Breckenridge, Colorado. I tried to like it here, but the magic was missing. It is pretty, the town is quaint, but somehow I felt like I stumbled onto the location for “Girls Gone Wild” or some place for a Spring Break binge. Now some of you may be taking notes going, “I want to go there!” But it is not my kind of atmosphere and when a 40-year-old man hit on me and said he wanted to “bang” me, I was not impressed. Does this approach appeal to other women? He was a hot, rich guy, GQ with a backpack, but his raunchy language and his bragging and accusing me of having something wrong with me because I wouldn’t go to his hotel room was not attractive.
There are so many times that Shakespeare enters my real world. I felt like Marina in Pericles who was captured by pirates and then sold as a virgin to a brothel. She was so pure of heart that she changed the ways of each client that came to buy her virginity, so that the brothel owners were pissed and losing business. I, too, was untainted by the riff-raff of the bar scene drinking my diet coke in order to sing karaoke.
At first I was flattered by this cute guy’s attention and then offended. He tried all his pick-up tactics and I guess I’m the only one that has resisted his charms because he was astounded and took me on as a challenge and kept trying. When he started bragging about how he threw a man through a plate-glass window onto the sidewalk for touching his ultra sexy ex-girlfriend, and then beating up an off-duty cop that came to the rescue, I lost all interest and even got a bit scared for the first time. My sense of safety is usually right on, and this guy pushed all my alarm buttons. I knew he was a liar, but now I was feeling his danger as well. Anyone who thinks it is ok to use violence and brags about it, is someone I want to avoid by miles. So I waited him out, he tried all his tricks then he lost patience with me and left the bar with the buddy that he proclaimed a bit earlier he had never met. Ugh.
“Marina” had survived to fend off another undesirable another day, but he had ruined my karaoke night. I only got to sing one song before he butted in and then I was very anxious to leave, after giving him a long head start, so he wouldn’t come back later and catch me still there.
So my experience of Breckenridge was colored by that and by a hike that turned out to be a long, dry trek down paved roads. I took a beautiful gondola ride up to the top only to step out onto a mountaintop “fun” park. Another UGH! It was filled with screaming kids and families enjoying superslides, swinging contraptions, bouncing things and all the hubbub of summer camp! My plan was to hike back down to the village and enjoy the views all the way so I skirted around the family fun playground as quick as possible. My “trail” turned out to be gravel and paved roads and after leaving the top I had no view but fancy homes and pavement. It’s my own fault for not doing better research. UGH, number three! I had every intention of resting and then going out again on another trail, but I was depleted and lightning started in the afternoon, and all I could get motivated for was a pedicure! This was the first sign that all was not quite right in my “state of Denmark.”
I was suffering from altitude sickness. I woke up in the middle of the night with a splitting headache and had a fitful nights’ sleep. The morning wasn’t much better, and I had to force myself out of bed in order to pack up and check out. I was so exhausted, with a pounding headache and sick to my stomach. I did a bit of research on the web about altitude sickness and sure enough, my symptoms matched exactly. Breckenridge is at a whopping 9600 feet and it is common for tourists to have trouble there. Even though moving was a chore, I was motivated to get out of there and down to a lower altitude to see if that would help.
I dashed out-of-town without so much as eating a piece of toast but drinking water like I had just found an oasis in the desert. In higher altitudes you are supposed to drink twice the amount of water that you normally should, and I was going to flood my system back to health.
I wasn’t feeling much better after an hour of driving, In fact I was so miserable I had to pull over in Vail and find a place to park and slept in my car for about an hour. I felt a bit better after that but was being a sensitive baby and cried because I was planning on doing this spectacular hike to Hanging Lake on my way to Aspen, but there was just no way I could tax my body with a steep climb. Oxygen deprivation is not something to play around with. I called my buddy Robert and he encouraged me that Aspen is only 7900 feet in elevation, so hopefully I would adjust with time there.
Driving through the beautiful Glenwood Canyon, I mourned the fact that a freeway runs though this gorgeous gorge instead of a footpath. There was no way to appreciate the beauty at 50 miles per hour. I stopped in the town of Glenwood Springs to see an old tavern Robert had mentioned. It has a cool neon revolver sign to decorate the saloon that has been there since the early 1900’s. Glenwood was also down to 5000 feet in elevation so I stayed there, had some lunch and lolly-gagged for a while.
By the time I was back on the road I was feeling my normal, cheery self, with oxygen back into my system, pondering my experience in Breckenridge, singing along with the radio and much relieved. My favorite song of the moment came on, Hunter Hayes’, I Want Crazy and I sang at the top of my voice. I realize that I do want to be crazy in love again but will keep my Marina-like tendencies until I find someone to lose my mind over.
I don’t want good and I don’t want good enough
I want, can’t sleep, can’t breathe without your love
Front porch and one more kiss
It doesn’t make sense to anybody else
Who cares if you’re all I think about
I’ve searched the world and I know now
It ain’t right if you ain’t lost your mind
Yeah, I don’t want easy
I want crazy
Are you with me baby?
Let’s be crazy