It wasn’t a red moon I was seeing as I drove to my hotel. It was the sun. With a smokey haze blurring it. Most will not find this hard to believe but it was not the best time for me to visit Colorado. Apparently, the state is kind of on fire. There is a massive blaze to the north, shutting down the main corridors east-west through the state that is doubling in size everyday. Then, there is another one just starting.

Walking outside, depending on the way the wind is drifting, can be like walking out into a bark yard with a bonfire going. Waking up, residents can find there property covered in ash. It is an especially hard time for business owners as they are just starting to reopen with Covid regulations and then find there tourist routes closed down as well.

The day began at the Garden of the Gods, a city park in Colorado Springs. It’s just a gorgeous little loop through the park with high cliffs and walking trails. It was a weekend when I got there so the crowds were large. I stayed in my car for the most part. There is a video of the drive but I still seem to be experience technical difficulties and can’t load it as yet–I’m working on it.

The fires forced me to take a meandering southern route to my next destination to see an old friend in Snowmass, right outside of Aspen. The drive? Just…WOW. I love to drive, and the 6 1/2 hours I spent making my way to Snowmass was just plain epic. Canyons and valleys and switchbacks. Up mountains and then down mountains. Rivers and lakes. Tiny towns spring out of nowhere and then signs saying “no gas or food for x miles.”

–there is a video of that as well which I am having issues with. I recorded most of the drive and the pictures just can’t do it justice–

Waiting for me in Snowmass was Ben, one of my closest friends from the University of Miami. He moved out here in 2000 and has been inviting me ever since. I finally made it. He even bitched at me that it was wasn’t the best time to visit but? It just figures: the story of my life.

We spent the evening just talking and catching up. The smoke wasn’t that bad but the chill creeping up was refreshing after a few weeks in 100 degree heat. Waking up, it was 59 degrees and I had to dig a hoodie and my slippers out of the car. Then we drug his kids down to the river. It heats up and the chilly waters were refreshing.

I’m going to see if I can get those pictures uploaded again. Third time is the charm? Traveling, writing, moving, packing, unpacking and all that goes with it tells me I should have planned a little better but that, too, is the story of my life. I’m stuck in a “winging it” stage and that is going to have to be okay for now.

I’m getting frustrated with the entire technology thing. I’m going to put an ad for a technical advisor soon, a graphics person that I can just send everything to and let them deal with this mess. I gotta drive.