Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Colorado in summer

Wife and I love to travel. With her retirement coming up at the end of this year, she will probably travel more, although some of that will be without me. I intend, Lord willing, to keep working about six more years, maybe longer.

Much of her travel will continue to be to Little Rock, where her parents live; to Huntsville, where Daughter, SIL and GS1 reside; and Atlanta, home of Older Son, DIL and GS2. We love to go to Mishawaka, IN, where Younger Son lives, but with the travel he does in his job, he works it out to come to Nashville off and on throughout the year, so we rely more on him to come see us. We had a blast, however, when we went there last fall for a Notre Dame football game, even though he had to work a good bit of the time we were there.

In addition to that travel, we enjoy the more extended and leisurely kind as well. Wife is of the opinion this is the time of life to be marking places off the list. If we want to go there, we need to be making plans -- that's her thought.

I don't necessarily disagree, but again, I still work and will continue to do so for the foreseeable future. I can manage a few trips through the year, but work still calls me back.

Anyway, this summer, in addition to the weekend I had with the boys for baseball in Philadelphia, we spent the week of July 4th in Breckenridge, CO. Everyone in the family managed to make it and it was delightful.

I have a particular affinity for Colorado in summer since I spent the summers of 1980 and 1981 there, working in Rocky Mountain National Park. It was idyllic and truly two of the best summers of my life.

Breckenridge is a ski community about 80 miles west of Denver, that converts to a lovely, lush green area in the summer months. We all flew into Denver on Saturday, June 30. Wife, Daughter, SIL, GS1 and I flew from Nashville. Younger Son managed to work in Atlanta the week before we left, so he flew out with Older Son, DIL and GS2. We arrived within about a half hour of each other.

With a total of nine of us, counting the little guys, it took two SUVs to get us from Denver to Breckenridge.

We rented a condo, with a wonderful back porch, on one of the ski slopes and spent the week enjoying the beautiful scenery. There are so many things I love about the Colorado Rockies in summer but what I love most is the weather. It can be plenty hot in Denver, but once you're up in the mountains, humidity is virtually non-existent and the highs might reach mid-70s, maybe an 80 here or there, but hey I'll take it. The nights are cool and crisp and when I'm there, I'm in my happy place.

We spent the week doing fun things like hiking, riding an alpine slide, walking around the lovely town, going to a spectacular July 4th parade and reading on the back porch. The ladies spent a half-day at a spa. The guys, other than me, played golf a couple of times. The guys, including me, went fishing on Lake Dillon one day and caught the most beautiful rainbow trout and salmon (yes, salmon -- the lake is sourced by a river) which we enjoyed for lunch the next day.

Also, everyone indulged me as we took a day trip over to the aforementioned Rocky Mountain National Park, including the town of Grand Lake at the west entrance where I lived those two summers. Everyone was kind and patient as I recounted those glorious days there.

It was a wonderful trip and it was over all too soon. But great memories.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Recent writing

Since I've had a hard time getting around to posting here lately, I thought I would share a couple of my recent columns for the local publication I write for. Promise to be back with more original blogging stuff soon.