May 24, 2013

Reorientation to the Motherland. Phase Two: Colorado

Ah yes. Today is a new day. While yesterday's serious post, Grief and Rain and Clouds and Rest, was written on a day similar to today (rainy and cloudy-- here's to you, Portland), I feel as if it is a great day to begin anew. Today there is hope. Why? Because I'm looking forward to the weekend:

  • Memorial Day Celebration in Portland (who knows what this great town will have up its sleeve this weekend)!
  • Out with May. In with June. During my lovely childhood, this time of year was always the start of summer fun for me; not so much for my parents. You see, my parents owned a campground in the heart of Amish Country, PA. To them, Memorial Day meant the start of tourist season: no longer having lives and the giving of their souls to the running the campground 24/7. Right, Mom? To me, Memorial Day was the start of one long summer-party of making new friends, sitting around the campfire, playing with my cats, and lots and lots of swimming! 
  • Catching up with a friend who I haven't seen in years and years and years!
  • I've got a few things up my sleeve here on 66B solely for your entertainment and inspiration. How they play out really just depends on how long I can push off committing to a job (let's be honest, I can't afford to push that off at all).

But really, my dear readers, let us go back in time to the final week in March. To refresh our memories, let me remind you of what and where these Turners were in life: We had spent one month catching up with my family and friends in PA after returning to the states. We attempted to begin our road trip on a certain Monday- but then a snowstorm hit. We tried on Tuesday- but then our car broke down. Wednesday brought the gift of sickness to my better half. And Thursday, well, Thursday we sped off into the sunrise.

We were supposed to visit a few special friends on our way out, but, sadly, had to rearrange due to the late start. So after a hop, skip, driving under the speed limit the entire way, and an extremely long jump through Kansas, we arrived in Colorado thirsty and aggravated (A bored county sheriff decided to pull us over-- first time for me!-- 10 minutes from our destination for having a burned out brake light).

Usually my time with my in-laws is hilarious fun and games. While this time was essentially that, the underlying stress of finding an apartment and job in Portland and the search that accompanies it, ruled my emotions for most of the days. And while it all worked out eventually (THAT will come later), living within said moment was not fun. However, Andrew's family did a wonderful job at distracting me from my stresses as much as they could. Here are the highlights:

  • Thrift shopping
  • Visiting one of Andrew's many childhood hometowns
  • Coming this close to the St. Louis Arch.
  • Spending the day in Ikea (I shopped; Andrew and Josh made up Ikea games to bide the time.)
  • Rediscovering the quaint town of Manitou Springs
  • Witnessing the destruction of the Waldo Canyon Wildfires that took place last fall
  • Making and eating the perfect pizza
  • Many, many high school baseball games!
  • Working our way through ALL of Jane Austen's movies 
  • Catching up with our Colorado friends
  • In-N-Out, Salt Lake City. On our first date, Andrew promised to take me to In-N-Out some day because of the overall deliciousness of it. The only problem was they are only in select locations in the west. Eight years later, his promise kept! It was delicious! PS- Is it just me, or is Salt Lake City absolutely beautiful!?!
His old elementary school in Illinois!

Great photo for shooting out a car window at 60mph!

Waldo Canyon Fire destruction...

...trying to rebuild. 

More destruction.

Kissing Camels, Garden of the Gods.

Favorite restaurant in Manitou Springs.

They did a wonderful job with my veg patty!

Adam's Mountain Cafe.

Adam's Mountain Cafe.

Manitou Springs.

Manitou Springs.

The following photos are meant to make you very jealous and extremely hungry...


Highlight? The mounds of fried onions!

Also, did you know In-N-Out has individually-packaged hot banana peppers and you can ask for as many as you want? Unfortunately, we did not realize this until after our meal. Next time...
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