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Not long ago, Canvas co-ringleader Ruby Tuesday “outed” herself and mentioned that she lives in the Denver area. As it happened, I had a trip to Denver planned already, with a whole extra day free (a very rare occurrence.) Spending it with Ruby was the obvious answer to the question of how to entertain myself. We plotted over email and made hesitant let’s-not-make-each-other-uncomfortable plans.

While I waited for her to arrive at my hotel, I tried to guess what color car she would be driving. Red seemed much too apropos. Maybe that weird beige-gold color? Nope. Light blue, and I knew it was her when she pulled in, but waited to approach until we confirmed via text message (across the parking lot) because wouldn’t it be weird to walk up to someone and say, “Hey, are you my crazy blogger friend?” Yes, that would be awkward.

But there wasn’t a moment of awkwardness with Ruby. I wasn’t at all surprised to see her adorned with big glamorous sunglasses, a really cute sundress, super sexy spiky heels, and the big bag. In fact, she looked pretty much exactly as I expected. We’re almost complete opposites in physical appearance, but boy were our brains frighteningly coordinated. We finished each others’ sentences and kept saying the same thing at the same time, all day long. It was as though we’d known each other for ages already, and indeed we have, after a fashion.

We barely stopped talking long enough to order a late breakfast nosh. My bagel had green chiles, because I love them so much that I want to eat them all. No, that’s not an important detail, but I really love green chiles. After some nonstop talking (I totally lost track of time) we decided it was time to actually “do” something with the day. Ruby had the simply brilliant suggestion of the Denver Museum of Nature & Science. I love nature and science (not Nature and Science) even more than green chiles!

Well, the good times just kept on rolling. Ruby humored me by touring the cases of birds while we talked about everything under the sun, including birds. It was really cool to see species that I’ve only seen in books or on TV. And Ruby didn’t seem to mind my gushing enthusiasm about the silly winged things. I swear, it’s become an obsession, but Mr. Chickadee says it’s healthy because watching birds makes me slow down and be more mindful. 😀

After the birds, we also looked at carvings of typical Russian folk themes made entirely of semi-precious stones. I liked how the bodies were actually shaped like real bodies of real people, but still seemed so attractive. Perhaps big saggy boobs and a half-flat butt look best when shaped of stone rather than cellulite…

The health exploration corner was the last stop on our tour of exhibits. We each got personal metrics printouts after having our heights and walking speeds measured by digital cameras, and riding on stationary bikes around a virtual track. We both made our way successfully around the climbing wall. Then Ruby turned around and did it in 4″ heels! OK, well, not the whole wall, but seriously – climbing wall + spiky heels = freaking amazing.

We put on white lab coats and purple latex gloves and made slides of our cheek cells, still talking pretty much nonstop, and then it was Food Time. As in, my brain no longer works and if I don’t eat something soon I’m going to get panicky. Unfortunately, it was also about 2:30 and the museum cafe was closed, so we munched a few snack items (enough to head off the impending apocalypse), talked about psychoactive medications, and decided we’d get real food a little later.

OK, so my self-anonymization leaves something to be desired. I hope it’s not too creepy, but if it is, just focus on the smiles and blue tongues!

And then there was the Genetics of Taste study. I was worried that participating would trigger paranoia (they did weigh us, after all) or that we’d be disqualified due to the copious pharmacopoeia that fills our purses and bodies. But my worries were unfounded and it turned out that we both taste bitterness pretty strongly. Our tongues stayed blue a lot longer than the 20 minutes that we were told the dye would last. It looked like we’d been sucking on blue raspberry candies all day long.

On our way out of the museum, we paused in the gift shop; Ruby picked out a necklace that matched her dress – pearly and purpley. I bought a teeny tiny $0.79 T-Rex and a Scrabble tile pendant necklace. It has a (Great Horned) owl decoupaged on the “wrong” side, but the Scrabble side of the tile was – get this – D2! I was highly amused by this coincidence.

After that, we took a semi-scenic route to Golden for a delicious dinner. I got to see prairie dog colonies on the way, and learned that Denver traffic sucks a lot worse than Detroit traffic. Which meant the Talking GPS Lady was continually “recomputing based on traffic” and then coming up with completely absurd routes. It was nice to just sit back and chill out, talking with Ruby about anything and everything, and in fact more than I feel free to talk about with most of my friends. We seriously did not stop talking for more than a moment at any point during the day. It was a blast. Dinner was fantastic – fiery cheese and chiles rellenos!

Then lack of sleep caught up with us pretty much at the same time. Exhaustion hit me in the face like a bulldozer. As is typical when I travel, I hadn’t been sleeping much (about 6 hours total for the two prior nights) and Ruby also hadn’t gotten many winks. It was time to call it a day anyway, and at that point we were actually quite close to my hotel, so she dropped me off and we made our farewells. Farewell for now, anyway, because I can’t imagine we won’t meet up again.

I figured we’d have a great time, and Ruby proved me right. We had an awesome day. Ruby was almost exactly as I had imagined her, which means she’s a really good writer (as we all know) to plant such imaginings in my brain, and a pretty awesome person, because I have a mostly flattering imagination. We got on so well that it was more like catching up with a friend I hadn’t seen in years than meeting a friend for the first time in person. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

*Note: “One Fine Day” refers to a nice tune by Brian Eno and David Byrne. Just so you know that it’s not a random title.

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