Saturday Sunday, August 20-21, 2022
My Baby Bro is Getting Old – and so am I.
At some level in our minds, we were planning the departure from Denver. We took advantage of the homeowners Brad and Evan’s invitation to use their laundry facilities to grasp a glimpse into their six-bedroom home. The four dogs greeted me each time I entered the residence, sometimes accompanying me downstairs, through the guest suite, to the laundry room.
We stayed home most of the day. Discouraged by the rooftop experience of the previous evening, I located an Irish pub for supper. Finley’s Pub was in the Washington Park neighborhood, less upscale than downtown and catering to our kind of people. Although Denver is a major city, we found it easy to traverse despite occasional traffic congestion.
The interior of Finley’s looked like an Irish pub, with no lack of dark wood and the accouterments of a classy dive bar. We arrived at the baby boomer’s supper hour, finding a few drinkers at the bar and most tables empty. The dining room would fill with couples and young families before we left.
We were waited on by not one, but two men eager to serve. I indulged in not one, but two Jamesons, with rocks transferred from my water glass, fearing the charge for a cocktail cube. Out of character, I ordered cod fish and chips which were amazingly delicious thanks to the light breading on the fish. Mike affirmed the high quality of his sandwich. We are pub people, not rooftop people.
August 21, 1961, was a watershed day for my family when Baby Bro was born. Almost 11, I was thrilled. Big Bro was embarrassed, his parents’ sexuality displayed for all to see. Little Sis probably figured they produced a toy for her enjoyment. I measure my age by Baby Bro’s. If he is in his 60’s, that means I am really in my 70s. Ugh!!! A quick FaceTime to wish him the best started my Sunday on a high.
Having conquered the technology of modern TV, I was happy to tune into CBS Sunday Morning, lounging on the sectional in my jammies and sipping coffee. Brad knocked on our door to deliver a jar of honey that he had recently harvested from his beehives. A sample taste carried the flavor of Colorado blossoms.
Packing under control, we drove into Denver to the River North Art District, dubbed RiNo, touted as the home of mural art displayed on buildings. The tourist information did not reference the graffiti covering an equal amount of space. Nor was there a reference to what appears gentrification with large, attractive apartment buildings filling the neighborhood. Although not a sociologist, I diagnosed gentrification based on the tents and piles of goods lining the streets. These homeless were not one-nighters. A pop-up tent trailer and a truck bed served as abodes their occupants mingling together on the sidewalk. My heart broke for these residents as well as the city dealing with overpopulation and lack of affordable housing and the mental health issues that go along with the challenges.
Our destination for Sunday afternoon was the Breckenridge Brewery in Littleton, just outside Denver. Looking forward to living music in the large yard, we found a seat at a picnic table in the shade. The band performed country and bluegrass. Not my first choice of genre, but their quality performance was perfect for a Sunday afternoon.
There was once a Guy who warned of taco trucks on every corner. We were excited at the prospect, and Colorado seems to have moved ahead on the proposition. Most breweries we visited were served by a food truck rather than a kitchen. At Breckinridge, the food offered outdoors was via a sole food truck featuring Polynesian dishes with SPAM. No, thank you. We opted to move indoors, seated on the screened-in porch, within range of the music but out of the sun. Service was slow, but we weren’t in a hurry. My serving of meatloaf with bacon accompanied by grilled Brussels sprouts and mashed potatoes was rich enough for at least two meals. Mike finished his sandwich as we enjoyed our beers, watching families playing cornhole, listening to music, and chatting. The sights distracted me from thoughts of P-DiL, scheduled to be induced to give birth the next day.
Sixth Avenue in the Hale neighborhood of Denver was a broad boulevard divided by a grassy median where people walked, biked, and ran their dogs. The large, classic homes set back on attractive lawns shouted “privilege.” A traffic light leading from the grassy parkway to the median between corners on this moderately busy street was timed to turn red whenever Mike approached, setting off his diatribe against city engineers. The position of the light appeared arbitrary. I presumed the mayor lived in the house behind the light. We passed through the non-intersection for the last time, certain to encounter more engineering faux pas on our long drive ahead.