(not my top priority but the most immediate and achievable thing on my list right now)
As we only have three full days skiing, there’s no time to muck around.
Day 1 is a blizzard, hence a write-off. I don’t care; I have two more days.
Day 2. Full of confidence I head up Summit Chair. A little background information. This isn’t a death wish. I can ski. In fact, one of my instructors even went so far as to call me a natural. (Beaming from the compliment, I failed to tell him this was actually my fifth time in the beginners’ class). Additional background information – I have no sense of direction. This isn’t an exaggeration, I get lost playing Super-Mario Kart.
Falls Creek is not really first-time-user friendly: the lifts and pomas, directions, even the whole ski in, ski out of your lodge/apartment thing (all fine and good once you know how to ski but not the best way to get down to the chairlift if you’ve never done it before). This side, the advanced side, is all new to me. I’ve never been up the lifts or down the slopes and I’m on my own. I follow the markers to the end, to where Wishing Well should be.
It’s Roller Coaster (I know that now…) – a very narrow, steep, moguly black run. The name says it all. I’ll spare you the boring details (which I’ve forgotten anyway in an act of self-preservation memory suppression) only to say I end up perched on a mogul with one ski off, trying to jam my boot back in – on a mogul (it can’t be overstated). If I slide off, a very real and immediate possibility, I’m in trouble. I don’t and am grateful I’m alive to try again tomorrow.
Day 3. Up Summit Chair again. This time I take the kids. At eight and ten, not only are they better skiers than I, they’ve never got lost playing Super-Mario Kart. The run is closed and again, my sense of direction and good sense failing me, I find myself on another black run (Cabbage Patch*) with a sheer drop that stops my heart. The kids make it down and I’m pleased they’re not here to see the absolute panic on my face when I realise what I’ve gotten myself into.
*This one is number 5 on Arthur Stanley’s list of Australia’s black-diamond beauties, with Roller Coaster being another contender. (One man’s meat…)
It’s our last day and I’ve run out of chances, which is probably for the best because there are 39 more things on my list to get through, all of which I have to be alive for, so this will have to go on the fifty before fifty list.
Difficulty rating: Turns out it’s eleven out of ten
I wouldn’t call it skiing, but I did get down two of the hardest runs at Falls Creek so I’ll give myself half a point.
Score: ½ point