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New gondola? I知 jealous!
A couple of cute, warm young skiers cut the ribbon at the official opening of the new Buckaroo Express Gondola this past week.
Courtesy Vail Resorts 

New gondola? I知 jealous!

By Tom Boyd

December 25, 2007 —  Next time all the little kiddies go skiing at Beaver Creek they値l be able to ride in the ol Buckaroo Gondola, which isn稚 actually 登l樗 at all, but quite new.

It opened this past week at Beaver Creek, and gives riders of the bunny hill three minutes of warmth on chilly days.

And I知 thinking to myself, where was the gondola when I was a kid? When I was 6, as my niece is now, we little ones skied Golden Peak, where the two-seater chair 6 slowly cranked us up the hill, often stopping, leaving us hanging in the cold wind on a slippery bench and no safety bar. I remember gripping the pole with mittens of iron, praying I could make it to the top without falling while biting winds drove snow down the collar of my CB jacket. If the chair was stopped long enough, the big kids would swing their 210cm racing skis and get the chair bouncing higher into the air, intensifying my recurring episodes of vertigo.

I know what you池e thinking: 泥on稚 whine, you grew up in Vail!

OK, but my point is, shouldn't every child suffer through miserable cold as I did? Isn稚 that part of learning to love skiing? Shouldn稚 we remove safety bars, outlaw Gortex, and force our children out into hurricanes of snow without pity or remorse?

When I was young, I was told such painful episodes built character (and worse, I believed it).

Or maybe I should be asking another question: how come I already sound like a cranky old grandpa! Let the kids be warm and happy! Why not? Let 粗m ride!

Well, when I have children, there will be no happy little warm gondola rides for them. No no, they値l be freezing their little tushies off on a slow two-seater, just as I did, in order to ensure that some small part of Vail 痴 future children aren稚 a bunch of whiners.

Or maybe I should just decide on this one once I have a few little ones of my own.

While I ponder that thought over a hot toddie, enjoy your holiday wherever you are. And, in the best interest of your character, of course, I hope it痴 a cold one!



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