Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Hummingbird Haven

Our summer in Colorado has just been humming along, especially since we finally got a couple of hummingbird feeders hanging on our awning. Wow, such entertainment. They really swarm in the mornings & evenings. We have to take them inside at night tho cause the bears will get into them to drink the sugar water.

I had a shock this weekend working at the Grill — a gentleman informed me that he followed my blog! I was so excited I forgot to ask his name (or don’t remember if he told me), but this is a special “hi & thanks for stopping by” to him. He reminded me I really needed to post something here even tho there’s not much newsworthy happening, so here’s an update.

We’ve been having frequent rainstorms the past month (referred to as the monsoon season in Western states). In deed, July & August in Missouri are usually the time for the hottest temps with little rain so landscapes are turning brown & dry by now, although that’s definitely not happening this particular summer. This little part of Poudre Canyon is known as a banana belt since it’s usually a tad warmer & drier here than at other parts of the Canyon. We’ve watched with much anticipation as clouds build to the west, becoming black & blue & angry above us, only to have them continue traveling east down the Canyon toward Ft Collins before finally letting loose with a deluge, including hail sometimes, while we never get enough drops to even touch each other. In fact, last summer’s wildfires have caused numerous (just about weekly) mudslides on the Canyon Highway below us, stopping traffic for several hours while the road is cleared.

However, we do get to see rainbows often, even double rainbows frequently, looking east down the Canyon as the rains pour down there.

The only other thing happening in the past month is that I turned my left ankle a couple of weeks ago. I used to trip over a shadow every few years, but it’s been nearly 20 years since I did this. I sure haven’t recovered as quickly as I used to. Geez, I’m getting tired of limping around, but thankfully one dose of ibuprofen in the morning allowed me to function almost normally all day at work.

We’ve been scouting out various restaurants in Ft Collins (compliments of the tips from the Grill) every week when we make our Wal-Mart run. Tried the usual KFC, Pizza Hut, & Culver’s, but also a local Mexican restaurant & a Japanese/Korean place that were good. Our only disappointment was a fairly expensive meal at one of the many brew pubs. I didn’t like the beer, the sandwich, nor the cole slaw even. I’m not a foodie (you may have noticed I seldom mention food here) & I’m pretty careful about what I order, so I was really annoyed about that one meal. Fort Collins is a gorgeous little town tho with many, many trees — everywhere! You can barely see the strip malls for all the trees, both along the streets as well as in the parking lots. And then there’s the distant Rockies to the west. Flat (like most of Texas) but landscaped with lots of flowers too. Getting around is pretty easy. Makes a good break in our week.

Working at the Grill is fairly easy for me since I have a stool to rest on, even while taking orders & money if needed. But Jeff has to stand, sometimes for hours on end, slaving over the hot grill, & it makes him grumpy! Since we’re open from 10am until 6pm, & get slammed with continuous orders frequently, I’m going to start training to relieve him at the grill while he rests on my stool taking orders & giving me instructions. I can but never have enjoyed cooking, often choosing to just go hungry rather than go to the trouble of fixing something (often nothing even sounds good), so actually cooking will be a totally new experience for me. Even if I can cover for him while he takes a half-hour break every few hours should go a long way in keeping his legs & feet from hurting so badly.

Although we’re totally loving being in Colorado this summer, I’ve been surprised to notice an occasional, weird feeling of homesickness (for lack of a better description). I miss the Ozark Mountains, but definitely not the heat & humidity of summer. I think I’m just developing hitch itch. It occurred to me that some people may be reluctant to full time because they’re intimidated by unfamiliar places or having no sense of “home”. This lifestyle of constantly having new places & new faces definitely requires an adventurous nature to make the unfamiliar comfortable. I have a vague feeling of searching for a location to call home some day, but I can’t describe strongly enough how I enjoy NOT having the stress & responsibility of mowing, cleaning gutters, scrapping snow, or maintaining a S&B structure. And living in a small space (where the weather outside is comfortable & fits our clothes) is actually easier than traveling in an even smaller space (a vehicle) for very many days in a row. New sites & experiences are what keeps this lifestyle exciting (for the most part) & only occasionally challenging.

See, our full-timing life isn’t always exciting. . .or that much different (easier tho) than living large in a regular house! The afternoon rains are moving in & the temp is dropping — time for a siesta.

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