Saturday, 26 October 2013

The Time We Lived In A Snow Globe Town (Part 1)

Almost two years ago, I was lucky enough to live in a snow globe town for a few months. Before I go any further, I want you to image the following: a snow globe with swirling white pieces flying everywhere, glittering lights shining out of beautiful buildings and huge evergreen trees dotted around everywhere. Got a picture in your mind? Good. Now take a look at the pictures below:

Vail Village
Vail Town - View From One Of The Resturaunts
Heated path in Vail
The heated pathway, (yes, you read right. In case you missed it the
first time HEATED PATHWAY!!!) into Vail Town. The Four Seasons
Hotel Baby Bear is on the bottom left.
It all started in 3rd year when I started saving all my tutoring money for an overseas working holiday before entering the working world. At the beginning of 4th year a friend recommended Vail and so our preparations began. I started getting in touch with friends who would be keen, researching travelling companies (we chose CCUSA) and then e-mailing companies to see if they would be willing to hire a bunch of South Africans. Myself, Frosty, Russell, Jono and Kimon were lucky enough to get hired by the Four Seasons Hotel Chain for their Vail hotel and thus, on the evening of the 16th December 2011 we found ourselves starting off life in Vail.

During one evening stroll back from a dinner quite late into the season, one of our American colleagues, Chris, mentioned that living in Vail felt like living in a snow globe - which is the perfect description for the town and way of life. His description has stuck with me vividly and I now when I think of Vail, I always remember it as a snow globe town.

Here are some reasons that living in Vail felt like living in a snow globe.

  • There's no traffic allowed through the town, so to get anywhere you either walk or take one of the free Vail buses, if you need to go slightly further. 
  • All the town buildings are beautifully maintained and in part of the town, the side walks are heated to allow you to walk easily from the big hotels into town itself.
  • Everything is close together.
  • There are amazing ice sculptures, metal sculptures and brightly lit trees everywhere you look.
  • The buildings are continually covered by a blanket of snow.
  • You can walk around in the middle of the night and feel completely safe.
  • Vail is far from cities and so you feel slightly removed from the harsh realities of life.

Vail began as a dream for a ski resort in the late 1950s and by 1962 Vail opened for it's first skiing season. Since then, it's become a skiing mecca over the winter months and during the summer months it offers a wide variety of adventure sports and activities. I've only ever seen the wintery side of Vail, but I would love to return and see the summery side of Vail as well!

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