b r e c k e n r i d g e

[ 13:51 sunday 16 march – denver airport, colorado ]

for the last ten days i’ve been snowboarding in breckenridge, three thousand metres up in the colorado rockies, with mum, dad and jill. this was my second time boarding, the first being a week at levitunturi in finland two years ago (described here: http://www.charlesarmstrong.net/2006/02/22/f-e-a-r.html) . that first week i progressed from zero to making it down green runs, the simplest grade of piste. i started this visit to breckenridge with no specific objectives. i didn’t have any sense what i’d be capable of or how much i’d remember from the first stint in finland. but i wanted to learn as much as possible and improve as far as i could.

i’ve been out boarding for four or five hours each day, including two half-day sessions with an instructor. the conditions have changed wildly from day to day. sometimes the sky was clear, temperatures rose and the surface snow became mushy. other times the temperature plummeted, inches of snow fell overnight and blizzard conditions persisted through the day. it was the latter i enjoyed the most; with few people out on the slopes, visibility severely limited, the snow deep and powdery. i could fling myself around recklessly, sometimes not seeing another soul from the beginning of a run to the end, knowing that i could fall and even come cartwheeling down the slope without any risk of injury.

by the last day i was zipping down some black runs, three levels up from the green runs where i started. most of the feedback my instructor nikki had given me had become instinctive. i was sometimes, though not always, getting a sense of fluidity and rhythm coming down the slopes. above all i was loving it. i’m already itching for my next opportunity to get back on the snow.

this is the first time in my life i’ve really got fired up about a sport (yoga is different). against all expectation i might even have the potential to get good at it. and i love the fact it’s something i can share with mum and dad.

big thanks to warren for letting us all stay in his flat, which was the perfect base.

: c :

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