Day 1: Saturday, June 16
Here we go again....Long, long ago a family with just one kid toured the country in their Winnebago and had a grand time. Upon the arrival of their second kid (August 24, 2012: Enter Max Royan), they decided their carefree ways were over and that dear old RV had to be put up for sale. It would make more sense to "fly" around the country like "normal" people seem to do. Slowly but surely the plan formed to head out to the mountains this summer - on a plane and stay in a hotel. This decision was, of course, unilaterally April's idea. Months went by and plans developed.... but the RV gleam in Mark Royan's eye just could not...would not... be extinguished. So they agreed upon a compromise:
Mark's parents, recently retired, volunteered to drive RV out to Denver and the family could fly out and meet them. Having never flown with kids before, April made lists and packed everything in its place weeks in advance. Mark packed an hour before they left for the airport. Running late, he informed April that he needed to shave. April told him to wait and do it at the hotel. Mark told April she was ruining his life. The set in place a downward stress spiral that led to screaming kids in the check in line. April, in an effort to "cool her jets" decided to take the boys for a stroll around the terminal. She would return to find that Mark had checked a enormous bag, that no sane person would ever carry on to a plane.This bag, of course, contained an overwhelming supply of bottles, formula and toys. All of which, April intended to have with her in the comfort of the main cabin. April has her first meltdown of the trip. Super.
The check in chick took pity on a
TSA: "You can't get on the plane with that bag."
April: "I can't get on the plane without these bottles."
TSA: "Now you've already touched everything."
April: "Here - take all my other stuff instead - I need these bottles."
TSA: "Miss, that's not really how security works."
April: "Ok, great - here you go - I've got what I needed. You can have it back."
Either the agent assumed April was incapable of processing their conversation, or he was married himself. He sighed, took the bag, and left.
The flight was packed. Prior to boarding, we had decided that the worst things that could happen were (not necessarily in the following order): screaming, vomit, pant shitting, and seat kicking. Prior to taxi: Andrew had kicked the seat of the man in front of him 5 times, Max was screaming hysterically, but only after spitting up half his bottle on April. As we were batting .750, the trip was off to a great start. Mark looked over at April, truly miserable, and mouthed "We are never doing this again." And then he was silent (Max was not). 2 hours later he spoke again. "You know what that RV was? Money. Well. Spent."
Day 2: Sunday, June 17
There Are No Whales In DenverSunday morning found us digging into the local activities. Andrew insisted that the first stop should be the Denver Aquarium. He was specifically looking forward to seeing all the "whales" that Mark had told him would be there.
Day 3: Monday, June 18
Triple DOn Monday, we started our commitment to sample the plethora of Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives locations in Denver. First order of business was to install the Flavor Town app and map out our attack. Breakfast found us enjoying this delicious Snickers Latte and giant breakfast burrito at Sam's No. 3. Andrew turned his nose up at our adventurous ordering and got himself a morning grilled cheese... with smiley fries.
Day 4: Tuesday, June 19
For lunch we sampled another Food Network fav, Jack-n-Grill....
Day 5: Wednesday, June 20
Mountains and Zoos
But Mark had an ace in the hole. While it took him four and a half hours to go up and down Bierstadt, it took another 6 hours to deal with a pre-kickoff RV debacle.
If you are ever interested in exercising emergency management and problem solving, take a few summer trips with a motor home. The RV had some sort of rear wheel meltdown. This issue was discovered after Mark and Ray picked up the RV from the tire store where the RV had already been getting a blown out tire replaced. Tow trucks were called and the RV was hauled away on a flat bed trailer. What will happen next?