Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Vacation Day 1

Our vacation started last Saturday with an early morning trip to the airport and a direct Southwest flight to Denver. I was a teeny bit obsessed with the idea of seeing mountains, so Andy graciously let me sit by the window after I elbowed and shoved past him to be first into the row.

Muscling my way to the window seat was worth it, though. I saw my first glimpse of mountains from the runway.

I knew Colorado and I would be a good match when I heard the airport tram playing fun, cowboy-up music before pulling into each terminal. Yes, I danced. I was still coming down from my mountain-viewing high.

Things only got better from there. We got to the rental car counter and after the agent tried unsuccessfully into selling us an upgrade from our compact car rental rate, we walked out to the lot to find this beauty sitting in our allotted space.

Andy traded Michael Scott jokes with his brother while I marveled at the odometer which plainly stated "2". Brand freakin' new! The vacation gods were smiling on us.

I really liked that the Denver area, Boulder especially, seemed to be very green (recycle green, not kermit green... though there was plenty of green all around). We saw a smart car and a hybrid taxi on the highway along with many compact cars and smaller, sport SUVs.

We got to Boulder pretty quickly and since we couldn't check into the hotel yet. We grabbed some free parking and walked around the incredible farmer's market downtown. After buying some incredibly delicious mole and spicy pork tamales from a local vendor, we went to find some shade and listen to some kids from the Kutandara Center bang on big ol' xylophone things to make fun music from Zimbabwe.

After feeling sufficiently untalented after watching these guys, we decided to head to the Boulder Dushanbe Teahouse so I could check that off my list of "must do's".

There were incredibly fragrant rose bushes lining the walkway to the entrance and seating outside by the river. The inside still felt like you were dining outdoors with the abundance of greenery, skylights and open doors but with the added benefit of beautiful decor.

The teahouse was handcarved and built in Tajikistan, then brought over, piece by piece and assembled in Boulder.

We ordered a round of tea and the homemade gingerbread cake that was topped with whipped cream and drizzled with fresh honey.

Yeah, my mouth is watering now, too. Sorry 'bout that.

With your tea, they bring little hourglass timers to let you know how long you should steep for optimal taste.

Yeah, I had two rounds of tea, so what?

Nothing compared to what came next though.

I'm still dreaming about this lemon scone with the tart lemon curd and sinfully rich Devonshire cream.

My awesome friend, JennKenn used to try and extoll the virtues of scones and cream to me, and now I must admit that she is supremely correct on all things delicious.

We tried to go back the next day to get scones with Jenn and Chad, but unfairly, they had sold out. We failed.

Speaking of Jenn and Chad, they finaly arrived after some flight delays, and we quickly got on with the celebrating of their engagement at Boulder's West End Tavern.

You can't see "Sparkles" in that photo, but you definitely can in this one.

Check out that bling!

Umm... Perhaps we celebrated a bit too much?

We enjoyed quite a few good local brews and WAY too many PBRs at the Attic before attempting some serious fooseball and touchscreen gaming. Sometime later, we all stumbled back to the good ol' Boulder Quality Inn & Suites. (With complimentary slippers!)

What incredible adventures awaited us the next day? I'll give you a hint. It involved four hungover people and incredibly twisty, windy mountain roads.


Keith said...

Nice work on the post, the multitude of pictures for illustration is much appreciated. I have also been to that teahouse it is incredible, and right down the street form my old agency TDA.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you have finally recognized my tastebuds' genius. Just the picture of scones and clotted cream made me drool.


Jenn said...

I love it, Kristin--It makes me feel like I'm reliving our vacation! The pic of "Sparkles" is SWEET. Can't wait for the rest of the commentary on our vacation.