Our road trips always start off with coffee. Specifically Dutch Bros. coffee. Northern Colorado has finally been gifted with the finest export Oregon has had to offer since the discovery of oregano. My girlfriend, Elise, and I enjoy the upbeat attitude and top notch customer service we get the second we pull up into the drive-thru.
It’s not just getting coffee, it’s like getting a hello and a high-five from some really cool friends to start your day. Unlike other coffee places, their attitude is never sour, arrogant, or dismissive. They remember us from visit to visit and each time we stop by it’s like a continuation of a conversation we might have had the last time we stopped by. The people there are freaking awesome and adorable! 13/10 stars.
This last road trip was to celebrate my birthday. We started the day off with Dutch Bros. and headed to Denver to the Cheesecake Factory. I had never been, and so it was one of my favorite presents ever: a new experience. This was the 16th Street Mall location. And I have to say it was easily some of the best food I have enjoyed in the history of ever. The company, of course, made the experience that much better.
For lunch, Elise had the fettuccine alfredo and I had the hibachi steak with wasabi potatoes and tempura asparagus. To wash it down, I had a ginger and whiskey with candied ginger to garnish.
In case you are wondering why there are no pics, this was my birthday, not some Instagram post, thirsty for likes.
To finish off a Friday night, we went to Ft. Collins to go people watching in Old Town Square, which is never a disappointment. People watching has to be one of my favorite activities. Whether it is trying to make up scenarios and stories based on what people are doing or how they are acting, or if it is just the sheer WTF nature of what they are up to, it’s free, it’s fun, and nobody gets hurt. We are all here for a good time, not a long time.
Since this was my birthday weekend, we started Saturday off with more Dutch Bros. and a four hour drive up through the mountains to Glenwood Springs. It was sort of a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants trip we hadn’t really planned. I have been there a few times before, but never had the pleasure of sharing the experience with someone else until now.
Listening to great music and sharing stories about our lives made the drive feel a lot shorter than it probably was. There, we enjoyed Iron Mountain Hot Springs, where there was more people watching, enjoyment of adult beverages in a number of the variety of pools at the resort, and even some refreshing cucumber and lime water provided for the guests. It was a welcomed treat for the both of us from our daily lives to just sit in hot pools and let the mineral water pull all the stress out as we watched the sun set on the Rocky Mountains.
A stop off at Uncle Pizza on the way home proved once again that sometimes the hole in the wall places are the best. I can’t say I’ve ever had better pizza. Truly amazing. Though eating piping hot pizza and zipping along the Glenwood Canyon in the dark is probably not the best way to enjoy it!
There are no pictures of our trip because at the time we were just having too much fun enjoying ourselves to document every little thing. Sometimes the experience is like that. In my opinion, I think some people are too focused on showing everyone they are having a good time, rather than just enjoying the moment.
Like “LOOK AT US!! THIS IS SO MUCH FUNNNN!!!!111”
Really? Is it that much fun? I have been places where everyone is just grumbling and having a terrible time until the camera phones come out and it’s all duck face and peace signs and hashtagging the shit out of “summer vibes” and “squad goals.” Embarrassing.
I think when you are truly having a great time, you forget about things like checking your messages, returning texts, or even what time it is. You are captivated by the moment, as well as your company, and that is something I think we all need to do better, especially in these times.
Road trips are awesome experiences because they are often based around a loose agenda. You have a destination, maybe, and everything that happens from Point A to Point B and back again is entirely subject to whim. Every mile has the potential to bring with it a new experience, a detour to some other adventure you never could have planned, and that is so valuable.
Elise and I have made impromptu stops on other road trips from mini-golf to finding new ciders to try to discovering applewood smoked cheddar cheese pairs nicely with a Rocky Patel and scottish ale.
We ended this weekend with a bottle of merlot and cigars on the back porch, watching the moon rise. It was a perfect end to my last weekend of being 43. And I have to say it doesn’t bother me that we don’t have any pictures to document our trip. Fine company, new experiences, and making memories are all part of the journey. Not everything has to be plastered on social media. The details are ours, with some of the highlights posted here just because it was too good not to share.
Here’s to the beginning of the most recent trip around the sun. So far, it is off to a wonderful start!