She almost missed the turn for Este, a hairpin flick in a mountain pass. It was fifteen miles, and out of the national park area. Most of the buildings were done in a log cabin slash cobbled fifties style, with quirky signage. There were a number of saloons and drinking establishments with bear sculptures standing guard at the doors. A German ‘Ubermart’. There were several motels claiming to be Authentic Alpen or Chalet style. From what she knew of Colorado skiing town culture, which wasn’t much, this appeared to be in the same, slightly baffling vein.
She followed the main street to locate the normal supermarket, which was a good bit smaller than the bratwurst and lederhosen vendor. The fresh produce section had corn, potatoes white and sweet, some greens and a stack of strawberry punnets. No strings of dried chilli peppers, as there had been around the restaurants of Santa Fe. Whoever had decorated the cabin had strung one over the kitchen stove. Strictly for decoration only, as she’d gathered from the dust.
Deeper into the shop was a local food display, and on it, one of the jars she had seen at home – ‘Gam’s Jams: Blackberry Pucker’ – a printed label that looked homemade. Whoever had bought it here. Or perhaps it had been brought by the eponymous Gam himself?
Aida at the checkout. The girl leisurely popping gum as she scanned, in time to the blips.
“You here on vacation?”
Aida nodded. For the best.
“Fun in a bun.”