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Monday, April 30, 2012

Way too many details of Colorado Springs.

Garden of the gods.

The trip was really nice. Not super relaxing, but nice. It's a
ten hour drive one way, so on the way down I read a good bit and we
talked some. We got there about 9pm, ran to Safeway for some things we
forgot, went to bed. We happened to have a room with two queens, so we
each had our own bed and it was just heaven. Am I the only one who thinks sleeping in a bed alone is the best thing ever? No?

Sunday we got up and found a Waffle House (yes, very fancy, but I miss
waffle house). Then we drove around a little, to get a feel for the
town. Did a little napping and reading and shopping, then we met the group at 4 for the welcome night. We all loaded into two giant buses (there were about 80 of us total) and
rode down to Canon City, CO. We spent 30 minutes at the Royal Gorge
then went to the Canon City Ace Hardware, which is Knecht's newest
purchase, and had dinner there.

Monday the managers had meetings all day. The wives met at 8 for the
planned activities. There were 27 of us who went and we rode in private
cars. I was with 3 very nice ladies and one incredibly annoying one.

First we went to the Olympic Training Center, which I really didn't
expect to enjoy, but turned out to be pretty cool. Much of this was due
to our terrific guide, Jason Pryor ,
who is the 5th ranked Men's us fencing hopeful for epee. Because of the
way fencing is awarded medals, epee will NOT be part of the London
Olympics, and now he's trained for 5 years and can't go.  He made the tour really interesting, with lots of little fencing facts. There are a few pictures around the
one of Jason if you click through to flickr.
Jason Pryor

We had lunch at a place called the Olive Branch, which was good,
but fairly frustrating because the acoustics in the room meant I
couldn't hear anything at all.

Then we were all supposed to go to this little historic shopping
district, only we got lost. I was texting a friend the entire time,
it was so funny as to border on unbelieveable, to me in the back seat
anyway. I was in the third row and staying out of it completely. We had
a set of google maps, printed. A Garmin on the dash. Super annoying
woman, in the middle row, had her fancy GPS on her phone. As you
could imagine, they were all *slightly* different from each other. If
anyone had bothered to do it the old-fashioned way (you know, road
signs and common sense) we'd have been fine.  (Example, annoying woman would be all "WE'RE ON THE BLUE LINE! Turn here! Ok, we LOST THE BLUE LINE." When clearly you couldn't have done anything BUT turn, like say at a T intersection.

Eventually we stumbled on another historic shopping district and they
decided we'd shop there. Great! We all get out and got to two stores,
and then they start worrying that we aren't leaving for stop four from
the right place, so we might get MORE lost! Plans are discussed on how
to find the right shopping area. They include: Calling the hotel for
directions, calling the hotel to try to find someone to give us the
cell number of the woman who organized it, calling someone's daughter
who was at work, but who could look it up on the Internet, find the
number and calling destination four for directions. FINALLY I said,
"Why don't you just step back in the store and ask the very nice man
working here?" Oh, good idea. So they do that and he tells us we just
went the wrong way on the road we were on and go back the other way
about 3 miles. So we eventually make it to the right shopping district.
(Side note: we went the wrong way at a T intersection. Wouldn't you
think that if anyone had LOOKED AROUND, this would have been hard to
do, with all the maps?)

When we get to the right place, we pull into a public parking lot.
There are about 80 numbered spaces and 10 cars in the lot. We move our
car THREE TIMES so that we can remember where we parked. In case the
lot fills up in the 45 minutes we'll be there and we can't find it. So
we shop a bit, then get back in the car for stop four.

The last stop is Glen Eyrie castle which
is now a Christian owned retreat center. It doesn't feel like it at
all, except a tiny bit in the intro video and the gift shop. The castle
is now a bed and breakfast as well. I thought it would be pretty
hokey, but we had a good guide again and it was really interesting.
There are more pictures here and you can pick a room to stay in. The first picture in that gallery
is a very good picture of the outside of the castle itself. It's very
ornate, but period correct (supposedly.) Almost every room has a
private bath, and the breakfast part is in a dining hall, so almost
like a hotel.

Fireplace at glen eyrie
That is a very large fireplace.

After that we went back to the hotel to dress up for the awards
dinner, which we got to dress up for. I had a couple drinks (Gin and Tonic. Is there a drink that is a G&T with just a tiny bit of sweetness to it? I wish they were a tiny bit
sweet. How would I order such a thing?) We went back to the bar that
night (you just can't waste a child free night with no driving like
that!) and I had a few more drinks so I got to feel like a groupup!

Tuesday he had one last meeting, and then we were on the road home at
9. I read all the way home, mostly.
It was really nice to not be around the kids for a few days, and
really not to care what we did so long as we were at the dinners. Sadly, I don't think my sister-in-law will be up for it again for a long long time.

And that's the trip wrap up!


  1. Your sis in law will recover.

    What an annoying lady!! Not your sis in law, but that lady with her GPS. You should have ditched her. LOL.

  2. It sounds like a fun trip except for the annoying woman. I bet your sister in law will do it soon - the kids will be easier as they get older.

  3. So glad you got to get away!

  4. Heh. Personally, I think having the bed to myself is pretty fantastic. I sleep so much better because I am such a light sleeper. :)

  5. LOLOLOLOLOL! I'm pretty sure that your sister in law is super excited to be back to her own house. Don't feel bad. I don't that my sister could even last the entire weekend on her own with my three :) I'm glad that you had a fun trip even if you had some "interesting" adventures!

  6. Aside from that car ride with the other wives, sounds like you had a relaxing getaway.

    That IS one HUGE fireplace! How in the world are you supposed to hang Xmas stockings on that, though? Santa could never reach them. ; )

    LOL Re: SIL. I'm with Ti. She'll recover.

  7. I am glad you had a great time!

  8. Awesome trip! So funny but you went to all the places I've never been the bazillion times I've been to the Springs. My grandparents have passed away so I keep wanting to go just to be a tourist. I have been to the Royal Gorge which is pretty cool. Our trips usually include Garden of the Gods and Cheyenne Mountain. Now I want to see that castle!

  9. Ugh. Annoying people. ;)

    What about a vodka sour? Or vodka tonic with lime? I drank too much gin one night in high school and won't touch it now. NO THANK YOU.

    Overall it sounds like a good trip. Though I'm hung up on that word "nice"


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