22 Jun 2017

Guilty Pleasure


Road warriors are typically united in their poo-pooing the “glamor of travel” so often uttered by those who travel infrequently.  The grind of hotels, car rentals, airport security, crowded flights and uneven hours take a toll.

But even the most jaundiced traveler takes pleasure in the posh way stations along the way.  And one in particular is never a hardship – The Broadmoor in Colorado Springs, Colorado.  Not only is it a singular Rocky Mountain oasis, it is in the Policysmith’s backyard, a mere 70-minute drive.

One retailer on the circuit has a strong attraction – the confectioner in the Broadmoor has a variety of ice creams that redefine decadent.  A sundae loaded with pecans, sprinkles and all the rest, taken out to a patio chair in the sun takes this traveler back to a simpler time…

You can almost hear the bells of the Good Humor truck as it makes its way slowly down the tree-lined streets in your town.  The neighborhood kids gather around for a popsicle to split, or the more well off kids got their own whole toasted almond or a chocolate cake bar to hustle home and eat on the front porch.

It seemed like every couple of blocks a corner soda fountain had a freezer with all the favorites of the day – a push-up of orange sherbet, a fudgsicle, a creamsicle – each 6 cents, a popsicle in cherry, grape or sky-blue (skip the banana, YUCK!) — 8 cents, and if you were flush you could get a dixie cup –10 cents.  The treat was so ubiquitous a Motown girl group took the name and their hit “Chapel of Love” to Number 1 on the pop music charts in the 1960s.

The memories ascend, surfacing from the distant mists of time at the Haagen-Dazs store in Jackson, Wyoming, at the Johnny Rockets in Laguna Beach, California and even the Baskin-Robbins 31 Flavors in Santa Fe.  One even gets the flash of nostalgia at an A&W when the root beer float arrives.  You probably did a parent/child thing as we did — walking the streets of your town and stopping for “I-sheem” – one of the universals of parenting.

Recently at a business meeting at the Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego, a shop in the hotel had a chocolate shake that was the exact replica of the ones enjoyed after little league baseball games on the bike ride home.  Two of us would stop at Thompson’s Ice Cream in suburban Chicago, milk shake – 32 cents, malt – 38 cents.  The lazy ride home with that thick, chocolaty wonder was the best of boyhood.

On Capitol Hill in Washington, DC about the best one can do is the vending machine in the Longworth cafeteria – at least you can get a Nestle’s Crunch ice cream bar or an ice cream sandwich.  Generally that will be the highlight of any visit to the Hill…a rare bright spot and welcome break in the drudge of meetings with members and staffers.

If you’ve traveled to Denver, and you need that boost that’s only found at an ice cream shop, here’s the inside scoop (sheesh!) – Bonnie Brae Ice Cream is not far from Cherry Creek and is reachable from downtown.  Exceptional homemade recipes – there might be a line out the door – but it’s well worth the time and trouble.  Sit on a bench outside and relieve the travel drag with a reverie on the sweets of your childhood – it will excise some of the monotony, the exhaustion and wear of travel.

Ice cream, a guilty pleasure certainly – but a treasured memory and a panacea in every lick as well.

6 Responses to Guilty Pleasure
  1. I just enjoyed an entire summer as I relieved countless summers through your muse. Bravo to the “Good Humor Man!”

  2. Thank you for the wonderful post

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