Flying Down the Mountain (Our Skiing Stories)

Well, I suppose I owe you all an apology...
It's taken me longer than planned to get this post down, but it's finally here. 
This post is actually doubling as a  paper for school, so excuse me if it's a bit long.
That said, enjoy our favorite stories from skiing!
“It’s strange,” I said, “In a weird way I don’t want to get back, because that means the trip is over.”  My friend and I exchanged knowing smiles as we climbed back into the car.  It was a bittersweet moment.  As we continued our journey home, I thought back fondly over our trip.  From 6am on Saturday to 11 pm on Tuesday, it had been a memorable experience to say the least.    

“We need to be in the car by 6:30 am tomorrow, guys,” my dad said the night before takeoff.  I admired my father’s optimism.  We had sort of adopted the Duggar family’s tendency to run on “Duggar Time”, which meant that we were often out of the door a bit later than we had planned.  This trip was no exception, but thankfully we were only fashionable late. 

By 8:30am everyone was finally in-tow and we had finally hit the road.  We had brought several things to do in the car – books, movies, laptops, iPods, games, etc., but Grace and I just kind of crashed.  We were out-cold until Grace’s homemade cookies were brought out, reviving us.  “Brittany, you and Grace were passed out back there!”  Michael said with a friendly smirk which I sheepishly returned.   

6 hours later the North Carolinians in us marveled at the real-live snow that had fallen generously all winter at the ski resort as we unpacked the car and headed up to organize our ski gear.  We soon found out that there was no Wi-Fi or cell phone service.  Yikes.  Reviewing plans for the coming day also had a surprise in store for us.  “So Brittany,” my dad remarked, “The boys and I are heading up to Snow Shoe tomorrow, but you and Grace should probably stick to the slopes here at first.  We’ll meet back here at the room at 5pm.”

“Oh, ok…” I took a moment to think it over.  Me, the girl who get anxious when she can’t find her mom in the grocery store, will be with her friend at a separate skiing resort than the rest of the group with absolutely no way to contact anyone should tragedy strike while skiing.  Ok… Well, let the fun begin! 
The next morning we set out for the slopes.  I ran through in my mind all the things I would teach Grace.  I looked around for the bunny slope, figuring we’d take it slow to start out with.  Suddenly I hear a “Common, Brittany!”  and I look up to see Grace sliding down the mountain. 

“Grace, slow down!”  I yelled, as I hurried to catch up to her.  I started to get worried as I tried to catch up.  But then I stopped for a minute and looked at her.  “Wow,” I think to myself, “she’s a natural skier.”  I laughed a little and then pushed off to catch up to Grace.  We were going to have quite a day! 

I tried to teach skiing techniques to Grace, but I was pretty bad at it.  We skied and fell a few too many times, and then may or may not have decided that lessons would probably be helpful.  On the way up the ski lift during the lesson, I ended up dropping my pole at the unloading area.  I turned around to get it when I heard, “Hey!  Watch out!”  as the chair on the lift swung around and knocked me down.  I was much more embarrassed then hurt, and I like to think that the man in charge of the lift was much more concerned than angry, although it felt like it was the other way around.  My face was beet red as I apologized, but my pole was a rental and I needed to retrieve it.  As I asked about it, the man whirled around, grabbed the pole, and flung it towards me.  Grace and I tried to hold back laughs as I thanked him and hurried off.  This was just the start of our adventure. 

That night during dinner, David had a story to tell us that completely made my day.  His nearly word-for-word explanation of what happened was this:  “I was, om, following Brandon really fast on some jumps, and was recovering from a really big jump.  I was going too fast, so I cut really hard, and ended up cutting too hard which made me start to go backwards.  And I didn’t really know where I was going, until I slid into a big pit of bubbly, grassy mud.”  At this point we were laughing so hard we couldn’t hear the ending, but it got even better.  David was completely covered with mud, so much so that it was dripping off him.  My dad couldn’t think of anything else to do to get the mud off, so he told David to roll around in the snow.  The skiers in the lift above them were smirking sympathetically while they watched David roll around in the snow.  That was an experience we’ll never forget! 

The next day Grace and I were promoted to joining the rest of the group at Snow Shoe, the resort with the larger slopes.  I watched in awe (and with a smile) as she masterfully flew down each slope.  We ended up splitting ways with the boys again, and found ourselves at a very busy and crowded lift at the bottom of the mountain.  Finally making it to the top of the line, I noticed an older man motioning us to ride up with the younger man ahead of us.  Grace and I wanted to go alone, so I looked away, pretending I hadn’t seen the man.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw him shake his head in frustration and mutter under his breath before yelling out, “Double up!” and then, seeing he had miscounted, “No, triple up!  Get up there!”  He started jabbing me with his ski poles, but I continued to ignore him.  I was relieved when the younger man’s lift went off, and thought I had gotten out of it.  As Grace and I quickly scooted towards our lift as I heard the man say,
“Well alrighty, then.”  I turned around to see him and his buddy following us, and it hit me that they intended to ride up the ski lift with us.  In fact, they squeezed themselves in between Grace and me.  As the lift went up, the man turned towards me, nudging me with his elbow.  “You didn’t want to ride with him, huh?” He motioned to the young man ahead of us.  “Well,” he continued, “Now you’ll to ride with me!”  He smiled satisfied, and let out a little laugh as I stared straight ahead as I began to calmly freak out. 

I’d like to say that that was the end of our encounter with Mr. Freaky Man, but it wasn’t.  On our way to the car on our last day, Grace and I were standing in the bottom floor of the hotel which acted as the ski lodge as we waited for the rest of the group to get ready to go.  We had been there a few minutes when a familiar red jacket caught my eye.  I turned around to see a guy who looked a lot like Mr. Freaky Man coming down the stairs.  I froze as he spotted me and gave me the look before turning to go on his way.  He had just sent the loudest inaudible threat I’d ever received.  I didn’t know whether to laugh or call the police, but ended up just quickly making my way to safety outside. 

24 hours later I stood in the Field’s home as Grace and I sharing stories with her family of our trip.  We couldn’t stop smiling.  We’d had such an amazing weekend, with many funny stories to remember it by.  Needless to say, we’ve already made plans to return next year.  But maybe this time I’ll work up enough courage to throw my poles back at people in the situation calls for it, and bring pepper spray, should I see Mr. Freaky Man again.    

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