February 1, 2008
This past week we've gotten a lot of snow. School was out all week and there are piles of snow in our yard higher than my waist (and my waist is pretty high). We've had to dig out our cars and maintain little parking areas carved out of the snow banks in front of our house. While there have been incessant updates on road conditions on the local new, I think it has been quite fun. I have always liked snow, but over the past few years as I have started skiing again, I've developed a real obsession with it. So last Saturday morning, when the snow started to dump, I was very excited. I bounced around the house Saturday afternoon watching it start to pile up. It kept snowing all afternoon and evening. When I came home from work at 11:30 pm (I was working the evening shift all week) it was still coming down. When I got up early Sunday morning it was still snowing hard. I'd look out the window, then look at the all weather station doppler radar to see if it was going to stop soon. But it didn't. It just kept snowing. By mid morning it was clear that there was a lot of snow on the ground. Church was cancelled and it was officially time to go outside. After doing a good 45 minutes of shoveling, the front walk and sidewalk were cleared. We got the kids suited up and strapped the snow shoes on for a walk to the park. Sal rode in the sled as we made our way through an ocean of deep snow. A few stretches of sidewalk were clear from conscientious home owners, but the snow was quickly filling in again. We swam around in the snow at the park, the kids rode down a few hills on the sled, and we headed home.
Then came Monday. The stars were aligned and karma was smiling down on me. I had the day off. There were over two feet of new snow at the local resort. There was blue sky and sunshine. It was a Monday and the local ski hill was empty. I had just gotten my skis tuned and waxed.
So I got up early and drove up to Mt. Spokane to ski. Do you remember that feeling you would get right after the final bell on the last day of school? That electric feeling of liberation? The smile you didn't realize was plastered to your face as you ran home to get started on your summer vacation, even though you had no idea what you were going to do with the rest of your day? That was how I felt for a solid three hours as I made first tracks again and again and again. It was one of those experiences where the essence of the moment was strong enough to soak in for hours.
Luckily I had my little cell phone camera with my.
Uncharacteristically I snapped a few pictures. Here is my first ride
up. What you probably can't appreciate is the untouched powder, smooth
and deep, on the hill below.
The next photo is at the top of a glade on my third or fourth run.
What the camera phone doesn't show are the tracks below that I made
The third photo is from the bottom of my first run. Again, I don't
think you can make out my tracks, but that is what I was trying to
And the last photo, well, probably doesn't need much explanation.
So all in all it was a great morning,
Then tragedy. Well, not really tragedy, but the day ended sooner
than I wanted when I missed a turn, went over head first, landed on my
upper back, and folded like a taco. Somehow I hit my lower left rib
cage against my abdomen or spine or something, and either broke the
cartilaginous part of my ribs, or severely bruised them.
was in pain and couldn't ski anymore. So, tail between my legs, I
limped home. The good new is the x-rays didn't show any broken bones
and I healed quickly (so quick that 4 days later Veep and I got a
sitter and did some night skiing in about another new foot of snow).
And of course here's the proof.
In case you were wondering, the little bb marker on the second x-ray is where it hurt.