Monday, January 1, 2018

2017 Christmas letter part II

  Well I am back to finish off this years report on our activities. It is after Christmas and almost New Years as I peck away at this while it is snowing outdoors and near zero to boot. Tomorrow Jan and I will be traveling to Wadena to the funeral of our brother-in-law Steve Johnson, assuming the roads are not too bad. Jan plans on staying with her sister Paula for a few days while I return home for a check up in Rochester next week. Winter in this part of the country is always filled with uncertainties when plans are made in advance. Actually this is more of an audit of our lives during the year as opposed to an actual Christmas letter.
  I believe that I left off before in June so July would be next. We were still in Lanesboro with the trailer. I had brought along our new Bonneville and managed to get some riding in over in Wisconsin and the local area. Did I mention the goats before? Jan is out at Eli and Lindsey's farm looking after them most days, her younger goats as opposed to the older one at home. We did get to a soccer game, a check up at Mayo, and me to a PGR mission. Jan was called over to the home to sit with her Mom who was now on hospice care. Jan spent the day and night with her as she made the transition from this life of joy and pain to the next one that promises to be much better. Bernice Emma Thielhorn joins her husband Fred Leroy who passed away in 2000. She was 92 years old and had been in failing health for the last few years. She left behind her daughters, my wife Jan and Paula Johnson. A man could not have asked for better in laws than Fritz and Bernice. I don't think that I will ever forget church in Alpha and "dinner" at her place afterwards with fried chicken, sweet corn, milk gravy and boiled potatoes, you get the picture? Anyhow, pretty much a life well lived for a farm girl from rural Minnesota that married her sweetheart when he returned from The War, raised two daughters, accepted two sons-in-law welcomed five grandchildren and four great grandchildren. Our daughter Rachel flew home for her funeral and later in the month we picked up her daughter Annika, who came for a week long stay. On a subject that everybody our age starts to get accustomed to are doctor visits for our selves and our parents assuming they are still with us. Thank goodness that does it for July. The first part of August found us driving to the Cities to meet the rest of Annika's family, home from Washington, D.C.. I did spend some time putzing with assorted bikes during this time too. My brother Phil and I took our Mom to the doctor one morning for a check up, she has been falling a lot lately, and by noon she was a resident at the rest home here in town. She is there to this day. In the interim I sold her car, and Jan and I cleaned out her house and got it on the market. It would be nice if it sold soon so that problem would be out of our hair, so to speak. On the 21st Jan and I drove down to the former Fairmont Army Air Field outside Fairmont, Nebraska along with half the drivers in the upper Midwest I think. From Omaha west it was bumper to bumper creeping down I-80. I was afraid that we would not get to the site I wanted to set up in and have to get off and head south trying to get into the path of totality. We did make it to the Air Field in time and parked next to some serious watchers with lots of gear. This is an experience that never fails to awe anyone that sees it. The two that I have seen before, we were the only people visible in any direction but not this time! Anything else that month was anti-climactic. So on to September. After Labor Day I rode west again with the GS out across Wyoming into northern Utah with idea of going as far as eastern Nevada, but the smoke from forest fires was so bad the visibility was under a mile in places and it was getting warm. From Logan south to Salt Lake City you couldn't even see the lake, so I detoured into northern Colorado and made my way home. The grandkids are keeping us running to soccer and volleyball games, and Jan and I are cleaning up Mom's house and taking care of her goats too. Football has started so we hosted a game at our place on a warm and sunny Sunday. Jan and I drove up to Wadena to spend a night with Paula and Steve and stopped at Leah's soccer game in Gibbon on the way home. My two brothers Phil and Paul and I took our Mom out for lunch for her birthday on the 29th, she's 97. October started with a lot of rain and cooling temperatures. I was helping Eli with some power trouble for the shop and he scored a 351 and transmission for the 64 Falcon he got from a friend, it's a work in progress. About that time Jan and I headed east for the DeFors house in Burke, Virginia. It's always about a two and a half day trip going out due to the fact I don't want to end a long day on the road in that kind of traffic on a two day trip, coming home showing up here tired is not such a big deal. Rachel, Jan and I did get down to the Vietnam Wall one day. I have been there several times but it never fails to impress, as I know a couple of names on the Wall. We stayed about a week and went home to more cleaning at Mom's house and a birthday party for Sam at his house in Rochester. We had some of our cedar siding replaced on the east and west ends of the house as it was looking tough in a few spots. I guess that is not bad life for the product which is 5/8 inch rough sawn cedar plywood that was first put up in 1975. I did get my Mom's car sold about as soon as I put it out in the driveway with a for sale sign, one less thing to think about. Jan and I were back and forth to the farm, Jan with goat trouble and me helping out with things. We are into November now and the weather cooled off naturally. We are still following our grandkiddos around to assorted activities, luckily gas is staying down somewhat. I did have a couple bikes out when there was a small window of nice weather. Jan has been seeing doctors at New Ulm for assorted pains, and we were to Rochester for Thanksgiving at the Theobalds. It did stay nice enough to be able to vacuum up leaves yet. December saw us moving Mom's stuff into a storage unit that I lined up the end of November. The house is essentially empty now and ready to put on the market. which I did a week later. I did make it to a couple of PGR missions after that. One in Fairmont for a USAF pilot who had flown B-52s, B-57s in VN among several types during his career. Jan and I were back to Rochester for Sam and Gus' Christmas program and I caught a PGR mission in Byron the next day. I spent some time in Eli's shop trying to get that old Falcon apart, with some success. On the 22nd we received word that our brother in law Steve Johnson had passed away. Christmas eve found us at St. Pauls' for Leah and Aaron's program. We had Christmas on Christmas day at the farm with both of my brothers and their wives, two of our children and their families. Just missing the DeFors this year as they stayed in the D.C. area. I don't blame them the weather has really turned brutally cold and some snow now too. Jan and I drove up to Wadena for Steve's funeral on Saturday in below zero temperatures. The entire funeral was indoors at their church and he was cremated so no burial is planned. They are going to spread his ashes at his golf course from an "urn" that looks like a red and white fishing bobber. We all got together at their house with the bobber in the middle of the table and it is very cool how not uncomfortable it was to have him right there. Anyhow, the next morning I did manage to get the truck started at -27, dropped Jan off at her sister's house and headed home. So that pretty much ties things up on this end. I know that I have probably skipped over a lot of details in this edition but there is a limit on how much detail I want on the web. I know that you all will just be dying to see the next chapter sometime in the new year. Have a happy New Year.
                             Pete 1-1-18  

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

2017 Kuehl's Christmas letter part 1

    I have spent the last several months trying to get up the ambition to do some blogs since my last one in June. I think that I put another 5000 miles on the GS since that note but who's counting. So this will start my usual rambling narrative of the past year, although I am going to cut back on the rambling some. January, what can I say but the weather was on and off nasty, freezing rain, snow and cold, and bad roads. Jan and I were following Sam around for his basketball games in the Rochester area and also Leah and Aaron for their basketball games. Jan has been out at the farm helping out as I have at times also. I also started on a model of a Ducati Panigale 1199. I spent a lot of time on this one and if you look back in my blogs you can see the end result. I may include a photo. Jan also runs over to Windom to visit her Mom at the home on a regular basis. A trip to the dentist made another trip to Rochester required, he found a suspicious spot, so I had another biopsy done at Rochester. It must have been ok because I don't see any other notes. February started out with Jan and I on the road east bound again headed for Burke, Virginia. Hans' work has been taking him to Hawaii and this time he was taking Rachel along, so we were watching their gang for the coming week. We did some touring in that area, which is rich with Civil war sites among other things. We did manage to see Josiah play some basketball too, thank God for gps, I don't know how you navigate in that part of the world without it. Actually, the only place that I do use gps is in cities that I am unfamiliar with. About the time we returned home we had a spell of 60 degree weather followed by 4or 5 inches of snow one day. Mother Nature is such a teaser. Almost the whole gang met at a goat farm in Lakeville to look at goats, naturally Jan bought one and Lindsey got one too, so begins another story line. We spent some time out at the farm getting the goat shed ready for occupancy, with some lights that Eli scored from an acquaintance of his, also working on getting some wiring done in his shop. The last day of the month I was back in a doctor's office getting ready for some heart imaging and a stress test. March was more time out at the farm doing some more wiring and fixing some of the wiring and working on the Panigale model in the evenings. We were back to Rochester for basketball over the weekend and work at the farm getting ready for the goats arrival. The weather was teasing again so I did get a bike or two out of the garage for some exercise. The 6th saw 70 degree start with a finish of rain, hail, a couple tornados and snow, for crying in the soup! It must have been the year for it but I replaced batteries in Jan's car and 4 motorcycles in March. We spent the next weekend in Buffalo watching Sam's 4th grade team take the state title, they were undefeated for the season. And Jan and I drove home in snow that got worse the closer we got to St. James. I had an echocardiogram later in the month to finish up the latest round of tests, and finally got the all clear results, PTL. Brother Phil and I made the run to Rush City to Dennis Kirk for parts and a stop at Cambridge for burgers again. We think we have been making the trip up there for maybe 30 years. April began with a dead battery on the GS, it turned out an accessory I mounted over the winter had a very low current flow that sucked the battery down over several days. I found a lead that is only hot when the engine is running and fixed that one. Eli, Lindsey, Leah, Jan and I drove up to Lakeville to pick up the girls two goats. While we were gone the little goat Lindsey had gotten from the neighbors died somehow, very, very sad. Rachel, Joe and Annie drove here from Burke to spend a couple days. Jan's goat got sick and needed to go to the vets sitting on her lap wrapped in a blanket. Several injections later she recovered. I drove my Mom to an eye doctor appointment in Mankato, she is getting injections in one eye to help with macular degeneration. I traded our R1200RT of on a new Triumph Bonneville at Belle Plain just before taking off on another bucket list trip. This time I am trying to complete a trip south that I have attempted twice before. Eventually I did make it to Louisiana, jump the Mississippi into Mississippi and head north through Memphis, Kentucky and Illinois before the bad weather caught up with me, but then if you scroll back through my blogs you can read about that trip in detail. May started with a long bus trip to the Cities with my granddaughter Leah. It was pretty fun with stops around the capitol and a Twins game, that they won with 7 home runs. I brought our new Bonneville home and got busy breaking it in. We got the trailer out and loaded up for a weekend at Jackson of all places with a group of Jan's ex job friends. I managed to repair my 25 year old Honda mower that fell apart while mowing. Thank God for You tube videos on repair procedures. Also, Jan and I are following grandkids various activities in the area. In the meantime Jan is spending quite some time with her young goats as opposed to me, her old goat. Around my birthday I headed out on another bucket list ride, heading for Arizona ultimately. Down through Nebraska, Kansas, Colorado, New Mexico and to Kayenta, Arizona, which is south of Monument Valley. For the most part the weather co operated this time with fair skies and moderate temperatures. The return trip was up through Colorado, Wyoming and South Dakota. So now I have ridden in every state west of the Mississippi and a few east of it too. June began with more doctor appointments, for Jan this time, one of her knees is giving her trouble. The main drawback to getting older, that body that you have been taking for granted is now looking for some payback and repair work. And now that grandkids are into soccer too. So more road trips in the area, and this includes some Patriot Guard missions too. Jan and I have doing some paneling in the basement to finish another area that has been hanging fire for an extended length of time. We have been spending more time out at the farm our family of children and grand children, and prior to the mosquito invasion we had some good times there. Jan's goat who was born with some identity issues had some surgery and is now officially Olivia. It seems as if the summer just keeps getting more busy all of the time, luckily the price of gas is staying down so it is not such a drag on our enthusiasm to run here and there. By the end of June I was getting our trailer out for our run to Lanesboro for the 4th of July campout. So I will take a break here and finish up with the last half of 2017 later on, as who knows what the rest of this year might bring? What with two finger typing and having to run upstairs and ask Jan how to spell some words,

it takes awhile to grind this out. It seems odd that the computer will flag misspelled words but not give you a list of possible correct spelling, must be windows 10.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Another Bucket List Post

  Well, folks I am at it again. With my latest bike trip I managed to check off the last state west of the Mississippi that I had not ridden in. This Spring I have managed to get to the last two states I needed  to get to, Louisiana and Arizona, so I can die happy, so to speak. The first night was in Salina, Kansas. The ride south and west of there that morning was so beautiful, clear skies, green foliage, and one town that impressed me with it's cleanliness and order. The town was Lindsborg, home of a small Lutheran college, very pleasant area. Later on the slog west across the high plains I passed through a small town and caught a historical marker calling out Burdett, Kansas as the discoverer of Pluto's home town, Clyde Tombaugh. At that point I followed a string of parked coal cars on an abandoned rail line next to the highway. This went on for 15 miles to the next town with breaks for road crossings etc.. I have seen parked rail cars like this all over the country, kind of an indicator of the rail business and the economy in general. Eastern Colorado was next, and this is not the part of Colorado that most people visualize when they think of Colorado, like the John Denver vision. Trinidad for the second night is right next to the real mountains and the next morning I went west and north out of there on Colorado highway 12. That was the reason I had headed to that part of the state in the first place. It turned out that it was a good choice, quiet roads and little traffic in the morning and the mountains were snow covered. The third photo from the top is of West Spanish Peak. Over into the San Luis Valley to Antonito, home of the Cumbres and Toltec scenic railway. Jan and I rode that one a couple years ago and spent two nights in Antonito, a narrow gauge rail ride well worth the price of admission. Anyhow, to Chama, New Mexico for lunch and Bloomfield for the night. I missed a turn in Shiprock the next morning that took me out of town quite a ways, but I did get a shot of Shiprock which is the bottom photo. To my surprise the weather stayed so nice and cool and quiet all of the way to Kayenta, Arizona, where I stopped for lunch at MacDonalds. Kayenta is just south of Monument Valley and this stop was filled with Europeans, mostly French I think. I can only imagine their horror at those disgusting American eating places. I don't know but that was the cleanest MacDonalds that I have been in in a long time. All native workers because you are on a Navaho reservation there. Out to the north towards Utah and Monument Valley next. I did mount my GoPro and record my ride through the area, the bottom photo is from there. I tried to upload some video to this blog but it won't take it, says it is too big. There are not too many parts of Utah that are not scenic and the ride up to Monticello fit the bill. Then back across south western Colorado to Delores, up passed Ophir, Telluride, to Ridgeway for the night. The second photo is from the back yard of the motel in Ridgeway taken the next morning. Jan and I have stayed there a couple of times, and Phil and Eli and I have spent time there too. It's always been a great place to hang your hat. Get home-itus was setting in the next day as I wound through some of the best roads around. Up to Delta, over McClure pass, Glenwood Canyon and north Towards Steamboat Springs. I stopped for gas and some lunch in Yampa, a big slice of pizza and a coke on a picnic table in the yard. A young lady spotted my Minnesota plate and asked me where I was from, said around 40 miles south west of Mankato, she had gone to MSU. I asked where she was from, and she was from Waconia! Small world, Jan and I had spent several years there when we were first married. I know that I have mentioned this before, but when you are on a bike people just want to talk to you, something that almost never happens in a car. Up until this point I had not seen a drop of rain, but near Steamboat it got really black and I saw some lightning. Turning east over Rabbit Ears pass I thought that I might escape my wet fate, but it looked nasty to the north so I stopped and struggled into my rain gear. Just north of Walden I did run into some rain, but all the way to Laramie the rain had already passed by. After riding my favorite Wyoming 34 over to Wheatland I called it a night. The last day was a long- 700 mile run- home with lunch at Rapid City and the long haul down I-90. I got talking to a couple of brothers from out west and he saw the USAF hat I was wearing and we did the usual, where, when, which bases, which aircraft etc.. When I told him Electronic warfare and B-52Ds he was really surprised, as that was his career field too. We compared AFSCs, and both agreed that neither one of us had ever run across another ECM troop before, and I have been out over 50 years. We stood around in the lot at Murdo and talked B-52s ecm gear etc., etc. until his brother called a halt. If you have ever been around a couple of B-52 freaks before you would know this could go on for hours, kind of like my brother and I with muscle cars. These two brothers had been on the road all over the USA for most of the month of May. I was home by 8:30 or so ready to call it a long day. I turned the GS over to 20,000 miles out in South Dakota somewhere, so I am having a good riding year so far. A lot of the time I feel like I am running out of time, like we all are, and riding is one of the skill sets that needs be sharp if you want to live to ripe old age. So, as usual, leave a note if you will and we'll meet in the future somewhere.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

The ongoing Bucket LIst quest

   A few weeks ago I saw a window in the weather to the south and took a chance that I could beat the odds and dodge the bad stuff again. I loaded up and headed south again for destinations I have tried to reach before, like Arkansas and Louisiana. It was a nice ride through Iowa with clear skies and a tail wind to Indianola for the night. Day two was spent crossing Missouri from north to south on some off the interstate highways. A lot of small towns in that state are in pretty bad shape, with lots of homes in such bad shape it was hard to tell if they were occupied or not, not the town I would like to call home I guess. The ride was nice though through pretty country down to Springfield and around Branson to Harrison, Arkansas. For some reason once you get into southern Missouri and Arkansas things look more prosperous and better cared for. I can see why retirees sometimes head down to Arkansas. It was in the 80s and sunny, beautiful countryside and roads especially, at least the couple of days I was there. Shortly after I made the round trip things got real ugly in that area, with heavy rains with washed out roads, and interstates under water. It seems like I heard that Branson was talking about evacuating, and I had just been there. I ran a road up through the Ozarks with my GoPro recording about an hours worth of riding.  Anyhow, a really nice ride down to the Little Rock area, and then the grind down to the Louisiana state line. I had driven down that same road in 1963, 54 years ago on my way home from tech school in Biloxi, with several guys headed home too. From there I headed over into Mississippi and up to Clarksdale for the night. That area really is the Mississippi delta country and it is flat with a lot of agriculture. The next morning was up to Memphis. I have been trying to download one of my GoPro segments, but it  is evidently to large, so if anyone needs to see it you need to be in front of the laptop. Man, do I hate Windows 10!! So anyhow Memphis was kind of a traffic snarl especially when you are trying to read a map in 3 or 4 lanes of traffic at 60 per. Amazingly enough I got through the whole city without getting lost once! I did see a sign for Graceland but ignored it. I had been watching the weather every day and could see that the crap was on the way from the west, so I kept hitting the road as much as I could. Western Tennessee was a lot like parts of Arkansas, flat and then wooded. I managed to clip the end of Kentucky to add another state to my list and rolled over the Ohio river into Cairo, Illinois. Wow, is the city in bad, bad shape, the miles long main street did not have more than a few open businesses, so I was glad to make my way out of that area and head north into Illinois. About this time I started to get a little moisture coming down, and called it a day in Marion, lucky for me it absolutely poured that night while I holed up in the motel. I left there the next morning with every stitch of clothing that I had along on me. The crap from the west was arriving to be sure. From then on up to Springfield, over to Hannibal, Missouri and up to Iowa City,  fighting the cold and a stiff head wind. I spent that night in Iowa City and cruised home the next day in 4 or 5 hours. Oh ya it was like 35 above most of the last day. So I added 3 more states to my list, and with Louisiana I only have more to visit to have every state west of the Mississippi, which I plan on trying to get to in the next week or two. That would be Arizona. Since I returned, Jan and I had our trailer out last weekend, it was beautiful, this weekend not so much. It is 45 degrees here and has rained all day. My lawn is going wild and it's too wet to mow, gonna need a sickle mower soon. Oh ya, I traded our R1200 RT BMW in on a new t120Triumph Bonneville on the 4th. So no pictures this time.

Monday, April 3, 2017

Spring Follow Up

 I finally finished that model of a Ducati 1199 Panigalle and here are a few photos of the finished product. I cannot imagine tackling something this detailed again. Parts that are so small a tweezers was too large to grip them properly. I have to admit it took a month to get it done, what with painting parts one day and attaching them to the growing bike the next. Did I mention that Jan and I made a trip to Rapid City to a large model shop that I have been visiting for more than 50 years, knowing that they would have the correct colors that are called for in the directions. Well, that was the excuse for a cruise to the Hills again. I actually picked up another color paint at a shop in Fairfax, Virginia when we were out there in February. So I have quite a collection of Tamiya paints. The color on the body panels is Italian red with a couple coats of clear coat on top to make it nice and shiny and cover the decals, which were affixed with a lot of oaths.

Here is the photo of the first resident of Eli and Lindsey's goat farm. Jan and Lindsey are going up to Lakeville this coming weekend to pick up a couple more so this one won't be lonely. Charlotte is this one's name and she was pretty little when they got her. Hopefully they will earn their keep by keeping the grass and weeds trimmed. We shall see.
Lastly, I had several tests done in the last couple weeks to make sure that the old ticker isn't about to fall out on the street. A nuclear stress test- not fun- was first on the agenda followed by an echo cardiogram here in St. James. I have had both of these done before so I was not too surprised at the procedures. A few days later we met with the doctor and I was afraid that open heart surgery was in my future, but PTL everything was fine. He suggested that maybe the reason I don't have the energy I used to have is because I ain't as young as I used to be, imagine that. So I am back planning bike trips for the coming year and chasing after grandkids activities. I will leave you with my usual request, leave a message if you please.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Another State Tournament

  Jan and I spent a weekend in Buffalo, Minnesota attending our Grandson Sam's fourth grade basketball teams domination of their division. They ended the season undefeated and took the championship with determination and hard intelligent play. Their team shows the benefit of good players, good coaching, and a close group of kids who want to work hard at their craft. To have seen them last year and this, the improvement and co-ordination of the players was absolutely amazing. My brother Phil and his wife Laura had not seen them this year before last Saturday and were wowed by the level of play. One thing that I can't quite get over, is watching them play to the level that they do, running plays, passing the ball and fast breaks, to, when they are off the court being a bunch of not so regular 10 and 11 year olds. Jan and I were sitting with Gen and some parents and fans between games, and what were the members up to? Lying on the floor working math problems! Anyhow we spent Saturday night at Phil and Laura's house, which is a ten minute drive from the games' site at the Buffalo Senior High School. I think that the school had 8 basketball courts, and it looks as if more are under construction. Sam plays for the Lourdes team out of Rochester and probably will continue right on up through High school. I don't know if it is karma or what but it was Lourdes that beat Gen's St, James team for the State Championship in 1994 and now her sons will probably play for them. Our other Theobald grandson, Gus and I were watching one of the games and I pointed out Sam and his teammates on the floor and said "that's you next year", he wasn't so sure, but we'll see. One thing that helps is that their main coach, Scuba and Tom Week also coach, is the Lourdes high school coach too, so they could play together right through high school.

I have thrown in a few photos from the games. I shot a lot of frames over the 2 days, but for some reason the sport setting on my camera evidently is not working, as it should have stopped action but did not, so most of the half way good ones that I got were when nobody was moving. Being around this group of young men the last couple of years has somewhat restored my faith in the future. In the top photo, Scouba is in the upper right, and Sam, his son, is right below him. After the games Jan and I headed home in a snow storm that steadily got worse the closer we got to home. The last 35 miles were white knuckles at maybe 30 miles per hour. On Monday I had to get the trusty snow blower out to move 6-8 inches of snow out of the way.
   On another note. Rachel e-mailed wondering if I had any photos of Joe playing basketball from when we were out there in Burke. I do, but the photo to e-mail procedure has changed again so I finally gave up trying to attach photos to an e-mail. Let's see if I can get lucky now? I actually got a short video to down load. Here are a couple of photos of grandson number one, Josiah DeFor, he's number 22. In the photos above, Sam Theobald is 23. So that about does it, although I have been working on a model of a Ducati Panigali 1199. This is the most intricate plastic model I have ever tried to assemble bar none. I figure, rather that coughing up huge dough for the real thing I would build the model and park it on the baby grand in the living room. Our 94 900 SSCR spent the first winter in our bedroom in front of the patio door. It was nice to look at the first thing in the morning, you know, bright red in the morning sun. So that about does it for now. Lemme know if you read this OK?

Needless to say it ain't done yet. 

Friday, February 17, 2017

To Burke and Back

   Jan and I just returned from our Navy family in Burke, Virginia. Hans was going back to the Barking Sands test range in Hawaii for a week, and if we could run out there, to Burke, Rachel could go along for a nice vacation. Hans is working on a project for the Navy, so when he was off they could spend some time together. We checked the weather forecasts and checked airline schedules and decided to drive out. With gas prices as low as they are now the fuel costs were not that bad. I did see $1.99 in Ohio, I think. It is a couple of days out and back of pretty hard driving. The truck traffic just seems to get worse all of the time, any more and they will almost be bumper to bumper on some of the interstates. We spent around 10 days at their place. Got to spend some time with the kiddos, watch Josiah play basketball a couple of times, and run to Target, and the grocery store more than once. Hans got home early Sunday morning and Rachel arrived later in the afternoon. They were not on the same flights, obviously, and in a kind of macabre sense, if one of the planes had been lost we wouldn't have lost both of them. I hate to think like that but sometimes thoughts run away with you. Anyhow, Jan and I spent our Anniversary driving down the interstate highway system on Tuesday wishing each other Happy Valentines Day too. Wow, it can't be 46 years already can it? I want the world to slow down a little, for us anyway. It seems as if things are accelerating with the grand kids, and Summer coming on, and getting bikes out for a run. I have a hunch that this coming year will not see me putting another 19,000 miles on like I did last year, but then who knows? Just for St. Jan, the last 46 years have been so good that I am going to wish for another 46. Know that I love you more now than that day in February 1971, OK? And last but not least it was Annika's Birthday on the 15th. She just turned 11. We got to see her at the hospital in Japan just hours after her arrival. So that is about it for now.
                                         Love Pete