First I would like to apologize for my lack of action on this blog over the past few months. Between working full time in the snow and managing a busy lodge, socializing with the guest at night time, I have not had much time to dedicate to writing at all. My fickle prepaid stick connection allowed me to post one story I had prepared earlier on a “good reception day” off. Despite that, I was pleased to still see regular visitors reading my stories and would like to thank everyone that stuck by me.
I did find a moment of inspiration again while doing the towies lunch relief shift, sitting in the top lift hut for an hour. That is the only time that I get a chance during my working day to “zone out” and relax to some degree, while keeping an eye on the poma’s and making sure they retract properly and not tangle around the cable, which would stop the lift until the technicians come down to fix it again. Besides that I also make sure the few midday guests get off okay.
I love looking at the view over the valley’s and the sky from this tiny hut on top of the hill. In all the years I have worked there, I have started to notice a pattern in the weather, about which I wrote this recent poem:
Wispy clouds looking like a feather,
talk to me about a change in the weather.
Next, the wind will come,
which can be quite scary for some.
Trees will blow over, branches will snap,
lifts will close and powder lovers… will clap!
For they all know that what comes after,
is the cause of so much fun and laughter.
They weather the storm just knowing,
their turns in the Powder will soon be flowing.
Big airs aloft,
with landings real soft.
Get your bases waxed,
because you know what is coming next!
Yes, we did get some nasty storms this season, with one blowing over at least 6 trees across the track I use to get from the lodge to the main road and back. Thankfully this happened while I was at work and no one got hurt, but it did make for an adventurous trip home, attempting to get through. Lucky there was only one massive old gum tree, that left just enough room around the hole, where the roots used to be, to create a new path around it. Most of the others were small enough to drive over the thinner branches on the end of the trees. I stopped to try and drag one a bit more out of the way, because the branches were a little high and I was concerned they might snap and bounce back up, damaging the car in the process. As I did this, I was surprised to see headlights coming up behind me. Someone else as crazy as me tackling a four wheel drive track with obstacles in the dark! It was my friend and neighbor, who came through to check out if it was passable, because his partner had to go to work that night. I was pleased he turned up and helped me, because the tree was a lot heavier than I would have thought looking at it from the car. After saying my thanks and goodbye we both proceeded to drive home, grateful we made it there safely.
As I looked around the house, it became clear that this storm had been the worst one I had seen in all those seasons I had lived there. I found the cover of the chimney in the middle of the driveway with the pipe almost in the dam below the house. The couch, that used to be under the roof on the back deck had moved itself over to the deck behind the woodshed. The recently emptied recycling bin was completely missing, despite the fact that I had weighted it down with a few logs on top before I left for work in the morning. The old broken washing machine that had been up against the wall on another deck, awaiting a trip to the tip, was almost falling off the edge and the lid had detached itself and was a long way up the drive! There was a tree across the main drive to the house (I came up the other one) and a few more down around the house. I was so glad there was not more damage to the house! After I was satisfied with my efforts of tidying up for the night , I put my torch back in the car and made myself something for dinner.
The next morning I woke up to the pleasant surprise of fresh snow on the ground. Despite now being an adult, this still gives me the same excitement as when I was a child growing up in Europe. For those that have never seen snow, the closest thing to this feeling I can think about is when you wake up early as a child on Christmas Day to find Santa has visited and there are so many presents under the tree, you don’t know which one to open first! Snow on the ground may make the drive to work a little more hazardous, but the fun of playing or working in fresh snow far outweighs this issue. You just know that it is only there for a short time and have to enjoy it while it lasts.
This is not unlike life itself, where everyone has to get through numerous storms, but once the storm clears, we have to see and grab the opportunities it leaves us at the right time. As a result we can get exited about life again and look forward to this new chapter with gratitude. For if it was not for the storms in our lives, we would not appreciate and enjoy the good times as much!
I am so glad the storms of the past Winter season brought us so much fresh snow! It allowed me the to get plenty of work, complete my level 2 Alpine certificate, meet loads of beautiful new friends and guests and ski more miles than in any other season before. Of course practice makes perfect, so I also enjoyed it even more with my newly learned improved techniques.
Please share your thoughts on storms in your life in the comments below. I look forward to reading them!