Rudy's Rants

Rudy Ramsey’s Rants and Ravings

Our Pacific Northwest Vacation

Alice and I just returned from a 21-day driving tour of the Pacific Northwest, including Utah, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Vancouver Island (British Columbia), Banff National Park (Alberta), Montana, and Wyoming. This is our first North American vacation in a long time, and our first long driving vacation ever. We had a great time, had very enjoyable visits with four relatives and their families, and saw some truly beautiful parks.

This vacation was a bit more manic than we usually attempt, as we had a lot of specific things we wanted to do. Aside from the vacation spots, summarized in photos below, we had nice visits with

  • Rudy’s sister, Shawna Ramsey, and Patrick, in Reno, Nevada
  • Alice’s sister, Jeanne Haster, and Jim, Katie, and Ben, in Portland, Oregon
  • Alice’s nephew, Robert Farrell, and Ginger, in Seattle, Washington
  • Alice’s cousin, Vicki Holbrook, and Chuck, in Whitefish, Montana

Here’s a very brief set of photo highlights, intended for family and friends. They may or may not be interested, but I can’t imagine that anyone else will be. (smile)

Colorado River, Fisher Towers, and Mount Waas, near Moab, Utah (6/10/2007)
Double Arch, Arches National Park, Utah (6/11/2007)
Rudy with his sister, Shawna, at Lake Tahoe, near Reno, Nevada (6/13/2007)
Crater Lake National Park, Oregon (6/15/2007)

Pictures don’t do it justice!

Chinese Garden, Portland, Oregon (6/17/2007)
Gatsby Hotel, Victoria, British Columbia (6/19/2007)

Our lodging.

High Tea at the Empress Hotel, Victoria, British Columbia (6/20/2007)

With Denver Post Travel section (we’re hoping to get into print)

Alice at Butchart Garden, near Victoria, British Columbia (6/21/2007)
Iron Mine Bay, Pikes Road Trails, East Sooke, British Columbia (6/22/2007)
Lake Agnes from the Teahouse, Banff National Park, Alberta (6/25/2007)

After a 2.2-mile uphill trail. We nearly froze at the top. You can see the wind in the photo!

Above Upper Falls, Johnston Canyon, Banff National Park, Alberta (6/26/2007)
Grand Prismatic Spring, Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming (6/29/2007)

I also did some coffee-related things, attending the Pacific Northwest Home Roaster’s Gathering and experiencing several very special coffee shops in Portland, Seattle, Vancouver, and even Whitefish, Montana. I hereby express my gratitude to Alice for her tolerance. :-)

Especially enjoyable were several hikes we did, and I shot video of my favorite, Johnston Canyon in Banff National Park. I plan to prepare a short video on this hike. Banff is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen.

Posted 10 years, 5 months ago at 10:14 pm.

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Hatchling Goes Dancing

In June 2007, my company (Z-Axis Corporation) had a podcast contest for its employees. We’ve been using podcasting in our corporate marketing and internal training activities for awhile, and this exercise was intended to encourage folks at Z-Axis to learn more about the technology. I decided to take the opportunity to do a brief video about our race car (“Hatchling”) and the Solo2 autocross racing that I do with our son, Devin.

Devin was actually the reason I got back into autocross racing after a gap of nearly 40 years. I raced a Formcar Formula Vee in Sports Car Club of America (SCCA) competition in the 1960s, and did a lot of autocross racing and rallying as well (both Alice and I won Midwest Division SCCA championships in the 60s, Alice in the women’s class and me overall). Well, around 2005, Devin’s interest in cars (especially Japanese sports cars), racing, and tuning was getting him involved with a street-racing crowd. Not a good thing, in my opinon (and in Devin’s retrospective opinion, as well). I decided that SCCA was a much more positive outlet for this energy, and took him to a local SCCA autocross. He was instantly completely at home, and we decided to build a race car together (a 1989 Honda Civic Si Hatchback). We chose this car because it tends to be the fastest car in the most competitive affordable class (Street Touring – Stock). We’ve been having a great time. This video shows what we’re doing.

I should mention that there’s a bit of suggestive language in this video, as I spiced it up slightly for the contest. It didn’t win, but I think folks enjoyed it. I hope you will, too. :-)

 
icon for podpress  Hatchling Goes Dancing [3:00m]: Play Now | Play in Popup | Download (217)

Posted 10 years, 5 months ago at 1:57 pm.

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An Apology, if One Is Needed

Several times over the last few years, I’ve thought of starting a personal blog. Up to now, I’ve always decided against it, feeling that I didn’t really have anything to say, though that doesn’t seem to have stopped anyone else. ;-)

It turns out, though, that I really do have things to say. I just don’t have a continuing stream of riveting commentary on the events of the day. This is partly because I’m a jack of all trades, with such a variety of interests that few if any people would want to read about them all. For example, I’d like to post things about specialty coffee and about autocross racing. And I would certainly like to do posts in Scottish Gaelic. Just this short list of personal interests is likely shared by approximately zero other folks. And I’m interested in genealogy, Celtic singling, martial arts, single-malt scotch, and progressive U.S. politics. Not to mention the possible use of a personal blog to post information that might be of interest specifically to my extended family and close friends.

So what I’ve decided to do is to create a blog which will have occasional postings in my various interest areas, and will provide categories and category-based RSS (and podcast) feeds for anyone foolish enough to want to come back for more.

I absolutely don’t promise a steady stream of material — my postings in any given category will likely be relatively infrequent. But I’ll try not to post anything unless I think I have something worth saying, and I’ll try to apply the category coding so you won’t even see postings unless they’re on some topic in which you’ve indicated an interest.

Thanks for visiting, feel free to comment, and maybe I’ll see you here again. :-)

Rudy

Posted 10 years, 5 months ago at 5:26 pm.

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