I have lived in Colorado for many years now. I don't know why I'm surprised when spring is such a mess. It starts with snow off and on in March, April, sometimes into May. The flowers finally poke their heads out of the dirt, only to get slammed with snow. Fortunately, so far this year, they haven't been snowed on. But we've had really cold, windy days, and two days of a lovely rain.
We usually have one really nice day each week, giving us hope. Yesterday it was very cold and windy until about 3:00 in the afternoon when suddenly, the wind blew all the clouds away, probably to Nebraska, or maybe up to South Dakota, where it's snowing today. Wherever it went, the later afternoon was beautiful. We went to Greeley, a few miles east, for a birthday party, and the trip back to Loveland was beautiful as the snowy peaks showed their faces for the first time in days.
Springtime always brings lots of work for DC, as he gets the yard ready for the summer. One constant, every year, is some sort of problem with the sprinkling system. This year as he prepared to start the system, he discovered some leaks. As he dug and searched, he found this going on --
This tree is probably 30 years old this year - it was probably 4 inches in diameter when we planted it. It is huge --
---as are the roots --
As he dug to find the problem, he found this ---
These roots were entwined with the black sprinkler hose, causing leaks in these two lines --
The sod is sitting in the yard in a wheel barrow, waiting for sunshine, or at least no rain or snow, so that he can get back to the job.
We had company last week-end - a friend of DC's from his youth in Wisconsin. This man became a friend of mine through CaringBridge, when his wife was dealing with lung cancer (non-smoker's) last year. He wrote beautifully about the journey, and I wrote comments often. He wanted to come and visit us (and DC's sister as well). Last week-end the opportunity presented itself in an unusual form. He offered to make the trip out here with a friend whose mom had died of cancer, who needed his support.
We had hoped to show off our beautiful state and enjoy a day trip. We did enjoy the trip, the weather certainly did not cooperate. I wish I had counted how many time DC said, as he drove through the canyons, "Now if the sun were shining, you could see . . . " It got to be humorous.
We went through the Boulder Canyon up to a ghost town called Gold Hill. It's not technically a ghost town any more, because some hardy souls have decided it would be a good place to live and are repopulating it in the last few years. This caught our eye right away when we parked and got out of the car ---
Needless to say, there were no birds in the cage!
There are several buildings that are on the National Registry - it would be fun to eat here sometime.
Just a view of "Main Street"
We took the Peak-to-Peak Highway over to Estes Park, where we had lunch at our favorite little restaurant, The Big Horn Restaurant (formerly Cafe - came up in the world, I guess)
Believe it or not, all these years I've lived in Colorado, I have driven by the Stanley Hotel hundreds of times, but never gone in to have a look. We remedied that situation after lunch. The Stanley Hotel was built by the creator of the Stanley Steamer.
It is a beautiful hotel with amazing views. I would love to stay there sometime - I want one of those rooms with the balcony.
The hotel has been open since 1909. It is a very popular wedding/reception destination. I love this beautiful piano, and this "Music Room."
One of the rooms was being cleaned, so I grabbed the chance to take a couple of pictures.
If you're a Stephen King fan, which I'm not, you probably know that his book The Shining was based on this hotel. It seems that there are many ghost stories connected with the history. The mini-series (which I didn't watch) was filmed here, and this mock-up of the hotel was used for the outdoor views, in my understanding. The second picture gives you a bit of perspective of the size.
As we were getting ready to leave, one of those wonderful serendipitous moments occurred - Kristen's favorite elementary teacher ever (5th grade) walked in with her family - they were scouting out wedding sites. What fun to see her again.
Our last photo op was a few minutes besides the fireplace on this cold and gloomy day -
Thanks for going along on our little day trip - I know it's too long, Grammy!
Have a wonderful week!