Hello Readers! Kat is just back from covering the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival! While there, she was tasked with spreading the word about Izilwane, reviewing films, meeting key conservationists to arrange future contact, interviewing delegates and blogging about her experiences. While she had a great time, it was a lot to take in! She is writing about the trip over at Izilwane’s blog; you can see her first post here.
Continue checking back with Izilwane for updates on the festival!
I don’t ski. Or snowboard. Something about “the art of catching cold and going broke while rapidly heading nowhere at great personal risk” (though that definition can accurately describe most aspects of my life anyway).
But ski-bum culture has always fascinated me. It’s a mix of reggae and pop and club remixes and a hint of new-age lounge. It’s cigar smoke and beer and all natural olive oil soap. These are people who spend all year waiting for that fresh powder.
They spend thousands of dollars on sick gear but are willing to fit 10 people in one double bed in one hotel room just to save money on their ski trip.
They know all about wine but prefer to drink beer.
They’ve read Vonnegut and Kerouac and enjoyed them but prefer to flip through Powder Magazine and Athleta catalogs. They tease beginners, but only because they remember THEIR first times, and they were all awful. They love the outdoors and roaring fireplaces and good food and don’t mind that their boots crush their toes and give them blisters that will last until next fall.
They are arrogant and self-absorbed and well-educated and friendly and always laughing.
I think next year, I will learn how to ski.
The night was heavy with the threat of snow and the chill of winter not yet ready to let go. We clung to our wool coats and our scarves, and we pulled our collars up around our necks in a vain attempt to avoid the cold. The boardwalk made dull thwomps as we made our way across town, bending and groaning slightly under the pressure of ice and stilettos and boots. But as we stepped inside the glass doors of the little bistro, warm air rushed out to greet us and welcome us inside with laughter and a friendly embrace. “Welcome, Welcome, have a drink! You are here!” it seemed to sing as we stomped our feet and dusted the flakes from our coats.
The foyer is always bustling, people sitting on the sofas and clinging to the dark corners, chattering, drinking, listening to the din of happy diners beyond the thick wool curtain. We had reservations for once, knowing that the end of ski season rush meant that tonight could be a busy one. What luck! There are two bar seats open just for us! We prefer to sit at bars, somehow they always seem more intimate to us, sitting next to each other, our knees touching, our elbows getting in the way, instead of reaching across an entire table of food and drink and assorted culinary accoutrements just to get that secret, gentle contact between lovers.
Trio Bistro is our regular haunt in Jackson, Wyoming, with it’s subtle, dim lighting, industrial-chic chairs and tables, and roaring wood-fired pizza oven that drives away the last remnants of winter in this busy mountain town. The wine list is extensive and fluid with the seasons and always includes varieties off the beaten path… blends or strange flavors or grapes from Morocco or Thailand or other places that would never conjure in the mind’s eye scenes of rolling vineyards or the lush spring of wine country. The food is excellent, as well, with plates of game and pastas that rival any found in a big city. But we always go with a pizza, crispy wood-fired crust, fresh toppings (try the duck!), deliciously hot and deliciously burned and satisfying in a way no frilly steak could be. We sit for hours and nibble our food and sip our wine and watch the world turn around us, pretending that for two hours we are in a cafe somewhere on the far side of the world.
This race is the longest sled dog race in the Lower 48, goes from Jackson, Wyoming to Park City, Utah and kid of zig-zags its way there to maximize influence.
Below is Lance Mackey, who won the Iditarod four times in a row!
I bet you didn’t know that Jamaica has its own dog sled team! Cool mushings! Below is Jamaica musher Newton Marshall!
Getting ready to start the race!
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