Best Summer Ever, part 5. First screw up and Rockies redemption.
Today our Summer begins, even if we still have some school/work entanglements to clear up this week. First, I called the rec center to find the location for baseball. It’s about 3ish miles away, which we I figured we could bike pretty easily once school lets out for the year. Today we’d have to Uber it over. Then I had doubts about the start time, so I search my Gmail for the registration. The first email in the list came a couple of weeks ago and I missed it completely. It explained that baseball was at Stapleton Rec Center on the west side, not the Stapleton neighborhood on the east side. Are we really so short on people to name things after?
I called the rec center to see if we could reschedule to our side of town. I have to say that it was possibly the best customer service experience that I’ve had since returning from the Philippines 5 years ago. Long story short, they had room for a boy, but no room in the girl’s softball league. They don’t take girls into boys baseball, even though, parental bragging aside, Alexa’s already better than any boy I’ve seen up to a couple years older than her. Lame, but not something that I had time or the inclination to throw down about this morning. We could have gone to another rec center team, but without a car it only works if they are playing in the same place. They took it pretty well after I promised that we’d still play baseball at our park during the time we had scheduled for the league.
Even though I’ve been without my own car since September, I don’t really notice it. I’m antisocial, so don’t have anyone to visit. The kids don’t have anywhere to go that isn’t walking distance. Work is 3 blocks from home. Most importantly, I have a car that I can borrow when M isn’t working. During the summer, we do want to travel farther from home often, so I planned to make taking the bus a regular part of the summer adventure. Today I officially re-remembered how much it sucks to take a bus anywhere when you’re in a hurry or even just trying to plan time. I’ll get the kinks worked out, but, more importantly, I need to learn to live on bus time again. If I were really brave (I’m not) I’d go on bus time and forgo technology for the whole summer.
Riding the bus between East Colfax Ave. and downtown is a trip back to the Colfax of old. Usually, even the most obnoxious people are pretty considerate of little kids, so we have that going for us. I realized once we got off the bus that after 5 years living in Denver this stint, I still don’t know most of the city nearly as well as the first time I lived here. That will change this summer. We took the bus to the end of the line, which was a mistake, but we got to see Union Station to make up for it. Then we followed some drunk people the wrong way and had to double back, but finally made it to the game by the 3rd inning.
I got a 10 game package that included mostly weekday games mostly against teams that nobody wanted to see too much for $300 for all 3 of us. Because I’ve done a half-assed job of checking the details of our plans, I thought that our tickets were in the upper deck of the outfield. But it turns out that we’re just 15 rows back in the first deck all the way down the right field line. By the end of the game, we got down to the 3rd row. Pretty sweet for just $10. They make up for it by charging me $35 for 2 hot dogs, 1 nacho, 1 popcorn, and 2 waters. Tangent–some things are better shittier and cheaper, and baseball is one of those things. I’d trade all the new, fancy, and comfortable stuff for the old, old days of peanuts, hotdogs, soda, and beer–and only one kind of each of those.
Though they’ll say that they had a good time, Alexa and Christopher have no idea what they got to see. Even after getting there late, we saw 5 home runs, including a grand slam by the Rockies, a triple, and 3 doubles. The Rockies won 17-4. In spite of all that, here is what registered: hotdogs, nachos, popcorn, jumbotron with people waving, clapping between pitches, foul balls that we should have brought mittens for, how are we getting home, and who are the red guys? While they’ll develop an understanding of the game after a few more times, the only thing I’m sure we learned tonight is that the Rockies are black and purple.
We stayed until the end and then guessed our way to the bus stop, where we had to wait about 30 minutes for a bus. When we finally got on and made our way down Colfax, the bus filled with East Colfax freaks and started feeling like home again. That’s both comforting and a little disturbing if my new norm is a late night E. Colfax bus. Maybe my wife, M, is right about how I’ll end up after all!
This week is the last of the school year! Tomorrow is class picnics. Thursday is field day and the last day of school. Saturday a birthday swimming party. Sunday is Alexa and Christopher’s first concert! We’ll be using the fashion ideas that we picked up at Goth Night at the Amusement Park, when we go to see the Cure!