THIS IS HOW IT STARTED
This season has been one of the best(they all are), and not because of the epic snow conditions. This year was something new (actually old). I have skied, like many, since I was three years old. I was a spoiled kid with parents that could afford to put in me in a ski school for three years (Alts Youth Club). After so much time spent around the resorts and too much mortal fear to leave them, I became bored with skiing. The culture I loved about the ski resorts was gone, replaced by a new style. I didnt like what I saw and I didnt care to join in.
I remember being frustrated at being told to jump on the parabolic band wagon. I couldnt figure out why. I already skied better than most and I didnt feel I needed to improve by switching to a ski that made skiing easier. Inspired by pictures of Dean Cummings and Wendy Fisher, I bought a pair of Soloman X Screams when they first hit the stores. I was pissed. Other than I looked like my role models, I hated them, but over time I learned to accept this is the way it is. I hardly skied during these years and I began to lose touch with what I used to love.
SOMEWHERE IN THE MIDDLE
After marrying, I found a new love for skiing. It was not the skis, the jackets, or the great snow. It was giving my passion for skiing to some one else. My wife was not blessed with a natural talent, but a drive and love for skiing that I rarely see. I was refreshed and could feel alive on a pair of skis again. In our three years of marriage she progressed from a timid intermediate to an aggressive advanced skier and I loved helping every step of the way. I got new skis, new gear, and a new passion in skiing, but something, just a little something was still missing.
This year I got a wild idea to push my wife a little. I spend way too much time watching movies like HOT DOG, Aspen Extreme, and Blizzard. I decided why change with the times. Skiing culture has changed and so has the gear, but I was just as good on long boards as I am on my AC3s. I put my wife on a pair of 193's and myself on a pair of 210's. I found what was missing.
My wife and I now spend a good amount of time riding up the lift listening to people talk about the old days of long skis or like most they tell us we would be better off hanging them on a wall. I live to hear people talk about how great our long boards are gonna be over on "you name it" the freshly groomed slope. I tell them we are heading for some mogul practice today and that, unfortunately ends the conversation. We just smile and laugh as we exit the lift, we know how to have a good time. It will be on the groomed run practicing our best Brice and TJ from Aspen extreme, in the powder practicing our powder eights, or more recently in the moguls hitting twisters, back scratchers and slow dog noodles.
WHAT I LEARNED
I very rarely find the old time ski culture of functional lift lines, double chairs and talking about the good lines. I hear mostly about investing, promiscuity at the work place and how bad they guy next to me smells. I dont see people skiing in much that isnt just the latest trend or the newest, coolest, ski gear. I spent years learning to hate the new, learning to hate skiing, getting frustrated....I was wrong. I found what I had lost in my late teens. I lost sharing what I love with others. Funny that It took getting on a pair of long boards to enhance my experience and let me remember what it is I love about skiing. Hopefully some of you remember how fun it is to just go ski and not let all those frustrating..."you name it" stop you from having the fun you should.
I hope this was at least entertaining.