Here we are almost four weeks into our journey. We have been experiencing a much more mellow mode of travel after our last two adventures.
We left Cal and Linda's house and made our way north to Parker where we stayed with Ryan and Heather Callahan. We stayed in Parker two days and were treated to pizza, movies, a pool party and the company of two small people: Naomi and Ben. Ben is only two months old so he was pretty quiet company, but Naomi is a bright, fun little two year old and we looked for bugs in the backyard, read some books, and watched Sesame Street music videos.
You will start to recognize this parting shot..
From Parker we drove the short distance into downtown Denver to stay with my cousin Abby. She made up the honeymoon suite (the apartment of a friend who just happened to be out of town) with satin sheets and all. We spent more time by the pool where I thoroughly enjoyed getting Deuce to jump in the pool. Deuce is Abby's adorable pug who thinks he can swim, but mostly he sinks. Abby took me to the posh salon where she works and I got the full treatment: wash, deep conditioning, cut, and straightening. It is unfortunate that we don't have a before and after photo of my hair because she really worked some magic.
With Abby the morning we left.
Outside the modern art museum in downtown Denver.
From Denver we wound our way through the mountains to the west. We found ourselves in the Vail area where we stayed with Mark's high school friend Nick Bergquist and his new wife Heather. Nick and Mark together are kind of like Naomi and I together--you can just tell they have been friends for ages. Heather took me on a great trail run and cooked us some amazing meals.
After Vail we decided that we needed some time in the mountains and so we headed south to Buena Vista. We thought "climbing" a fourteener might be a good rest day for us. We picked an easy one- Mt. Yale and started hiking at 6:30 am (apparently that is a late start by Colorado standards). Through the hordes of people we met along the trail I started to learn about the phenomenon of "climbing" fourteeners in Colorado.
Here is Mark taking a break to do some technical juggling on our way up Mt. Yale.
It was cold. I wore socks on my hands. Apparently if you are an experienced 14er you bring gloves. Who knew?
Needing a good meal after our climb we thought "who better to go spend time with than the amazing Bozeman family?" So we did. They whipped up a fabulous chicken korma the first night, and the food only got better from there. We spent much quality time with the six above-average Bozeman children who range in age from 12 years to 3 months. There was a lot of great conversations, a short but steep hike, some ice cream and chess playing. Hmm..and miraculously, out of nowhere, a $20 bill appeared. Any theories as to where this may have come from? We have some ideas..
Gabriel, 6 years old, teaching Mark how to play chess.
I'm always a sucker for the toddlers.
The wonderful Bozeman family.
Which brings us mostly up to the present. Yesterday we spent the afternoon in Manitou Springs with Curtis and Emily, more college friends of Mark's. Manitou Springs is a unique town just west of Colorado Springs. We looked at some neat Navajo stuff and did a "hike" to some waterfalls. It was at least 0.2 miles. Strenuous.
We are now waiting for the weather to improve so that we can head up to Rocky Mountain National Park to climb before heading to the Regier family reunion in Estes Park. At least we have a dry place to stay-thanks Masimers! And I hear there's a big football game to watch today..
So until next time. Cheers.