Tuesday, January 15, 2008

First Ski Experience

I was away for a couple of days over the weekends for my first ski trip ever.
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My first ski trip didn't come any earlier as I was back home during the 2-week winter break last December. I missed the snowboard and the ski trip organised by the college and the senpai, held in Myoko and Togari respectively during that period. Anyway, back to this trip in Tsunan, it was organised by the college and 21 of us went there, which consists of 15 foreign students and three Japanese students and sensei each.
The day started with me waking up late - 20 minutes from the time we were supposed to assemble. As it was snowing along the way and with me having some serious lack of sleep from the previous night, it just made it the perfect time for me to take a nap. The journey to the ski resort, New Greenpia was about one and a half hour; and when we were almost there, I woke up to see the surroundings outside was covered with snow.
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At some places, the snow accumulated as high as one two meters.
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The view along the way was just breathtaking. No better words to describe it, but simple amazing. A kid like me who has never seen snow all my life, my attention was solely paid on the view outside the window of the bus, looking at the view of the countryside being covered with thick layers of snow.
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Almost everything is covered under snow. The cars, the rooftop, the lamp post, the traffic lights, the sign boards, the branches of trees, the paddy field were all white.
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Soon enough, we reached the resort and after settling down and had our lunch, the newbies to skiing of the third year kohais were given a skiing lesson by three instructors. It started off with the introduction of the equipments for skiing, followed up with the basic of skiing. That included how to fall the right way. It was that time that we learned how to walk forward and backwards like a penguin, walk sidewards like a crab, and fall down like a kangaroo.
I took almost five minutes, just to get myself up the first time I made myself fall down. It didn't get any better when I fell down on the slopes while practising the crab walk. The time I took was longer, about ten minutes. After the lesson which lasted for two hours, we took the lift to the top of the mountains to start skiing. I already got my first fall even when I was gliding down from the slopes after getting down from the lift. Laugh as much as you want, but that was what really happened.
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I spent my entire first day practising on my brakes as I am really sucks when it comes to getting myself to a stationary state. Perhaps it was because of my height that I find it extremely hard to balance myself. Like the momentum law stated, the greater the mass and velocity is, the higher momentum it will generate. That is why I tried my best making myself fall to the ground when coming to someone's way, to avoid causing an accident to someone. But as far as my memory serves me right, I hit into at least two people. It was really embarrassing that time.
For some time already, I haven't felt touched by someone's deed. But on the first day, one of my sensei was with me the entire day, showing me the right way to ski without giving up on me. I couldn't remember how many times I fell down, but he still continue to make sure that I could ski eventually. I felt I was a total let down and have been a disappointment to him because at the end of the day, I still didn't get much better from the beginning of the day. He kept on telling me that it is okay. Well, that is just the typical Japanese. Nevertheless, deep in his heart, I know he must be thinking why is this crab is not making much improvements. The first day ended with me walking down the slopes without wearing the ski with that sensei by my side. I was really down and it was totally a disappointment.
Later that night, we had our buffet-dinner and almost everyone had at least three rounds of food. The variety of food there were too many that we were spoilt for choice. We later went for a bowling game and have some siao moments playing with that Japanese Neoprint sticker machines. Imagine no less than ten people, pushing and shoving to fit inside a 10x10cm screen. My body was aching at every parts of my body, and I fall asleep straight away the moment I lied down onto the futon.
The second day started with us having another buffet for our breakfast. This time, I didn't go as many rounds as the previous night, bearing in mind that we will be skiing afterwards. But it was snowing really heavily on the second day, and we could only go out skiing an hour later than the initial planned time. Even the roof of the vehicles in the car park are covered in layers of snow about 60 centimeters high.
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Taken from our room of the hotel.
When I was ranting to Joann on how bad my first day was, she told me not to worry as it would be a different thing on the second day and she was worse than me when she went for her first ski trip in Nagano. I wasn't that sure how true was her words, until I skied in the second day. It was a complete change from the first day. This time, there was another sensei who was giving me tips again. I guess I only fall two or three times in the morning session and I managed to ski down a rather steep slope without falling down. My mood took a change and I felt much better. I slowly regained my confidence back. We later went down for lunch break and continued skiing after that.
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The weather was getting worse by noon and the visibly range was only about 15 meters in front. I didn't know what had struck me, but I went with two of my senpais to try one of the steep slopes at the highest point of the mountain. As expected, I was rolling down from the slopes most of the time, like that tortoise in Form Five sastera's novel - Perlumbaan Kedua. Fortunately for me, one of the sensei came to my rescue. I merely just found the right way to ski properly and my gatal-ness to try that slope had certainly serves me right.
Nevertheless, falling inside non-compact snow which are soft was quite fun. At some places, you will find your whole body buried inside the snow when you fall down. That was what happened to me. I think I ate some snow when I was inside the snow and everytime I was in that position, I felt lazy to get myself up. It was quite nice to just lie down on the snow.
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I was told the weather on the second day was the coldest for the last few years they went for this annual college's ski trip. Imagine skiing under minus five degree Celsius with minimal visibly range. It was dangerous to a certain extend, but I was just guessing the lane ahead while tagging along others in front of me to make sure I didn't ski straight into the cliff.
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From left: Roby, William, King, Ayu, Idris and Syieda.
In a whole, it was nice experience for me personally getting to ski for the first time in my life, although I am still like a baby starting to learn how to walk his first few steps in this skiing thing. To wrap up this post, it is me posing with a snowman.

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The snowman seemed like he is saying "Come, let me hug you!"
I didn't say the snowman has to be made of real snow, did I?


mg said...

those snow covered trees reminds me of the movie Narnia where the evil white witch was ruling Narnia. hehe.

looks like fun. lying down on the snow feels like nice to me.=P

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
i thought narnia is another production of disney, and you always say that disney's shows are only for small kids, right?

it is really nice lying down on the snow, but even nicer when you get to throw snow balls at people =P

mg said...

narnia is not by disney!!! O.O but it's a story books for small kid. you should read it. good for u.. =P

KOKahKOK said...

nice i wish i am there now! aiya! ski...i never ski b4 yet envy u la! malaysia gov pay u go eh ko haha

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
it was a technical error =D

calvin said...

@ kokahkok:
i also never ski before this and i am just using this opportunity to try as many new things as possible while i am still in japan =)