Thursday, July 31, 2008

Feeling My Age

There were times when this drive would have left me longing for my next road trip. But now, well into my fourth decade of life, it leaves me with aches in my back and shoulder. It leaves me wondering why I drive!

Oh yes! It is for the scenes like this! I love driving because it gives me time to think, to listen to books on my iPod, to enjoy being out of touch! If only it didn’t leave me for days with a crick in my neck. I have to get to a masseur!

Wherever you are today, I hope you’re feeling well!

Don Bergquist – July 31, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy birthday to my aunt, Jennifer

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Time Management

I have a number of meeting on my schedule today and a number of things to do at the office which require an early start so this will have to be short. An apology to the crew of Beach Week 2008 for not getting the pictures uploaded yet. I hope to have it all done and dusted by this weekend. I am uploading them, but it is slow work.

Configuration on the new PC continues. I will get caught-up on the blog as soon as I can. I don’t want to upload to the blog until the pictures are ready to share, so I will write these and not post them until the pictures are ready… that way they post in the correct order. Off to the office for me now!

Wherever you are today, I hope that you’re having a good week!

Don Bergquist – July 30, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Up To The Neck

I can only imagine how I would have felt if I hadn’t worked over the vacation! Looking at the emails this morning, I saw that this week was going to be a busy one!

Before going to the office this morning, I offloaded the pictures I took on my trip to my old PC. That way, I can get them uploaded while I upload the stuff I have written for the blog. It also give me the chance to get my new PC set-up with all the software that I will need going forward.

The schedule I had today was to get my documentation reviewed and start revisions. I also had a couple meetings. Then there was the finishing of the projects I worked on before the change in my department. Ah! So much time so little to do. (Strike that! Reverse it!) It’s like waves still breaking over me. Time to get caught-up!

Wherever you are today, I hope that you’re having a great day!

Don Bergquist – July 29, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Monday, July 28, 2008

Home Again, Home Again Jiggity Jig

Well, vacation is over. It must be!

The house is a shambles. I got in last night around ten and immediately took Saga for a walk in her park and then unpacked the car. By “unpack” I mean that I pulled the stuff out of the car and dumped it in the living room and on the dining room table. There is lots to do, but today is a recuperation day.

It was a wonderful trip! I got to see a bunch of good friends and had some wonderful times at the beach. The drive was good and uneventful. Saga was an absolute dear. No complaining and no issues.

I am glad to be home, but wish the stay had been a bit longer. Greetings to all my friends at the beach from home! I hope your trips home were as uneventful as mine. I think it is time for a nap! More tomorrow…

Wherever you are today, I hope that your weekend was a pleasant one!

Don Bergquist – July 28, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Sunday, July 27, 2008

…And The Miles Grind By…

It’s just after one and I have stopped for a while to have lunch and to rest a while. According to my calculation, my drive for the day is about half over… at least as the mileage goes. We’ve been driving just over seven hours, not quite five hundred miles at an average speed just above 65mph.

Saga and I started driving around six this morning. The GPS tells me that we have 378 miles left to cover. Gee! Does Kansas never end? I remember now why I prefer the southern route along I-40. The route is about 300 miles longer (2,040 vs. 1,712 according to Garmin.) but with all those little states you pass through, it seems to go faster! Only Tennessee (395 miles) seems interminable on that route. But at least there is scenery! The 435 miles of Kansas are just that Kansas!

I have nothing against Kansas, mind you, I just have nothing for it! I’m covering it at 75mph when I am moving. I can only imagine the sheer mind-numbing boredom that it must have been for the settlers in their Conestoga wagons. Forget MPH! The Conestoga would travel at about 15 Miles per Day! At that speed this trip it would take a month to traverse Kansas!

And if you’re doing it in the summer, you have to deal with the lack of trees and the heat! When I stopped to park in the shade of a building (so that Saga and I do not cook while we’re stopped) and have lunch, I noticed that the hotel we were parked by had a thermometer on their marquee. It wasn’t just that it seemed hot… It was hot!

And heat in this area of the country (if there is any moisture in the air) brings storms. "Wizard of Oz" anyone? Anyone?

There was a front on the surface map when I checked the weather channel this morning. I guess I should save this, and get rolling again. If there are storms ahead of me, then there are storms ahead of me!

Wherever you are today, I hope that you’re staying cool!

Don Bergquist – July 27, 2008 – Russell, Kansas, USA

Saturday, July 26, 2008

The Drive Home Begins

Whew! What a day! The drive has been (overall) a good one. I am hoping that the number of things that have happened already means that tomorrow will be an even better day. It’s around midnight and I am stopped for the night just shy of St. Louis, Missouri. But I am getting ahead of myself.

The morning started in Charleston, South Carolina. The my friends and I said good bye as Saga and I headed west and Fritz and James headed south leaving Ma Karrer and the cats a big, empty quiet house to relax and recover from the trip.

The challenges of the road started not fifty miles into the drive. I never did suss-out what caused the problem, it was a mystery. Suddenly, just after crossing I-95 the traffic came to a complete halt. I-26 was an absolute parking lot. Great! Just nine in the morning and already the “adventures” of the road begin.

The traffic thinned out around Orangeburg and I made it to Chapin (where my cousins live) in time for lunch. My plan had been to spend an hour-or-so visiting and having lunch and then continue the drive. But that is another lesson that I refuse to learn. Forty-[redacted] years of experience is not enough to teach me not to make plans!

The lunch was wonderful; the lunch was full of reminiscing and stories of the family; the lunch was three hours long! I am not complaining! I had a great time and besides, that squall line that was showing on the surface map this morning passed over. I decided not to take off again until it had passed. This picture of Craig and Sheila is a bit fuzzy because the camera was foggy, not because the photographer was!

About the time I hit Asheville, North Carolina, the engine light on my dash came on. Great! I had the Great Smoky Mountains to cross still. A call to the dealership reassured me. That sensor light could be anything. And it probably was. I do not remember when this happened but some time after I turned north onto I-24 the light went out.

I assume that the problem was bad gas. The last time I had filled-up was at a cheap gas station just outside Charleston at the start of the drive. About 500 miles in, I needed gas.

Remembering what the mechanic had said, the engine light could mean anything from a loose gas cap to a problem with the muffler. So, since the car was running fine, I took his advice and kept driving. At Nashville, I filled up with gas from a major brand… not because I thought it was better or anything, but because it was all I saw at the exit that came up after I noticed that I needed gas.
Just a while ago I noticed that the engine light had gone out. So, here I am. I’m not really sure where, exactly, “here” is, but it is not far from St. Louis. The last sign I saw said 75 miles. That was a short way back. The Motel Receipt says “Super 8 Motel, Okawville, Illinois.” By the mile marker, I am 41 miles from the Missouri border.

With everything that has happened today, Car Trouble, Traffic Problems, Unexpected Delays, Weather, not to mention the end of the vacation that is now within spitting distance, what is there left to encounter tomorrow? Space aliens? (I say that to challenge fate… C’mon, babe! Hit me with your best shot! Now it is time for me to collapse into that bed. Sun-up is only six hours away, the road beckons.

Wherever you are today, I hope that the old Irish blessing is an apt description of your day: May the road rise to meet your feet and May the wind be always at your back.

Don Bergquist – July 26, 2008 - Okawville, Illinois, USA

An Irish Blessing:
May the road rise to meet your feet.

May the wind be always at your back.

May the sun shine warm upon your fields.

May you have a happy song within your heart.

May there be a smile on every face you meet.

May you have love to warm your heart, and some to share.

May you be a long time in heaven
before the devil knows you’re dead.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Mixed Emotion Morning

It's sad because by the time this posts, my time at the beach will be at an end; my vacation time dwindling. Nothing left but a few hours in Charleston with my friends and then the long drive westward. It's happy because this has been a lovely visit with my friends, my second family really.

We've had some great times, some laughs, and the holiday will long be remembered by all. But now it is time to post this and get headed out to the beach one last time for the trip. Then it's trundle into the car and off to Charleston.

Wherever you are today, I hope your day is made-up more of happy than of sad!

Don Bergquist - July 25, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Chilling in the face of the Paparazzi is a skill that any professional chiller must develop if he or she intends to join the cutthroat world of competitive chilling.

Here, the currently reigning chill champ of the beach house displays her world class move of "pretending" to sleep through the throngs of photographers who are desperately attempting top snap an image.

The other move that has been perfected by this plucky little competitor is the "pretend you don't see them" move. Here, our chill queen is doing just that to great effect. She affects an air of nonchalance and pretends to not hear the calls of the photographers trying to get that big shot!

This young lady is certainly one to watch for in the world chill championship next month in Beijing... if only she can be bothered to wake-up and show-up for the trials.

Wherever you are today, I hope that you're chilling in world class style!

Don Bergquist - July 24, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Veaches At The Beaches

The Veaches invaded the South Carolina beaches yesterday.

Dateline DeBourdieu Colony: my cousins came to visit and had a blast playing in the surf at the beach. The boys had never been to the beach yet and so, the waves were a new experience.

While the elder of the brothers was brave and fearless, hanging onto Cousin Don for support in some of the larger breakers, the younger one stayed by mommy to keep him safe from the unknown terrors the sea may hold in store.

That lasted for all of five seconds and then the intrepid explorers struck out on their own, exploring the tidal pool and frolicking in the waves. It was a splendid introduction with only a couple bumps as the boys found the raw power of water could (quite literally) sweep you off your feet!

Wherever you are today, I hope that your day is going swimmingly!

Don Bergquist - July 23, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The Chef Arrives

My cousin Sheila arrived yesterday to enjoy the day at the beach with me and my friends.

What a hoot! Sheila and I chatted via phone a couple times in preparation for the trip. First she was going to bring a small token of her appreciation of the invitation to spend the day with us. (She wanted to bring some sweet potato biscuits.) Then she wanted to know if it would be okay to bring a bottle of wine... (You can't really go wrong bringing wine to the beach, I assured her.) Finally she called to ask if my friends would be offended if she brought food. (If what she did was offensive, my friends must be majorly masochistic - they loved it!)

I had no idea what to expect when Sheila arrived. The sheer amount of small tarts, roasts, rice, veggies, and dips that she brought were impressive. It's great having a chef and caterer for a cousin and a friend!

It had been way too long since we'd sat down together and caught-up. and there was plenty of that too! It was great! The boys are a riot! My friends loved meeting my cousins and asked her back any time (even if she didn't bring a week's worth of groceries with her!)

Wherever you are today, I hope your day is a good one!

Don Bergquist - July 22, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Monday, July 21, 2008

Morning Movie

Time to chill as Braden watches a DVD on the PC while the house sleeps in the early morning. May the chill be with you!

Don Bergquist - July 21, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

King Of The Chill

My friends rent-out their house to vacationers. We can only come here when there are otherwise no renters. I love reading the entries in the guestbook. One this time caught my attention. A large group of friends was doing exactly what we are doing this week. Relaxing and sharing the pleasure of each other's company.

One of the phrases in the entry was really funny. Apparently, the group had instituted an actual Lounging contest. Strange, we've had the King of Chill contest ourselves all this time, but never had actual rules for it.. it was more of a laid back thing than that - as a chill contest should be. Apparently the guest families even had rules. From the Guestbook:

One of the highlights of our visit was the lounging contest. Points were given to the people who most exemplified the five pillars of lounging: Style, Duration, Creativity, Frequency, and Lounging under Duress.

Well, I'm glad that they had fun here, I'm to chill to follow any such complex rules. I'm all for the maximization of the chill, and have definite appreciation for the therapeutic benefits of a hammock. (You cannot help but to chill when swaying to the rhythm of the waves, enjoying the warm breezes... perhaps with an occasional sip of the beverage of your choice.)

But I am not at all in favor of codifying the chill! Our lounging about the house is more like a shampoo than a contest: Lounge, Chatter, Repeat!

Wherever you are today, I hope that you're able to experience chill!

Don Bergquist - July 21, 2008 - DeBordieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Saga Goes To Town

The great part about the beach for me is that there is almost always cooking activities of one ilk or another going on. I scored big this evening! The people finished their ham and there was a tasty bone left over!

But why is Daddy standing over there taking a picture of me?

Saga - July 20, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Sunday, July 20, 2008

A Day At The Beach

It was a lovely day of beach combing, eating, drinking, and generally having a great time! The tropical storm that has been churning its way up the coast, Cristobal, has headed north out of the area. What a lovely day!

Wherever you were today, I hope it was a day at the beach!

Don Bergquist - July  20, 2008 - DeBourdieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Quotes From The Beach

"You must be Anna and Andrew's daughter!" I said to the little blonde moppet that I encountered walking through the house yesterday!

"No." Came the unadorned response.

"Oh." I said. I wasn't really sure how many kids there would be here and to whom they would belong, I just knew that Cousin Anna (a cousin of my friends who invited me to the beach) had a child a while back and as she and her husband were there, I made a guess. "So, who are your parents."

"That would be Mommy and Daddy." She said proud of giving the right answer to a difficult question.

"Of course it would!" I turned to the other child playing with the blocks spread across the floor! "And who are your parents?"

"My mommy and daddy, silly!" He responded as if I had just asked the supidest question he had ever heard!

Well, you ask a silly question...

Wherever you are today, I hope you're having a great day!

Don Bergquist - July 20, 2008 - DeBordieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Saturday, July 19, 2008

At The Beach

We are finally here! The weather is lovely. Hot and Lovely!

Saga and I arrived at the beach last. We rolled in last night around 21:00 but laden with beer, wine and gifts for all. I was asked to stop for provisions on the way through town... it was okay, it gave me a chance to chat with my cousin who called as I was driving up from Charleston.

I, of course, wanted to immediately stake-out the hammock, but waited to make sure that nobody else wanted to. The blowing storm dissuaded people from wanting to sleep outside. Since I stayed up late to chat with my friends, it had stopped raining before I turned-in. Saga and I snagged the hammock room!

This morning dawned overcast and cooler. Pretty soon, we'll be congregating in the main floor for camaraderie and coffee... I suppose I should post this and get downstairs to be social!

Wherever you are today, I hope you're having a great day!

Don Bergquist - July 19, 2008 - DeBordieu Colony, South Carolina, USA

Friday, July 18, 2008

Driving East

It was a lovely drive! It was a bit long in places; some of the driving across Oklahoma is a bit dull, but I am getting ahead of myself. Let's start at the beginning!

Monday, right after work, I packed the car and headed to bed early. Saga and I then trundled ourselves into the car early Tuesday morning and headed south. It may have been three when I wrote my entry on Tuesday morning, but by the time I was actually on the road, two hours had gone bye. Saga and I were passing through Colorado Springs right around sunrise. Still before rush hour, but not nearly as early as I would have preferred.

We could not have asked for better weather! The winds were calm for most of the day, and the skies clear over the beckoning road. I listened to music and books on tape, Saga occasionally leaned against my shoulder to cast an inquisitive glance forward (I'm guessing that this is the Canaan Dog equivalent of "Are we there yet, Daddy?"

I stopped and had one of the salads I had packed for lunch at a roadside park in New Mexico. We were about to descend off the plateau into the lowlands where Texas and New Mexico join-up. We skirted between a couple large thunderstorms in western Oklahoma, and had dinner (another salad and some fruit) at a rest stop in Arkansas.

We stopped for the night Tuesday in West Memphis, Arkansas. Wednesday morning, we were on the road again bright and early. (The clock said six so I know that it was seven in the morning. – We'd long since charged into the Central Time Zone.) It wasn't a "full night's sleep, I had not gotten there until after two in the morning, but it was enough for the time being.

Wednesday's weather was better than Tuesday's. How is that possible? The skies were bluer; the air was clearer; the roads were – with the exception of traffic just outside Nashville – wide open! It was a great day to drive. The one thing I did which I considered to be ill-advised was to take the detour from the direct route and go through the Blue Ridge Parkway in Eastern Tennessee.

The drive was lovely and it only added three hours to the overall time (according to the calculations my GPS gave me) but the traffic getting to the parkway was horrendous. I knew I should have though about that twice. Here is a word of advice to everyone out there:

The best time to visit Pigeon Forge if you want to avoid the traffic is any time before 1963! Every time I have ever been there it is one large traffic jam as people vie for position in the queue for Dollywood and the other tacky destinations in the area. (Were there really that many go cart tracks in Pigeon Forge last time I was there?)

Saga and I made it to Charleston on Wednesday night just after nine-thirty. My friends and I had a bite of dinner and a nice chat and then I skulked off to bed. It had been a long two days.

Yesterday I set-up my computer and did some writing for the projects I am working on in the morning and did some work for my friend, the Colonel on his computer in the afternoon. My friend Fritz arrived from Florida last night and some time today we are headed up to the beach. Look for more soon!

Wherever you are today, I hope you're going somewhere!

Don Bergquist – July 18, 2008 – Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Dead Tired Doggy

Nobody can tell me that being the passenger on a long car trip isn't tiring! Poor little thing! Saga must be absolutely whipped!

I've been sitting here at my PC writing a spec most of the morning… I was hearing something I couldn't readily identify… Saga was snoring! Moments later, she went into a period of REM sleep; her nose started to twitch, she snarled in her sleep, her feet started twitching. I imagine she must have been dreaming of throttling me for not stopping more often. All those smells we were zooming by way too fast for her to sniff-out!

Look for stories and pictures from the road tomorrow!

Don Bergquist – July 17, 2008 – Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Random Firings

The other day I had an appointment downtown (in Denver) which gave me the opportunity to ride the light rail. Gee! I had almost forgotten what a bizarre collection the riders of the light rail could be. There were tattooed and pierced kids on their way to college at the Auria campus of DU, and there were people wearing badges of some convention going on in the Denver Convention Center. There were people who were people sitting plugged into their iPods, their faces contorting as they (thankfully) silently mouthed the words to whatever song was playing. There were business men and women rushing to wherever they were going.

But the prise spot on the train was the man holding a conversation with nobody in particular. Actually, it was less a conversation and more a running diatribe of random statements; one large monologue comprised of an eclectic mix of gibberish and nonsequitur. I have no idea what set him off. He was sitting there silent when I boarded, but the moment the train left the station, he turned to the person across the aisle from him and started in.

He was talking, I could hear that and there was nothing special about him, just another person on the train. What he said before my attention was drawn to him could have been anything. (Given what I heard later, I am sure it was.) The first statement that caught my attention, because it came in a lull in the noise in the car was: "My parents are from Sweden, you know. That is why I have a British passport."

Huh!? The babble continued. Soon I over heard him say in an angry tone: "Charity begins at home? Bullshit! I used to live in Portland!"

This motley stream of consciousness continued until I got off the train. Strange!

Wherever you are today, I hope you'll have a great day!

Don Bergquist - July 17, 2008 - Somewhere on the Road, United States of America

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A Note From The Road

I do not expect to get back to the computer until some time later this week – possibly this weekend from the beach. I hope to be getting some good pictures while I am headed east.

Please look for updates from me as soon as I can get back to my computer!

Wherever you are today, I hope your week is going well.

Don Bergquist – July 16, 2008 – Somewhere on the road – headed east, USA

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

…And The Winner Is…

Tuesday Morning, Butt-Ugly Early O'clock!

I've delayed my departure until this morning. By the time the car was parked yesterday, it was later than I wanted to leave yesterday… I would have hit rush hour in Colorado Springs. So instead, I took a nap. Then I decided that I wanted to get a good night's sleep.

It's now about three in the morning. The weather reports look good for the roads all the way into Memphis. I should arrive some time this evening. By the time this posts, later this morning, I hope to be headed east, somewhere in – if not already through – the Texas Panhandle on I-40. But for that to be the case, I will have to get moving.

There is an old saying (I believe it is Irish): "May the road always rise to meet your feet, and the wind always be at your back!" I'd wish it to myself, but am afraid of generating negative karma by doing so. Instead: I wish you a wonderful day!

Wherever you are going today, I hope that the road is good to you and that the miles absolutely fly by!

Don Bergquist – July 15, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy birthday to my friend, Michael

Happy birthday to my friend, Phil

Monday, July 14, 2008

Vacation Begins Today!

Well, the big day is here. I have a couple things to do at the office, I have to stop by the store and get a couple things for my friends back east, and then I want to have lunch with a friend. I anticipate that by one this afternoon I will either be on the road or will be sound asleep so that I can get a butt-ugly-early o'clock start tomorrow morning.

Either way, I have to get to the office today, so I'm posting this and headed in.

Wherever you are today, have a great day!

Don Bergquist – July 14, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Game Night

I believe this was the biggest game night I have had. Seven adults came by and there were also three children… Poor Saga, she was a bit perplexed by all the noise and activity.

She had to go upstairs to chill. She kept trying to round-up the kids and bring them to daddy. (Thing was, Daddy didn't particularly want the children rounded-up and brought to him. But when Saga is stressed, she reverts to instinct. You could almost see her thought process: "All these little creatures were running around willy-nilly… Daddy must want me to round them up for him!")

The gaming broke-up around ten, I had the floors vacuumed, and the dishwasher going in less than an hour. Everything was done and dusted. (Saga "helped" here too… snaring the larger pieces of dropped food, pretzels, chips, etc – so that I didn't have to pick then up before vacuuming.)

This morning, I have a few Pre-vacation errands to run, and I have to pack the car (as much as possible). Tomorrow I have a few things to do at the office then it is time for me to get back her, get the dog, and perhaps a nap, and then I'm going to hit the road.

Wherever you are, I hope you're having a fine weekend!

Don Bergquist – July 13, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Busy Weekend

I've got quite a list.

I need to get the car washed and cleaned out so that I can spend the better part of next week driving in it in comfort. Saga needs to go to the dog wash… so that I can spent that time in the car with her. She needs a bath! It has been a while. I need to make sure the iPod is all loaded up.

I have a really busy weekend ahead. I've just returned from my ride. Saga and I had a walk earlier and after the errands, I have to get ready for Game Night.

So I suppose I should post this and get busy.

Wherever you are today, I hope you have a relaxing weekend!

Don Bergquist – July 12, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Friday, July 11, 2008

Hot Hot Hot

Ole ole - ole ole
Ole ole - ole ole
I'm feeling hot hot hot

What a scorcher! It was over ninety yesterday and they are suspecting that we will get to nearly a hundred today! Thank heavens I have had that insulation done in my home.

The down-side is that I cannot get out and ride... it is just too hot! I rode the other day but the heat was oppressive I got a headache while. So I've weenied out. I'm staying inside where it's cool or headed to the pool to swim laps.

I know my friends are going to make fun of me next week when we get to the beach, I'm sure that South Carolina is not exactly cool this time of year.

Wherever you are today, I hope you can stay cool!

Don Bergquist - July 11, 2008 - Lakewood, Colorado, USA

It's Too Darn Hot
Cole Porter

It's too darn hot,
It's too darn hot.

I'd like to sup with my baby tonight,
Fill the cup with my baby tonight.
I'd like to sup with my baby tonight,
Fill the cup with my baby tonight,
But I ain't up to my baby tonight,
'Cause it's too darn hot.
It's too darn hot,
It's too darn hot.

I'd like to coo with my baby tonight,
And pitch the woo with my baby tonight.
I'd like to coo with my baby tonight,
And pitch the woo with my baby tonight.
But mister you'll fight my baby tonight
'Cause it's too darn hot.
It's too darn hot,
It's too darn hot.

According to the latest Report
Ev'ry average guy you know
Much prefers his lovey-dovey to court
When the temperature is low,
But when the thermometer goes 'way up
And the weather is sizzling hot,
Mister Adam,
For his madam,
Is not!

'Cause it's too, too
Too darn hot,
It's too darn hot,
It's too darn hot.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Vacation Mode

Time was when I'd start getting into vacation mode a few days (there were times it was a whole week) ahead of the actual commencement of my holiday. Not this year! I haven't even started thinking about packing.

I have so much going on that I am pretty sure that I will be thinking about work even when I am driving to the beach next week. It's Thursday and I am supposed to be leaving on Monday afternoon… You'd have thought that I would at least be making sure I had my stuff starting to collect in my den.

But no! I have done nothing yet except to make sure the car was in order. Tires, alignment, brakes, oil change… all the things I cannot do Monday if I discover it is needed. I had the car checked-out and did what was necessary prior to a 3,000-mile jaunt across the country and back.

Perhaps tomorrow I will start thinking as if I'm in vacation mode… today, I haven't the time.

Wherever you are today, I hope you're looking forward to something fun!

Don Bergquist – July 10, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy birthday to my friend, Jennifer

Happy birthday to my cousin, Becca

Happy birthday to my cousin, Dirk

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

I've Got To Get Myself A New Computer!

I am really hating this! Ever since I had to switch to my emergency back-up computer, I have been far less productive personally than I am used to being. Like this: my blog.

My normal routine is to get up, start a download from my bank, take the dog for a walk, get back and have some breakfast while reviewing my download and answering email. After a shower, and dressing for work, I spend a short time writing and posting my blog.

The problem is that my laptop is slow and getting slower. It seems the more I need it, the slower it gets. It can take up to five minutes just to open the website so that I can post the blog entries. (Never mind that I have to get them written and that takes another program!)

So, I am going to have to bite the bullet and get myself a new computer. Gee! I really didn't want to do that right now! I wonder how long I can put it off…

Wherever you are today, I hope that you’re having a great day!

Don Bergquist – July 09, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Wind Storms

I can really tell when I haven't gotten my ride in the day before!

I've been trying to make sure I get a ride in every afternoon after work; at least five miles… usually down to the park where I have to either cross a surface street or turn around. Some times I go the other direction, up to the golf course below the dam. Either way, it's a lovely ride along the greenbelt.

I have found that a good ride in the evening give me time to think, I've made some interesting breakthroughs on the problems I've been mulling over for my projects while navigating the bike path. It's relaxing, and productive!

But I also find that I sleep better when I've had a ride. Too bad it was so horrid when I got home last night. The area was under a huge virga storm and that means wind! The aspens were really whipping about when I got home last night. And when I walked to get the mail, the wind almost knocked me off my feet. I figured it would be too dangerous to ride.

I'm paying for it this morning! I didn't sleep well and am knackered this morning! Ah, well… it's time for work, so off I go!

Wherever you are this morning, I hope you've had a good night's sleep!
Don Bergquist – July 08, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy birthday to my friend, Tracy

Monday, July 07, 2008

Monday Again

I feel like I have done nothing this weekend.

Of course, the opposite is true. It was quite a busy weekend. There was the Pirate Party (Pictures to be posted soon, I hope), and on Sunday I spent a lovely afternoon scampering about in Boulder Canyon.

I think I feel like I didn't do anything because I have not done any laundry or housework this weekend! Something is amiss when I don’t spend a largish portion of my weekend cleaning and taking care of those things I have let slide all weekend!

But here it is, Monday again and it is time to head to the office. I am hoping that one of these mornings, I'll get enough time to get these posts both written and posted! That will only happen if I can get this darned PC to react a bit more rapidly to the commands I am giving it!

Oh well… one of these mornings!

Wherever you are today, I hope that you'll have a wonderful Monday!

Don Bergquist – July 07, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy birthday to my cousin, Ron

Happy birthday to my uncle, Larry

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Being A Total Slug

Ah! It is one of the problems with getting older, I suppose! I cannot carouse the way I used to. There was a time when The Pirate Party would have been an "adults only" kind of thing; a regular Bacchanal that would last late into the night.

Perhaps it is because we have so many of our group who are now parents, perhaps it is just because we're getting older. And perhaps, we've all just realized the error of our ways… it's amazing how well and naturally the adjectives "young" and "stupid" go together! The party has become tamer over the years. (The last time someone got decked by someone else – accidentally of course – was years ago.)

But even so, after a day of watching the kids play at the games that Chris and Amy had devised for them, and the occasional Mojito or Sangria, and walking around meeting people all afternoon, I was totally whipped when I returned home. Saga and I took a walk (and for reasons I cannot fathom – perhaps just because I was tired – she wanted to take a long walk) and then I fell asleep in front of the tube watching a movie.

Needless to say, yesterday was a casual day. I did some bookkeeping and played with my photographic cataloguing and did precious little else. It was relaxing. But today, Saga and I are headed up to Mount Sanitas. It's a lovely day and I need to clamber over some boulders today!

Wherever you are today, I hope you're having a wonderful weekend!

Don Bergquist – July 06, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Same Party – Different Crew

In years past it would have been unthinkable to have children present at the pirate party. This could be that there were so few of us in the group who had children. (Heck! Some of us were little more than children ourselves! We certainly acted like we were…)

Now that most of us have children, The Pirate Party has taken on a whole new flavor! Whereas the party game of choice before would have been Quarters or Secret Signs (for the uninitiated, those are drinking games) the party games this year were Grab Bag (reach into the shark's mouth for bootie!) and Swordplay.

Perhaps it wasn't as pronounced a change to anyone else as it was for me, but then, I haven't been to one in years. For one thing, my friend, Chris and his family had moved back to New Orleans for a couple years. For another, I had been living in London for the past three Independence Days! So the last time I was at a Pirate Party, there were a couple babies, but that was it… it was still, pretty much, the party I remember.

This year it may not have been as raucous, but it was just as fun. Watching the kids invent games was cool, and some of the people at the party were people I hadn’t seen in years. It was a great afternoon!

Wherever you are today, I hope the change in your life is positive!

Don Bergquist – July 05, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Friday, July 04, 2008

July 04, 2008

While reading the Declaration of Independence over again, it has been a while, it is frightening to think how many of the charges brought against King George, III apply to the current administration. …especially those parts about ignoring the law and the will of the people.

And the man (who would be king) is also named George! Hmmm... As Alice observed: "Curiouser and curiouser!"

The only way to recover from the mess this administration has gotten us into is to become active. Speak your mind! VOTE! People who do not vote get the government they deserve rather than the one they want!

Wherever you are today, I hope you'll get active in your community and have an great day!

Don Bergquist – July 04, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Happy Independence Day

In CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.

That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their Public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness of his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected, whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers.

He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefit of Trial by Jury:

For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation, and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & Perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Brittish brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Happy birthday to my friend, Chris

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Bear Creek Trail

Riding along the Bear Creek Trail last evening, it came to me. This is a great place to live. I am so glad that I had the chance to buy the place that I live rather than getting the place I was under contract for before this place came e available.

The other place was nice and all, it had vaulted ceilings and an actual enclosed garage. But it wasn't on the greenbelt. I absolutely love being here!

The greenbelt runs along the south side of my condominium complex and after crossing Yale Avenue, I am away from traffic for 2.5 miles to the west and about five miles to the east. At that point, I have to cross a road or join surface streets for a short detour. And as the trail runs through a greenbelt, it is a lovely ride.

This is one of the things I missed while living abroad. It's one of the things that makes me happy to be home. I guess I should post this and get to work, but as I am working from home today, I think I'll take a ride at lunchtime.

Wherever you are today, I hope you'll have a great day!

Don Bergquist – July 03, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Daddy's Little Helper

It is so nice to have someone around the help-out about the house. If I had to take care of this place all by myself, I don't know what I would do!

As it is, however, I have LOTS of help around the house. The kitchen floor stays "clean" because no matter how careful I am while cooking, I am bound do drop something. Luckily, Saga is always there to help-out by darting in to make sure that whatever fell doesn't stay on the floor long. If it is something nice and tasty (like a bit of cheese, or a hot dog) it's taken care of with expedience. If it is something yucky (like a piece of a pepper) she nudges it out of the way (and under the toe-kick) for me. If what dropped is borderline edible but fun shaped (like a cherry tomato) she'll carry it out of the kitchen and play with it a while before deciding if it is food or not.

I have lots of help in the bedroom as well. In the morning when it is time to make-up the bed and head to work, he is always there to "help" daddy. Her job (apparently) is to make sure the sheets and the duvet do not slide off the bed and onto the floor. She does this by laying on top of them. I can shoo her off the bed while I start again, but it is, after-all her job to "help" so the moment I walk around to the other side and again try to straighten the sheets and covers, she is right back in there… making sure everything is progressing as it should. The end result of all this "help" is that it takes me far longer than it should to make the bed in the morning but Saga seems to enjoy all the attention she gets.

"Saga, get off the bed so daddy can make it up. That's a good girl."

"Saga, your daddy meant for you to stay off the bed until it was made."

"Saga! Off the bed!"

But she also does an admirable job of informing me when anything is going on that I should know about; visitors arriving, people walking their dogs by, stray branches brushing against the house… she's right there to tell me all about it!

And I wouldn't have it any other way!

Wherever you are today, I hope that you have tons of help at home!

Don Bergquist – July 02, 2008 – Lakewood, Colorado, USA

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Busy Day

I am about to start a new project at the office. I chatted with the person who will be heading-up the new development yesterday and am very excited about it! I have so many ideas that I want to head right into the office and get writing. So today is going to be a really short one.


Wherever you are today, I hope you're busy with things that excite you!

Don Bergquist - July 01, 2008 - Lakewood, Colorado, USA