Day 88: Shmistmas

Today took some planning. After a long discussion née argument which was not at all awkward the previous night, we decided on a plan which would allow us some skiing in the morning and then back in time to cook a turkey for Shmistmas! The fake, tofu-based christmas alternative.

We decided on Shmistmas as BS and MM are not around for long and we wanted to do something christmassy. The plan today was that we would head down the valley to Serre Chevalier (the next valley on basically) – a large multi-part ski resort. Those Two head off for a lesson on the cheaper beginner slope (at MontG there is annoyingly no beginner ticket) and then me and Les Grumblies would head off for a ski de fond at the top of the valley.

All went well but we were all completely buggeroonificated. We stalled a bit in a cafe while Those Two went off for their lesson. My legs just didn’t really want to do anything today.

On the way out of the cafe I chanced to see Ms Minx fall over. We later found out that she had decided skiing was not for her. I guess it isn’t for everyone!

I’ve been up to the area we went to (The Villar d’Arene) on foot during the autumn before. It’s a huge wild area with lots of really nice walking and beautiful views. On our way up we saw some para-skiers (combination of parachuting and skiing) on the slopes, but mainly we saw fog, and clag, and I steadily felt less and less like going skiing today.

It didn’t let up while we got out of the car and put our skis on. The piste didn’t look open actually – it had big “ferme- risque de avalanche” signs over each of the pistes. I think we figured in the end that the pisteurs were probably off duty, because there were people skiing back and forth.

yeah.. um, so, in this one, you can see... um

yeah.. um, so, in this one, you can see… um

The snow was pretty weird on the piste – not quite consolidated, my skis kept on sinking in at odd moments and throwing me off. There were also strange red dye stains on the track. We head up quite a steep track, past some pretty hefty holes in the piste where people had obviously fallen over on the way down.

er... Actually this one was right before I fell.

er… Actually this one was right before I fell.

On the way down that was exactly what I did. Twice. Bleargh. The second time I twisted and my ribs landed heavily on my pole. It was pretty sore but I didn’t think I have broken anything. Little did I know that it would stay sore for the next couple of weeks! (yes, I’m writing this later – well behind on the blog right now!)

Finally the mountains begain to start revealing themselves on the way back, and were beautiful into the bargain. By then I was ready to give up though. While Les Grumblies went for a bit more of a ski I stopped off in the local refuge and had a conciliatory chocolat chaud.

After that we picked up Those Two and thereafter Shmistmas commenced! It was a very merry shmistmas indeed with some expertly cooked shmistmas food and lovely presents :).


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