Monday, October 27, 2008

My first try at #15

Number 15 on my life list is learn to snow ski. I think it is going to take several, SEVERAL tries before I get the hang of it. I have never been accused of being graceful or being coordinated. In fact, some have even called me a klutz and accident-prone. So, on that note, let me tell you about my first experience on skis. Snow skis, that is.

In February of 2003, Vol Fan, his mom, and her friend Marilyn and I took a trip. A trip to experience things that we had never experienced and visit some family along the way. My Dad is from western New York - aka part of the Snow Belt - aka recipient of LOTS of lake effect snow. [Our experience as Southerners in a very snowy area in February is another story!]

We stayed at Peak-n-Peek resort in Findley Lake, New York. We thought the place was great but since this was our first (and only) time to be at a ski resort, it could have been really crappy and we would never have known.

Anyway, on the day that we chose to ski, we went to the lodge and signed up for a class. Marilyn had skied before but it had been several years so she felt she could use a refresher. The rest of us had never been on skis. Snow skis, that is.

So we suited up. Made fun of how funny every one looked walking in those crazy boots. Generally having a great time. Our instructor arrived and told us how to click into the skis and then started on the basics.

She had us go down a slope just outside the door of the lodge. The slope was about 20 feet long with an elevation gain of, oh, about 2 feet. This was where Russell's mom called it quits. She had recently had surgery on her wrist and didn't feel steady enough not to fall and re-injure her wrist.

Once we had mastered that hill, our instructor had us head to the bunny slope. She gave us instructions on how to enter and exit the lift. This part I mastered like a champ!

At the top, she started giving us more instruction about turning, etc. Russell and Marilyn were off like they were born on skis. Me? Not so much. So the instructor took pity on me and pulled me off to the side for a little one-on-one.

First, she got beside me, hoping that I would mimic her movements. I tried. I really, really tried. It just didn't work.

So then she got in front of me so I could hold onto her ski pole and she could guide me while she skied backwards. This was working out really good until we needed to make the turn to go the other direction.

As we made the turn, apparently I didn't quite mimic her movements exactly. So down I went. But did I fall completely down? No. I just sort of fell into a squat and kept on skiing. And went right between her legs!!

At this point, she decided that there was just no hope for me. And left, probably just as embarrassed as I was!

So I told Russell and Marilyn to just go on their merry way - that I would rather try to do this alone anyway. I kept trying, for what seemed like hours. I would think I was getting the hang of things and then I would notice the trees were getting closer and closer and I would panic. My water skiing ability kept confusing with my snow ski instructions.

If you don't know, water skiing and snow skiing are exact opposites. To water ski, you lean back. To snow ski, you lean forward. While water skiing, to go left you put pressure on your left foot. While snow skiing, to go left you put pressure on your right foot. So all of this was a jumble in my brain.

On my final run of the day, I was thinking that I was finally getting the hang of things. So I sped up a little. I don't really know what happened but I fell. When I fell, my ass landed on the backs of my skis. And, no, my feet didn't come out of the bindings. And my skis were pointed directly downhill.

So down I went. Flat on my back.

When I finally stopped, Russell's mom came running over to see if I was hurt. I wasn't but I couldn't get up. My feet were still stuck in the skis and because of the position, I couldn't roll to my side either. Russell's mom tried to help me up but as she pulled on my hands, I just slid in that direction! Russell finally arrived and was able to get me out of my bindings.

And that, my friends, was the end of my day! At the bottom of the bunny slope, flat on my back, stuck in my skis. Hopefully, my next try will be better.


big hair envy said...

It's eerie how similar our skiing experiences are. I bought a sweatshirt that said "Crash Bunny" on the front:) Now, I just prefer to sit in the bar and watch other people ski. It makes me feel better about myself!!!

Charisa said...

I love your life list! I have one I started when I was 18 - it's still growing . . .

BaileyBoohJonas said...


BusyBeeSuz said...

You mean you will try this again???? I have made it 41 years without snow skiing...I think it will stay that way. Your stroy is funny and so are you.
I loved reading your link about your dad. Yes, he is a total bad ass. You are a lucky girl!!!!

Pleasing Procrasinator said...

I am with BHE, I prefer to sit in the bar and watch others because 1) I cannot stand the cold and 2)at almost 40 yrs, I do not want to start breaking bones now.

Desert Survivor said...

If you can get off the lift okay, I say you're a better skier than most! I'm not a very good skier--I don't like to go fast, but it still is fun--as long as I don't crash. Good luck on your next attempt!