My longest BFF lives in Denver and of course with us being this close I had to go spend some time with her. Fred needed to get his six month check up at the VA anyway and this gave me a great excuse. We scheduled our trip at a time in which we were not on the schedule for any volunteer work and took our four days in Denver. Well at least I took all four days, Fred surprised one of his girl scouts from days long ago and flew to Seattle for her wedding – but more about that later.
Our trip to Denver took us through the Black Canyon of the Gunnison into the area know as the Curecanti National Recreation Area. This route is Colorado Scenic Highway 92 and is really spectacular. It takes through many great overlooks in the Black Canyon, but the highlight was the Blue Mesa Reservoir. There is lots of hiking trails, camping areas and just a place to stop and picnic as you drive through. We also saw a lot of wildlife along the way and during hunting season there are places that you are allowed to hunt in.
On the way there we went south so that we could go to Colorado Springs to visit with some dear friends, Rick and Pat Ratzlaff. They were the first couple we started our volunteering with a couple of years ago. They are now set up in Colorado Springs, but will start traveling again this next year. It was great stopping and having lunch with them . .
Then back on the road to Denver . . . It was great to get to Gaylord and Kaila as I had not seen her in a couple of years. Oh I forgot to say, it was my birthday so we went to dinner and she had to have a cake for me.
I stated earlier, Fred had to go to VA for his six month check up and so Kaila’s daughter is a surgical nurse with the VA so she cleared the way for him. On a good note, he got the test completed that they needed and we heard back from the doctor in Houston that all was well and they would see him for his year check up in December in Houston!!!! So he made the trip to Seattle for his girl scout’s wedding without her knowing he was coming. Her mother and Fred had been in contact with each other and they set up the surprise for her. Fred and his ex were leaders for their daughters’ girl scout troop and they have stayed in contact with a number of the scouts through the years (plus thanks to Facebook). Two other girls were there also and none of them had any idea that Fred was coming so it was a great trip and wonderful surprise for them.
While he was gone I had a wonderful time with Kaila doing “girl” things, nail shop, shopping, movie and just talking all night long. It was so great to be with her and just be myself and just talk about anything and everything. When Fred got back to town her entire family and us all went to dinner and just had a great time. Kaila is my “real” sister and a friend that is always there for me. We figured out that we had been friends for about 35 years and we have been through a lot together. It is really wonderful to have a sister when you don’t have one.
Next morning we started our trip back; this time we took I-70 back to see what that was like; wow what a great drive in its own right. The mountain views were great just before we hit the Eisenhower Tunnel, we came upon a race car being towed and Fred was excited as it was No. 24 – Jeff Gordon. There was a race in California so we guess they were on their way there.
Then the mountains as you came out were just neat. We traveled on and decided to stop and have lunch in Vail so we could see what it was like. We could see why it is know for great skiing.
The rest of the drive to Grand Junction was along the Colorado River and was really really neat. The river was high and was flowing fast. It is amazing to me how the road was built along the edge of the mountains and along the river. Just beautiful . . .
We really enjoyed our trip to Denver and seeing more of Colorado. I must say it is a beautiful state and we are looking forward to exploring more.