Where All The Children Are Above Average

What a crazy cool, long day. We started the events off with a trip up to the mountains. Mary Jo isn’t known in these parts (or any parts really) as the most likely to enjoy a trip on a mountainous road, but she wanted to get up into ‘them there hills’ and do a little fear-facing along the way. We settled on a trip to Breckenridge, which is all interstate and a short trip down a smaller road….but no high mountain passes without guardrails (we’re saving that for next time).

The drive up there was great: no traffic, easy driving, beautiful scenery, and nobody was scared in the car. I think that it went a lot easier than some of us had imagined and we were treated to some snow-capped 14’ers along the way. If you have never spent much time in Colorado, the time when the mountains look their toughest is when they have a little snowfall on the peaks, giving them a Himalayan effect – just like yesterday. When we arrived in Breckenridge, we headed up to the Peak 9 drop off area because Ezra needed to eat and we needed some seclusion to do that. While Ahna and Ezra enjoyed their time together, Mary Jo and I wandered around the ski lifts and the ski run immediately next to them. We talked skiing and lift riding, and did a little wandering around. 

For lunch we went to a local/tourist favorite (it’s a strange place that is a heavy attractant to both of those groups) called Downstairs At Eric’s. Here’s another one of those moments that we never noticed before: it’s called ‘Downstairs’ because it’s in the basement…fair enough…but there isn’t an elevator because it’s old enough…which makes it a little tougher with a kid and stroller. We managed, but it sure would have been nicer. Following lunch we simply wandered the streets and the shops until it was time to pull anchor and head home. 

This is where the story gets frustrating. It’s a singular frustration that consumed 1.5 hours….paving on the east side of the Eisenhower Tunnel…which lead to a back up that took 90 minutes to cover about 5 miles. Normally that would have ended the stress, but we were trying to get home before heading up to a concert at Red Rocks (!) to exchange clothing and grab blankets. The entirety of the time delay resulted in Ahna driving home (and making great time) and us having just about 40 minutes before needing to head out again for the evening. We had hoped to allow Ezra to stretch out a little more, but he was doing okay and we had to get to the show (the tickets where under my name at will call). 

You might be wondering what rockin’, jammin’, dancin’ show we went to…well, it was Garrison Keillor and A Prairie Home Companion. It’s a little on the ‘subdued’ side of the rock show spectrum, but Ahna and I agreed that it might have been one of the top five shows that we have ever seen. Both of us (and now Ezra) grew up listening to A Prairie Home Companion on the radio and to this day we enjoy finding it on weekend public radio. So when we heard that he was going to be in town at the same time that Mary Jo was here and my folks weren’t traveling, we had to go (it really would have been the cat’s meow if Dave where here….so perhaps we all will have to catch the show in St. Paul sometime). They were on the Rhubarb Tour, which is essentially the show without the live-radio recording – and more than 3 hours long. All of the stories and the songs where there; and I think the highlight was watching the impromptu story telling between Keillor and Fred Newman (the sound effects guy).  

On top of the great show, it was wonderful to introduce my parents, Mary Jo, Don, and Sonja to Red Rocks. We couldn’t have asked for a better evening, and even the moon made a dramatic appearance in the sky line roughly halfway through the show (the moonrise was red). After being to lots of rock shows at Red Rocks, it was a little strange to be there with the crowd last night: there was a great mix of dreadlocks, Grateful Dead t-shirts, 30-something hippies (like us), and older folks. Because of the type of show, the audience was deathly silent – so much so that any peep from Ezra made people from five rows turn around and look. When I went to the restroom, I was the only one in there….a very far cry from the lines and crowds that the others shows have had. It was weird but really neat. The show was close to being sold out, but there was enough room for us to spread out a little and lay Ezra down for a quick nap. He really enjoyed all of the sights and sounds of his first Red Rocks experience.

We opted not to bring in the camera with us since we had a handful of other stuff, so these images from the camera-phone will have to suffice (if you look really closely at the night shot, you can see the red moon rising on the horizon). There are also three pictures from Breck that are mixed in.

Comments

  1. That’s terrific! Sounds like so much fun – except for the traffic part. We missed you all last night. See you soon?

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