Sunday, June 30, 2013

[jules' pics] relations

The funny thing about James is that he doesn't look much like either his sister or his brother. Thus I've always imagined he was orphaned in Ayr market square and the Mother In Law took him home like she might a bird with a broken wing. However, there can be no doubt that there is significant family resemblance on both sides. I already blogged the paternal side, but the maternal side is possibly even more concerning.

Mother and Son

Posted By Blogger to jules' pics at 6/30/2013 03:53:00 PM

Friday, June 28, 2013

[jules' pics] Precipitation

My last post may have given very slightly the wrong impression. No, it wasn't photoshopped (I don't use photoshop). Rather, it was stuffed. The reason being that it was raining as we headed in to Yellowstone, so we spent a few hours at the excellent Buffalo Bill museum in Cody. As we ascended from Cody, the rain turned to snow.
Snowy pass, Yellowstone
I was very much looking forward to seeing the geysers with a snowy backdrop, but my travelling companions, who ought to have been feeling very much at home in the rain and snow, were surprisingly troubled. However, as we descended from the pass, towards Yellowstone Lake, the snow quickly disappeared, and we were back to rain.

Only the best for the inlaws, so the night was spent at Yellowstone Lake Hotel.
Lake Yellowstone Hotel
Not outside a Starbucks (of which there are none in Yellowstone), but here is a close-up of one of the funny Yellowstone buses.
Car at Lake Yellowstone Hotel
And this desolate image, from on the shores of Lake Yellowstone, can only be called "Like Father Like Son".
Like Father Like Son

Posted By Blogger to jules' pics at 6/28/2013 11:22:00 AM

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

[jules' pics] Pronghorn

They are neither deer not antelope, but, nevertheless, they bounce all over Wyoming. On this trip they were a bit easier to photograph than usual. Perhaps because they were either preggers or looking after their unbearably cute babies. But I wasn't expecting to get quite this close.

Posted By Blogger to jules' pics at 6/26/2013 10:02:00 AM

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

[jules' pics] Wyoming

All Scottish roads are narrow and wiggly. This is because the Romans couldn't cope with the climate or the locals. Thus the inlaws couldn't imagine how we planned to drive hundreds of miles a day. But it didn't take too long before they began to understand.
Wyoming in green!
Wyoming too was being extremely green, which added a new dimension to the minimalist design of the state.

For some of the afternoon there was only one dwelling in view. It is not unheard of for a British castle to be relocated, but in such cases the appropriate phrase applied to the procedure is is "brick-by-brick". Not so in Wyoming.
Moving house
The house was not travelling slowly enough to delay us much, and we reached Thermopolis late afternoon. I tried to explain that "as Blackpool is to Disneyland, Thermopolis is to Yellowstone", but I don't think that any of my travelling companions had visited either Blackpool or Disneyland. So instead, in order to avoid their future disappointment, I lied and told them that Yellowstone had nothing on Thermopolis. It is after all, home of the world's largest hot mineral spring! Here it is.
Thermopolis mineral hot spring
Dinner was Wyoming leopard pie back at the hotel.
Days Inn

Posted By Blogger to jules' pics at 6/25/2013 11:34:00 AM

Monday, June 24, 2013

[jules' pics] Chautauqua Park

Quick! Must start blogging before the season changes beyond recognition.
First stop after the inlaws arrived: refuelling in the historical dining room (almost as old as the inlaws own house in sunny Scotland) before exploring Chautauqua Park in Boulder.
I've never seen the area looking so green. Apparently spring was late this year.
The mother in law knows all about botany and zoology and geology and under her tutelage it soon became apparent to me that not only are all blue flowers are not the same, but there are so many different sorts of yellow flowers that the whole holiday could have been taken up with working them out properly.
Amazingly we also saw a huge black bear, with a ranger's rifle pointed at its head. It was injured, so had come down to the park to graze on some of the sacrificial pet dogs that Boulder people like to drag around with them.

Posted By Blogger to jules' pics at 6/24/2013 09:49:00 AM

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Boulder Dash

As I think we mentioned, we've been away on holiday for some time - and I'm sure some pictures will start to make an appearance quite soon. Since the summer holiday season seems to start around Memorial Day, we had arranged to be in Boulder for the Bolder Boulder race on that day. We'd had fun doing this two years ago, just as we were starting to run quite regularly. So we entered again.

The week we had in Boulder prior to the race was long enough to realise how hard the altitude would make things, but not enough to acclimatise to it. So we knew we were not going to be fast. A few days before the event, I got an email from the organisers offering me a free t-shirt if I ran under 40 minutes, which seemed a bit of a cruel tease. By half way round it was clear that I wasn't going to be breaking any records (even personal ones) but I managed to pace myself to my minimal goal of running faster in minutes than my age in years, which is one achievement that should get easier in the future. One drawback of starting in an early start wave (with my starting position being based on results in flat races at sea level) was that plenty of people overtook me on the way round. My time of 43:42 was by some way my slowest 10k run since the previous Bolder Boulder. Jules also was several mins quicker than before at 55:52.

Back in Japan now and summer is coming...we'll not be racing for a few months, though at least the run to work is mostly shaded by trees.