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Monday, March 20, 2023

Real Life – My Colorado Rocky Mountain High


Pent-up travel demand is not fake news, if this has crossed your mind. And as when anything, from sink drains to emotions, has been blocked, there are consequences.

I have been on the receiving end of unprovoked vitriol in Heathrow; endless, confused queuing at O’Hare; and the maddening mandate that “between 30-40 carry-ons must be gate-checked on this flight.”

I might not even have minded complying, as I did, with the gate-checking plea, had my carry-on followed the maxim of last on-first off. But of course my bag lingered in the belly of that plane until the final minute, further dragging out a commute that had been beset by just about every possible snag.

In future, I will comply with my chaos-adverse son’s admonition to travel only while wearing large, very visible noise-cancelling headphones. Then when I cannot hear the gate agent’s instructions, unintelligibly delivered through a mask into a sound system installed in the 1980s, I will have a plausible excuse for my lack of cooperation that has nothing to do with my birth year. I will also make progress listening to my book.

Apparently I am a Boomer, something I never think about unless I am in the company of Millennials.

Enjoying a scenic drive toward the Flatiron Mountains with this age group the other day—to hear them marveling at their own arrivals into the mid-thirties—reminded me of how managing angst is central to the human experience.

Yet in the stands of CU Boulder’s Folsom Field, I felt ageless, as all concerns fell away, 5,430 feet above sea level. Tucked between my son and his wife, we were simply fans in an ocean of 53,000 fans, rooting for the Buffaloes on a stunning autumn afternoon, and ready to have a great time!

Mascot “Ralphie” thundered around the stadium. We sang. We cheered.

And won!

It was definitely worth the trip. ©

Patti Koltes
Patti Koltes
Real Life © by Patti Koltes. Contact her at pkoltes@gmail.com.