Thursday, December 13, 2012

December Update: Winter Park, CO

It has been a while, and I have been lazy.

Here is an update on my life:

I arrived in Colorado November 11, and started work the following day at my winter gig, Devil's Thumb Ranch.  Go figure, another ranch, right?  It is bigger than the other ranches I have worked at, with an entire spa area, lodging for over 200 guests, and two restaurants, an upscale casual one where I work, Heck's, and a fine dining establishment, the Ranch House.

The ranch takes its' name from a Native American legend surrounding the local geography.  The story goes that the Ute and Arapahoe tribes were warring over this land and each chief lost a son.  They were distraught and declared a truce, realizing the ravages of war were never worth the land, and so decided to bury the Devil.  His thumb was left protruding from the rock to remind the people of the horrors of war and that the Devil could easily grab a fistful of rock and climb out of the mountain if the people were not careful.

Check out the little nub below, right in the middle of the frame.

I work as a server in Heck's, as previously mentioned, and will most likely work a few banquets as the Christmas season gets rolling.  The food is pretty excellent, and my coworkers are a friendly bunch, and of course a motley crew as in any restaurant.  It is the largest company I have ever worked for though, and so is a bit more impersonal, and more bureaucratic-e.g. as a server I do not have access to dry storage, so in order to stock even paper towels I must get a manager's keycard to access it.  A keycard is required to even enter the building.  I find this quite foreign.  With size, trust and relationships diminish.

For housing, I was lucky enough to nab a spot in the limited employee dorm-most people do not live on ranch-and was even luckier to be picked to move in to a new house the ranch just acquired.  Let's just say it is a step up from the other dorm.  It is starting to feel like home.

I took these pictures last week, but now everything is finally covered in snow.  Right now things look more like this picture I took yesterday while skiing at Winter Park.

Currently, work has been a little slow, i.e. only four days of work per week, so I have had tons of time to putter around and wait for the snow.  I read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo in three days, and have been baking like it's my job, well second job, I suppose.  Bagels, brioche, and naan specialties, along with buttermilk, wheat, rye, caraway, sunflower-molasses, and potato & garlic loafs.  Quite tasty.

Now that there is snow, I plan to continue baking and cooking new recipes while skiing daily.  Between the ranch's 125km of trails and the huge amount of terrain at Winter Park I will be quite busy. Things are shaping up nicely here.

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