Day 1: Colorado: Day 1
My mom and I left last Friday to go to Colorado for the weekend and help at a charity event that my sister and her boyfriend organized and ran. The charity was the EOD Wounded Warrior Foundation (EOD stands for explosive ordnance disposal – which is what my brother does in Afghanistan.)
We had to leave our house very early (4 am) and after eating breakfast at a McDonald’s we got to the airport. We had no problems: checking-in, going through security, waiting for our flight or boarding. The flight was completely full (we have taken this non-stop flight many times in the past few years and it is always full – yet Southwest Airlines is getting rid of it on November 3rd.) A large – ie fat - woman sat next to me on the plane and kept coming into my space. She also smelt really bad. I really wish Southwest would enforce their policy of making fat passengers buy a second seat so they don’t make it uncomfortable for everyone else. I tried to sleep the majority of the flight so I didn’t have to deal with the woman.
We landed in Denver with no problems and then saw that it was completely covered in dense fog. We had to sit on the tarmac for about 20 minutes because there was a plane at our gate that had to wait because of the fog. When we did get to the gate we managed to get off pretty quickly. You then have to take the train to the main terminal (which isn’t handicapped accessible as the doors don’t line-up with the train. We got to the main terminal and met-up with my sister-in-law. Our bags came off pretty quickly and the only issue was trying to find the car in the parking lot (and dealing with some pretty dumb people who wouldn’t get out of the way.)
We drove to Colorado Springs. It was still very cold and foggy until we got to the Springs and then it was like the heavens opened-up. There was sunshine!
We had a late lunch at the Edelweiss German Restaurant - a place we have eaten at before and like. Then we went to my sister-in-law’s house and hung-out with my niece and nephew when they got home from school. My sister-in-law had to go to work so we took the kids to our hotel and checked-in. We stayed at the same Embassy Suites we did last June, but this time it seemed nothing worked. There was only one elevator working and it took forever to come, the heater in the room didn’t work and it was pretty cold and the staff weren’t polite or professional (more on that later.)
We waited for my sister and her boyfriend to get off work so we could have a late dinner. We had reservations at My Big Greek Restaurant. We have never eaten there before, but most of the food was good and plentiful (the baklava for dessert wasn’t that good though.) After dinner we dropped the kids off at home and went to our hotel.
Colorado: Day 2
We had a rough night and didn’t get much sleep (that along with the 2 hour time difference) made us extremely tired. We had breakfast with my sister-in-law and the kids at IHOP (which has become a tradition for us whenever we are in Colorado.) Afterwards we went to the Event Center to help my sister with her event. Throughout the day we dealt with the raffle (well it was called something else since CO has weird raffle/gambling rules) and a silent action. There were many different kinds of martial arts groups doing demonstrations, vendors from different businesses, a hypnotist and several other things going on. It was a pretty fun day. The Event Center had their own food place (Hawaiian BBQ) but it didn’t look good and the guy was pretty rude so we had lunch at a place called Village Inn – which is all over Colorado Springs.
I was really impressed with how hard my sister and her boyfriend worked to set this event up. There was a lot of different things that people could do and win. By the end of the day everyone was tired, but in a good mood since we knew it was for a great cause. I just wish more people came to the event – but you can’t help that.
After cleaning everything up we had dinner at the Mason Jar. We had eaten there last June and it was good again this time. We dropped the kids off at their house (their mom was working again) and then went to my sister’s house to download pictures we had taken of the event. When that was done we went to our hotel.
We had an issue with the guy at the Front Desk (it took 2 calls, 45 minutes and then me walking downstairs to get what the maid had not left in our room when she cleaned it.) I made sure to get his name and did officially complain the next day at check-out.
Colorado: Day 3
We got up and were ready to go home. Unfortunately, our flight wasn’t until that night. We had lunch at On the Border Mexican Restaurant (with my sister-in-law and the kids) and then went back to their house where my sister-s boyfriend picked us up and drove us to the Denver Airport. I know I have said this before, but I don’t care for the Denver Airport – it looks ugly and doesn’t have much inside.
We had no problems checking-in or going through security, but did have some issues trying to get into the train to our Gate (there were lots of people also wanting to get on and yet just stood there watching us rather than offering to help.) I made sure we took a good amount of space inside the train so those “helpful” people had to fight amongst themselves to find a spot.
At the gate we learned that our flight was delayed 20 minutes because Southwest was waiting for a connecting flight. I have never had an airline wait a plane for me when my connecting flight was delayed and I have been around the country and the world. This flight was overbooked (as was 5 other Southwest flights.) We boarded with no problems and the woman who sat next to me this time was skinny and polite. I read a book the whole time. We landed and deplaned quickly – usually we have to wait for them to bring the chair up. We met my dad, got our bags, had an ok dinner at a local diner (one of only 2 places open 24 hours – although starting tomorrow they close at midnight) and then headed home. We had some fog on the drive back, but it wasn’t too bad.
We got home around 2 am and then got up at 8 am to get my dogs from the kennel. I have been spending the rest of the day getting things back to normal.
All-in-all it was a good trip with very few issues. It was nice that we were able to help my sister and the charity. I still don’t like Colorado Springs as a whole. It was cold there yet the leaves hadn’t started changing. Back home here it was sunny and warm.