Aspen, CO Colorado Life here is different. We all know that, of course, but sometimes we take it for granted and lose sight of just how special and unique it is to live in Aspen. Im often reminded of it, however, in small, seemingly innocuous ways. The other day, for example, my wife received an e- mail from a friend in response to a query about getting together over the upcoming weekend. The e-mail said the friend was free Saturday night, but was going to yoga in the morning and then had a powder date immediately after that. Where else do you find folks who fill up their days by stretching their bodies and laying down fresh tracks? People here just think differently. This past week, there were a couple of fundraisers that pointed out how we do things. In most places a fundraiser might involve a potluck meal or a casino night. Here, an event to raise money for a stricken local child called for folks to line up at the base of Buttermilk at 7 on a Sunday morning to climb up through the subzero temperatures and the stinging, man-made snow machines to the top. And then, perhaps even more brutal, to ride down on the chairlift through the same conditions. And another local nonprofit raises funds by taking people out for moonlit snowshoe hikes each full moon. In many places, people live to work. They make decisions on where to live their lives based on what business they want to be in. Say youre a tech guy, Seattle or the Silicon Valley may beckon. If medicine is your chosen path and profession, maybe Boston is the place for you. But here, people at least those who still need to work to live. Or more precisely, work to ski. So many people in this valley hold down two or even three jobs just so they can get a pass and free hours in the daylight so they can ski. Even some of our most esteemed real estate brokers (oxymoron alert) got into the biz just so they could make a living and buy extra ski time. Even if they dont remember it quite that way. But even beyond our attitudes, or the things we do to survive in this valley, what truly makes it different is the amazing confluence of natural, geographical, climatological and, yes, even celestial factors that have come together to create such beauty. It stares us in the face each day winter, spring, summer and fall. It is so powerful that it has to have a profound effect on the way we live our lives. Yes, things are different here. And thank God for that. For those of you who simply forgot last week, there is a fund set up at US Bank on Main Street for the stricken Orazio Goffrodo. Please donate what you can.