I realize its been a good long while since I’ve contributed a post to #thisgoldenlife. My bad -- I take full responsibility and there really is no good excuse. You know when you let something slide and then it reaches a point where you’ve left it so long its now that much harder to get to it again? That’s kinda what happened with me and keeping up with this site.
As it’s getting close to that time of year for making resolutions and goals for the year ahead, I’m happy to report I’ve have finally got myself to the place where I feel ready to recommit the time necessary to continue building #thisgoldenlife into the site I have always envisioned.
So here’s to my first post back and to a productive 2018 full of writing, writing, writing.
The good news is that despite the site’s relative dormancy, people have still been reading and visiting and contacting me with questions about Golden BC – which is so awesome, thank you! With that, I thought I’d dedicate my first post back to a public response to a common question people ask me. The question is this:
“Do you still enjoy living in Golden BC as much as you did when you first moved there, or have things changed for you (and is this why you are no longer writing – do you even live there anymore)?”
The short answer is yes, we do still enjoy Golden as much as we did when we first moved. The reason I fell off the writing wagon had nothing to do with not having anything good to say or not wanting to write about life as a recent Goldenite – it was that the rest of life taking priority for a while (this is strictly a volunteer endeavour); that, and one strong dose of procrastination.
I would say my appreciation for Golden has grown over these last four and a half years. I feel optimistic about its potential, confident about where we are at as a community, inspired by our many amazing community champions, and grateful to see that Goldenites cherish the history of this town as much as the present and future. I think this is core to Golden’s authenticity, and helps protect the temptation to sell out (however inadvertent and unintentional that may be) and end up becoming something we don’t ultimately want to be – like a Banff or a Canmore. Now I’ve got nothing at all against Banff or Canmore – I spend lots of time there, they are beautiful enjoyable places – its just not what Golden’s vibe is all about.
Because I work from home, I made a point from the get-go to get involved in community-based activities so that I could meet people and start engraining myself in the life and rhythm of Golden. And believe me, getting involved is super easy. There is a seemingly endless amount of interesting and meaningful opportunities for ways to contribute – whether it’s politics, the arts, community service, boards and committees, at the schools, and on any number of local clubs and teams. People always seem happy to welcome a new face, hear a new voice which sometimes brings fresh ideas or perspectives, and accept a new set of hands keen to jump in and help out.
To be honest, volunteering and community involvement is somewhat of a new thing for me. When we lived in the city I helped with one or two fundraising events and volunteered at my kids’ schools. That was it. Here in Golden, I’ve been involved with the dance school (which used to be a community cooperative – now it’s a bona fide business), the exec of the parent advisory committee at the high school, the exec of the GNAR ski club, the Local Advisory Committee for our electoral area (now I’m the Alternate Director for the rural area), the local Child and Youth Mental Health and Addictions Action Team, and community Vital Signs. And while I’m keen to do more, I do find I’m having to become more particular and intentional about what I say yes to. It can be a challenge, because there are so many people with important ideas and interesting initiatives who are genuinely just all about making a positive difference in our community. I do like being exposed to that kind of inspirational energy.
In addition to getting to know some fabulous people, these community involvements have deepened my appreciation for how Golden really is an ‘authentic’ place to live, work and play (I think that word’s even a part of our community tag line). People come to Golden from all over the world, along with many multi-generation local families, and truly from all different walks of life and backgrounds. The perception that Golden BC is just for the hard core adventurist is not at all correct. Yes, it completely suits for the hard core among us, but it also suits perfectly well for the outdoorsy lite (that’s me) and anyone looking for something real.
The longer I live here, the more I feel a sense of gratitude and appreciation for Golden not losing anything of its small town authentic feel, even though we are continuing to grow in tourism and as a community, and even though we continue to have challenging problems to solve. I appreciate its uniqueness and its down-to-earthness, the varied views and interests and skills and talents and stories of all the people who chose to live here. If ever I was looking for an antidote to the malaise of modern consumerism and the slow torture of suburban sameness (I wasn’t by the way, I just really liked the skiing), I needn’t have looked any further. The pace is slow. The people are real. Values and quality of life/what it means to live well are central themes for many who chose Golden BC as their home. There’s lots of depth here.
Yes, my four-and-a-half-year deep dive into Golden BC’s community and culture has been rich and gratifying indeed.
One way to get in touch with some of the things going on in our community is to ask to join the Golden Community facebook page.