Monthly Archives: August 2012

Back to Colorado Springs

A couple weeks ago I headed a couple hours south from Boulder to my home town of Colorado Springs for my 10 year high school reunion.  I called this very beautiful bastion of conservative thought and Christian fundamentalism home for 12 years, give or take.  It’s a remarkably pretty place, but it’s not really known for it.  I guess Focus On the Family and the strong military presence in the area get most of the press.

But it was kind of interesting to take this little trip down memory lane; I’ve only been back once or twice since both my father and I moved away from the place in 2003.  So, if your interested in seeing the little town, or knowing a little bit more about where my crazy ass comes from, have a look.

Colorado Springs

Heading into town…

Colorado Springs

The house in which I grew up… Nice place, but I was actually one of the poor kids in the district because I lived in Lower Skyway, which so isn’t as cool as Upper Skyway…

Colorado Springs Deer

A big old buck laying in someone’s front yard. Saw a lot of this around here.

Colorado Springs Deer

A different buck in a different front yard. Like 500 feet from the last one. No flower garden is safe around here.

Cheyenne Mountain High School

Cheyenne Mountain High School. Where I done got my learnin’. Looks more like a small college really.

Cheyenne Mountain High School

The baseball diamond where I spent many of my afternoons. I miss that shit.

Shit yes I’m proud to be an Indian. Actually, they tried to change our mascot while I was a student there. It’s no longer pc to have your mascot be a native american. But, they let us slide, I guess our little guy wasn’t quite as bad as Chief Wahoo.

The Broadmoor

The Broadmoor. The ridiculously swanky 5 star hotel just a mile or two from my high school. Yeah, we were a bunch of spoiled white kids.

The Broadmoor House

See? This is what a lot of the homes in the area look like.

Colorado Springs Foreclosed home

Ha. I guess someone couldn’t quite afford their McMansion.

Cheyenne Mountain High School

I headed up the hill for a while in the afternoon. And by hill, I do mean Cheyenne Mountain, most famous for being the home of NORAD. There’s my high school off in the distance.

The Broadmoor

The Broadmoor from the side of the hill.

Colorado Springs

And finally, our modest downtown.

The Starr Kempf house.

The Starr Kempf house. This place is pretty wild. Some crazy sculptor lived here for years, and his yard is still filled with his giant steel statues. They’re amazing, most of them move in the wind.

Starr Kempf Statue

Colorado Springs Pioneer Musem

Headed downtown now. The Pioneer Museum.

Colorado Springs Pioneer Musem

Sunset Downtown Colorado Springs

A pretty little sunset.

Downtown Colorado Springs

As you can see… the place is bumpin’.

That’s all or C. Springs…  While I was in town I also headed about 20 miles up into the mountains and took a little hike to St. Peter’s Dome.  It’s a little rock formation that offers ridiculous panoramic views of the area.  I’ll show you the place real soon.

-B. Littleton


Filed under The Sights, The Sights of Home

An Evening at Red Rocks

One of the things I had planned for Ms. Müller’s little welcoming party to Colorado was a show at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre just outside of Denver.  I bought us tickets to see a music festival there in a couple of weeks, but with all the shenanigans and goings on, that’s no longer going to happen.

So in an attempt to make the best out of a bad situation, I traded those concert tickets to a friend for a ticket to last night’s Mumford and Sons show.  I’d be lying if I said I didn’t have to choke back some tears once or twice, I was really looking forward to showing this place to Ms. Müller, and I really wish she had been there.  But, it was an absolutely perfect summer night for a concert.  And the show was pretty amazing.

Now unfortunately, the fun police wouldn’t let me bring in my camera, but I did my best with the cell phone, and you can definitely get a feel for the place.  So, if you feel so compelled, have a look at some pictures, and a crappy video clip or two…

Red Rocks Amphitheatre

Welcome to Red Rocks. The line to get in. Gives a bit of perspective on how ridiculous this place really is.

Red Rocks Ampitheatre

Red Rocks Ampitheatre

A bit fuzzy, but does give you a feel for the place…

Red Rocks Ampitheatre

That’s kind of a big rock.

Red Rocks Ampitheatre

We were up in the nosebleeds, but gorgeous none the less.

And while Mumford and Sons isn’t really my genre of music, I have to say they put on a helluva show.

Red Rocks Ampitheatre

The stage…

Red Rocks Ampitheatre

And that’s all she wrote… It’s got to be amazing to stand on that stage looking up at this….

That’s all for today.  Don’t be a stranger.

-B. Littleton

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Filed under The Sights, The Sights of Home

Moving Right Along…

Ok.  So yesterday I told you that Ms. Müller’s visa was denied, and any real chances she has of coming out here have been put off until further notice…  So, now what?

Every day is a struggle.  It’s hard to like, care about shit.

The first two days were brutal.  I was on the road, and I had to keep working.  I spent them in a sweaty and dirty haze, and did my best to actually get my crap done, and to put on a happy face for our customers.  I stayed in the hotel bar into the wee hours of the night sipping Jim Beam, eating my dinner of onion rings and staring off into space.  I didn’t really sleep much.

I suppose it was only natural of me to think that getting home would help.  So I did my best to hold it together, and surprisingly, held it together well enough to finish the job and get back to Pittsburgh for the flight home.  I got in pretty late on Thursday night, and went into the office Friday morning.  I talked with my boss, who was kind enough to work with me so I could get out to Germany as soon as possible, and I booked a ticket using my miles to head out there next week.

Then, with the week’s work finished, and and my damage control efforts behind me, there wasn’t much else to worry about.  No power plants, no part shipments, no planes to catch or flights to book.  I was just at home.  And the next year or so of my life was staring me in the face.  I thought I’d feel better at home.  I was wrong.  I’ve outlined before that home is sort of a quixotic Holy Grail anymore.  When I’m travelling, home sounds wonderful.  When I get home, I realize it’s just an empty apartment with a handful of non-perishable goods and a TV.  I don’t ever really feel at home any more.  As I put it in an earlier post:

“When your life is on the road, not at home, the road becomes your home, and your home becomes sort of a mediocre hotel room that’s just another dot on the map.  I’ve mentioned before that without even realizing it, I almost always refer to whatever hotel I’m staying at as ’home.’   I don’t know what that makes actual home, but I don’t really care for the sensation.”

I think I handled things better for those couple days when I was working, and had at least some modest distractions.  I spent the weekend pouting more than anything else.  I drank too much, and I didn’t eat enough.  Looking around the apartment that a few days before I’d been incredibly excited to prepare for Ms. Müller’s arrival, I couldn’t find the motivation to so much as go to the grocery store and prepare myself a decent meal, let alone start on the laundry from the last two weeks and actually get the place cleaned up.

And Ms. Müller and I struggled to find the time to talk.  On Sunday we both had an overlapping half hour, so she called me on Skype.  And it sucked.  For the first time since we started this crazy transatlantic relationship, I wasn’t like a kid on Christmas when I saw her face.  When she popped up on my screen, the sight of her laying under her covers was like a punch in the stomach.  “This is it” I thought, “this is going to be our relationship for the foreseeable future.  Skype.  Fuck.”  I stared off into space and she gave a futile effort to engage me in conversation.  After about 10 minutes we gave up and said goodnight.  Ms. Müller said it was the first time that she’s ever felt worse after talking to me.

Now Ms. Müller will be starting school soon, and I’m really happy for her.  Not only because college is an amazing experience, but also because right now she has something to look forward to; something to plan for, and after having our hopes dashed, that’s invaluable.  College was her back up plan just in case something exactly like this whole visa thing went down.  So she’s spent the last week registering for classes, looking at apartments, and getting ready to move to the city.

And while it makes me happy to know that she has that to look forward to, it stings like hell that I feel like I’ve been left behind; I feel like I’m stuck on the platform and I’m watching her train pull away from the station.  As soon as we knew for certain that her trip out here was dead, she began her preparations for the next phase of her life.  I just went ‘home.’

This relationship just got a whole lot harder.  The next several months just went from what promised to be an incredible and unforgettable chapter in my life, to another difficult year in power plants and hotel rooms.  But it’s not going to be difficult if I don’t get my shit together.  It’s going to be downright impossible.

So I guess what’s next is finding my big boy pants (they’re undoubtedly  hidden unlaundered in a suitcase somewhere) and doing my best to focus on the fact that I still have this chick, not that I just had 7 months with her taken away.  I need to move forward, and like, be there for her while she does her best to do the same.  It’ll be tough, but at least I’ll be seeing her at the end of next week.  I’m sure that will help.  I hope it will help.

It has to help.

-B. Littleton

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Filed under Randoms