I’ve been thinking about writing this for several months but kept hesitating because, inevitably, someone will take it the wrong way. But last week drove me to get this on paper. Let me begin by saying that I love Eagle County. This town has given me so much over the last twenty years and has been my full-time home for a decade. I have amazing friends, I met the love of my life here, we bought a house here, and we are raising our son and dogs here. We are lucky to live in such a beautiful place. There are so many small businesses and families who do such a good job making it happen every day – and it’s not easy.
Regardless of its beauty, living in a transitional, seasonal town presents unique issues that may not exist in cities, but that’s not an excuse. We are all aware of the employee shortage in Eagle County – a direct result of how difficult it is to live here – and it’s a problem that doesn’t seem to be going away. But then there is the other side of it: People who just don’t care. People who no call, no show. People who do a terrible job and have no remorse. People who think their actions don’t have repercussions or affect anyone else or don’t care if they do. It’s exhausting. My husband and I talk about this all the time: Are people that ignorant or do they just not care? Which is worse? I don’t have the answer. But I do know that my patience is wearing thin.
While Covid took a toll on a lot of individuals and a lot of businesses, it is time to stand up, dust ourselves off, and pivot. On the positive side, Covid encouraged some to reevaluate priorities and realize that spending time with family and friends, and on experiences rather than items, was a more satisfying path. There are also people who learned to pivot. For example, several places in Eagle County decided to be open five days a week instead of seven because employees are hard to find and those employers want their crew to be happy. On the negative side, there are those who are still using Covid as an excuse to be lazy. Or, because they know they are the only person who provides a particular service in a small town, they assume they can “get away with” being completely unreliable because there is no one else to call.
The worst part is that when humans living in our fair town are constantly disappointed wherever they go and with whatever they do, it’s difficult to maintain a positive attitude. It’s hard to move on with your day knowing that there is nothing to be done. I want our son to have a happy, healthy, fun, fulfilling, and productive life. I want him to see all the good there is in Eagle County and the world. But right now, being optimistic is a challenge. I find it hard to want to help others when, instead of running my business, I spend my time chasing people down for responses, money they owe, or services they said they would complete and just don’t show up.
All of this being said, there are things to be done. People can decide to do their best, take a few minutes to do a little bit more, say thank you, take responsibility, be helpful when they can, and be accountable. I believe it can happen and I hope it does. I would like to get back to writing for my clients and helping my students – instead of writing about my disappointment in the town I love.