28th anniversary on the 28th. Didn't realize that was going to happen until yesterday.
Anyway, lovely day. We went out for breakfast at our favorite little place locally, McCoy's. I wish they had a website...it would be so great to share with ya'll. I could have taken some pics...duh. Anyway, Athens omelet with spinach, olives, tomatoes and feta cheese. I just wish there was some place that we could find grits. Besides our house, I mean.
After breakfast we went by Best Buy and I picked out a new phone. They didn't have a pink one, so I chose an LG...very nice. I wanted a blue one, so it's coming up from Denver. The sales guy was pretty funny.
SG: We have silver ones, but there is not a blue one in the area.
Me: What's the area?
SG: Longmont, Loveland, Greeley and here.
Me: Anything in Denver?
SG: Yes, but it will take a few days.
Me: Verizon has been telling me for 7 months that I am eligible for an upgrade so I can probably live another 5 days without a new phone.
SG: Oh, okay.
Me: (turning my back and rolling my eyes)
So, new phone ordered. We discussed what to do for the day and decide to drive up to Estes. We go by the house to grab jackets and give the kids directions for the day. There are a couple of routes we can take, so we decided to take the long way. So we went out Rist Canyon and talked about the differences from our last trip and decided that it's probably been two years since we had been up there...deciding that it had been probably two years. Once you get over the ridge, there is a difference. One side is green and tree covered, the other side is more arid, lots fewer trees. We saw a lot more For Sale signs than the last time and new construction. The roads were in very good shape. Most of the storms coming through have been fast moving ones and they've dumped snow to the north and south of us. We've had a pretty dry winter down here in the foothills, but they've had some good snow up in the mountains. And it was a beautiful drive.
I'm sure a number of people built their dream homes up there, but when gas prices were pushed so artificially high in 2008...they realized that living up in the mountains is harder than it seemed. You really have to be prepared mentally for it. When the snows start, your commute get a LOT longer. Dealing with having to leave a lot earlier in the mornings, during school days your kids have to be prepared to leave to. If you are adding an extra 2 hours to your days....that's hard. The county does a sensational job keeping the roads clear as the school buses have to take them. They actually do a better job at maintenance than the city does. But if your kids go to schools that the bus doesn't service. Getting home and then fixing dinner, doing homework, etc. There was a time when we would have done it, but right now it's not sensible.
We got through Masonville and turned by the Merchantile. I'll go back one day and take pictures of it....sheer delight. But once we turned up into Thompson Canyon and the hills get REALLY high and sheer. As we went up and around the curves, the cars in front of us slowed and slowed...aggravating...until we came around the curve and realized what everyone had slowed for...about a half dozen bighorn sheep. Probably yearlings...those horns were so cute...and short for now. I guess I need to do some research on them to see if males and females both have horns, just the males. And of course, we just have camera phones with us (along with the other cars...ONE of them had a real camera) So we pulled over like everyone else and pulled out our phones and took pics. For some reason my phone doesn't want to send them tonight so I have to try it again tomorrow. But I'll get them posted as soon as I can.
We pull back on the road and head back up. There is still some snow on the south (?) side of the roads...the mountains are to the west of us but once you are actually in them...I have NO idea which direction is which. So, we'll just say south ;D. We came up around the road and could see the snow covered Mummy Range in the hills. It was gorgeous. I forget the name of the road along there but I looked up and saw some elk crossing the road...looked over to my left and saw the rest of the herd. Probably about 150 or so in the herd there, and then others up higher in the fields. I have no idea the name of the ranch but it's gorgeous. I really need to go back up there and take some pics of the B&B along there. There are actually several up there...stunning. I can't wait to go inside.
We got into Estes shortly after 1, parked (it was amazing...we saw a spot--one of two in the row--and decided that we could pull in to that one...there was another truck that started down that row and began to pull into the place...we'd just decided that we'd take the one 3 cards down...little harder to get in to. The driver looked up and saw us and BACKED OUT OF THE SPOT and motioned for us to take it! I honestly can't remember the last time that happened, if ever. Particularly in CO.
We went parked, and walked down the sidewalk to Penelope's and had hot dogs. How romantic can you get? We walked on down...Estes has some of the loveliest shops and, in what has become my mantra in this post, we'll go back up and I'll take pics. We went into the Church Shops there...tiny 'mall' with about a half dozen shops and a restaurant. I was looking fora little pewter unicorn. I had one that I got in about '78 or 79 in College Station. I can't remember the name of the little shop, but he was only a couple of dollars. Seated, with the goofiest look on his face. I fell in love and named him Phred. Phred went to college with me, back home, got married and to all my jobs. He used to sit on my computer monitors. Once I 'retired', he sat on my dresser...at some point he'd lost about half his horn, but I loved him. He'd disappear at times, but I did manage to find him again...not sure where he is right now, so I wanted a new one. I'd seen one up there several years ago but, as the retail business goes, I guess the place went out of business. We went in probably every store there that had pewter and no luck. However, in the Irish shop in the Church Shops, Cabinet Man found a very similar one in resin, I guess. I still wanted to find a pewter one, so we looked. And found the ice cream store was now carrying BLUE BELL! Heavenly. Went into one little store that was pretty crowded, etc. I'd have loved to get my hands on the stuff, display those quilts, etc...and declutter. Chatted with the proprietress (isn't that a lovely word?) about the old quilt hanging in the back that she was restoring. Civil War era. In remarkably good shape, it was longer than they usually are, but they were made longer for the soldiers' beds. So she'd taken two rows off the bottom and moved them to the side to make it wider. She was also having to find another blue that would give her enough to replace some. She was probably going to back it with muslin. I'll go back up in April or so and see if she has finished it. I want to go before the season starts up there...it's TOO busy then.
We didn't find the pewter unicorn, so went back to the Irish shop to buy that one. He was still there, and we got to chatting with the proprietress. (love it again). I had not noticed...but her dog was lying over in the back. Leer, her Irish wolfhound...right at a year old...150 lbs of absolute sweetness. VERY gentle...I couldn't get him to come over and see me...too much effort. Apparently he was sulking 'cause she put him on a 'leash' (it was a string, the silly baby). He'll grow for another year. Again, want to go back up there with the camera and get some pics of him. She gave us the names of a couple of breeders. We don't want a show quality dog, just a family dog...eventually.
After stopping for Blue Bell ice cream cone, we came home. 28 years of marriage....ups, downs, ins and outs....wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. No one else, no place.
Well, time to close this one. I'll post pics as soon as I can get the pics uploaded. Both dogs and Prince Charming have fallen asleep...and two of the three are snoring....;D