Growing up in the southeast you sort of develop this assumption that all weathermen are liars. Well, maybe the word “liar” is a bit brutal. How about “complete morons”? Or, I don’t know, maybe I’m watching a station located somewhere in the Swiss Alps. For example, you turn on the news to see what the day’s weather has in store for you and the dear weatherman (bless his heart – which in the south is just a nice way to insult someone) says, “It’s going to be a cold one out there today folks, you better bundle up! The high for today is 22 degrees and we are expecting snow showers starting around 10:00 am and throughout the night. The radar is predicting anywhere from 2-4 inches of snow.” By the way, these 2-4 inches of snow in the south will shut down the whole city! So, after watching this, you dress for work in your warmest winter sweater, put on those boots and grab your winter coat that you typically only use once a year. You are ready to take on this cold day and you are definitely prepared to tackle the snow miser! You eagerly step outside anticipating the excitement of cold weather in the south, only to discover when you open the front door it’s not cold outside! Despite the warmer than expected weather, you still pry your eyes on the window of your office hoping and praying for some kind of miracle…which never happens. So my point with this long introduction is this – weathermen in Colorado are actually legit!
I, along with several colleagues, was given the opportunity to visit Colorado Springs, CO for the IAMC Spring 2010 Professional Forum. First, let me mention that this was my first time ever to visit Colorado (and the furthest west I’ve ever been). Secondly, I would like to say…wow! I flew into Denver a day before the forum and had planned to drive down to Colorado Springs the following day. I woke up that next morning, turned on the news and there was the infamous weatherman. He proceeded with the day’s forecast…something about it being cold and snowy out. I’m thinking to myself, “Yah right, its freakin’ April 23rd it ain’t snowin’ today!” Several hours later, I’m sitting in bumper to bumper traffic on I25 south…in the middle of a damn blizzard! It’s a miracle; the weatherman actually gave local weather – which ruined my trip, by the way! Where’s the sweater, boots and winter coat when you need them? Just so you know, I packed accordingly to the weather conditions in Atlanta – which happened to be 98 degrees and sunny. Who knew the U.S. consisted of different climates? Anyhow, approximately 4 ½ hours later I arrive in Colorado Springs (note: it’s only supposed to take an hour at most). That’s the last time I ever doubt a Colorado forecast! I’m not sure if anyone else has noticed, but Colorado Springs has this invisible shield from bad weather. No kidding, they even claim to have over 300 days of sunshine!
The IAMC forum was held at the luxurious Broadmoor resort and spa, which is nestled in a valley, surround by beautiful mountains. The Broadmoor is indescribable! You really must visit this place to fully appreciate the beauty and elegance it has to offer. I mean, they even have umbrellas at every entrance for your convenience. How much better can it get? Of course, it took me several days to realize that the umbrellas were not for rain but for blocking the wind from messing up my hair.
As I had mentioned earlier, I was on this trip for business but I had planned to stay a few days over to enjoy the area. However, I did manage to squeeze in a few fun things while I was staying at The Broadmoor…well, if by fun you mean eating. I was fortunate enough to eat at The Tavern on two occasions – once for dinner and once for lunch. If you get a chance to eat there (and you don’t suffer from allergies) ask to sit in the atrium, especially at night! It is absolutely gorgeous at night. The trees are lit up and the lighting is low – this would be a great place for a romantic dinner. It feels like you are sitting in a beautiful city park eating dinner – very nice (hint, hint guys!). I suggest the Filet Mignon of Beef, it was delicious. For a lighter meal during lunch, I suggest the Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad. I’m not exactly sure what they did to it, but it was pure heaven! I also got the chance to experience the Golden Bee. Yes, I said experience – and no, it’s not a burlesque show. The Golden Bee is an old English pub that was moved from England and reassembled in Colorado Springs. This is a must if you are ever in the area. A ragtime piano is played nightly by a charming man dressed the part while the entire pub engages in a fun sing-a-long. My favorite part of the night was when the host walked by and “bee-ed” me! He walks around the pub and strategically throws these sticky bees at you. I’m telling you, this man has skill! I’m not sure why this is a gimmick but I like it…and so it seemed for everyone else! The Golden Bee is apparently a great place to go if you plan on getting a little sideways as they offer ale by the yard and half yard. I didn’t have one, but it was fun to watch those who did! If you are going to grab a bite to eat, you must try the Chicken Pot Pie or the Fish n’ Chips. Both were delish but the Chicken Pot Pie was a-ma-zing! The one night I chose to venture out, I decided on Blue Star which is a restaurant located just around the corner from The Broadmoor on South Tejon Street. Don’t be discouraged when you pull up and think you’ve arrived to a mechanic’s garage. I almost turned around and left but then curiosity got the best of me so I decided to check it out. It’s actually a very upscale, retro place on the inside! So, don’t judge a book by its cover. The food, on the other hand, was not so good. The best thing I ate was the free appetizer they give you which is bread and humus. Seriously, the appetizer was surprisingly good. My mom was there with me so we decided to each order something and share. I ordered Black Pepper Seared Beef Tips and she ordered the Chicken “Cordon Blue Star”. Sure, both sound appetizing but it was quite the opposite. Needless to say, I’ll never go back, nor make recommendations.
My stay at The Broadmoor was, for lack of a better word, awesome! The resort was breathtaking, the staff was extremely friendly and my room was so ornate it made me feel like a Disney princess (except the time I had to use the iron to heat up a sandwich – hey, it was made by Toastmaster)! But, like every fairytale, it had to come to an end. Luckily, my stay in Colorado Springs would continue on for another 4 days – just not at The Broadmoor. My mom flew back to Atlanta and my husband (fiancé at the time) flew into Denver to accompany me on my 4 day excursion. We so luckily got to stay at the Drury Inn! It was like I was Cinderella and the clock struck midnight – my resort turned into a cheap hotel chain! Seriously, I’ll stop with the fairy tale analogies but only after one more.
To be continued…