Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Thursday 30th June - Exploring Denver with Leigh and Dan

Up early and packed up.  Bags transferred back to the Hyatt Regency where we stay tonight.  Off to Boulder for our tour of Google.  I am completely in awe of Grant, driving confidently and competently through the Denver town, surrounds and mountainsides.  We arrive at Google Headquarters in Boulder to be met by our gorgeous guide Rio.  WOW – I thought we at CORE Education Ltd, had the best workplace in the world… perhaps it is only second best now.   This place is as much like a home away from home as you could imagine, even down to BYOP – bring your own pet, with dog leash peg stations everywhere.  Can you imagine bringing your pet to work – surreal eh!  The ‘never more than 150 feet from food and refreshment sure is evident with cafes, and drink stations everywhere.  The 'play' philosophy is also evident with a climbing wall, play tables, gaming stations, and much, much more.  The themed rooms are cool too.  Boulder is the site of engineers, mainly working on Google Drive, Google Classroom, and Google Maps.  It sure is all kinds of overwhelming to be in the heartbeat of such Googly goodness.  I really like the look of the flip chrome book and think this might be something I will purchase… All too soon our tour was over!  What an incredible experience!  Thanks Leigh for arranging this MAGICAL add-on!  

Grant driving all around Denver, with his trusty co-pilot Dan!

Off to Boulder central where by chance we met a lady stocking the brochure stand in the centre of the city and she was able to advise us the best stop for breakfast and the best area to explore.  So breakfast at Lucille’s it was – YUM!

Then off to explore Nederland, famous for the cryogenic frozen man.  But oh so much more famous for the Carousel of Happiness.  “Scott Harrison was a 19-year-old Marine Gunner serving in Vietnam where the gift of a music box and the image of a carousel in a mountain meadow calmed him.  Many years later, after rescuing an abandoned carousel, he began carving what would become a whimsical menagerie.  It took him a little over 26 years to hand-carve the 26 animals and a dedicated group of volunteers helped bring the carousel to life in the little mountain town west of Boulder.  The fully-enclosed Carousel of Happiness turns to the  music of a restored 1913 Wurlitzer Band Organ, and is home to a gift shop, toy store and do-it-yourself puppet theater.”  www.carouselofhappiness.org After a walk around Nederland the rain began to fall and we set off back for Denver, stopping at Black Hawk, the scariest town I think I have ever driven through – well beautiful and immaculate, but just back to back Casinos for many, many miles.  Back into Denver for an afternoon of cocktails, laughter and stories with Nita, Terry, Leigh and Dan.  The evening rounded out with Grant and I having a last explore of downtown Denver seeing many amazing statues, gardens and buildings.

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