Category Archives: Colorado

And a Happy New Year!

It’s been about a month since we’ve been back in the US, and we’ve been quite busy.

First of all, we tried to surprise Joan and Steve by changing our flight to arrive in Colorado a few days earlier than we had planned. All was going well, even extremely tight layovers where we had to sprint from one terminal gate to another, until we received a text from Joan saying, “Are you in San Francisco?” Thank you Delta for sending her an email. Grr…

We were going to stay the night in Denver and buy a car, but the weather reports told us that the skies would be dumping snow all evening, and if we waited the mountain passes would all be closed and we’d be stuck in Denver until they cleared up.  So, after flying for over 24 hours we made the 4 hour drive to Meeker.  Thank goodness for Seth. He was able to get us there in one piece through tons of snow.  When we finally arrived at Casa de Cobb in Meeker we had been traveling for a good 34 hours. Bali to Singapore, Singapore to Tokyo, Tokyo to San Francisco, San Francisco to Denver, Denver to Meeker. Man oh man, that was a really long day. 

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A Cobb Christmas is always wonderful.  And having it in Colorado is an added bonus for me.  And for the past three Christmases we’ve had snow, so it’s been beautiful.  This Christmas there was an exceptional amount of snow, and the trees were frosted with ice.  It was picturesque.  We took advantage of the snowy weather and made a point to use the snowmobile and sleds.  Seth was nice enough to dump me off the snowmobile leaving me nice and numb.  One day we attached ropes to the back of Steve’s Expedition and went sledding up and down the ranch roads.  Though I’m getting better at holding on, Seth is an expert and can stay on forever.  Mochi really enjoyed chasing us on the sleds.

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Speaking of Mochi, she was so excited to see us.  She bounced up and down and wiggled a whole bunch when we walked in the door.  She’s been stuck to us ever since.  We missed her a lot.

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It was so nice to see Emily and Jess as well.  We cooked delicious meals and shared stories from the time apart. Seth tried his hand at some of the dishes he had learned while traveling, and they were pretty darn good.

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Christmas day was so much fun, and quite a relief for Seth and me.  We had been collecting gifts during the entire trip and we were finally able to give them and tell their stories.  It was so much fun.  Also, we had been collecting ornaments from almost every destination, and it was nice to put those on the tree and tell their stories as well.

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Eventually Christmas was over and Emily and Jess left.  So, it was about time that we took our leave as well, and made our way back to Los Angeles to begin to rebuild a home base.

We were driving two cars back to Los Angeles.  While in Colorado we purchased a brand spankin new Jeep Grand Cherokee, and we still had my tried and true Honda CR-V to take back as well.  The Jeep was well equipped to handle the icy and snowy conditions we faced, but the Honda had Los Angeles summer tires from 2007.  Oops.  After driving it for about 6 hours the snow and ice became really bad and we were down to about 25 mph on I70.  After I watched the car in front of me skid off the road, then back on to face me, Seth and I decided that it was time for him to drive the Honda, because he has way more snow experience.  After a few more hours of driving we broke through the snowy conditions and made it to our halfway stop.

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The next day was easy driving and we made it to Los Angeles without event.  Luckily we have amazing friends, Colin and Amber, we had a place to stay in Los Angeles while we found a place to live.  It was kinda fun having room mates.  It was nice watching movies in the evenings and chit chatting in the mornings.  Mochi might have a different opinion.  Their cat Sarah was not keen on having a furry houseguest and kept Mochi on lockdown.  It was pretty funny watching Mochi stop dead in her tracks when Sarah turned a corner.

After looking at dump after overpriced dump, we finally found a winner.  We now live in a really cool place in Playa Del Rey, with delicious restaurants in walking distance, and a big outdoor patio area.  It’s pretty exciting.  It’s kinda weird having a set home base after being a nomad for six months.  But, it’s also very comforting.  It was always strange referring to a place we’d only stay at for two nights as home.  (i.e. “Let’s go see one more monastery before we go home” or “You know, that 7-11 we passed on our way home yesterday”)

Being back in LA is odd.  It’s exactly the same, but little things have changed.  There are still things I love about LA, like being able to find the same exact okonomiyaki sauce we had in Japan in the Japanese market on Centinela, or knowing how to get places without looking at a map or asking for directions.  But, there are things that drive me mad about LA  the same way they did in the past, like traffic, and the cost of living.  Then there are the things that, to me, are exaggerated from when I left, and will be the reason I leave.  After seeing so much of the world I have been left with a wider lens.  It leaves me frustrated with all the wrong that could easily be right.  We have so much, yet we want for more.  Being in a place like Los Angeles we can’t help but want more.  And then there’s the horrible supercilious conversations you overhear and wonder, “do I sound like that?” Gosh, I hope not.  I could talk for hours about how the trip has changed me and my outlook on the world, but it’s not that kind of blog.

So, Seth has his marvelous job back.  He’s already back to work.  I, thanks to the help of many, will be starting at a new job very soon.  I am really excited to begin my internship to become a marriage and family therapist.

My plan is to keep this blog going and to see how it evolves.  Adjusting to life after travel is interesting.

More Colorado Fun

Wednesday we started off by doing a bunch of Japan planning with Joan.  I am looking forward to Japan with so much anticipation, but it’s going to be a lot of hard work.  So, we debated between hotels, vacation homes, and Ryokans.  We’re still not sure what we’re going to do.  But, one thing we are sure of is that it’s going to be expensive.  I’m looking forward to the food, surprise.

I felt like running around so I slapped on my work out gear and started experimenting.  I wanted to jump rope, but we didn’t have one, so I started with Joan’s hula hoop.  That wasn’t cutting it.  Even with the altitude, I wasn’t breaking a sweat.  I found an extension cord, wrapped it around my hands, and tried to jump rope.  I don’t know if it was the cord or the uneven dirt and grass, but jumping rope wasn’t happening.  I was getting frustrated, so I went into the house to mope.  Seth, jokingly, offered to hop on my back and get carried across the yard at a run.  I said yes.  Now, I didn’t get a picture, and I’m kinda disappointed by this, so I am going to paint a picture for you.  Picture my husband, hopping on my back in proper piggy-back form, me wrapping my arms around his extra long legs and trotting (as fast as I could) across the front yard.  But, that’s not the end of it.  Mochi is always excited for us to join her outside (in ‘her territory’), so when I began running she decided it was a game and began running with us.  But then, the puppies saw what was going on and I think they were kind of confused, that they weren’t completely sure what we were, or what we were doing.  Then they began to chase after us and bark like crazy.  This put Mochi into the defensive, trying to keep the puppies away.  So, there I was, toting Seth on my back, barreling across the yard, with three dogs barking like crazy while circling my feet.  Quite a scene.

Lucky for us, we were able to spend Joan’s birthday with her.  To celebrate we headed over to Glenwood Springs to have lunch at The Pullman.  It happens to be a really good restaurant with really good drinks.  I had the lamb meatballs with feta gnudi.  What the heck is gnudi?  Well, I’m told it’s kinda like gnocchi, but it’s more cheese than potato.  It was really delicious.  I tried a bite of everyone else’s dishes and they were very good as well.  We ran some errands then headed back to Meeker. 

This morning, we woke up and it was already hot.  So, we filled up the baby pool and attacked Mochi with the hose.  Don’t worry, she loves this.  She’s a bit apprehensive at first, so we soak her, then she wants to play.  She streaks after the stream of water and tries to eat it.  It’s awesome.

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Mochi Water Attack

Then, Seth made a picnic lunch to bring up to the ranch.  We had lunch at the ranch with Steve, Joan and some friends then borrowed the 4-wheeler to go for a ride.  Seth, Joan, Mochi and me went for an adventure.  Steve mentioned that they had cleared the fence line, so we decided to check it out.  Adventure.  Bushes, bugs, and branches.  It was like a roller coaster.  But, at the top of one hill I turned to my right to see a herd of about 35 elk spotting us and running away.  Super cool.  And the property is absolutely beautiful.  Then, on our way back, as we passed a puddle, slowing to search for a bear track near it, we heard a splash as we continued on.  After a moment or two, I turned around to check on Mochi in the back like I was doing every so often.  And she was gone.  Seth stops and I frantically hop out.  And she’s right behind the 4-wheeler, but she’s covered in brown sludge.  Gross.  We can’t be sure, but our guess is that when we slowed to check the mud around the puddle for the bear track, Mochi saw the ‘water’ and hopped out for a swim. It was really hot and she’s a fluffy black doggie.  But, what she didn’t know about that puddle, or did but didn’t care, was that this particular puddle is where male elk pee and ‘squirt’ in during mating season.  Gross.  More than gross.  We were running out of gas so we headed back to the office and dunked Mochi in the river.  That wasn’t enough, so when we got back to the house we washed her in the baby pool.

Then we went through our packs.  So, it turns out that it’s going to cost like $600 to send a box of needed items to Africa.  Go figure.  So, we have to carry our sleeping bags and fleece the whole time.  So, we decided to go through our stuff and cut out as much as we could.  I took out a bunch of stuff from my bathroom kit, like 5 of the 7 chapsticks, night face lotion, and things like that.  It was tough, but I think it will be worth it.  I, also, took out one of my dresses.  I think that’s it.  I pick up my smaller sleeping bag from the REI in Denver on our way to the airport tomorrow.

If you couldn’t figure it out, mine is the pile on the left, and Seth’s is the one on the right.

Revised Backpack

We’re off to Denver tomorrow! NYC here we come!


I can only hope that the rest of our trip is as relaxing as our time in Colorado.  Well, I kinda take that back.  Because I was bitten so much yesterday, I woke up in the middle of the night with phantom bug attacks.  Between my itching, my allergies, and I guess altitude sickness, I couldn’t sleep.  So I sneakily got up and hung out in the other room where I couldn’t bother the rest of the sleeping house.  It was about 3am here so it was the perfect time to call my sister in Spain.  Sloane and I talked until the sunrise, when she had to leave to meet a friend for lunch.  We talked about everything and nothing.  But we were also productive.  We did a bunch of trip talk.  I’m so excited to see her!

Finally the rest of the house awakened.  Coffee was a must, so that happened.  We ran a few errands in Meeker before heading to Rifle to see the movie that I’ve been anticipating for the past six months, Brave!  We weren’t sure if we were going to get a chance to see it before we left, so I was stoked.  Really good movie, it was a great story and seemed quite original.  And the Pixar short beforehand was wonderful.  

We headed back to Meeker and made dinner.  Well, Seth made dinner and I helped a bit.  He made a bunch of delicious dishes for dinner, but the greatest part/idea was the watermelon gazpacho.  Perfect for the weather.  I can’t wait to have some of that for lunch! It’s always better the second (or third) time around.

So, we had a nice relaxing day, despite my restless night.  If I get enough sleep tonight I have the option to ride horses tomorrow morning.  

It bit me!

Holy guacamole!! Well, there was no guacamole involved, but it was like we were guacamole, and the bugs were college kids after a night of partying.  We were being eaten alive by bugs! Mostly mosquitoes and houseflies.  Nonetheless, we had a pretty great day 2 in Meeker, Colorado.

In the morning we went up to the ranch with the dogs for a walk by the river.  Boy, was it hot! I was impressed at how hot it was at only 9am.  We walked along the river as the dogs explored the trail and it’s surroundings.  We had to pause at one point because we heard a momma elk sneaking away with her calf.  Pretty cool.  The heat brought us to turn around a little sooner than I would have liked, but the pups were hot.  We tossed Mochi into the pond to cool her off.  



Seth made some delicious sandwiches for lunch, before we went back out to the ranch to shoot and fish.  We spent a bit of time trying to help the ‘problem in the pasture’ before setting up targets.  We shot a bunch with the 22 and the AR15, before the guns were too hot to hold.  It was 94 degrees up at the ranch, which Steve said must be a record.  Either way, Seth and I took off our shoes and hopped into the river to cool off and to try to get away from the mosquitoes.  The water was perfect.  Not as cold as it usually is, but it probably has to do with the low water levels and extreme heat.  Hopefully it rains soon in Colorado.  There are some out of control fires that need it!

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Berkley's AR view

Steve showed up just as we were drying off to go fishing.  So we loaded up the 4 wheeler and headed to a spot we were checking out earlier on our jaunt along the river.  Once again, we waded in the river, but this time we had rods for the fishies.  Seth caught a big ol rainbow trout pretty quickly.  Then Steve got a good sized fish as well.  Seth caught another one, but while he was trying to get the hook out of its mouth, I accidentally let the fish out of the net.  I was tangled in the fly line and was trying to get out! Oops, sorry Seth.  But, somehow in that madness, Seth managed to hook himself.  Steve showed me a nifty way to get hooks out of people by using the fly line itself.  Fun times.


Seth hooks a rainbow


Seth gets Hooked

It was a wonderful Colorado day!