I was a bit apprehensive about going by myself without Glen or any of the other Aussies we know in the club but I got over it.
It was an early start, getting up at 6 to get to the pick-up point by 7:15. Toronto was being coated with heavy snow so that meant everything took a little longer because the roads were a bit treacherous.
There was only bus this time and it was full. In fact, it was over full by about three people. I chatted to the guy next to me for a bit and then drifted off to sleep for a little while.
We arrived at Georgian Peaks Ski Club a little after ten, I hired ski equipment and then joined up with the other people having lessons. Through a bit of sleight of hand (not mine), I had an instructor all to myself, a 77 year old Italian guy called Roberto.
We bonded over the Italian thing. He thought my family might have come from Abruzzo but we’re from Vicenza (Veneto) and he said that apparently people from Vicenza are called mangigatti (cat eaters). He didn’t say it in an offensive way, just that he’d heard that’s what they were called. I’ve never heard that saying before. I wonder if Dad has.
Anyway, I had a fantastic lesson. Roberto was clear with his instructions, encouraging and free with praise. There was obvious progression through the lesson from one exercise to the next so that by the end I was turning in parallel.
I was so pleased. It actually felt like skiing. The slopes are next to empty so there was no wait for the chair lifts and we got lots of runs in. As a result I was completely buggered by lunchtime, after doing drills down the hill. My thighs!
The greens here are not like the greens elsewhere so there was a bit more of a steep slope, particularly at the start, and Roberto took me down a blue, which felt really steep to me but I survived it.
After lunch, there weren’t any lessons, or if there were, I didn’t take one. I set off to consolidate what I’d learned. I did lots of runs down the green slope. I think it was in parallel for just about all of it, even when turning.
This resulted in me going a lot faster than I was used to so it’s going to take a little bit more practice to get used to it.
And to finish off I went down the steep blue one last time, my heart beating fast but I kept speaking aloud what I had to do (mostly don’t let up on the pressure on the downhill ski) and made it to the bottom (with only one minor fall).
I’ve definitely done my legs’ workout for the week, what with dog sledding, ice skating and skiing.
Roberto did say he could move me into level 4 but I said I’d stay in 3 until the next lesson because who knows how much I will have forgotten by the next ski lesson.
So in all it’s been a wonderful day. Even though it snowed in Toronto and was foggy most of the way up here, the skies were clear on the hill. We had a clear view across the frozen water in the bay and the place just looks so stunning and peaceful.
The only thing that could have made it better was if Glen were here too. Apart from that, it was great and I really am very lucky.