Hamming it Up at age 6
The song Girl From Ipanema came out when I was 6 and for some reason I loved it. It was 1964 and my family was living in a "Mad Men" sort of world, in New York. I remember hamming it up with an imaginary microphone at one of my parents' gatherings. The apartment was filled with cigarette smoke and clinking cocktail glasses and I was over by the record player, singing along.
"...the girl from Ipanema goes walking and when she passes, each one she passes goes...Ahhh!" I loved exaggerating the sigh. I could usually get at least one adult to laugh.
Recently I enjoyed an evening at the Brown Palace in Denver with old college friend, Martha.
A jazz quartet played in the Atrium and we left our martinis with our husbands.
Making a Request
The piano player of course knew the Grammy winning Brazilian bossa nova song. What a hoot, when he recognized Martha.
Last December, he spotted her (and her talent) in the audience during a holiday performance and invited her to sing White Christmas. The season was wrong, or I would have demanded a repeat performance. Instead we did a little dancing to my song request.
Another Hotel Bar
The very next night, Don and I stayed at The Armstrong in Fort Collins, CO.
The basement bar was hopping with a somewhat retro, cocktail lounge vibe. Once again, I was feeling like I'd stepped into that world of 1963-64.
Ace Gillet's Lounge
There was no saxophone in this trio, but the sound was smooth and sweet! I once again made my request. I didn't ham it up with a fake mic, but I did quietly sigh at the right part. It wasn't nearly as much fun without Martha, but I felt pretty delighted celebrating the song, 2 nights in a row!
When I was 6, I was happily entertained with any kind of ball. I was always eager to bounce an Indian rubber ball, a 4-square ball, a beach ball, or a jacks ball. I never thought about the idea of climbing inside a ball.
This morning, I gave it a try. I paid $10. to climb inside this "Tumble Bubble" on Maggie Pond, in Breckenridge. It was quite a trick getting my 60-year old self to stand and then run like a hamster. I managed to do a couple somersaults... without throwing up. I'm pretty sure I didn't last a full 10 minutes, before I pooped myself out. I will be sore for sure... especially my stomach muscles, from laughing!
Cottonwood Pass in Colorado
Yesterday, Don and I found quite a bit of snow when we climbed out of the car at Cottonwood Pass.
The wind was whipping as we climbed from 12,126 feet to 12,289. It was a short little hike, but we weren't dressed for a snow hike.
If I'd been 6, I would have whined the whole way up. Or maybe I would have asked Don to carry me. But I acted my age and made it high enough to enjoy a good view.
Time to Be 6!
Then it was time for a 6-year-old-snow-celebration. I took off my jacket and made a snow angel.
By the time we got down to the car, Don was acting like a 6 year old and threw a snowball at my head. All good fun!
Sharing Candy With a Friend
I can list about 20 candies that I used to love as a kid. Some candies I chose because I loved the way they tasted... Paydays and Bit-O-Honey. Other candies were just plain fun!
Candy cigarettes and candy necklaces are very non-tasty, but inspiring candies. I had some added inspiration recently, when I enjoyed these candies with my college friend, Martha. We hadn't seen each other since theatre conservatory days, nearly 40 years ago. We made use of those important acting skills and had some fun with our candy props... much to the amusement of our husbands.
Flowers in Breckenridge
I love walking down the streets in Breckenridge, Colorado and seeing the beautiful hanging baskets of flowers.
I also love the fact that you can find dandelions happily thriving in this perfectly manicured town. I saw a little girl carrying a bouquet as she walked down the sidewalk and she looked like me, at age 6.
When Don and I took a break on a hike the other day, I decided to rest and make a dandelion necklace.
I remember how clever I felt doing that as a little girl.
I wore my necklace for a little while, but then tossed back into the field. I only felt a little guilty about messing with nature on my hike. (Those seeds will grow new dandelions.) Plus, I was thinking like a 6 year old. We were always encouraged to pick dandelions in the yard!
First Visit as an Adult
I was a little older than 6 when my family went to Colorado and made the big drive up to Pikes Peak. Don and I returned for my second visit, just a couple days ago.
At the beginning of the drive I saw the sign for the North Pole and remembered how giddy I felt, when I spotted it over 50 years ago. We didn't take time to stop at the kiddie attraction, but maybe we should have. It was free to visitors 60 and over!
Back in the 1960's, I remember a light snow falling as our station wagon climbed the mountain. I don't remember feeling the cold when we got out. I was too excited.
But I'm 60 now, and when I got out of the car this time, I wanted to shriek from the cold wind. My flip flops did not keep my feet a bit warm. We ended up in the gift shop, warming up with hot chocolate and donuts. The snow covered window blocked our view.
Acting Up... Like a 6-Year-Old
I celebrated my recent peak visit, by posing behind a boulder. I didn't scream and yell "H-e-l-l-l-l-p!" the way I did years ago. I learned my lesson, when I tried that stunt years ago. Nobody thinks it's funny when you pretend to fall off a mountain.
Don and I eventually headed down the winding road after our visit and got stuck in some roadwork traffic. I had just enough time to jump out and pose with the snowbank along the road.
It's fun being 6 again!
When I was 6, I got to climb on a fire engine at a station in Manhattan. It was Christmas Eve and snowing. Mom and my 3 siblings had just left Macy's where we were killing time till Dad got off work. We passed the firehouse and heard a tapping on the window. The bored firemen, waved and invited us in for a visit. It's the last time I climbed on a big red truck.
A week ago, Don and I saw this vintage truck at the crossroads of US 70 and TX 70 in Matador, Texas. We were actually studying an odd gas station nearby, created to look like an oil derrick. We headed back towards the car and I thought, "If I were 6, I wouldn't just walk by that fire truck." So I hopped on for a moment. I may be 60, but I still like fire engines!
Where did the drive-ins go?
In the early '60's there were lots of drive-ins for burgers and ice cream. I remember on some, warm summer nights, my family would pile in the car and drive.
If we drove anywhere at all near the A&W, we 4 kids would start begging. Sometimes we lucked out and our station wagon pulled in. Frosty mugs would soon appear on a tray, hooked to our window!
A Summer Stop!
Since I'm 60 and not 6, I didn't have to wait for my dad to turn the wheel, yesterday. I was driving and I spotted the funny Dairy Treat drive-in. I've passed it in a million times, but this time I did a u-turn and parked.
Sadly no car service, but I marched happily up to the window and peered through the screen. "Do you have ice cream?" I asked. The sign was old and I couldn't assume.
Betty knew I was a new visitor. She's been there 38 years and had never seen me.
Without a moment's hesitation she turned and scooped me up a cone of vanilla. "You'll like this. No need to pay, you can pay next time you come!" She made me feel like a lucky little 6-year old, for sure. Thanks Betty!