With winter almost here and ski season set to begin, we’re sure to see an uptick in visitors over the next few months. Entertaining in the winter is easy, and entertaining skiers is even easier—simply stock the fridge with good beer, put something hearty in the crockpot in the morning, and let that miraculous machine turn it into a delicious dinner by the time you get home from playing in the mountains.
Celebrating a great day on the slopes in a warm kitchen, surrounded by friends with bowls of chili and a bounty of fancy beers might sound like the perfect illustration of après activity to some. However, I’m sad to admit that I’m going to miss the summer ritual of bringing guests downtown and introducing them to our local burrito joint, Dos Amigos.
To me, a visit to Dos Amigos has become so synonymous with summer visitors that I now feel weird going there without an out-of-town friend in tow and having not just gotten off my mountain bike. In fact, on the occasional days that I meet my wife at Dos Amigos for lunch, I feel like I should rub a little dirt on myself before heading in, just to give the appearance that I’ve earned my meal.
Sure I could easily throw burgers on the grill and drag a cooler to the patio in the summer, but for some reason, Dos Amigos feels more appropriate. The short walk or pedal downtown and back provides the perfect cooldown to a day spent playing in the woods, and the relaxed pace provides an oppurtunity to talk, something that is not always easy when chasing fast friends, grinding up hills, or testing the boundaries of how fast you are willing to descend.
Perhaps the thing that I love most about Dos Amigos is the air conditioning—kidding…sort of. In all seriousness, I like that Dos Amigos gets me away from the house and all the things I think I should be doing. After all, who can relax on the patio while looking at the lawn that has to be mowed, knowing that your bike should be cleaned, or that there is a mountain of laundry waiting inside? Not me, that’s for sure. Getting away from the house lets me be more present and assures I won’t begin cleaning the kitchen sink or pulling weeds mid-conversation.
Although I will miss those walks to Dos Amigos this winter, I have been brushing up on my chili recipe, the fridge is stocked with good beer, and I’m ready for ski season’s first visitors. I just can’t promise I won’t clean the counters while they’re here.