Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Relief in Laguna, Ski season begins!

Laguna Brothers.
Hello friends! I'm so sorry I haven't written in a while. Things are busy and good. Sooo much has happened, so here's a quick update and we'll get back to it.

I'm, what, 12 weeks out from surgery now? My neck is still sore, the muscles on the left side are achy and jumpy like crazy, and the bones are sore, too. But I'm getting stronger all the time.

"my life does NOT SUCK!"
I went through about four weeks of insomnia and some sort of random daytime narcolepsy like activity... picture driving yourself the to grocery store and suddenly needing to pull over because you have to sleep NOW. Random and weird. But that's gotten way better. And last night I slept about 14 hours which was AWESOME.

Ethan flies for the second time, and loves it.
The boys and I headed out to California to visit my amazing cousins, the Quilters, and to see my cousin Matt get married to his amazing Patty. It was a much needed respite from driving to Vail to all kinds of appointments and stresses, we went to the beach, visited with family, laid around reading Calvin and Hobbes, and the boys got to fly cousin Charlies Cessna 195, a radial engine airplane that feels exactly like you've glued wings to a VW bug and decided it would be a good idea to see how long it will stay in the air.

The season has started, I got cleared to ski the DAY BEFORE the Trainer's Training for RM PSIA in Breckenridge, and it took me five hours to drive from Aspen to Breck because I had to pull over and sleep four times on the way. Embarrassing is not the half of it. Whatever, I made it.

Bodhi finds a hero.
And I got on snow, and looked around and THERE THEY WERE! My PSIA family. A huge group of super nerdy snow geeks, just like me. We all got together and geeked out on our skiing, on each other's skiing... we talked about skiing on the hill and tried to ski in the conference room. Its what we do.

I saw so many people who inspire and excite me, and there were hugs, and there was a pub crawl, and then, more skiing! Biomechanics clinics, Movement Analysis clinics... and I thought, wow, I'm at Trainer's Training... how cool.
Ethan explains everything he understands about planes

I expected the skiing to be terrible... I mean, my skiing in particular, but it was okay. I was waaaay weaker than I expected to be, but my balance was okay. I took it easy, and slept like I'd been hit in the head with a hammer both nights after skiing. The drive home was long, fast, and I couldn't stop to sleep, because Ethan was in the Fourth Grade Play that night.

Laguna frees Bodhi
I only missed the first ten minutes of this nearly two hour production of doom. He's been talking about doing it since first grade. Its a big deal.

And then it was time for Trainer's Training for inhouse trainers in Aspen, and I was sitting in this room with about 50 other people, looking around going... huh... I've been working towards sitting in this room for five years. It was sort of shocking, and fun, and good, to be there, and just get to work. Like that's a normal thing to do, have a dream realized and just sit down and turn the page and keep moving because life is happening now!

A tour of QSC by Cousin Pat. Yes, that's a machine building the amps.
I also was lucky enough to give a presentation at ProFair, which I wrote about building trust with clients to help with repeat business. It was fun to write, and scary to give. I don't get big stage fright, generally. I get some rockin' nerves, which are nice to wake you up and pump you up, but the night before, WOW, I was staring at the ceiling until 4am. Not good! Kurt helped, he had me do a dry run for him, I made some notes and changes and off we went.

The room was full to capacity, and it was really fun. I love this topic, it was so fun to interact with my peeps, this willing audience who let me roundly abuse them with teddy bear props. Kurt sat on the counter in the back, and I let my eyes rest on him, and smiled to think it was nice he was there, part of this, and to know I could do it regardless.

Next up was a couple of newsletters that I'm working on, and my application for the teams selection process. Nine days left until applications close. I'm shooting my video tomorrow.
Ethan and Bodhi enjoy the Long Beach Aquarium

Meanwhile, I've gotten a few days of skiing in, slowly, and over the last two weeks, a lot of healing has happened. My strength is coming back, I'm not falling asleep on the way to the store any more, I've picked up my uniform, moved into my locker, and seen a bunch of old friends from the locker room.

I love this seasonal insanity, the familiarity once the mountain opens and the waiting is over, dress and ski undress and nurse feet, hug kiddos, sleep, dress and ski, undress and nurse feet... wash, rinse, repeat.

One exciting thing is that I get to take a trip to BC this year to ski with my friend Josh, who I haven't seen in years. I'm super stoked. He's a rockstar, and I've never skied up north before! In spite of the over (gulp) $120,000.00 in medical expenses I've incurred because of this car accident, I'm going to be able to take this trip! After not getting to go to Portillo or Ushuia for one reason or another, having a plane ticket in hand for BC is SUPER exciting.

That's the quick update. I hope I can get on here more often now that I'm not swimming through a haze of Dilloted and Hydromorphone and Vallium and Oxycontin... Ya, I'm not kidding, that was intense. I don't remember like four weeks of it after I got home except for some strong memories that I made a point of writing down. SOOooo glad thats over.

Happy 2011/12 ski season! Get out there and rip it up!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Feel like skiing? Here's a GREAT movie by Matt and AJ Hobbs featuring all locals, made by locals. If You Want to Fly by Vital Films! Featuring Colter J. Hinchliffe and sooo much amazing local talent!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Winning Entry: The day I fell in love with my bike

Believe it or not, I got 52 entries for the writing contest: The day I fell in love with my bike.

Everyone had outstanding stories, but there was something really special about this one, and I hope you agree. Congratulations to Ron Shepard for his entry, and thanks for participating, everyone!

Ron has $140 to spend at the POC store!

A letter from an uncle to his nephew:

September 10, 2010

Dear Myles,

Along with this letter, you will find a very special toy; I hope you will enjoy it. You will have many cherished toys in your life, but somehow your bike will always be different.

Your bike is a tool for your imagination; it can be a horse, a motorcycle, a race car, or a fighter plane, and any ole’ place can become a cobblestone path on the Tour de’ France, or the rocky landscape of a distant planet.

Your bike is your first simple independence; it allows you to go places, to explore, and to venture forth. Every bike rider I know has a memorable ride from their childhood, and yours are all just ahead.

You will see that biking begins as a challenge, then an accomplishment, and then an escape. Your bike can become a conduit for un-cluttered thinking, an outlet for pent-up energy, and a form of expression; not quite like dancing, much more like flying. Learn to be your bikes care-giver (it is a wonderful thing to retire a bicycle that you have lovingly maintained), and while you practice mechanical reasoning upon it, it will teach you about physics.

Every bike rider has a moment of clarity when they sense that somehow, they became totally connected with their bicycle. Every rider also has a moment when they crash (really hard), and feel betrayed by their bicycle. You will love your old bike, and you will be inspired with each new one.

I remember teaching my son how to ride his bike, and I welcome every ride with him still. I hope your bike brings you the same opportunity for connection with your parents, and I want to remind you to take them for rides, even when you will have to slow down for them.

It may sound strange, but I think it is sort of a privilege to give a kid their first bicycle, and I hope you will share this one when you outgrow it. I look forward to when you can show me your favorite trail!


Cousin Ron

Congratulations, Shannon!

I found out last week that my awesome and inspirational training partner and really great friend Shannon is now the President of the NRM division of PSIA! Congratulations, Shannon! You are going to hit it out of the park!! I'm excited for you!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Its Real... I took a picture of it

I feel a bit like laying down on the floor and breathing into a paper bag. I'm choosing that instead of breaking out into hysterical laughter (I might wake up the kids). I just registered for Team Selection, like so many people have done all over the country. Each person, I imagine, no matter how many times they do it, pays the fee and hopes that the hard work and love of the sport is going to be enough.

I'm a little shocked that its here, I've been thinking about it hard for over a thousand days. When I first put the countdown up on the blog side bar, it said 1476 days to tryouts.

Now it says 169 days.

During that time, I met people who have gone through this journey over and over and over for years, and those whom they inspire. I got inspired myself, and I got to meet a lot of very interesting, genuine, authentic and passionate people who sacrifice SO much to do what they love.

I am so honored to be a part of the process, I think for me it used to feel absurd, but hopeful. Now I feel just really glad to have gone through the process even just to this point. My journey, and seeing yours, has made me feel like a part of a family.

Good luck, everyone, and no matter what happens, Academy this year is going to be OFF THE HOOK!

Sign up NOW for Alison Gannett's Rippin Chix Camp!

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