Last Friday night was the grand opening of the new 1829 boutique in Town Square. As happens a lot around here, the faithful were out in force, shopping, chatting, hanging. It is a lovely store — a harbinger of the future, I hope — and the welcoming crowd brought a positive vibe. As I scanned around at all the familiar faces, some weekenders and some residents, I thought about the strange gravity that brings us all back here, or makes us stay. The old marketing campaign, “Love”, really wasn’t too far off the mark. With that thought, I give you the first twenty-one reasons I could think of why you should abandon the comforts of the suburbs and move to Waterville Valley full time. Or, as I say in my more candid moments, “Brains… more brains… fresh brains…”
1. You ask your friends what time they’re arriving Friday night, because it never occurs to you that they might not actually be coming up.
2. You hit refresh more than three times on the Resort webcam during a conference call.
3. You know where Swazeytown is.
4. You care where Swazeytown is.
5. You smell woodsmoke and leaf mold and your Pavlovian response is to start waxing your skis.
6. You feel just a little better when you put on your WV fleece or baseball cap.
7. You know exactly when it’s time to say goodbye in Thornton, because you know exactly where your cell phone will drop on Rt. 49 on the way in.
8. Your server at the Coyote says, “I won’t bother with tonight’s specials. The Buffalo Meatloaf and a very dry Grey Goose Martini, super cold, slightly dirty.” And she doesn’t wait for confirmation.
9. You stop in the middle of Lower Bobby’s, and you can pick out your condo.
10. You hear Warren Miller intone “I’ve been telling you, move to a ski resort this year. If you don’t, you’ll be one year older when you do”… and in your heart of hearts, you know he’s right.
11. The sight of a moose thrills you nearly as much as the sight of your bride/groom standing at the altar. Nearly.
12. The thought of running into a bear on the trail secretly pleases you.
13. The idea that a family of red foxes might be your closest neighbors seems pretty good to you.
14. You wonder why Real Life can’t be like this.
15. You scheme on Sunday nights for a reason to stay.
16. You realize that “work-from-home” Fridays can mean “work-from-the-Valley”. And then you actually work, so you get to do it again.
17. Your kids’ best friends are the kids they ski with every weekend.
18. Your best friends are the grown-up kids you ski with every weekend.
19. You know what time the Saturday morning warm-up crowd at the Schwendi breaks, so you can always get a table. No, I am not sharing.
20. You recognize and appreciate the fact that Steve, the Schwendi chef, will always play four songs you know and one you don’t, but love, in his house music mix.
21. Regardless of where you spend your weekdays, you only truly feel at home when you’re in the Valley.
If more than a few of these ring a bell for you, you have my condolences… what time do you want to meet for coffee on Tuesday morning?