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Another Weekend in My Park City Bubble

I'm struggling with the country I live in. I live, work, and play in a Park City bubble where most, if not all of us, have similar political views and beliefs. We've had thousands of Sundance visitors in town that are also like-minded. We marched together last Saturday then watched movies while shaking our heads in disbelief at the daily acts coming from our new leader. Park City is growing too fast, but locals and newcomers get along and are always welcome. We aren't very diverse (yet), but new races, religions, and nationalities are embraced. Whether a Parkite or tourist, we are here to enjoy a life in the mountains. We worship nature, believe in climate change, and have the means to stand up for our rights and others. We don't run into many (if any) people at work, on the chair lift, or at restaurants that are pleased with our country's leadership and actions. I can't ignore what's happening outside my bubble. I have friends and coworkers that are no longer welcome, my mountains are under attack, and my stomach aches for the hate that is spreading across our country. I will continue to donate (today to the ACLU) and participate for those that can't.

In the meantime, I'll continue to live in my bubble and appreciate my mountains, friendships, and our diverse visitors. On Wednesday, I attended In Loco Parentis, transporting myself to Ireland and an international boarding school full of love and laughter. On Friday, we took a couple hours to walk Main Street and soak in the Sundance vibe. The bitter cold didn't stop large crowds from celebrating global diversity and creativity. Saturday and Sunday, we skied and although there are likely tourists with differing views, we didn't hear it on the chairlifts. Again, I'm struggling to think that there are people in our country and possibly, in Park City, that think the immigration ban is a humane act.

Sundance 2017 - Main Street
Locals getting into the action on Main Street

Saturday we hit the jackpot with chairlift interactions. First up Eagle, a young materials engineer from Atlanta, interviewing at Orbital ATK in hopes to use his skills in the space industry yet ski/bike on the weekends. Then, our second ride of the day up King Con, we rolled into the corral with our old neighbor Bill and his son. Wow, twice in one ski season. We talked about snow levels, the recent house fire, and freezing pipes at 7000ft.

On our third ride up Silverlode, we loaded on either side of an older couple. I talked to June, while Terry talked to her husband and quickly realized we live in the same neighborhood and go by their house every day. They are in their 70's and had their carvers on for the groomers, after spending all week in the powder. June works at Deer Valley and they have season passes, but her husband prefers Park City. He still has a company and enjoys doing stained glass work in his spare time. We talked more after unloading then said our goodbyes promising to say hello in the neighborhood.

The fourth ride was our best interaction of the day. We loaded and started sharing with each other what we'd learned from the previous couple. We could imagine skiing at 75 but not running a company. Immediately, the couple on our lift spoke up and told us they were 80 and 81 and skied every day. They were not going to be outdone by the 70 year olds. They told us their life story and then we followed them through the bowling alley and were very impressed with their speed and ability. They ski every morning, then leave when the crowds get crazy to avoid injury. We have new octogenarian role models and proof that we have 40 more years of skiing in us!

They live in Green Bay and were both teachers plus had a Christmas Tree Farm. He taught Social Studies, she had the "snowball in hell" combo of PE and Biology (her terminology). She swims everyday back home and they both were spunky. They have an 87 year old friend in Deer Valley, also from Wisconsin, that invites them out for the winter so they can ski and keep each other company. It started as a long weekend trip years ago and gradually moved to a three month visit. They were such a fun couple to listen to and the ride went too fast. They've experienced so much in their lives and influenced so many people through their teaching. I can't imagine growing up in the 40's. I wish I would have had the time to get their thoughts on our leadership and the last week of activity.

We skied with friends today from our bubble, so plenty of in-depth conversations about politics, Sundance, and cycling on the lift rides.

Gorgeous day yet can't stop thinking about people on those planes that are no longer welcome...


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