This post is dedicated to the wonderfully inimitable Ms.Meghan Hicks, whose grocery store frustrations in Park City inspired the topic.
|Sugar Bowl Sunrise - photo by Andrew Pinkham|
1. Accept the weather. Most of the time in the winter, it’s gonna dump, at least if you live in the Sierra. Get your fat boards tuned. Get a Honda snowblower, a big shovel, and a strong back. When it doesn’t snow, remember how much you hate shoveling and go ice-skating. Summer? In Tahoe: 80 Degrees and sunny, every day. Count on it.
2. Use beer as currency. It may not get you everything, but it can go a surprisingly long ways. If you know the right people, you can pay with beer for most services – ski tuning, boot fitting, work on your house or car. You can also pay for most anything with ski comps (if you work at the resort and get comps in your paycheck) – things like haircuts, massages, yoga, etc. Always find out if people are willing to trade services, too. This saves everyone money!
3. Drive a Subaru. Well, you might drive a Tacoma, but just make sure your vehicle can handle the snow. Get snow tires. Don’t be that guy that shuts down the freeway because you had an accident. Don’t get yourself stuck on the unplowed streets of your neighborhood because, trust me, they will still be unplowed when it’s time to drive to work or the ski hill. Being stuck on a powder day fully sucks.
4. Don't think you're awesome. No matter how amazing your skills at skiing, snowboarding, mountain biking, kayaking, rock climbing, swimming, or running, there will always be people who can kick your butt. People with Olympic medals and huge sponsorship deals. Small town, big talent. Your ego may take a hit, but at least you’ll have no shortage of partners willing to join you on your crazy endeavors.
5. Shop at the thrift store. Did you know a lot of rich people live in resort towns? They get rid of stuff on a shockingly frequent basis – stuff they’ve barely worn. One summer I bought two incredible Ann Taylor dresses at the thrift store for a total of $7 and wore them both to weddings. Plus, thrift store shopping is Earth-friendly, and that’s how we like to roll.
6. Stay off the interstate in a snow storm. Because you can bet some idiot is breaking rule #3.
7. Tip big. You plan to come back to that bar/restaurant/hairstylist, don’t you? Make friends, and it will serve you well in the future. Karma, baby.
8. Talk small. Your “private” conversation is never private. Be nice, because someone is always listening – someone who either knows you or knows what you’re talking about.
9. Be a good dog owner. Adopt from the pound. Pick up after him. Take an obedience class. Don’t bring him to indoor parties. And don’t even tell me he’s part wolf. You’re full of it!
10. Don’t go to the grocery store on holidays or weekends. This one is very important. It will be so crowded, YOU WILL LOSE YOUR MIND! Once it took me 15 minutes to find a parking space at Safeway. Then I spent five minutes searching for a cart, but they were all being used – every last one! I finally helped someone unload her groceries into her car so I could have her cart. Needless to say, once I got inside the store, the experience only went downhill. Lesson learned. Now, if I run out of food between Christmas and New Years, I grocery shop at 6:00 am. Or I eat canned beans for dinner without complaint. (Don’t go to restaurants at these times either, by the way.)
And, my most important tip?
11. Don’t bitch. There are down sides to living in a resort town, definitely. But just remember: You live where other people come to vacation.