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  • Writer's pictureLauren Wong

red rocks fcked me up on a spiritual level

Updated: Feb 4, 2022

ok, I’ll admit this post is a week+ behind. in fact, I am right now sitting at my hostel in Boston on day 3 of my east coast trip (the northeastern leg). I probably should be posting about the last few days BUT, I feel like I really need to revisit this moment for a minute cause of what a huge turning point it was.

not being able to stay in one place isn't a new thing for me. pre-covid it was pretty common for me to jettison off for the weekend or be out and about. even since being back from TW I’ve been on a healthy amount of weekend trips. hell, sometimes I’d extend them a bit into Friday or Monday to score the cheaper flight - especially if I was visiting a friend who was cool with crashing. However, with this Denver trip it was different. this was probably my first trip going during the middle of the week. although it doesn't look it, I put a LOT of thought into it. Would I be able to perform in work the same way? how could I ensure I was still being productive? what do I do about the time difference? this was one of the first things I addressed cause even if I don't see this job as long term, I still want to pull my weight, learn, and succeed (on my terms). So yeah, I actually gave it a LOT of thought. I scheduled early on the hours I’d work, my workout time, meetings etc. in short, I prioritized. I got a portable screen for less than 200$, which turned out to be such a great investment! with those bases covered, I did research and made a list of things I wanted to see, do, and eat and scheduled them into the free hours. with this approach I was able to hit it all + more!

so, the whole reason I had gone to Denver - let's also take a second to cherish that moment! So, I had gone to Denver for…RED ROCKS. For those who don’t know about red rocks, it’s this LEGENDARY outdoor concert amphitheater that’s made of…you guessed it…RED ROCKS. It’s smack dab as nature as you get…including a 30–45-minute drive from downtown Denver! But the experience. WOW. This was one of the top things on my bucket list and it did not disappoint. And I’m so glad I went for Alison Wonderland. I knew it had to be an artist that was special to me and Alison Wonderland killed it. Her whole set had me on my toes and I legit felt like I was on a different level (to clarify: no hard drugs were taken). Besides Alison Wonderland putting on such a memorable passionate set I also met such cool people! Each person I met was such a huge Alison Wonderland fan traveling across the whole damn country just to see her perform. It was a very powerful and communal feeling knowing that we were all here together for the same reason. From the people I met at the hostel (Brett, the nice raver nurse guy), to the shuttle (Siaki, a fellow solo traveler who is boss about going to EDM shows and does not care for nature, the dad and his kid traveling to various national parks), and to what ended up being the group Siaki and I hung out with at the venue (Florida queers uniteeeee!) – I can’t get over how it was not only worth it but a key moment of my life. It went beyond successfully handling work, seeing Alison Wonderland at Red Rocks, and checking out the local area; I was also able to feel connected to myself, nature, and other people! It’s so hard for me to put into words how almost every experience was so rewarding. I’m thinking about how something as simple as running – I was able to see cool art murals in the RINO District, biking after work down Cherry Creek Trail, or visiting the Speakeasy, having that one overpriced specialty drink and good conversation with the bartender after a long day, of all places, felt so comforting, and even the hostel I stayed at (I still can’t get over what a unique experience it was being an old brothel building and all with a hipster bar set up; it surprisingly, was a pretty awesome hostel – especially for America), taking a few minutes out of my day to hear their story and share mine.

It was these little moments of Denver that made me feel alive. And I realized how much happier I was. I was still putting in work (if not working harder cause now the time crunch plus being able to do what I loved meant it was worth putting a bit of my heart into work) but I was also doing something that energized me by traveling. After a few weeks of feeling lost and disconnected it was exactly what I needed to set my intentions for these next few months. Denver/Red Rocks was the start of this journey. Knowing that I put even more effort in work (delivering) one of my best deliverables, but also feeling fulfilled by traveling. y’all I’m living the dream. Can’t wait to come back to Denver again – next time hoping to hit up more of the nature/national parks!

So happy to be on this journey. I’ll provide an update on the east coast trip in a post soon. I’m a little nervous given that tomorrow is Monday and my second time working on the weekdays while traveling but I’m hopeful. I’m having an amazing time. 😊

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