Friday, August 13, 2010

Thursday August 12, 2010-Garden of the Gods Campground

Today we planned to make our last museum trips so that we could have Friday and Saturday to just lay around and get ready to leave on Sunday morning. The first thing we did was to take the truck back to the Chevrolet dealer because the low coolant light had come back on. Our friendly service advisor, Kevin, was off this week but one of the others took our information and the keys to the truck and we went into the lounge to wait. After about an hour, he came back and said they had found the problem, an apparent "bubble" in the coolant reservoir. When the bubble burst, it showed a low coolant level which was easily corrected.

We returned to the trailer and found that Tyler was already up and ready to go! That was a surprise. I figured he would still be piled up in the bed, but he fooled me. We piddled around the trailer for awhile, but left right after noon for the Peterson Air Force Museum on the Air Force base of the same name. It is all the way across town, and when we got there, it was just beginning to rain. We had been watching the rainstorm come across the mountains and it got here about the time we got here. When we finally got to the gate, we learned that we would need a pass to go to the museum. We had visited the Wright Patterson Air Force Base last year to see the large museum there and had not been required to get a pass, but I forgot that this is the home of the NORAD and a working air base. We also learned that most of the museum displays are outside, so with rain imminent, we decided to try the last museum in our bucket list, the May Natural History Museum.

We drove to the opposite side of town for this museum through the rain most of the way. When we got there, we learned that it is at the May RV Park, out in the boonies above Manitou Springs. The park is remote and has signs posted to beware of the bears, and I noticed the bear-proof dumpsters that are surrounded by barbed wire. I suppose that if you wanted to actually see bears and other wildlife right in the RV park, this would be the place to go. The park is in pretty bad shape, with washed out roads and limited amenities. They do have pull through, full hook up sites, but no wifi or cable TV available. We might change our mind about staying here I guess when you live in your trailer, you can't call it camping any more, can you?) but they will have to improve the park some before we do.

The museum was a huge collection of insects that were collected throughout the world by the campground owner's great grandfather. There were thousands of insects from tiny tsetse flies to gigantic 17 inch stick insect that looks like a pile of sticks until it moves. There were several varieties of deadly insects and a couple of tarantulas with hummingbirds clutched in their grasp. Almost as amazing as the thousands of perfectly preserved insects was the perfectly handwritten identification tags written in tiny script. The earliest date that I noticed was 1916, and after reading a bit about the displays, there are likely some with earlier dates. I'll be honest, after looking for about 30 minutes, I got tired of looking at bugs. Cam and I went out to the lobby area to wait on MeMaw and Tyler. When they got done, we went over into the Space Museum, which is a large collection of documents, newspaper clippings and models of the space exploration from the earliest times. The museum is in a ratty old building but the information was interesting and I am glad we went.

We didn't map this trip out very well because we went all the way back to where the AFB was to the boy's favorite restaurant here, the Ultimate Buffet. We had our last nice supper out (as of this writing. I can be outvoted about eating out) and returned home. The boys went out to ride their ripsticks and Stella and I chilled out here.

We should finish up our museums tomorrow, so stay tuned.

So long.

No comments: