I’m Already Frustrated With Boulder

The air conditioning in my hotel room is ten times worse than the one at home. The refrigerator in my hotel room seems to do nothing. I had to trick the WiFi in my hotel room so that I could get my MacBook to connect to the internet (very important because I drafted the 2010 version of the East Atlanta Deadbeat Dads last night). All this and the Colorado InviHash has yet to start! I’ll probably have chatted with the front desk by the time you read this, but as I write it I’m rather frustrated.

Look Ma, 3G!
I can’t believe that I’ve been without 3G coverage for nearly a five days (I think I lost it heading through Iowa, and I know I didn’t see it again until I made it into some populated portion of Colorado). I’m already missing the seemingly super-fast internet connection that I had in Hill City, SD though.

Crazy Windy = No Crazy Horse
There is a certain irony that I traveled to western South Dakota specifically to see Mount Rushmore, and to a lesser extent the Crazy Horse Monument, and that I actually never made it to the premises of either.

My travel from Hill City, SD to Boulder, CO took me right past the Crazy Horse Monument about thirty minutes before it was due to open at 8:00am MDT. However the winds at that time were supposedly gusting up to 20mph (with predictions of up to 40mph for later in the day) so I decided to skip waiting around for the park to open. I took a few long-distance shots which I’ve yet to load up into Lightroom to see how they look.

ITP Flickr Pic
Just some of the mountain lion food pretty deer that I saw in Mount Moriah Cemetery in Deadwood, SD.
Is That A Mountain Lion Behind You?
I have a lone shot of the deer furthest back and right with all of the tumors on it. I share a certain kinship with this deer and have considered posting a close-up of it, though it might gross people out.

Vacation Hits And Misses

  • The weather has been great. It was very windy yesterday and I’ve seen a little rain, but other than that I have no complaints.
  • I really liked South Dakota — although I was there when their weather was its best.
  • I’ve ridden my bike 100 miles (and hopefully am riding when you read this).
  • I really do like driving, and have listened to two audiobooks (thus far) in the process.


  • I need more time. I’ve passed up too many photographic opportunities.
  • I’ve only eaten a couple of really great meals. I’ve tried and failed to find many funky small restaurants.
  • I’ve tried, and failed, “winging” it. I’ve relied on AT&T cell coverage for my discovery of fun and I should have had paper map backup.
  • I’ve only ridden my bike once.
  • I’ve packed things I didn’t need and should have packed a few more of other things.

Have a great weekend everyone.

Stats & Goals
Current Mood – dejected
Current Music – listening to the “Breakfast Club” podcast from CBC Radio 3
Website Of The Day – I’m planning a lot of changes in my life upon returning from vacation next week, including paying attention to Coffee Geek.
Mode Of Transportation To Work – n/a
Exercise (b)Log – nothing
Morning Weigh-In – couldn’t check
Pages Of 1001 Paintings You Must See Before You Die Read – 77

Foot Mileage – 0 miles, Wheel Mileage – 0 miles
Pushups – 0, Situps – 0
Consecutive Days Of Bed-Making (Longest Streak) – 0 (0)
Vegetarian Days – 0, Carnivorous Days – 2
Marta Rides To Work – 0
Bike Rides To Work – 0

September Goals
– Not to get sick for the entire month
– Not get fired from my job
– Ride my bicycle no fewer than 250 miles
– Determine the fate of Sharpened Stone, LLC
– Complete at least one iPhone application (seriously, this needs to happen)
– lose five pounds
– eat vegetarian at least one day a week

2010 Goals
– Reduce my weight to 185 pounds (starting weight was 198 pounds) [update: On July 1 I’ve sadly gained weight; I’m at 203 pounds]
– Completely read the book 1001 Paintings You Must See Before You Die
– Earn at least $150 through photography sales in order to cover the cost for the renewal of the Sharpened Stone.
– Save $500 for the sole purpose of donating to charitable organizations of my choice
– Attend at least one professional photography workshop
– Enter no fewer than three photographic competitions / gallery showings
Get the Black Sheep stats out of Excel and online
Ride in no fewer than two 50 mile or 50K bike rides
– Complete my Taco Mac Passport requirement of 125 beers

The Unmeasurable
– Continue backing up all data, including the off-site storage
– Become a proficient programmer in PHP and CSS Objective-C
– Do not create a solution for something which is not a problem

Paulie [eatl/ga]

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28 Responses to I’m Already Frustrated With Boulder

  1. RanLiCoop says:

    Ask around for the Crepe restaurant in Boulder – you won’t be disappointed – and this is coming from a non-crepe-eating kinda guy.

    After visiting, Boulder seemed like Colorado’s version of NC’s Asheville – if you get to spend more time there, it will probably grow on you…

    Have fun.

  2. Barb says:

    wait – you rode your bike twice on this trip – in KS (or was it MO) and again in SD. Don’t sell your self short.

    I’d like to see the close up of the deer – it wouldn’t gross me out.

    You can never pack & be 100% happy with what you brought, I’ve finally come to that realization.

    We always travel with my atlas – I enjoy just looking at each state as we go thru – seeing what else is around that I might be missing, planning the next stop for gas (okay, bathroom), etc. But – we still don’t own a GPS (for driving), and I really don’t want one.

    And lastly – I hate that we aren’t there – this working all week when we should have been roadtripping & vacationing has been quite the bummer. I am taking a half day today – just to do it.

  3. Crepes a la Carte or Crepes to Go-Go? I’ll seek one of these out this morning. Thanks.

    I’m sure my Boulder experience has been tainted by my hotel room’s malfunctioning “amenities.” I’m also not sure if I’m ready to be around a lot of hashers I don’t know after being virtually alone for seven days as well.

    I rode in Missouri (Lee’s Summit), one ride in South Dakota (Hill City). I’m trying to find a suitable ride in Boulder for later today. I’ll need the exercise before tonight’s pub crawl.

    My GPS has worked okay, though I think Garmin needs to send someone to South Dakota to drive the routes recommended. Let’s just say there were moments where human judgement and manual override were necessary. I did start to wonder what would happen if I broke down in rural South Dakota / Wyoming where I didn’t have the slightest of cell phone coverage — lock the car and start riding my bike to a town I suppose. The cell phone has really changed our behaviors and we’ve really become reliant on them.

    Barb, I’ve uploaded a shot of the deer with tumors (?) to here. The photo is not as sharp as I’d like it to be, or even as sharp as I remembered it being a few days ago, but there you go.

  4. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Well one of my biggest nightmares just came true. While driving to breakfast the Jackmobile’s Check Engine light came on at at red light. Just before it did my breaking for the red light felt weird, and the D on rhe dashboard started flashing green. Like The Car Guys say, I pulled over immediately and an now going to call AAA. Fuck.

  5. Barb says:

    At least you are in a decent size city and it is a week day.
    Hopefully it is nothing.
    What is the D on the dashboard? Or, do you mean the D for Drive?

  6. Jenka says:

    I have a Honda, too. The check engine light comes on every certain number of miles. If you Google “honda check engine light” or the like, you’ll get a variety of fixes for it.

  7. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Yeah the ‘D’ for Drive on the dashboard.

    I’d be less concerned if it didn’t act funny just prior to the light illuminating, if I hadn’t just driven it 2200 miles, and I weren’t still 1500 miles from home.

  8. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Oh SHIT!

    Googling the symptoms is leading in the direction of transmission problems (actually what I feared).

  9. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    At a mechanic now. Fingers crossed that this doesn’t turn into a repair expensive enough to fix my plumbing…

  10. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    And I have to admit that although I am *trying* to be positive this has really put a dent into this trip.

  11. Barb says:

    If it is as much as your plumbing – you might as well buy a whole new car!!!
    I’m keeping my fingers crossed.
    I’m leaving in a few minutes for the day, I’ll check back later to see the update.

  12. Steve says:

    See if you can contact mis-management and ask if they know a good Honda mechanic.

    Or use this suggestion from the Car Talk website:

    Hoshi Motors (over 30 reviews)
    2504 Spruce Street ,
    Boulder, CO 80302
    (303) 449-6632

    Good Luck.


  13. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Both the local dealer and Hoshi were booked solid until 9/13. I’m at a place called Canton Auto now.

  14. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    Whoops, make that Canyon Auto.

  15. bob says:

    Dude, that sucks! You may really need that pub crawl tonight

  16. Yep, sucks big time:

    – The shop will be taking the transmission pan off and looking for metal in the fluid. If found, they’ll have to replace the transmission with a rebuilt one. Worst case scenario is $3k.

    – I was planning on blowing out of town Monday morning. That’s not going to happen now if the transmission needs to be replaced. Earliest best guess is that it wouldn’t be ready before Tues/Wed.

    – That means I’ll have to fork out even more money for hotels (this has turned into an EXPENSIVE trip) as well as having to work something out with work because I was supposed to be back in the office on next Thursday.

    Overall I am really bummed now and I’m not sure even the hash can rectify this feeling.

  17. Yep, The Jackmobile is going to need a new transmission. Hello expensive repair and hello Boulder, CO for a few days more than planned.

  18. RanLiCoop says:

    Damn, that sucks Paulie! Is it time to bike the 2 miles into town and find a bar & hotel? I would probably find the hotel first, because I doubt you are going to want to leave the bar once you get there.

    Hopefully one of the rooftop bars in Boulder will help with attitude adjustment:

    Keep us updated.

  19. Yeah, without the added expense of two more hotel nights in Boulder this is going to cost me over $3000.

    I’m in the hash hotel (and looks I will be until sometime Wednesday) already. Kegs get tapped at noon local.

    On a positive note, maintenance just installed a new air conditioner in my hotel room. So, at least I have that going for me…

  20. bob says:

    ” maintenance just installed a new air conditioner in my hotel room. So, at least I have that going for me…”

    Look at you being all positive!

    Sucks about the car, but being stranded in Boulder CO can’t be all that bad. Thankfully it didn’t happen in BFE SD.

  21. I don’t think I’ll be applying to the Optimists’ Club any time soon, but I’m trying to put a positive spin on this debacle.

  22. RanLiCoop says:

    A couple of Colorado brews might help with the positive spin. Any idea what’s on tap?

  23. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    To my surprise it’s not Ska Brewery this time around. I should’ve taken a photo of the tap. El Norte perhaps? I’m drinking a “Mexican Amber”.

  24. Paulie [eatl/ga] says:

    I just looked it up, it’s Del Norte.

    And I can’t believe that I forgot my lanyard! FAIL!

  25. Steve says:

    Sorry to hear the prognosis on the Jackmobile. Hang tough and just try to enjoy yourself at the hash. Who knows, it might just be an opportunity… more time in a nice place.

  26. The car situation still sucks, but a silver lining has emerged. My boss is flying to Denver on Tuesday for meetings regarding one of my projects. So, I’ll be able to salvage a vacation day or two by joining him in the meetings.

  27. RanLiCoop says:

    Attending meetings = silver lining????

    OK, I guess it is better than burning vacation days – that way you can wander up to NC for a long weekend 🙂

    Have a great weekend, WLB.

    Hope the car situation turns out OK. On-On!

  28. Yeah, this might save me a day or two and some cash as well. Though I’ll have to cut out all of the fun on my drive home so that I can get back to Atlanta ASAP.

    Lemons not turned in to lemonade, but I’m trying.

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