Finally landing at Lake Havasu City Municipal Airport, Arizona and needing to get up the river to meet up with some family for the second leg of our weekend getaway, we found ourselves immersed in services and accommodations normally reserved for the rich and famous. Well maybe not all that rich and famous crap, but we kinda felt that way with all of the services being provided by the staff and hospitable receptions at the various airports we landed at. Seems like everyone is just so damn friendly. I mean, being parked out in the last quadrant of now hell (102 degrees) away from the Lake Havasu City Municipal terminal, the flightline crew gave us a ride back to the terminal next to where my brother and I had planned the much-anticipated lunch at Waldo’s BBQ.
Waldo’s had an offer on their website for some BBQ ribs and Pulled Pork with unlimited sides (I had cole slaw . . . meh, and mac-n-cheese . . . sorry, but this was not good) and a drink for $9.95. Sheesh, If I had known there was going to be so much food, I probably wouldn’t have ordered a side of their superior onion rings. Yeah, the rings were pretty friggin good. Their beer selection was a bit below that what I consider suffiicient, by craft brewery laden San Diego standards, but I was able to find something acceptable to help alive the annunciator warning light that came on in my body in after coming out of altitude, landing in 102 degree weather and being in “party central” Lake Havasu.
Anyway, at Waldo’s, I thought we were off to a great start when the server took our order then immediately brought out some corn bread. Well, the corn bread was dry and not very tasty. The butter didn’t even help it. That remained untouched on the table the whole meal. I hope they noticed it had just one bite out of it. I think my brother had the Blackened Catfish Po-Boy. He said the sandwich was quite good. I’m guessing there are probably other things that are just as good on the menu, because judging by the crowded dining area, this Saturday noon’s lunch crowd was sufficient to consider this place a popular joint among residents, visitors and flyers alike. Unfortunately, we were in a slight rush to get up the river to our next destination, so we could not sit and savor and really analyze the food and drink, but thought it worth a retry upon our next landing.
Once I got home and relooked at the menu, I noticed several options to many of Waldo’s food items that I was not aware of, nor do I remember them being offered by the server. For example, the ribs and pulled pork were served without BBQ sauce on them, rather on the side in a mini cast skillet. I guess I could have ordered them wet and supposedly they would have been finish cooked in their sauce. Whatever, there was a lot of meat and the flavor was still pretty good and they were tasty. Also, the Po-Boy could have had the cole slaw added to the sandwich for $ .50 but I don’t remember that being offered. That is an opportunity for suggestive or upsell on that particular item. Who knows, maybe the server was super busy, ’cause I didn’t know to ask for different BBQ sauces that were also available. Damn, now I’m going to have to go back for sure. There were other items on the menu I wish we had tried, but with all of the food from the special, there’s just no way. I think this trip to Waldo’s will have to get only two ribs, I felt I got let down by other reviews. I dunno, maybe it’s the whole Havasu thing going on about serving crappy food with crappy service. I don’t want to say it was bad . . . just not that good. We’ll try it again later.
We finish with Waldo and go outside to wait for our cab ride up the river. I’m going to guess it’s about 12 miles up the river from the lake because we had to travel about 25 miles to get there in a somewhat indirect drive. The trip from the airport to Pirate Cove in Needles, CA cost us $55. We used Todd’s Shuttle Service. https://www.facebook.com/toddshuttleservice I had one other quote from another taxi service in the area of $135 to make the same trip. Todd’s was spot on for service that day. A couple days before our intended arrival, I had phoned them, emailed them and Facebook’d them letting them know I was coming in. They promised me they would make sure I had a driver available. I called them once again just as I was about to land, telling them to pick us up in an hour so we could eat. Well, the driver showed up 10 minutes early . . . perfect. We didn’t even have to wait. The driver could have been a bit more friendly . . . I think he may have said, “hello” . . . but that was definitely it. I don’t think he ever sped (huge + for Havasu area), but I did note that he was doing a bit (Ok . . . a lot) of texting once we got on Hwy 40. Now I may be wrong, but I don’t think that should be something a cab service should be doing. Anyway, we got there. Todd’s got us there cheaper than the other guy . . . possibly the cheapest. I figured that was a great deal and I questioned it several times while making arrangements with them. I had just planned on tipping the guy a $20, but I had reserved that right just in case he was a dud. Today, we got a dud! He only got $10 for his tip. I guess there’s something to say about cabbies in Lake Havasu. All he had to do was strike up a bit of conversation; like, “Hey, where did you guys fly in from?” Nothin’ . . . Oh, and if you think you’re getting the comfortable air conditioned limo treatment around this city, you had better stay in New York City; cause we got the old, busted 15 passenger van with 8 X 50 A/C. That’s right . . . open all eight windows and go 50 mph. The driver was just rocking his Megadeath, having a great time! Sorry, no big tipper here today. I had to carry conversation with the same person I’ve been striking conversation with over the last 8 hours of flight time. “Ubu . . . Speak Ubu, Speak!
Anyway, we sat at Pirate’s cove a bit and started to get acquainted with the folks there at the bar and the surroundings. We finally began our decent down river, stopping occasionally along the way to take in a sight or two, stop for a break and jump in the water. It was hot that day, but it was only hot on the west facing side of my head about 4pm. Sunscreen me! We had a nice boat though, and plenty of gawkers of the vintage Campbell.
We traveled down the river eventually crossing the lake. This day was definitely the day to have a larger boat on the lake. We traveled under London Bridge (yes, it’s actually one from London) and go down through the very un-busy channel. It wasn’t a big weekend so there were boats and hoes, just not a lot of ’em. Finally making our way to the Naked turtle, we found the party we had left up river somewhere. We didn’t have much of anywhere else to go, so we decided to get our drink on and prepare for the evening. It wasn’t until the evening started to close in on us that we realized the boat lights were not working, so we had to pull it out before we got a citation . . . It’s not worth the risk.
To conclude our evening, we met up with a friend at his house along the channel under London Bridge. We had a few more wonderful cocktails and wines to go along with his great bar-b-que’d steaks and chicken. Had some great conversation and sat outside on the deck. A very nice trip and day at Lake Havasu.