Mobile Writing Retreat - Day 7 (Denver)

EDITOR’S NOTE: Pop asked for location information in the heading to aid the “old people” reading. I guess he couldn’t remember what day I was on after I fell behind on posts. So, two things. First, Location information included. Second, As the trip is winding down now, I’m planning a morning and evening post every day until the whole trip is documented.

The productivity of the prior two days in Colorado did not continue into Denver. I ventured from the hotel to a local coffee shop for breakfast and to update the blog. After that, I felt like I needed a change of scenery and moved to yet another local brewery (I’m telling you, they are everywhere now) for lunch. This one was named for former Sheriff Ned Wynkoop, who was apparently known to always be in possession of three things: a bowie knife, a revolver, and a cold beer. Rumor has it he still has an outstanding bar tab of $157 (not sure if that includes 100+ years of interest or not...).

I had intended to write there, but one thing I have learned on this cross-country trek is that productivity often is dictated by the longevity of one’s laptop battery. With no outlets in sight at the end of my lunch and second pint, it was time to wander. I had hoped to explore the U.S. Mint, as there are only 4 active coin-producing locations in the country. Trivia time. Can you name them? As a hint, they are signified on coins by a single letter (i.e., a min mark). Sadly, they are closed on Sunday.


So, I kept wandering to the collection of art museums, deciding to take in the one dedicated to Clyfford Still, considered by many as the pioneer of the Abstract Expressionist movement. Strangely, other than a summer teaching at UD Boulder, he had no ties to Colorado. It wasn’t quite clear how they landed his collection, but it was interesting to see a gallery of this size dedicated to a single artist – a requirement of Still’s beginning later in his career to better see how the different pieces fit together. An added benefit was the chance to see how his work changed drastically over his lifetime. I am partial to his earlier works (like the one pictured below).


I didn’t realize it until later, but my meanderings had taken my down the “Wall Street of the Rockies,” as 17th apparently has been dubbed. According to a medallion in the sidewalk, the Silver Panic of 1893 nearly crippled it, but gold from the Cripple Creek mines ushered in a new era of prosperity. Flush with gold, they decided to flaunt their riches by replacing the copper top of the State Capitol with gold leaf in 1908.


As the day wound town, I settled in at Union Station, which has to be one of the nicest train stations in the country. The top floors consist of hotel rooms, while the station floor has a number of trendy spots for coffee, food, and beverages. It could’ve been a great place to work, but again, without any battery power or an outlet near an available table, productivity was inhibited. So, I accepted that the word count wouldn’t move, because by the time I got on board it would be time for dinner (which was with some great people from Iowa) and then bed.