Sunday, December 21, 2008

Vail

At the very moment that I’m writing this blog entry I’m sitting in one of america’s finest gas guzzlers, that green peace would shake a stick at, on a ten hour drive back to Kansas City from Breckenridge, Colorado. What a great week. We arrived last Sunday evening and were out on the snow covered slopes by half ten on Monday.

One of my best mates girlfriends had decided to work in Colorado for three months over the break and was in Vail, only about a 30-minute drive away. I had originally thought that it would be easy to go and hang out with her and the rest of the girls she was with… not. The buses weren’t running on the day I could go and see them and my blind dyslexic navigational skills mixed with the fact I haven’t driven on the right side of the road for three years (let alone on ice) hindered me slightly. Another good friend of mine from Aspen however came through on Wednesday evening and we went out together on Thursday.

We spent some time trying to find some free parking and eventually settled on the Safeway parking lot. We were in a jeep that didn’t lock, but in a first world country like the states in doesn’t matter. We left the jeep open all day with all matter of thing to be nicked inside (all his kit, I wasn’t going to run the risk). After getting our ski kit on we headed into Vail village to meet the mates girlfriend. She was with another dude that snowboards, quite the character.

I just want to make it clear that to me its only been a good day out skiing if you’ve pushed yourself far enough that you have a fantastic wipe out that leaves everyone that sees going, ‘oh my god, I bet that f&*king hurt!’ I’d been quite successful with it up until then.

Anyway, we got up to the top of our first run and within ten minutes I’d wiped out hard. The snowboarder had been down the left side of the slope and I’d been picking up speed down the middle. He then decided to cut across the slope in front of me, not realizing how fast we were both going. I tried to avoid him but all I succeeded in doing was burying both my skis under his board and being slingshot down the mountain… I made superman look like a bloody fly on the wall with the air I got.

I landed about twenty meters down the slope from where my skis had come off. It really was the most hysterical yard sale and I rolled over onto my back and started laughing. The snowboarder had come to a stop just below me after some quite impressive cartwheels and was in a panic that I’d caused myself some major damage. After the girlfriend had brought my skis down she was also panic stricken. It got worse after I removed all my goggles and beanie. I’d come down so hard that the goggles had cut into my face just enough to create a little stream of blood down my face. Once she realized it wasn’t so serious she calmed down and we carried on.

On our second run we were caught in a blizzard, which was one of the most frustrating experiences of my life. One of my best mates girlfriends was next to me and had formed a layer of ice on her face and was on the verge of tears. Not only do I feel like a have a responsibility to look after her as best I can when boyfriend is not around but she’s also a good chick she’s also a pretty good friend of mine now as well. But there she was, scared to death and literally freezing and I couldn’t do anything except try block as much wind as I could I try keep her going. To make things worse I almost felt responsible because she had been getting sick and had come out just to spend the morning skiing with us. I had realized she was sounding sick beforehand and had asked if she wouldn’t rather do something else but she’d said no.

Eventually we got down and went for a quiet beer and seen one of the other girls from back home…

Just realized that this is beginning to sound like a 16-year-old girls diary entry… I apologize.

There’s no real point to this story, there’s no rant, there’s just the appreciation for the friends that I’ve made over the last few years… there is something else but I’m not sure I feel comfortable sharing that yet.

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