Aspen is a town of quaint luxury located in ski bum grand central station. From the world’s wealthiest to the waitresses, ski instructors, and bartenders that keep this town shaking, Aspen is a melting pot for anyone seeking adventure and an escape from what most people consider the real world. However, do not think I am claiming that Aspen is not the real world, in fact, it most certainly is. The difference is that we made a choice to make this our real world. We decided to embrace the beauty and freedom that comes with living in Aspen. Now, not all of us have embraced a so-called real job or career, but there are some of us that have. So, what does that mean? It just means we get the best of both worlds in absolute paradise.
Paradise, of course, is an objective term. Everyone’s idea of it can and may be different, however, I would argue that few can deny the majestic spell Aspen casts among the residents and tourists alike. Protruding mountain scapes, mushrooming night life, no pun and pun intended, not to mention the beautiful people, all full of life and experiences. With all that Aspen has to offer, it is no wonder that so many make this place their home, or second home. However, with that being said, there are some sacrifices to be made.
- If you live here full-time, you probably are not going to work for the world’s largest companies and make hundred of thousands of dollars a year. This does not mean, you cannot meet a CEO and work remotely for them, but your options are limited.
2. Say hello to continuous online shopping. Yes, there is literally no place to go buy inexpensive clothes, makeup, house supplies, furniture, etc. Even my paper towels I have resorted to bringing in the internet to help with this mundane task. The closest town for any of this is about 45 mins away, and nobody, who works, has any real time for this trek.
3. You have no choice but to become more ‘active.’ Not that this is a sacrifice, but even the most unathletic of people need to step their game up, get up in the morning and go on a hike. We live in one of the most picturesque places in the world, if you aren’t ‘getting after it’ in some form or another, you are wasting precious space. Not to mention, everyone around you is climbing fourteeners and hiking hours to go ski untouched lines. You don’t want to feel like a complete bum now, do you?
4. You will be a topic of gossip at one point or another. It’s a small town. Everyone knows everyone. Regardless of your reputation, who you hang out with, or any other variables, at some point in time, your name will be in lights (some not so bright) around town. Just the nature of small town livin’.
5. You cannot leave the house without looking like a normal person. You will always run in to someone you know. Whether you are going to the post office, the market, or simply driving across town, you will absolutely run into at least one acquaintance. This town is too small, and everybody knows everybody, so keep that in mind before you leave the house in pajamas and your makeup from last night.
6. Say goodbye to ripe avocados and delicious produce all year round. This is my tragedy. Being from San Diego, I am used to beautiful ripe avocados and fresh produce literally all year long. Not only can you not get amazing produce unless you trek down to Whole Foods, 30 mins away, it’s expensive. Adios fresh farmer’s market finds.
7. Gym memberships are expensive, and there aren’t any decent ones, so it doesn’t matter anyway. Again, being from San Diego, everyone is a member at some gym. The gyms and classes are amazing and there is a whole world of fitness activities to choose from. Aspen, however has private clubs, which are amazing, but too expensive for anyone normal to buy into. Then you have your specialized yoga and other fitness studios, which are great, but also expensive and don’t offer any variety AT ALL.
8. You are on vacation almost all the time, because people always want to come and visit. Aspen is a vacation spot for most, but the few lucky enough to reside in this jewel of a town, expect all of your friends and family to show up at one point or another. There is always somebody in town, which means, as host, you need to provide the entertainment. Prepare to be exhausted everyday, for months…
9. Getting serious work done takes serious discipline. There is always something going on in this town. Whether you are heading on a hut trip, a camping trip, a show at the Belly Up, or 1/2 off at Kenichi, there is not one day or night that doesn’t tempt you to stray from your money-maker. Living in Aspen is a true test of discipline and focus.
10. It’s a pain in the arse to get in and out of this town. Denver is 4 hours away, flights in and out of this town are not only absurdly expensive, but are cancelled half of the time. So, if you are planning on visiting the Aspen bubble, understand that there is a good chance it’s going to be a hellova process.
Yes, those are all sacrifices we must make, but in my opinion you can throw them all out the window. Why? Because these are all things that make Aspen special. This secluded, yet highly sought after wonderland, is one of the best places on earth. Anyone who disagrees hasn’t visited our sacred little town.
So, to all of those dreaming of living in paradise, where there is a will, there’s a way…