Crazy For Winter
It’s always so easy to think about the things you’re missing out on. The recent storm that blew through the Northeast happened to fall on a couple of days that I was scheduled to work. Making things even worse was that I was scheduled for first shift both days, meaning I wouldn’t even be able to sneak to the mountain for a few hours before work. When faced with a situation like this in years past, I would have been scrambling to find coverage for my shifts or, at the worst, desperately trying to weasel out of my shifts. If unsuccessful in either of those ventures, I would have stewed at work watching ski movies, until I was either sent home or became unbearable for other people to be around.
This year I am focusing on making the most of what I have. Rather than focus on what I miss out on, I’m trying to be grateful for what I’ve been able to do. Trying to attain this glass-half-full attitude has been a bit more difficult than anticipated (not to mention incredibly out of character). Despite having had more than a handful of great ski days, it’s often the ski day that I missed out on that I remember (almost worse is a great ski day that gets cut short by having to head into work). For some reason, the thought of other people getting the goods while I’m stuck inside has a powerful effect on me. When people come into the store during a snow storm, or on a day I deem a great ski day, I am always mystified; why would anyone want to be thinking about being in the snow or gearing up for the snow, when they could just actually be out in the snow? These people leave me totally perplexed, as on those days I am suppressing the urge to say fuck it, go skiing, and deal with the consequences later.
Despite the constant feeling of missing out on something, the fact is that I am extremely privileged to get out and do the things I love as much as I am able to. The truth is I get out far more than almost everyone I know, and even if I do miss a few great days, I make far more than I miss. Thanks to an early start this season, I’m still on pace to ski as much as I ever have in a season, despite some inconsistency on my part and a few set backs. I’m sure that most of my friends who made it out on those storm days I missed would probably happily trade that one day to be able to ski a quarter as often as I do.
An advantage of trying to adopt this positive attitude is that I really am trying to make the most of the moments I get on skis this season, being less concerned with the numbers (trying to forget about vertical skied, feet climbed, and total days on snow) and thinking more about the great moments I’ve had with friends in the outdoors (okay, and sometimes the bar in the lodge). I’m trying to make even the okay days feel great in my mind, and to not worry as much about what I’m missing when life’s daily tasks interfere with fun. (On a negative note, I’ve been told that now that I have stopped stressing about skiing, I’ve been letting other stresses get to me more than usual, such as slow drivers, people with more than ten items in the ten-items-or-less line, people who do not know how to park, and countless other trifling annoyances.)