Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Skiing in the Alps: 19/2/2011

     I was extremely anxious and excited to start skiing on the Alps. My libs were trembling with energy at the beginning, however, the others were not in the same state as me. Like the first two days, the grown-up were taking their time and lolly gagging. Suddenly, everyone was rushing because they realized they were moving too slow and were ready and out the door around 11:00 a.m. One of the reasons why we waited so long was because Marie lost her gloves and found some that were not a cheap date (around 100 euros!). It seemed everyone was loosing something or another. Luckily, I had no problems and waited patiently near the ski lift.
     Within the first few minutes of skiing I knew straight away that it would be a long and difficult learning process. In fact, I was an expert with my snowboard back in the United States, on the other hand, it never occurred to me to try skiing until the moment I was in the Alps. My whole group were skiing and I wanted to follow suit. Our beginning hill freighted me greatly. The intimidation of facing a slope without previous knowledge of navigating with skis was quite the challenge. On top of that, fog as thick as carpet enveloped our group. My eye sight was limited to the length of my outstretched arms, preventing me from anticipating the location of other skiers and snowboarders. Adrenaline pumped throughout my body while my skis slid down the mountain. With every awkward turn I stumbled because I didn't know how to turn, stop, or slow down  in general (like a baby trying out his or her new legs). My group encouraged me and gave me helpful tips on skiing technics. Their advice improved my position immensely, yet it also disabled me. I needed to experiment and adjust to my skis and the consistent commentary distracted me.
     When 3 o'clock came around we skied back to our little town in Val Thorens. In a nearby restaurant we stopped to eat a snack since we did not get the change to eat lunch. I ordered the most delicious hot chocolate with whipped cream that I have tasted in a long time. Floureen ordered a hot lemon drink, but the owners of the restaurant ripped her off because her 3 euro drink consisted of hot water with a lemon in it (without flavor). She let the waiter know her opinions of the poorly made drink and he gave her a small tea bag that costed her another 3 euros (the people in the mountains were crazy!). The pizza that Stephen ordered was also extremely expensive for 11 euros. My drink was around 4 euros, however, it was worth its value.
     After our snack we came back to our hotel room and pigged out. When we were satisfied, we went out shopping. Most of the products were expensive for their good quality (and perhaps everything in the Alps are more expensive due to the location). It was difficult for me not to impulsively buy everything on sight. The smell of waffles was in the air and, even though I just ate, I wanted to eat more junk food. Eventually, the others became tired and headed back; as for me, I walked around for another two hours to pass the time.
     When I walked through the hotel room door I walked out again to search for ingredients that Règine needed for supper that night. When 9 o'clock struck, we all sat down and enjoyed our first dinner in the Alps. It was difficult to sleep afterwards; not because I was not tired, but because I was only a few hours away from getting back on the mountain.
     The third day of my carnival vacation in the Alps was exceptional with the skiing, shopping, and the food. Not everyone can say that their first down hill skiing experience was spent in the Alps. Skiing on the mountains was not fun and games all the time because the combination of my lack of skiing experience and the foggy weather made the situation elaborate. At the restaurant, after we went skiing, it was painful for me to watch as Floureen paid for the 50 euros worth of drinks and the huge pizza for all of the people in our skiing group. We stretched our legs as we went shopping, then we ate a large dinner before our day came to an end.

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