After a hectic week last week in Chicago, I flew up to Toronto for the weekend to see my sis and her hubby-to-be. The temperature on arrival was freezing – even by the standards of the previous week it was a bit of a shock to the system.
After a fairly quiet night and sluggish morning we headed out to the Glen Eden ski resort situated about 40 minutes from York Mills, where I was staying. The ski resort is relatively compact and popular given its proximity to Toronto. It was packed with people from the very young to the very old. The queue to get our gear was long, but eventually I made it to the front where I got fitted out for boots, skis and poles. I was ready to go.
We started out on some very small nursery slopes but I quickly got bored of it. Even though I collapsed spectacularly quite a few times, I wanted something a bit more challenging, so we crossed the road towards the “grown-up” slopes. Nursery shmursery.
A ski-lift brought us to the top of the slope. I soon found that I could only ski in two ways: a) bat-out-of-hell mode and b) crumpled-up-in-a-pile mode. Bat-out-of-hell mode was easy. I would just point my skis ahead of me and go for it, picking up speed all the time. I would keep going faster and faster down the hill until quite suddenly I would switch over into the much less satisfactory crumpled-up-in-a-pile mode. This usually involved a quite ungainly somersault involving the loss of skis, poles and hats followed by the nightmare task of attempting to get upright again. Most of my ski-attempts involved both techniques, and I got quite good at them by the end of the day.
I would be an excellent skier if it were not for two small itsy-bitsy flaws. 1) I can’t brake and 2) I can’t steer. Otherwise all is well. I’m sure I would be a champion at rudderless kamikase skiing. Also, if there a prize for the most awkward looking skiier, I would be well in contention. My sister told me that it was amazing that I could stay upright for so long given my unorthodox style of leaning back on the skis with my knees and legs bent in a particularly unattractive fashion.
When it comes to skiing I am absolutely fearless. I am also absolutely clueless. A dangerous combination, I think.
We were absolutely wrecked by the end of the day. I had a very pleasant Indian meal in Burlington followed by a few drinks close to my sister’s apartment.
On Sunday, I headed into town with my sister to a shopping centre in Dundas for a spot of shopping. It’s a lot safer than skiing. I didn’t fall down once. I’ll wait to see the size of my credit card bill before I do that..
I had a relatively uneventful flight back home (well, I *did* lose my passport and my car keys, but enough said about that) and I’m back safe, sound and jet-lagged in Ireland. The weather is moist, relatively warm and there’s not even a hint of snow. I’m missing Toronto already.