Thursday, June 30, 2005

Wednesday, June 29, 2005


We're one mile south of the client, a private school, and one half mile
north of the racquetball courts. Yeah. We're in the right spot.

Friendly people there at the racquetball courts. The guys playing didn't
just say hi, they came out of the court to introduce themselves and welcome

Then they kicked my ass.


Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Monday, June 27, 2005


Sunday, another sub-200 mile day from Lathrop to Taos. A high desert RV
park right on the south edge of town. We'll be here for a week. I think
we're going to like it here a lot. I wonder if they have a racquetball
court here.

Sunday, June 26, 2005


Friday, a sub-200 mile day from Denver to Lathrop State Park outside
Walsenburg. Saturday we got spinning rods and lures out, and the boats in
the water early for some kayak fishing. Some trolling. Some drifting off
the bank, casting in against the cover and teasing out the fish. It was a
nice paddle. As a fish to fish ratio, Judy caught infinitely more bass than
I did. Got off the water by noon just as the thunderstorms came in.

Another life on the road motorhome lesson. The thunderstorms pass. The
weather gets perfect, settling down for the night at dusk. We put the boats
back in the water for some more bass fishing. The lesson? Never go back
out on the lake bass fishing while the weather is perfect and calm, while
the awning is still out on the motorhome.

Surprise thunder windstorm right at dark. Didn't see that one coming.
Lightning and a quick exit from the lake. We just barely got the kayaks
back on top of the Jeep in the burst of wind that accompanied the sudden
rain. By the time we drove the five minutes back to the motorhome, the wind
had already disassembled the awning. It didn't bend or break any of the
apparatus, it just took it apart. The fabric was undamaged. Even in the
wind, we got the awning retracted enough to make it through the night.

The next day, we got it all back together, save one piece. I remember the
same thing happened to me when I rebuilt the vacuum cleaner. I had one
piece left over. This time, however, I know where the piece goes, I just
don't have the right tool, or the brute force of the wind, to put it back
where it belongs. Even without that last piece, it folded up nicely like
it's supposed to. We'll just leave it folded until we can have someone
finish the fix for us.

Saturday, June 25, 2005


Don't you hate it when the guy with the camera waits and waits so long to
take your picture that you finally blink, right when he snaps it?


Here he is, looking his dapper best.


Lathrop State Park.


Can you spot the dog in this picture?

Thursday, June 23, 2005


We've left Louisville. Relocated to Chatfield. Hot weather, thunderstorms,
and meadowlarks.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


Granddaughter Taylor accomplished something, the Newberry Challenge. I had
never heard of it. 1922 was the first year of the Newberry Award, given to
the outstanding children's book of the year. It has continued every year
since, for 84 years. 84 books. The Newberry Challenge is to read every one
of those books. Taylor just finished. There is a prize for finishing.
Want to guess what the prize is?

That's right! A free book!


A stationary storm over Colorado Springs tonight. Shoulder deep hail and
water. The fire department made thirty water rescues.... on city streets.


The Louisville camp.


Life in the driveway. Brother Bill wonders if it is strange staying in our
driveway while someone else is living in the house. Know what's strange
about it? It doesn't seem strange.

It's nice being back at the house and in the neighborhood. We get to visit
with our friends. We get to watch the new regional park across the street
taking shape. We and our renter Dan are doing the "Mi Casa, Su Casa" thing.
We're dry camping outside, so we use the laundry in the house. We use the
house shower. We're perfectly happy living in our house in the driveway.

Saturday, June 18, 2005


We continue learning the lessons of life on the road. This lesson: don't do
things out of order, or at a forced pace. Of course we already know this,
we just learned it again.

This time, after three days at the RV repair shop, we were anxious to leave.
They knew we were anxious to leave and were trying to help. They drove the
motorhome out front, with the tow car right behind. The guy in the tow car
was trying to line it up so he could hook it up. He was unfamiliar with the
gear, so it wasn't going all that well. In fact, his efforts to help were
hindering, so I got him to just shut everything off and go away. I didn't
notice that when he got out of the Jeep, he pulled on the emergency brake.
We were parked on a level parking lot and one side of the tow gear was
already hooked up. The Jeep wasn't going to go anywhere. We never pull the
emergency brake on, so I didn't even think to look.

I methodically went through the remainder of the hookup ritual and off we
went. Our discovery? With the Bounder, you can tow a Jeep, even if the
emergency brake is on. In fact, you can tow it at seventy-five miles an
hour down the freeway for forty miles without knowing that the emergency
brake is on. Judy drove behind me in the Honda. Apparently the emergency
brake wasn't all the way on. The wheels were turning. There was no smoke.
There was an awful sound when we stopped, however.

Now the rear brakes of the Jeep need some work. Oh well.

Life on the road. Don't tow with the emergency brake on.

Friday, June 17, 2005


Seriously good news.

Been to the doctor. Done all the tests. The heart scan six months ago
described my condition as "advanced coronary heart disease. They put me in
the 90th percentile; meaning only 10 percent of American males my age had
hearts in worse condition than mine. I think I reported it as 80th
percentile earlier, but I looked at the results again, and it's 90th
percentile. That sounds pretty crummy.

Well, the good news is, I did the Thallium Treadmill Torture Test again, to
define function, and the results are absolutely unqualified. I have full
function with no flow restrictions. My heart goes to the calculated maximum
of 160 and I can hold it there for the three minutes they need to do their
tests. I have no idea how they can describe my arteriosclerosis as so
severe, yet there is no impairment of the flexibility and flow.

No matter.

Judy expressed her concern that the first symptom of heart disease is often
sudden death. They assured her that I didn't fall in that category at all.
When it is time for me to have symptoms, it will most likely be exercise
induced chest pain. If I will stop exercising when that happens and go see
a doctor, they'll just find the restriction, put in a stent to restore the
flow, and send me on my way. How cool is that???? I'll take that over a
trip to the morgue every time!!!!

And there is more. Progress on the medication front. I am such a
medication weenie that I struggle with everything. Several years ago, I
gave up taking blood pressure medicine and managed to get my blood pressure
down without medication. I haven't had a blood pressure pill in a couple
years. That left me with a cholesterol issue still to deal with. Again,
the medication weenie couldn't deal with the prescription drugs and gave up
on them. I looked for every possible food to eat that might lower
cholesterol and put them into my diet. I found some herbal supplements from
New Zealand, started fish oil and garlic tablets, put almonds back in my
diet, eat the occasional piece of dark chocolate, and drink an occasional
glass of red wine, or drink a little grape juice with dinner.

I eliminated ice cream, cheese, and hamburger meat. I had already
eliminated most bread.

Cholesterol dropped from 240 to 204. Exercise keeps the HDL strong. My
risk ratios have dropped out of the danger range. Unmedicated. No energy

It's all good.

Thursday, June 16, 2005


From: Steve Taylor []
Sent: Thursday, June 16, 2005 10:17 PM
To: Bill Taylor (E-mail); David Taylor (E-mail); Tom Taylor (E-mail)
Subject: Louisville

Good news!

The annual motorhome service includes tire rotation. It's not a small
project to rotate these tires. Each one comes off, gets rebalanced, then
put back in a new place. We had to take it to the truck tire shop to get it
done. While we were there, talking about truck tires, I expressed my
trepidation about the prospect of replacing these things. Car tires are
expensive. Motorhome tires are more. Big motorhome tires have to be more
than that. I have never actually asked for a number.

So I still don't know what it will cost to replace six tires, but I asked
when I should expect to have to do it. That's the good news! He said we
should get at least one hundred twenty thousand miles off this set! Wow.
It'll be years and years before we have to deal with that.


Bad news!

Ever since we got the Bounder, we've been wondering if there is any other
rig we'd rather have, anything else to lust after. We keep looking at other
motorhomes and they just don't feel the same. Price seems to matter. The
more expensive they are, the less they are like the home we want. Well, bad
news. We found the next one. It's a Beaver, Monterey, Laguna, quad slide.
A four-season motorhome with extra insulation in the floors and slides, so
it would be more comfortable to work in all winter long. Hot water and
interior heat is provided by a hydro-hot system. Unlimited hot water, you
can't run it out. Fluid interior heating instead of forced air, barely any
fan noise at all, driven by diesel generated heat. A thirty-five gallon
propane tank that is only used for the refrigerator and stovetop. Might
have to fill that up once or twice a year. Heavier coach, more power, more
sophisticated suspension, nicer furnishings, wide screen LCD TV, surround
sound, digital readouts for all engine functions and tanks.


The Beaver Coach link.

The Monterey Laguna IV.


We spent a week in Golden, a week at Chatfield, then moved to the north
side. We spent Sunday night parked next to the RV repair shop in Longmont
so they could have the Bounder first thing Monday morning to get the annual
service done. Of course there were a few more things we wanted them to look
at while we were there. It took more than a day to get it all done. In
fact it took three days for them to almost get everything done and a couple
new unsolved problems to pop up. Nothing major. Nothing serious. Three
days was enough so we moved on.

Now we're back in Louisville, parked in the driveway of the house. First
time we've done this since we left last year.

Sunday, June 12, 2005


Outside the motorhome on the weekend, warm weather, sitting in the lawn
chairs under the awning. Watching the scale model planes circling,
climbing, and diving through the sky. They are so realistic. They do
everything a real airplane can do. How nice they have a model airpark right
here so anyone can fly their plane any time of the day for as long as they
want. These airplanes can do everything a real airplane can do. Except go

They go around and around and around. Droning. Up and down. And around.
Then I start to think maybe there should be more. Maybe if all the airplane
flyers have their own scale model airpark, I should get to have some scale
model artillery. That would add to the realism, wouldn't it? You go around
and around too many times and you find yourself dodging anti-aircraft fire.
Yes. Yes. I'm sure the airplane flyers would appreciate the realism a
little flak would bring to their lives.

Then I hear the jet. I've seen it before. In the midst of all these
propeller driven piston engine planes moaning around the sky, there is a jet
plane. It's a rather large delta wing scale model fighter jet. It makes a
distinctive whooshing sound.

I hear the jet, but I don't see it. I can't see the ground at the airpark,
I can only see and hear the planes flying above it. I hear the jet. It is
so fast, I should see it by now, but I don't. Then I do. It rises slowly
above the trees, stationary in the sky. It's not a delta wing fighter jet!
It's a jet powered helicopter! How cool is that. I've wanted a helicopter
since I was a teenager. We definitely need an exemption for helicopters.
Penalty points assessed if you shoot down a helicopter.

Saturday, June 11, 2005


A good day. Local racquetball tournament with a team from Louisville
participating, not far from here. In Aurora. Got to watch and cheer and
commiserate. A fun time with friends.

After that, a visit with Matt, Kari, and Alex. What a character, that Alex.
Talking a mile a minute now.

After that, an AV upgrade in the Bounder. Replaced the DVD player and the
VCR that wouldn't record, with a combo DVD/VCR unit that will record both
VCR and DVD. An equipment upgrade, as well as one less piece of equipment
in the cabinet.

Blue-sky morning. Rainy afternoon. A good day.


This morning's ballonrise.


I love this picture. I didn't take it, the support crew did. Stephanie and
friends headed out to the White Rim Road. I think they ended up running
thirty miles of it.

Thursday, June 9, 2005


The many moods of the red tailed hawk.


We had a close encounter with a prairie dog. He didn't pay much attention
to us. He was busy having a close encounter with a red-tailed hawk. Here
he is, cruising down the walking path, when the bird swoops in from our
left. We thought we were going to have a Wild Kingdom moment, but the hawk
didn't act like we expected, he was young and didn't know what to do for
sure. The prairie dog didn't act like we expected either. He ran until the
hawk got close, but then instead of ducking down at the last moment, he
stood up to fend the hawk off with his paws. It looked like he was trying
to punch the hawk, box him. The hawk was dissuaded enough that he diverted
and landed next to the prairie dog on the path.

So we had a prairie dog and a hawk standing next to each other, the dog
threatening the hawk with his fists whenever he got too close. The hawk,
helpless, had no momentum. I don't think a hawk can just walk up next to
its prey and stab it with a talon. He looked away. The prairie dog left.
Hawk flew up into a tree.

We didn't get a picture of the prairie dog. We did get one of the hawk.

Tuesday, June 7, 2005


Know those maps with the stick-on states you can put on the outside of your
RV? You get to stick a new state on everytime you go somewhere new. We
don't have one on the outside of our motorhome, but that doesn't mean we
don't have one. I love maps, and maps with pins stuck in them, and maps
with stick-on states.

Ours goes on a board we stash in a cabinet. We bring it out whenever we
want to look at it, or plan a new trip, or add a new state. The last state
we added was Michigan, almost two years ago. We may have to try to go
somewhere new before the end of the year.

Let's see. Which way should we go?

No, we haven't had the motorhome to Maui. We just liked Maui so much we
pasted that one on too.

Monday, June 6, 2005


We woke to the strobe light torture, the one you get when you drive off into
the sun at dawn on a clear day and the terrain is flat and there are tall
pines lining the road. It happens to us every time we drive a particular
stretch through Louisiana. Flash, flash, flash.

It happened to us this morning without driving at all. Our bedroom window
faces east. We're camped on the high plains. We knew the sun would come up
and start the baking process at about five am, so we pulled the bedroom
window awning out the night before to protect us. This morning there was a
breeze. There was an unobstructed low sun, a breeze, and a slightly
flapping awning. Another recipe for the strobe light torture. Flash,
flash, flash.

Sunday, June 5, 2005



Maybe it's time for another haircut.


Another day on the road. A twenty-two mile day, to be exact. We moved from
Dakota Ridge in Golden to Chatfield State Park in Littleton. We'll stay
here for a week.