“I expected the Rocky Mountains to be a little rockier than this.”
“I was thinking the same thing. That John Denver’s full of shit man.” –Dumb & Dumber
We spent 14 hours driving the first day, making it to Topeka, Kansas. It was around 5 in the afternoon and our hotel was in downtown. In any city or town in the world at this time in the day, there would be some form of traffic. Not Topeka! What a ghost town. Not a soul…well maybe a few other cars driving around but it was deserted. It was pretty weird to see that, but I guess no complaints because getting to the hotel was quick.
After a nights rest we pushed on to Denver. For those of you who have driven across Colorado will know what I’m talking about here. Driving west all you can really think about are the mountains. It’s pretty much why you go to the western side of the US. So when you cross the Colorado state line you almost expect the Rockies to just appear in the distance. It’s actually pretty funny because you can’t help but to quote Dumb & Dumber.
Eastern Colorado is identical to Kansas, so it’s nothing but flat expansive land. From the Eastern state line you still have about 3 hours of driving until the mountains emerge in eyesight. As you slowly approach them you can’t help but to marvel at them. You can’t really tell which ones are snow capped or if it’s the clouds because they are so high. Pure excitement rushed through me. I couldn’t wait to begin this new life.
With no rush to leave Kansas in the morning we came into Denver at rush hour, but this time there were people in the city. Traffic was pretty nuts, but nothing new coming from Atlanta. Another thing that reminded me of Atlanta was the skyline. I knew Denver was a decent sized city, but I kind of thought it would still have that small mountain town feel. It felt like I had arrived in Atlanta, but with mountains right next to the city.
My friends, Corey and Justin, welcomed us into their apartment. Corey was nice enough to even let us sleep in his bed while my girlfriend was there. But once she left, I’d be on the couch. Corey took us into Golden where we had dinner and I started to try out all the local brews that Colorado has to offer. That’s kind of a hobby of mine. I love trying new beers everywhere I travel. Pretty much every time I go somewhere new, a local brewery is where I first go.
The rest of the weekend we were tourists with Corey as the guide. He drove us all around taking us to cool sites with some amazing views, great restaurants and met some of his friends. I was really glad I knew someone here. I wouldn’t have seen as much as I did, if I didn’t know anyone.
The weekend came to an end, which means I had to face what was being delayed. Leaving my girlfriend and not knowing if or when I’d see her again. I drove her to the airport and we had lunch together. After, I walked her as far as I could go without going through security. We stood in front of an escalator and gave each other a hug and kiss and said our goodbyes. She turned to get on the escalator.
Sometimes and very rarely, I get these weird feelings. The last time I spent some time with my grandpa was when he was living in a seniors living community. We were having a short conversation when he mentioned that dinner was about to be served in the dinning hall. Yes it was 4:30 in the afternoon, haha! But I walked with him down the hall. At the end of the hall he was going right to eat and I was going to left to go to the parking lot. We both paused and he said “take it easy kid.” After I was a little ways down the hall, I stopped and turned around. I watched as he was slowly riding his electric wheel chair. I felt really bad for him. He seemed so lonely. This feeling came over me like that was the last time I was going to see him alive and the last time we would speak. About a week later, I was right.
So as I watched her sink under the floor riding the escalator down, I had this feeling that we weren’t going to last as a couple and it would be ending soon.