The ridge to the “Bridge of Heaven,” a hike up memory lane

The Old Horse Thief Trailhead is a Nolan Ryan stone's-throw from our house in Lovely Ouray. In minutes Bobbie and I are zigzagging up its wooded switchbacks, savoring fresh, pine-scented air that we’ve come to expect but now take for granted. The morning air is cool to bare skin, the trail damp from recent showers. Our bodies and minds soon warm to the uphill task and reluctantly cooperate. Life is still good.

Pizza delivery, government style

Some of our Montrose subscribers have called recently to ask us why their newspapers have been arriving a few days later in the mail than usual. We just found out why. Instead of our out-of- county papers being shipped to Grand Junction for postal sorting, they are now being shipped to Denver!
This decision is not a local one, but a decision of your United States Postal Service.

Jumping up and down on the Hangman’s trap door

Suffering from a bout of cabin fever, Bobbie and I recently hiked the vertiginous Bear Creek Trail where we happened upon three runners. Two were hard bodied outdoor gals training for the Hardrock 100—an arduous hundred-mile foot race that ascends 13,000 foot passes and weaves the rugged mountains between Silverton, Ouray and Telluride. “Hardrock” says it all; it takes elite runners nearly 24 hours—all day and all night—to finish. The rest drop out or straggle in, trying to beat the 48-hour cut-off.

Riddle: It's a race all who enter can win. What is it?

I was sitting on a bench near the iconic lift bridge in Duluth, Minnesota. It was early evening and I had completed Grandma's Marathon that morning. Anyone who's ever run 26.2 miles in one stretch without stopping knows the feeling: a strange mix of two extremes — exhaustion and exhilaration. It's not the runner's high that sometimes happens during a long-distance run, it's what happens when you cross the finish line of a marathon.

"Hey, Tom." The voice was familiar. So was the face.

As long as it continues to fit, it fits

Here in Ouray County, I count six new restaurants opening over the next month or two. I am sure this paper will cover them as they appear on the scene so I won’t provide any spoilers at this time. And even as I write these words, I just heard that one of the proto-restaurants has failed because the money backer backed out. This reminds me that restaurants are like species and are subject to natural selection too. What works, works. That sentence may seem like a tautology but it is very powerful idea indeed.

It’s a fair time for children and livestock alike

With the end of the school year come graduation, continuation and advancement ceremonies. In Ouray County that means community gatherings and parties. Not only do the families arrive with smiles and accolades; town folks, neighbors, community members and anyone interested in being a part of the festivities come out in droves. The end of the school year also ushers in the height of fair preparation time. The 4H kids are now busier than ever.

The Rule of Law? Don't make me laugh…

The notice read: "You are herby summoned to APPEAR at the JOHNSON COUNTY COURTHOUSE…".  Who or what is a "herby"? I wondered. Typos happen; apparently proofreading at a certain county courthouse in Kansas doesn't.

A summons for jury duty, of course, doesn't mean you're going to be selected. It just means you're going to have at least one very slow morning waiting for something – anything – to happen. Then when it does it invariably involves listening to lawyers asking simple questions and explaining things to adults while pretending that they're talking to three-year-olds.

Your business is our business

Next week is "Sunshine Week," celebrating transparency in government. In Colorado, the Colorado Open Records Act, or CORA, and the Colorado Open Meetings Law, or COML.
Before CORA was formalized in 1969, a citizen's ability to access public records was at the discretion of the custodian of the records.
A few years back, we had issue with a local school board on behalf of the public and were met with objection to obtaining emails between members because one member used a private email account.
Remind you of anyone in the news recently?

Let the healing continue

It's been five years since we moved to Ouray County, after being behind the Pine Curtain in East Texas for over a decade. We stay in touch with folks and root around for news from time to time. Sometimes, news from there finds us, and hits us hard.
A couple of tragedies involving best friends of each of our boys have reminded us that healing is a process that never ends.