After my friend Jayson left on February 6th, I just wasn't feelin’ it. I went out for a few laps on the 15th. Then again on the 20th. A piece of my binding broke. My knees ached from work. It got cold. I booked a flight home to Texas for March first. I picked up a few extra shifts to make up for time missed.
28 inches in 24 hours, Summit finally got a big storm, and I was out of town. I looked forward to a few afternoon laps last Tuesday after flying in. But an avalanche closed the interstate and led to a costly detour.
Four days of work followed. My first 7-5 shifts. Stress and indifference toward the mountain pushed me to make the switch from nights. I didn't even care to ride.
Work got crazy. The crowds arrived. On Sunday, my first day off, I watched the traffic filter past my window on 6.
Yesterday, I went to Break, but left my gear at home. I decided to visit a cafe and take photos instead.
Last night, I looked at my board in the corner. Leaned sideways with my helmet attached. It'd been collection dust for nearly three weeks.
"Take at least three laps" I wrote in my notes before going to bed.
I didn't sleep great. I woke up a bunch of times. I checked my phone. The forecast called for a high of 48 degrees. "It's going to be a slushy mess." I thought. "and the crowds ..." "It's going to be dangerous." I let the excuses amass.
"Heading out soon?" I texted a friend in an attempt to right the ship. "Shit, there goes the 8:54 bus." The next one wouldn't arrive for another twenty minutes. I sipped some coffee in the kitchen, watching the cars creep by. There were clouds on the horizon. My friend still hadn’t replied. 9:05. 9:07. 9:10. I grabbed my board and headed for the bus stop.
Not cold, but still crisp. In the sun, I tightened my boots at the bottom of the lift. Surprisingly, the line was empty. In anticipation of a shared chair, I left an earbud out. Garret from Iowa provided pleasant company on the trip through the trees.
I was concerned that I'd feel uncomfortable. That in 20 days away I may had forgotten how to ride. But from my first turn, it felt right. The snow wasn't hard, nor was it slush. The runs were empty, and the air was fresh. Blue filled the sky, and the mountains were all white. Clarity on the horizon, and in my mind.
After three runs, I felt refreshed, and I began to type.
The bills, the appointments, the deadlines, the anticipation. Not a day goes by where these things don't dominate my mind. Yet all too often, I forget about great it is to enjoy the present.
Why is it so easy to ignore the things we like?