At lunch I scampered to the Tattered Cover to buy Waterland for the library's book club. I saw that Donna Tartt's The Secret History is now available in trade. I suppose I'm not the book snob I privately want to be if I buy paperbacks, even if they are trade. I didn't see Underworld. Anyway, strolling back along 16th street, as I read the list of visiting authors (Kurt Vonnegut next week! Zounds!), someone called to me: "Ma'am?"
May I just aside here that I hate to be called Ma'am. I know it's hypocritical of me: I'm over 18 and legally adult and a woman, and since I insist on "woman" not "girl" I should accept "ma'am" instead of "miss," too, but it makes me cringe.
I looked up to see someone in the parking lot, a nice-looking young man, who with his friends wanted to know where to eat in downtown Denver. Where do I begin? I asked his price range; he gave it. We were on 16th between Larimer and Blake, so I pointed out the Firehouse. I had a cilantro pesto there once. Because it was there, I pointed to Las Delicias, but I said I didn't like it. By this time his three companions had joined him, and one of them asked something that I heard as "sushi bar" because that's what I like, so I said "There's a sushi bar right there." Whereupon he clarified: "What about a sports bar, where we can watch a baseball game?" Oh. I maybe should have thought of Rockbottom Brewery, which is much more sportsy, but I gave them the basic tourist advice: one block up, one block over: the Wynkoop. I didn't think to advise them to try the elk, though.
RDC and I walked when I got home. I would really like to know how far that walk is. It takes me over 45 minutes when I'm alone with a Walkman, or almost an hour when RDC and I go together. It's a good distance, especially for me right now: long enough to make me feel I'm doing something worthwhile, not so short that it's ineffectual or so long it's exhausting.
Two days of administrative leave on Thursday and Friday because of office redecoration. I plan to lounge about in my underwear and eat macaroni & cheese out of the pot. That loafing luxury is not mine but belongs to someone RDC was in grad school with. I don't even like macaroni & cheese. Actually on Thursday I shall prep for my Law exam next Wednesday; on Friday RDC and I plan to go to RMNP to observe the elk in rut. I don't know how I feel about that. I certainly don't like witnesses myself; and the elk have often been disturbed by the kind of human behavior I don't partake in, but just being there makes me suspect in my own mind.
Two weeks ago RDC and HAO and I went to RMNP and did the usual Cub Lake Trail. Hiking up that end of Moraine Park is often rewarding in its wildlife, and this day was no exception. On the way up, we saw only small fry like birds and rodents, but once down again in the valley, we passed through a herd of cows and calves. HAO had never seen elk outside a zoo before, and here they were. I don't know how to tell this year's from last year's calves. The littlest ones looked awfully big to be only three or four months old, but I guess they have to bulk up fast to have any chance of making it through the winter. Overheard: "I guess they don't allow hunting here."
(Commentary: a park is not always an amusement park. Merriam-Webster's 10th Collegiate, definition 2b: "an area maintained in its natural state as a public property." I would quarrel with the term "maintain," though, since a park is not maintained (excepting roads), nor fires fought on it. Except that rangers do replant flora that the overpopulation of humans threatens. Okay. But still, the illusion we so like that all the Parks are wide open, natural spaces could not be preserved if hunting were permitted. Roads, yes; rifles, no.)
Blake has had his bath and is making himself all pretty; we are listening to WAM's Requiem; RDC is grading; and I am about to finish up here and read Angela's Ashes. It is 8:30 and I have fulfilled all my obligations of the day; and my craving for chocolate sorbet was quelled by a pear. Life is good.
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