2015 Reviews, Previews & Predictions

by Bob Sparrow


The Eagles backstage – me, NOT!

–  For me 2014 started here with the discovery, or rather the re-discovery, of The Tape’ – a mysterious offering from dearly departed, best friend, Don of Saudi Arabia, which has turned into an allegorical journey in search of . . . ? More discoveries are coming in 2015.

  •     –  Last year’s backstage cocktail party with the Eagles turned out to be more of a nose-bleed seat and a hot dog in the balcony, but their music was still magical.

–  I watched a car salesman, beaten and bloody, slink into his manager’s office with his tail between his legs as Linda drove away in her new 2015 Chevy Yukon

–  In 2014 I learned that Samoans, by any other name (even one as misleading as Caramel deLites) are still my favorite Girl Scout cookie, although I understand I’ll be paying more for them in 2015 – what a surprise!

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Missing woman turns into a homicide

–  The case of missing Carley Scott, to which I was introduced by a hitch-hiker I picked up on the ‘Road to Hana’, turned into a homicide when Carley’s jawbone and burned clothes were found by police. Ex-boyfriend, Steven Capobianco has gone from a ‘person of interest’ to being charged with murder.  Trial is set for sometime in 2015.

–  An economic forecast: I predict that 2015 will find Reverse Mortgages moving Forward.

–  Independence Day (not the 4th of July!) revealed our founding fathers to be just as quirky as some of today’s politicians, which is no easy task!


Trekking the Himalayas

–  If my adventure to South Africa in 2013 was the ‘Trip of a Lifetime’, then my adventure in Nepal and the Himalayas last year was the ‘Trek of a Lifetime’ – it was a spectacular journey! I’m glad many of you could join me vicariously through my daily posts. I am now frequently asked, “Hey, where are ‘we’ going next?” Stay tuned.

–  It wasn’t as foreign, but just as beautiful – that’s the trekking through Glacier Nat’l Park, Yellowstone, and Alberta, Canada and our visit to neighbors the Nelsons at their second home on Flathead Lake, Montana this past summer. You’re all probably wondering if after our encounter in Jackson Hole, WY, if Sandra Bullock will ever leave me alone . . . more on that later.

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Is she still stalking me?

–  Earlier this year, while making a fool of myself at some of our ‘local’ tourist spots like Venice Beach, the Western White House and the Queen Mary, I missed my induction into the University of Utah Athletic Hall of Fame – it’s just as well, it turned out that they had plenty of ‘red shirts’ to clear the dishes and sweep up after.

–  Twenty fourteen concluded with a tribute to, and a debate with, my favorite sister, my favorite writing companion and simply one of my favorite people on this planet.  If you’re a regular you know she writes so well from the heart, while I tend to write from somewhere around the elbow, but whatever your preference, I predict much more of the same coming from us in 2015.

–  A big thank you to our regular readers in 2014 for enjoying our writing enough to encourage us to keep on doing it. Truth is, we’d probably do it anyway, but you need to know that your comments, your ‘sharing’ and your subscriptions make it a labor of love for us. Thank you so much!


Bob & Suzanne wishing you an adventurous 2015!

If you’re not already a subscriber, we encourage you to become a ‘bird watcher’ in 2015 and follow and ‘share’ our adventures and observations.  That’s at least a resolution you can keep!

Hope you make 2015 matter.

Jackson Hole Dilemma: Should I Call Sandra Bullock?

by Bob Sparrow

snake river

Rafters on Snake River

It was my favorite kind of flight from Long Beach to Salt Lake – uneventful. Back to Long Beach for a moment; for those who might be looking to fly into Southern California and find LAX too busy and Orange County too expensive, try Long Beach Airport, it’s a great little airport half way between the two. OK, enough of the travel tips. Mark & Kathy picked us up in Salt Lake and we took the ‘long way’ (Hwy 89) to Jackson Hole, Wyoming which is what I would recommend for anyone making that trip unless you love driving on Interstate freeways. OK, that’s my last travel tip.  Highway 89 is resplendent with spectacular scenery through Logan Canyon, Bear Lake and along the Snake River into Jackson Hole.


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Where Sandra and I met

I had last been to Jackson Hole some 44 years ago . . . it’s changed a bit, me too. The town is built around the ‘Town Square’ (When I was last here the Town Square, was the town), and is filled with outdoorsy and cowboy kinds of shops – if you’re looking for a cowboy hat, this is the place!  It is apparently not the place for fine dining, unless you consider Buffalo Burgers gourmet. But we managed to secure a second story balcony table at the Town Square Tavern that afforded us a panoramic view of the Town Square where we enjoyed a nice dinner as a beautiful evening settled over the town.

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Sandra, on a rare occasion when she wasn’t looking at me

It was apparent from outward appearances that ‘The Million Dollar Cowboy Bar’ was ‘the’ place to be after 9:00 p.m. in Jackson Hole, and this seemed like the perfect spot for Linda to keep her promise to several lady work colleagues to bring them back a cowboy.  We headed there after dinner and had just settled into a table next to the dance floor when the band was playing and when a group of eight young ladies came in and took the table next to us. After way too long a wait without a drink, the server came over to us and apologized and said that she had to take care of the ladies next to us first as the group included Sandra Bullock and comedienne Chelsea Handler. She told us not to look over there, which we did.  I looked straight at Sandra Bullock, who was sitting no more than 10 feet from me and she was looking straight back at me, smiling. I smiled back and looked away, as did she. For the next 30 minutes or so I tried to stay engaged in our table’s conversation, but I was unnerved as every time I looked over Sandra’s way, she was looking at me. At one point I thought she kind of motioned me to ask her to dance, but I wasn’t certain and when I told Linda she reminded me that I didn’t know how to do those ‘western dances’; which had never stopped me in the past, but I acquiesced . After about 30 minutes, Sandra and her group finished their drinks and got up to leave. I swear that as Sandra was leaving she put her thumb to her ear, her little finger to her lips and mouthed, “Call me.” I obviously was flattered, but of course didn’t have her number and wondered if she was going to leave it with the hostess to bring over to me later.


Chelsea, who never looked at me

OK, none of this really happened except the part that Sandra Bullock and Chelsea Handler came in and sat at the table next to us; my imagination sort of took over from there. I did manage to sneak this picture of Ms Bullock and will be calling TMZ later to see if they want to buy it.

Stay tuned.


My Real ‘Next Adventure’

by Bob Sparrow

yogiSince returning from Nepal, I have been asked a number of times about my next adventure; it seems some of you folks take a perverse pleasure in watching me bust my ass in some far-off, third-world country. I am indeed embarking on my next adventure and no, it’s not to Yemen, Somalia, Syria or the Antarctica “just before they close it for the winter” – but thank you Sister Suzanne and several loyal subscribers for your amusing, albeit life-threatening, suggestions. I’m trading in that 26-hour, back-wrenching, butt-numbing flight, for a short hop within the U.S. borders this time. And while this trip may not be as exotic as traveling through Nepal, I’m hoping it will provide a unique look at the spectacular beauty of my favorite part of the country.

I’ll have more company on this adventure, as it will be with couples from ‘the ‘hood’, affectionately, or maybe that’s ‘infectionately’, referred to as the ‘Hoodwink Hikers’. The ‘Hoodwink Hikers’ include our ‘Trail Boss’, Patrick (my Nepal companion) and his wife, Pam; long-time close friends, Mark & Kathy; the comic relief couple, Bob & Jeanne and Linda and me. We are headed to the ‘Intermountain West’ for some hiking and hijinks, not necessarily in that order.


‘The Harvard of the West’

Our plan is to fly into Salt Lake City (home to my son’s and my alma mater, Westminster College, or as we alums like to refer to it, the Harvard of the West), take the beautiful drive from Salt Lake to the Old West town of Jackson Hole, Wyoming, which sits in the shadow of the Grand Teton Mountains. We’ll spend a couple of days cavorting in the surrounding environs then head to Yellowstone Nat’l Park. Once we’ve seen ‘Old Faithful’ and Yogi Bear (or is that in Jellystone Nat’l Park?) we’ll continue north to join another couple from the ‘hood, Mike & Tanis, who have a second home on Flathead Lake in Polson, Montana. We figure to wear out our welcome there after a couple of days, so we’ll be heading further north to Lake McDonald, which is in scenic Glacier Nat’l Park, where we’ll do some hiking. Some will hike and some will take a tour bus on the picturesque road over the Continental Divide called, ‘Going To The Sun Road’ (sounds long . . . and hot!). We’ll then journey on to Many (pronounced Manny) Glacier for a night.

Jackson Hole

Exclusive Hotel in Jackson Hole

Our final stop will be so far north that it’s south . . . south Canada – a place called Prince of Wales in Alberta, where we’ll stay in a majestic old ‘railroad hotel’ in the Canadian Rockies. We will then drive back to Kalispell, Montana (assuming they will let us back into the country) and fly home.

That’s the plan, but anyone who’s been following our blog, knows that sometimes we deviate from the plan – and with this group of deviates, no plan is safe. Connectivity permitting, I’ll try to post what we actually do and maybe even include some videos, if my son shows me how to do that before we leave. Hope you tag along and enjoy the trip. As always you’re welcome to send me your comments while you’re sitting comfortably on your couch at home eating Bon Bons and I’m busting my ass on that Draconian-sounding road to the center of our solar system.

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