Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Tuesday 22/01/08

So as we all know this weekend I’m going skiing for a week and I’ve never been skiing before and I don’t know what to expect, so on Tuesday Matty helpfully sends me a list of things that I may or may not need.  Most likely may though. 

And these things are: 

1)    Hat

Of which I have plenty, how do we think I went to Iceland.

2)    Goggles & sunglasses for when you get confident

Sunglasses I have plenty of course but skiing goggles/mask I don’t, so on Tuesday lunchtime I go out to buy some and I go in Oakley and find a mask that costs £140 and I text Matty and I ask: “Is £140 for a skiing mask reasonable?” and Matty replies, “For a week? More like £20 I would think”.  But I can’t bring myself to buy one for only £20 so I end up getting a £69.99 one and we’re all happy.

3)    Scarf


4)    Jacket

I presume he means a waterproof jacket so I’ll take my Polo Sport one that I also took to Iceland, which is white and will look fucking ace in a snowy background.

    5) Long sleeved under tops, eg t-shirts, jumpers

Yes, we get it, dress in layers.  Nothing Mummy hasn’t told me before.

6)    Gloves – we’ve brought some from home for you if you fancy

Yes I do fancy, because I don’t have any skiing gloves and even though I did see some brilliant ones in Oakley again (white) they cost £60 and I would normally have gotten them, but right now I’m trying to save money for Australia so I didn’t.

7)    Skiing trousers/salopets

I don’t know what salopets are, but I do have some skiing trousers which I bought two years ago from TK Maxx by mistake, thinking they were tracksuit bottoms and I haven’t been able to wear since because they’re fucking boiling.

     8) Ski socks – at least 3 pairs

This is another thing that I’m missing and I’ll probably have to go and buy, because I asked Matty if I can substitute them with football socks and he said sorry no, that just won’t do. 

So these are Matty’s eight recommendations of essential items, but I have my own shortlist and this shortlist is: 

1)    Shorts, vests, trainers for the gym – where I will spend most of my time when I realize I can’t be bothered with all the skiing malarkey 

2)    Swimming shorts for the pool – where I will also spend a lot of my time 

3)    My laptop so that I can write my views on skiing and life in general shut in my chalet room 

4)    Seven boiled eggs for a healthy bedtime snack, one for each night 

Matty also points out that I will have to take skiing lessons and I will probably have to do that with people I don’t know, because him and Nicole are already pretty good, so am I ready to make friends? 

And I reply that no, of course I’m not ready to make friends unless they are muscly strangers from Sydney, but I don’t expect this is a demographic I will come across very often on the French Alps. 

Finally, I don’t know about skiing, socialising and all that, but my plan for this holiday is to spend considerable time in the chalet on my own, looking out the window, pretending that I’m an anguished tuberculosis patient trapped in an excusive sanatorium in Switzerland in 1917 with only my memories to keep me from losing my sanity.  Like a tortured Sylvia Plath character, a resentful anti-hero with a grudge against the world, a former lover, a fallen soldier clutching my sole war medal in a bleeding fist. 

And for this activity ideally I will be wearing basic cottony comfortable clothes in earthy tones, for example soft brown trousers held up with a primitive belt – perhaps just a rope tied around my waist – a very worn white cotton shirt with missing buttons and a warm lambs wool sweater with moth bites.  

I don’t own any of these items, so perhaps this is what I should be doing on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday lunchtime.


Frontier Psychiatrist said...

I would go the Sylvia Plath route, which would allow you to dress more stylishly. (As you seem wont to do.)

London Preppy said...

fs: What would that involve wearing? I'm running out of time!

Bobby Vanquish said...

Can I please say that I am so jealous actually.
Make sure you don't wear goggles too big otherwise you'll get a ridiculous face tan.
You have to have at least ONE apres-ski alcoholic drink and remember to ben-zeknees (bend the knees).
Did I say that I was jealous of this? Okay, I'm going.

London Preppy said...

bobby: I'll post a ski mask picture tomorrow so we can assess the potential ridiculousness of the tan

kim said...

... a fallen soldier clutching my sole war medal in a bleeding fist.

insert spontaneous five minute standing ovation here ... cue Billy Crystal entering stage left and presenting Tony/Oscar/whatever statuette and more applause.

Orchis said...

Or you could be the tubercular Hans Castorp from Mann's 'The Magic Mountain' - Edwardian clothing would be required.

I like the idea of lugging 'seven boiled eggs' halfway across Europe, but what else will you be eating ?

Frontier Psychiatrist said...

Well, with a name like London Preppy, you’re probably well on your way to dressing suitably Plath-like.

Just adjust your normal wardrobe for a kind of 1950s, WASPy, academic look.

Good luck.

London Preppy said...

kim: That was my proudest line from today's post. Well spotted :-)

orchis: This is something that troubled me too. But Matty told me that I'll be able to buy food in France. I'm definitely packing protein shakes and nuts too though

Matt said...

Ski school is hilarious. I went in NZ in Sept. You get to laugh at all the people who have no balance and don't get the concept of being able to stop...that is until they really hurt themself, when you laugh, but just don't let people see.

The ski instructors can be quite delectable too. This might be where you find your Aussie.

You won't need the gym, it will be a good test of how well you work out your legs...you may find new muscles!

Jeff said...

dont forget the long johns!
oh and some lip balm

DAVID said...

1. Make sure the ski pants, I mean ski trousers, are water-proof. The first time you fall (and that will happen a lot), the snow will start to soak into your trousers if they are not waterproof, and make the rest of your day miserable.

2. You might want to get these little sealed packaged "toe warmers". You open them up, and when they are exposed to air, they warm up for a few hours. You put them under your toes, and they are kind of like a Band-Aid or I think you call them "plasters" over there. My toes always freeze, so these really help.

3. Don't go down any black diamond run, let alone any double black diamond run. You will die! Ha ha. Stay on the green circle (easy) runs the first day, and gradually try the blue square (intermediate) runs when you get more comfortable.

Hopefully these symbols are the same over there than the U.S. I found out the hard way when I was there in October that gas pump colors are the opposite over there when I filled our diesel car with the "green" nozzle (green is diesel here). In other words, make sure the green circle runs aren't the advanced runs!! Watch out for trees too! I think Sonny Bono killed himself by running into a tree while skiing. Be safe!

Trybaby said...

So you are really going through with it? Moving to Austrailia? Is Scott going with you?

FitnessNerd said...

Definitely take the class. As awful as it will feel to be with someone's old Aunt Ida, learning how to stop is just not something to joke about.

The first time I went skiing, I decided I didn't need to take the class. When I went down the bunny hill the first time, I slammed into the instructor that was teaching the class I SHOULD have been taking. :)

Daver said...

I would stick with the goggles the whole time. If they are quality goggles they will not fog up plus if you fall the plastic wont break and gouge your eyes/face like sunglasses may.
Don't attach your lift ticket to the main zipper, put it on a pocket zipper or anywhere else that's accessible. If you place it on your main zipper it will flap in your face while skiing.
If your boots are too tight you will lose circulation and you'll actually be colder.
Ski socks aren't necessary, you were correct to ask about football socks. I'll wear either and as long as they don't bunch up I don't find much of a difference.
Music device such as an ipod for the lift as it's nice to be able to ignore others on the lift.
Make sure the first layer you put on is tight and attractive as you'll want to strip off your jacket and down to this layer while lounging in the chalet when not skiing.
Be really careful on the stairs, ski boots and stairs or very difficult. If however you're wearing snowboard gear, this is a different story.
If you see anyone ski off a cliff or fall in a crevice, take a different path.

London Preppy said...

trybaby: I think so. And no.

everyone: Thanks for the skiing tips, all noted!

billybudd said...

Orchis beat me to the witty literary comment about "The Magic Mountain." Hans becomes hopelessly obsessed with a foreigner, and what started as a three-week visit becomes a seven year retreat. Maybe you will find an Aussie to obsess about after all, since life is always like the books we read.

Oh, and try to alternate which side you fall on, otherwise it become hard to sit later on.