Pixie Haircuts & Rabid Bats – Road Trip: Boulder, Colorado
August 29, 2011
Boulder, Colorado: the land of dramatic clouds, pixie haircuts, and rabid bats.
I’d been wanting to check out Boulder for awhile – part of my reasoning for going on this cross-country road trip was to suss out potential places to live, and somehow I’d gotten it in my head that Boulder might be one of those places. So while Chris and Matt attended a work retreat in Colorado Springs, I headed north.
Here’s my ideal criteria for potential homes*:
1. Green/Lots of trees and plants/Easy access to nature (parks, hiking, rock climbing, etc)
2. Bikeable/Public transportation
3. Interesting/Historical architecture
4. Near a body of water
5. Good food/art/music scenes (ie, culture)
Boulder scored well on all points.
It’s an adorable little town, with quaint architecture, lots of good restaurants and cafes and funky little shops. I’m big on architecture and aesthetically pleasing buildings, but I also long to live somewhere GREEN after spending the first part of my life in desert that is Southern California. I don’t know about winters yet but Boulder seems like it could be a good place to call home. Everyone I saw looked healthy and relaxed – apparently Boulder is one of the happiest and healthiest cities in the country. Friendly people, good food, nice weather (at least while I was there), interesting architecture, beautiful natural backdrop, small town feel, and slower pace – check, check, check.
Another thing I like about Boulder is its strong bike culture. One of my goals is to live in a city where I don’t need a car to get around – for environmental, health and quality of life reasons. There’s also river that runs through the center of town that people inner tube down on the weekends.
One random thing I saw a lot of in Boulder that I don’t remember seeing much of in Los Angeles – Pixie haircuts. Women with cute, short, boyish hairstyles. Now I’m tempted to chop my hair…maybe when I decide to transition back to blonde from the current red. Next year?
A pixie haircut seems like it would be very convenient for hiking. My first morning in Boulder I went on a hike with a friend of a friend, Hoang, who I’d somehow become Facebook friends with. We decided on the Chataqua trail, and Hoang’s dog Banjo led the way. The altitude and steep trail made it quite difficult for me to hike and talk and breathe at the same time, but it was a gorgeously green hike with lots of interesting rock formations jutting towards the sky and an expansive view of the valley from the top.
After the hike we stopped at the awesome Boulder Farmer’s Market. Apparently Colorado is famous for its peaches, so I bought a big juicy one for breakfast. It was gloriously sweet and messy. Looking around at the crowd, I felt like I fit in more with the people surrounding me than I had in LA.
The Farmer’s Market surrounds one of Boulder’s landmarks, the Dushanbe Teahouse. I read about this place on TripAdvisor’s Top Attractions in Boulder (I’d recommend checking TripAdvisor’s list for any city you’re visiting). The astonishingly intricate, handcrafted tea house was built in Tajikistan and shipped over as a gift to the city of Boulder. It’s absolutely gorgeous on the outside and the inside. I got myself a cup of tea and sat on the vine-draped terrace.
“Forty artisans from Tajikistan hand made the teahouse over a period of two years, took it apart, and then packed the pieces into about 200 crates to be shipped to Boulder. The trades used by the artisans were passed from generation to generation within families, such as the use of nature, and repetition of patterns, descendant from traditional Persian design. Also, no power tools were used in the original construction of the tea house.”
That there’s some pretty interesting/historical architecture!
So the only thing going against Boulder at this point is the rabid bats. But then again, now that I’ve gotten the rabies vaccines, I’m immune for a few years. So I guess I’m covered!
You can read more about my encounter in this blog post. I’ve done a bit of research since the incident, and I’m pretty this is the guy I saw, 4 inches from my face, when I looked down at my arm:
In my next few posts I’ll be sharing about my CouchSurfing experience in Boulder, and some of the nommy nommy Italian and Creole food I had there!
* If we’re talking ideal ideal, like dream ideal, frogs and fireflies would be abundant too.