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The First Sigi Story By Ott Gangl
THE FIRST SIGI STORY
by Ott Gangl -- (c) copyrighted article
During and after WW-II I lived in a little village in Bavaria where our skiing consisted of hiking or more often hitching a ride up a winding road either on or behind a vehicle, milk tractor, bus, truck, etc. to the top of the hill. This town had several dozen boys and girls in the 14-18 year range who loved to ski in the winter, mostly on the weekends and during school vacations, but toward Spring, when the days were longer we could even get some runs after school let out a 2 p.m.
Also, some of the most romantic trips, cross-counntry fashion, were in the moonlit evenings and nights, with the snow glistening like diamonds, making a sound unique to cold, untracked snow being compressed under the sliding skis.
Boys and girls would sometimes laugh and chat and then we would break out into a vista which only drew silence. All the boys looked manly in the moonlight and all the girls were beautiful.
And then there was Sigi.
Sigi was the most adored, loved and envied girl in town, beautiful, tall, slim, with a shock of long blond hair often worn in a thick braid that reached down to her much admired, mmm-behind, and when she would throw her head around with this big smile on her face, eyes twinkling, you expected the braid to crack like a whip. All the boys loved her, the girls envied her, but generally everyone adored her because she unconditionally liked everyone.
Sigi was also the best skier in this bunch, by a longshot. Once a weekend we would all assemble on top of the hill which had about an 800 ft. drop if you wanted to traverse back to the road and about another couple hundred to the valley from where you had to walk out. There were many ways down, mostly on farmers fields and meadow where the only obstacles were occasional barbed wire fences, and when the snow wasn’t deep enough you had to ski through the open gates, or as we sometimes did, build a snow ramp on several places over the fence. A forest of pines and hardwood mix could be skied to the valley.
The reason for this assembly was the fox chase. I don’t want to call it a hunt because a hunt has the death of the fox at it’s end while ours was rewarded by getting to be the fox next time for the hunter who brings the fox down. All was well and good until one weekend when Sigi caught the fox and was going to be IT the following weekend. Midweek after school we were told that the girls were not going to participate because Sigi was going to reward the hunter who brings her down with a KISS....
Oh my, there was a lot of waxing going on, some boys formed alliances of how to sabotage others and all kind of other shenanigans. And who can count the wet dreams by teenaged boys who have longed for a touch or a kiss from Sigi. Heaven....
The rest of the girls strangely seemed to put their heads together with Sigi and giggling a lot.
The day finally came, it was bright and sunny and warm and Sigi came with her hair braided and a lot of varied colored ribbons woven into it, a red ski suit with the front zipper of the jacket just down enough to reveal her skin down to just a peek of her bra, oh, what a thrill...the anticipation of that kiss...
She started off across the meadows toward the woods and the rules were that we couldn’t start the chase until she disappeared in the trees a couple hundred yards away. It was flat on top and the snow was pretty tracked up so we couldn’t really follow her tracks and we wouldn’t go too fast because the fox would sometimes hide and wait until everybody was past and fool us by arriving after everybody was down and then the fox would get to be the fox again next week.
Sigi took off and partway to the woods yanked a ribbon from her braid and dropped it, then she disappeared into the trees.
We spread out and I started down somewhat left of the crowd and hoped to find Sigi hiding behind a bushy pine when I saw a colored ribbon on a branch which she had in her hair and hung out as a clue. I made slow sweeping turns looking left and right, I saw another ribbon, then another and my heart was pounding and I was salivating in anticipation of that kiss and how lucky I was that it was ME ALONE who had picked up her trace....
I followed another ribbon and then I saw it, her red parka flung over a high branch on a tree. I remembered her partially opened zipper and that Sigi was not wearing a sweater. I was sure she was just waiting for me around a tree. I was getting really excited, I mean REALLY EXCITED.
A couple more turns and there was something white on a branch, her bra! She was topless! And now I lost it, after a couple of shudders my excitement left me, I picked up the bra and skied the short distance to the bottom to join the rest of the boys.
And there was Sigi, still wearing her red jacket, with all her ribbons in her hair and with all the other girls around laughing their heads off, at me, I was sure...
As you may have guessed by now, the other girls earlier in the day had put ribbons on branches all through the woods, red jackets on trees and bras on branches just before the clearing in the valley.
And every other boy had gone through the same hopes and anticipation that I had, AND NO ONE GOT THE KISS.
I never knew before that you could hate someone so intensely, someone whom you loved so much.
But not for long....
Ott Gangl is retired as a PSIA Level-3 ski instructor after 25 years of teaching four times a week. He was a photojournalist for 35 years and his web site ( http://corrr1.com ) displays many of the classic images he has captured on film.
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