Friday, August 10, 2012

Vacation, All I Ever Wanted ...

Before the fire (not to be confused with "After the Fire" -- Don't Turn Around, Oh Oh) we were planning on a trip to Alaska for our 20th Anniversary this year.   Well, we blew that wad on hardwood floors and new HVAC ductwork instead.  C'est la vie.

Yeah, we celebrated it during the "fire" drought in posting (which was preceeded by the "Phil's too busy to post because he's busier at work and busier after work than he used to be" drought, and partially caused by the "Phil never finished posting about his 2010 vacation and felt he should before posting new stuff" drought).   We went to Eureka Springs for a long weekend in February, during the off season, and had a little time alone together.  Stayed in the Basin Street Hotel.  Ate at Rogues Manor -- a nice restaurant with well above average food and great service -- and putzed around a little.  Which is what you do in Eureka Springs.  You putz.  Go in and out of shops and restaurants.  Have a drink at the Balcony Bar.

Well not in February.  Too cold.

Basin Street Hotel wasn't exactly booked up for the weekend.  We had our room upgraded to a really nice one with a sitting area and a little bar area and what had to be a California King .... (maybe a Texas King!) bed.   Our (5th?) floor bay window overlooked the street.  The funky thing about the room was ... well, there was a plain table by the window on the far end of the room from the door.  It was tilted.  As were the dressers against that outside wall ... and this is all because the beams holding up the floors have all sagged dramatically.  I'll bet one end of the room was 18" lower than the other end.  Bizarre.   But as my buddy Ryan points out, that's one of the charms of Eureka Springs.  Everything's a bit run down.  But it's functional. And quaint.

Like many places in Eureka Springs, it's allegedly "haunted".  Vicki loves those ghost shows on TV.  So we went on a little ghost hunt of our own.

We couldn't help but spoof the gimmickery you see on those shows. You can see how "serious" we were. We had fun.

You, too -- can still have a relationship partially based on mutual silliness after 20 years! ;-)

At any rate, I told you that story to tell you this one.   Last summer, due to constantly shifting training schedules, I never got out to my beloved mountains.  This year, I vowed that would not happen.  And we're not going to Alaska.


This summer the same kinds of schedule conflicts came up at work once again, but I blocked off some time this fall to go to Colorado ... or something.   Now that I'm in the planning stages, it's apparent how much I have bitten off.  It's going to cost more than I had wanted to spend, but we want to spend a couple of weeks and do a loop through the front range on I-70, down through Arches National Park, Canyonlands National Park, Down to Mesa Verde and back up through Durango/Ouray and who knows from there.

But I don't want to be tied down to motel reservations.  I thought maybe I could rent a small popup, but that looks out of the question.   Saw one for sale, but it takes up pretty much the whole vacation budget and we have no place to store it (or I'd seriously consider buying it ... my little Escort could pull it's tiny 455 lb self.)

So now I'm looking into RV rentals, but I want a compact.  I don't want to be driving some ginormous thing. I only have about 5 weeks to plan this, though.

Budget-wise it's tempting to just go park along a river somewhere or go to RMNP for a week.   The aspens should be turning.   Anyway... that's where we are right now.

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