As some of you already know, I live in a small ski town with a population of about 7500. On busy Holiday weekends we can have a pop. of about 40,000 so it makes for some interesting times, many of them frustrating. Such as, we only have one market in town. Usually there is no problem getting what you need, however on a winter weekend you try not to go at all. There will be crowds of people from out of town that don't understand why there is no bread... I mean the shelves are bare. No Milk! No Eggs! People freak out. Oh... and the parking lot... if it is stormy and snowy than there will be a bunch of sports cars without chains, stuck. There will be angry people in fur coats and matching hats saying "can you @#$!ing believe this?". I mean do they think this is Disneyland?
If you are a local and you don't HAVE to go out... you don't.
However there is one night that everyone goes out... The Night of Lights.
There are huge crowds but for the most part people are just having fun, full of Christmas Spirit or maybe "spirits". You just have to try and ignore the rest.
The Night of Lights is a winter light show that takes place right on the ski slopes. Last year they had paratroopers drop onto the slope, their suits were trimmed in lights. The ski patrolmen deck out their snowmobiles with lights and even the Snow Cats are lit up. Skiers and snowboarders slide down the slope in different formations with lights of course. Everyone looks forward to the moment when Santa rides up on his SnoMo, but my favorite part is the chair lifts. You see, they put lights on the seats of the chair lifts. You can see it start at the top of the mountain. One light, then two... snakes of lights trailing down the slopes until they loop around and all the seats have a light. Colorful loops of moving lights! Awesome. The light reflects off of the white snow and makes the mountain look like a giant multi colored snow cone. So much fun.
Last year something extra special happened. When the show ended we started making our way to the Gondola which would take us back down into town. The lines were very long and our toes and noses were extremely cold but we were having a terrific time. At last we were put into a Gondola car with a family of about 10, I think. They were tourists from Florida and the kids were having a blast, they were lovin' the snow, the strangeness of it all. As the Gondola car dropped out of the dock and swooped into the dark night the Floridians began to settle down and put their cellphones away. Then something wonderful happened. We were sailing over a part of town that has some very fancy houses and it seemed that at least every other home was having a gathering. Through the windows,we could see Christmas trees festively lit and families enjoying each other. The only sound in our car was the creaking of the cable above. Our very own glass elevator filled with Peace and Joy, that's what we had. Then breaking the silence was a small voice singing "Let it Snow, Let it Snow... Let it Snow"!
So the next time I am in the Market, Post Office... whatever and I am getting peeved about someone who "just doesn't get it", I am going to try and remember that little boy from Florida. Who cares if we can't buy Milk or bread, we have Snow.