Saturday, 17 December 2011

graydon skis the powder

Hi, it's Graydon here and I want to tell you about the best thing I've ever done in my life!  Today, I went powder skiing for the first time ever.  It's been snowing here in Saanen for 4 days (ok, there was a little bit of rain  mixed in down in the valley) and today the lifts were all closed because of too much snow, wind and snow drifts.  We were all ready for skiing this morning when we found out that nothing was open, so my Dad drove Eli, Esmée, my Mum and I up the Saanen Eggli, the mountain right behind our chalet.  He dropped Eli, my Mum and I off with our skis, poles and helmets to have a run on our own.  Here we are at the top:

Every turn felt like I was in heaven!!  I've never skied in powder snow like that - it was like God dropped lots of flour on Switzerland when he was baking!  The snow was up to our knees and was light enough so that it flew up when we skied through it.  Here I am part way down our run:

After we got to the bottom, my Dad called to say that he was stuck on the road down the mountain because a car in front of him had jack-knifed and blocked the road.  So we had to walk home, but it's not very far so it was fun. I can't wait to ski the powder again.....

Here I am walking down the hill into the Rubeldorf area where we live:

Monday, 5 December 2011

the sky is finally falling

Two weeks of bronchitis is to blame for the radio silence.  But, I'm back in action and just in time for the arrival of winter here in the Saanenland.

It's been snowing in the alpine for a couple of days, but today in the valley, we got those huge, wet flakes that twist and twirl from the sky, almost like they're dancing their way down.  It was the kind of snow that collects in the hood of your coat, melts instantly and then runs to the ground when you bend over to undo your boots. The kind that means you have to start laying out your hat and scarf to dry when you come inside because they're too wet to stuff into the sleeve of your jacket.

There is something so deeply exciting about the first real snowfall.  Walking alone from the grocery store to the post office today,  I caught myself tilting my chin to the sky and opening my mouth wide, trying to catch the snowflakes.  When I told the kids about this, they said that the whole school was doing the same thing at morning break and lunchtime.  Must be an instinctual response for those of us that love winter.

Esmée turned 8 yesterday.  Her party is this coming weekend at the local community centre, but last night she had a few friends over for a raclette dinner.  Freeze dance, playing with new playmobil and bugging the older brothers were the activities of choice.  And of course, the requisite sparklers and loud (off key) singing....