Dispatches, thoughts, and miscellanea from writer Jon Konrath

One mile high

Hello from Denver. It’s a cool 66 degrees at a one-mile altitude, but it’s expected to jump to 90 by lunch. But right now, I’m at the pool on the roof of the Warwick hotel, looking out at the skyscrapers of downtown, and suffering from a very severe case of Deja Vu, and a minor case of altitude reacclimation.

Our trip went fine, with the only minor hitches being that Sarah’s ATM card got locked yet again by an overzealous Bank of America anti-fraud robot, and a 45-minute delay in the air due to some stupendous thunderstorms around Denver. The weather cleared by the time we touched down, and my suitcase was already on the conveyor by the time we took the little train to the baggage area. We also got stuck with a little Kia with power nothing, but it also has XM radio, which is a new itch that’s developing in the consumer area of my brain. (There is an endless array of metal programming, and maybe that would be a good way to eat up my two hours a day in the car.)

It is weird to be here. WEIRD. We went to the Rocky Mountain Diner last night for dinner, and it felt exactly like it was the summer of 2007 again. The place hadn’t changed at all, aside from the fact that our favorite waiter (the guy that looks like a young Ed Harris) was not there. We drove around last night, looking at our old neighborhood and our favorite haunts, and everything was the same. The two big changes we noticed: one, our old Safeway (The “unsafeway” on Clarkson) got completely facelifted, and looks like every modern Safeway now, not the early 90s ghetto look it once had. And the vacant lot caddycorner to our old place on 22nd and Market is now a super-huge townhome/loft place, much like the place we lived in. It’s freaky to see that vacant lot transformed into a giant community.

Probably the biggest weird thing is that after we finished our dinner, we had tons of time to do anything, and we realized that in our year here, we went to a lot of baseball games and movies, and ate a lot of food, and that’s it. We don’t really have any friends here that we wanted to visit, and we had no real hangouts, aside from the Target store at the Stepleton mall. We have an afternoon to kill today, and don’t know exactly what we want to do. I feel sad about this, but it also makes me realize that when we get back home, I need to get off my ass and make sure we don’t do the same thing in Oakland. I don’t know what we need to do, but we need to explore more.

It is nice to be here, though. I think we need to take more of these mini-vacations. And I am really looking forward to tonight’s game. Wearing my Brad Hawpe t-shirt today, and one person already came up and asked if I was going to the game tonight. I am hoping to hook up with a couple of people from high school that will be at the game too, and I plan to do some serious damage at the clubhouse store.

It’s getting hot here, and I didn’t fly out here to sit on the computer, so I better get to it.