This past weekend Deer Valley Resort opened with their Celebrity Skifest. I was in Los Angeles, so missed the event, and on my return, I spent Monday catching up on work. By Tuesday I was so ready to get on the slopes. I went into my garage and took stock of my equipment. Skis? Check. Boots? Check. Poles? Check. Goggles? Check. Helmet? Check. Gloves? Check. Glove liners? Check. Fanny pack? Check. Season pass? Check. I threw everything into my boot bag, which also contains a knitted cap, a face mask, and a headband reading, “Stowe,” given to me by my sister-in-law who used to live in Vermont.
By the time I was through, I wanted a cup of coffee. I wasn’t tired. Frankly, I was intimidated. It has been years since I’ve skied on a regular basis, and I was concerned about all the paraphernalia. What if I couldn’t carry everything? What if I forgot something at home? What if I got to the top of Bald Mountain and realized that I’d left my lunch pass in a locker 9400 feet below?
When I arrived at the resort I was greeted by the familiar sounds of waterproof clothes rustling and heavy boots thunking on wooden flooring. I soon found that everything I needed fit in the pockets of my parka. After I traded my snow boots for ski boots, I locked up my bag and went to the lift and skied for two hours straight, foregoing lunch. The conditions were excellent: groomed slopes on a good base, billowy clouds set in a turquoise sky, warm sun on my face. (Well, as much of my face as it could find, given the helmet, goggles, turtleneck and sunblock.)
When I ended my intentionally short first day, I gave my skis and boots over to free overnight checking, and left the building much less encumbered than when I had arrived. On the way home I thought about another encumbrance, namely the emotional energy I had wasted earlier. I try to think of myself as the type of person who is not given to anxiety, but I clearly was, that morning. I am now working on internalizing the Brooklyn Girl Scout motto: “Be prepared, then fuggedaboudit!”
(Originally published 12/9/10)