Dave and I have been to Dubai 3 times now. In a water/Saudi locked country it’s the cheapest place for a little getaway. Once you get there it’s not necessarily cheap of course, so if inexpensive is the goal, you need to be careful.
Both of the other times we went, we discussed skiing. Dave almost did one time but our schedule ruled it out. I have skied in the Canadian Rockies. As kids we skied many times every winter. We owned our own gear, we had a trailer near a ski hill in northern Ontario and it was the go-to place for weekend trips all winter long. Ski in Dubai? Cheesy. That was my thought. Some indoor baby hill of man made snow. Nah…I don’t need it.
On this trip it was Honour’s one request. She has never skied before and she wants part of her story to go like this…”I’m Canadian but I skied for the very first time in the desert, in a mall.” Ok, that is a fun story. I conceded and said I go with her.
When Dave heard her request he immediately said “Sure! I’ll take you!” Upon hearing this I altered my plans and decided that it would be a great time to go to a coffee shop and read a book, or get some shopping time in…..*insert the sound of car tires coming to a screeching halt*….when did I become the mother person who sits out of sporting events? In my imagination I would have never become that person. But somewhere along the line I did. So I said…”I’m coming too.”
As we were being fitted for skis I was asked if I could ski. I said yes. Are you good? I said, well, I’m Canadian (let’s start there) and I was good, but I haven’t skied for maybe…pause…hesitate…I threw out “10 years.”
It wasn’t until I was sitting in the chair being lifted to the top that I actually started counting the years. It had been more like 35 years since I’d been on skis. Oh boy. The nerves set it. I began mentally rehearsing. Before I felt my out-of-shape weakened muscles, while I was still sitting in the chair, I reminded myself of what it felt like. I could feel the snow beneath my skis, my knees bending and my upper leg muscles pushing the edges of the skis into the snow creating perfect control. I remembered things my Dad would tell us, ‘lack of confidence and tiredness cause the most accidents, don’t try things too hard at the end of the day when you’re getting tired.’
Rehearsing was over…we were at the top.
I’m happy to report that as I slipped over the top of the hill and headed down the slope it was like riding a bike. My body did indeed remember how to do it. As I mentally coached myself (“don’t be afraid, be confident, you know how to do this”) I felt my new self connect with my old self in a wonderful and miraculous way. And as I relaxed, now knowing that my body knew what to do I was able to remember a few other things…
…like wind in my hair, cool, crisp fresh air and the thrill of speed.
There are three different heights you can go to at Ski Dubai. It’s bigger than I expected (no, it’s not the Canadian Rockies) and actually, better than I expected. We did several runs on the medium sized hill to get warmed up and then wasted no time getting to the top. Despite my reconnection to my younger self I knew that my old body would likely tire quickly.
In the end I skied two days in a row and found that there were other things I had forgotten. The pain in my calves caused by brutal ski boots. Really? In 35 years they haven’t come up with something more comfortable than those &*(#@ ski boots?? Also, freezing cold fingers and toes. I forgot about that too.
Honestly, I felt like a teenager skiing. I forgot how fun it was. I forgot that I could do these things as well. I forgot (in my old, unfit body) that I was once athletic.
And oh the joy it gave me to hear Honour say “Dad! Did you see Mom? She’s really good! She looks so YOUNG when she’s skiing!”
That’s cuz I felt young sweetheart. Thanks so much for pushing us to ski.
Trust me when I tell you, this video is for the enjoyment of my parents…it won’t be exciting for you, but for ME…well…
LOOK MOM! NO HANDS!
(I wonder if you ever stop wanting your Mom to stop watching you do stuff?)