I flew out of Norfolk, VA on 6/28 back to Colorado, spending a few days with Scott and then Heather, Ellie and Anna and I drove to Steamboat, CO for a week of fun and excitement at the Vista Verde Dude Ranch. Mark and I have had the pleasure of visiting this ranch twice before ourselves and it has always been my dream to actually go there with the entire family. However, having moved on board the boat, Mark decided he really wanted to stay on the boat, and Scott (allergic to horses), decided not to go. So it was a girls trip and what a great time we had. Vista Verde is just a little piece of heaven in Colorado on 600+ acres. I knew the girls would have the time of their lives there. They are already thinking of coming back for a between-college job for the summer (a few years down the road). The girls joined a group of teens for the week and truly bonded. They were the only girls in the group. I think those boys were in heaven! Ellie said when we left that her favorite part of the trip was meeting these boys and now having brothers in her family. How sweet. Oh . . . . and the cowboys! They are pretty special as you can see! Heather enjoyed a week of relaxation, good food, a little wine, meeting new people and lots of laughs. Me, I was in heaven riding a horse again. What an incredible week.
After our departure from Vista Verde, I took the girls to the airport hotel and headed back up to Breckenridge. I spent more time with Scott and friends. Sadly, I attended a funeral mass and memorial of one of our very best friends, Dick Masica. He passed away unexpectedly, but did come to a peaceful end with his family surrounded by him. It was a very somber, yet peaceful event to attend. Although we will miss Dick so very much, everyone who was touched by him will hold him in their heart forever. His wife, Joanne, is one of my dearest friends and I was happy to be able to stay for the service. It was so good to see Joanne and her family. I am sure that Mark and I will be visiting her in Scottsdale at some time.
Now, the Admiral has returned to the boat (that’s me!) and is getting the Captain and Crew in line. I flew into Albany, NY and Mark picked me up there. We then drove to Half Moon Bay in Croton-on-the-Hudson, two hours south by car, where I was back on board. It was great to see Mark and Andy, and of course, my Ming and Pema! The cats are glad I am back (although they were well taken care of and watched over by the boys).
We are now on the Erie Canal heading West.` We will be heading to the Oswego Canal and then North to Lake Ontario where we will begin our journey into Canada. I am looking forward to exploring Canada. The towns along the Erie Canal are interesting, as is the story behind the Erie Canal. Tonight we are in Waterford – Lock #2. Unfortunately it is a dying town. It appears that many of the little businesses are struggling. However, we did find an incredible restaurant – McGreedy’s. The chef is a culinary graduate from the Culinary Institute of America. He is the son of the family owned business. Outstanding, very good food and staff. Mrs. McGreedy makes most of the desserts – the carrot cake is one of the best I have ever tasted (sorry mom) and she makes a Guinness Cake with a whiskey ganache filling. Yumm!
Misadventures – only one to speak of so far. Coming into Waterford to tie up on the municipal wall – of course the engine decides to die. It turned on right away again, thankfully. Nonetheless, a little nerve racking. Mark does not know why this happened and all seems to be OK for now. We will see if we have any further problems. Hopefully not.