Snow Sunday: Making a Plan–The Telluride Way

Snow Sunday: Making a Plan–The Telluride Way

IMG_0487I’m the first to admit it. Telluride can be flakey. There doesn’t seem to be a grand urgency to return emails, texts or even answer phone calls. People view requests to RSVP as optional and even impossible. After all, how will they know what they are doing next Friday night, until, well, next Friday night?

I have both complained about friends or colleagues who have committed any of the aforementioned acts, and I have been complicit in committing all of them myself.

Perhaps this behavior is due to the noncommittal nature of the town; perhaps it is simply the fallout of an entire community living in the present. Or, perhaps, it’s because, in more cases than not, you’re going to run into the person with whom you need to communicate even quicker than you can return a text or email. Okay maybe not quicker, but eventually.

I vividly remember sitting in an office a few years ago, trying to contact ten or so individuals for the organization for which I was working. Day after day, I would call, leave a message and wait for a response. Finally, one afternoon, I decided to walk to the Butcher and Baker at the end of town for an afternoon sugar and caffeine kick. En route, I ran into three of the people I had been trying to contact. At the bakery, I ran into another two. It was the most productive hour of the week.

IMG_1318Some of my greatest adventures have been hatched at preschool drop off. From 8:00 to 8:30 am, Columbia Street and Main Street are full of parents hauling kids to school behind their bikes, on their own bikes or by foot. Passing a friend on the morning commute one day a few summers back, I yelled, “Want to go for a quick bike ride?”

“No, Via Ferrata?” she yelled back at me over her shoulder. Within an hour of dropping off our kids, we were dangling on the iron route a few thousand feet above the mine at the end of town. “This sure beats cleaning the house and changing diapers,” she mused as she continued to traverse the ridge.

In the winter, ski team drop off is even more fruitful. Just a few weeks ago, before heading out the door, I texted a few friends suggesting that they bring their backpacks. We met at the ski club at the top of the Gondola to drop our kids with their coaches at 9:30. We looked at the conditions, nodded in agreement and did the only logical thing—Palmyra. Another friend caught wind of the plan and joined right in.

IMG_1686Could Telluride be the last frontier where face-to-face communication is actually more effective than digital? Where Main Street is a better status update than a Facebook feed, a coffee break can be more productive than a phone call, and dropping your kid off allows for greater social options than Evite?

Telluride may be flakey when it comes to texts and emails. I’ll give you that. And, yes, perhaps we can learn about promptness and punctuality from the rest of the world. But, perhaps, the rest of the world can learn something from us too.
















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