My thoughts on opening day, now just a brief twelve days away.
That anticipation, driving up the access road, anxious to see that first glimpse of the mountain. Gondola spinning in the distance, gear is gathered as we set out across the asphalt, not yet slathered with the seasons slush and sand. Rising over patio crest, unless the Earth has been generous, our eyes are greeted by a mixture of greenish grass and mud, intermixed with racks of skis awaiting a winter yet to come, ready to cradle our own boards.
We gather round a patio table, boot bags settling down, zippers opening, one can almost feel the rush of air from last seasons final spring days. Beyond is the arena, a somewhat unsettling mass of mans white miracle. The Hudson River, laid down in a semi-frozen mixture of slush, ice clumps and a rag tag chatter of bowls edge tree limbs straining under the weight of an occasional ice mass. Guns silent, but looming in wait for the evenings chill.
Gear in hand, I watch as the mud oozes out from under my boots, step by step until my slushy walk off ends with the sound of the season's first pass scan. Ritualistic is our demeanor as we step from slush onto the gondola landing, doors opening, skis stowed, I pace in parallel as my team loads. In eye's corner I see gondola's rising as I pass through the cabin threshold.
Another season has begun, and I am the luckiest of men, surrounded by my family, grown now, I am full of youthful memories and the energy that skiing has brought to my existence. it is a force that binds us and reminds of who we are, where we've been. It inspires me to forge on, into another year, it is life.
So lets not worry about the snow, the conditions, the bare spots. None of that is important compared to the true riches and memories that this sport has been kind enough to grace our world with.