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Day 9 – Denver & Boulder – By Sebastian Biondi

Today, we started off the morning with a discussion about education reform led by Deborah. We talked about the overall pros and cons of teachers going on strike, earning tenures, and our opinions on what the qualities of a good teacher are. Everyone had a story or experience to share about their own teachers.

Next, after driving past Columbine High School, Billy explained a brief history of the Beatniks. Their overall culture, beliefs, and way of life consisted of jazz, writing, and spending time traveling “On The Road.”

We visited the relatively new Columbine Memorial. It was an emotional and thought-provoking experience for almost all in attendance and gave us some time to reflect on how security in schools were put into place after that fateful day on April 20th at Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado.

We then stopped at Sweet Tomatoes: The Salad Buffet Restaurant for lunch and enjoyed the time to eat and  decompress after the discussion at the Columbine Memorial.

After that, we left Littleton and headed to Boulder, where we visited Naropa University, the only Buddhist College in America. The campus was beautiful. We met briefly with Anne Waldman who recited some of her very own beatnik poetry. Additionally, Steven Taylor, a friend of Beatnik Allen Ginsberg, told an in depth story of the Beatnik movement and its influence on modern-day society.

We all did Yoga together on the campus. It was a very relaxing, peaceful, and tranquil experience. There was a sense of calmness.