Saturday, April 27, 2013

Home Again

Made it through two days of windy, but at least it brought the heat with us, as promised. Already miss the mountains and the carefreeness of being on vacation. Later this morning I clerk an auction, and Monday is set up with a very early run. Effectively it means losing three hours rather than just the two we hit crossing time zones.

The dogs' reunion went smoothly, the unpacking was accomplished by others, the tangelos were welcomed and Paul instantly saw the benefits of having bits of peel frozen in hopes of a peach crop this summer/fall to make marmalade.

We froze in Raton, NM. Motel 6 has this "green" policy. The heat in our room had been turned off and it was already below freezing with snow on the ground when we arrived. I quickly turned it on, but what came sweetly from the ceiling fan was only moderately warm even with settings on high. Steve was fine. He's a furnace at night. What makes summers a bit uncomfortable lying next to him was what finally stopped my shivering when I crawled in with him (and Fred) after an hour of trying my tiny bed. Crowded, sure, but finally, sleep! By morning the air in the room was almost comfortable, and the floor was still cold! With everything still set high, I'd expected needing to turn it down mid-night.

Won't be staying there again.

Fortunately my car heats up fast. Morning outside temp was 18. As we climbed over the pass and into Colorado, the low clouds suddenly cleared and we had full sunshine. Hoarfrost and later ice covered tree branches, weeds, even yuccas, and they were spectacular with the rising sun behind them. Of course I stopped for pictures. The first town, with a high clear view of Spanish Peaks on the other side, had a convenient frontage road higher than the freeway and with no early morning traffic, making it possible to take some time with the camera shooting in both directions.

Greeley was what Steve called a closure. Last time we'd been through, he was both shocked and disappointed at how much it had grown and changed. This time we drove from childhood location to location, with him taking pictures of homes, schools, and other buildings as they are now. The house he grew up in was now a business, and he was invited inside for a tour. A park he played at had some changes, but the central pond still had its island, this time occupied by pelicans and cormorants, so even I had some fun with the camera. We met with cousins of his who took us out to dinner after a friendly argument on which Mexican restaurant served the right kind of food. The motel - different chain - was expensive, but hey, the heat worked!

Until our actual homecoming, everything after that was flat: geographically and emotionally. We took turns driving and sleeping the first day. My wrists got sore from fighting the crosswinds. Yesterday when we had turned north I marveled at how our southern wind became a western wind just in time to be a nuisance on that leg of the drive as well. And as expected, gas prices greeting us were the highest in Minnesota from the whole trip.

Unpacked, and after a good night's sleep, everything's hunky-dory. Almost. One Grrrrrrrrrrr!

While on the trip, my credit union decided I had to update my security settings so nobody else could log into my account. New password, even a picture that was my selection of dozens of pretty mundane and even crappy ones, but ones they picked to chose from.  I dutifully went through it all, then sent myself an email to remind me for the first few times what the changes were. This morning I tried to log in, check my balance.

"Tried" being the operative word. The picture that came up was not my picture. The password was declared invalid. There will be nobody answering the phones at the credit union to deal with this until Monday. By then I'll be on the road, no laptop, no wi-fi, no fix. So yes:


Vacation is officially over.

But hey, right outside the dining window, the hedge of viburnum cranberries is full of hungry migrating cedar waxwings.

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