The Wild West – Part II

Denver Adventure – Part II

I found a dolly by the baggage claim and loaded up my luggage. Then I made my way to the taxi stand and grabbed a cab to take me to the hotel. It felt like I was on one of my typical travel adventures, the only difference being a few extra suitcases in tow. I had followed this routine many times when I traveled around Europe years earlier. It felt easy and familiar. Not the least bit scary.

Once I was in my hotel room, with some of my stuff unpacked, I plopped down on the bed and assessed my situation. I may not remember accurately, but I don’t think there was any anxiety upon my arrival. I wasn’t fretting, “Oh my God, what have I just done?”

My modus operandi when traveling was to live in the moment. I relied greatly on my intuition to guide my path, step by step. So, my first inkling was to explore the city. I went down to the hotel lobby and picked up a local map and headed out for a stroll to get the lay of the land and have something to eat.

It was a nice town. A cute town. There were restaurants, and shops, and movie theaters, and cultural venues. But an important and completely unfortunate detail quickly dawned on me as I walked around.

Denver is TINY.

I looked for office buildings, but there weren’t many I could identify, which meant there weren’t going to be many employment opportunities either. After a few conversations with the locals, I learned with much dismay that downtown was merely the pupil of Denver’s eye. Most of the city was a vast network of sprawling highways!

Yikes. I was not prepared for this.

How did I overlook that little factoid? I assumed, erroneously, that Denver was just like any major east coast city. That there would be plenty of employment opportunities within walking distance from whatever home base I chose. A car would not be a necessity.

I stumbled back to the hotel in a daze, stunned by this unexpected revelation. I started to fret. Oh my God, what have I just done?

The next day I awakened with a heavy shroud of foreboding gripping me before I was fully conscious. I knew I was in trouble. I felt nauseous with fear and discouragement, but I wasn’t ready to give up just yet. I decided my priority should be to try to find a place to live, and then focus on finding employment. I still had a fair amount of money saved and could afford a few months without income.

As I started making inquiries about apartments for rent, anxiety and self-doubt began to close in and suffocate me. I had no idea where to look for a viable place to live, what locations would be navigable without a car, or how well the mass transit system served the areas I was considering. The unknown variables seemed insurmountable. I made many calls that day but ended up not leaving the hotel room. Before I fell asleep in the fetal position, I decided that if tomorrow was more of the same, I had no choice but to go back to D.C. and hang my head in shame and failure.

Then something incredible happened.

The third day, I awoke feeling another shroud around me, but this time it was a pervasive sense of peace, grace, and KNOWING. I don’t know how I knew, but I knew that day was the day I was going to find a place to live. I felt completely relaxed. And I started making phone calls again. I trusted my feelings to guide me and when I got a sense that “this is the one,” I made an appointment for a showing and took a cab to the apartment complex.

En route, I was pleased to see multiple bus stops along the highway. Especially the one near the entrance of the garden apartments. I was buoyed by the fact that fully furnished apartments were available. There was a huge mall right across the street, so I would be able to take care of all my needs for food, sundries, even entertainment. There was a vast public park within walking distance.

The apartment was adorable. Clean and bright. It had one large bedroom, large living room, decent kitchen and bathroom, with a dining nook. It was on the top floor so I wouldn’t have to worry about footsteps falling on my head. The price was right, and it was available immediately!

Absolutely perfect in every way.

I signed the lease, left my deposit check, went back to the hotel to get all my things, and was fully moved in later that afternoon.

Wow. Miraculously, my first essential task was accomplished. I was so happy I completely forgot that only the day before I had expected to leave Denver in defeat.

What a difference a day makes.

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