Monday, September 20, 2021

Another random shooting star, this time as a fallen angel

I've seen many random shooting stars in my life.  The first one wasn't until my mid-teens.  From there, I've seen shooting stars relatively frequently.  In the past 10 years, I spotted most of these while walking my dogs.  That makes sense, since my dogs are the main reason I'd be outside at night often enough for the opportunity to see these spectacles.

A couple nights ago, I spotted yet another shooting star.  This one was unlike any others I've seen before.  At first, it appeared as a piercingly bright light just above my line of sight. I thought a street light just blew out.  However, I quickly remembered there was no street light above me, and I instantly realized it was yet another shooting star.  I looked up to see the shooting star falling down in the Northwestern sky towards the horizon.  However, instead of just a bright spot, or a bright spot with a streaking tail, or just a steak, or a quick flash, or a massive fireball; this shooting star was composed of opposed half-circle plumes on either side of a small bright spot. The plumes were bright at their tangent point and faded at their respective vertical centerlines. There was also a short streak emanating from the bright tangent point.  The color of the shooting star was unusual.  Though being generally bright-white, the shooting star appeared to have a faint tint of green on the left plume (to my perspective) and more reddish on the right plume.  These features gave the shooting star an appearance of an angel plummeting to Earth.  

As the shooting star came down to the tree line, it faded out nearly completely.  It's core remained as a dimming amber just as it reached the tree line.  Judging the final brightness, the shooting star seemed like it landed somewhere close-by (well, closer than usual).

Wednesday, September 08, 2021

Fleeting view of the Flintstone House

Fleeting view of the Flintstone House.  It's been a while since I've seen it.  I wasn't quite sure where it was on the hillside as we approached Northbound on I-280. As such, this photo sucks. However, the menagerie is still visible.

More random photos without context

Kings Fish Seafood @ Valley Fair Mall in San Jose, CA

Pinkberry @ Valley Fair Mall in San Jose, CA

Han Sung Korean BBQ @ Santa Clara, CA

Shabuway @ San Jose, CA

Thursday, August 19, 2021

Sunset in New Mexico

The sun! It sets! Or, more correctly, the Earth's revolution about its axis has moved me to a position where I am no longer able to see the sun.

...and this could very well be my last post on Instagram via 3G ever, since my carrier is shutting down its 3G network later this year.  I wonder how the 5G will replace it if coverage isn't quite to the 3G equivalent yet.  Looks like a lot more roaming.

Sunday, August 15, 2021

Predictions for 2020's vs what we have so far

Predictions for the 2020's:
"Flying personal transportation"
"End of growing old"

What we have so far:
"Daytime drive-in movie theater"


Saturday, August 07, 2021

So many meat choices at Biker Jim's Gourmet Dogs

Buffalo, Elk, Chicken, Rattlesnake, Rabbit, Boar, Ostrich, Antelope and even Brats (and of course cow too) all on the menu.  Mine was a very tasty Southwest Buffalo with Drunk Pirate topping.


Wednesday, July 28, 2021

G8 checked off another goal

My G8 just checked off another goal today.  Her goals are to visit the general extremities of America.  She's been to waters of the West Coast, East Coast, and the North Coast (Great Lakes).  Today, she made it to the Top of America near the peak of the Mount Evans Summit. The road that goes to the summit is the highest paved road in North America.  Not only that, the parking lot at the end of the Mount Evans Scenic Byway is subsequently the highest paved parking in North America at 14,132' above sea level.  

Santa Barbara, CA (2009)

Erie, PA (2011)

Rockport, MA (2011)

Mount Evans, CO (2021)

West Coast   •   ☑ Eastern Seaboard   •   ☑ Great Lakes   •   ☐ Gulf Coast   •   ☑ Mount Evans   •   ☐ Badwater Basin

Mount Evans Day Trip

It's been a long time coming.  The shutdown in 2020 prevented plans, and then stuff going on in 2021 delayed plans again.  However, Allie and I have finally made the drive to the highest paved road (and subsequently, the highest paved parking lot) in North America!  We decided to take Joie and Tobzilla with us as well.  Even though the drive can be a bit nerve-racking, especially near the top, the experience was great once we reached the summit.  I'm glad we were able to visit the summit together.  The weather was clear and the temperature was nearly perfect (not too hot or too cold).  It was a great way to beat the 100+°F temps in the Denver area for the day (at least until we returned home).  

A goat is going goat. This mama goat took to the high ground to protect her kid from the tourist and their leashed dogs.   Instagram: 

Here's Allie with our leashed critters near the 14,265' summit of Mount Evans (and not near the protective mama goat).  Instagram:

Near the top of the summit, this marmot looked upset at the tourist at first, but then kept posing for us.  Instagram:

Allie with our critters at Summit Lake Park on the drive back down from Mount Evans Summit.  Instagram:

OK, adding one more from today, of me, at Mount Evans Summit with the great distance in the background. Instagram:

Monday, July 19, 2021

Mexican Food this authentic should be illegal outside of Mexico

Mexican Food this authentic should be illegal outside of Mexico. OMG this is awesome, and in Denver Metro Area of all places! Great margarita too!

Monday, July 12, 2021

The Ice Dragon and the Blue Rose, Second Edition is now available!

At long last, the Second Edition of my book, The Ice Dragon and the Blue Rose is now available.  The book has been refreshed to use current common practices for ebook organization; and, well, spelling and grammar fixes.  This is a "Decide My Quest" story that allows you to choose how you wish to experience your quest.  This is an awesome reimaging of 2nd person and interactive storying telling.  Your choices allow you to see the same story from multiple (and sometimes opposing) perspectives.  I loved making this story and even rereading it!  The story contains multiple dead-ends and multiple success endings.  Check it out!

I hope to make more of these types of stories in the future, as time allows.  It's a fairly complex process to write these, but the results are great!

Monday, June 21, 2021

Trail 10 - Shady on a hot day

This past weekend, Allie and I drove a bit.  The destination was Meyer Ranch Park (backup link)  From the book, 60 Hikes within 60 Miles for Denver and Boulder, this is entry #10. Though the book lists this trail as being in the Foothills of the Rocky Mountains, for all intents and purposes, this is in the Rocky Mountains.  The entire park is west of the Legault Mountain Peak (9045ft).  The drive here is a bit longer than places I would call "Foothills".

Meyer Ranch Park is worth the longer drive.  This is a great place for a hot day.  Most of the Lodge Loop Trail (that forms a full circuit at this park) is shaded under tall trees.  The trail itself is very well maintained.  The uphill portions aren't steep.  Overall, Allie and I really enjoyed this location and will definitely consider coming back.

Though Allie and I originally intended to visit this park earlier in the year, we were unable to get out to this beautiful location until the very last day of Spring (or the first day of Summer by a certain reckoning).  However, this was the perfect day.  With temperatures in the 80's and 90's in Denver, a shady hike in a wind cooled valley exceeded our expectations.  

By my information, a visit to this park comes with a likelihood to see wildlife.  Unfortunately, on this day, we did not catch any glimpses of mountain critters.  

As an unexpected coincidence, we finished our hike at nearly noon.  After our hike, we headed back into Denver Metro for lunch.  We decided on a famous restaurant that we haven't tried yet, Cherry Cricket.  

The burgers at Cherry Cricket were good.  I did something that is surely a sin somewhere to someone; I tried the Impossible Burger (veggie) with bacon strips!  Yummy.  Also, while we dined, this sucker visited us in the adjacent fish tank: