Sunday, July 24, 2016

Day 64 - Just Living without a Plan in Boulder, CO

Sunday, July 24, 2016

I didn't sleep well again.  It was probably due to the sweets and alcohol at the evening potluck.

I stayed up late and worked on the day's journal.  Then I was too wired to sleep until the morning.

When I got up I didn't get dressed right away or wash up or anything.... I made coffee. 

I asked George what he wanted for breakfast, oatmeal or eggs.  "Eggs," he said.

Now making eggs and toast in our mini kitchen is a lesson in timing and coordination.


I need to use the toaster-oven to make toast.

 I need to use the hot plate to make the eggs...

 But I can't do both at the same time.

I got it done, though.  George was satisfied. 

I worked on checking our accounts, responding to email, drafting an email for the bike group back home.

I get lovely emails from friends supporting us on our jouney.  One friend wrote she was looking forward to our return so we could ride and eat together.  She sent hugs.

Another friend who is becoming a caretaker for her husband with Alzheimer's wrote (I have changed the names to protect their identity),

"You are my hero!
 
Am following your travels and look forward to it each day.  You give me hope for the "right now" and an insight into what's next.  Bob hasn't had any serious issues with incontinence except when he had the UTI.  For that I am grateful.  
 
I have a hard time dealing with the lack of communication as he doesn't remember from morning to afternoon what took place.  Being together more causes me to think up activities that we can do together.  Our daytime dates consist of grocery shopping, Wal-Mart, and Culvers.  Sometimes we drive to the dump with yard waste.  It is a different life.  
 
I still go to exercise and  line dancing during the week.  I need the social aspects of this too.  Miss having someone to walk with.  It's a two mile hike around our lake so sometimes I take my phone and call one of the kids, but I usually go early so not everyone is available.  

You and George are fortunate in that you enjoy the same things.  I am thankful that at this stage Bob is agreeable to do most anything I come up with but I do have to watch out for things that would tire him as then he doesn't do well.  He turned 80 on July 7th.  
 
He is doing pretty good considering his age and lack of physical exercise other than his beloved fishing.  Doesn't do much of that anymore either and has a terrible time cleaning them.  He did cook our steaks on the grill and did a good job.  That too had gotten to be too difficult.  I see, as you do, that some days are better than others. 
 
Just wanted you to know that my thoughts are with you both and I admire what you are doing.  We have a grandson who just got married, honeymooning in Norway, but returning to Denver where he lives now.  He used to live in Boulder.  Both he and his wife love to hike and camp and bike.   
 
I could give you contact info if you're near there and are interested.
 
Take care and be safe.  Thanks for sharing this journey."
 
 


George surfed Facebook and news on his ipad and then he came and just sat watching me work. 

ARG!  I feel rushed.  I feel like I should be doing something with him.  I feel I have to plan an activity.  I need to be in two places at once!
 
 I was trying to see what there was to do in the area and the meetup activities too.  Some I had already signed up for, but they were all noted on different pieces of paper.  Finally I remembered the calendar I had picked up from the printer in Idaho. 



I decide I will work on planning our week later.  We needed to get out an enjoy the day.  But first we had to eat because it was already almost noon.

So I made taco salads with the left-over chili and veggies.

Then we slathered on the sun screen and pulled our bikes out for a ride.


I didn't know where we were going.  I figured we would just follow the bike routes and bike lanes and bike paths.  And when we had about 20 miles in I would pull out my ipad and map our way back home. 

Easy Peezy!  No plan, just go.

We are staying in a quiet neighborhood and many of the neighbors have landscaped in native plants so there is little or no watering required.





We went through neighborhoods where watering was the norm.



I was following signs to Valmont City Park.  But somewhere along the way the signs stopped.  I asked a guy on a bike how to get there and he said he was going there and led the way.  I had missed a turn.

At one point he stopped and tried to verbally give me directions.... too many obscure turns. 

Again he said, "I'll take you there."



Valmont City Park it turns out, is a dog park and a dirt-bike park.  So there are lots of trails of varying ability with little hills to jump over curves to take. 

 There are a LOT of dogs in the Boulder area.  They seem mostly to be well-behaved.  And there are many dog parks.

 The park had a bike repair station.



I was stopping at play grounds and doing bench dips or push ups.  George and I climbed up this rope ladder and tried to do some modified pull ups.  Then the kids showed up, so we got down and let them have it.

I told George, "We need to have an adult play ground in our neighborhood."

 I took a video of some boys about 10 - 14 riding over the hills and jumping quite high.  But the video wasn't there later.  I do have to take the time to go through the instruction manual for this new camera.


Off we went in search of other trails and roads and parks.


Below is a sample of the many signs on the bike trail system in the Boulder area.


We saw a plane pulling a glider.




When I saw this little figure on a trail information kiosk, I had to turn around and take a picture.  As I was taking this picture a glider went right above the treetops over our heads.

 "Did you see that?" I asked George.  He smiled and nodded.




Sometimes when you travel without knowing the area and without a plan... you come to dead ends...

 And things can get hairy...


I asked George if he was getting hungry.  I was.  It was only about 3:30.  

He said, "Yes."

I pulled out my ipad and tried to find a restaurant open on Sunday afternoon.

 The closest one was a brewing company. 




We could have taken a factory tour, but we were hungry.  The restaurant had a one-hour wait.  So we moved on. 

I saw a hospital and I remembered they have cafeterias and they are usually affordable.... so we went into the hospital.  The cafeteria was closed.

So I studied the map and saw an Italian restaurant 15 minutes away by bike.  So we went there.  It was closed, it was in a strip-mall.  And nearby was a grocery store.

"Lets just get pasta and sauce and go home and make it.  That ok with you?"  I asked.

"That's a good idea," said George. 

We got broccoli and a honey dew melon too. 


 I think this was our first time at a King Soopers.


My Ipad ran out of power.  Fortunately we had crossed over a road that goes near our "home".  I knew if I went down Foot Hills Road I would come to the bike trail overpass by our house.

But, dang, when we reached the overpass there were big walls up between us and the path.  So we had to go an extra 4 blocks.  No big deal.

Dinner was good.  I threw in the pasta and the broccoli in the same pot.  And then dumped them in a draining bowl and put the sauce in the hot pot.  It heated up quickly.

George liked it.  He rinsed his spoon and asked where to put it.  I said, "Let's have you do all the dishes, not just your spoon."  I filled the serving bowl with soapy water and I stacked all the dirty dishes on the tiny counter space next to the sink.

He washed and rinsed and placed in a drying rack.  I dried and placed the clean dishes on the table until he was done and I could put them in the cabinet above his head.  It worked!  I just needed to re-train him on how to do the dishes.

This happened at home too.  He would just walk up to the sink and rinse a dish, instead of preparing the area by stacking the dirty dishes in one area and then filling a container with soapy water.  Sometimes I show him how and it sticks for a long time before he has a day when he just walks up to the sink and rinses one or two things. 

After dinner we went for a walk to the store about four blocks away.




I wanted to get postcards.  On the way I thought that he used to draw a character when he was in the Navy.  I asked George if he remembered how to do it and he did.

I said he could color the post cards himself instead of us sending a picture.

So we found some note-cards that will work.

Outside one of the stores were these brilliant blue flowers.  I thought they must be fake.  But the closer I looked...  Then I touched them and they were very real, soft petals.




Years ago George had told me that the side-walks and curbs are done different in Colorado.  The sidewalk is right next to the street.  He said when the snow plow goes by it heaps the snow and ice onto the sidewalk.  He remembers as a teenager it was very tough shoveling the walk.


Back at our "home" I pulled out the colored pencils we had packed on the trip.  George colored four cards before he got tired of it and went to watch a movie on his ipad.



I won't show the cards just yet.  It will be a surprise for the recipients!

Tomorrow, I do have a plan!  We will drive up to Estes Park and then down to Fort Collins to Rocky Mountain Recumbent Bike shop.  And we will probably stop in Loveland at the Stone shop we learned about last night.  But we have to get it all done before 6 because there is a meetup in Longmont again... music music music...

Too much for one day?  We will go with the flow...

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