Having spent the last few days hiking in Boulder and in nearby Rocky Mountain National Park, we also wanted to spend time visiting the actual town of Boulder. This was primarily because we have been thinking about living their one day. Now, don’t go getting crazy thoughts – we are NOT moving anytime soon, but we’ve discussed the possibility of moving out West one day to see what it’s like. Knowing that Sally and Owen and Tyler’s stepsister, Heather, all really enjoy living there helped to convince us it was worth consideration.
That being said, way before our visit, we both knew we’d probably could not afford a house in Boulder; we don’t teach for the money. However, there are several neighboring towns within a 15 to 20 minute drive that would be affordable and looked nice based on our wandering the inter-web. Therefore, it became important for us to not only check out Boulder, but also some of Boulder County.
So, what did we think?
Well, we both loved Boulder. The downtown area, which is dominated by the Pearl Street Mall, was super cute, filled with shops, yummy restaurants, and street performers entertaining the big, but not too big, crowds.The people of Boulder were incredibly active. We saw many bikes, rollerblades, and runners in our two day visit, and the people were always really friendly! In fact, Tyler continues to be fascinated by how polite all of the drivers were – a refreshing change from his days in Boston! There was also barely any traffic. “Traffic” in Boulder is literally waiting for the light to change a second time; that’s it! Finally, the scenery was fantastic. Boulder literally sits right up against the mountains and the municipal government has done a phenomenal job of creating paths for joggers and bikers to not only get around the city, but also to lead them to their neighbor – nature.
It was awesome.
Having figured all of this out pretty quickly, we crossed our fingers that the adjacent and more budget-friendly towns would be equally enthralling.
Now, having reflected on our visit for a few days, I can say with a good measure of confidence that we didn’t LOVE any of the towns we visited, but I can also say that we did not HATE them either. The difficult part of our visit that we were only able to drive through each town for about an hour or so, which I imagine limits one’s perspective.
Conversely, I felt as if I was experiencing the sensation associated with going on college tours. I don’t know about anyone else, but my parents brought me on about
eight million 15 or so college tours. After the first few, I usually got a feeling fairly quickly about whether or not I could see myself attending that school. The same happened with these towns!
While neither of us could tell you exactly why, one town really struck us as “blah”, while another made us think, “Ok. I think we could do this one day.” Thus, the Boulder area remains on our “someday” list.