The day Aspen died
August 17, 2005
Dear Editor:Ten years have passed since my return to Aspen. The memories of those times have been carried on a pillow in my mind. Protected from broken visions of wonderment, peace and a place I could call sanctuary. Being a San Franciscan native, it is important to a have a majestic place called Aspen to escape to; it brought comfort to my soul.It was 1,100 miles of driving that carried me back to Aspen for the best time of the year (August). It was a grueling 16-hour drive, driven only by my illusions of grandeur. To again walk the streets of downtown Aspen and enjoy a casual conversation over a beer was definitely needed. As I arrived and headed my way up Highway 82 traffic became congested, and a pain began to develop in my temple. Being the urban survivalist that I am, I diagnosed the symptom as stress. “No!” I screamed. “It can’t be … ” But it was stress, and I had to deal with it. How much worst can it get anyway, right? Hang in there; I’m almost to sanctuary … I finally made it to the roundabout, when I began to experience a twitch in my left eye. This can’t be good. A pain in my temple and now a twitch in my eye? O jeez, now what? My palms are sweating and they’re starting to stick to the dried chicken grease on my steering wheel! It must be from the several quick decisions in directions that I had to make to maneuver through a maze of confusion. Sanctuary was beginning to look more like Fisherman’s Wharf, but I still had faith, until I ran into the problem of parking. Signs where planted everywhere demanding quarters and stating limits on parking time. Every spot was filled. By this time my diagnosis was extreme stress coupled with depression. Sanctuary was now the land of opulence. Filled with pretentious individuals dry of personality. I guess the past is the past. But for me, Aspen that day fell from the pillow in my mind. Shattering on the granite floor of broken dreams. It’s over for me and Aspen.I have a purpose now. The purpose is to find a new sanctuary. A new place where I can go. A place of wonderment and peace. A place called sanctuary. James G. GoanDaly City, Calif.