Rocky Mountain Roadtrip

Crazy drive from Kansas to Colorado.

Crazy weather.

We’re here now.

We had Thai food.

And now I’m sitting by a fire with my feet up on a fancy table.

And so thankful for my beautiful parents who took the time out of their weekend to drive me all the way to Colorado. And then to drive back after.

I love you guys, and I’ll always come home as long as you want me there. ; )

Thanks for the winter vacation- it was a whirlwind, but it was worth it. I wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere else in the world.

And I learned a lot more about myself. I realized how much I do miss all of you. And I had time to get my shit together and realize what was really important, and what I really want to take out of this year.

My birthday.
My lovely parents drop me off at Monica’s house at 8 am, and then Monica takes me on a tour of her town, and then we drive up into the mountains and look down on the town.
We have ginger tea at the Alley Cat, and then head to City Burrito for lunch. The home of the famous potato burrito. I loved it all.
Back at her house, drink Bengal Spice tea and read Wicked. Go for a walk in the snow and then eat vegetarian lasagna with her parents.
Then we hang out in her room for the rest of the night packing and laughing about life.


Purple mountain morning in Fort Collins.
Monica’s dad makes us eggs for breakfast, here cats jumping at the kitchen bar to join us. And then we go to pick up Ray. Ray’s mom invites us in for scrambled eggs round two, and we accept, her dogs jumping up and down on us as we stuff our faces.
On the road around 8, start up to Wyoming.
The drive to Laramie, Wyoming was hellish. Her car was literally being blown back and forth on the road, in blizzard like blowing snow drifts. Couldn’t see ten feet in front of us at points. And it was neverending- just like the drive from Kansas to Colorado. Two and a half hours later we make it to the home of WU, Laramie. We ask at a gas station for directions to a coffee shop, and get there and meet the local college students working there. Monica and I are both wearing flannel, and Ray is wearing a top hat. We look like we don’t give a fuck. And we love it.
Wyoming houses/infrastructure: box houses. Bright colors, with brighter borders. Simple, rectangular or square.
We pass “Hill Hall” on campus and crack up. Coloradoans really like to make fun of anything in Wyoming. Just like Kansans do to Missourians.
“THANK YOU FOR YOUR SERVICE!” Monica screams at every national service, maintenance and authority figure we pass.
Either say something, or forget it.
Getting back on the interstate- realize immediately that it has just closed. And will most likely be closed the rest of the day. So we sit in the parking lot and debate about what to do- and then decide to head back into the blizzard, as the roads will most likely be closed up here for the rest of the day. The wind is not letting up.
So we add four lost hours onto our trip, and then our new route is four hours longer as well. A sixteen hour roadtrip to a twenty four hour one.
Drive back and listen to the Rent soundtrack, and admire the scenery again that we had passed a mere few hours earlier.
“One thing I can tell you is you’ve got to be FREE/Come together, right now, over me.”
Ray is curled up in the back seat with her hood up and eating entire bags of Cheetos when we reach Fort Collins again. Around 12pm. Four hours later and we’re back where we started.
We stop at Qudoba and get burritos, and then I got in the drivers seat, and we were on to Denver.

On the drive from Colorado to California, Monica and I talked about anything and everything under the sun for three, four, five straight hours while I drove through the Rocky Mountains. I thought it odd that I was with two native Coloradans, but I was the one driving at this point. It was absolutely breathtakingly beautiful. Never ending wonder and realization of one’s own insignificance, as well as great significance in this big, wild world.

I was nervous when I stopped to think about my driving, but then would get caught up in telling and listening to stories, and the driving just came automatically. Monica was so supportive, and didn’t push me to go faster. She wanted me to learn to feel comfortable at my own pace, and to learn to trust myself. She trusted me.

5:21pm Colorado time: Cotton Candy sunset deep in the middle of the Rocky Mountains- best way to travel is always west- the neverending beauty of the prolonged sunsets and sunrises. Stopped at Glenwood Medows Hot Springs for a Starbucks run, and to try on hats at Target. Mountain towering not a half mile away from the Target.

5:28 pm Tangerine sunset and leaving mountains after whole day of them.

5:56 pm Just kidding. Haven’t left the mountains yet. But there is a lava red sunset now. Clouds billowing up from the volcanic horizon. X

6:30 pm Sugar cookie moon, waiting to be eaten. Surrounded by the jet black coffee night sky to wash it down with.

Ray drove for an hour- and then I drove the next four/five hours to Salt Lake City. Beautiful Utah mountains- we had a full moon and were able to see all. The eerie rock mountains we passed through- and the toxic extraction mines built right atop them.

Ray’s mom was worried about us driving all night, so she bought us a hotel in Salt Lake City, and when we got there we jumped in bed and passed out.


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