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At ease

GLENWOOD SPRINGS – Vacationers escaping to Glenwood Springs for a few days of R&R relaxed at a packed Hot Springs Pool Wednesday afternoon – but the war in Iraq wasn’t far from their minds.”We talked about it all the way up,” said Phoenix Miller of Denver, who was on spring break with her children and husband, Larry.”It’s so relaxing here,” said Larry Miller, standing chest deep in the 104-degree water of the therapy pool. “But a friend of mine who’s an EMT and is in the reserves just got called up. He left yesterday. It’s pretty personal when you know someone who’s over there.””It’s heart-wrenching,” said Phoenix, standing next to Larry, moving her hands across the steaming water.

Gina Abegg and Monte Radack, both from Denver, were enjoying a few days in Glenwood Springs after being “snowed in watching nothing but the war, the NCAA championships and the storm nonstop on CNN,” Radack said. “We’re not watching TV while we’re here,” said Radack, putting down his newspaper and getting up from his poolside chaise longue. “But the war is frustrating. This war isn’t going to be over fast – not in two weeks, and not in two months.””It’s important to balance and focus on peace in spite of what’s going on,” said Abegg, an early-childhood educator, as she soaked in the therapy pool. “I do believe in healing during times of crisis. And, for children, it’s important for them to act in a healing way – to send care packages to the troops overseas, just like planting trees during the fires last summer.”The Rundle family from Nederland – Dean, Janice and son Mike, 14 – was lounging next to the big pool Wednesday afternoon.”We’re trying to get on with life, but it’s still in the back of my mind,” said Dean of the war. “I know it’s got to be a lot harder for people with family members over there.” “I feel sorry for the people who are dying,” added Mike. Shanna Rudd of Thornton brought her three children to Glenwood for a couple of days, mainly to get away from Thornton and the aftermath of last week’s blizzard.”We’re sick of snow, so we’re not going skiing,” she said with a smile. “We’re here to enjoy the mountains, leave the city life, wander around town and swim. We’re not watching any TV while we’re here, and I’m trying not to think about the war. I’ll think about it when I go home.”Rudd said her kids – ages 1, 7 and 10 – have varying degrees of understanding about the war, but she’s not dwelling on it while she’s on vacation.”We’re having fun with the kids,” she said. “We’re not thinking about that.”But for Shelly Darville, a wife and mother from Racine, Wisc., taking a break from her real life is just giving her more time to think about the war. She came to Colorado with her 13-month-old son, Scott Thomas, to visit her sister in Colorado Springs. The three came up to Glenwood for a couple days of relaxation.”Going on a vacation during wartime gives me time not to think about my world, and it clears my mind,” she said. “My mind is idle, so it fills up with thoughts of the people over there. I find I’m thinking about them more than ever.” Contact Carrie Click: 945-8515, ext. 518cclick@postindependent.com


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