If you live in Fort Collins, I am sure you spent some time on a patio this weekend. It was beautiful, warm, sunny and most importantly there was no wind. I hate wind, and we get our fair share here since we live so close to Wyoming and they pretty much blow. Most people in Fort Collins must not like wind either. Two weekends ago it was warm and sunny, but not beautiful because it was windy. No one was out. I went through Old Town Square on my run because it was so deserted. This weekend, the square was packed. Science Toy Magic guy was out slinging plastic worms 30 feet into the air while riding a unicycle. Kids and their parents were hula hooping and blowing bubbles on the stage. Dogs were jumping in the fountain. Both the patios and the bike racks were over flowing. Spring had arrived.
We ended up lucking out and finding a good table on the patio at Beau Jo’s. We had a dog with us, so our seating options were limited since we needed to be next to a fence. We also so happened to be sitting right next to the stair case where a 5 year old I used to nanny asked me “who was that old man in the suit telling me not to be afraid?” while we were on a historic haunted tour with our families last fall, but that’s a whole different post. We ordered our beers, 2 Easy’s and 2 Dig’s. Surprisingly, Alyse hadn’t had Dig, New Belgium’s spring seasonal yet! I must say, it is much better on a sunny patio. The first time I tried Dig is was snowing out, and I was hoping if I closed my eyes I could pretend it was spring. It didn’t work. It’s too heavy for me to be considered a pale ale, and something about the hops they use in their seasonal releases rubs my tongue wrong, the same way Snow Day did.
To top off our brews, a random string band assembled on the cement riser near our patio and played a few bluegrass tunes. I mean, this is Fort Collins after all, I was wondering when a band would show up! Now, you can say that this has been a perfect day in the Fort, but you’d be wrong. It is only 4pm and it’s not over yet. My friend Rachel called and I met her in the square, and we walked to New Belgium. The patio gods must love me, because we scored seats at a table in the very crowded patio, next to some gentleman visiting from Germany. I drank my Prickly Passion Saison and Rachel stuck with her favorite, Cocoa Mole. We discussed the beer culture and night life in our “hamlet town”, as they kept referring to it. They offered to buy us another round, but we were there for a mission, to fill a couple growlers for the years first cook out.
Rachel’s friend Neil met us with brat’s from Canino’s, and I snagged some potato salad from The Fort Collins Food Co-op on our walk back to Rachel’s. We sat on her patio, drinking beer, eating brats and talking with Neil’s friend Vanessa who had only moved to Fort Collins that day. While we all went around telling stories and reassuring her she would love it here, I just had to reflect on what an amazing day it had been, and how completely unique to Fort Collins it was. Every where I went, everything I drank, everything I ate and everything I experienced was uniquely Fort Collins.