For those of you who haven’t yet heard, a few weeks ago
Pia flew in to join us for the trip and she,
Finally, after hours of waiting, a truck arrived with another minivan in tow. The replacement was not as new, nor as nice, but it worked and that was good enough for us.
We arrived at Alpine well after our lesson was to begin, but this turned out to be fortuitous. Lily's friend, Gray, who had worked at Alpine the previous winter, met us as we were finishing lunch and offered to give us a
When we'd had enough, we set out to find our hotel which was a beautiful place overlooking a mad-made beach on the lake. Being cold and wet, we upgraded to a room with a fireplace where we bathed, showered, stretched and rested.
That evening, we dined at Gar Woods Restaurant, a sumptuous meal of fresh fish and fancified side dishes.
When we returned to the hotel, Suzanne picked up her guitar again and sang us to sleep.
The next day we all awoke in pools of our own sweat. The fire which stayed lit through the night to dry our clothes also warmed the room to roughly the same temperature as the
We took breakfast at The Old Post Office and then returned to the mountain. This time we almost made it in time for our lesson (thinking that the lesson was at we strolled in 15 minutes "early" only to find that the lesson had begun at 10). Still, one of Gray's friends recognized us and snuck us into one of the lessons already underway. We all progressed steadily throughout the day, learning how to control our speed, how to change directions and how to come to a full stop without the use of our faces.
Toward the end of the lesson, our instructor, Josh, announced that we were all going to take the lift to the top of the hill and ride down to end the day. The next few minutes were somewhat of a blur: I remember standing in line, then a chair attacked Pia and knocked her to the ground, then all of a sudden I was level with the tops of the trees I'd spent much of the morning narrowly avoiding. I was more than a bit frightened when I realized that nothing held me to the chair as I was rocking in the wind 40 feet above the skiers and snowboarders below.
After what seemed like an hour, I made my graceless exit, head first, off the chair at the top of the bunny hill.
Best of all, we now finally have an answer for all our friends and family when they ask us if we'll miss the seasons during our stay in SF: It's 70 degrees and sunny in mid-February, but if we want snow, winter is only 3 hours to the east.