Wednesday, January 9, 2008
Most people don't realize the two different worlds going on at the Steamboat Ski Area this year. On one side of the gondola are a couple of thousand brightly colored skiers of all ages, shapes, sizes and nationalities. Some on skis, some on boards, and some on their bottoms more than any other sliding surface. And, unfortunately, even some on crutches. The little children, as always, are absolutely adorable. None of whom I have noticed to be crying about falling down, getting snow in their gloves, up their sleeves, down their necks and in their beautiful, smiling faces. They are loving the snow as are all the others who are here due to the glorious white stuff. The more they get, the happier they are. Play, play, play until starving or exhausted and most of the time completely oblivious to the other side of the coin just a few yards away from their playground.
Hard hats, safety vests, all sorts and sizes of machinery and men - and yes, a couple of women - "playing" in the dirt right along with them. Where the "players" (skiers) are loving the cold and snow, it's just plain in the way for these guys who are working Monday through Friday, from May until now, far away from their families, moving the snow so they can unfreeze the dirt, to dig it out, to set cement, pipe, rebar and all sorts of other "fun" stuff to produce more parking and rooms for the "players" who don't have to work in the cold snow to enjoy their families.
Do they know one another exist? Of course. Does one think about the other? Not usually, except to get a glimpse of one another while the players are walking down the "safety path" set up by the workers so they can get between their condos and the slopes. Are the workers thanked by the players, ever, for what they are doing or for the safety path? I don't think so.
I have noticed their impatience when the workers get in their way while doing their jobs. Shouldn't we all be more patient and appreciative of those who are "in our way" working to help make our lives easier and better down the road? Or is it OK to be inconvenienced by the fact that they can't drive their Hummers right up to the slope this year so their spoiled kids don't have to walk two blocks to get there. "They might get sick, you know." These are probably the same kids who can't walk two to six blocks to school and whose parents yell obscenities at bus drivers because they are in the bus lane at school and are asked to move so 40 other students can get to their schools on time.
I wonder why young people these days don't have any respect? Everyone who enjoys the slopes at Steamboat needs to be thankful for the constant thoughts of making sure all of you are safe as you walk back and forth past these construction workers who are there to give you more spaces with easier access in a couple of years.