Thursday, October 27, 2016


Here we are once again in Florida, soaking up the sun and running the @#$% out of the air conditioning.  It has been hotter than usual for this time of year but it does beat shoveling snow.  So far we have dodged hurricane Mathew and have enjoyed their 2 days of fall.  It is fun to watch the ladies boots come out along with many residents in hoodies, jackets and sweaters.  Even saw a few pair of gloves when it got down to near 50 degrees last week.  Fall is now over for awhile and we are back in the mid to upper 80's but no storms for us in the near future.

We have visited most of the old waterfront eating establishments and watering holes that we found last year but still have a few more on the bucket list.  In addition we have ran across a few news ones we have added to our list.  You just can't beat fresh seafood that has been caught the same day it is served.

This is the second year Vickie and I have spent our anniversary at the Crab Shack on the river front in New Port Richey.  We enjoyed the afternoon with a couple draft beers and a one pound bucket of fresh peel and eat shrimp.  It is one of those thatch roof dive bars that just keeps calling you back and every time has been as good as the last.

On Monday this week we spent most of the day at John's Pass on Madeira Beach.  For all you Colorado folks it is the Estes Park of the beach world with every kind of shop you can think of.  We headed about 8 miles away to Indian Head Beach to eat lunch at an old favorite of ours, Crabby Bills.  It has been at the same place and ran by the same family for over 30 years.  We had some great shrimp and fried clam strips.

We spent a restful afternoon last week at Sunset Beach in Tarpon Springs and Fred Howard County Park Beach just a short drive north.  Both beaches are full of palms, white sugar sand and beautiful blue ocean.  Neither beach was crowded but it was a week day, a great benefit of being retired.

Last Saturday we found a micro brewery and pub called Big Storm Brewing Co.  It was the first time down here we felt we had a connection to our favorite brew pubs in Colorado.  It was really good beer and they were having their Octoberfest with live bands and lots of people.  We had a great afternoon there with the locals.

We has dinner last night at Sam's Beach Bar in Hudson Beach with friends, Steve and Monica from Indiana who we met last year and enjoyed some great food.  The electricity went off right after we were served and all their computers were down.  We thought we could get out of there for free as they could not run our cards but the service was just to fast on the repairs.  I guess there really isn't such a thing as a free lunch.

Starting next Wednesday Vickie and I will be hosting a coffee hour for the park which we did last year as well and really enjoyed it.  It gives us a chance to met all the new and returning folks as the pour in from all over the U.S. and Canada.

We miss our friends back in Colorado and Indiana and of course the beautiful fall colors.  There was a Great White Egret that hung around Pike Lake in Warsaw, IN were we spent the summer.  I offered it a ride down south but he did not take me up on the offer.  I do think he did just fine without my services as I am sure I saw him fly over early this morning.

Until next time remember to unplug and check out the B-Side of life.

Thursday, September 8, 2016


Well I can't believe it is the first week of September and summer in the mid-west is coming to an end. We have had a great summer revisiting many of the places we hold dear in our hearts from our youth.  Of course there were many places and events we could not visit as many things change over the 33 years we have lived in Colorado.

Warsaw is blessed each summer with nearly 20 life size sculptures placed around the city by a well known artist.  People come from all over northern Indiana to see and photograph these beautiful pieces of art.  I am including several pictures of my favorites in this blog.  In addition there is a free concert in the park on the lake each month all summer long.

A real highlight of our summer was getting tons of fresh produce from one of Vickie's best friends {Barb Cotton) and her husband (Ed).  For the first time in my life I had all the wonderful Indiana tomatoes I could eat and did something I seldom do, gave many away.  We also had fresh lettuce, cabbage, all kind of peppers, sweet corn, three different types of squash, and potatoes.  I even got to dig potatoes for the first time so I know they are fresh.

We where able to go to a great free water ski show right here in Warsaw on Hidden Lake and were pleasantly surprised at the quality of the performance.  It is all local people, mostly youth and you really get a super fun hour long show.  I grew up water skiing but never over a jump or on someone shoulders.

We have been able to open the binds on the picture window in our RV and look out over the lake, watching boats, wildlife and beautiful sunsets.  The wildlife include wild swans, sandhill cranes, white egrets, many species of ducks, whitetail deer and tons of black squirrels to name a few.

We have eaten our way through most of the food we have not been able to find anywhere else so it must be getting close to departure time and head south. We have just three weeks left in Indiana before we hit the road bound for sunny Florida.  We will be returning here again next year to once again roam the hills and lakes of our youth.  I will give you one more update as we prepare for our migration south.  Until then keep an
open mind, open heart and remain unplugged.


Thursday, June 9, 2016


I can't believe we have been back in Indiana for just short of a month.  I don't know where the time goes when you are having fun.  It has been a great time so far as we have a beautiful RV site right on Pike Lake in Warsaw with a lake view and everything we need just a short distance away.

We have already got together with many of our old friends and have made several new ones and have become part of the "Pike Lake Social Club".  We have checked out many of the local eating and drinking establishments and have re-visited several of the lakes we enjoyed growing up in the area.  There are 102 lakes in our county so there is no shortage of water on which to have fun on and around.

One of the big highlights of living in northern Indiana is chowing down on a gigantic breaded tenderloin sandwich.  It is one thing you can't find in Colorado or anywhere else we have traveled.  We have been on a quest to find the best tenderloin in the region so Vickie put out a request for help from our local friends.  You would not believe how many replies she received from her Facebook post with information.  The funniest result is several people heading us to a Chinese restaurant in Milford, Indiana for the best one they had ever had.  We had driven by there several times and had laughed when we saw the sign out front claiming they had a "world famous breaded Tenderloin".  On the opposite side of that same sign it has said "waitress wanted" for well over a year.  I guess we will have to pay them a visit, for the tenderloin - not the job.

I have not had much of a chance to test out the fishing yet but I did catch my first bluegill from the pier the other day.  I usually fish with my brother-in-law (Tom Holloway) however he has had their outboard motor in for a water pump and just got it back.  I'm sure once the two of us combine our talents the fish population will be in great danger.  It is fun to look through my tackle and see rods, reels and baits for surf fishing, bay fishing, trout fishing and bluegill and bass fishing.  I should be hosting a fishing show but I think you have to actually catch something on a regular basis to stay on the air.  Whether you catch a fish or not it is well worth the time you spend on the water creating great memories in your mind.

When you talk about memories I have to mention that I was names after someone from the town I lived in for the first three years of my life - James Dean.  He lived with his aunt and uncle on a farm just outside of Fairmount, Indiana and use to visit our home there from time to time.  I of course was not part of this world yet so did not get a chance to revel in the glory of knowing him but at least I was named after him.  We visited our old town; about 75 miles to the south when I went with my sisters and brother-in-laws to place flowers or our parents and grandparents graves.  They are buried in the same cemetery as James Dean.  The town is also the birthplace of Jim Davis, the creator of Garfield.

There are many fun lake festivals coming up over the summer that we plan to take advantage of and many, many lake still left to explore.  When you grow up on the water it is like being a kid again when you return to the place that, for the most part, made you who and what you are.  It is fun re-discovering things you long ago forgot.  One is that size does matter here!  Your status in life is equal to the size of riding lawn mower you own and how many acres you mow.

I will keep you posted on what we do and where we go over the summer.  Even though we are not in the middle of Amish country this year we have already made the drive north to purchase their special donuts (Amish Crack) and their world famous and cheap cheese.  Come along for the ride, you never know where you may end up when you are unplugged.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016


I can't believe we have been in Colorado for nearly two months and it is time to travel east to the lakes and farmlands of Indiana.  We have had a wonderful time in our hometown and it will be hard to leave but the road calls to us to pull up anchor and set a new course.

We spend the first couple of weeks with our daughter (Gretchen), son-in-law (Bill) and our three grandchildren, Colton, Bailey and Aria in Loveland.  During that time we spent time with our son (Tony), daughter-in-law (Gina) and their two youngest, Brylie and Tatum.  We missed connecting with their oldest daughter (Serena) as she was hard at work at the time.

The next two weeks were spent with friends of twenty-five years, Rick and DeAnn in Fort Collins.  While there we were able to spend time with their kids and their families so it was a great reunion.  We had a wonderful time catching up on all we had missed during the year we spent on the road.

We are ending up our stay back in Loveland in the foothills west of town with two long time friends, Dennis and Bernie Agosta.  It has been a very relaxing way to end up our stay as we can set on the back deck and take in the valley and foothills for miles.  An added bonus is watching the large herd of elk roam the valley floor as we drink a cold one to celebrate the times.  Both of our host joined the ranks of the retired while we were staying here so that was fun showing them the proper way to relax.

It has been amazing at each stop as it gave us time to reconnect, relax and find room to freely move about outside of our 450 sq. ft. RV.  They have all been wonderful hosts and have once again reminded us of just how important it is to have great, long lasting friends and an amazing family.  We will hold beautiful memories of these few weeks until our journey once again bring us back to this special place called Colorado.

We will be heading out this Monday, May 16th and will arrive in Warsaw, Indiana on the 18th.  Our RV site is right on a small lake complete with a beach and great fishing.  We will be there until the end of September at which time we will be heading south to Hudson, Florida for two months and then on the Rockport, Texas for the rest of the winter.  I hope you will come along for the ride as we travel the back roads (B-Side) totally Unplugged from the pressures of the world.

                                                         Till next time - Safe Travels!!!

Friday, April 8, 2016


Well here it is the 8th of April in beautiful Colorado with the Texas Gulf Coast in our rear view mirror.  It has been a whirlwind since we got back in town getting all the doctor, vet, dentist, taxes, and everything else we needed to catch up on.

We left Texas in 80 degree weather and came home to a lovely mix of rain and snow.  Of course that was the same time I had to unload the RV so I got a great welcome home.  As always after that short blast it was back to the beautiful high country weather we love.

The drive up was not the most exciting as Texas looks pretty much the same from south to north on I-35 but at least we missed any bad weather and extremely crazy drivers.  It was good to get back here and realize we have completed our first round trip from Indiana through Florida, Texas and back to Colorado.

Before leaving I took some shots of spring time in South Texas, I hope you enjoy.

We have said good-bye to the tropical south until next year and will enjoy the beauty of Colorado until the 18th of May when we will set sail for the lakes of Indiana and Vickie's 50th class reunion.  Thanks for traveling along!!!

Friday, March 4, 2016


Well we have tasted the social life (wildlife) in the Rockport/Fulton, TX area and decided to checkout a different type of wildlife at the Aransas National Wildlife Refuge.  We traveled north on Hwy 35 for about 40 miles to a whole different look at south Texas.  Our first stop on our self-guided auto tour brought us up close with a good sized gator who didn't mind having his picture taken.  Just up the road we stopped at a large pond and were greeted by a large variety of wild ducks including Blue wing and Green wing Teals.  Across the pond was a very large gator and right behind him two large wild Ferril Pigs appeared right on cue.  They seemed to want to checkout the gator and strolled right up to the big boy.  Lucky for them the gator must of had his lunch already so the pigs lived to root another day.  I'm sure the wildlife managers would have liked to have seen a different outcome as they are trying to eliminate the pigs from the refuge.  Back in the early 1900's Russian Boars were brought in for the benefit of hunters.  The boars inter-mixed with domestic hogs and the Ferril Pigs were created. The problem is they root up many native plants and grasses and are crowding out the native smaller pigs, (Javelinas).

Our next side trip took us about 175 miles to the south to see what the wildlife was like on South Padre Island.  I can see what the college kids like about this place as between every other hotel is a bar and grill and a beach access.  If you have ever been to Clearwater Beach in FL you would find this is the western version of that.  It was a good day but I am glad we landed close to North Padre Island and Mustang Island as it is less crowded and more natural beach to enjoy.

On the way back north to Rockport we were stopped at a US Border Patrol check point. We were greeted by armed uniformed soldiers with drug sniffing dogs.  They spent some time with the car just ahead of us, making a couple trips around with the dogs.  As we stopped and put down the window they looked at us, decided we looked harmless and only asked if we were US citizens.  I was glad the dog knew what he was looking for as I had been toting my fishing gear in the bed of the truck including shrimp for bait.  In addition I had just cracked open a fresh bottle of Ibuprofen so I am glad the dog was off his game.  As we pulled out of the check point we smiled as we knew this is one thing we would not have to add to our bucket list.

Just more fun on the wild side, the B-side and back again.  Until next time remember to glance at the other side of the street from time to time.