Did You Ever…?


Did I mention I grew up in the jungle? The Amazon jungle? Well, I did. Basically that’s my excuse for everything.

“Didn’t you watch [insert 70s/80/90s TV show here] when you were a kid?”

-“No, I grew up in the jungle.”

“Did you take [pottery/auto mechanics/philosophy etc.] in school?”

-“No, I grew up in the jungle.”

“Did you go to [day care/vacation bible school/sports camp etc.]?

-“No, I grew up in the jungle.”

See? it works. So when the husband of my good friend from college, Val, emailed and asked if I would come to Vail for a birthday ski weekend, my answer was: “No, I grew up in the jungle.”


Not really. But I had never skiied ever, ever in my life.

I actually thought I would just come and hang out at the lodge, or do whatever-it-is-that-you-do-when-you-don’t-ski in a ski town. But when I told my sister of my plan, she encouraged me to try it, just for the experience.

So I rented the boots; I bought the lift ticket; I paid for a lesson.


1) Walking in ill-fitting ski boots is horrible. (Though I suspect walking in ski boots period is awful.)

2) Snow is slippery.

3) Making a pizza shape with skis is not as easy as it sounds.


Before my lesson, Val and I trekked to a bunny hill to practice. Walking there in the boots was the worst part of the whole day. I was giving myself motivational speeches the whole way.

When we got there, she said, “Follow me!” and the next thing I knew the lift was whacking the back of my knees and I fell into a sitting position. “Val, what do I do now?” I asked. “Just keep your skis in the shape of a pizza slice, and jump off when we get to the top.”


So I fell down immediately, and continued falling all the way down the hill. Two experienced skiers plus one super-super-novice equals no fun for anyone. But that’s not the end of the story.


I headed to the other side of the mountain for my paid-for lesson. Along with about seven others, an instructor taught me the basics: where to place my skis, how to lean my body. By the end of the afternoon, I was (somewhat confidently) gliding down the hill at the top of the mountain, hopping on the lift, getting off somewhat gracefully and gliding down again, all on my own. It was fun! And I’d do it again, especially if it was free.

So now, there is no more “I grew up in the jungle” excuse about not skiing. Instead, the answer is a wholehearted yes!



One thought on “Did You Ever…?

  1. I knew you would love it!! You will have to come out again so that you can practice you new found love for skiing. And, since you can’t claim the jungle anymore, I expect to see you out here!! You were very kind to call me experienced! You didn’t see me bite it in the afternoon…oh dear! I was so happy you were there! 🙂

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