It was a full spectrum of experiences for both of us during 2010. This being an in-between year in our every-other-year for hard-copy cards, we are sharing some family photos and activities with you on our website. Despite the TSA, we still traveled afar, but loved driving and hiking in Colorado the best.
In January, we vacationed (without computers or phones) in St. Lucia, sailing along the coastline of the famous Pitons, experienced a botanical garden and nearby volcano, along with hiking and snorkeling. We even dined at Bono's favorite bistro when he comes through on his yacht. Soon afterwards, while Y attended to important issues on the home front, Clark flew to Mexico City for a meeting in the Foreign Ministry about preparing for an asteroid impact emergency. Clark took brief solo trips to Boston and Washington D.C., while a member of a NASA Task Force on planetary defense, and traveled again to D.C. in December to serve on a National Science Foundation panel, which took vastly more effort than promised (the NSF paid about $800 for two weeks of work).
We dashed over to our Breckenridge timeshare to ski, and then again a few months later because it was literally next door to the venue for the international Meteoroids 2010 meeting (the last Meteoroids meeting was three years ago in Barcelona).
In June we traveled to Cambridge, Massachusetts, and then on to Pisa, Italy, for a meeting commemorating Clark's colleague, Paolo Farinella, who passed away ten years earlier. We climbed the Leaning Tower, even though slippery and scary for Y at the top, and were treated to the annual festival of lights on our last night. There was another trip to Italy in the autumn for the filming of a documentary about a possible impact crater in the Appennines. Our mid-summer trip visited both coasts, first to attend the Lunar Science Forum in the Bay Area and then the Meteoritical Society meeting in New York City. Y met her good friend Rena, who flew in from Memphis, and also two friends from the time when Y lived in Manhattan.
We traveled again in the autumn, first a car-trip to Flagstaff and back through southwestern Colorado, then flew to Tucson and on to Pasadena. We saw some good ole "golden" friends in Tucson during the celebration of the Lunar and Planetary Lab's 50th anniversary (Clark worked there for three summers after graduating from high school). Our dear friend Barbara Tegethoff (who, with her husband, attended our wedding in Sedona) went to a star of her choosing and Y will miss their frequent talks.
Rancho Europa now has a new swing for two up on a high ledge behind our house, a new paver stone driveway, and Y's immense xeriscape project involving tons of stones and a new mascot named Bombolini. Rocko, our manx, even has a new tower where he can sit closer to the ceiling and watch both of us and our movie screen, as well. Both Y and Clark battled computer problems, but both also got new computers. We have a Blu-Ray player, which connects to Pandora radio on the internet, and Y's new iPad will enable her to travel much lighter. Non-life-threatening medical/dental issues made 2010 a frequently painful year for both of us.
A couple of wildfires a few miles to the north of us put the Boulder foothills into the national news, but we weren't affected, except for some road closures and smoke in Clark's office building. In the spring Clark and Y wrote a lengthy report (available on ranchoeuropa.com) concerning the proposed enlargement of nearby Gross Reservoir, which threatens to take yet more water from the thirsty Colorado River. Ginette's husband, Mitch Tobin, gave a book-signing, which we attended, at the Boulder Bookstore, with the publication of his new book on endangered species in the American southwest. One bright spot in this autumn's politics is that Clark's brother, Ralph, won a seat in the Maine state legislature.
Clark continued to juggle too many scientific projects on multiple topics. We are looking forward to the MESSENGER spacecraft finally going into orbit around Mercury this coming spring. We are saddened that some friends, including several of Clark's esteemed colleagues, passed away during the last few months, including Ralph Baldwin at age 98 (he demonstrated that lunar craters were formed by impact in a book published in the 1940s). Ben Slinger, of our mountain community, also departed and will be missed for his legendary generosity and over-the-top sense of humor. Y has continued to work on local issues, often through her Peak-to-Peak Rotary Club. We have had some good times with friends, both close to home and in far-flung places around the country and the world. Rocko continues his spoiled existence at Rancho Europa, joined by his best friends Carol ("Rockette") or Jennifer when we are on travel. As we face the last week of the year, it has been an unusually mild and virtually snow-free autumn and early winter -- though snow has been piling up on the other side of the Divide. We spent Christmas Eve and Christmas with special friends at the recently upgraded Devil's Thumb Ranch Resort, just 19 miles from Rancho Europa but on the snowy side of the Divide, where we shoeshoed and witnessed cross-country skijoring.
Good wishes to all our friends and family (including Clark's mother who will be 98 in a few months) and we hope for a trend toward rationality and peace in the coming year.
From our hearts to yours,
Clark, Y & Rocko Chapman
Sailing toward the Pitons in St. Lucia, January 2010.
Construction of our new paver stone driveway (March).
Rocko watching his cat-sitter video (March).
Y standing by our new swing (April).
Leaning tower, Piazza Miracoli, Pisa, Italy (June).
Luminaria along the Arno River, Festival of Lights, Pisa, Italy (June).
Y meets her friend Rena in front of the Apple Store in mid-town Manhattan (July), a premonition of Y's new Mac computer and iPad later in the year.
With our friends Tom and Kathy, about to embark on a hike near Crested Butte, Colorado (August).
Views in Rocky Mountain National Park on our September hike.
Fourmile Canyon fire as seen from above Peaceful Valley on the Peak-to-Peak Highway (September).
Sirente crater in the Appenines of Italy, a possible impact crater visited by Clark in September during a TV6 filming.
Eddie Running Wolf carving tree trunk sculpture in Niwot, CO (September).
Y at Painted Desert overlook (September).
Lake San Cristobal in southwestern Colorado (September).
Desert tortoise at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum near Tucson (October).
Clark crossing a footbridge, Devil's Thumb Trail, Indian Peaks Wilderness, Colorado (October).
Clark riding a giraffe in Nederland's new carousel (November).
View from our room at Devil's Thumb Ranch Resort toward Devil's Thumb on the Continental Divide (Dec. 24th).