Long before Martha Stewart was teaching housewives to sew yoga tote bags, Boulderites were already reaping the benefits of the Hindu philosophy. When people were still frequenting McDonald's and lighting up in restaurants, Boulder was snacking on tofu and banning smoking in public buildings. To outsiders, Boulder's aspirations towards reaching utopia are comic, but for its inhabitants, it is simply a way of life. With lavish resorts such as Vail, Copper Mountain, and Aspen only a few hours away, one has to be reminded that taking full advantage of a ski season is viewed as a luxury, and not just a recreational sport. Those wanting to take a leisurely hike can choose from a number of different trails that range from dirt paths along the Boulder Creek to steep divides through the foothills. Yet, Boulder is more than just a modest town offering simple pleasures. The downtown Pearl Street Mall caters to city shoppers seeking the latest styles.
There are few methods to understanding Boulder, but ask any student, and they will provide you with countless ways to describe it. It is a place where people come to ski, but learn that invigoration can be sought beyond moguls and slopes. This is where people breathe a little better and still enjoy a booming business environment, where Starbucks is shunned, Shakespeare is a tradition, and finding parking is still a problem. A college town where local residents resent students for driving expensive SUVs, rioting, throwing parties, and renting a piece of their well-kept secret. It is a place that provides more bars, concerts, happy hours, and drink specials than most cities twice its size, but still blames the students for excessive alcoholism. Overall, Boulder is a town where students consider themselves lucky to spend four years.