Iditarod

Noggin, Chloe, Romano, Jigs and I witnessed a long and lovely sunrise this morning driving east towards Dayton, Ohio.

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For the second year in a row, we presented our Iditarod talk to a 6-week “Iditarod Class”organized by our good friends, “Marty and Kenny,” at the beautiful University of Dayton.

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We enjoyed visiting with everyone, and look forward to seeing you all next year! Both Noggin and I especially loved talking with Chuck Ritter — Professor Emeritus, University of Dayton Geology Department — who gave me a wonderful pep talk supporting my current studies aimed towards a geology degree. I could have chatted with him for hours. Thanks, Chuck!

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All that love can be exhausting…

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Chloe enjoys the view from our favorite motel.

I first stopped at Welsh’s Motel in 1993 on my maiden voyage west from Indiana to attend the University of Montana in Missoula. I met Mr. Wes Welsh that day, and ever since I have looked forward to his warm greeting and smiling face when I walk through the lobby door after a long day of travel. Time passes, and over the years I’ve driven this 1700-mile route 40-some times. This last June, though, Mr. Welsh was not there. When his daughter, Kelly, greeted me, I knew our Mr. Welsh was gone. Kelly has the same big, open heart and beaming smile of her father. Over the registration counter, we shared memories of both her dad and my parents (who had also stayed at Welsh’s over the years). We couldn’t help but cry. They were tears of painful loss but also much joy. We both know how fortunate we are.

I’m traveling west again soon. Headed to my “homes” in South Dakota, and then Montana. Home is where you share your heart. Thank you, Mr. Welsh, for sharing yours…

And Kelly, we’ll be seeing you soon.