Saturday, December 27, 2008

A trip to Wyoming

First, I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Working at the map store (retail) has left me little time for blogging. I have missed reading and promise to get back as soon as things get back to normal, whatever that is.
My older brother John came down from Cheyenne, Wyoming to spend Christmas with us. As usual, the trip was very pleasant and all too short. I took him back to Cheyenne this afternoon. Cheyenne is a two hour drive north of Boulder. It is two different worlds. Boulder is nestled along the front range of the Rocky Mountains. Cheyenne is high on the wind swept planes. On our trip north we saw the largest Prong Horn Antelope herd I have ever seen. There must have been at least 100 animals. They were just beautiful. A few miles north of the antelope were a large heard of buffalo. They are just stunning...a reminder of the old west, before the white man arrived.
The wind was gusting to over 60 MPH and the warning signs were posted. We saw the remains of 5 tractor trailers on the side of the road. They had all been blown over by the strong winds and were laying on their side. As I returned home I witnessed one almost topple over. It went over on two wheels but the driver was able to control the vehicle and avert a serious accident.
As I approached Boulder on the Boulder-Longmont diagonal highway, a rather large bird caught my eye. It was soring close to the ground. We do have a lot of hawks out here and they are always sitting on telephone poles or circling, looking for mice. This bird was different. It floated as if it owned the sky. I thought I saw white on it's tail. As I got closer, I could tell that it was white. Knowing only one large bird with white on it's tail, I watched to see if it was, as I suspected, a bald eagle. It turned skyward and confirmed my suspicions. A rare sighting of another beautiful animal.
Janice and I are off to Fort Collins for a night of frivolity with old friends.
New Year's eve we are hosting the 1st part of the Sunshine Progressive New Year's Eve Party. Cocktails are at our house at 6PM. Steve and Dee are hosting Dinner at 8PM. At 10PM we all move up to Steve and Lisa's for dessert and the welcoming of the new year.
Best wishes to all.
PS...Thank you Santa for the new chain saw!!!!!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving to all. It's a very cool day in Sunshine. The sky's are overcast and snow is in the forecast for this afternoon and tonight. Janice, Nate and I were joined by a group of our neighbors for our Thanksgiving morning walk. As we passed the Forest Jones house we found Zach and Natalie outside with their puppy dog. Zach was working on his wood pile and splitting wood. We paused in front of our mayors house (Chris) and snapped this picture. We walked up the hill to the Sunshine Saddle and then turned around. On the way down we passed others walking. Michelle and her two dogs came outside to pass on holiday greetings. As we passed Steve and Dee's house, Steve came outside and announced that he had made far too much coffee and would like to share. We shared.
I need to say farewell to my chainsaw. I wanted to finish cutting 6 logs this afternoon. I only completed 3 before my chainsaw started smoking and quit working. I will admit that I gave it a work-out this year. So farewell my friend, the chainsaw. We'll see what Santa can do this Christmas, for a chainsaw is on my list.
Here's wishing you all a very pleasant day.....gobble, gobble.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Have you ever noticed that every town has its "characters"? You know the ones. That familiar face you have seen around town for years. He's the one that is a little different. He has something that stands out....his walk, his old car, the old clothes he wears. You don't see him with friends but he is often chatting with someone. He seems friendly but no one is really close to him. He sort of defines the town. Not that he is like anybody else, but if you saw him in any other community, he would be out of place.
I first noticed our friend sitting on the steps of Boulder's downtown post office. The old post office, built in the 1950's; the white building with the simulated Roman columns. You have to walk up 6 or 7 steps to front door. He was sitting there wearing a Indiana Jones style hat with 3 or 4 feathers pointing backwards out of the turquoise hat band. Pinned to the front was an eagle, the insignia for a full bird colonel in the army. His face was covered with a white beard, accented with a few black streaks and his tinted glasses covered his eyes. Through his 6 or 7 layers of coats you could see his army camo pants and his black military boots.
The first time I saw him, I passed him without acknowledging his presence. He seemed to be sitting on the steps almost every time I went past the post office. I started to wonder if he was a homeless veteran. One morning in June, just after I opened the store, he entered. At first glance, I was sure he was going to ask for a handout. He politely asked if he could see a magnifying glass. I agreed and handed him the one we use in the store. He pulled a small white stone out of one of his may pockets and looked at it through the glass. I asked him what he was studying. He handed me the white rock and asked me what I thought it was. I didn't need a magnifying glass. I was looking at a very smooth piece of white quartz with a piece of gold in a small notch. It wasn't very big and probably not worth much, but it was gold. I asked him where he found it and he told me it was in the sand down by Boulder Creek. We had a good laugh, he thanked me for the use of the magnifying glass and went on his way.
Since then I have seen him around town. When we pass, we smile and sometimes say "Hello". He came in the store last evening, about a half hour before I closed. He wanted to look at a clock we have mounted on the wall. It is a map of the world with a light projected from the rear, indicating the parts of the earth that are illuminated by the sun. I asked him about the white rock. He smiled and pulled it out of one of his many pockets. I had the munchies so I shared what was left over from my lunch, some nuts and an orange. He showed me a copy of a picture someone had painted of him. He wants to make some post cards and possibly sell them. I asked him about his military service. He looked me in the eye and could tell I was a brother. He said he was in the Air Force, 1969 to 1971. He didn't have to say any more. Those of us that served during that time frame have a bond, even though it was in different branches. We chatted quietly for a while and then he returned to his home, the street.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Well, they all look like cowboys but they sure didn't play country western music! The Halloween gig was fun. We played for 4 hours. Pretty good for a bunch of old geezers.
Milo and I said good-bye to Jan's dad this morning. He loaded up his car and headed to Arizona for the winter. Another snow-bird has headed south. We will see him again just in time for the last big snow in the spring. It always happens.
Saturday was a work project day. One of our Scouts had his Eagle Scout Project on Saturday. He will have his award soon. Now there are only two boys in the troop without their Eagle. The Scout troop will be closing down in February and we have vowed to make sure each boys earns their Eagle.
There was another bear shot and killed in Sunshine. This time it was 10 feet in front of one of our neighbors house. The State game warden has the animal and is obtaining evidence.
If you go back to my October 4th entry you will find the banter going back and forth between our neighbor, Doug and our family. Doug has been receiving post cards from various places around the world and sent me this note:
Dear Janice, David and Harry…

We have loved hearing via post cards about your extraordinary world tour. I estimate that this splendid adventure cost you in the vicinity of $100,000. While you never have been specific about the windfall that allowed you to make this incredible journey, I am very happy for you.

Of course, it’s none of my business how you financed the trip. And I certainly would never pry.

On A completely another topic, we finally have finished an inventory of items stolen from our home. The chief investigative officer for the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office says the thefts have all the earmarks of being done by some person or persons whom we might have let into the house willingly. His suspicion is it probably was perpetrated by folks who live somewhere on County Road 83 because, he says, “we have always had a lot of trouble with the perverts, trouble makers and felons who make up most of that population.”

Unlikely, he says, that is was anyone with a Sunshine Canyon address because “those people are all kind, loving, upright citizens who spent their day focused on honestly and their nights focused on integrity.” I don’t know for sure that’s true but all I can do is repeat what I’ve been told.

Anyway, the investigator says if the items stolen from us were sold on Ebay, their value would be $999,994.26. Having nothing to do with your trip, of course, but it is a quirk of numbers, isn’t it, that the cost of your trip and the value of the theft at our house are almost identical?

Have to run. Mary Ann and I are taking our annual vacation. We leave about 11 a.m. today to go have lunch at Wendy’s in Longmont. We’ll return form our vacation around 1 p.m.

Some day I'll share how he received post cards from around the world.
Keep Smiling,

Sunday, October 26, 2008

We have been blessed with some nice fall weather. The Indian summer is lasting much longer than I expected. Milo and I have been enjoying our morning walks. Bob still stops the school bus and gives Milo a treat. I have been looking at several new flags to fly at the school house. I am not able to lower the flag before dark so I will wait until next spring to raise and lower the American Flag. My favorite so far is a world flag. It is a depiction our our mother earth.

There were two private Halloween parties in Sunshine last night. We were going to try to visit both.....good intentions, poor execution. Janice and I both worked yesterday and the clock was running faster than we were. At least we made one of them. Next Saturday will be the kids Halloween at the School House. This has been a Sunshine tradition for as long as I have lived in Sunshine.

Speaking of work, I have figured out why I like working at the map store. Every customer is in a good mood! They are all planning something fun, mostly a trip someplace. Some are just quick day trips, others are trips to an exotic place int the world. What ever it is, everyone is excited.

The band is playing at the American Legion Hall next Friday night. I know it will be fun. Come on over an join us. Just mention my name at the door.

Keep smiling,


Monday, October 20, 2008

Ready for winter

I don't know that I can say that I am ever ready for winter. I know it will arrive sooner than later. I've tried to do all I can to prepare. Milo and I had fun cutting and splitting that pile of wood. Milo told me to fill the big wood boxes (not seen) first. After we stacked the remaining 3 cords of wood, we took this picture and covered it with a large tarp. The wood seems to burn better when it's dry.

Janice, Milo and I worked outside Sunday. We prepared the flower beds, planted the daffodils, raked the pine needles (no leaves up here to speak of) and swept the porch. We put the patio furniture away. Should I admit that I put up the Christmas lights. I found it's much easier to hang the lights when it's 70 degrees than when it's 2o degrees with the wind blowing. I won't turn them on until Thanksgiving. OK snow.....bring it on....I'm ready!

I have hesitated about talking about something negative in my blog. I have made it a rule to keep my blog positive. (Chris you know how I feel about criticizing, condemning and complaining.) As much as I have been fighting this, I must mention some negative Sunshine news. There was an incident that has affected everyone of our neighbors. Last week, a bear and a deer were shot and killed in the creek below our neighborhood. I don't want to say much more for this is a very sensitive issue and many of our neighbors read my every post. I could probably stump on this issue for a day or two. I don't have a problem hinting for food. I do have a problem shooting a high powered rifle in a neighborhood with 230 houses. much for my stump!

Indigo, a note for you. The bear has been my spirit guide for quite some time. I think you know how I feel.

Smiles to all.


Saturday, October 11, 2008

First Snow

So long to fall....the Sneffels range in southwest Colorado

It is a cold Saturday night. This has been a very busy week and weekend. It seems to be the weekend to celebrate OctoberFest. The band played at the American Legion hall last night. We had a great time. It was their beer fest.
This is also the weekend of The Great American Beer Festival . Our neighbor, Paul puts on the festival. 46,000 people attended the three day event. Janice and I have attended the last several years but we both had to work today. Oh well......I'm really a wine drinker anyway.
It is 10:35 at night as I write this entry. It's snowing. I have, in the past, noted our first snow. It's right on schedule. I noticed entries of October 8th, and the 10th in the last couple of years.
Speaking of my old journals, I have successfully downloaded and saved my old entries. If you are interested, the links can be found in my profile.
It's late so I'm off......I'll try to make another post soon.
Keep smiling,

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Neighborhood intruder

Ruby and Buddy

Several weeks ago there was a report of a suspecious person in the Sunshine community. Evidently it was a dark complection man going up to peoples houses and asking for odd items, such as a car battery. This report made us all a little nervous.

Thursday morning I was taking my morning walk with Milo. We spotted our neighbor, Nancy, walking in our direction. She was wearing a green jacket, black slacks and walking rather briskly. I could see the smile come across her face as she recognized us. Nancy stopped to talk. She shared her story.

When I arrived home last night, Butch related to me a story from Ruby regarding the above intruder. ... When I was leaving for work this morning I noted that one of Butch's passenger truck door was opened as were 3 of my car doors. Immediately I became more anxious, and my mind jumped to multiple conclusions none of which were pretty. I tip-toed up to the truck and looked inside luckily there was no one inside, I then tip-toed to my car looked in the back seat and front seat but saw no one. I then looked in the trunk, which held my usual paraphernalia and no person. I went back in the house to notify Butch of the disturbance (don't ask me why didn't do this first) and then left for work. As I am driving down the Canyon the sun glistens on my side window and I notice a 6-inch paw print. When I arrived at work and looked around my car, I noted several other paw prints. There is dusty dirt on all the windows, door handles, backseat and trunk. As I continue to look around the car more closely with a coworker, she asked me what happened to the passenger head rest. Half of it was missing!
As you probably have guessed by now the intruder was not in the form of a man above, but a clever Sunshine Bear who was able to open 4 car doors with little effort. Luckily, I have no food in my car since the children are grown and I remember to take my coffee mug in daily minimal damage was done. Just a word of advice watch out for that Clever Sunshine Bear!

Nancy and I laughed as she passed on Ruby's comment about Buddy, our local neighborhood bear. Ruby told nancy that Buddy learned to open car doors many years ago.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Our neighborhood

I don't want to leave an ongoing story with AOL and not keep everyone up on the progress. I am going to copy the last couple of entries just to remind you of the story.

One of our neighbors made a bird house that looks just like the Sunshine school house. I challenge my neighbors to find it's location.
Speaking of neighbors, I wanted to mention that a couple of weeks ago we were invited to a Sunday brunch at Doug and Mary Ann's. The event was totally delightful. They have a beautiful view from their house, overlooking the mountains to the south of Sunshine. Mary Ann has wanted to entertain for quite some time but Doug was against the idea. You see, Doug was afraid we (the neighbors) would try to steal everything he owns....that thought still has me laughing. You have to know Doug to enjoy his sense of humor. Doug wrote for a national magazine with the initials SI. His column was always a joy to read. MaryAnn's choice of fair could not have been better. The food was great and the guest list was tops (of course I would say that, I was included). MaryAnn reads this journal so for you walked by the bird house this morning....did you see it?

My neighbor, Doug, read my last entry when I discussed our enjoyable visit to his house and the delicious Brunch. He responded. I would like to share his comment with you. I feel honored that he would allow me to reprint his words.

Good evening, David...

Many thanks for your wonderfully kind words in your blog about our brunch. You know we loved having you and Harry here and wished Janice could have come.

Every time anybody who lives up here comes to our house, the first thing I do when they leave is begin a thorough inventory. I have not quite completed the inventory from when you and the others were here a couple weeks ago. But, so far, so good. Remarkably little was stolen. One of our cars is missing but I think someone just got confused and will bring it back by year end. About $150,000 cash is absent but, again, my guess is somebody thought they had brought it with them and just took it home. Once they focus on it, I know they'll be embarrassed over this and they'll mail it back to me. The only other missing items, and of little import, is all the silver. However, in fairness, we might very well have mistakenly thrown it out with the trash in our haste to clean up after all you pigs.


My lovely wife, Janice responded with this missive:

Dearest Doug and Mary Ann,

So sorry to have missed the brunch that you so graciously hosted a couple of Sundays ago. David and Dad had such a wonderful time.

I wanted to give you and Mary Ann a heads-up in hopes that you would keep an eye on our place over the next 3 weeks as David has surprised me with tickets for a cruise around the world. He said he just stumbled on to some extra cash and wanted to spoil his little "cupcake". Wow! The new cars are coming next week and we are remodeling the kitchen - wow! How does he do it? I didn't realize how well his band gigs were doing! Well, time to pack - take care! We'll miss you and will send postcards. David mentioned that it was with support from you two that he made the big decision - thanks!


Doug then replied:

Dear Janice...

I'm so happy for you. In fact, I saw David a day or two after our brunch and he had a spring in his step that I had not seen before. He was positively ebullient. Plus, he was, frankly, a trifle too appreciative of being included on our guest list. One of his comments was maybe a little odd: "Doug, most of all, it was great that I got to look around your entire house by myself. Being alone and unobserved gave me a chance to, well, be alone and unobserved." I dunno. But people always are saying curious things. I didn't read anything into it then and don't now.

Anyway, you have a lot of exciting things on the horizon. There's probably nothing like an around the world cruise. While we have never done that, I took Mary Ann on a comparable trip in 1967. We went to Greeley, ate at the I-Hop and stayed at the Holiday Inn Express. I tell you, it was an experience for the ages. I'm sure you'll experience similar feelings. New cars and a kitchen remodel also are things I'm familiar with. I've never bought Mary Ann a new car but I recently got her a 1948 Nash with a bumper sticker: "I go from 0 to Bitch in 2.5 seconds." And while a kitchen remodel is out of the question here, I did buy her a really classy ice box last month.

David's sudden financial success is absolutely terrific. Perhaps when you all return from your trip, he can come over and have a cup of coffee. It will be a nice chance for him to meet and get to know the sheriff and the country attorney.


I then received a missive from my good friend and neighbor Susan, who stayed with Doug and Mary Ann while her house was being remodeled. With her permission......

David, it's amazing after the neighbors wonderful hospitality in allowing me to stay at their house more than several times during my remodel that I was able to do a few more things than planned on my house. I too am able to afford a trip around the world now, but have a few more details to take care of around here to make it more comfortable. Then I'll start getting the plans ready to build a larger home which I never thought was possible.



It is such a pleasure to have a neighbors with such a great since of humor.

Friday, October 3, 2008


I'm starting to play around with this new site. Please bear (no pun intended) as I try a few things. As soon as I feel confortable, I will post a story about our neighbor, Nancy)

Here's a copy of my first entry, September 8, 2005:

Milo (My mixed breed mutt) and I started our morning walk around 7AM. The morning sky was still pink, following a spectular sunrise. After waving good-bye to the wife and son, we walked down the long driveway onto the main road. We stop at the Sunshine school house every morning and raise the American flag. The School house was built in 1900 and is no longer used as a school, but as a community gathering place. Milo was rewarded with a doggy bisquit and we marched on. We passed the spot where we were greeted by a black bear a few weeks before and walked to the fork. On the way back, the school bus passed us. Bob, the driver, usually has a treat for Milo, but not this morning. He just waved and kept going. Milo usually sits when he hears the school bus coming. He knows there is going to be a treat. This morning, I gave him one out of my own pocket.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

My move from AOL

Watch for things to come!