Yesterday, one Hicks brother, his daughter, my wife, and this goofy one completed three days of skiing. The last day was the most successful and most enjoyable. We all skied (okay, Maureen: i looked it up and “skied” is the preferred spelling for the past tense according to Miriam-Webster) better and longer.
i even branched off and skied the Roamer trail and Big Stick. i finally adapted to the rented boots and skis enough to take a few good spills.
Maureen is an excellent skier and cautious.
Alan is a graceful skier enjoyable to watch in his turns.
Eleanor is the most accomplished skier by a large margin in our foursome; She was beautiful to watch in her support of the three of us, especially Alan and me when we needed help. Eleanor, for me, is simply a joy to be around in any setting. I feel like i have another daughter.
i ski like i have lived: barging down the mountain on the edge of falling most of the time, never graceful, and pretty much always on the edge of disaster. Again as in my life, i fall well, and unfortunately, often.
The last day of good skiing was, for me, much needed. My confidence was shaken after the miserable second day, made delightful only by the company i kept. i felt old, real old at the end of the day. Risk assessment, an almost non-existent part of my skiing until this year, became prominent in my approach. i worried about not being able to get up from my frequent falls.
But yesterday after a couple of falls produced a tweak in my left oblique and a swollen left thumb, i was on our last run. Maureen had called it quits a couple of runs earlier. Alan was doing his graceful bit with Eleanor trailing on “Last Chance,” an appropriately named intermediate run to the base of Deer Valley.
Barging ahead, i was working on paralleling and quick turns when i took a rather spectacular slide and losing both of my skis. After an unknown trailing skier retrieved the uphill ski and Eleanor caught up and blocked any downhill slide, i was up, back in the skis, and off for a final descent to Snow Park Lodge.
It seemed i was me again. This morning, the aches have almost disappeared, and i wish i could ski one more day. Our three days of skiing have been mostly overcast, mostly with snow falling, delightful in a special way. Today as we leave, the mountain is supposed to be infused with sunshine. Deer Valley is beautiful in its coat of snow in the sunshine, and the groomed slopes show off their superiority when snow does not fall after the groomers finish their night time tasks around 4:00 am. i would have liked to ski in those conditions.
Last night, we walked Main Street, and ate at Bandits, a far cry from the upper end of dining the previous three nights. It is a rustic setting boasting of its barbecue and tri-tip, deservedly so. This morning, we will say our goodbyes, and shuttle down the mountains to the grey of Salt Lake City and our flights home.
Around 4:30 yesterday afternoon, we waited for our shuttle from Snow Park Lodge in the median of the skier’s drop off and pick up station. i looked back at the runs. Good bye, Deer Valley. See you next year.