Confusion

Beautiful morning following yesterdays storms. As I opened my eyes I could see golden light streaming through the autumn color of the aspen trees outside and smell the scent of pine in the gentle breeze coming through the open window. A whole flock of sparrows and finches made a pit stop in our tree this morning on their southward journey and the bird song from so many different types of birds was amazing. We had yellow finches, red finches, sparrows and birds I had never heard before. But the peace of dawn belied the storm going on in real life.

This afternoon as I sit in the waiting room at the radiation clinic I am contemplating the wacky dream I had last night. As my head hit the pillow I was thinking of paying the bills, calling the oxygen tank place to make sure we don’t run out of air for my best friend of 25 years fighting for her life with cancer in her lungs. Worrying that the cell phone was going to run out of minutes and I wouldn’t be able to make the appointments, which of course is a ridiculous thing to fret over since worst case all I would have to do is walk 50 feet to the neighbor’s house. But it is an amazing thing the kinds of things that whirl around in a stressed out person’s head at bedtime.

So the funny thing is that my mind apparently merged it all together to provide me with a vivid and exhausting nightmare. For some reason in my nightmare world cell phones had been converted to run on oxygen tanks and the huge increase in demand for oxygen had caused a shortage. So I was running around all night trying to find oxygen tanks so the phone would work.

But for today I sit in the waiting room in the eye of the storm with a few minutes of peace to write this blog, hoping and praying that this radiation therapy works as advertised. Praying that real peace will be restored to our lives so I can get back to the business of hiking and taking pictures.

Advertisements

Autumnal Equinox

Autumn, my favorite time of year in the mountains. Today is the day that the sun passes the equator on it’s journey south for the winter, officially know as the autumnal equinox. In Colorado it’s the time of year that the rainstorms decrease in frequency and the leaves begin to take on autumn gold. In the high country the leaves have often achieved their peak color by this time and this year is no different. As I look at the high mountainsides on Pikes Peak I can see gold and hope that I get a chance to climb up there before the wind and the snow spoil the show.

Autumn

Pikes Peak autumn

So far it has been a busy fall in Woodland Park with a bike race, an ultra marathon, the Cruise Above the Clouds car show, and finally this weekend the pinnacle of autumn, Oktoberfest. I am thankful that for the first time since I took up residence in this beautiful town all the forces converged to allow me to attend. There were a few wrinkles in my morning that threatened to overcome my plans, but the storm clouds held back and I had a great time enjoying some German cuisine.

Today I am basking in the satisfaction of having my fifth “Newsworthy” article published on the Examiner and sorting through a pot full of images from the bounty of events this season. According to the weatherman clouds and rain will remain with us all day, giving me plenty of time to sort through the pictures. I am looking forward to fleshing out my “Festivals” album on the S. W. Krull Imaging facebook page and hopefully sending a few up to my stock agencies.

Tomorrow will be sunny and with any luck the day will find me with my hiking boots on in the midst of Rocky Mountain autumn color.

Irony

A beautiful morning this Friday, and a perfect day for Jill Howard to head to Utah for her valiant attempt at a Boston Marathon qualifying time in the Top of Utah Marathon. As I had mentioned in an earlier blog I was going to step out of my comfort zone in my Examiner reporting role by reaching out and doing a story on someone instead of just places and events. My first interview report was published this week and is now available on the Examiner online. Jill has been on a two and a half year journey through a life threatening illness and back again. Her recovery has been fast and remarkable and tomorrow she will show the world that she is back.

It was ironic though that I finished up the story on Jill’s recovery from brain surgery in the waiting room of the hospital while my friend of 25 years and life partner was on the MRI table getting a spine and brain scan to look for cancer. Today as Jill heads for Utah I will head for Colorado Springs to get the results of the MRI and wait while my friend gets mapped for radiation therapy. It will be a long day for us and there are a lot of long days ahead of us with ten straight days of radiation treatment to endure.

God is good and God is merciful, so I hope that in a few months I will be writing another Examiner success story about a miraculous recovery. In the meantime I am learning to take the days one at a time, living by Jesus’ advice that “Today’s worries are sufficient for the day.”.

It looks to be a glorious weekend in the mountains and I am looking forward to the big Oktoberfest celebration in Woodland Park. I have missed it every year that I have been here for one reason or another, but this year I am determined to attend. Be sure to subscribe to my Examiner column so you won’t miss my report on the festivities! It’s free and you will receive an email each time I publish a new article!

Perfect Weekend

It would be hard to imagine a more perfect weekend. The sun was shining and the sky was the amazing blue color that can only be matched high in the Rocky Mountains. The cool mountain air was perfectly still and the Cruise Above the Clouds car show rolled into town early in the morning on Saturday.

So I grabbed my camera and headed over to the park to capture some images from the day. The cars were magnificent this year with beautifully polished muscle cars from the 60’s and 70’s on display with hoods open to show off beautiful Chrome engine parts.

Top top it off, the Senior Center was putting on their monthly pancake breakfast which I could not resist. Nothing better than scrambled eggs, pancakes, sausage, buscuits and gravy and orange juice on a perfect early autumn day in the Rockies.

Cruise Above the Clouds rolls into Woodland Park, Colorado

The weather on Sunday was just as good and the weekend was perfected when my article on the car festival was accepted as newsworthy at the Examiner.com. With that, I decided to take the rest of the afternoon off to just sit and watch my cats play in yard before retiring for some movie watching on the TV.

Today it’s back to work though… I have pictures to process from the car show for iStock and my new facebook picture album that I created for posting pictures of festivals that I am reporting on for my Examiner writing. So stay tuned, for S. W. Krull Imaging, the car show isn’t over with yet!

Newsworthy

S. W. Krull Imaging got off to an exciting start today. Got an email from the Examiner telling me that I have achieved “newsworthy” status. I have finally published enough articles considered newsworthy to upgrade my account status. What it means to me is that my articles are eligible to be promoted by the Examiner. Fortunately for me there have been a number of interesting activities hosted by Woodland Park lately, including the USA Pro Challenge bike event and the Veterans motorcycle Salute to Veterans ride to Cripple Creek.

I always like this time of year in the mountains. The air begins to cool and dry out and the fall colors come early at 9000 feet. Best of all however are the great fall festivals. Oktoberfest is my favorite celebration in the mountains and this year I am not going to miss the event in Woodland Park. Nothing better than the smell of brats sizzling on the grill filling the crisp mountain air with their tantalizing aroma.

Oktoberfest in Breckenridge Colorado

Oktoberfest in Breckenridge Colorado

Woodland Park is not the only mountain town to be celebrating autumn, so be sure to check out my Oktoberfest article on the Examiner to get the details on the event nearest your home. Also stay tuned as I attend the Cruise Above the Clouds vintage car show in Woodland Park this weekend and make my annual pilgrimage to the higher elevations to capture autumn gold as the aspen trees prepare for the long Rocky Mountain Winter.

 

End of Summer

The Labor Day weekend is a bittersweet time where I live, especially the Monday holiday. It is unofficial end of summer and the highway through town will be jammed with cars and pickups pulling camper trailers. Thousands will stream out of the mountains to head back to their homes in the cities and plains of the Midwestern states to start school and go back to their jobs. It will be a good day to avoid the highways and byways and to just stay home and get things done around the house.

The mountains will become quiet and a peaceful cool will settle in as autumn sets in. This is my favorite time of year for photography as the aspen trees change and the mountains take on their mantle of gold before becoming covered in winter’s blanket of white. Fall is my favorite time in the mountains. The storms of summer will come to an end and the days will be filled with beautiful late summer sunshine providing excellent lighting for landscape photography. I like to get out during the week to enjoy the solitude of the workweek when even the weekenders are absent from my favorite places.

I also look forward to participating in many of autumns great events. This year I plan to attend Oktoberfest in Woodland Park and we are going to have our own ultra marathon in the Pike National Forest not too far north of town. And I am already looking forward to my annual hike up the Crystal Falls Trail to Crystal Reservoir to see the colors on the big Peak.

Today however, winter and snow are on my mind and on this crazy day on the roadways I will stay home and make preparations for the inevitable onslaught of white.