Here we are...July 5, 2006.
After two long days of driving, including about five hours of incessant meow-ing by my female cat, we arrived in Louisville, Colorado on Friday, June 30.
The drive was exhausting and there was still unloading (upstairs, no less) and unpacking to be done. Thankfully, the apartment that welcomed us was freshly painted and spacious. The neighbors were friendly and parking was ample. So far, so good.
After spending the following several days shopping for food, a bed, and other miscellaneous items misplaced or left behind from the move, we reconfirmed my original opinion about the residents of Colorado (at least in this neck of the woods): they really are nice, normal people here. Courteous, polite and friendly, with the exception of a few teenagers displaying the attitude that tends to give teenagers a bad name, the folks in this area are top-notch.
Of course, there was still the Costco test: would the shoppers at Costco try to run me down without the slightest remorse, as did those in Southern California? Would they aggressively shove past me at high speeds, forcing me to grab my son from their path out of concern for his safety? Well, if that's what I was expecting, I was let down - in a fantastically incredible way. We shopped with leisure, politely moving out of the way for others, as they did for us. Children were corrected for climbing on the freezer cases and motioned to make way for others.
We had a pleasant exchange with a couple of shoppers who were laughing about one of their purchases, a high-flax cereal. The wife was buying it for the husband, and we all had a good chuckle about the ability of the cereal to keep it's consumers "regular." The husband laughed with a little bit of a cringe, though.
Yesterday, we went down to the picnic in the park, where we dined on free bratwursts cooked and served by the mayor and city council. My son played on the playground and found a new interest, bocce ball.
When we discovered early on that we didn't have our sunscreen, I set out to find some, amongst the vendors. As I headed out across the park, I was stopped by a girl asking if I would like to join a Colorado wildlife/land preservation group. When I explained that I was on a mission to find sunscreen, she said the other girl who was with her had some and off we went. She gave me her friend's sunscreen and I disappeared with it for about 15 minutes, applying the precious protection to my son's skin and mine and my husband's faces.
When I went back and returned the sunscreen, I offered her a couple of dollars for letting us use it, and she gladly accepted. No feigned refusal, out of a weak attempt at being civil or polite, just a gratified, "sure!" was all that met my offer. And, of course, she told me that she hoped we'd have fun at the park that day.
But, if you're from California (and your name isn't Aunt Stephanie) it is actually very boring here and the people really aren't so nice...you'd be much better off staying there. But, if your name happens to be Aunt Stephanie, you owe yourself a visit out to us (real soon)!