Frozen Toes

Try the T-Bar, they said. It’ll be fun they said.

Even the kids do it, they said.

In my world, when you need to go up a ski hill, you sit your ass in a suspended chair and you get carried up. Not without risk, sure, but surely less dangerous than trusting a two foot section of 2×4 wedged somewhere between your knees and butt, if you’re lucky enough to get it in the right place.

After a couple seriously false starts – including falling off halfway up after holding the entire contraption with my hands after it slipped; why thanks, I did need more cardio today – I actually did get the hang of the damn thing, but come on.

Used for smaller hills (which still go up enough to have black diamonds, mind you) and a scion of ski times I thought long-past, this week’s adventure was brought to you by alpine night skiing at Titcomb Hill in Farmington.

A community ski hill, they hosted a free ski night, with $5 rentals. P thought it would be a great time to relearn on alpines and I readily agreed, excitedly thinking of teaching him the ropes of one of my favorite sports, having no idea what it would entail for me.

I’ve been skiing my entire life and absolutely adore it. Note this does not include suspension systems that require my utmost attention and balance as they yank me precariously up a hill ON MY OWN TWO FEET.

But after earning my “you’re a pro now, dude” from the lift op, a gigantic bruise on my thigh, and whizzing down some great slopes for the first time since last season (XC just doesn’t count, sorry not sorry) I felt a joy I haven’t had since I was a kid (although I was laughed at by a lot of children that night…).

The joy of mastering a new skill during something you thought you had down pat – and falling down in front of an entire line of people, and just getting up again.

As I warmed my frozen toes (it was in the negatives, y’all) in front of the fire in the tiny, packed lodge, kids whizzed around me, parents stuffed rosy limbs into down sleeves, and seemingly endless amounts of pizza were served, I was so thankful.

Thankful for the falls, the free skiing, the (eventual) laughter, and the unmatched freedom of pointing my skis straight down, and saying see ya later.


The Art of the Everyday – March 1: Offbeat, out of doors.


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