When Blake told me before Christmas he was planning to move to a different Ft. Collins location, my MOM antennae went up and started flashing like Rudolph’s nose.
I don’t really need an excuse to visit my boys, but it never hurts to have an objective in mind when I invite myself over – especially to Colorado! Consequently, Blake’s Christmas gift was a coupon stating, “This entitles you to one Mom visit, with some room decorating thrown in for fun.” I think he smiled when he opened it – oh heck, of course he did!
Blake is sharing a home in the Old Town section of Ft. Collins, very close to the center of town. So close in fact that walking downtown is simple, except when it’s -3, which it was on Saturday morning. (Blake still walked to the coffeeshop. I curled up next to the wood stove with a steaming mug of Starbucks Instant Caramel and prayed he wouldn’t freeze to the sidewalk).
Overall, it was a cozy house in a great area of Ft. Collins, and I’m so happy he is now where he originally wanted to find a place.
It snowed off and on all day Friday, my first full day there, but I was on a mission, so we sloshed around in the snow and cold all day (highs in the 20’s). Blake had more patience than any Mom should expect from a son (or woman should expect from a man), but after about seven hours and visiting at least six stores (and finally returning to the first one), he was ready to call it quits for the year in the shopping category. He did seem very pleased with the results though!
Blake wanted to take me to Estes Park, and having spent the entire day shopping on Friday, that only left us Saturday. When we left the house, Blake’s car thermometer read -3, and where were we headed? Into the mountains!
The Stanley Hotel is a 140-room hotel in Estes Park. It opened in 1909, catering to the rich and famous including RMS Titanic survivor Margaret Brown, John Philip Sousa, Theodore Roosevelt and a variety of Hollywood personalities . . . including horror novelist Stephan King.
Have you figured out where I’m going with this?
King’s stay at The Stanley inspired him to write The Shining, and parts of the mini-series version of The Shining were filmed there, although Stanley Kubrick’s cinematic version was filmed at the Timberline Lodge in Oregon and at Elstree Studios in England. The Stanley shows the uncut R-rated version of Kubrick’s The Shining on a continuous loop on Channel 42 on guest room televisions.
Nope – don’t want to stay here – even in the summer.
Estes Park is a sweet little Western town and is the headquarters for Rocky Mountain National Park. Trail Ridge Road, the highest continuous highway in the U.S., runs from Estes Park westward through Rocky Mountain National Park over the continental divide.
It was walking down these streets I first noticed that it was a little harder to breathe. I guess at over 7500 feet, that is understandable.
Can’t say that we spent a lot of time shopping in Estes Park (the last thing on Blake’s mind). We looked at books, ate, and tracked down some cookies for dessert – then we started further up into the Rockies.
It was a wonderful trip, and after two winter visits, I think I’d love to see Ft. Collins – and Colorado – during the summer. But hey – I’ll go anytime I’m invited, Blake. Hint, hint, hint.