Living in a ski resort town, we get all kinds of people. The weekend tourist, up from Denver, or the Front Range somewhere, the European skier, the west coaster and the east coaster. They come from everywhere - all over the United States. Depending on the time of year usually dictates what we see as far as tourists go. Right now, its "Blues Break". Some school systems in the United States have this second winter break, mid February. Steamboat is no different. This time of year offers families, and also the high dollar tourist some pretty good snow conditions. The last week saw 5 feet of the white stuff falling. Funny how Ann Coulter shows up in town, and all of a sudden powder gods dump 5 feet of deep powder across the Yampa Valley.
I detest the chore of grocery shopping. During off season, its not too bad, as most locals have a brain between their ears, and not some vast, wide open spaces, as the Dixie Chicks lamented about a few years ago. Maybe its the metal detector, or the TSA security checkers who are doing body cavity searches. I don't know. But what I can tell you is that tourists in Steamboat can be the most vacant headed of people in the entire world.
I never knew it took 8 people to pick out a frozen pizza at the grocery store. I also did not know that when all the cars in a parking lot are nosed in, going a certain direction, that odds are that some one from Texas, Jersey, Tennessee or Florida can take that to mean they should drive the opposing direction in the parking lot.
Locals can often be overheard uttering under their breath, "tourons". The grocery check out lane that reads 15 items or less, or quick check out should then be interpreted as 100 items or more, plus 5 extra people just to keep you company, while you chatter away, causing mass congestion. It simply defies logic.
Today my husband and I ventured into our local grocery store, against our better judgment to pick up a few items, 3:30p.m. on a Saturday. When every fiber of your being tells you not to walk into a burning building, but you still do it - well I suppose we were just asking for it. One of the mannerisms I possess, which I firmly believe that my husband wishes I would lose, is my ability to strike up conversations with anyone. That, coupled with the fact that apparently we are not the only locals dumb enough to enter the grocery on a big ski day, introduces a demented type of social hour in the pasta line. I usually find some other local to chat with. We are smart enough to pull our carts to a side aisle, where there is no way that we can be in someone else's way.
At any rate, here we were, in the grocery and trying to get a few things. One of my biggest irks are full length fur coats. Really? Is it THAT cold inside the grocery store that you need to wear a full length fur coat? First and foremost is the fact that some poor little creature gave his life so that you could dress in such a hideous manner. Secondly, this is Steamboat, not Vail or Aspen. Locals here in Steamboat pride ourselves in dressing like real people. Its not uncommon to see a local walking in their old Uggs, over sized sweats and a sweatshirt at any given time of the day during winter. We are at the grocery store to buy produce, or meat or mixers for cocktails. Its not a fashion show or a runway in Paris during fashion week. It's City Market. We want to get in, get our stuff, and get out.
So, back to the fur coat. This afternoon, common sense was out of stock and stupidity, and lack of consideration were overstocked. We were unlucky enough to be stuck behind some dame in a full length mink coat, with a weird GI Joe kind of belt, a red fedora and a cell phone surgically attached to her head. I suppose that cell phone was the only thing keeping her head warm, as I am sure there must have been a wind tunnel between her ears, and underneath her over bleached hair. I tried in vain to navigate around this woman. Of course it was evident that her GPS system was out of sync. No matter what I did to attempt to get around her, there was no way around it. She was a road block on my grocery store freeway. I looked at my husband, and he gazed at me, and there we stood, our shoulders shrugged, and chuckling. I guess you have to laugh, because what else is there? Sure, I could open my mouth and say something, but in the end, all this would accomplish is my husband getting upset, and me needing an ativan. Keeping sober is top priority to me, so, I try not to get my dander up when stupidity comes within range, disguised as an older, fur coated, cell phoned lady. At least I was not the only one who noticed this absurd display of lunacy...other shoppers were equally amused. That's what we do in Steamboat, we share! This dame looked like something out of the Vagina Monologues. Really, who wears fur with a red fedora?
My husband mentioned to me that after a 30 minute trip to the grocery store, on a weekend, with the fur coat lady causing traffic obstacles, he now fully understood Hannibal Lecter's desire to eat the the rude - the free range rude as it were.
Prilosec. I had to detour around her, and found myself standing in front of antacids. Somehow a 30 year old Jameson sounds more relaxing.