How many days ya got?
VAIL – With a new baby and a new wife, it’s been a pretty good year for Michael Rodey- except for the skiing, that is.It’s not that he doesn’t enjoy it anymore, and the slopes have been looking pretty good lately, he said. It’s just that his numbers are slipping.”I’ve only been up like 15 times this year, and that’s ridiculous,” Rodey said while waiting for the ECO bus to Vail. “I’ve always been in the 100 club, and I’m not going to be close to making it this year. It changes when you get a kid.”So now, instead of skiing in his spare time, he’s changing diapers and speaking gibberish. He gets away on weekends sometimes, but usually, he’d rather be playing with his son.
“When he’s old enough to ski, I’ll get my numbers back up,” Rodey said.It’s quite common for diehard skiers to keep track of their “days,” or how many times they’ve gone skiing in a season. When you ask someone how many days they have compared to years past, you realize how much life can change in just a few months. Sure, it could be a function of snowfall and the number of good powder days, but for many people, it’s a matter of life catching up with them.”I used to drive in from Denver every week, I never missed, and if it wasn’t Vail, it was somewhere else,” James Patterson said. “I’m just working more now than I used to and I’m too tired on Saturdays. I’m just a tired old man, and I’m only 30.”For Minnie Suwold, life changed when she and her husband moved from Vail to Eagle when they found a bigger home for the right price.”We may not go quite as much, but we’re still big on it,” Suwold said. “We’ve both made it to 30 so far.”
Vail resident Blake Anderson said he quit his job answering phones three weeks ago, and now he’s racking up the days.”I’ll be broke soon, but I can get another job,” Anderson said. “If you live here, it’s a shame not to ski the hell out of the mountain. I was going crazy wasting so many days.”Somewhere in the 40s and 50s seemed to be common numbers for a lot of die hard skiers in Vail Saturday, aside from the vacationers and the true out of towners. Vail resident Trent Carter said that the snowfall hasn’t been as good this year, but that shouldn’t stop someone who loves it as much as he does.”I work nights, so I rarely miss, even if it’s not so great out there,” Carter said. He has his eyes set on 120 days this year.
It might be a surprise to some of you, but many people find the practice of counting ski days a bit strange.”I have no idea, I mean I go a few times a week, but I don’t know the number,” Vail resident Melanie Greens said. “That’s like some creep at a bar who keeps track of how many times he’s had sex.”Greens said she’d rather concentrate on making every time down the mountain the best time down the mountain.Staff Writer Matt Terrell can be reached at 748-2955 or firstname.lastname@example.org.