“If your going to fall…do it with dignity and grace……or failing that, do it with as big a slam as possible! If you ain’t falling, you ain’t trying!” – Anonymous
Ok, that title is laughable I know. I’m OBVIOUSLY not even comparable to Shaun White.
My good friend has been trying to get me out snowboarding for a while and yesterday we finally packed up the loads of gear needed and drove the three hours to the mountains. California has had an unusual amount of rain lately, which resulted in a TON of snow on the mountains. I was excited to break in the holiday week with some snow. Living in San Diego, I haven’t seen snow at Christmas since I moved from South Dakota five years ago. I missed it so much…but after one solid day in it, I think I’m good! Enough snow! I don’t miss it anymore!
To start, let me comment that snowboarding is a major production. Starting with the crack of dawn wake up, the layering of clothes, getting/renting the gear, driving all the way up there, waiting in a long queue of cars since everyone and their grandma went snowboarding yesterday, and then finally waiting for our lift tickets we were finally ready to go at about 11am.
Now…snowboarding is not even close to as easy as it looks! Who ever knew that it was a skill just to stand up on that damn board! It is tough when you lose the independent function of your legs. The smallest alter in balance to the front or back had me crashing on my ass… HARD! I was so frustrated trying the same thing over and over with little progress. Grr… I like things I can pick up quickly. I looked around for a moment, though, and noticed that everyone else (on the Bunny Slope) was in the same boat as me. Grown men and women…constantly on their ass, wiping out beside me. Ahhh, it’s true, misery surely does love company.
It was hard work standing up just to fall in 15 seconds! Ouch! Over and over and over I fell. My friends were trying to tell me that would happen my first time, but I didn’t know they meant it so literally when they said, “You will fall, like, a thousand times.” Once I “mastered” standing and turning around, I managed a couple good runs down the hill. I will note that the falling hurts much more when you get going fast! After the final, head-rattling fall…I was done. My wrists were super sore from bracing my falls (useless damn legs) and I knew I was developing major bruises on my ass, hips, back, etc. I should go with skiing. *Sigh* To add insult to injury…there were little kids (6-7 years olds) flying by me on their boards! WTF! I console myself thinking its because they are lighter and closer to the ground!
I spent the final hour and a half (while my friends were on the ‘real’ slopes) waiting at the bar while my extremities slowly began to thaw out. At least Mountain High makes for great people watching. The more I saw people fall, the more I felt a bit better about myself….that it was natural and I wasn’t quite as lame as I felt. Then I would look up to the Double-Black-Diamond slopes… and tremble in fear. How in the world do all those guys (and girls) get that comfortable on that demon-board?! I looks fun though and I can’t wait to get better and fly down the slopes!
In the meantime, I currently need to massage my tight, sore muscles and recover the ability to bend my wrists without pain. Ahhhh….if only I was Shaun White.