Sunday, February 16, 2020

Clear sailing!

Today we met at a trailhead along a quiet road. The trail was packed snow and ice. The road was clear. The road won! The first run in a full two weeks with no / nada / zip / zero slipping and sliding. It was grand! It was real running! And to top it off, Taz The Amazing Cattle Dog set a new PR: a 1 hour 55 minute run. Tho' he did give a few longing looks at his favorite (snow-covered) off-leash playground as we passed it by, he seemed pretty darned pleased to be spending the morning running with his two-legged herd.

Saturday, February 15, 2020


 Today's rendezvous locale was, perhaps, not the best choice of running venues given our multiple-snow-squall week. The Meadowlark trail has a lot going for it: hills, flats, views, width, and sun exposure. We were counting on those last two qualities to offer up a fairly clear trail. Oops. What we got instead was crusty snow cover - or - ice. Take your pick.  We picked...back and forth between the two options...and we opted for a rather short run for a Saturday. However, Meadowlark being Meadowlark, it did deliver on the hills, flat and spectacular views!

The geese seemed to appreciate Meadowlark's offerings

Anita smiles through it all
Slipping & sliding & hamming it up for the camera

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Maybe a better way

Oooh! Oooh! Skiers!  Let's go get them!
The snow is doing a very fine job of sticking around. There is enough of it on the trails and enough ice on the roads that it makes one wonder if, perhaps, there might be a mode of self-propelled transportation that would be a bit more pleasurable than running. This ponderable came to the forefront of my brain when Taz and I ran to and though CU South today which seems to have become an in-town cross-country skiing mini-mecca.  Skiers everywhere - all those skinny sticks flashing by Taz much to his amazement.  

Hmmm.  I just looked out the window. It is snowing again. I wonder if those old skis of mine are up for another outing? ...what color wax should I use?...

Snow Sneaux Whatcha got against snow?

Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Yup. More snow.

...and here I thought February was our driest month.  Six-ish more inches overnight. Running was a challenge - but Taz sure had a good time out there!

Well now. This creature smells intriguing!

Enough with the camera already. Let's get a move on!

Can we run all the way to the moon, mom?!

Monday, February 10, 2020

Calm respite

Running home from my volunteer gig was not a whole lot of fun today: navigating through packed ice, chopped ice, black ice and dodging cars all the while. That is, until I got to the trail around the field along my route and close to home.  Whew! Packed runnable snow, a fox resting atop its den, birds singing in the sunshine. The tension drained from my body and peace returned. Slowing to a stop, looking up at the blue sky, smiling. All is good.

Sunday, February 09, 2020

Hot and Cold Hot and Cold

Heading up Boomerang
Yesterday's bright sunshiney day was followed today with blustery cold and snow.  We decided on a run through NIST and up Boomerang Hill hoping that the NIST roads  would be plowed and the hill would have been traveled enough and exposed to the sun enough prior to today's snow that the surface would be fairly runnable. Well, not much was runnable - but it was a fun outing nonetheless. There's nothing quite like being right in the thick of the elements to make a human feel alive!
Up top

Saturday, February 08, 2020

The Weekend Begins

In "life according to pjv", there is no better way to start the weekend than with an early morning trail run with friends, sunshine, and sparkling views. And that's just what we got today. Ahhhhhhh

Friday, February 07, 2020

Errand Run

Typically, when I run errands, I literally run errands. Today's errand run took place during another snowstorm which meant choosing my route carefully. Main streets are plowed but too busy to run on. Sidewalks along the main streets get all the snow that the plows kick up and are only sporadically shoveled. So off to the quieter neighborhood streets I went, taking a winding route to my errands.  Since I've run a mile or 2 or 20,000 in Boulder, and since I love exploring, I'm pretty familiar with the side streets around town. I have a favorite when I'm avoiding one particular busy north/south street - it has a bit of a curve and goes past a tucked away park with a creek running through it. Every time I go past that park I think how nifty it would be if there were to be a bridge over the creek with a path that would take you along the opposite bank. Lo and behold! Today I discovered a bridge and path were there!  A day with a new trail! My favorite kind of day!

Thursday, February 06, 2020


Today consisted of a pjv version of a multi-sport event. Run. Run to exercise class. Spend an hour doing Total Body Fitness (cardio and weights - working out all those bits and pieces of the body not touched by running). Run home. Bus/walk to campus. Work. Walk home. 

I must say, the campus part of my life has been a treat. A good thing, too, since the bulk of my life has involved campus life - as a student, as an entry-level hourly employee, and as a full-time professional staff member. I love variety and working at a university most certainly offers variety: students studying everything under the sun, faculty with a passion for teaching and genius for research, and staff taking care of everything from cleaning toilets, to handling finances, planting trees, heating buildings, feeding the hungry, healing the sick, to developing the computer systems that keep the digital world spinning.

And amid all those busy humans we've got waddling geese and buffalo statuary! 
Campus life: something for everyone!

Wednesday, February 05, 2020

The Life of a (semi) Retiree

I did retire in 2006. But then I went and un-retired in 2014 for a supposedly short-term part-time project helping to set up an Accessibility and Usability testing lab for my former department (IT at CU-Boulder). Somehow I am still working there - with the title of Accessibility Testing Coordinator. Fortunately, it is on a part-time basis with very understanding managers who let me take off whenever I like. Thus I can spend a month at a time in Michigan or complete a quest to run a trail in each of the 50 states. And thus, I keep returning to work.

Also, as a retiree, I seem to take full advantage of the leisurely casual retiree lifestyle and occasionally show up at work in full running gear - with the office as my end-of-run location. Today I had just one short meeting I needed to attend. Originally I thought I would run early then shower and change and go to the meeting. My first reading of this morning's thermometer (3 degrees) and hearing of the forecast (temps climbing to 30) made me re-think my plan. A 9 a.m. run to the meeting, which would likely bring the degrees count up into double digits, seemed to me to be a much more reasonable course of action. It turned out to be an excellent plan. Temperature of 19 degrees and sun peeking out, sparkling off the newly-fallen snow. Oooh lah lah! What a lovely commute to work!