The title of this blog post could suggest that this is my first time in Colorado. Conversely, this is my third time out here in the past three years alone, with five or six other trips dotting my childhood. (There were some VERY harrowing skiing experiences early on in high school that left me fairly sure where I stand on the “professional athlete scale”. The answer is mildly depressing).
But now that I’ve been in Denver for two weeks (which admittedly is different to the People’s Republic of Boulder, where I’ll be living as of next week, so bear with me, or don’t, but I’m allowed to change my mind!!!!), I’ve had a pretty good amount of time to start sussing out my surroundings. The following is a list of my very observant, witty, and often overly generalistic impressions of my new home state.
1. Everyone in Colorado has a dog. Most people have two. (Again, I said I would generalize. If you are averse to hyperbole, I would think you would have stopped reading this AGES ago.)
2. “Casual” takes on a whole new meaning in Colorado. “Casual Fridays” are basically an invitation to wear rock-climbing gear to the office. (I HATE high heels. This works out so well here! I think it’s awesome. People get way more excited about a new pair of Merrells than they do about “chic” clothing that you see dotting the streets of NYC. My beat-up Birkenstocks don’t get a second glance.)
3. People in Colorado are not excited about swimming. (This is an understatement, and it also makes me sad. I already miss the ocean, and I didn’t even go to the beach that much on the East Coast. We have a pool at our new apartment though! And if this anti-swimming attitude has infected our apartment complex, maybe it will just be MY pool. I will usurp all power over its square footage from the evil Home Owners’ Association, and one will have to pass an initial test of enthusiasm to be able to dip so much as a toe in its exclusively chlorinated waters.)
4. My hair looks really good here.* (Although it has been surprisingly humid for Colorado this week, and I am NOT having it. That first week of glossy, wavy, do-nothing-to-your-hair bliss has already spoiled me and I will NOT GO BACK to living in terror of the Daily Frizz.)
*This earns Colorado some very serious bonus points. And is sadly not something I will ever be able to attribute to my gorgeous home state of New Jersey.
5. Do you associate Colorado with mountains? That’s funny, because so do they, and they will never let you forget it, ever. (Mountains are EVERYWHERE here. On the license plates, on the drivers’ licenses, on street signs, store banners, cakes, underwear, socks, babies…you get the idea. They take what could be called excessive pride in their mountains. Sometimes I want to shout “YES, I SEE THEM!” and then run, terrified, from whatever location I’m currently in. But that would be certain death. So really, it’s just a sick fantasy.)
6. People here are really into “organic” and “all-natural” and “homemade” stuff. The effects of this can be witnessed when shopping for everything from furniture, to cleaning supplies, to beer. (That’s not a criticism, it’s just an observation. However, yesterday I did have to physically remove myself from a “natural market” where we were shopping and go next door to Rite-Aid for a few minutes, just to breathe in the clean, stinging smell of mass-produced chemicals. There’s no place like home. Plus, the other place sold homeopathic medicine when I was in dire need of Advil, and nothin’ but the real stuff was going to cut it. Also, I just like hanging out in the shampoo aisle, OKAY?)
So that’s it for my initial list of impressions. I’ll be sure to post an addendum or ten occasionally as I delve deeper into solving all of Colorado’s mysteries. Come along with me, won’t you? (Shoutout to Mr. Rogers. RIP.)