This afternoon, I piled socks, mittens, and gloves onto the table, trying to match them up. I searched the house for anything we were missing, and yelled to the kids to get their stuff together. "Does everyone have a helmet? Whose goggles are these? With-a-Why, did you try your boots on to make sure they still fit?"
Boy in Black took the snowboards to the ski shop yesterday to get them waxed. We made a trip this afternoon to get a few things we needed: a new pair of boots for Boy in Black, a new neck gaiter for me, some new boarding socks to replace worn out ones. We picked up Skater Boy on the way, and I called Blonde Niece to make sure she had gotten her stuff together. Now that the holidays are over, snowboarding season has begun. Early tomorrow morning, we'll head to the ski slopes.
Anyone who read my blog last winter probably remembers that I injured my knee on the ski slopes. I think I mentioned the injury in every blog post from the end of January until the middle of March. I stretched a ligament (the medial collateral ligament, to be specific) and pinched the cartilage. The worst part is that I hurt myself on the very first run of the season. Well, actually, I hurt myself BEFORE the first run of the season, since getting off the chairlift was what caused the leg to twist in a way that a leg is not supposed to twist. I ended up missing the whole season.
The good news is the my knee is fully recovered, and I have no lingering fear of snowboarding.
The bad news is that I am terrified of the damned chair lift.
A chair lift, I keep explaining to anyone who will listen, is designed for someone wearing skis. It's very easy to get off a chair lift when you are wearing skis. You just push off straight forward and ski down the little hill, all poised and graceful. Even little kids can get off a chairlift with ease when they are wearing skis.
Getting off a chair lift is completely different when you've got this long stiff snowboard awkwardly attached to one leg and not the other. You've got to twist your body sideways on a metal chair, stick one leg forward despite the heavy board dangling from it, shove the board down so that it will make contact with the icy ramp, get your loose foot to magically find the stomp pad on the board, and then somehow move sideways down the little slope before the chairlift knocks you in the head. Getting off a ski slope chairlift while wearing a snowboard is a completely unnatural act. It's like trying to ride a horse while wearing ice skates or playing hockey with snorkel fins on.
Wish me luck.