Monday, October 02, 2006

Back to Colorado

It doesn't matter what the signs at the border say. We know we are back home in Colorado when we see the mountains. Today, just before we reached Limon, we could look into the haze and clouds on the horizon and see a mountain--Pikes Peak. That means we are home.
Every year we come to the time when the travels are ending and we're going back to the house in Colorado. Years ago, when that time came at the end of one month's travel, we were very sad. Today, when we are out six to seven months a year, we're ready, even glad. We will be closer to family, able to do many of the things we can't do in the RV--internet genealogy research, being part of a local church, volunteering at the Colorado Historical Society, model railroading, building doll houses, sewing, putting dishes in the dishwasher.
When it's time to head for Colorado, our travels have a different focus. We don't explore the local community or spend as much time appreciating nature. This year we stayed at the same campground twice--Shady Lakes Corps of Engineers park on the Mississippi River. When we were there in June, we celebrated watching barges go up and down the river and spent time watching the birds. In late September, we did work on the RV and shopped in town for necessities.
We've done better this year than most. The Canadian Maritimes are 2000+ miles from Colorado. We didn't want to race home like we have often done in the past. In 1997 we drove from Buffalo, New York, and Niagra Falls to the house in three days. This year we planned activities to make the trip more interesting and more relaxing. In New York we stayed at a beautiful state park, Chenango Valley, and did some genealogy research in Norwich, where my great-grandparents lived. Then we arranged to meet cousins in Indiana. When we learned about an RV rally for owners of Montana 5th wheels in Indiana, we quickly signed up and spent three days learning a lot of new information about our trailer.
After spending two days at the Mississippi River park, we were headed west on I-80 to Lincoln, Nebraska, till we learned the RV park there had been booked solid for weeks because of a University of Nebraska football game. We ended up driving to DesMoines, then south to Eagleville, Missouri (skipping Kansas City because of a NASCAR race), with later stops at Salina, Kansas, and Limon, Colorado, along I-70, instead of taking I-80, as planned. All of which means we're taking 15 days from the Niagara Falls area to our house, not three--a much better way to travel, if you have the time.
Now the question is--when will we start traveling next year?