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Vail Daily’s Don Rogers: Ski town vibe still lives strong

Don Rogers
Vail, CO, Colorado

OK, I shouldn’t confess this, but Sounia made my day last Friday. Or night, I guess.

No, I’m not carrying on some clandestine affair. You can still focus on Lindsey’s love life of the future, thank you very much. No need to call my wife.

Sounia is a devoted mom who moved with her family here from Pennsylvania, I think, to make a life for her ski-crazy kids and husband Mike.



For about a year now she has been sending me pictures nearly every day of where she and the family have been, generally on the ski hill. You see some of those pictures in Town Talk.

In a way, she reminds me of Warren Miller. No, not the wrinkles and crochety but cool disposition.



I mean the pure, unvarnished enthusiasm for the ski life, the essence of Vail. I’ve met no one who embodies this like Sounia does, other than maybe Buzz Schleper.

Warren talks about living in ski resort parking lots and living on crackers. There’s no question in my mind that Sounia would do the same.

Her enthusiasm is boundless, infectious. I do believe she could sell snow to Eskimos. I hate public speaking, and she jollied me right into talking to the Ski and Snowboard School last year, convincing me that I’d love it. I did. And still I wonder how she did that. I avoid speaking engagements like, well, the plague.



But how did she make my day? Let me explain, finally.

I had been having one of those days at the office. You know. You have a plan for a big busy day, which includes every Friday since we have Saturday, Sunday and Monday editions to kick out. And, to paraphrase the W. Bush bumper stick, “stuff” happens.

And keeps happening. The boss wants to meet. The boss’s boss has an ASAP assignment. The managing editor has some serious points to get across. The heat isn’t working. The commentary pages won’t be laid out on time (since I do them, there’s a quick path to the culprit). And, oh yes, the party of the year is happening at the new Elway’s. The publisher must make his appearance. Wait, that’s … me.

I know. I have a great job. I’m not complaining. Just trying to get the order of the to-do list right.

The day dragged into evening and pretty soon the copy desk was ready for the commentary pages, which were, ahem, past deadline.

I may be the publisher, but “past deadline” respects no position. And the day played out so that I had to do the Elway thing and then get back and kick out commentary just ahead of the final pages.

And so I did. But here’s the thing: Just as I escaped the Elway’s party a little early, I bumped into a couple coming up the stairs.

The lady asked me where Elway’s was.

As I pointed, she said, “Don?”

It was Sounia and husband Mike. I confess I gladly gave them my invitation.

You’d do the same. This is their town.


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