Day five. Finally some skiing!
Chesieres Travel Blog› entry 6 of 11 › view all entries
Not counting our departure day, or the day we slept through after driving all night, this is day three in the mountains and finally I'm going skiing today. Out of the four of us, I am the only one who can ski. So, this was going to be a solo act for the day. It is a special day today, for it is my wife's birthday. For those of you who read this blog from day one, you know I had a gift prepared. After breakfast, I gave her my present and it moved her to tears. It was the perfect gift, and she loved it. What I gave? I gave her nothing… Mind you, I have put it in a nice box, carefully gift-wrapped it with fringes and all, and I included a card. My wife has everything she wants already, and feels more 'stuff' clutters her home and her life. She is not materialistic and is she's trying to 'simplify' her life. 'Nothing' was exactly what she wanted.
After the gifts were given, we decided I would go skiing and we would all have lunch on the mountain. You see, yesterday we discovered there was a train going up to Bretay, a little place amidst the slopes. With my 18 times zoom on the camera, I spotted a restaurant next to the little train station and suggested we would meet there. Eelco, being a good sport, was kind enough to drive me to the cable cart that would take me up the mountain. The cable cart is nearby, walking distance actually, but with those heavy boots on and ski's over your shoulder, ah well, let's just say I would get enough of a work out after I got off the cable cart. I bought myself a day pass with the same nice woman as Yesterday and I couldn't wait to get on the slopes.
Being high up in the mountains (the one I was on is a little over 2000 meters), it is advisable you are well prepared. Up there, there is thin, less polluted air, and you are closer to the sun. With proper gear on, some water and camera in my backpack and a sun block factor 20 on my face, down the slope I went. My first goal was the restaurant. After our horrible experience yesterday, we thought it was best to reserve a table, a task obviously given to me. Being on skies for the first time in 10 ½ months, it all felt a little weird and strange. My feet and legs weren't exactly doing what my brain was telling them to. I was on unfamiliar terrain and snow conditions were not perfect, a bit icy even. However, I will be the last person to blame my gear, the snow or my new surroundings.
The restaurant took its name from the road it was on, 'Col de Bretay'. Making a reservation wasn't possible anymore, the were fully booked. Fortunately, there's also a self service restaurant and the tables on the terrace belonged to it. I skied some more and after an hour or two, rested my weary ass on chair on the terrace. Turned out, I was sitting in the windiest spot of the place. This wouldn't have been a problem, if the temperatures weren't freezing. Anyhow, me being there early meant that I had time to switch tables.
Seeing all those people in gear, who are walking peculiar on skiing boots, wearing masks, scarves, bandanas, helmets and goggles, Eelco decided winter sports weren't his thing. He very much likes the mountains and the wintertime but couldn't be bothered with putting on all that gear, the scuffling masses or the queues in front of the lifts. With a hardy meal in my tummy, I said farewell and headed down the slopes some more.
In the evening, Jacomien cooked us a wonderful, Swiss dinner.