What I brought home with me

So here is how my story goes:

For New Year’s we went up to the mountains and stayed at a “cabin” (that had a dishwasher, two showers, and a washer and dryer) with a bunch of people for four days. One of those days we went skiing.

Now, I thought I did a good job explaining that I do not. know. how. to. ski.

I went skiing once in this tiny park in Illinois in 7th grade with a friend whose younger brother had a Boy Scout trip or something. I don’t remember anything from that trip other than that most of the time my friend thought it was hilarious that I had never had long strips of metal/plastic/wood/carbon/whatever strapped to my feet before, which is kind of like saying “Hah, you didn’t have any money growing up.”

Then, my sophomore or junior year of high school, my family took a trip to northern Wisconsin, where we went to a bonified Midwestern ski resort. I was the skiing expert of the family at that time. We started off really easy and fell down a good amount, but I remember by the end of the day my dad and I went up to the top of the hill and went down a “hard” run. And it was awesome.

Now, I thought I’d done a good job explaining that we don’t have hills in the midwest. We cover up our landfills with dirt and call it sledding when it snows.

But, apparently I didn’t do a good enough job, because Steve thought that when I said I don’t know how to ski I meant that I just wasn’t very good, that I would go slow.

So, I get my skis on, can barely make it to the chair lift and we go straight up to the top of the mountain. And I am losing my shit. “Why are we going up here? I can’t do this. This is really high.” and looking longingly at the kids bunny hill.

Steve was like, “It’ll be fine. You’ll be fine. Just go slow.”

But I didn’t know how to go slow. Or how to turn. I mean I knew in theory, but I would try it in practice and I would just pick up more and more speed. So we get to the top of this mountain that (I don’t care if everyone’s like ‘oh it wasn’t that big a resort’ blah blah) was high and was easily bigger and longer than the hard run I finally had worked up to 8 years earlier. I started and I just got faster and faster. Until, I’m hurtling down the hill, poles waving, and I can’t control my skiis and everything’s wobbling and shaking.

The crash was spectacular. Both skiis came off, poles; I finally stopped flipping and sliding about 100 feet down the hill from where my skiis has stopped.

After that, Steve really didn’t get much say in what I could or couldn’t do.

By the end of the day, I went back up to the top and went down the run again and it was fine. On my way up, though, the other guy in the chairlift said, “Wow, you just started skiing and you’re already going up this lift. You must be a really good athlete.”

So there.

Along with a three-day headache, the other thing I got from the trip, was a nasty cold. It turns out if a bunch of people are sick in a small space and everyone shares food and ignores basic germ theory, some of the other people will also end up sick.

I thought it was just a sore throat, going to pass in a couple days thing, but now it’s turning into the full-on Kelly Death Cough. I haven’t had bronchitis in a two years, and I’d really prefer not to have it again, so I’m going back to sleep.

5 thoughts on “What I brought home with me

  1. Love the new site.

    I pity you, but only kind of. The only time I ever skied (that is the past tense, right? I so don’t know how to ski, I don’t even know how to conjugate the verb) was in Finland in February. Trying to explain to Fins that you don’t know how to ski is like trying to explain to any human that you actually breathe through gills. They might even try to believe you, but they cannot understand the concept. I will make this story short. We missed our swim team luncheon date at the lodge by an hour because I fell in the snow many times instead of propelling myself in a forward direction. I was hungry when we got there, but it had closed. I wanted to find the humor in the situation, but my Finnish friends were horrified.

  2. Kenny, if you wanted, I could teach you how to ski – I even have a harness that would likely fit you. I can loan it to Steve next time. You don’t make people go down steep stuff when you’re responsible for keeping them from falling, going to fast or dying. In 4 short weeks I’ve managed to take a kid who has never skied to one of those annoying kids who goes really fast and makes you feel bad about the whole thing. I also know more people have been hurt skiing than any other sport – which is why I stopped for over 10 years. Ask Ian.

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