The Ski Script: Wednesday

Well, Wednesday. I know I said that Tuesday was mixed, with the delight of getting my technique back, but not being able to push myself. But Wednesday gave me much bigger highs and lows. I’ll talk about the negative first and then we can finish nicely on the positives!

The start of this week was election week. I Skyped into my college’s JCR meeting on Sunday and voting was open until Wednesday. It was a contested election, meaning that I wasn’t just running against the option to re-open nominations, I had an opponent. Despite my well meaning efforts, I was unsuccessful. I was of course extremely disappointed because I know I would have done a great job and I was well suited to the role. But I’m sure my competitor will do an excellent job and I look forward to attending lots of international events over the next year. I hope that when I return to Durham, it doesn’t stop me meeting people from the international community and speaking Italian.

But that’s enough of the negative, Wednesday was also very positive! I was moved up a group! Yay! Although I went from being maybe one of the best in my group to being one of the worst in the upper group, I was very happy about this progression. Mainly because last time I went skiing I felt very disappointed because I didn’t think I had improved. I was coasting if you will. This time I was determined to feel progress. The skiing was certainly more challenging, we were going faster and my technique was being much more criticised. But a lot of fun, and we did runs that I wouldn’t have been able to do with my other group which is good. So I will leave you with some pictures from the top of Campo Smith!

Jenn x

 

 

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The Ski Script: Tuesday

Tuesday. The mixed day. I skied well but felt a little out of control due to my continuing resistance to leaning into my boots. Unfortunately this is exacerbated by the numbness in my right foot…Too tight and I lose circulation. Too loose and foot seems to come flying out. I’ve heard that this is what speed skaters do, but I’m definitely not there yet…

As I mentioned in Monday’s Ski Script, I was allocated to the lower intermediates. At the start this wasn’t a issue. I was able to go gently and get my ski legs back. After a while I realised I was probably the best in the group. At first this was great, a real confidence boost but after a while it seemed to hold me back. My teacher, Luisa, did her best to try and cater for us all but I didn’t think I could improve with that group.  Thankfully my teacher Luisa was thinking the same thing and mentioned the possibility of moving up a group. Exciting prospects for Wednesday!

Tuesday was the day for the first day for go pro filming. My sister and my dad both have go pros. If two of you are wearing go pros, then you can see both your point of view and your profile. There are definitely times when I come out of a turn quicker than anticipated and lean back. A lot of the time when I have lessons, my teacher tells me to move my body this way or have my skis x width apart and to me I think that I’m doing it. It’s not until you watch yourself that you realise you look nothing like you think you do! Yes it doesn’t look as out of control but that doesn’t mean it looks graceful. Having never used a go pro before I was very unsure what the quality of the footage would be like. I thought that it would be quite bumpy like my skiing and this would affect the picture. But there’s not a blur in sight! And the footage is as smooth as you like. I was so happy about the quality of the footage it made me want to wear it on my jennventures!

Lunch was slightly disappointing because the sausage I had with my polenta definitely wasn’t like the sausage I’m used to in Italy. It was a gorgeous sunny day so we decided to sit outside, but unfortunately it made the food cold very quickly. Not ideal.

Usually the mountains make me feel very relaxed, usually. This week though, has been election week. Sometimes I felt torn between campaigning and enjoying my skiing. I think I found a good middle ground, only posting in groups rather than messaging individual people.

Let’s hope if Wednesday brings some faster paced skiing!!

The Ski Script: Monday

This post is being written retrospectively, so excuse me for any inaccuracies. Okay, so, yesterday morning was the day of firsts; first shower, first breakfast and first day at ski school!!! My ability is distinctly okay… average if you will. I skied 4 times as a teenager, a week at a time, with varying degrees of success. My second week I went down reds and a black but on my fourth week I was still doing blues and some reds without improving on my parallel. So I was very unsure of how my form would be, seven years later.

To my surprise, I wasn’t half bad, I didn’t come down the nursery slope all in a snow plow (only about 3/4s) . I was put into the lower level intermediates which suited me just fine on Monday. We stayed on the nursery slope but we did lots of exercises. We took a 20 minute break which was greatly appreciated. I hadn’t realised just how dehydrated I kept myself. But at least it gave me inspiration for a #doitfortheblog challenge…

Just as soon as I got my ski legs back, it was time for the lesson to end and for the eating to begin. I met up with my higher intermediate father and sister and they took me up the mountain for a spot of lunch. I recommended the polenta, one of my Italian favourites, but I had one of the dishes of the day, which for the life of me I can’t remember the name of but, they are balls made with potato, bread, bacon and cheese. Needless to say, I enjoyed my lunch a lot, they were nice and stodgy, full of energy and flavour but not too heavy. Meanwhile dads polenta with sausages was MASSIVE. It seemed like the sausages were never ending and once you finally got through the sausages there was more polenta. I look forward to having that on a cold snowy day.

Having had a relatively gentle morning I was raring to get going after lunch. After doing a few runs back down to the bottom of the mountain, my dad decided to take some apres ski while I encouraged my sister to join for a few more runs. My legs weren’t quite groaning for relief, so I wanted to make the most of it.

Throughout the day and especially in the morning, I encountered a problem I hadn’t previously experienced while skiing, pins and needles. It only took one quick shake of the leg and attempted curling of the toes to realise my right foot was actually very numb. I can only assume that I had my boots on too tight, in an attempt to keep my foot and ankle safe. If anyone has also had this problem, please let me know in a comment below!!

What I concluded from the end of the day was that I loved skiing and really have missed it.

Until the next time xx

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My sister and I

Skiing script: Sunday

This week I am lucky enough to be going skiing. I have been rather cheeky and taken the week BEFORE  the Easter holidays off, so I now have 3 weeks in a row off school. #yearabroadproblems, amirite?? In light of this I do feel like I should be productive in some shape or form, especially with lots of my lovely friends going through the trauma of dissertations. So, I have decided to do something a bit different on my blog this week. For now, I think I will call it My Skiing Script. I know I know, it’s not technically a script but I love alliteration and who knows maybe something interesting enough will happen to turn it into a script! If so, I got dibs. Essentially what I will be doing this week is a diary entry every evening talking about my day, how many times I snow plowed and if I fell off a lift (this is fairly likely).

So, I will slide straight in on the events of Sunday and Monday. I woke up as usual to the sounds of my animal housemates miaowing for attention, something I am usually very happy to do. However,I woke up at 6:30 and wanted to be out the door at 6:50 so I couldn’t faff around. Sorry Lewis and Jenson. I ended up being ready in ten minutes and having never used Fiumicino, I decided to leave early. This meant that I got a much earlier train than I had planned. Security was quick and simple and I ended up getting to my gate so early the flight before mine hadn’t  even started to board. I was very tempted to try and board it, seeing as it was a flight to Munich and, after spending a day there two years ago, it’s on my place to revisit. I decided to kill the two hours I had to wait by eating a sandwich and putting some make up on. Much to the disapproval of a couple of my fellow passengers.

Fast forward a few hours and I arrived in tiny Turin airport. As a domestic flight, we were not required to go through passport control. This meant it only took me 6 minutes to get out of arrivals, bang tidy. Unfortunately my transfer had already left so I was left with public transport. On a Sunday. This has nothing to do with it being Italy, but I had to wait for ages for my train. Luckily I had some correspondence regarding advice for a potential student. Big thanks goes to her for helping me kill time productively. Thankfully the train was lovely, clean and roomy because my patience was waning.

Once I arrived at Bardonecchia, it was all systems go go go. I had limited time and lots to do ahead of a very important Skype date with my college JCR. I got my equipment in the blink of an eye, service was speedy but too brief. Then I was left to wrestle with the WiFi. My Skype date went well (I hope!) Then it was dinner with a beaut glass of wine and bed to deal with the excitement.

I’ll be doing lots of snaps to document my time here so add my blog snapchat thejennventures and here are the ones you missed!

Ciao, a dopo!

Ruminations and reflections

So, it’s the end of my first two weeks ‘working’ at the international school and in very typical me fashion I’ve been reflecting quite a bit. What was my favourite? What was my least favourite? Have I been reaching my potential? Have I made enough friends? And the most scary question of all, can I remember everyone’s name? Eeek. As an aside, writing this post has made me realise just how much I (and probably a lot of other people) EVALUATE. Since social media has become a regular presence in our lives it makes it so much easier to compare and evaluate ourselves. No longer are targets resigned to the classroom or New Year celebrations. Nowadays evaluating yourself and finding out how to improve yourself is no longer solely the realm of the self-help section in the bookshop.

 

My favourite moment

I have decided to spread my wings and use my time here to experiment with working with a variety of age groups. Previously, I have stubbornly stuck with primary. I could spout many reasons they I prefer them, but in reality it is probably because I have such fond primary school memories that I am regressing back too. Although I am spending time in secondary, this week I couldn’t help but sidle down to primary and ask if they could let me hang around. On one such happy occasion was my time with the green dragons. This is the name given to the older reception class. In leyman’s terms it’s the 4-5 year olds. It was just after snack time and some children were reading/looking at some books on the carpet. Being a bookworm myself I could resist but plonk myself down. Roughly 3 minutes passed when I was asked if I could read a book to someone. This in itself made me extremely happy because I felt it was a sign of acceptance. But, it wasn’t what made my heart jump with joy. It was when I properly lifted my head up and realised I was almost surrounded  by children listening to this story. After spending time with some very ambivalent year 9 and 12’s, it was so nice to get that thing that humans often desire, attention.

 

My least favourite moment

If you’ve ever been with me in a Psychology lecture you might have seen my eyelids droop quite significantly. Usually I put this down to eating too much melted cheese combined with the boring subject material and the darkness of the lecture room. To my disappointment I crashed in a year 12 Chemistry lesson. It was all I could do to keep my eyes open. I felt doubly guilty because I was an adult and adult’s can’t look a step away from bed in each other’s lessons.

 

My most bizarre moment

Caberet. I think it was my second day when I went to lunch only to be pulled into an empty classroom to learn some classic Greek dance moves. The school’s charity ZOA which funds an orphanage in Zambia organised an event to raise money and have a laugh. Staff and parents were encourage to create some kind of entertainment piece and perform it on stage. Be it the sirtaki, or a middle-age take on Greece sketches. It was a great laugh, I learnt a new set of dance moves and I had a couple of glasses of prosecco. Always a winner with me.