Since this is my first post since 2018 – HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Last year was amazing and I am so excited for a whole new spring, summer, & fall to adventure throughout. Winter however, I need a little more push to enjoy.
& no one pushes me like my two best friends. Particularly the one that never fails to beg me to move half way across the country with her.
So on the 10th day of 2019 I flew to Denver – again.
I have been there 3 times in the past 6 months so I guess I can officially add a 📍 to my Instagram profile with Denver next to it… right?
Probably not because I genuinely could not live there. Too cold. I sleep with a heated blanket IN MIAMI. EVERY.NIGHT.
So you can imagine how uneasy I was about coming to my third 📍 while the temperatures were approaching low 30s… OKAY Well now imagine that our plan was to spend two days/one night in the mountains – skiing &, you know, fighting death and frostbite for fUuUun…
You guys know I’m outdoorsy – but when its cold, I am pathetically IN-doorsy; but my Denver people are all killer snowboarders and Mitzi (my favorite travel buddy – I am sure you remember her screams from Curacao) is an excellent skier so I lied about my skiing abilities and somehow ended up on a ski lift going up Breckenridge Mountain. Sing it with me Ariana fans: thank u, Breck.
Quick warning to anyone who has never been skiing: We spent three years getting our gear on once we got there. Thank God Mitzi rented everything ahead of time from Breeze Ski Rentals… all these layers, straps, and ties and poles LORD I almost ended it all right in that shop. Get to the mountain early – like we did… so you can drag your feet – like I did.
Finally it was go time, and if you were there with me you would have had 0 clue that I was absolutely terrified. The last time I skied I was MAYBE 12 years old. Unfortunately for my nerves, my favorite thing to do is over-exaggerate my skills and “wing-it.” We (nauseatingly) skipped the bunny slope and went straight to greens. I should play poker.
Honestly, that first run I thought to myself – “wow! This is nice! I can do this.” Another perk of getting to the mountain early was that there were very few people in the morning. Mitzi and I skied down the green run with no incident.
Now, 100% confident in my abilities, I followed Mitzi right back onto the ski lift without question. We were hoping to meet up with the group as they made their first run down the same green slope.
About 15 minutes into our lift ride I said, “Mitzi, I think we are on a different lift.” She nervously laughed and replied, “yeah I noticed… I can’t even see were it ends.”
My knees went weak. I fantasized about a helicopter hovering over us and plucking me from the danger that approached.
When the landing point finally came into view we were mildly relieved it was a only a blue.
Guys, as someone who hates skiing, I can tell you: skiing is easy. What is hard is getting up. Trying to figure out how to get up is even harder. Remember – Mitzi is a pro. She couldn’t help me get up because she doesn’t fall. A kind instructor took pity on my absurd flailing gave me crash course before going on her way. Thanks to her, I understood the physics behind “getting up” – however it was the execution that defied my grasp.
My Miami Dolphin’s beanie was my savior. Everyone that skied passed us, loved it.
Guys would yell out: “Miamiiii” or “fins up” As they zoomed by. This adoration kept me going. It took us over 2 hours to get down that slope.
My ski fell off twice.
Both my knees twisted right to the verge of snapping.
My fingers were so cold my phone wouldn’t respond to their touch.
I forgot what warmth felt like.
Frostbite began to set in (probably).
After one particularly rough tumble, I decided I needed a break.
“5 minutes” I thought.
Before I could remember that I am Cuban and have no sense of time, some other Miami-enamored macho man shredded his way to my side and grabbed my legs and lifted me to my feet without saying a word.
I begrudgingly thanked him and peered over to Mitzi who was in a laughing fit – fully aware that I was trying to relax but didn’t want to hurt the pride of this handsome stranger. So the beanie had its negatives – but I got so much attention (from men & women alike) that I decided I wasn’t going to take it off the rest of the trip.
We went up the mountain early morning and by the time we made it down that blue slope everyone wanted to eat. My favorite part of the day… besides all the Miami love.
I did one more run after this and then decided that was it for me. I turned in my skies and explored Breckenridge Village on my own –
— until I found fire:
As you can imagine I made myself very much at home and welcomed the carousel of people that stopped through to warm their extremities and make small talk about the Dolphins. There were a surprising number of Miamians. One such character came over and interrogated me a bit about my background and my career; then promptly showed me pictures of his son and asked if I was interested. I can’t make this up.
I hate getting set-up so I politely pretended my phone was ringing and left to get hot chocolate.
The boys dropped all us ladies off at our Airbnb then left to get pizza and alcohol.
We drank, played Cards Against Humanity, and roasted marshmallows until the wee hours of the morning.
Back home I wake up every morning and take my pups for a walk so I try to keep up the habit and do it while I am on vacation too… but in the snow I ran back inside after maybe 5 minutes.
Ashley, Mitzi, Vanessa, and I all wanted to do the Kylie Jenner bikini-in-the-snow pic.
What can I say? I’m a masochist.
Here is why the Kardashians couldn’t keep up with me: I fell in to snow up to my chest for these. Kyle falls in snow up to her chesticles she is going to have a team of people lifting her out while breathing hot air on to her until she was back insider her mansion. Nicole Jaimee does all her own stunts.
Once everyone got their pics we went to breakfast at the Gold Pan Saloon.
The food was so good we almost forgot to make reservations to go tubbing.
We killed an hour by walking around the adorable little colored village then filed into the cars to start towards Copper Mountain.
Tubing was much more enjoyable than skiing.
Even considering that my outer pants (I had three on) fell a little more with each step.
At the top of the hill, workers (I will refer to them from this point on as “throwers”) would fling you with all their might down which ever lane you chose.
Note the beanie. The throwers loved it.
Upon request, throwers would fling & spin you so that you went down whirling completely out of control. We did this in twos, threes, fours, and at one point our entire group (8 in total) went screaming down the hill hooking our feet under the person in front of us’ shoulders.
By the time we got back to Denver we were beat. We power napped then got ready for Denver.
You might look at this outfit & think “how was she not freezing.”
FIRST of all the only thing you should look at is how smartly I tied this outfit with my Dolphin’s beanie.
It’s like chongy-chic
Second of all, as Nina explained to me on the phone the night I was packing, ‘you are only cold while you wait for the Uber. Once you get in to most places (the only places we went to) its warm.’
I was dressed perfectly. I, the peacock, and the beanie – my plumage.
We took obligatory flower shots at the Refinery (Mitzi was not a fan) and partied until all the bars closed.
The next day Mitzi, Nina and I went to brunch (still beanied) and then rode motorized Lyft scooters up and down 16th Street Mall. We got souvenirs for people back home then went back to Nina’s apartment to pack.
Good Bye Dinner was at Barcelona.
Yes, I wore my beanie.
At Barcelona, waiters will stand on a stool and pour wine into your mouth.
Ashley & Pat took the juice like champs.
Nina & Robby dropped us off at Union Station after dinner. I cried silently on the train. It’s so hard leaving Nina. It gets harder every time.
Maybe I am starting to love Denver as much as I love Nina & Ashley.
I drowned my heartache in Combos.