The “River of Lost Souls” just got the EPA’s stamp of good health

I was driving home Tuesday night, and as I leveled out on Log Hill I was reminded we're about to get a celestial visitor on Dec. 16.  
As I was heading down Ponderosa Drive, ahead of me in the night sky was the constellation Orion, spread like a giant butterfly in the clear night sky.
I know it's a hunter from Greek mythology, but the three stars of the hunter's belt always looked to me like a butterfly's body, with the hunter's shoulders and legs representing the wings.

STR discussion open until closed

During the past two Ouray City Council meetings the subject of short term rental regulations has been on the agenda for discussion.
The topic has been weighed for about a year by a citizen committee appointed by council, and that committee's recommendations were given to the Ouray Planning Commission for further discussion and refinement before it presented a final recommendation to council.

Potent numbers at the five-year mark of legalized marijuana

There sure is a lot to wade through in a recently released report from the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area, a drug-prohibition enforcement program run by the U.S. office of National Drug Control Policy. The program, which is focuses on Colorado, Utah, Wyoming and Montana, published a 94-page report entitled "The Legalization of Marijuana in Colorado: The Impact, Volume 5." It has published the report each year since marijuana retail sales were legalized in Colorado.
Here are some of the findings:

Don't shoot your house guests

For holidays, I like to take the easy way out and have someone else write my column. Usually, I turn to the historic pages of Ouray County newspapers past. Here is my choice, not because it's a heartwarming Thanksgiving story but instead because it gives a snapshot of the area 130 years ago.
If unexpected guests come to your home this holiday season, don't do what Charles Crosthwaite did in 1888, high above timberline in Ouray County.

Death is hard enough as it is

Nothing like a funeral to tear a family apart.
My family may be the outlier. I'm doubting it, though. This sort of thing probably goes on in a good number of families.
Before my mom passed, the seven of us siblings revealed ourselves in actions and inactions regarding our care for her. The players in this sibling dramedy became defined:
The Giver: the sibling who sacrificed everything personal including job, lifestyle and personal time to care for my mom.

Dusting off the political jokes

Ah, election week. Where the hanging chad meets the Russian saboteur.
Or something like that.
Lots of things to vote on. To raise or not to raise taxes, taxes, taxes. That is the question.
There are incumbents trying to explain themselves, challengers trying to explain the incumbents and the dreaded unopposed who don't have to explain anything at all.
There are groups that have driven you nuts, groups that will drive you to the polls and groups that will just steer clear of any polls whatsoever.

First man on Moon landed here

Thanks to all our readers and friends for the emails and phone calls expressing your sentiments regarding my column last week. Very much appreciated.

Need a Jeep? You're in luck. This year's winner of the annual Ouray Jeep Raffle is selling the grand prize, as was posted on social media. No price given, but you can bet she at least wants to cover the taxes.

Sing all you want, Mom

I can see her now, as plainly as I saw her more than 50 years ago, in the backyard of our house in Kansas. I'm watching her hang clothes on the line, battling a steady breeze that flutters her efforts.

A snake in the closet

Usually police blotters are pretty "Joe Friday" in their reporting: just the facts, ma'am.
But the activity blotter dated Sept. 28 from the Montrose County Sheriff's Office gave great detail of terror and bravery in a Montrose residence. It read like this:
0955 Hours: Deputy was dispatched to a report of a snake in a house in the 1000 Block 6435 Road.
"On 09/27/18, at approximately 0955 hrs., I responded to a report of a snake inside the residence. Upon arriving, I met with the reporting party.

Can't argue what you can't argue

Every day for the past 23 days I've received an email from the Colorado Democrats. Well, not all Colorado Democrats, just the ones at the state party level who send out broadcast emails that somehow manage to bypass my spam folder.
It's pretty much the same email, just updated daly. It chronicles State Treasurer Walker Stapleton's parking spot at the state capitol.