Friday, March 11, 2016


On Saturday, it snowed heavily all day, then all night. So Sunday, I headed up the closest mountain with a powder ski instructor. He was very reasonably priced, as things go here in Switzerland - a coffee and a fat slice of cake. He kept me safe, showed me the way, and laughed with me, not at me; which I value highly at this stage in my ski career.

Despite all my hours of trying, and my passion for the sport, I am not a great skier. I'd so love to be, but I learn and improve slowly. It took much swallowing of pride to put myself in front of such a good skier, and to ski badly; but as he pointed out, you don't learn if you don't put yourself out there.

He took me down through the trees in a forest I'd long wanted to ski. We did the same run over and over. He chewed up the sides, getting closer and closer to the trees as the middle powder got used up. I chewed up whatever I could, including literally, at least one deeply planted face full of snow. Staying upright was the big victory, and sometimes I even made a few fluid turns.

My confidence grew with every lap.

I came out at the bottom of the slope caked in powder due to falls.
He came out caked in powder due to skiing like a hero through body deep snow. Good teachers teach by instructing and inspiring.

We laughed most of the day. That's a great way to learn. And he sang, a lot. I'm not sure he realised that, too busy working out which way we should ski next. But you can be pretty sure that a man is loving his work when he sings aloud as he goes.

As for me, I'm now a powder addict, waiting for the next big dump, and five days later, still rehearsing the new ski tips in my mind.


Find something you're passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it.
~ Julia Child

Sunday, February 14, 2016


I don't tend to get tired of snowy winters. Nor of pink sunrise mornings across mountains.

Snow inspires me to get up, go out and use it, especially when it is freshly fallen and pillowy. I find it such a great privilege.

Sometimes, when I'm up the mountain, and the sun breaks through a day of cloud ...

... and everything is painted new ...

... when no one is watching ...

... and my skis feel a little bit cheeky, and wide enough to float on endless powder;

Then, I have this huge urge on the way back home...

... to turn off the road ...

... past every home ...

... through gardens, farms and fences ...

... And so I do.

Just because I can ... and it's like a dream...

... until the sun sets again.