My parents taught me to ski at a very young age and I am incredibly thankful that they did; being able to ski, and ski fairly well, has opened doors for me that never would have been available otherwise. For example, I had the wonderful opportunity to ski two amazing resorts last Spring Break; Telluride and Crested Butte. These two ski resorts both fall on the Rocky Mountains, are breathtakingly gorgeous, and are mindblowingly expensive. I realized recently, though, that all of my skiing experience has been expensive. I have lived my entire life in the Midwest, but I have never skied outside of Colorado. Now, my family has been lucky that my grandparents have a home in CO, so we don’t have to pay for housing, and my parents are relentless bargain-finders (especially when it comes to lift tickets), so our trips aren’t as expensive as they could be. That doesn’t mean I’m not incredibly privileged to have learned to ski on one of the oldest ski resorts in Colorado.
If you’ve read any of my previous posts, you’ve probably figured out that I’m in the middle of a book called Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie. One of the side characters in this novel makes a comment about how people who ski at resorts like Telluride, Crested Butte, and Aspen “expect somebody to tie their ski boots up for them.” I realized that every time I’ve gone skiing, somebody has, in fact, tightened my boots for me. Now, this might be because I don’t own ski boots and the person at the rental shop needs to make sure my rentals fit, but still. This small comment definitely caught me off-guard and made me pause my reading. I have no idea what it’s like to ski in my home state, let alone another country! And the fact that I’ve been skiing at all inherently shows my privilege. This is a shorter post, but the book quote took me by surprise, and I figured I’d share.
TLDR; Privilege can be revealed in most aspects of your life, don’t take it for granted.