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Another d@m# Pike's Peak message (long!)

Yeah, another Pike's Peak message.  (Remember, delete is just a keystroke
away.)  It seems that the particulars have been covered pretty well by others, so
I'll try to keep this report short, but no promises.  Apologies in advance to
uninterested parties.

First, for those of you who decided not to go because of the long drive, you
have my permission to kick yourself repeatedly.  Getting there was half the fun! 
Elizabeth and I met up with Ed Kellock and Leo Wednesday morning in
Nashville, and had a rather spirited run up to StL.  A few close calls with
Smokey didn't slow us down a bit.  We arrived at Applebee's, where there was
one lonely Audi in the lot with STEADI tags.  Yup, this must be the place!

Eric met us outside and showed us a neat little toy in his trunk that will soon be
on the other end of the car, then took us in to meet Bob and Annetta Myers.  It
didn't take long for the Q's to begin pouring in.  A great afternoon of
conversation was punctuated by a group photo session in the parking lot.  Of
course, to balance a photo full of black, grey, and blue sedans,  my tornado red
coupe just _had_ to go right up front in the middle!  (thanks STEADIRIC!)  We
must have shot a hundred photos of that scene.  Ironically, we chose the parking
lot in front of a place called "Chevy's".

We said our goodbyes to the StL folks, then bum rushed a local Amoco.  That
Rustang must have felt pretty nervous amongst our swarm, because he kept
scuffing up his tires trying to get out of there.  ;^)

Now, the real fun started - driving west.  Picture seven Audis single file on the
open interstate.  I made Elizabeth hang out the window to get a few shots of the
guys in formation.  The CBs made a _huge_ difference.  We really came to
know each other well through our little chats, and the time seemed to fly by.  In
a way, it was our own little version of the Q-list.  Only one person talks at a
time, keep your messages relatively short to save bandwidth for others, lots of
helpful information as well as idle chit-chat (both were welcome in our
micro-world), be careful of what you say - you never know who might be
listening, everyone had an alias -- er, handle.  For those scoring at home, here's
a little test:  See if you can match the handle with the driver with the car
(non-proportional font helps here).  All correct respondents will receive a free
pass to ride with us next time; incorrect responses _require_ you to ride with us
next time!

Name                        Handle                Car

Jim Griffin                 Q-man                 '87 5KTQ
Ingo Rautenberg             Bandit                '88 90Q
Brendan Rudack              Pitchfork             '89 200Q
Bob Myers                   Roadkill              '91 200QW
Dan Hussey                  Racing-Iron           '92 100S
Ed Kellock                  Mountain William      '90 CQ
Eric Renneisen              Cornflake             '90 V8Q

As you can see, we had a pretty good cross-section of the breed.  For the second
day of driving, we picked up Gary in his Black '87 Coupe GT (with no working
A/C - this guy is dedicated!)

Then it happened.  Someone jinxed us by mentioning the Audi Gods over the
CB, and shortly thereafter Bob's coolant hose was struck by lightning.  Luckily,
we were all veteran Audi owners.  I counted no less than three toolboxes filled
to the brim (including mine), and I also had a pair of jackstands (ummm - just to
add weight to the rear of the car - yeah - that's it - f/r balance, right Phil?).  The
youngest of our tribe set to work wrenching like an old pro.  Nice job, Brendan!

Once back on the highway, we _had_ to put that hose to the test.  We'd rather
have that hose fail in daylight rather than at sunset in the middle of nowhere,
right?  The V8 usually led the pack during the bouts of testosterone-induced
insanity, but I think the '91 200 wagon held back a little, as did I for fear of
loosing some of my flesh due to co-pilot's fingernails.  The 90Q's exhaust note
at speed (and it had plenty of speed, often) had more than one of us considering
that sort of upgrade.  For the record, I believe each and every one of us had a
dollar and some change at one time or another.  For those who would chastise
us, these conditions were as safe as any, save the track.  The roads were wide,
straight, and clear; traffic was light; and we had a pole sitter to warn of
upcoming hazards.  Just good clean fun.  :^)

The scene in CO Springs has been discussed already, so I'll just add a ditto.  I
only wish we had more time to get acquainted with everyone.  If anyone is
wondering, I was the one with the Jed Clampett hat sitting in the lawn chair with
a green blanket wrapped around my entire body.  I was also the guy standing on
the outside of the sweeping lefthand turn, taking pictures and dodging the dust
and gravel from the oversteering beasts.

After the group dispersed, Elizabeth and I headed north for Boulder, a day of
hiking on the Continental Divide, and some fine Shakespearean drama.  The
drive home seemed to be two or three times as long.  The thick slang of the
truckers was all we had to keep us company.  We only spotted three Audis after
we left Denver.  Next time we should plan a return caravan.

I would like to thank everyone who had a hand in pulling this thing off.  It's
amazing to me that such a diverse group of people can come together and just
have fun.  Count me in for the next one!  I'll even help plan it.  Let's see... how
does next weekend sound to everyone?

Oh yeah, special thanks to Unka Bart for giving Elizabeth a ride in the p-car. 
Now _my_ car doesn't impress her anymore!  Actually, I think her favorite was
the V8Q.  You'd never guess that thing has close to 200Kmi on the clock!

Racing-Iron out.

P.S.  We found the ice cream cone!