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Hanging out up north

Wish you were here

I have been in Boulder, Colorado, this past week and will be here for another ten or so days. It is spring here (and I left late autumn in Buenos Aires), when the front range mountain weather is at its most volatile and interesting. My younger daughter, her husband, and their two daughters, Brooke and Brenna, live here. They work for the University of Colorado. My granddaughters are nine and six. Yesterday I attended the elder granddaughter’s soccer game at a recreation field below Boulder’s famous flatirons. These gorgeous climbing rocks:

The flatirons in Boulder

I loved the day being a soccer Mom, or I suppose that would more accurately be a soccer Granddad. Brooke’s team won, 4 to 1, and Brooke made two of those goals.

She had incentive. Her father and I offered to give her ten bucks for each goal she made; he would pay for the first, I would pay for the second, and then we would alternate. I gave her a one dollar bonus for making some really good passes during the game, so Brooke has now figured out there is money to be made in sports.

In the old days, when my body still functioned well enough, I used to climb around here. Now I gaze at these fantastic rocks and the snow-capped peaks behind them, and marvel with memory.

I have not worked in a while, not since a day or two before coming up here, but I think the next ten days will offer more opportunities, and there are some interesting cafes strung along Pearl Street in Boulder. I’ve got shopping to do, things that one either cannot find or cannot find at the same level of quality down south. Like Levis 505 jeans, substantial padded coat hangers, refills for my Pelikan and Mt. Blanc pens.

If you’re in the neighborhood during the next ten days, let me know and we’ll down a Fat Tire or two.

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11 replies »

      • I’ve been thinking about it, but it’s just a bad time with work (our busiest time of the year is summer) and money isn’t plentiful at the moment either. Oh, I’m tempted though. It’s a 14 hour drive, I think, the last time I took it.

        Oh, the last time…

        Those mountains are beautiful. They are. They knuckle out of the ground the way old grief becomes new again.

          • Well, I’m still thinking about it even though the scenery wouldn’t be as stunning with Rose and Tracey absent. I hope you’re enjoying your grandkids. How much longer are you there?

            • My flight to the deep south is 3 June. So a little over a week more. This weekend is some large holiday event, and I will spend most of it with my family, including watching my 9 year old granddaughter run a 10K — the Bolder Boulder. That is Monday. Court has my cell phone number here and we have not yet made any plans beyond the most tentative. That would be a damn long drive, Brad, just to have a beer, maybe lunch. But I imagine you have done crazier things. Get in touch with Rose and Tracey; maybe we can induce them to fly over, or up, depending. Now that would be crazy beyond crazy. Just to consider it is enough for me. So thanks.

  1. I’ve never felt the urge to climb, as in properly. I don’t mind a good walk culminating in fantastic views however and this one looks pretty good to me.
    I forget sometimes you’re a Granddad, glad you’re spending time with the family and making the most of the shopping.

    • I am major granddad right now — soccer matches, gymnastics and dance lessons, mucho shopping, and this morning a rousing game of Monopoly during which I was trounced by a nine year old and a six year old. Guess I don’t have the capitalist instincts.

  2. The flatirons are great rocks, and behind them is ElDorado Canyon, hosting one of the finest rock climbing areas on the planet. I was in downtown Boulder this morning and the view from the cafe where I had lunch wasn’t all that different from the picture above.

    I went to a private bookstore, not part of a chain, and dropped a hundred bucks on books; now I have to figure out how to get them home next week.

    I don’t get to be Grandpa very often, so I relish it when it happens — and as the older granddaughter (9) noticed as we were coming out of a bunch of shops with 4 new Wii games, a couple of glittering handbags, and a pair of hats … “It’s great when Grandpa comes to visit.”

    Okay, now you and Tracey can put aside this granddad business and put me back in my rightful place in your worlds.