A Skiing holiday- the ugly truth ( over 50s perspective)

Published by Amanda on

I’m sat in an apartment looking at a foggy, snowy mountainside and it’s the best day of my holiday so far. I feel terrible saying this but …I don’t like skiing.

I had my first lesson at 30 years of age. I was with a group of friends who all skied. My husband had skied only once before but he learnt quickly and was pretty good by the time we left. I, on the other hand, spent most of my time on my bottom.

Since then, I have been on many skiing holidays and proceeded to fall off everything; chairlifts and button lifts, the stairs up to and from the chairlifts, steep runs after my first turn and off pistes when the visibility was zero. But remarkably I have escaped with only bruises and sprains and the embarrassing jeers of onlookers.

‘So why do you go skiing?” I hear all you sensible people say.
“For everyone else. For my friends, for my husband, for my kids.”

When you are surrounded by people who love skiing you can’t admit the ugly truth.

For some people skiing is not fun. And this is what it is really like.

It’s early mornings, getting hot in all layers of clothing needed for when you finally get on the slope. It’s struggling to get ski boots on and then walking like an Egyptian mummy. It’s the bun fight to get on the bus with your mummified legs, with your skis and poles trying not to get tangled up with everyone’s else skis and poles. It’s the race you find yourself in to get to the cable car lift. It’s the 15 person wide queue that forms at the 4 person entrance which you are definitely going to be in for the next 20 minutes, physically getting warmer and warmer as people squash up against you in a manner which would be considered inappropriate in any other setting, except maybe a crowded tube. You watch and seethe as from behind youths (and some middle aged people) push their way around the outside and manage to get through before you. And when finally you have ridden to the top of the mountain, all hot and sweaty, you exit onto a blizzard blowing you backwards and then have to find a space, put your skis on and fight with the hundreds of people all trying to get down the mountain to do the whole thing all over again.

Do you have time to take in the spectacular view? No, you do not.
Do you appreciate the clean air you can now breathe? No, you do not.
Do you feel the closeness of being with your family/friends? No, do you not.
Do you appreciate the feeling of finding your own path and the freedom to do so? No you do not.

You do however appreciate the overpriced hot chocolate ( that you would never pay for back home) when you stop for a rest.
You do appreciate feeling your feet again when you take your ski boots off.
You do appreciate that one day of sunshine when you’re sat in a deckchair that reminds you, you are actually on holiday.
And you do appreciate the sleep at the end of the day as you’re completely knackered.

So now I’ve admitted the ugly truth. Yes, I am middle aged and don’t have the energy for such warfare anymore and maybe I’m the only person who thinks like this but I have a feeling I’m not alone. Please let me know that I’m right.



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