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Six years of adventure with pics to prove it.

Snow and Sun

Filed under: Colorado — she_travels at 12:40 pm on Tuesday, November 27, 2007

If there is anyone thing about Colorado I love it is the weather. We were happy as larks wearing shorts and t-shirts a week ago today…the following day looked like this.

Most of the snow had melted a few days later.

The Flatirons of Boulder. Yes, the sky really is that blue. It reminds me of the water near Bora Bora.

This is moon set and sun rise.

Alrighty then, I have an update or two here. After much consideration and visa silliness I decided to go to Thailand instead of New Zealand. I may shorten the trip to Roatan in 2009 so I can spend more time in NZ and Australia.

Fall in Colorado

Filed under: Colorado,Photos — she_travels at 10:27 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

Its tough to beat the weather in Colorado, Sept, Oct and if we are lucky Nov. It has been mostly sunny and 70 for days. There have been a few chilly mornings, a bit of frost and it had attempted to snow but for the most part…BEAUTIFUL!


Sunrise..woohoo!! pink baby!

Mr. Hawk scoping for breakfast me thinks.

Sunrise and frost only just this morning..

Twlight and Party Girl.

I love this cat! Biskit, watching the sunrise.

and let us not forget the moon one morning at sunrise.

The Blog, The blog is up to date!! just in time for Thanksgiving.

Road Trip with Mom

Filed under: Educational,Photos,Virginia — she_travels at 10:14 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

I landed a house sit in Virgina just south of DC. Mom decided she wanted to go visit friends and family so we decided on a bit of a road trip. I drove while mom navigated. I had zero agenda other than arriving in Manasses Oct 3rd and arriving in Colorado Oct 17th to take care of Harley ( The coolest black lab you ever met) and the Hayes House with a kitty and two horses.

We were headed east the 26th of August.

You may or may not know this,  eastern Colorado and most of Kansas are much of nothing. We did stop in a place called Wakeeny, Kansas to have something to eat. It was a very sad, dead sorta town with only one place serving food. It was an old time pharmacy with a soda fountain with the very best BLT I have had in a long time. We had the pleasure of chatting with the locals about our adventure to the east. They were all kinds of impressed we were not only from Colorado but “oh my, driving as far east and Virginia”. It is one of the very best things about travel, chatting up the locals.

I think we got the Subaru stopped outside of St Louis some place for the evening. Mom said later she started knowing when it was time to quit cause all the color would drain out of my face when I was done. I guess that is as good as any reason to quit driving.

The next morning we were off through Kentucky….I mean to tell ya what a beautiful drive. Mom got us off what we starting calling blue roads (interstate) on to little back country, middle of the hollar town like “Betsy Sue” and “Harold” I kid you not, names of town. Places that had signs saying “Congested Area” with not a single person, car or animal about. There were hills and dales of huge trees, green green fields.. There were acres of land with white fences holding horses and small shacks with all the Halloween garb you can buy at Walmart. There were many old barns with tobacco drying in them.

Somewhere along the line I started snapping pics.

National Park-ish I think. I remember a brown sign.

It was misty and wet.

They don’t call ’em the smoky mountains for nothing. See the ever so low cloud cover?

Mom wanted to see her Aunt Ann in Richmond, Virgina.

Aunt Ann wanted to visit the cemetery where her mother in law and sister in law were buried. A town called Ashland where mom spend time in the house below every summer with her grandmother. Who, I think, was Jessie (headstone this pic). By the by – That is mom and my great aunt Ann in the pic. Ann is 92 and sharp as a tack, not to mention funny. We laughed through lunch that day.

House in Ashland.

I am standing in the street with the camera…this….

Is behind me…crazy huh? Two sets of railroad tracks in the middle of the street. Talk about noise!

Yes, me and trees. This huge old boy lives at the end of the drive at the Ashland house.

After our visit with Great Aunt Ann, mom decided a day or two at the beach would do us some good. Virgina Beach as a matter of fact. Little did we know it was a very special week end.

The Nepture Festival. Sure enough people from all over came to see the sand castles.

My favorite! It was called “Cleaning the Beach”.

At some point after the beach and after the house sit we were on “Skyline Drive” in the BlueRidge mountains, or was it Smokey Mountains. Either was it was early morning.

It is said these mountains are much much older than the ragged, jaggedness of the Rocky’s

Color we were not without.

Lets not forget my favorite!

Did I mention Bear…. Cute huh?

Lakes of Tennessee at sunset.

I think this was Tennessee on the way back to Colorado.

We also found this castle looking thing along the way.

And now…for your educational pleasure…

Did ya know cotton is grown in Arkansas? Yeah, me either.

Did ya know they make huge stacks and cover them in the fields with colors? Yeah, me either!

The other thing mom and I learned while in Arkansas…Rice is their second largest crop. Yeah, me either. Right up until the time we asked an old boy wearing a “Rice Growers” cap at the gas station.

One down the road we found this…

I can’t imagine anyone leaving the back country before happening upon at least one of them.

Ahh yes sunset that evening…we may still have been… no wait this was Oklahoma. Dang..what was the name of that place.

And then after 19 hours of driving the day before, we wanted so badly to be through Kansas and most of eastern Colorado in the dark.

Antelope just outside of Denver. Had I been thinking I would have snapped a shot of Pikes Peak on the other side of the road ..er….but I didn’t. Next road trip that direction.

Mom and I giggled all the way out and all the way back. She had grand visits with friends while I hung out in the muggy hot that is Manasses. Ahh but the cats were great fun.

We decided on the way back we would have to do it again…direction and destination forth coming.

Back to work, of sorts

Filed under: Colorado — she_travels at 9:21 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

I spent July, Aug and Sept house/horse sitting for many of my pet sitting clients from when I worked here in Boulder County full time.

A week at Elsie’s (a German Shepard) house. She was great fun to play fetch with. Three weeks at Savana’s (aussie cattle dog) house watering new plants and going for bike rides. While at both of these houses I was able to visit twice daily with Maus, Pony, and Tasha (the horses) along with their two little dog friends. Tasha was not feeling at all well for most of that time, the vets and I did our best and managed to convince Tasha to stick around long enough for her mother to make a very hard choice when she came home. Tasha had a nasty cancer and had to be put down two days after her mother came home from four weeks in Spain..

If you remember back a few posts, Fitz died two weeks after Tasha. Then the pony died of a nasty colic about three weeks later. Last Saturday my friend who owned Fitz had another horse die. He was eight years old, it took all of five weeks from a snotty nose to not being able to breath and he had to be put down, he had lymphoma. It’s has been all kinds of a rough summer for my equine friends.

I spent some time house sitting with Heni (the corgi) and his friends Helio and Riken (horses) and a very cool kitty by the name of Laurie. The cat follows Henri and I out to clean the barn. Let us not for get the chickens that produce so many eggs I have to drop them off an friend’s houses.

I have a client just south of here with seven horses, three dogs, four cats and so many people coming in and out from the house it’s hard to keep track. She was gone for a total of five weeks this summer. I do love that place, bit of animal heaven not to mention a pool. Gotta love a early morning dip with no one about.

I was able to have some time with Jackson this summer as well. He is a fetching fool, gets on very well on bike rides and his parents have a wine distribution business I was asked to help out with while they were away.  I was able to learn a thing or two about wine, answer the phones, create invoices and take messages.  It was all great fun.

Then…I was off  to Virginia to house sit with a couple if kitties for twelve days in Oct.

Crawford, Colorado

Filed under: Colorado,Photos — she_travels at 7:16 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

One of my mother’s favorite places. She and I took a drive one day.

Yet, another hill with another view.

Needle Rock from a distance. It is said Needle Rock is the center of a once upon a time volcano. If one uses their imagination one can see the outer edges of the volcano.

A bit closer.

Different bit of space along the same area. Then….. in the small town of Hochkiss I found…

Dancing Elephants.

The snow capped mountains in the back round are the San Juans. The pic was taken from my parents back yard. They (with the help of my brother and his family) run a few cows on eighty acres on what is known as “The Western Slope” of Colorado.

Then it was time to go to work in Boulder County. The next several pics are to show just how diverse Colorado is, even just along I-70.

The Grand Mesa just south of Grand Junction.

One sure can tell what gets water….

and what does not.

This was very close to Glenwood Springs. I loved the reds and greens.One can see the burned trees at the base of  the hill.

More reds and greens outside of Vail.

Oops seems I didn’t get any pics of Vail, Copper, or Summit County where I spend six years of my youth. Perhaps next trip through.

Ridgeway, Colorado

Filed under: Colorado,Photos — she_travels at 3:10 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

There is a small valley just outside of Telluride, Colorado with the tiny old time town of Ridgeway. People such as Oprah, Tom Cruise, Dennis Weaver own houses in the area and a huge chunk of Dallas Divide belongs to Ralph Lauren.  My parents and I found this place long before most yet after a little film called True Grit was filmed here. Anywho…pics abound!

There is a story about town…the local pharmacy was once called “The Ridgeway Drug Dealer”. The posh people started moving in and made him change the name. Sad day that was. Nice building though.

Does it not just make your heart sing!

Ralph Lauren’s fence. I think that is Mount Snuffles.

One side of the road…

The other side of the road, looking down the valley toward Ridgeway.

I am told there was a Budweiser commercial filmed here with horses playing soccer.

Place called “Last Dollar Ranch”

I would live in a place like this. Well, in the summer. Winter would be a bit tough, one needs a beach in winter.

Trail Ridge Road

Filed under: Colorado,Educational,Photos — she_travels at 2:21 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

If ever in the Denver area in the summer time one truly must take day trip to Estes Park,  the gateway to Rocky Mountain National Park. Trail Ridge road is a drive to and over the Continental Divide at approximately twelve thousand feet. Tree line here is at 11.5.

The standby flight from Dublin got me back to Colorado about seven days before any clients needed me, I decided to visit my parents. Mom had a boat engine she had to pick up in Denver so we drove back together. The drive from Mom’s place on the west side of Colorado to Denver is about five and a half hours. We had,  both of us, only been over Trail Ridge once each..we decided this would be the perfect time to take the scenic way back to her place. The truly funny bit…with stopping for pics, lunch and just cause, the drive took twelve hours. What a hoot!

I should know the name of this lake…but I do not. I do know I snapped this east of Estes Park. The snow capped mountains in the back are were we are headed.

More of Estes Park.

Artsy me!

I think at this point we are above tree line. Pretty rouged stuff huh?

Sleeping Elk in the tundra above tree line.

See the pond in the middle of the pic?

Mind you this is Summer, June 26th or so. Above tree line, tundra into more mountains. When people speak of the beauty and drama of Colorado..this is what they are talking about.

One of the very few flowers seen up there. The bloom in no bigger than a dime.

Erosion right before your very eyes.

Yes, I climbed yet another hill to get a view for all to see. Er..but this was a stack of rocks I was on top of.


Ahh, yes, I spotted the pool of water (lower right) from the car. It was a bit tricky but we managed to get a good picture and not get killed from oncoming cars.

This is from the other side..green with sheep to spiked snow peaks in the matter of hours.

Oh yeah..I was facing the sheep and green then turned around to this. Opposite side of the road. Crazy!

A bit farther down the road..I think we were going back into another set of mountains. I snapped this cause it reminds me so much of the greens and blues of Roatan. Ok, Greens and blues of Roatan with an added snow capped mountain.

And…..the other side of the street.

Colorado beginings

Filed under: Beginings,Colorado,Photos — she_travels at 1:40 pm on Thursday, November 1, 2007

I will have to get back to the nutties of the Dublin Airport and the flights/connections back to Denver. I feel like I should get the rest of these photos loaded cause the fan on my laptop is going to die any minute. So…on we go.

For those if you who have never traveled across the pond, Jet lag is a very real thing. The transport consisted of two buses, two trains and two planes with me arriving at a friend’s house close to Denver, rock throwing distance from the house I own, occupied by tenants, almost exactly 24 hours after waking  to shower in Dublin. It was a bit strange not going back to the house I had left five months earlier, interestingly enough I got over it in two days. What was I talking about…oh yeah…jet lag. Holy hannah. I seemed fine when I got to the house, had a nice chat with my friend about this and that, was in bed by 10p I think. Woke up at 5am, took a few sunrise pictures.

This one looking west at the Rocky Mountains.

And this, the sunrise from the east.

I remember very little about that day other then feeling pretty good until about 3pm when I decided I was better off going back to bed. I woke again about 8am the next morning to find my friend cleaning the barn. She said “Oh, there  you are? The only way we knew you were still around was your shoes were next the front door. Where were you last night?”

“Asleep, very asleep”

She seemed a bit confused “We had people over last night, had a little BBQ. Did you not hear anything?”

I confessed I had not telling her “I learned to sleep through about anything in the hostels of Ireland. Neat trick that! ”

We chatted about this and that when the subject of a ride came up.  It was either that day or the next we went out for a horse ride.

Those of  you who understand horses know on occasion they can react poorly or not to many things. I decided I should test the sound my camera makes before I had my person on the horse.

Test shot. This is Fitzy Cow’s chest. My friend and I bought this horse together thirteen years ago. He was sixteen this year. She had switched his shoes and he was feeling as good about being out and about in the hills around Boulder as I ever remember his being.  This was not the last time that summer I was able to get him out to play with me but it was the last summer he was out.

Sunday morning about nine weeks ago he was not feeling well.  My friend had several large animal vets out during the course of the day. All of them where in contact with each other and none of them thought the symptoms were serious.

Some time in the afternoon it was decided the horse should take a trip to the teaching hospital in Fort Collins, those guys know all kinds of stuff and have the equipment to find out why Fitz was not himself

My friend and her husband were attempting to load Fitz in the trailer, after some amount of coaxing (by the by – in thirteen years this was the first time he had refused to load) he landed all four feet in the trailer. My friend’s husband was telling me the story two days later “Annette, he had not had all four of his feet in the trailer for ten seconds when he dropped dead. He was dead before he hit the floor of the trailer.”

We talk often of that horse, how he was all ways the stable, easy going, sure whatever you want horse.  Ok he had a quirk or two but the dude was cool!

The following are all photos I took while riding him that day. The Mesa Trail just south of Boulder, Colo if you are interested.


My friend on her horse Meeca.

Trail in into the hills.

You may be able to see the “road” looking thing down there, it is the path we came up. You are looking at Boulder Valley from one of the high points of the Mesa Trail.  Thinking about it now, we have not been out riding since Fitz died.