The characters you meet along the way…

Since June 14th, I have been wandering around CO.  A lot of people have asked me why and there are a few reasons.

  1. Ryan and I committed to presenting on Australia at Expedition Colorado.  Since Ryan was unable to attend due to work, that left me.
  2. I was tasked with checking in with our mechanic to make sure our shipment of parts made it to the shop and that we were all on the same page with what work was to be done and how long it was going to take.
  3. I was to explore CO and see if it was a place where we wanted to land after our travels.

Well, here I am in a foreign state meeting all kinds of people and a few really stick out in my mind. Some left lasting impressions on me.

There was the dad who camped next to me above Georgetown who went camping with his two girls for father’s day.  He introduced himself and said, “If you need anything, please don’t hesitate to ask.”

There was “K” who has come to Colorado Springs from Texas every year for the past 13 years to be an official for the Pikes Peak Race.  He proceeded to show me pictures of his horses, talk about the race and tell me that I should have a large caliber revolver for bears since I was a woman and traveling alone.  He told me to only shoot 5 shots and save the 6th for myself if things went sideways. Yikes! He was super excited that I was a fellow HAM radio operator and pulled out a bunch of handy talkies to show me.

There was another neighbor at the same campground who was intrigued by all the additions on the LX450.  He just bought a Tacoma and was looking forward to adding things to it.  After chatting for a bit, he invited me  to join him on a trail rehab project the following week.

There was the super polite little redhead boy at the Fairgrounds in Boulder.

There was the 30 something Indian man and his mother in full traditional dress. I wondered why they had chosen the site directly across from me the night before when there were plenty of open sites.  The following morning I found out that it was her first time camping and that she felt safer being close to another person.

There was a mother of 3, who was a former Russian linguist for the NSA who was relocating to CO to allow her children to be closer to family.  She and I had a lot of similar thoughts on people and life in general.

Then there was “I”, the owner of the campground I am presently staying at.  She has a passion for art, science and history.  She lives and works on her family Ranch / Campground and works very long days, 7 days a week.  The excitement in her voice and the twinkle in her eyes when she is discussing a topic makes me smile. She shared pictures of her painting with me and she is a talented artist.

Her brother was also a character.  I met him after he drove up in his flatbed pickup and proclaimed, “That sure was a hillbilly entrance.  I left my cup of coffee on the back and it still has 1/2 a cup of coffee in it.” He was hard of hearing and full of jokes and knowledge.  He and his granddaughter have a bond that is so lovely to see.  He has been teaching her all kinds of skills since she was 3 years old.  How many 8 year olds do you know that know how to weld and can saddle and ride a horse?  They are lucky to have each other!

Wow, CO has been interesting.  I have met a lot of new people, caught up with an old classmate from High School, visited with co-workers from all stages of my career and old friends.

I wonder what the next few weeks will bring…

(Please excuse my unmentionables, it’s just part of the camping experience…)

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