Friday, July 11, 2008

Week Two in Boulder

So, what have we been doing in Boulder and how is it different from what we'd be doing in Massachusetts. Dan is now working from the second bedroom, so sometimes we run in the morning together and often we hike or climb in the evening. While Dan is working I have been unpacking the last of the boxes, doing errands, and taking advantage of all that Boulder has to offer. For instance, Monday morning I biked around town opening a bank account and taking paperwork to the property management company. I went for a swim at the YMCA just down the street and also then biked to do some groceries. Biking is incredibly accessible around here. There are multi-use paths that keep you out of traffic's way completely, on-road bike lanes and wide sidewalks where none of these options exist. Monday night we hiked in northern Boulder and that's where we saw the rattle snake.

Tuesday evening I went to ballet class. There is a professional company here, the Boulder Ballet, and they have a very busy ballet school. In my beginner class there were 11 of us (all adults, too!). While I was trying to keep up with the rest of the class, Dan went to Boulder Community Bicycles a non-profit that recycles old bikes, sells parts, and allows volunteers to build their own bikes. After ten hours of volunteer time Dan can start to build his own bike. They have lots of people there to help and tons of tools and bike parts. I rode my bike to ballet class that night and it was so beautiful out I decided to do a little riding in the bike paths in our neighborhood. On the way back to the townhouse, I saw a fox crossing the road. It was very cool!

Wednesday morning I ran and then when to a yoga class. As you might imagine, yoga is very big here in Boulder. There are countless yoga studios and classes pretty much any time day or night, inside or outside. Wednesday evening we decided to explore Mount Sanitas as we had heard there was some good rock for bouldering on the ridge of the mountain. We drove 2.5 miles to the edge of town, parked the car, and started hiking up on the Mount Sanitas trail. After 5-10 minutes of hiking we ran into some climbers and great boulders with chalk marks all over them (always good signs!). We bouldered for a while (poorly, I might add) on some sand stone that had lots of texture and was amazingly sharp. We explored a number of areas until our fingers were too sore to keep going. Then we hiked further up the trail as we were trying to get to the summit and loop back around. The ridge seemed to keep going and going and the sun kept getting lower and lower, so we opted to turn around. The views, though, were just incredible. On one side we could see the faint outlines of the rockies with the sun setting behind them. On the other, we could see all of Boulder sprawled before us. The trail book said that the hike gained 1200 feet in elevation, so with nothing else blocking our view, it was like we were flying above town.

On Thursdays there is usually a presentation at the local mountaineering store about someone's great adventures around the world. We were planning to go, but unfortunately never made it there. At about 4:00 in the afternoon we both walked over to community cycles to volunteer (I want to build my own road bike so I can be fast! Right now I have a hybrid which is great for around town and on the trails, but I want to be able to ride the whole canyon up to Nederland--18 miles, 3,000ft elevation gain. I figure I really need a light weight bike to do so. Plus, I think it will be really cool to build my own bike!). At first we were given bookkeeping tasks to do but then the owner, Gary, gave us an old mountain bike that was donated and said that the brakes needed adjustment. Two hours later Dan and I had taken every brake pad apart, filed most of them, adjust the tension on all of them, and tightened the brake line. At that point we tested the bike, learned the brakes actually worked, and found that they were squeaking like mad. I went home because I was starving (it was 7:30/7:40 at this point) and started dinner. Dan stayed another half an hour and fixed the pads again.

So today, I have a big bike ride planned. A friend of mine from Lincoln is out here this week taking a class and he is a big biker. So we're going to do 25-35 miles this afternoon. Then he's coming over for dinner (our first guest!). I have some other errands and house stuff to do during the day while Dan's working. I think we're going to get licenses and stuff today as well. The insurance cards finally came in, so I think we have what we need.

Tomorrow Matt Baranowski (drummer from Angstrom) is driving up from Colorado Springs and we're going rock climbing with him. This is his first time, so we're hoping to get him hooked!

Well, I apologize for all the rambling on, but this is what we've been doing. I'll take some pictures of the apartment today and post them so you can all see where we're living. Keep those comments coming!

Oh, I nearly forgot....I need to tell the tale of the aggressive bird. The what?! you may ask. Yes, the aggressive bird. So, last week I'm going on my morning run. Two blocks south of here is the Goose Creek Trail, a multi-use path that runs east/west along a small creek. So I went west for a ways, and the trail ended, so I turned around and went the other way figuring I'd go for a couple of miles and turn around again. I'm running long, taking in the scenery and I feel something on my head--something sharp. It's a freakin' bird dive bombing me. I'm trying to shoo the thing away (it was bigger than a finch, but not as big as a robin) but I'm worried it's going to claw me or bite me or something. Needless to say, it startled me, but I continued to run on. I eventually turned around, and this time, since I'm running west the run isn't blaring into my eyes. I see a little cardboard sign near the bird's tree that says "Caution, Aggressive Bird." I see the bird attaching the person in front of me, just as it had gotten me earlier. I tried to run off the path away from the tree, but the bird still dive bombed me. I couldn't believe it. This bird was spending it's day just attacking anyone who got within 15 feet of his tree. When I told Dan, he wanted to go down there and set up lawn chairs. That hasn't happened yet, but needless to say I haven't run on that segment of the path again!

1 comment:

Donna said...

You guys are incredible - I'll have to get in shape and start some serious training so I can come visit you sometime. :) Love the Aggressive Bird story.
Glad things are going well.