Monday, March 11, 2013

Kate Miller 9: Skiing

Was asking for a ski trip for Christmas a good idea when I hadn't been skiing for...uhm... 7 years? 

9. Skiing (Jan, 2013)

            Months before Christmas, Kate had hinted to Mom and Dad Miller that she would be happy for all her presents to be lumped into one family skiing trip. Kate had her own generous supply under the tree Christmas morning. Even so, the day after the New Year, they piled into several cars and drove North to the mountains. It was cold and snowy, and Jack instantly brought in firewood from outside and started a roaring fire. Everything was so cozy, Kate almost had second thoughts. It had been seven years (or thereabouts) since she had been downhill skiing. What if she was wimpy and had to stop after a couple hours? Too late now, she shrugged.
trying to not be a catastrophe
            The next day, Jack, Mister, and Kate got up leisurely and decided to do a half day at Copper Mountain. There were boots and skis in their condo and Jack and Kate, at least, found equipment to suit them. Kate got ready to go. First, long underwear, then jeans, then snowpants, then sweatshirt, wind breaker, and ski vest. Moving was so awkward it wasn’t worth trying to get through the narrow bathroom door to see the unflattering effect. In the car, she narrated her future in her head in a TV announcer’s voice, Marshmellow-like, a young woman rolls down the hill, causing an avalanche and several other crashes. The first major catastrophe of this Christmas skiing season... Then she reawakened to her surroundings (the Copper parking lot) and thought with grim satisfaction that she could probably avoid being a major catastrophe.
at the top
beautiful sunny day!
            Kate, Mister, and Jack picked a lesser used lift and discussed which hills they wanted to try. Everything was fine. But as they started skiing, Kate realized with horror that her boots weren’t fitting properly. They forced her legs into such an awkward angle that she had to stop every few seconds to rest. Urrrrrgh. I can’t ski like this for the rest of the day! The boys waited for her and pointed her to one of the lodges. They would do another run and then return for her. Ski boots are never comfortable, but she adjusted them for her legs to be more flexible. After that, the whole day was splendidly fun. She refrained from being wimpy and mostly kept up with the boys, even on the black diamonds. (Though she flatly refused to do double blacks.) The only black mark was a treacherous little green hill (named “Easy Going” or some such nonsense). Some parts were fluffy snow and others parts were hard ice! How was a girl to keep her balance when going from one to the other? Kate sighed as she picked herself up and dusted off the snow. Who falls on green hills after zooming down blacks? Me…that’s who.
            By the end of the day, they were all exhausted, sore, and happy. There’s nothing like the feeling of flying down a mountain, Kate thought on multiple occasions. And Mister had been impressed with her performance, so falling or no, she was pleased to surpass his expectations.
"Jack" at Vale

            The next day was a half day at Vale. SO much better, Kate wrote in her journal that night. The snow was deep and even, and there was this one black diamond (Uzo or something like) that I kept going down while Mister did moguls. Ugh! I tried the moguls once, and was furious for him bringing me down there. I hadn’t the foggiest of how to go about them. I had to walk back up. But the rest was fabulous, and the last run was the best one. Probably a good fifteen minutes of skiing from one hill to the next all the way down the mountain! Beautiful sunny day, gorgeous views. It’s the BEST Christmas gift. I was especially glad I brought my shoes though… I tucked them into the front of my snowpants, and didn’t even notice them! I put them on whenever I took a break at a lodge, and at the bottom to walk to the car. Sometimes, I must admit, I’m brilliant.
            That evening they went out to dinner. The three skiers were too tired for much conversation, but Jack commented (was that familial pride in his voice?) that he didn’t think many pregnant ladies went skiing. Kate smiled. She hadn’t even thought about it. Obviously it had been fine, but surely she should have given some thought to baby safety. So much for brilliance. Like a shooting star, I flash in…and out. 

Marshmellow happiness

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