A morning in Denver and then a gentle journey to El Paso, Texas
02.06.2012 - 03.06.2012 30 °C
Room 111, Best Western Mission Inn, Las Cruces, New Mexico
5.45pm, Monday 4 June 2012
A brilliant day, again, today, but, in this Blog, we're just going to get us as far as arrival in El Paso. But do remind us to tell you about the biggest pistachio in the world! Don't let us forget.
We'd had a problem getting to the Curtis Hotel in Denver on Saturday afternoon due to street closures. One of those closures was down to a street art exhibition. More on this shortly.
Opposite the Curtis Hotel....
....is the great arts complex. Fairly new, taking in an old 30s building and new constructions. Opera house, concert hall, theatre and cabaret theatre, the local worthies were arriving for a concert by the Colorado Symphony Orchestra. We wished we'd done some research on this and got some tickets. We did catch some Americans "at work". To be fair, they do generally work very hard.
Then came a dinner in a local diner, which was amazingly cheap considering we were in the centre of a major city.
The photos didn't do it justice so will skip those but for $9.99, John's Calves Liver, Onions and Bacon, served with garlic mash and zuccinis was the star of the week. And Bob's fried chicken with similar was also good, both preceded by a large "Garden" salad. Puds are being avoided whenever they are unavoidable!
A wonderful sleep with curtains open to the Denver night skyline heralded free breakfast in the funky (that word again) cafe at the Curtis Hotel. A great selection with lots of things like fruit and oatmeal as well as the usual eggs, bacon and pastries. Guess which Arthur had?
Back up in our room on Floor 15, we could spot the weather reporter on Channel 7 giving out the weather and chatting to artists in the street below us. We could also see her on our TV!
The exhibition had not yet officially got under way, so we beat the crowds which appeared later. Most of the artists seemed to be women and a lot could well be employed in libraries, Arthur thought!
Our Channel 7 weather girl (very impressive - we watched her give the forecast live and interview an artist, no monitor, no notes, no prompter, no producer. Just her and the camera guy):-
Here, a few shots as we wandered the streets of Downtown Denver:-
The free bus that shuttles up and down 16th Street Mall
Our beloved Union Station, isolated by works and fences as they build a new interchange for an ever-expanding light rail network. Denver is buzzing.
And we've always loved the towers in Denver, most of which were here when we first visited in 1987.
Finally back at the room, we could see how busy the street art show had got
An easy, if busy, drive to DIA as Arthur knows it (Denver International Airport) which is massive. Via a gas station nearby to top the Chevvy to brimming (always a challenge to find a gas station near the airport, but pre-planned, and it's not stressful).
At the airport this sign....
reminded us of the ridiculous habit here of adding "e" to make things seem smart, or olde worlde (got me at it now). We've seen "shoppe", everywhere, "towne", "grille" and even a small-ad selling "Old English Buldogges".
Oh, and a great quote from Fox TV (sorry, it was an aberration). Their London correspondent kept talking about when the Queen was "coronated". But then, they only employ Republicans on that channel.
Our gate was right at the very end of the enormous United Airlines terminal, down in the basement where all the flights go to little towns using little jets. It was a bit like Luton Bus Station. There were just 30 others on our flight to El Paso. We had to climb up through a storm which made it a little choppy.
... and we're pretty sure we drove that road today, into Las Cruces.
Checked into a great-value Radisson right at the airport and next door at the Cattle Baron's, we enjoyed a salad from what must be the biggest salad bar we've ever seen, followed by New York steak (Bob) and fried catfish + yummy tartar sauce (John) both served with sweet potato (mmmmm).
then plenty of zzzz's (until VW España phoned at 4.30 am to tell us our new Tiguan instruction book would be in in about 2 weeks. They were not to know!):-
More from El Paso including news of the world's largest pistachio!