From Sea Level column: First impressions by new Vail Daily intern | VailDaily.com

From Sea Level column: First impressions by new Vail Daily intern

Lindsay Bribiescas
From Sea Level

Editor’s note: This is the first column by Vail Daily intern Lindsay Bribiescas, who is in town from UCLA for the summer.

On Monday, June 19, I got off the highway after almost seven hours of driving and immediately hit maybe the third roundabout I’ve ever driven in. I immediately became that person at the roundabout, who’s in the wrong lane and going the right speed to annoy everyone else.

I moved to the Vail Valley to intern at the Vail Daily, where I wasn’t entirely sure what I would be doing. As it turns out, my responsibilities at the Daily include writing stories, photographing events, managing some of the social media, helping out with some video stuff and now writing this blog. I even got to take control of the Daily’s Snapchat.

I came here from California, where I was born and raised in the Bay Area and moved to University of California, Los Angeles for college. In my life so far, I’ve worked for my high school and college papers, studied abroad in Scotland and never learned how to drive in a roundabout.

But I think I’m beginning to get the hang of Vail, with plenty of help from pretty much everyone I’ve met while here. The people here are almost too nice, but the only real threat is their attempts to get me out hiking with them. Everyone here understands that they live in a gorgeous place and are all eager to share it.

There are so many events going on and things to do that recommendations alone take 20 minutes. However, I did find my way to the Flight Days in Eagle, where people get so into their competitions that children dress to match their dogs for the lookalike contest and babies dress like superheroes.

from farmers markets to hiking

The community is more tight-knit than anywhere else I’ve been. The farmers market in Vail is busier than any other market of its kind I’ve been to and with more interesting food — we don’t have beaver taters back home. Beyond the size of it, the wide variety of people at the market is astounding, but even then it maintains an appreciable small-town vibe. And it really is small-town. While at the market, I ran into two of my co-workers. Going out with my newfound friends pretty much anywhere is an opportunity to meet new people, since we’re bound to run into at least of couple of their friends.

The craziest thing to me, though, is how active people are here. On my first hike, where I was practically crawling up the mountain (I’m blaming it on the altitude), there were 70-year-olds basically sprinting up the trail. And at the grocery store, the produce section is always filled to the brim with people looking at greens. You would think, coming from California, that I would be used to a good amount of health-conscious people, but Santa Rosa — my hometown — isn’t 8,000 feet in the air.

And I think it’s infectious — I’m already eager to hit another trail. I also found myself hunting for smoothie supplements, which made me question how the air up here is affecting me.

Whether it’s the elevation, or the people, or even the adrenaline rush from getting a roundabout right, I think I’m going to be very happy here in the Vail Valley this summer.

Lindsay Bribiescas is interning at the Vail Daily this summer. She is currently attending college at UCLA and calls Santa Rosa, California, home. Contact her at lindsay@vaildaily.com.