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Old 07-24-2010, 06:51 AM
 
Location: Grand Lake, Colorado
279 posts, read 580,821 times
Reputation: 211

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Don’t expect to be accepted as or be treated the same as a long-time or native working resident. You aren’t one and you won’t be treated as one.
As much as I may agree with the general context of your post, I still do not agree with your above comment (and find it offensive). If you read your entire post it's like you're saying "you're not one of us so I'll treat you with less respect and prefer you get out". This attitude appears many times in your posts.

No, I'm NOT a long-time, NOR a native resident. I am a migrant, not from another state but from another country, but I AM a hard working resident who has made Colorado their home. I have made many friends, they have been kind, generous and have treated me with the upmost respect. I have yet to find one person treat me any different and certainly not the way you describe it.
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Old 07-24-2010, 09:12 AM
 
Location: Kingman AZ
15,371 posts, read 33,196,028 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Minx View Post
As much as I may agree with the general context of your post, I still do not agree with your above comment (and find it offensive). If you read your entire post it's like you're saying "you're not one of us so I'll treat you with less respect and prefer you get out". This attitude appears many times in your posts.

No, I'm NOT a long-time, NOR a native resident. I am a migrant, not from another state but from another country, but I AM a hard working resident who has made Colorado their home. I have made many friends, they have been kind, generous and have treated me with the upmost respect. I have yet to find one person treat me any different and certainly not the way you describe it.
Grand Lake is not exactly the RURAL COLORADO that Jazz was talking about....try Limon or Hugo or anyone fo the other plaines towns....my stepfather lived in my home town for 20 years and he was STILL the guy from Goodland KS....if tyou werent born ther and loved there you will never be from there.
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Old 07-24-2010, 09:54 AM
 
8,317 posts, read 24,634,970 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dynimagelv View Post
Grand Lake is not exactly the RURAL COLORADO that Jazz was talking about....try Limon or Hugo or anyone fo the other plaines towns....my stepfather lived in my home town for 20 years and he was STILL the guy from Goodland KS....if tyou werent born ther and loved there you will never be from there.
Exactly, and I speak about that with a lot of personal experience. When I relocated from another area of Colorado (not even from out of state) to another small community, it took me YEARS to be accepted by the long-time locals. It hastened the process when I married a third generation native of the town. One thing that has made it much easier for me to gain acceptance all across rural Colorado is that my work over many years has put me in contact with the community leaders (most all long-time residents or natives) in nearly every county of the state. That's a unique benefit that most people do not get to enjoy.

It is true that it is possible to gain acceptance much easier in communities full of transplants and part-time residents, but the tradeoff is that most of those towns are not the tight-knit, look-after-one-another kinds of places that "real" small towns are. They mostly are little blobs of metropolitan and suburban attitudes plunked down in the rural parts of Colorado. People living in those places like to think that they are living in a true small town, but they are not--it's a cartoon version. I don't think it is necessarily a conscious thing--most urbanites and suburbanites who move to smaller communities just simply do not know how to be a "small town person"--they have never been exposed to small-town life.

I'll give you an example of how the community attitude changes as transplants and part-timers take over a town. I recently attended one of the typical small town community celebrations in a town that has seen huge growth in transplants. The town used to have one of the biggest community celebrations in the area. This year, in a continuing trend as the number of transplants has grown, few people attended any of the community events--numbers were down drastically despite the fact that the population of the area has increased hugely in the last few years. The newcomers flat did not participate--almost all the attendees were from the shrinking ranks of the long-time residents. Meanwhile, a friend of mine attended a very similar type celebration in one of Colorado's "stagnant" (meaning no population growth) agricultural communities. Despite being a town less than one-fifth the size of the town where I went (and being much more impoverished community), their celebration had nearly four times the attendance--in fact, for that day the population of the town more than doubled. Nearly every person in town, plus most of their relatives (my friend was one of those) made it a point to participate--and a grand time was had by all. Now, this is just one little example, but it is pretty illustrative of the difference between tight-knit small towns and Colorado's "resort-blob" organisms.

By the way, I don't consider it a "community celebration" when some resort town has some concert or festival that draws a bunch of people with no ties to the community whatsoever to town--that's just a way to make money.
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Old 07-24-2010, 01:19 PM
 
Location: Del Norte NM
529 posts, read 1,119,000 times
Reputation: 165
Quote:
Originally Posted by Minx View Post
As much as I may agree with the general context of your post, I still do not agree with your above comment (and find it offensive). If you read your entire post it's like you're saying "you're not one of us so I'll treat you with less respect and prefer you get out". This attitude appears many times in your posts.

No, I'm NOT a long-time, NOR a native resident. I am a migrant, not from another state but from another country, but I AM a hard working resident who has made Colorado their home. I have made many friends, they have been kind, generous and have treated me with the upmost respect. I have yet to find one person treat me any different and certainly not the way you describe it.
Dude,

That's rural America in general. On a trip to KCMO from NM, Istopped for gas in Sublette, KS going and coming back in Boise City, OK. Sublette really small and Boise City bigger but a stopping point between Amarillo and Denver. In both places I would'nt say they were happy to see me but they did take my money. When I stop in places in the SLV, they don't tell me "welcome to my town, here's a key to the city!"
Small town people tend to keep strangers at arm's length until they get to know them.

Jazzlover is merely, I think, trying to convey his idea and experiences as a person who traveled the entire Western Slope to those who think they have this picture in their head about what Colorado is. Cuz that ain't it. His message is a projection of reality.
I've followed his posts and he's never posted "you're not one of us so I'll treat you with less respect and prefer you get out". He merely tells people that Colorado is not the land of milk and honey. CO living is tough.

But if life is easy in Grand Lake for you, and it sounds like it is, I think that's awesome.
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Old 07-24-2010, 05:37 PM
 
9,815 posts, read 18,667,431 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ziasforever View Post
Small town people tend to keep strangers at arm's length until they get to know them.

Jazzlover is merely, I think, trying to convey his idea and experiences as a person who traveled the entire Western Slope to those who think they have this picture in their head about what Colorado is. Cuz that ain't it. His message is a projection of reality.
I've followed his posts and he's never posted "you're not one of us so I'll treat you with less respect and prefer you get out". He merely tells people that Colorado is not the land of milk and honey. CO living is tough.
It's like that in many situations with people or small towns anywhere. It takes time to build and develop relationships. Where I live in PA now, our small town is no different than anything I have known in Colorado. You have nice people, snooty people, friendly people, helpful people, corrupt people, druggies, deadbeats and people like me that don't like Californians or New Jerseyites

Is Colorado living tough? I don't think so personally in the sense of what appeals to me. I'm a 4th generation Coloradoan with other distant ties dating before that. I think I always grew up with a sense of the culture and way of life and when I was finally out of college and able to move there myself, I knew what I was getting into. I knew I was not going to Vail for an MBA, a corporate career, a massive mortgage on a mcmansion, suburban 9-5 lifestyle or other bog standard american living. I also was well aware of my relatives and the trade offs they made to live in the colorado mountains.

So technically for me it wasn't tough, because I knew what was available and I was getting out of it what I wanted. Was it hard? Yes at times it was hard and challenging and eventually once I have fulfilled that life experience, I decided to take a break from the state to further my goals elsewhere in life.

I think for a lot of people though that just don't know, they've seen a few pictures of Colorado mountains and aspens and burbling streams and think that is Colorado and now they'll be able to live this grand lifestyle in this mountain paradise on their social security check complete with home and health care et al.

A reality check is needed that most of the pretty Colorado in pictures is locked in winter for 8 months of the year and isolated. And of what is readily available is million dollar real estate for good reason. Or that they will have to be like people I know in Vail that are in their 60's, 70's and now 80's and still working full time. Or that they will have to live in an isolated ranch town hours from decent hospitals and shopping.

So it's a trade off and for some it wouldn't be tough because they are trading for what they want in life. For others they might be giving up everything they know for a fantasy world that never really existed anyways, so for them it will be tough.
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Old 07-24-2010, 05:41 PM
 
9,815 posts, read 18,667,431 times
Reputation: 7516
Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
By the way, I don't consider it a "community celebration" when some resort town has some concert or festival that draws a bunch of people with no ties to the community whatsoever to town--that's just a way to make money.
I don't think that is entirely true at all. All the time I spent in Aspen, Vail, Summit and Steamboat there was always a lot of different community activities going on that had heavy participation of locals, probably much more than "regular" towns I have lived in.
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Old 07-25-2010, 10:49 PM
 
12,535 posts, read 23,782,236 times
Reputation: 17857
I considered on and off for years the idea of moving to Ridgway. The only possible job for me would have been in Montrose (and that was dicey, too) and I figured I didn't want the only job for a hundred miles around (same thought of Durango, which I didn't like as much and didn't really consider moving to).
I live in a former small farm town 35 miles NW of Boston. Still has a lot of small-town ambiance and farms nearby but of course has good acess to the highways and people can commute into the city. However, most people seem to be local- inherited the summer shack from grandparents, are from the town, stay in the town. Without kids and the school connections, and not being from the town (although have lived here for 18 years, more than some of the selectmen!) and working off hours and my house isn't even on the road, I feel like I'm perched here more than part of anything. I donate to library, the conservation commission, and the council on aging.
I was chatting with a woman in a store about how I wasn't "from here," and she said, "Oh, I'm not from here either. I'm from Ayer."
Ayer is the next town, five miles away.
I don't attend the Memorial Day parade, partly because I always work the night shift before it, and also because I am well aware that many vets are not interested in parades. So I call my father, my favorite vet, and call and donate to the Center for Homeless Vets in town.
I really don't know how I could feel part of anything. For that matter, I'm not sure how "part of it" I might feel where I grew up.
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Old 07-26-2010, 02:58 AM
 
168 posts, read 317,170 times
Reputation: 138
I'm one of those who aren't from Colorado, moved there from somewhere else & then moved from there to yet somewhere else. And regret ever leaving Colorado.

I understand what Jazzy's point is. My time there was also part of a time of heavy influx of people (from CA mostly) coming in. It was sad some of the changes happening to the state due to "other staters" coming along; and rather than embracing the area, set out to make it like what they just moved out of.

What I read in what he's saying, is that people should be aware of a certain lifestyle that can possibly exist & that they should not automatically assume things will be the way they think it will be (maybe based on what they've heard or read or from a couple weeks visit). Maybe reevaluate their expectations, with another point of view on it (Jazz's). Maybe think through why they consider it "the" place to move to, and what it would be like to actually live there.

I've lived in many CO places, from Silverthorne to Elizabeth, each one unique based on it's reason for existing. All the sometimes-transient people in the mountains were nice because of it's tourist-second homes purpose, and the long time residents in the plains were nice because that's the way they are. There were bad experiences, too.

However, a lot of the US has had the same situation (economically, population growth, job crisis'). A lot of Utopias have vanished. A lot of people move for the wrong reasons, to the wrong places, with some dire results.
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Old 07-26-2010, 06:28 AM
 
9,807 posts, read 12,554,138 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jazzlover View Post
Since so many people constantly post about their dream to move to rural Colorado, I thought I should share my first-hand experience of what it’s really like to make a living here. First, let’s leave all the idealistic horse crap at the door. The common myth of the rural Rocky Mountain West is of the “rugged individualist” forging a living out in the spectacular scenery. That’s pretty much been crap from the beginning, and you’ll see why as you read the rest of this.

So, if you really want to live in rural Colorado, here’s how:

1.Easiest way: bring ALL of the money or income you need from somewhere else to live here for as long as you plan to live here. If that’s the rest of your life, plan on bringing a LOT of money—you’ll need it. Don’t plan on necessarily being loved or accepted in the community by the people who actually have to make a living there. Don’t confuse their smile when they take your money for some service or product they sell you as a sign of friendship—it often isn’t. Don’t expect to be accepted as or be treated the same as a long-time or native working resident. You aren’t one and you won’t be treated as one. Don’t think of the part-time resident-infested resort towns as being anything representing true rural Colorado. The represent real rural Colorado about as much as Disneyland represents real Los Angeles.

2.Forget about starting or buying some tourist trinket shop or low-capital investment service business. They’re generally losers from the get-go, and 90% of them fail within a few years. They’re great if you enjoy working your ass off for several years while chewing up your savings at the same time. Then you get to move back to the “real world” after a few years AND be broke. If you’re going to be in business, the best kinds are what I call “prime” businesses that serve basic community needs, but know that most of those in rural Colorado are usually owned by long-time residents who are inclined to pass them on to their children. If they sell the business, it is generally for an inflated price high enough that the new owner will have a real hard time making a go of it. I know several such business owners who have sold their businesses for a high price on an installment contract, knowing full well that they would be repossessing them with a year or two. Then they would sell them again. And repossess them again. And sell them again. As the old saying goes, the best way to make it in business in rural Colorado is either to inherit one or marry one.

3.Go to work for an “essential” enterprise—like the power company, supermarket, etc. Plan on working long hours and try to work in an area of the company not dependent on construction or growth. Be the best, so you can avoid layoffs when they come. Know that competition for the few jobs will be fierce.

4.Go to work in the minerals extraction industry. That means working in the gas fields or underground coal mines. Understand what the lifestyle is—often days, weeks, or months away from home for the gas workers, hazardous underground mine work for the coal miners. Understand, too, that the industry is cyclical—boom and bust. Sometimes when the bust comes, it lasts for years or—in some cases—for good.

5.Go to work for the government. Here’s a dirty little secret: for all of the bluster about rugged individualism and free enterprise, the biggest and most stable employer in rural Colorado is government—and has been for most of a century. In many cases, unlike much of the rest of the country, those government jobs are also the best paying. If you plan on going to work for county government, hospital district or school district (those usually being the biggest local employers), plan on being the best and the brightest who is willing to work harder than anyone else—so that you can survive the downsizing and layoffs that come in the bad times (like they are now). Also know that the “good ol’ boy” system is alive and well at the local level and that old-line residents will usually have the upper hand in getting the few jobs that are available—and they will hold onto them tenaciously once they have them. You can also try for the few federal and state jobs in rural Colorado—mostly with the natural resource management agencies. With them, getting a job may be nearly impossible, but if one can land one, it will usually last. The problem is that, most of the time, the agency decides where you will be, and that may or may not be in the community of your choosing. Eventually, too, you may be faced with accepting a transfer to a metro area (probably Denver) if you desire any advancement.

6.Don’t plan on your children being able to stay here. Most will not be able to find employment here when they grow up, and they have to leave. That’s been that way forever, and isn’t likely to change. To be sure, a few manage to stay, but most don’t.

If all of this sounds like a dark picture, it should. The difficulty of making a living in rural Colorado can not be sugar-coated. Those that do sugar-coat it either have a vested interest in selling something to the prospective resident, or they don’t really understand the rural Colorado economy. Making a living here requires extraordinary dedication, hard work, and sacrifice. Even at that, it will be less lucrative than most other locales in the country. The last twenty years have probably been the easiest twenty years in the last century in which to try to make a living in rural Colorado—and that has been no picnic for most. That period is likely over—for a very long time—in most rural parts of Colorado and much of the Rocky Mountain West.

This is a great informative post.

It seems every state that is scenic attracts the " dreamers" ( people who don't have 2 nickels to rub together) who believe moving to a state with spectacular scenery will solve all their problems.
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Old 07-26-2010, 08:24 AM
 
Location: Wherabouts Unknown!
7,743 posts, read 16,176,243 times
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marmac wrote:
It seems every state that is scenic attracts the " dreamers" ( people who don't have 2 nickels to rub together) who believe moving to a state with spectacular scenery will solve all their problems.
Are you saying the spectacular scenery WON'T solve all their problems?
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