deep cleaning the car.
Do you want to return the car empty or full of petrol? If you return it empty we’ll charge you 50 per cent more than the cost of local petrol stations. If you return it full then you will have to drive around for half an hour trying to find the nearest petrol station only to find that it is 20 miles away and by the time you return the car it no longer looks full.
Don’t worry we’re almost done.
Here’s the paperwork — it’s all in Spanish. If you’d like it translated I can give you it in Portuguese. While your son is crying hysterically because he’s lost a Pokémon card please sign here, here and here.
That box there says you agree to our tyre degradation policy — €2 a day per tyre. Without it you can’t use the tyres.
And this one here is the indicator fair usage charge — €1 every time you signal.
Now sir, there is no need to get quite so grumpy. There are dozens of people behind you in the queue watching.
I’m sorry you think we are the most backward industry in the world.
Thank you for your helpful suggestions about how hiring a car could be made more consumer-friendly and how we could embrace modern technology. Feel free to email a complaint — you will receive an acknowledgement within 180 working days. If you want to complain further, you can’t. You have almost no consumer protection.
We do actually have an app that lets you avoid the queues and pick up the keys from a machine without the need for going to the counter. It’s called our EasyPeasy service. It is very convenient and very expensive, about double the price of a normal rental, which is why no one uses it.
Thank you for choosing Opaque Autos. Your car is in bay 65a in the rentals lot, which can be found by taking the number 45 bus for half an hour towards the city centre. Get out just before your hotel.
Have a lovely holiday.


Up early again to lead an easy bike ride. 16 hard mile undulating ride. Done it many times but forgot how hard it was – may be something to do with being 3 years older.

Lazy afternoon for me as everyone else goes to musical movement at our amazing library. It’s got some fantastic facilities, including Mac’s, 3D printers, pets for the kids, play room with toys lego etc. They spend 2 hours there. Oh and they also have great books and DVD’s. You can even stream videos, audio books or eBooks online even from the UK. I wanted a book called Rigged by Mollie Hemingway, they didn’t have it so they bought a new copy for me, no cost – can you believe that, my American friends tax dollars at work, thank you. Then it’s Burger King, a more cost effective favourite than MacDonalds. The kids love it.

Fiona Oakley, Joe and I then go down to the Kamas Lions Gun Range for some target practice. Fiona’s nervous but does great with a 9mm automatic. Some great groupings.


Lazy start, my only lie in this week.

Jasper and I go bowling with Mike down at Heber. Then for my real treat, I’ve found a highly recommended diner (Chicks on Heber City Main Street) that allegedly does a Utah Scone. One of the delights on my junk food bucket list. Delicious with honey and butter on. Well worth the search and trek. Take one home for Wendy and Fiona along with a doggy bag of Jaspers Chicken strip. As well as a Utah Scone being standard with every meal they also do some of the best Chips. Some great food.

Just need to get Wendy the recipe For a Utah scone and a deep fat fryer – expensive.

Wendy and Fiona set off for the weekly shop at Walmart whilst I tend to the 3 rug rats.

Thursday evening we’re off out for dinner with Joe and Donna at Windy Ridge. Discover a new junk food delicacy, an onion ring stack.



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