Friday, August 10, 2007

Getting out of Dodge

I woke up this morning with a strong urge to go someplace, so I decided to go on a writing adventure. In The Artist's Way, Julia Cameron talks of "artist's dates," a time to take your inner artist out to play. I've been spending too much time writing at home, so I decided I'd branch out a bit. I charged my cell phone, lap top and camera batteries and headed up into the mountains.

First, I went to Black Hawk and Central City, two gambling towns in the mountains. I'm envisioning a scene in my book in which the two sisters go to Central City so I thought this would be good research.

This is the Central City Opera House. My husband brought me here a few years ago to see Candide. Remember the scene in Pretty Woman where Julia Roberts proves what a sensitive lady she is by crying at the opera? Yeah, I totally flunked that test. Though I was so bored I wanted to cry. And Candide is in English!

Note to self: when you go to check out a gambling town, don't go at 10 a.m. on a weekday morning. Not much happening. Sure, the casinos are open, but most of the shops and restaurants are not. Luckily, I've been to Central City at night (see above) and I think I have pictures somewhere of what it looks like at night.

On the way back down the mountain, I stopped near Clear Creek. A woman and her little girl were in the creek sifting the water with kitchen utensils. "Found any gold?" I asked. The woman laughed and explained that she had taken a picture of her daughter in the creek and they were getting pebbles to put around the picture frame that she would put the picture in and send to her daughter's grandparents. Cute idea, huh? Another woman sunned herself on a rock like a snake. I stood in the icy cold water, wrote, watched butterflies and listened to the water and the wind and the traffic on Highway 6.

Then I went to Red Rocks near Morrison. I thought I might even write in the amphitheater. But it was blocked off for a concert tonight: The String Cheese Incident is (are?) playing one of their last gigs. Which explains all the hippies camping out.

The stage, of course, was blocked off. I watched roadies getting the stage ready for a bit.

These intrepid folks had crossed the police tape. I've only been to 2 concerts at Red Rocks (Tracy Chapman and Seal). After I climbed the steps to get up there I remembered why: you've got to train to be ready for those bad boys. This being Colorado, several people were jogging up and down the stairs. I was sucking air and pouring sweat just walking!
I had planned to stop for lunch in Morrison, but the afternoon rainstorms came just as I got in the car, so I came on home for peanut butter & jelly (no-sugar-added, spreadable fruit).


Ms. Peri said...

I cannot believe you didn't stay at Red Rocks for SCI :-)

You can get SCI ringtones, ya' know...

Carleen Brice said...

I think I'm more a cheddar kinda girl. I shouldn't say that. I don't really know their music, and I very much admire how they made their band a success on their own terms.

iyan and egusi soup: said...

dear carleen:

an artist's date indeed! (this is the part of the artist's way i most often practice.)

after i've written at home for some time, i too like to venture out a bit--mostly coffee shop/bookstore hopping though. your post encourages me to think more creatively about writing space.