2017 BEGINS

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Seems it is going to snow all January and making cycling difficult for me so as I can’t do much else time to concentrate on skiing and my other winter discipline of Pool.

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Across the road at the Riverfront is our Saturday venue and we are two weeks away from the Championship day on 21st Jan. Yesterday I just had the feeling that I would do well as for the last couple of weeks with the “goodwill to all men” I seemed to have lost my killer edge. Not so anymore its back!

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8 missiles and the gun….. I’m ready!

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I kick off against Marty and win reasonably well. Next game we both are on the black and neither of us can sink the thing on a very rough and non level table. After three shots a piece my opposition sinks the cue ball giving me the win so I’m 2 up on a day with 21 players. what does that mean, you ask ? Well the game sheet for 16 players means to must win 3 times in a row to get into the money and with numbers up to 32 players you need 4 in a row. Shortly after my win I’m told my next opponent, NY Bob, has withdrawn and gone home with the flu.

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My next game is against last week’s winner Todd. Good game all the way through and very evenly matched. I finish off with a very long shot on the black and it goes absolutely straight into the pocket without touching anything! Very satisfying and I feel I’m right back on my game.  With 4 wins I’m now in the money again.

Now time for the undefeated players to play off for a place in the final or a spot in the 3rd or better berth. I play Gary in this round and I’m back on the table with 2 balls left against his 5. The Yellow along the top rail “softly” leaves me with a huge cut on the Orange which I spend a few moments calculating angles. A perfect hit and it trundles all the way down the table and drops in the nominated pocket. A simple cut on the black to the middle bag and the game is mine.

Gary plays Marty for the other slot in the final and wins through and now racks for me. Game goes well and coming to the black I’m 6 balls up as he pots my last one and also sinks the cue ball. However, the Black is in the baulk area so I must come up and down off the rail. It doesn’t get the correct return off the cushion and misses the black but finds its way into the pocket for my first loss! SH  1T!

The second game has the black trapped in a corner between two of Gary’s and while I can sink mine without too much trouble I don’t like the black situation. I’m hoping that Gary will sink his and then be forced to take on his last balls by the black. It doesn’t happen and I’m left with an awful situation. I can squeeze the cue ball through but I must not hit his. A double kiss will also cost me the game as will an in off one of his. A perfect shot again just touching the black and forcing him to shoot at the “blockers” as there is no other option. This shot clears the problem and gives me a nice shot on the black and the win of $52.50 …….. with only one more week of qualifying I have now 2 Wins, 2 Seconds and 3 Thirds!

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Game!

Today its Sunday, still snowing but its also the Championship over in Mancos where I qualified once with a Second . Brenda is the duty driver and not overly pleased but accepts the position as she didn’t qualify.

A wet dreary day and pool seems like the No1 choice. My first game is against Michael and I’m first to the black but there is too much chance of scratching so I don’t try too hard. Sadly he cleans up his remaining balls and sinks the black. First loss!

First game from the loser’s bench against Teresa giving me the win and 4 balls up at the end. There is also a leak from the snow on the roof and there is a catcher’s bucket at the end of the table! Kicking the bucket takes on a whole new meaning.

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Buck .. it!

A bit of a surprise as I find I’m up against John McEwan who I would rate as the best player around. I saw him playing yesterday and it was like a “pool demo” …….. perfect shots every time and superb cue ball control. On reflection I didn’t play him yesterday so two people must have beaten him! Our game is awful!!! anybody watching this would have thought neither of us had played before! however I click in and run out the winner.

Bill Ragland is next and he has been on a roll of late with very crisp and accurate shooting. Two visits to the table and I’m down to my last two with Bill yet to get one. He gets two and lets me back on the table and I have a perfect run to clean up.

A short break as Marty takes on Michael, who I lost to in round 1. Looked like Marty had the game with an amazing shot but failed to hit a ball he nominated..

Now to play Michael again and I must rack as he is undefeated. Game goes well for me with some superb shots and I’m an easy winner. Game 2 and I’m playing well with more great shots bringing me onto the black for a very tight cut all the way to the top pocket.

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Oh, so nearly for the game

One more revolution and it would have dropped but sadly for me Michael cleans up his last balls and the black is a gift. From a 1st round loss I’m delighted to have made it into the “money” let alone come so close to the overall win. Never mind $60.00 for second is a pleasant result especially after yesterday’s win.

2017 results; 1 first  and 1 second …… total $112.50 !!

 

TONY DOWN

 

 

 

 

BOXING DAY AND ON

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Well the beef was perhaps one of the best pieces of meat I’ve eaten in a long, long time! Now for those that don’t follow old traditions its straight back to it and Christmas is done for another year …… but not in this household!

There are 12 days of Christmas and we are only at Day 2. Today, (Boxing Day) starts with more lumberjacking and firewood. Put away the last of the ski boots and make ready to return Phil to Durango. Steamworks for lunch, very busy, and around the town window shopping for the must have item. All too soon we are at the airport and time to say goodbyes at the end of another visit.

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Day 3, and now rectification after the 2nd storm. Frosty rebuilt, reindeers stood up and polar bear back on his stump. The motor has failed on the big buck and the front lights have gone out on the drinking doe. Scuffy gets a brushing and Santakins and Goofy are relocated.

Up the Maple tree where several strings of meteor lights have gone out it seems the water has run into the USB ports of the plugs! One to remember for next time and some waterproofing required. 3 of the 4 sets repaired.

Time for a look at Four Seasons 75% off sale. 4 more sleighs for me and Brenda finds 5 snowmen and a very long up market garland to go over the kitchen cabinets. Nice items!

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At 75% off these are only $1.50 each! Very nice

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Snowmen, red hats for my garland $3.00 each

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Black hat ones for the tree

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Special tree ornament for Brenda ….. a “Plan B” boat!!! …… and it looks just like it……. I even put the name on the back.

Day 4, and time for yet another visit to Durango to see my Doctor for the lung check up. The new CT lung scan is quick and easy and all appears well as he is quite impressed especially with the 2031 miles at 7000′. The meeting degenerates into golfing, skiing and mountain biking! ……. so I guess I’m OK ?  Nice lunch at a new venue and almost valet parking. Not much on the after Christmas goodies search but a pleasant day out.

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Diners

Day 5, bright and sunny but cold. Might be a good day to try on my cycling thermals Christmas present. Tried on, very warm, top a little tight, pants just right. In fact, the reverse of the other set where the pants are a bit loose. Temps have shot up today, and no wind. It even says 53F !!!! I could ride without the thermals. Brenda will try and change the top.

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Day 6, still bright and cold but more snow forecast for the weekend. Several things I could do today but currently not fired up in any direction. Film day !

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Day 7, New Year’s Eve, light snow this morning and so far just a dusting. Not looking like a cycling day so 2016 wraps up with 2031 on the odometer. How many in 2017? …. think I’ll try for 3000 and see how many I can get before my next Doctor’s visit. Also want to get back to trials riding in 2017. The snow (wet) has not stopped all morning and although it doesn’t look like a big fall you can never tell up here. It carries on snowing all afternoon but as the temps go up a little no more settles.

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Day 8, New Year’s Day, well didn’t see any fireworks, didn’t stay up, but I’m still here having an early morning coffee. time for those 2017 resolutions!

More Trials Riding, More Cycling, More Skiing, More Pool. Try and be nicer to the Chamber of Commerce. More summer Boating and Fishing. Stay Healthy …… be thoughtful to others.

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A lot more of this please

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Santa didn’t fill this stocking, but I have my eye on a few!

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Plenty of this for 2017

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A load of this in the Crystal Ball

Day 9, Monday 2nd Jan, and rapidly approaching 12th Night so time to think putting it all away for another year. Brenda needs 3 more boxes for upstairs and I need 3 more for outside for all the extras out there. Better get myself to Walmart and 6 up!

Walmart it is then, and to my surprise they are on a 75% off deal on selected Christmas stuff. A few more bells go in the cart after first humping 6 of the big red festive boxes. This gets followed by 6 of the tree topper lights now all down to $2.50 a pop! Two sets of the green/red baubles for my 2016 garlands at around $1.00 and a 300 set of lights for Brenda’s new kitchen garland for another $2.00.

Day 10, and snow on the rail with more to come. Seems the Subaru battery has gone down so I guess I’ll be back to Walmart this morning for a replacement. Dolores school buses out and about as they are starting 1 day ahead of us……. better enjoy my last day off! Well at least its “early release” tomorrow so I should get home in daylight.

With the weather looking pretty crappy for January I’d better start thinking thin again as I’ve put on a few pounds during this winter break. Hopefully it should come off once I can get out there and push a few more miles on those pedals, but before that its battery time. They put the 2 year old one on test and I set off around the store which is dangerous and a few more Christmas trinkets are in the cart. Seems this battery test takes 90 minutes!!!  Why don’t they tell you?   End result the battery failed the test so we get another FREE which is just as well as it costs $93.00…….. All fitted and she is happy.

A bit of a tidy up and make ready afternoon as tomorrow will be our last full night of lights as yet another major storm bears down on us.

Day 11, back to school so back to the 0430 wake up call. Roads are clear but the forecast for us is about 1 foot over the next 2 days and over 3 feet up the road at Rico which is close to 9000′. Not much can be done today as its “Early Release” and I’m back in just after midday. Last full night of lights so enjoy!

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Day 12, a real crap morning with none of the forecast snow and its raining! Home again and try and remove some of the outside things but its wet and very unpleasant so concentrate on inside. Brenda is on upstairs and I complete downstairs with some of the outside stuff brought in to dry.

The crew of Scuffy are rescued, Santa is last to leave the ship and wreaths and lanterns brought in to dry before being boxed up again. The rain continues all day until my homeward run when it changes over to snow and then the storm really hits!

We have had NUMEROUS well wishers praising our 2016 display and generally the town’s people are pretty angry over the results and will be making their voice heard. Until then……….. Happy New Year.

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TONY DOWN

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