I know I asked the question Am I Ready for the Ski World? last week. And I believe the answer is yes, yes I am. I am a total natural…can't you tell by the way I am shredding this??
The post I wrote that morning at Sugarbush was rushed; one, because my dear husband was chomping at the bit to get on the slopes and two, because I was about to leave for my very first ski lesson. Now that I have survived : A: with all my bones intact, B: riding a quad-lift to what I felt would surely be my doom and C: a huge deli sandwich, (not necessarily in that order) I believe I will be back for more.
We started our planning of this trip just after the holidays. A fella that my husband works with owns a condo slope-side in this picturesque place and was kind enough to rent it out for us to use. We shared the weekend with my brother-in-law, sister-in-law and three nephews. We grew excited with each passing week looking forward to spending much needed family-fun time.
We finally made it to travel week and that is when the nerves arrived. The snow that we normally receive each year has been pretty non-existent, of course, that is, until the day before we were to leave for our trip. The kids were treated to a snowday after 12+ inches fell and to help my packing and preparation (yes, I say this with a sarcastic tongue) the power decided to go out….ALL DAY. Needless to say, the kids were in their glory building snow caves and sledding and I packed our stuff while adding layers to keep warm. Thankfully, the power was restored around 6pm and I could dry all their snow gear and shed a few layers as the house returned to its cozy temp.
Thankfully, Mother Nature kept her humor in check and allowed us to drive through only rain for most of the trip. When we reached Killington, she just could not help herself and let loose with the snow and slush making the pass over the mountain pretty dicey.
We finally made it to our destination. The mountain and the view was real and it was spectacular (yes, a little Seinfeld in here for ya).
After getting settled we decided to go exploring for a bite to eat while waiting for the rest of the family to arrive. We came upon a place called “Mutha Stuffers” (a term I would certainly rephrase on the mountain the next day) which was a rustic deli that created the most delicious sub sandwiches I think I have ever had. They were huge. I could only make my way through half and was completely stuffed. How my kids managed to eat the whole thing and not throw up is beyond me. As I checked out the back room (where we ended up sitting) I noticed that the Olympic spirit was alive and well with this photo on the wall:
The games were into their final week and I was actually grateful for a bit of a reprieve, if only to catch up on a few winks of much needed sleep. After seeing this poster I was itching to get back to the condo to check out the latest results. However, that quickly passed as I turned to the other wall and saw this screen print:
Bob Marley let me in on a little secret. Skiing would be fun and not the disaster I had envisioned. I let out a long, heavy sigh, and knew in that moment that for this trip my mantra would be “Don't worry about a thing, every little thing is gonna be alright”. My nerves were fading.
The rest of the family made it and after a great hearty meal and a few hours of games and chatting we all hit the sack to wake early for the slopes.
So the next morning we woke to the sun shining and lots of eager beavers to get going. After a quick breakfast and blog post, my daughter and I arrived for our 2-hour lesson, my nephew his snowboarding lesson, my sister-in-law for her snowshoeing tour, and the rest of the boys at the chair lift to ski the time away.
Our lesson was full of true first timers- 5 in all, who by the end of the day would be kindered spirits. We each learned how to side-step up the hill, how to “make a pizza wedge” and to trust that when you wanted to go left, put pressure on right and vise-versa. We learned how to ride a “magic carpet”; a rubber conveyor belt that would bring you up the hill, and how to maneuver on and off a chair lift. Confidence grew with each run and by the end of the lesson, my daughter and I felt pretty good about swishing down the slope. My husband asked if we wanted to go a little higher on the hill we were on. My daughter and I were a little hesitant, but after hearing that it would be exactly the same, just a longer trip, we said sure. Getting on the quad lift chair was a little scary; it was much faster than the one we were used to on the bottom half of the beginner slope and the ride was faster too. We got to the top and and started down. My daughter and I both realized that this was a huge mistake. The pitch of the hill was much steeper and the hills were covered in packed icy snow. We made it down the first hill and I could feel my body totally tense up, hunch forward and I felt as though I was making “pizza wedges” as if my life depended on it. My daughter ended up falling backwards and was afraid to get back up. We were both completely terrified. Through gritted teeth I seethed at my husband “We were not ready for this. This is too much for today.” His reply “You look good in those ski pants”, which of course did not go over as well as he thought it would. I glared at him and was thinking: get me off this Mutha Stuffer hill! (of course, my favorite sandwhich shop name was rephrased). I decided that this was not fun AT ALL and took my boots out of the skis. My daughter did the same and we walked down the hill. We made it to the half-way point and the scenery became familiar again with the bottom part of the slope we spent our afternoon on in front of us. I put my skis back on and said to my daughter “We can do it from here- we've skied this part all day.”
That was the end of day one. I skied right to the bottom and waited. My husband came up to me and said “Sorry, I really thought it would have been the same all the way up. You did awesome.” Now that I was safely on flat terrain, I gave him a kiss and said “That was way too much for today.” with a genuine smile.
The next day we decided to return to the beginner hill and my sister-in-law joined us. To ski for the entire day on this part of the mountain would only cost us $15.00 for the lift ticket! That's cheaper than a movie! So, with fresh lift ticket attached we had another day full of fun.
My daughter found a side trail that brought us all the way down to the chair lift and we did this run quite a bit. On day two, she was ready to go back to the place we were the day before and try it again. Me? I was not taking any chances and was very happy just staying put.
We ended our trip with a night out on the farm. Literally. We visited Lareau Farm, home of the famous organic American Flatbread Pizza. Here, cooks create their own masterpieces on organic dough with amazing concoctions of mushrooms, cheese, sausage, onion, etc. and bake it to perfection in their special brick oven. It was fabulous.