Saturday, 16 February 2008

Snow, Stags and Skis

Another one of Howard and Myrna’s fabulous pictures from Monday. What a gorgeous picture, and the weather really was that good. Also two added from Toby's phone.Wednesday was a blast, with more snow than you can see on the picture. We left here early leaving our long suffering friends to not only help themselves to their own breakfasts and look after the dogs, but to pay us for the privilege too. B and Bers beware! Nah not really, it is only Howard and Myrna that we use and abuse in this way.
The drive up was glorious with clear blue skies as far as you wished to look in either direction and mountains galore. We forced the children to abandon all electronic devices and look at the view, this will one day make them very grateful to us, I am sure. Once the boring stuff was over with ski hire etc (very speedy if you pre book but Garret was toe tapping as he has his own skis….Me too soon thank you ebay) we took off up to the tops for the children’s first chair lift ride which was approached in three very different ways.
T: -nonchalant and manly
F: -bit scared but excited
and lastly R: -quite a bit scared and fearful.
Before the lessons Garret had a go down the plateau with his usual aplomb and pronounced that I would love it…there was such a huge bump where his tongue was poking through his cheek, hamster style that I did not dare attempt it until escorted down by a properly qualified person. It was a bit icy in places but did not bring forth screams of “ AHHHHH it’s skitey” as before. I have no idea where that word came from (rhymes with kitey) having never used it before or since my fateful trip down from the top. We dumped the juniors on the long-suffering Paddy, bleary eyed from being a friends birth partner the night before (that is another story) and were free!
Quote of the week from Ryan “Fee, I think that you may just feel happier if you know that you can instantly stop on a slope”
This is so very true and that was exactly what I spent the first half of the lesson learning and can now attempt to do that twisty, jumpy thing when trying to turn. It seems to have eliminated a subliminal urge to run myself into a fence whenever feeling a wee bit insecure, those skis are a devil to untangle from the thin posts but do provide plenty of opportunity for humorous asides from Garret as he flashes by, and Ryan as he stands down-hill of me faithfully abiding by my foolish words of Monday. This was when I regretfully told him that I really should learn to get up alone and not have to drag his arm out of the socket every time I fall. The next hour was spent going down Mugs Alley again with Ryan encouraging, cheering and on one occasion when I spun off the wrong way down a fast bit laughing. There was, I am proud to report, cos I am such a sucker for showing off only one fall on the first run and none on the second (I don’t count ones that happen mere feet from the bottom) and, this is a big one I have now learnt to get myself up unaided (unless as happened once two snowboarders knock me over and feel so bad that I just had to let them assist me to my feet). All afternoon I had a big grin on my face practising the twisty thing and sometimes doing it and sometimes not. Some of the falls were the best bits. AND I have officially, according to Paddy progressed to Intermediate no less, not only intermediate but Advancing intermediate. I like the sound of that, it seems so grown up and important. Maybe I should try taking things a bit more seriously and stop doing the victory dance every time I make it down a run, falls and all…..or maybe not. The tow boys were also greatly encouraging, frankly amazed that such a wuss had turned up again and again. Toby was a demon on his skis down the plateau and the girls who struggled a wee bit balance-wise in the morning were quite happy to have the run of the car (where they ate my Bovril rolls…a crime that will not be forgotten lightly). Now I am in deep mourning for the end of the snow, which is slowly, and surely approaching as I type. (LATER hopefully that is not so now as after checking out the forecast for next week there could be snow on the way!!)Glencoe seeems to be holding on to the best of it and we love it there! Homeward bound we stopped at the climb down from the Glencoe to see the resident stags there who prowl around pretty much all day in order to send hundreds of tourists home with their photos safely tucked up in their cameras…..including us. Much cheaper than paying a piper to wow the passing traffic.The heroes of the day were waiting for us when we got home and even had the kettle on. Perfect. The rest of ½ term has been pretty good to with the promised weather surviving well into the weekend. We have ridden and baked and walked and talked and rowed and bickered so all is normal and well in the Corner Family Home.

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