Colorado: Day Four

All right, I’m now that person who has to check work e-mail despite being on vacation. Previously, I felt no guilt about never opening my inbox until the day I returned to work, but for some reason, I feel like there’s a SLIGHT potential that someone a level above me is going to e-mail me and I’ll regret not knowing what’s going on. I hate that feeling! Even though I only spent like ten minutes of my life checking my inbox, I feel some slight relief that nothing huge happened but I also HATE that I felt compelled to check in the first place. I do NOT have an important enough job for this!

Chautauqua Park

Anyway, today was going to be my “local Boulder” hikes day – I had planned for a half day in Chautauqua Park (mainly Enchanted Mesa then driving up to Realization Point to try the Tenderfoot Trail), then potentially a walk at El Dorado Canyon State Park. WE didn’t end up completing any of these. It pretty much drizzled/light rained all day long. We had breakfast and headed out to Chautauqua Park, donned in rain gear. It wasn’t raining too bad, and I’m glad we hiked when we did because the rain only got heavier in the afternoon. But Chautauqua Trail ended up being more inclined than my dad likes, and was much muddier than my mom likes, so they were both pleased when I said we could do a very short route and head out earlier.

We still ended up walking for over an hour, though it was only about 1.2-2.0 miles (I truly don’t understand how to read miles on the trail map). My mom and I wanted to go into the Boulder Central Library, and I’m sure my dad was just happy to not have to walk anymore. So we headed to the library! Delightfully, they have 90 minutes free parking in downtown Boulder. You enter your license plate into a machine, which seems very advanced.

The library IS really nice, particularly the children section which is HUGE, and the cafe, which has beautiful ceiling to floor window walls overlooking Boulder Creek Path. I did not get any pictures though because it felt really weird to take photos of the library. Here’s some photos from IG though…

 

 

 

 

:*( there are not exactly shots that are what I would have liked… but there was a ton of people sitting in the cafe and it would have been truly weird to try to take a picture.

I was pretty hungry by the time we left the library around 1pm, but my parents claimed they weren’t, and my mom was adamant that we finish leftover pizza from our first night. She told me I could buy WHATEVER I wanted for lunch, which gave me the freedom to go with Terra Thai (if I had to factor in my parents’ preferences, I probably wouldn’t have chosen an Asian place). We went for takeout and I got pad see ew and what was essentially like braised beef with rice, but I can’t remember what it’s called right now. Then we drove the 20min back to our hotel to eat everything in the dining room. Which would make it the SECOND time that trip that we ate in the hotel dining area! It’s something I never think of doing but it was perfect because I hate having the hotel room smell like food, and there was hot water so we could all drink tea, and there wasn’t anyone else using it anyway.

I’m glad I had gotten two entrees, because it turns out everyone was pretty hungry and we ended up with the perfect amount of food, including our leftover pizza. Then it was about 3pm so I decided we’d head to Celestial Seasonings for a free tour, since I couldn’t think of anything else to do since it was still raining. Somehow this makes it the SECOND time in my life that I’ve done this tour! haha It was still quite a sizeable tour group though, and it was a good 45 minutes tour + 30 minutes spent in the gift shop, and it added some variety to my travel itinerary.

From here, my dad decided he’d use the hotel’s hot tub early, at around 5pm, while my mom and I would go for another walk and then get take out for dinner. I was debating between Tenderfoot Trail and a flat walk around Wonderland Lake. It wasn’t raining, but it was cloudy, so Tenderfoot Trail was out because I’d read it has great views, which would have been obscured. I definitely want to go another time! Plus my mom voted for a flat walk, because she really does not like inclined walks when it’s just rained. Wonderland Lake ended up being a great choice – I think it might have been 1.8mi roundtrip, but we turned it into an hour long walk because my mom kept wanting pictures. It was extremely tranquil walking around there, it seemed like the type of place people go after work to walk dogs.

Then I drove to Sweet Cow for ice cream, because I had loved the honey mint SOOO much from the night before, and it was our last chance for ice cream! The server there recognized us from the night before! (because we’re Asian, I’m sure) and she was like “welcome back!!!” (so cute!) and I told her “we had to come back because we’re from CA and we’re leaving tomorrow!” and she was like “no way! your ice cream is on me then!” which made my mom shriek with delight and ask for a picture with her (Cassie was her name). This time we got honey mint and espresso bean which was also extremely delicious.

Honestly one of the best ice cream I’ve had

Then I drove my mom and myself to Good Time Burgers, also a repeat destination, because we all loved it. Sadly they messed up our order – we were supposed to get one burger and one chicken sandwich, but ended up with two burgers. I also overdid it with the sides – wild fries, green chile mac n cheese, and onion rings – but I wouldn’t know which side to remove, and we ate the leftovers the following day anyway! We also brought all this back to the hotel to eat, for our THIRD meal in the dining room. Once again, everyone was DELIGHTED! I thought the entire vacation was paced well – first day being arrival and leisurely walk around Pearl St, second day being hike-heavy, third day being rained in and very relaxed, and fourth day with a full exploration of the Denver Botanic Garden before heading to the airport.

I ended up being really lazy after dinner and just sat in the room while my parents were back in the hot tub/gym. I eventually got up for a late night gym session at 11pm, which is truly one of my favorite things to do ever. I wish I could get back in this habit – I’m used to going to the gym very late back in high school, college, and then the early days of living in Santa Clara when I’d go to Planet Granite after working late. I feel like that time is perfect for clearing my mind so it’s almost meditative to be on the gym equipment, plus I like showering right after the gym and right before bed. I ended up sleeping at 1am that night which made me tired enough the next day to sleep through much of my flights! Just the way I like it~

Wonderland Lake
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