Saturday, March 5, 2011

Will the Real Bunny Hill Please Stand Up?

I had the time of my life last night!  I don't get it--according to Wii Fit, I have the balance of an eighty-two year old lady.  But by some miracle, I am really getting the hang of skiing.  I started the evening on the training hill with Clint, but he decided to get a private snowboarding lesson from an instructor, and I began to feel restless.  So I decided to try out Snowflake by myself.  I was nervous about getting on the chair lift alone, since my experience is still so limited.  When I arrived to the chair lift, I asked a man standing nearby if this was the "Bunny Hill" (aka: "Snowflake").  He replied with, "I think so."  So I got on. 

About a quarter of the way up (after passing the real bunny hill), I realized I wasn't on the bunny hill at all.  I had gotten on the wrong chair lift.  I started to wonder how concerned I should be, but mentally coaxed myself into not worrying about it.  After a gazillion so-called minutes of "not worrying" passed, I finally got to the top of the hill (mountain is more accurate).  When I exited the chair lift, a few of my students were at the top, getting ready to go down.  I felt relief flood through me at having familiar faces nearby.  I said, "Thank God you guys are up here!  You have to get me off of this mountain!"  One of them, Nathan, who is an absolute sweetheart, said "Come on Mrs. P., I'll stay with you."  So we started down the slope together.  All was going well until I hit a patch of ice and my skis took off.  I flew past the other skiers.  Nathan kept shouting "Snow plow, Ms. P!  Make a pizza!"  I hollered back, "I am making a pizza!!  Nothing is happening!"  Pretty soon I could no longer hear Nathan, and I was completely out of control.  I swerved left and right, sending sprays of snow up into the air, trying to avoid grates, trees, and other skiers.  After what seemed like an eternity of feeling like a runaway train, I finally reached the bottom and made a hard right to stop myself.  At this point I was facing backwards...but still standing.  I was shocked that I hadn't completely ate it.  Nathan and a couple of other students caught up to me and said "That was so cool, Mrs. P!  We couldn't keep up with you!  When did you learn to go that fast?"  I was laughing so hard.  I told them "You guys, I swear I wasn't going fast on purpose!  My breaks just don't work!"

The rest of the night was absolutely exhilarating.  I skied non-stop, mostly with my students.  We took a break at around 7:00 to get a drink of water, and then it was back on the slopes.  Toward the end of the evening I reunited with Clint, and he was doing surprisingly good with the snowboard.

There was one other funny little incident last night.  I was on the chair lift with Nathan, heading up Coyote, and I was telling him about the trailer for the movie Frozen.  I told him how in the movie, the teens are in a chair lift similar to the one we were currently riding, when suddenly the chair stops and everything goes dark.  We were laughing at the spookiness of it all, when suddenly a minute later, at what had to be the highest point of our journey, our chair comes to a complete stop.  Nathan and I didn't say anything for a few seconds, and then he says, "Like this, Mrs. P?"  I laugh and say, "Yes, just like this.  Except for there are supposed to be wolves down there."  After another two minutes of sitting there, stuck, Nathan says, "I hope you have a cellphone, Mrs. P."  I told him, "I left mine at the lodge.  But I'm sure the people behind us have one."  We turn around, and every single chair behind us, as far as the eye can see, is empty.  At this point we both started giggling hard.  Another student, David, was riding solo in the chair in front of us, and I shouted to him, "Gee, this isn't horror movie material AT ALL."  A few minutes more pass, and just as Nathan and I are determining how many hypothetical bones we'd break if we jumped, the chair started moving again.  We found out later that a snowboarder had crashed while exiting the ski lift (she was fine; she herself told us about her accident); hence the five minute delay.

This was the last ski and snowboard trip for the season with my school, but Clint and I are going to try to go again on our own one more time this month.  I'd really like to try snowboarding, although the prospect of having both feet anchored to a board seems like sheer insanity.