Re: John Konig's letter of Jan. 16, Bitter and an embarrassment
Two days after reading Mr. Konig's letter some of my friends and I were riding the Whistler gondola wondering exactly which part of the mountain Mr. Konig has been on, during the "long time" he has skied here, without having witnessed an on-slope collision. We acknowledged the excellent job that Whistler-Blackcomb does to minimize such occurrences, but agreed that, since Mountain Safety staff cannot possibly be everywhere at once, collisions, unfortunately, do occur frequently.
Not quite two hours later, while skiing, I was hit by a novice snowboarder with such great force that I was knocked out of both skis and was sent 25 feet down the hill. Fortunately I was not seriously injured.
Nor was my son seriously injured three years ago when, while skiing on Blackcomb Mountain, he was "taken out" by an off-duty ski patroller (no reflection, of course, on our usually diligent and cautious ski patrollers!).
The stories go on and on. I would like to inform Mr. Konig, since he apparently has no first-hand experience, that once you or someone close to you has had an on-slope collision, your fear of and anger toward irresponsible or inexperienced skiers/boarders (who have no business being on the run they have chosen) is not easily shaken.
I would also like to inform Mr. Konig that he cannot speak for all Whistlerites in his contempt for G.D. Maxwell, and that as Whistler's favourite writer (Pique's Best of Whistler poll for 2003) G.D. is just satirical and often a source of great pride to the community.
"As we start the year 2003. we continue our work on Whistler. It's Our Future , our comprehensive sustainability plan with the assistance of the newly formed Citizens Advisory Committee. And we continue to work with the Provincial Government to resolve school taxes, to standardize the property tax classification of strata hotels, and to ensure financial sustainability for our community."
- from Tax Talk; A message from the mayor
As we start 2004, I thought I'd ask you, "Where are we going from here?" I am Roland Pfaff, chef/owner of Val d'Isere Restaurant. My wife and I came to Whistler during "construction" 14 years ago. Yes, things have changed for the better - from a little village to our beautiful four-season resort with world-class amenities and an unbelievable infrastructure for a community of 12,000 residents.
I am fortunate to know many local, small business entrepreneurs. All of them are exceptional professionals. Yet sadly, I see them drifting away, one after another. Obviously, the bottom line of operating a business in Whistler is not so good. One can easily find excuses why. yes, I can blame bad snow years, SARS, mad cow, floods, fire, Iraq, Afghanistan. but these calamities are beyond control. My concerns are closer to home.