Thursday, March 2, 2006

Copper Mountain, February 2006….the GOOD, the BAD, and the UGLY

I figure the best way to summarize our ski trip is to divide the highlights into categories…the good, the bad and the ugly.

The Good:
1) Planes, Trains, and Automobiles. How often can you say you get to ride all three in one day? We can!

2) Hayden on skis. Hayden actually thinks he (in his words) “skied down the hill…in Colorado…on the snow…not through the trees…as FAST as Dash”. Technically speaking, I don’t know how far you actually have to ski to be able to make that claim. It is most likely further than 5 feet from the arms of your mom into the arms of your dad, but c’mon, who wants to confront a two year old with that truth. He can tell his friends what he wants. I have pictures to back him up. Jeff and I definitely did a good job talking up skiing to Hayden over the past month. He was very excited. However we forgot to tell him one small detail…..we would not “walk away” and he could not do it “by himself” during the learning process. Needless to say, Mr. Independent (where did he get that from?) was a bit disappointed to find out I would be skiing behind him, helping to guide him. When he learned this devastating news, the tears started. That is when the bystanders began peering at us, with a look of disgust, like we were attempting to train our 2 year old for the 2022 Olympics. In reality, we were just taking advantage of the free skis and free lift tickets (before age 5), and allowing Hayden another good line when he plays 2 truths and a lie at some training conference in twenty years….I can see it now….
Hayden: “I once had three thumbs, I know how to juggle steak knives, I learned to ski at age 2”
Other interns in the conference room (in unison): “NO WAY you skied at age 2”

3) My parents! They were a God send! Seriously, anyone who spends their 34th anniversary baby-sitting 3 kids under the age of 2 in an 800 sf condo (more on the size of the condo in the next section) with very few toys needs to be seriously rewarded…and with more than just a fajita dinner at the Lazy Lizard.

(Sidenote: the night that we went to the Lazy Lizard, Hayden was completely exhausted and fell asleep in Granddads arms before we had even ordered. About two hours later, he woke up back at the condo and groggily asked, “When are we going to eat the lizard, GrandDad” ---too cute)

Both Mimi and GrandDad had important roles on the trip. Mimi’s role is to bail Hayden out and defend him regardless of what he does wrong. I can only imagine Mimi’s reaction the day some poor teacher sends innocent Hayden to the principals’ office. GrandDad’s role is a bit different. He makes “everyday a field day, every meal a banquet” (as my mom always says). Case in point from my own childhood: On one of the first few dates with Jeff, I suggested we go downtown to ride the glass elevators. Being the people pleaser Jeff is, he agreed, and only later did it occur to me that glass elevators are probably not on the top 10 list for tourist spots in Houston. However, my Dad had convinced me otherwise. He has this same influence on Hayden. Everything is fun with GrandDad!

4) My Tailbone…and the fact that it is still in one piece. I learned my lesson and didn’t make a stupid attempt at snowboarding again. And, in case anyone is curious, I can tell you that breaking your tailbone is more painful than childbirth. That, coupled with the fact that no cast = no sympathy, and amazingly enough, everyone I have told has also broken their tailbone (yea right!!!), is why this is classified in “the good” section.

5) Ski Boots. Those of you that have ever been skiing with me know that I have to try on at least 6 pairs of ski boots before I find a pair that fit well enough. This aggravates me to no end. By no means do I think I am the skinniest girl on the block, and I will willingly admit that my hips and thighs are what we’ll call “above average”. However, my calves do not seem that out-of-line with standards. Every year at skiing time, I come to the realization that apparently they are. This year was different. I am going to send a shout out to the man at Peak Sports at Copper Junction who amazingly found a pair of boots to fit on the first try, despite the fact that I am 10 pounds heavier…okay 12…okay 15 than my average ski weight.

6) Kellie’s kennel. Thank you Kellie for watching my painfully obnoxious, squeaky, attention deprived dog that runs away into the yard of a drug dealer . I know it wasn’t easy. Next time (if you would ever agree to that again), you do not have to chase her.

The Bad:
1) Traveling when morons are working behind the counter at Frontier Airlines. Seriously. The only Frontier airlines job requirement must be the ability to type 3 wpm. As we walked up to the counter 50 MINUTES EARLY, we were scolded by the incompetent reservation representative that we were late, and our luggage would probably not make it on the plane, however he would “try his hardest to get it on, but you know how TSA is”. My first reaction was gratitude for his efforts. However, somewhere between my first reaction and him answering his cell phone 3 FREAKING TIMES, and responding to a lady who blatantly cut in line to ask if someone had found a lost cell phone, I lost my patience. I casually* reminded him that he was trying his hardest to get our luggage on the plane (*by casually, I mean I didn’t throw the luggage at him, as Jeff would have). But before I did that, I literally looked around for the candid camera crew. We weren’t even late in the first place, and this guy gets me all worked up about being late, then takes 15 minutes to start tagging the bags while taking phone calls from his buddies. Sadly, this was reality, but I think I am going to submit it to the candid camera crew for a future bit.

2) Traveling when morons are working behind the counter at Payless Car Rental. Economically speaking, I should have known by the name that they probably don’t have the financial resources to staff the top talent pool. But I would expect that they could find someone that knows how to swipe a credit card. I will leave out the 90-minute details (no lie), but know that once again I was looking over my shoulder for the candid camera crew, and since I didn’t see the red blinking light anywhere, I think I have another good bit for them.

3) Traffic. What should have been a 2-hour drive from Denver airport took 4 hours due to the 5-car pile up and brilliant Colorado engineers that only put one exit every 70 miles. As if traffic is ever fun, four hours in the car with two screaming babies and a mom that needs to ‘tt’ is a “fun of fun” (as Hayden says).

4) Sleeping arrangements. Let’s just say that Colorado is not Davis’ favorite place to sleep. The dry, cold air and high altitude doesn’t agree with his nose. The formula goes something like this…
Dry air = Stuffy nose
Stuffy nose = Difficult time keeping pacifier in mouth
Difficult time keeping pacifier in mouth = Sleepless baby
Sleepless baby = Sleepless parents
So, algebraically, Dry air = Sleepless parents

5) High Altitude Pulmonary Edema. For those of you who don’t watch Grey’s Anatomy to stay current on all health topics, Emedicine describes this as:

“Altitude illness due to hypoxic injury and/or maladaptive physiological changes occurring at high altitude, generally above 8000 ft (2500 m). High-altitude pulmonary edema (HAPE) refers to the severe pulmonary form. High-altitude cough is a benign cause of coughing at high altitude. HAPE may be fatal within a few hours unless treated by descent or oxygen, and it is the most common cause of death related to high altitude.”---whatever that means!

Matt and my mom have both had a serious case of this in the past that required a hospital visit and oxygen tank to recover. They have also both been prescribed medicine to take 2 days BEFORE you go to the mountains to prevent it. Genius Matt (yes, I know you read this) didn’t take his medicine and started getting the symptoms of HAPE the third day we were there. To be safe, he left the mountains a day early and caught a flight back to Dallas. I wanted to question if he left due to High Altitude Pulmonary Edema or #4 above…..but because of the whole ‘may be fatal’ thing, I figured I would challenge him later. Plus, that made more room for us.

The Ugly:
1) My sunburn. Given the fact that I always go skiing in December, it didn’t even occur to me to put on sunscreen. We couldn’t have asked for better weather. I only wore 2 layers of clothing as opposed to the 4 layers I normally wear. The problem isn’t so much that I’m sunburn as much as the inconsistency of the sunburn. Given the fashion queen that I am, I wore my nifty headband all three days. Here lies the problem. I have a huge white stripe across my forehead. I am a pretty confident person, but I am so self-conscious about this. On Day 1 back to work, I felt the need to tell everyone…co-workers, the clerk in the lunch line, random people on the elevator…everyone that I’m sunburn. It at least makes me feel better to get it out on the table so no one is left wondering if I have a skin disease, allergic reaction, fire accident or anxiety issues. Day 2 I started peeling, which is even more attractive. Add to the white stripe on my forehead bright red raw skin patches all over my face. Beautiful I tell you, beautiful.

Overall, you can clearly see that the good outweighed the bad and the ugly. We had a blast. For the record, I am still faster than Jeff and Hayden on skis. Not for long, I’m sure.

No comments: