Arapaho Basin and Back Home Again.

[Day 3-4 – Sunday-Monday, 12/21-22/2008] – Arapaho Basin

The two full days of snowboarding is now a complete blur. Of the many times I fell down and couldn’t get up again, looking up once in a while at the view was breathtaking. I think if I didn’t fall down as much as I did, I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the view while resting my thighs. It was a little embarrassing to have kids fly by me right after I fall and eat snow. This trip was the most tiring trip I ever took. The thin air, cold, and physical demand on my body is something I really need to get used to if I go again.

Injuries. Other than the bruised butt and broken confidence, I think I sprained my wrist. I was going down a green run and there was a really wide turn. I was going a little fast and not really good at turning yet. There was a little hill/bump everyone was going around, but since Joseph’s teaching skills were really sub-par, I couldn’t turn. I made about two feet of air and at first I thought was really cool, but then reality slapped me in the face and I had absolutely no idea how to land. C’mon, I still had trouble getting off the freaking lifts without falling! I kind of landed ok, but ended up falling back, catching myself with my hands, but I hurt my wrist. Maybe it was the thin air that cut off signals to be brain that it was hurting because I didn’t notice the pain until I got back in Houston. Anyway, still no broken bones, whoot!

I like food, a lot. We ate at a bunch of places in the Keystone area:
Legends Cafe – Pizza (half pepperoni, half mushroom)
Given the fact that we were hungry as hell, this place is awesome. It sits right at the bottom of the runs and right next to the parking lot. After a good morning of snowboarding, this is the place to go. They have a wide variety of foods,

Marcello’s at Town Center in Dillon – Spicy Tomato Basil, Italian Sausage, and Tiramisu
We wanted to drive Frisco, but got really hungry and ended up at Dillon. The food was ridiculously awesome and the spicy tomato basil was the best I have ever had ever in my life. I even told our waiter to compliment the chef on it. The entree was a good follow up and the desserts were great too. Joseph, Vik and I split our desserts so we could try them all, YUM! Highly, highly recommended.

Black Mountain Lodge – Kobe Beef Burger
This is another restaurant at Arapaho Basin and sits at the top of the Exhibition Lift. It has a great view, but the food wasn’t as good. The burger was a bit dry and the not as flavorful. I don’t recommend the Kobe Beef burger, but there was the Elk Soup or something I wanted to try. Maybe next time.

After all our snowboarding adventures, we got well rested. Surprisingly, I was only sore after the second day. On the last day, I wasn’t or tired. YAY!

[Day 5 – Tuesday, 12/23/2008] – Denver, Colorado

The drive back to Denver was much less scary that the trip up the mountain. There wasn’t any snow and the weather turned out to be great. We checked back in the Hyatt and walked around Denver again. We had lunch at some sushi place and a bottle of sake, YUM!

We were all looking forward to our reservations at the Rodizio Grill, $32.00 for a Brazilian food fest! It was just like Fogo de Chao, but much cheaper and just as good. We met up with an old Houston acquiantance and his sister. Afterward, we all (six of us) crammed ourselves in a BMW and the guys were dropped off at some bar.

Awww... It was our last night in Colorado, so we started the drinking. Vodka+Sprite, three wise men (no so wise to get after all), some crazy ass drink the bartender got us (we had to use two straws and it ended with a coffee aftertaste), and I got a complimentary drink to end the night. We were walking toward the free shuttle that took us back to our hotel. Someone said, “we can walk, it’s right there.” Our drunk asses listened and walked down about ten cold and windy blocks to get back in the Hyatt. Damn that person whoever said it was “right there.” Sohel’s sober mind could have knocked some sense into us, but he was “sick” and couldn’t think straight. Whatever, damn him too. Hahaha…

Two Advils, bunch of water and I was out for the night.

[Day 6 – Wednesday, 12/24/2008] – Denver, Colorado

Luckily, I drank enough water to wake up with a minimal headache. We got all our stuff together and threw it in the back of the Pacifica. For some reason, Sohel carried his backpack with him. I have absolutely no idea why…

We made our last round hitting all the Denver places we wanted to visit with time as our enemy and Sohel as its ally. Remember how he booked a flight later than us to get to Denver? Well, guess when his flight was to get back to Houston? Two hours earlier than us. It’s freaking holiday season and getting to the gate would take longer than normal. We had to drive him up to the airport early to make sure he makes his flight, cutting out two hours of our time in Denver.

Denver Mint. Bang, Bang. I Want This For My Room. The Brown Palace, Amazing. No Meaning without a Reading.

After we dropped him off, we return the Pacifica. Sohel left his two-dollar straw hat in the trunk and we have to return it to him. Man, this kid causes so much trouble, haha. We ended up throwing his cowboy hat away since he didn’t want to walk 200 yards to pick it up. Lazy. Anyway, we hopped in the plane and got back to Houston and the heat and the humidity.

Lessons learned from the trip:
1) Work out six months before snowboarding, focusing on legs.
2) Everyone should book the same damn flight.
3) NEVER take snowboarding lessons from Joseph.
4) Zicam works as indicated on the bottle.
5) When Vik sleeps, he makes kicks and screams like a spoiled brat.

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