“Today is the first day I’ve gone braless in public without the security of a sweater or my wool shirt, mainly because it’s just too hot here in Colorado to wear them.  I did feel self conscious because I’m not very small chested but I was assured by my daughter and husband that I would be okay and that I didn’t look terrible. And I was okay.  At $20-50 a pop, I think I’ll quit spending money trying different styles and just let it go.”

I wrote the above on November 8th while in Grand Junction, Colorado.  I had been feeling some painful “hot spots” in my right breast and thought I should probably just go without wearing one any more.  I spent most of the trip from Anchorage to Michigan with no bra and was very comfortable, especially with my cozy sweater over all for a layer of camouflage.  Since wearing a bra again, my ladies were NOT happy.  I would guess that if a man were made to wear a jock strap for hours on end, day after day, his balls would probably feel about the same.  Or not.  I don’t have balls so I don’t know.

So, it’s been a few more weeks and everything is settling down and I feel pretty comfortable.  The pain is gone and as far as I can tell, nobody really gives a damn what my boobs are doing under my shirt.  I felt so self conscious about it, I still do, but it’s getting easier.  I think mostly it was other women who I was concerned I’d see unkind looks from but so far I haven’t seen anything.  Not one look or sidelong glance.  I’m glad, too!   I know what I would have to say if I ever did have a disapproving look directed at me and that would be a faux sad sigh and “Doctor’s orders.”  Which isn’t entirely true, but neither is it untrue.  I’ve had some scary incidences which resulted in a biopsy, and more recently having to “stay after” a mammogram and have an ultrasound done.  I asked the doc if there was anything I could do to keep my breasts healthy, specifically regarding bras because they seem to bother me, and she said that if I’m comfortable, I could consider not wearing one.  Among other things, of course.  But, you know.  I’m cleared for public flopping.  Just one more piece for my eccentricity puzzle.

Ramble On

After spending almost two weeks in Colorado, we woke up this morning with chilled toes and cold noses, the rest of us being ensconced within our layers of flannel and wool.  It had been warm during the days, well into the 60’s, and only recently dropping into the 30’s at night, but last night hovered close to freezing temps.  Time to move on to our next destination, Texas.

While spending time with family here on the Western Slope we had also taken a weekend trip to my old stomping grounds of Colorado Springs, on the Front Range.  Here we spent time with my good friend, Jennifer and her boyfriend, Taylor, and drove around like tourists looking for yard sales in Old Colorado City and Manitou Springs.  Robert enjoyed the many fine examples of neon workmanship announcing the presence of dining rooms and motels, and some not so fine remains of what had been beautiful signs that had been allowed to rust and decay.  I had some issues finding my way around town since some landmarks have been replaced by new growth, but by the end of our stay I was getting my bearings again.

Rocky Mountain Bighorn Sheep on the way to Colorado Springs on Hwy 50

Our trip had another purpose, and that was for us to reconnaissance a possible suitable route through the mountains.  The last time we had come to Grand Junction to visit, we took Highway 50 over Monarch Pass on our way to Texas.  This is a daunting idea with such a heavy trailer, especially after our experience with the Pink Mountain Debacle.  Long and steep is the approach to the pass, with many curves, and the off side is brutal on brakes.  I used to visit my Dad when he lived near Crestone in the San Luis Valley and I would take a less traveled road which I remembered had more gradual grades and a lower altitude pass, Highway 114.  So we checked it out on our way to the Springs, sans trailer, and it seems to be our path of choice.  We’ll head south through the San Luis Valley and over towards Raton Pass, another area of concern, but after that we’ll be on (mostly/comparatively) flat land.  The caveat being, we need to leave before any precipitation hits those mountain passes, because if it gets snowy and icy, we’ll need to go through Utah and down to Arizona instead.  So far, so good…fingers crossed!

A view of South Park from Wilkerson Pass on Hwy 24

After our visit, we took a different route going back to Junction, taking Highway 24 through South Park and meeting up with I-70 at Minturn.  Just outside of Minturn is the abandoned mining town of Gilman, where we stopped to take some pics.  I reckon the stream flowing below the mine has got some placer gold in’t.

Gilman. I’d pan that.

There was another couple also at the pull off, who asked where in Alaska we were from (our license plates are a conversation piece, we’ve found!) and we told them and lo and behold, they were from Alaska originally and just moved down here a couple years ago!  I didn’t get their names but the guy is a two time Iditarod musher.  Yeah, because who else do you meet on a secondary road pull off, but an Alaskan musher?  Sorry, guy.  I wish I had asked yall’s names!

Mushers gonna mush

Yesterday, we went grocery shopping and sanitized our freshwater tank, today we’ve rinsed and filled the tank with good Colorado water and I’ll be packing up for an early departure in the morning.  We’ve both had such a good time in Colorado, it seems a shame to leave.  We’ve had fun spending time with our little grandchildren and the kids, as well as with friends.  However, the nip in the air is undeniable, and there will be Thanksgiving dinner with Robert’s family in a couple of weeks, so it’s time to ramble on.