Wednesday, October 11, 2023

Well It's Alright, Even if the Sun Don't Shine

I boarded a plane to visit my sister in Colorado.  She lives in a small town below Pueblo so getting to her is becoming harder due to cutbacks and closures.  My bag, for example had to be picked up and then rechecked at the Dallas airport, which took an hour and was very confusing to go out of the airport and then back in.  I was a bag of nerves.  New York and Denver are two entirely different planets.  You think people are all the same everywhere, but no, not really.  The shift to mainly white people is noticeable.  There is a vibe switch.  It's undeniable.  I wouldn't say bad or good, just definitely different.
Denver Airport

And when it was finally time to board, we went outside and walked and walked until we came upon this tiny plane (the one on the far left). It felt like a joke.  One of the passengers barely fit.

It was so small that only 8 people including the crew fit inside. A puddle jumper they call them.  Exciting and frightening at the same time. 

My sis was a sight for sore eyes.  She picked me up and we immediately headed to fetch Asian take out.  As soon as I get in that truck my heart rate steadies and I relax.  But we're all a little more uneasy these days, we've been through something.  Life has changed some for each of us. 
This combo platter was incredibly tasty and the broccoli was steamed to perfection.  The shrimp was crispy and juicy.  I devoured it and became sleepy early, not feeling the happy-go-lucky guest I'd hope to be. 
Like this fire in the nearby mountain, this trip had some bad signs.  I awoke the next morning with a gigantic, pounding migraine.  I vomited several times until all I could do was wretch.  It was so painful.  My sis blacked out the room and gave me a joint, which helped so much with the nausea and I slept most of the morning.  We have been so lucky to get magical moments in these yearly trips just by doing simple outings.   We have little time, so being out of commision the next day postponed our walks and lake time, any fun outside of me just laying still in a dark room.   I knew she didn't care, but I felt I let her down.

A fire broke out across the mountain from the lake and the smoke eventually cut our walk short the next day 

I always appreciate just how cute my sister is when she's in her element

I often fail when faced with the slightest bit of pressure to perform cooking for others.  It was my sister's birthday morning and I made her a Denver omelet but the peppers were not quite soft enough.  Rookie mistake.  The toaster was unplugged, so nothing was piping hot, as breakfast should be.

We had a huge scare when we were on a more desolate trail and I could not get the porta potty door back open. It was jammed and I started to panic, locked inside.  Sis was just about to walk to get help when I busted out.   I began to feel that darker forces were at work.

Her town is small and calm, very peaceful. 

They offer surprisingly delicious take out, like this beef brisket from High Octane BBQ.  
Mornings and sunsets were pink and blue

big sis
She calls this her Marigold Bird Cafe
Her bird seed brings all the deer to the yard
Mediterranean Pizza from Victorio's. 

Sister saved some of her homemade tamales, so these were a very special treat.  So much so that it was hard not to request them every night. I did request them again and again

She grows everything in her garden and some of the plants finish their season indoors.

Creamy oatmeal, sausage and toast is a favorite out there because normally it can get quite chilly in October, although this time it stayed very mild.

Her birthday dinner was spent at Victorio's Italian Restaurant (unpictured) with us all dolled up, no customers except for several drunken old men at the bar.  One came over and asked to buy us a beer and he made me so sad because he was overweight, too drunk and unhealthy looking.  I felt terrible, trying not to show my disgust.  I'm not usually such a prude.  It was the end of the night and the waitress clearly had her hands full with the men so we didn't bother with ordering dessert.  We ate quickly and went straight home.  
Before I knew it, my time was up and I was seated back in the tiny plane, flying back home.  There was a hectic day before trying to find an Uber that would travel to another town when sis's truck tires appeared too low to travel.  Luckily she got her neighbor to help out.  But it was hard to ignore that this trip was void of some of the magic of previous ones.  I felt like I had failed to be a fun guest.  But if anyone can, sisters can understand that we're not always at our best and to be there when that is so. 


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