Thursday, May 27, 2010

How to Take a Relaxing Weekend Vacation (Part 2 of 2)

OK, so if you haven't read the first part of this wonderful how-to document, I would suggest going here and reading it first. It is not an integral part of the story, but it will help with continuity. Except the numbers are starting back at one. Mostly because I am too lazy to figure out how to get it to keep counting from #29.

  1. Once you get some sleep, you will feel better. The morning is sunny and perfect and the town is beautiful. It is also your birthday, so you are pretty sure that everything will work out the way you want. And, you won't have to drive anywhere all day.

  2. There are a few things that you notice right away that do not in any way deter you from having a good time:

    • The brewery next door won't serve food one minute after 10PM.
    • Your window looks out into the lobby of the building.
    • Your hotel room wall is right next to the ice machine and elevators.
    • There seems to be a large number of children running up and down the hallways.
    • The people upstairs apparently start doing calisthenics at 7AM.

  3. Despite these things, you are in a pretty good mood.

  4. Shower and dress quickly in order to begin your action packed (but relaxing) day.

  5. Get directions to a nearby breakfast eatery in the hotel lobby. There is one just down the street. As soon as you exit the hotel, a couple of teenage girls is a strange spandex uniform will run by. They are wearing race bibs, but there are no streets blocked off or other people around. Two girl race?

  6. As you arrive at your eating destination, notice more girls running, this pair is in matching skirts, and also in bibs. On further inspection of the street, there are multiple pairs of people dressed alike in various age groups running this way and that. Consider the possibility that yesterday's stress drove you crazy.

  7. Have a nice hearty bacon and eggs type breakfast. Food is decent, coffee OK, and you are ready to go!

  8. First on the itinerary is to visit Doc Holiday's tombstone at the pioneer cemetery a few blocks away.

  9. Wonder if you are really that out of shape when you are winded walking to the trailhead.

  10. When you get to the trailhead, some of your questions will be answered. There is a person standing there with a clipboard. She tells you it is the "first ever Oyster Race", and admits it is kind of like a race/scavenger hunt, but doesn't go in to details. Yay! You aren't crazy.

  11. Walk up to the pioneer cemetery. It is beautiful out, if a bit windy. The hike is not nearly as long as you remember, and the views are spectacular. A few runners go by, both going up and down. One even stops to take you and your boyfriend's picture, which is nice.

  12. The cemetery will be a little crowded and weird with all the race people, and there will also be people trying to quietly and reverently take care of the graves, which is a strange contrast. And then... and then... you see him....


  13. After a momentary panic where you start combining wild west stories with zombie fiction, you build up the nerve to go over and see what the hell.

  14. He turns out not to be a gunslinger zombie, ghost, or whatever, but a period actor (you assume, even though he does speak with a soft, educated, southern accent and is... kinda creepy).

  15. After a while, you realize that the runners are coming up to him, handing him random items like dental floss, and getting their picture taken with him. It is one of the check-in spots on the race.

  16. As you edge closer, trying to get a picture of the tombstone without getting in the way of the racers with the pictures, there is a crowd lull. (Creepy) Doc Holiday will turn to you and say, "Would you like your picture taken between runners?" "DO I?" You say enthusiastically, and get several pictures, and hold his gun. Which is awesome.

  17. You and your boyfriend leave shortly thereafter. You will feel proud that you were brave enough to get your photo with Zombie Doc Holiday.

  18. Head back to the hotel to clean up.

  19. While you are there, your parents will arrive in town (this was planned), and you meet them and some friends at the Glenwood Canyon Brewery for lunch.

  20. Drink beer.

  21. After lunch, head up to the Glenwood Caverns for a tour.

  22. Due to wind, you will not get to ride the tram up Iron Mountain, but an 80's style school bus with grinding brakes up a steep, winding, switchback road with huge drop offs on either side. Be reminded of childhood, and pretend it is fun.

  23. Once you arrive safely at the amusement park at the top, realize that you have a good 45 minutes before your tour starts.

  24. You will notice that the giant swing that goes over the canyon is closed because of the wind, but the gravity powered individually controller roller coaster is not.

  25. Your boyfriend will buy you a ticket, and you will sit in the cart, but you might be wondering what the fuck you are doing.

  26. It is quite suddenly your turn to go. You go, without thinking, but scream a little. Or maybe more than a little. As you pass the first turn, you can't decide if it is ironic in some way or just sad that you will die on your birthday.

  27. Eventually, you will have fun, and the ride will be over too soon.

  28. The cave tour begins. You walk into a dark pit inside of Iron Mountain. The tour is awesome, although you are a little distracted trying to get good pictures on your camera without a tripod.

  29. After the tour, you ride the freakishly old bus back down the mountain, survive the ride, and walk back over to the brewery.

  30. Eat snacks, more beer, and then head up to your hotel room for your swimming suit. Time to enjoy the hot springs!!!

  31. This is the first time you have gone swimming since getting lasik. It is everything you hope for and more. The pool is warm and smells of sulfer. Your long hair will wrap around your arms and try to drown you more than once. You will get yourself to jump off the diving board, and manage to not lose your suit. It is generally a good time.

  32. A couple hours later, you are beat. You and your party should head back to the hotel.

  33. Change your clothes and clean up a little. Head down to the brewery for dinner.

  34. Get carded for a beer even though you have been here more than once today, and you are 34 years old. Best. Present. Ever.

  35. Eat steak. Drink beer.

  36. Start nodding off at the table. You're done!

Chances are you will survive your drive home, and won't hit any traffic, your car won't explode and the brakes won't go out, and don't, whatever you do, think about work again until Monday morning. For the next three or four days, you will catch the smell of sulfer in your hair, and be happy.

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