“We met 10 years ago when I was in Germany and Felix was in California… on the internet,” Kathrin replied when asked by a friendly young woman in the New Belgium Brewing Company who was sitting next to me about how we knew each other.
Ten years… wow! Who says the Internet doesn’t breed long-lasting, deep friendships. From the time I would be working in the CAD Loft at Stanford at 2:00am in the morning, to visits in California, Tennessee and Pittsburgh, we have kept in good touch over the years.
Happily, Kat is now engaged to Guy—a former labmate of hers during their time at Carnegie Mellon University, and a fun guy I met five years ago well before they even started dating!—and one day a couple of weeks ago they spontaneously decided that they wanted to see the mountains after living in the plains of Chicago, IL / Lafayette, IN for some time now. So they booked a cheap ticket to Denver (hooray for Southwest!), drove up to Fort Collins, and voila! I got to see Kat and Guy again!
Their visit was for just two days, but we managed to pack quite a few things in for them to experience “the essence” of Fort Collins and beyond. This included:
- Going to Bike Demo Day (courtesy of The Cycologist) in the Horsetooth dog park and test riding a trio of Salsa road bikes. The bikes—especially the high-end, lightweight-steel Primero road bike—had a sweet, lively ride, and now both Kat and Guy—who formerly had only ridden mountain bikes—want road bikes, yes!
- Lunch at Sanford’s Grub & Pub in Old Town Fort Collins, which sported much 1960s paraphernalia.
- Free beer tasting and a factory tour of the New Belgium Brewing Company.
- Hiking up to the Horsetooth Falls (or as Kat would call it, “waterdrip”) in Horsetooth Mountain Park, which was amazingly lush and beautiful.
- Dinner at Rio Grande’s, home of “the best margaritas in Fort Collins.”
- Pool at the Trail Head Tavern.
- The “Parade of Years” Car Show in Estes Park en route to the Rocky Mountain National Park.
- An Italian lunch at Dunraven Downtown in Estes.
Some general people photos are here. Also, check out the posts/photos for Horsetooth Mountain Park, the Parade of Years Car Show, and the Rocky Mountain National Park. In addition, you can check out Guy’s photos.