I did do other things besides complain | Column
by The Press and Standard | July 20, 2019 5:00 pm
Last Updated: July 17, 2019 at 11:27 am
What’s everybody doing this summer? Besides melting into a sticky pool of sweat, I mean. When it’s 76 degrees at 1 a.m., I start to believe in global warming, y’all. What we’ve had lately is “broiling in ****” hot. Somehow, we go about our daily business despite the stifling temps, and most of us don’t drop dead. It’s still miserable.
When I left the house yesterday at 8:30 a.m. for my daily run/walk/limp, the humidity was in the feels-like-a-wet-wool-blanket range. I wore a gray cotton t-shirt and gym shorts. When I staggered home pouring sweat 90 minutes later, I took them off and wrung them out over the kitchen sink.
That’s too dang hot, people.
I did do other things besides complain this summer. Widdle and I went to Colorado, Kansas, Nebraska and Wyoming, primarily because there are no swamps or oceans in those places and thus, no humidity.
I learned a lot on our little getaway.
I learned that you can take a big can of cashews through TSA in a backpack. I learned that bars are filled with people drinking ****** Marys before a morning flight. I learned that the most comfortable seat on a plane is in the back row, and that I can eat a big can of cashews on a four-hour flight. (You should have seen Widdle’s face.) I learned that too many people fly with yappy dogs these days.
I learned that if you trip and crash to the floor when getting off a moving sidewalk in Denver International Airport, people will gasp in horror and rush to help. (Yep—I fell so hard one sandal flew 10 feet. I landed on my left hip and was yelling at Widdle before I hit the floor. I thought it was, “Honey, help!” He swears it was, “Timberrr!” The only thing broken was my pride.)
I learned that going from sea level to a mile-high city will make you dizzy. I learned that an upscale steakhouse in Cheyenne serves a terrific glass of pinot grigio for $3.75. I learned, the hard way, that the top of Pike’s Peak is 40 degrees colder than the bottom of Pike’s Peak.
I learned that the tiny town of St. Francis, Kansas, has a fascinating motorcycle museum. We have zero interest in motorcycles, but popped in on a whim and stayed for two hours. (Google “The Flying Merkel”—it’s a thing of beauty.)
I learned that CVS pharmacies in Colorado are inside Target stores; that Kansas is flatter than the flattest flat you can imagine; that valet parking at Denver hotels averages $45 a night; and that when faced with an enormous free breakfast buffet, I can eat entire platters of yogurt, berries, oatmeal, eggs and granola. I had to lie down until noon, but it was worth it.
I learned there is a place like Kiawah in Colorado and it’s called Vail—it’s tiny and stunningly expensive. I don’t ski, but the scenery is gorgeous.
I learned that Breckenridge, CO. has thrift stores full of used bicycle helmets and streets lined with beautiful Victorian houses. (Also, souvenir t-shirts are much cheaper on the south side.)
I learned that you can drive for 75 miles on Nebraska back roads and never see a grocery store; that a post office can be the size of a telephone booth; and that my husband has awesome powers of concentration. I learned this when he drove 13 miles straight up a mountain while I mewled with fear in the passenger seat.
Julie R. Smith, who still has a lot to learn, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.