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Published: April 9th 2009
045 - USA - Colorado
03/20/09 - 03/23/09
Brother Levi in Colorado Springs
Coming back to the States after 13 months of global travel injected some serious patriotism back in us (especially Hannah!). Waiting for our luggage at LAX I saw an older Hispanic lady struggling with her jumbo-bags. Speaking in Spanish, I offered her a hand... then I thought, wait a minute, I bet she speaks English! In fact, everyone here speaks English! I can read the road signs, order food from a menu without being lost with 40% of the choices, and bus numbers aren't in Arabic! Woo-hoo, it's good to be back!
It's not just the language, we have things pretty good here. Things have set prices, the roads are the easiest to drive in the world, and we've got less corruption than any country Hannah and I visited during our travels. Yeah, stuff costs more, health insurance is a joke, and there's as many laws as grains of sand on the beach. But hey, that's the price of paradise, my friend!!
Alright, enough ranting about Americana, we packed up the Suburban with everything including the kitchen sink (after living out of a
carry-on-size backpack for the last year it was nice to have more room), and set off towards Colorado Springs, home to Hannah's brother Levi, his newly pregnant super-host wife, Mandy, and cousin Darcy.
Colorado Springs has a cool vibe: it's a decent size city with inhabitants that love the outdoors, the mountains, ski resorts, etc. We visited the Garden of the Gods, a state reserve with some amazing rock structures. Hannah's cousin Darcy and friend Mary met us at Levi's house that night for a good ol' American BBQ.
The following day, Levi and his friend Chris suggested we do an incline hike laiden with railroad beams and check out a great view of the city from the top. Sure, I'd be down for a little hiking. Hmmm... bad idea! Imagine walking up the stairwell of the Empire State Building while taking the steps in groups of three. Yup, that's what I'm talking about, it was steep! Interestingly, I didn't see too many locals struggling (did that 12 year old girl with flip-flops really just pass me?) and Levi and Chris could have read all of Tolstoy's epics while waiting for me to 'summit'. But I made it,
huffing, puffing, and almost vomiting, I made it to the top! See, I can be a Colorado Springs local... really, I can!!
Levi and Mandy were incredible hosts, feeding us constantly and making us feel right at home. Hannah cooked a great Indonesian dish (gado-gado) of spinach and peanut sauce on our last night and everyone humored us and ate with their fingers in true 'Do It Like the Locals' fashion! If you missed the recipe the first time around, click here.
Good times in Colorado but there are many states we want to visit. Cue Paul Simon music: 'I'm going to Graceland, Graceland, Memphis Tennessee!'
Next stop, Memphis, home of rock and roll, good Southern BBQ, and our lovely friend Victoria!!
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