by Trent Rosser
We made it up and down the mountain without going off the side. My wife was still a little shocked at passing a truck doing 80 going down the mountain, but like I said, we made it. On to a place called Bishop Castle.
Now Bishop Castle is an intricate “one man project” named after its constructor Jim Bishop. Yes, it is a castle. The man actually built a castle with a ball room and even a dragon on top of the castle that breathes fire. Its main tower is over 160 ft tall and you can climb to the top. We did not make it that far. It’s not that I’m afraid of heights, I’m not afraid of falling; It is the sudden stop when you hit the ground that worries me. It is still a very elaborate homemade castle, with stain glass windows where they actually have weddings in the ball room. There is no fee to see the castle, but they do accept donations. It is well worth going to see. But this was a quick stop; we were on our way to Pueblo to see an old friend.
We did not do a lot of sightseeing in Pueblo, we were there mainly to see the old friend and relax for the night. We stayed there the night and had great steaks cooked on the grill. It was good to catch up with old times and I think my wife found out just how stupid we acted as teenagers. We were telling stories and remembering things that we did as teens that make us wonder “How are we still alive?” Again, it was good to get away for a while and forget all our problems by going on vacation and relaxing. Until the next morning when we made our way to Denver, Co, that was far from relaxing.
We pull up Google maps and see that from Pueblo to Denver is only 115 miles away. So roughly about 1 hour and 45 minutes of driving time. When we asked our friends how far away it was, we kept getting conflicting answers. One person said about an hour another said 3 hours and we could not get an answer that was consistent with another. We took off and left Pueblo and everything was fine. We were in Colorado Springs in no time and that is when all hell broke loose. We hit construction and it was bumper to bumper traffic the 70 miles into Denver. Here is a question, why is it when you are in heavy traffic and not sure of the road that you are on and looking for a specific rd, you have to turn the radio down? You’re not using your ears to look for road signs, you use your eyes. So why turn down the radio. It was a constant struggle getting into Denver. My wife would turn up the radio, I would turn it down. And did I mention that the radio actually broke and would only play 1 CD the entire trip. That is right, the entire trip we could just listen to the 1 and only CD we had, and yes we both can recite the entire lyrics of “Journey’s Greatest Hits” album.
We finally made it into Denver and were able to see another friend. We took them out to eat and then to the Denver Bronco’s new practice field. Now after visiting for a few hours we had to head back. Yep, I was going to drive all the way back home and sleep in my own bed that night. So we left Denver in the rear view mirror.
This is where I need to take my hat off and offer my apologies to the drivers of Amarillo, TX. I have constantly thought about writing about the horrible drivers here in town, but it is nothing compared to what happened on the way out of Denver. Yes, it did not take too long to get from Pueblo to Denver, but now it is in the afternoon and now the traffic is 4 times as bad! I have an idea; let’s drive down a construction zone that has a speed limit of 55. Only we will do 85 mph and then every 2 miles slam on the brakes to do 25 mph for a couple of miles. I actually believe that they were actually trying to push me up and down the mountains! They were that close to my bumper. Maybe it is just me, but I think the only one that should be that close to my rear end is a proctologist. Finally after hours and hours I finally saw the light. The New Mexico state line! We were getting Closer and closer to home. We pulled into Clayton, about 8pm. This time we were able to stop and eat at the Eckland Hotel. The food was good, but things seemed different. The food was good, but I believe that we were really too tired to taste anything and we just really wanted to get home. I will get into the Eckland Hotel and Clayton hosting the hanging of “Tom “Blackjack” Ketchum” at another time.
Ok, so we are almost home, hit the Texas state line and the storm that we been watching brew for the last couple of hours have decided to drop every bit of water in the clouds, right on top of us. Thankfully around 2 am, we pulled into the driveway. We were done. Back to work the next day. I will say this. I have not been on a vacation in years. I have had a vacation, but I never really left town. I suggest that if you ever get a vacation, leave town just to get away. It’s hard to relax when you are on a vacation, but you never leave home and still worry about day to day activities. Get out! Enjoy yourself. After all, the vacation will be over sooner than you think! And remember to bring more than 1 CD, after all “Don’t stop believing” that the “Wheel in the sky will keep turning” “Faithfully”!