Sheridan Wyoming to Brush Creek Ranch. Monday, September 7, 2015

Steve wondered why I didn’t talk about last night’s dinner. Here is a short recap:

It took us quite a while to find the house as it was in the middle of nowhere. Well to begin with , Sheridan Wyoming is in the middle of nowhere to start with! Directions were good, we only had to turn around once as we overshot the turn for the driveway. It was all on one level and a stream ran right through the back yard. Poor Steve didn’t go fishing, you can be sure that he would have loved to try to wet his fly line!

The couple we had dinner with were so nice to invite us over. They had just moved into their new house, and hadn’t even finished unpacking! We had a delicious steak dinner. The couple also have a ranch that we didn’t visit, but I would have loved to have visited it as on the farm they have a giraffe! I think they must have bought it from a traveling zoo that went out of business.

It was time for breakfast, but first we filled the car up with gas. Making sure that your car has a gas tank that is never less than 1/2 full is always a good idea.

After getting my picture taken in front of the buffalo at the gas station it was time to look for breakfast.

Due to the Labor Day holiday, most places were closed. The famous Mint Bar was closed as it serves booze, not breakfast. Although I have heard that many people do enjoy booze at breakfast. In fact at a recent doctor visit I was asked if I recently had alcohol at breakfast. I told her no of course, but also asked how many people did admit to that!

Anyway we did find a place for breakfast across the street.

We even spotted a real cowboy who war wearing spurs on his boots! That would be the guy with grey hair, not his little wrangler!

Steve had the bison and elk sausage egg platter.

I had the strawberry and banana french toast with whipped cream. Where else can you get that?

After breakfast our final stop was to wave good bye to the The DaVinci horse. As I told you yesterday our good friend GG was in charge of the project design. Kim L was the local businessman who spearheaded the project. There were many statutes all around town. Kim and a group of other civic leaders thought it would be a good way to bring tourists to the area and to also encourage city pride.

Then it was time to head south to Casper Wyoming.

A drive through Starbucks! Ordering was via the drive through or walk up window! This would be the last sign of civilization for while!

We headed up and over Casper Mountain. There are no pictures of this as I was scared to death. There were few guard rails, and I was holding onto my seat while Steve kept us on the road. The elevation topped at 8000 feet. Sheridan Wyoming’s elevation is 3800 feet, and then Casper Wyoming’s elevation was 5000 feet so we had quite the steady climb!

Last night at dinner we were told to take the Shirley Basin route to Saratoga Wyoming where Brush Creek Ranch is located. We were told that although the route is quite deserted it was a very interesting way to Saratoga. Once over the mountain we headed downhill toward Shirley Basin.

Years ago Uranium was mined in the town of Shirley Basin. It is now a ghost town as the uranium mine closed shortly after the Three Mile Island accident and the price of uranium plummeted.

Once over the crest the road narrowed to a dirt road that we drove on for 25 miles. This road looks pretty rough!

Is heading down a good sign? Let’s hope so!

Pavement! That means civilization is not far away!

I was so happy to see cars heading in the opposite direction again!

We emerged onto the High Plains where we remained at an elevation of 6500-7000 feet. There were views for miles with mountains in the distance.

I don’t know how the pioneers lived back in the day. The conditions were brutal.

We didn’t see many cattle. Did you know that it takes 10-15 acres of range land to feed one head of cattle. No wonder the ranches are so big! The weather is a sunny 75 degrees.

We finally made it to Brush Creek Ranch. We decided to try the hotel style units in the main lodge. I was hoping that they would upgrade us and put us in a cabin, but no dice.

While we were discussing our activities for the coming week at the Activities Barn I started to feel a touch of the swoons. It was a stylish swoon, as although I took off my hat, I kept my sunglasses on!

We headed back up to the room and I laid down with my feet up to rest. Elevation here is 7600 feet. Here we were hoping that by driving out west I would acclimate better to the higher elevations. Guess that didn’t work out so well, now did it!

We had made prior arrangements to have massages at the spa. As I don’t like to be in the same room as Steve when he is having a massage I requested two rooms. I was disappointed when we were assigned the same room. Oh well. To make matters worse, my massage therapist was wearing cowboy boots, and was clomping all over the floor during the massage. I had to ask her to take the boots off. So far, not a good start to our stay!

Soon it was time to head downstairs for dinner. I hoped things would improve!

Soup.

Caesar salad.

This was our entree.

We had a lovely wine with dinner.

Chocolate desserts always make me feel better, and this one did the job. For awhile at least!

Our room had a view of the courtyard and in the courtyard is the Saloon. Unfortunately it was Karaoke night at the Saloon that first evening. It was very loud. I got really pissed as there were other rooms available in the main Lodge that were facing the mountains. Why did they put us in such a room that we would be hearing all the booze hounds in the bar? While Steve thought it not so bad, and promptly went to sleep with a pillow over his head I continued to stew. So I wrote an e-mail to the Vice President who is in charge of managing the ranch. We had met him on our previous visits and he told me he always enjoyed my opinions about the ranch. So I gave him a very detailed account about our stay up to that point in time. After I sent it, I got an e-mail back stating that Mike was on vacation. Oh, well!

How radioactive are you?

Do you like couple massages in the same room? Or should they be two singles?

Do you perform Karaoke, and are you a booze hound?

A day at Saratoga Race Track. August 11, 2018

‘Every three years the Baker Street Irregulars, the premier Sherlock Holmes Society in the US has a weekend meeting centered around the flat track at Saratoga. The event starts Friday night with several attendees pregaming with dinner and libations. They stay at the Desmond in Albany. Since our house in Lake George is only thirty minutes from the track we pregame at our house and meet the rest at the track on Saturday afternoon. On Sunday morning there are speakers that discuss two of the stories in the CANON (all the Sherlock Holmes Stories). Since we don’t sleep over with the rest of the group (in separate rooms of course!), we don’t attend the breakfast. You are spared a recounting of Sunday mornings adventures at the meeting. I can hear a collective sigh of relief!

I am not that into Sherlock Holmes, preferring as you all know, Romance stories and Erotica. But, as a dutiful spouse, I tag along to the meetings in Poughkeepsie presented by our local Scion-The Hudson Valley Sciontologists. Not to be confused with scientists, or Sinologists or Scientologists!

Going to the track in Saratoga is always a fun day, and I get to wear a hat! So far I have worn my fancy hat about four times. That brings it down to almost $50 a wearing. Hopefully the hat will soon pay me to be worn!

There is a fancy hat shop in Saratoga, the hats there are about $800 each. Needless to say, I covet them. However as we don’t own a horse, I am not getting that fancy a hat. Although it is cheaper than a Hermès Birkin handbag!

Well, enough background, let’s go to the Races! Saratoga is only open about six weeks a year. It was opened in 1863. The big race of the year is the Travers race. Which often has some of the horses that entered the Derby, Preakness and Belmont. Many years ago Steve and I were there to witness the battle between Affirmed and Alydar in 1978. I can’t remember anything about that day except it was very crowded!

I have done a little research for you to help me try to remember why that day was so special. The horses had raced against each other nine times before. Affirmed had won the Triple Crown, Alydar had won only two of the other nine races. Many of the races were quite close, with Affirmed beating Alydar by a nose in one race! So the stakes were quite high! It was going to be quite the spectacle, over 50,000 fans were there to watch the race. Affirmed was disqualified during the race, and Alydar was declared the winner of their last final race. Many of the fans were booing and quite upset.

Here is a link to the horse race. Affirmed and Alydar Here we see Steve checking the Program guide with Charlie. No, the man with the glasses is not checking me out, there was a television monitor displaying the odds and horses. We were in the Pavilion. We had a buffet, and the room was air conditioned. Always nice on a hot day. However you really don’t have the same feeling as you do sitting out in the Club House or Grandstand.

Here I am in my nice red hat and basic black. The official Baker Street Irregular colors were black and red. I do aim to please! I bought the top with Sally when we last visited my Mother. I thought the top looked a bit silly on the rack, but it looked great on a real body!

There are always interesting characters at the track. I loved the guy on the left with his blue and white jacket with stars and bright red pants! Then there was the suave guy with the plaid jacket and shirt open down to there! This is my collection from the dessert buffet. I tried everything , even though they were not very tasty. At one point we did go outside to watch a race. The white tent in the back is where the Pavilion is located. That sexy brown and white shoulder is Joan. One of the other ladies in our group wore a red hat also. I am biased and like mine a bit better!The number four horse was called “Grandma Gertie”. Joan wanted money bet on her as she had a Grandma named Gertie. Did she win? Who knows? Perhaps Joan will answer in a comment!

This gentleman and his lovely wife came all the way from Ohio to attend the race and the conference. I of course asked him if he was bald, as so many gentleman wear hats now when they are bald. He surprised me with his beautiful head of hair! Here is closeup of her hat! It was really a cream color. After realizing that he had made ten cents for the day, Steve agreed to call it an early day and we should go for an early dinner and walk to the restaurant. I am not sure how Steve and Charlie did, but another couple from our group was quite successful. I am not sure how well Lee did, but he did win $39 one race! So we said goodbye to the track and were off to Siro’s. sirosny.com

Here are Joan and Charlie, along with Steve checking out the restaurant. No Joan is not checking out the man’s butt, her head is much more elevated. Plus she has seen much better butts.

There is also an outside bar at Siro’s that is quite popular. We ate in the restaurant, which held a much more night class crowd.

All during dinner I was scanning the room. I was looking for famous people, but none showed up while we were there. At one point I joked that I was going to grab the reservation book to look up who was going to be there! Last time we were there I saw Curtis Sliwa and Arthur Aidala.

Steve and Charlie had the salad with nuts and raspberries.

Nancy and Lee elected to share the 2 pound lobster. At $30 per pound, the waiter was trying to upsell them to a larger lobster. Lee and Nancy thought the starter lobster would be sufficient. It was. They did offer a four pounder at $120!

Here is the lobster deshelled. There was a lot of meat. I had the halibut with creamed corn. It was very good.

Joan had the mahi mahi. The sauces were really good. Steve had the swordfish that was a wee bit over cooked. He said the risotto was really good, although a trifle heavy. Charlie had the duck. It was cooked in the sous vide method, so he wasn’t crazy about it.

No room for the dessert. I am sure it was yummy. Do you think the ricotta fritters and the cherry clafouti were free?

Dinner was over and Steve and I headed back north to our place in Lake George. Charlie and Joan headed back to Albany for the presentations in the morning. Lee and Nancy headed home. We were happy that we asked for our reservations to be moved up to 5:30 from 6:30 as people down the hill from us were going to put on a fireworks show. Here are the last 2 and a half minutes of the show.

Do you like Sherlock Holmes?

Do you prefer the flat track, or harness racing?

Would you rather bet and win or not bet at all since you hate losing?

Do you like fireworks?