skiing 2016

Sunset over Buller
Sunset over Buller

So, my father-in-law has always said a week at the snow is like taking a month off life.

Neither my shins, nor my bank manager, would speak to me if we had a week away on the ski slopes. So we settled on 3 days of white wonder. Plenty enough time to let us all get a few coloured runs under our belt and in doing so, publicly display every emotion we – as a collective – have.

Day 1 on a snow covered mountain is never easy. The snow looks all white and fluffy. When really it’s just hard and cold. Day 1 is about getting your base-bruise on your shins and lowering your expectations of blissful off-piste powder. The aim is to simply get down Bourke street on limited oxygen consumption and without having a limb removed by a beginner snow-boarder.

Day 1 for our crew involved the commencement of a swear jar, a medial co-lateral tear and my wingman’s front tooth getting knocked out by my ski pole.

With maybe a little bit of malice.

Yep, there are high points and low points when your crew tries to conquer a mountain. There are highlights and lowlights when your all trying to get down from the top to the bottom. There are moments of celebration backed up by moments of frustrations.
And loads of silent sideways moments in between.

It took 3 days to learn that to get down we had to go sideways. We learned to face the slopes with our heart and created our own runs that wove through the trees. And after our days of white wonder, despite the premature tooth fairy, the panadeine forte and the outrage over the cost of a hot chocolate, we – as a collective – cuddled into each other and left the mountain. My blissed-out crew sprawled out across each other.

We took up the whole back seat of the bus.

There weren’t many words to say. It felt like we had said them all.
There weren’t many things to pack. It felt like we’d un-packed them all.

Our time criss-crossing the mountain left us with sharing a woven thread of contentment. One that seemed to connect each of us through our tired shiny souls. We had all concentrated and conquered our journeys. We had done so together from the top to the bottom. It had taken the one-pointed awareness that comes form paying complete attention to where you are heading.
And realising that it helps to move side-ways to get to where you’re going.

Think spinal twists, side openers and chair pose.

It’s a complete misconception to think that our journey holds a path way that is direct. One that we move from A to B on a straight trajectory of 5 year plans. Our journeys, like our bodies, are designed to move in spirals. It is our sideways movement that make us hold our attention completely. We control the shifts in our direction while we continually work to face forward. Using the intelligence of mindful, weight-loading rotation. It creates a foundation from which we can balance our body, control our speed and lean towards where we are heading. Our pathway unfolds before us as we step up to ourselves and tread on it.
With clarity even though at times we couldn’t see.

With courage even though at times we were not sure.

And with faith even though at times we were lost.

Our 3 days in our white wonderland was magic. My shins are bruised, my arse is sore and my bank manager is albeit reluctantly, returning my calls. Despite the extremes of the conditions and the harsh angles of our emotions, my crew all seem somehow calmer. We have all come down our own mountain. Making our way from the top to the bottom.

Grateful to have been skiing sideways through the trees.


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