Thursday, February 3, 2011

How cold?

I read yesterday that the all-time record low temperature of -61 was  in Colorado was in Maybell in 1985.  I don't remember that but maybe my brain was frozen.  Maybell is about halfway between here and there.  On highway 40 between Steamboat Springs and Craig just past Hayden.  Blink and you will miss it.  

Two times that I thought should have been records came to mind.   

Once was in 1978 when my brother in law and I were on a road trip and ended up in a motel in Alamosa.  I never did find out how cold it was but the smart guests knew enough not to shut off their engines overnight knowing that the vehicles would not start in the morning.  

When I was in Thule, Greenland they did the same thing.  They would get new equipment, start it up and never shut it off.  Let it run.  Kept it warm because it would never be warm again.  

In Alamosa a fellow with a mechanic's truck with a portable welder drove around in the morning jump starting every car in the lot including mine, free of charge.  The code of the west.  Never leave a fellow traveler with a dead battery.  

The other one was when my youngest son was about ten in 1990.  He had made it into the finals of the Elks Free Throw contest and the event was being held in Craig.  We stayed at the Holiday Inn and I took the cot next to the wall and let the young ruffians have the two big beds.  I went to sleep and woke up in the morning with my pillow and the sheets frozen to the inside wall.  Yes, the inside wall.  

One winter my family was staying at the Holiday Inn in Fort Dodge, Iowa and there was ice on the inside of the window in the room.  Yes, the inside of the window.  

The same thing in the Ramada Inn in Gillette, Wyoming in 1982 where the inside window in the lounge where the band was playing was coated with ice.

There has to be a country and western song in all of this.

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