A Taste of Laramie

Before I headed to South Dakota for my grandfather's funeral and the madness that ensues when more than 80 of his immediate family get together to celebrate his life (and yes, that was just his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren and some of the kids' and grandkids' respective spouses—I didn't even count grandpa's sisters and their families in that number), I spent a couple of days in Laramie, Wyoming.

It's not the town in which I grew up, but it's where my parents live now. And it's a great place to visit—it's near the mountains, it's close to Denver, it has tons of Western spirit and Wyoming personality, and it happens to be the only town in Wyoming that's home to a university (the University of Wyoming, of course). Plus it even has stoplights, which isn't the case in a whole lot of towns in Wyoming.

The ride to Laramie was a bit rough (with five people crammed in a not-so-big convertible), but the Indian tacos we ate in Hot Springs, South Dakota, and the wildlife we saw along the way more than made up for it. Horses, cattle, deer, antelope, elk. Yep, must be back in Wyoming.

(There were even a few moose wandering around in Laramie while I was there. But I didn't come across one, unfortunately.)

While in Laramie, we worked and relaxed and drank a lot of wine. Particularly at the new wine bar/art gallery in town.

The owner has quite a lot of personality, to say the least. Case in point: The password to get upstairs to the dance floor on Friday night was "Barney Fife." And this sign was painted on the storage room door behind the table where we enjoyed our wine:

Upstairs, there's a fantastic lounge and dance floor. The perfect place to throw a party. My Mom made a point of mentioning that—numerous times. Apparently, she thinks I may need to throw a big party in the near future. Not sure where she gets ideas like that ...

I also caught up with high school friends and learned all about beverages such as Moscow Mules (vodka, ginger beer, and lime, which you drink out of icy cold copper cups) and Poppers (vodka, Clamato, and banana peppers—yum).

Of course, a stop at Bart's Flea Market was required too. I love Bart's. It's one of those places you have to see to appreciate—overloaded with a mixture of treasures, junk, and truly random crap. And two Pyrex serving dishes, which I gleefully purchased for a third of the price they cost at other thrift stores and flea markets. This is why I love Wyoming.

We also went hiking, which was probably the highlight of the Laramie trip. You'll understand why when you see the photos. But I'm saving that story for the next post, so you'll just have to return later.

(Is it mean that I disappear for almost a week and then leave you hanging? Maybe so. But I'm feeling mischievous this morning. And apparently a bit bleary-eyed, because I just spent a good minute trying to figure out how the heck to spell "mischievous.")


kristin said...

We LOVE Moscow Mules. After searching endlessly for copper mugs, we broke down and bought a set of six on amazon. It was so worth it. Mmm, I might have to fix one this afternoon.

Julie said...

Moscow Mules are terrific. And definitely best served out of copper mugs. I might have to find some myself now ...