Today was as surreal as they come. I woke up exhausted, but in a good way (aside from the fluish ness), like I had given every single ounce of energy I could to the exam, and now I was just flat out empty. But happy. Everything moved slower today, things felt strange, quiet...
I went up to the hill and ran into Alex and Shannon, and we got geared up to go ski. I decided to take out my fat skis since I've been on the Magfires for the last three weeks (a crime in this deep pow!), and it was spectacular. I rode around on the Elan Deep Spice for next season, and my skiing has changed SO much since I got them, I could actually make them function like they are supposed to! Quick to turn, floaty, stiff off the jumps and into the bumps, I was skiing around thinking to myself, "I did it. I am full cert. I am a full cert instructor, because I am a good enough skier to be full cert." Wow. I couldn't quite wrap my head around it, it felt like something magical had happened to my skiing, even on super tired legs, on skis I haven't been on for weeks, it was easy and fun to play in the deep deep powder that is still DUMPING up there.
Bridger is skiing on a 123" base at 12:30 today. Insane! We were going to go head over to Slauchmans and take a run on the Saddle, but instead, we just lapped Flippers and the Whirlpools, having fun watching the racers... Alex bought me breakfast, redbull and a peanut butter sandwich, and we just ripped around all morning.
I tried to think of what it meant that I had this pin, that I'd passed this test. Michael explained it to me last year this way: that I could go anywhere in the country and get a job, and that director would be able to confidently give me any client they had and know that I could take them anywhere on the mountain and show good skiing to them, the day I got there, with no explanation or examination of my skill necessary. This is amazing to me.
I feel like I have completed the prerequisites for life here, and now I can get started. I feel like now, NOW, I have a basic understanding of how the ski works and what can be done with it, and NOW I get to go out and play with that, try and figure out what it means, and how can I make it work even better? Now I get to join groups of other people who are trying to figure this out and experiment.
I'm so looking forward to going through the trainer verification process at Aspen, tackling each problem and working through it. I feel on track to my team tryout, I have a loooong way to go to get there, but I feel like the pieces are falling in to place. I can't believe that I passed. I can't believe I'm free to keep going. I feel like I've been handed the keys to the executive washroom, or something. Not that its a club, but that I demonstrated enough skill to be invited to participate in what comes next. I am just completely humbled by this, it feels like an enormous responsibility and privilege, and I feel like I'd better get to work! (right after I take this nap...)
Kate, you're an inspiration!
Thank you for sharing a bit of yourself with me this past week.
When you get a chance, tell me about the Deep Spice. I'm in the market for a fat ski :)
Hey, Tricia! I'm so bummed that we didn't get to make turns at Bridger that day!! We'll have to get together in Colorado next year. If you join the "I ski With Kate!" group, I'll keep you posted about cheap condos and little posses that are coming out to play in Aspen!
It was great to see your smiling face, thanks for all your encouragement!
The Elan Deep Spice is awesome, I have it in a 174, its more like a big mtn ski, its comfortable going fast and straight, but its also flexable enough to be really playful in the powder. It took me a few days to get used to it, but now I love love love it!!
I've ridden more traditional soft powder skis, and I have to say, I like this ski because it feels like it can do more, and is more playful.
Hope that helps! Oh, the other two powder skis I liked, just not as much, were the Atomic Sugar Daddies (kind of a soft, spatula like all mountain ski, carvey, more shape that the Deep Spice) and the Salomon powder ski... very nice, less aggressive than the Deep Spice, fun.)
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