Monday, January 6, 2020

Denver 2019 day 4 Nil sine Guideo Pretium

June 23 2019

A couple days of hiking and the weather, coupled with massive altitude headaches and dryness meant a slower awakening again.  We ate a basic breakfast, with Rosa de Guadalupe on the television.

That series is kind of like a Latin Twilight Zone where horrendous crap happens to someone, then someone else prays, a wind blows, a white rose appears and the Virgin miraculously makes everything better…or at least nominally less horrendously crappy.

We headed out on the day’s adventure before seeing how the miracle of the incontinent boy played out.

Anabelle picked a fuzzy and blue hat to combat the chilled air. 

Ooh, mountains out the car window!!!
I always forget and get surprised
We’re easily distracted.

We went to morning mass, and then met up with Titi and Uncle Roy at a Peruvian Buffet downtown.  There was much Peruvian buffeting, and then we split up. 
They took Abuelita home and we drove back in the more wilderness direction to go to the Morrison Museum we didn’t have time to get back to the day before.

Everyone got that?

As always with this small but amazing hands-on, working paleontology museum, we learned some cool new stuff, increasing our educationalness.

Kevin, the Apatosaurus Ajax bones they had been excavating since before our first visit to Colorado came from the first one ever discovered of that sub species! 

The famous world’s smallest stegosaur tracks were found in Dinosaur Ridge!

A full grown pteranodon (eighteen foot wingspan) only weighted seven to eight pounds!

The young snakes they only acquired the previous year were named Wiggles and Squiggles.

Well, maybe not everything was amazing.

In the working room, Kevin’s rock formation had been split into sections and they were also working on getting allosaur bones out of it. 

On another pile of glue and plaster from Wyoming, our guide from the tour last year was working on cleaning out the specimens.  Anabelle continued her tradition of working on the same fossil extraction for the past eight years.

In one more moment of meeting my past self in a dinosaur place, it was nifty seeing a little boy on the tour who knew all the dinosaurs’ and other extinct creatures’ names.

We picked up a couple things in the gift shop. I got a Carnegie amargasaurus based on Anabelle noting A) You can never have too many sauropods, and B) it looks like he has hippie dreadlocks.

That’s my girl.

Rosa got a new dinosaur period identification mug, to help her understand us…in some cases.

Anabelle picked out a little glass “flappy ray” which taught us all a lesson.  They wrapped it super well to protect it in transit.  Therefore when it was placed in the pile of souvenirs and receipts when I came home, it looked like a pile of scrap paper and we have no idea where it ended up.  This was predestined as when I looked online for a replacement for her birthday, I got the last one in stock of “Stanley the Stingray.”

After the tour, I asked about the gastroliths contradictions I ran into the previous year.  The guide told us they did know about the paper that I assume the other museum was basing their ideas on, but Dr. Bakker said it wasn’t conclusive and just because the stone shapes didn’t match current ones, it doesn't provide a better explanation.

She was going to check with him next time he was in, but it sounded conclusive enough for me.

Once again, one degree of separation from Doctor Bakker easily beats a volunteer with an unspecified “they told us to say…”

We’d seen a new walking trail advertised behind the museum and it was early enough to check it out.  It zig zagged up through a large field in back of the place, providing views of various formation formed mountains all around.  There were multiple copies of the same sign with the different ridges highlighted. It felt kind of like walking through a giant pop-up book. 

At one point along the path two roads diverged.  One dead ended around a small hill and Anabelle called it, “The Road Not Taken.”  I told her when it was first released, that poem got a Frosty reception.  She said through laughter, “I appreciated that.”

We’re hysterical and educational to have around.

There were a couple of spiky flowers deserving of photographs before we reached the end of the path at Mount Falcon’s Eastern Trailhead.  (That’s the one we didn't park at last year, for anyone who is genuinely paying attention to any of this foolishness.)

Rosa’s toes and Anabelle’s teenagerness had enough walking for one day, and they sent me back down the trail to get the car.  Fortunately, I could see where I had to go, since the altitude, solitude and local herbs clouded Siri’s mind to the point she decided staying at the museum was the closest possible point to the trailhead parking lot halfway up the mountain.

On the way to pick them up, I correctly predicted they’d need a visit to Yogurtland before we went home. 

Given their predilection for that location, I think the spiky flowers could have made the same prediction.

Anabelle was thrilled to find the Blueberry Lavender flavor was there. Rosa was less enthusiastic, stating it tasted like “Poo Pourie.”

We’re all hysterical.

We stopped at Target for…um… not to check out the giant retro Mego collection. However, since that’s what I did, I have no idea why we went there.  Considering the disaster of reused parts that led to a brown Lizard head on a Klingon body for the original Gorn, the new one was awesome.  That quality was not maintained across the board, as Richie Cunningham had brown hair.

We needed to drive west, due to an earlier declaration.

Rosa and Anabelle were quite full of all of their favorites from the Peruvian Buffet.  However, after being told about the size and variety offered that would easily address my tastes and health requirements, that afternoon, I witnessed a much smaller than expected, cream sauce covered selection.

I took one look at the buffet and, in a tone that has only been equaled by my Mother upstate New York stating she was not eating at ****ing Howard Johnsons, declared, “I'm AM eating at ****ing El Rancho.”

Anabelle and Rosa came along to offer support and eat some fantastic sides as a snack. I got some surprise green beans that none of us ordered, which were excellent.  Anabelle wanted apple juice, but the waitress, who also explained why they were closed Saturday (a wedding), explained they didn't serve apple juice.

This was odd since Anabelle had it on every previous and subsequent visit.

On the drive home, accompanied by the dancing styles of Pigeon once again, I made the “Look out! Mountain!” joke I make every time we passed Lookout Mountain.

So, I'm not always hysterical, but at least I’m predictable.

A much better joke was accidental.  A large truck was going twenty-five miles an hour on the high speed western highway; I came up on it around a curve and yelled “JESUS!”  Since we were passing the Cabrini Shrine at the point, Anabelle and Rosa pointed to the hilltop and said, “Yup, there he is.”

See? Hysterical.

We stopped to get gas, but mostly so I could pose next to the appropriate sign wearing my “Something strange is afoot at the Circle K” t-shirt.

Returning home there was a bit of chatting with Hope the bunny and the requisite hot tub Disney World trivia. While we backed up pictures on the computer during the chatting, we searched around for something to watch, and discovered a bunch of Godzilla movies that remained hidden in the previous night’s attempt.

With the exception of a panicked dash back to the pool to confirm Anabelle’s watch was still there (behind a locked gate) we had an entertaining night sharing the far more awesome than its production values should allow Godzilla vs Megalon.

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