I had one of the best weekends of my life, where I went on a ski trip with my friend Anna, her parents Deb and Jay, her friends Britt, Abhishek, Jen, Dan, Rachel, and Robb, and my coworkers Sondra and Palemon. We left Friday night and got reached the town of Indian Lake in the Adirondacks pretty late. The drive was exquisitely beautiful – pitch darkness and pristine snow. The clear skies made the stars look magical. And the cabin…boy, the cabin was amazing. It is newly built with all modern amenities, but looks gorgeous and really old school.
During the drive found out that Anna’s dad is a huge Lord of the Rings fan, just like myself, and Anna actually named her son Rohan because of the region in LOTR. Something new I learned about her about knowing her over 2 years! Her parents are two of the sweetest people I have met. Her mom is the extroverted life of the party, while her dad reminded me of myself. He was quiet, but around people, and doing little things to make everyone’s life easier. He was doing all the cleanings, helping around the house, walking up to us in the outdoors with extra snow shoes in case we need them. He would warm up mugs before we could pour in coffee. Just countless tiny little gestures to make our lives easier and happier. He is a giving person, and I saw so much of myself in him that I became a huge fan! And he is a sports fanatic like myself.
We reached hungry on Friday night, so I made some scrambled eggs for folks. Saturday was supposed to be ski day, but everyone decided to ski on Sunday when it was snowing. I solved this puzzle that I hadn’t played since childhood!
We went snowshoeing in the woods behind their property to hunt an abandoned old car. Walking on top of 5-7 feet of snow was amazing. Sometimes our feet would drop nearly two feet into the snow, for those of us without snow shoes. I hiked with and without them. Some photos from the hike.
And we also found the buried car!
Rest of the afternoon was spent walking over a frozen lake near their cabin.
We went to the town to get milkshakes, and dinner was a beautiful family affair. The dining table was made from wood from the 19th century. Rest of the evening was spent watching tv, playing games, playing pool, chatting in small groups. Anna’s friends are awesome people, and I had one-on-one conversations with nearly all of them. During pool gave me a chance to learn more about the pharma industry from Anna’s friends, as well as getting to know her mom. It also allowed me to bond closer with my coworkers Sondra and Pale.
On Sunday we drove to Gore Mountain for our hike. The drive was…you can guess…magical!
Anna, Dan, Jen, and Sondra went on actual skiing while me and Palemon took lessons as we were beginners. It was a 1.5 hour lesson without using any ski poles. Just trying to get our balance right and how to stop and turn. After 1.5 hours I didn’t think I had learned something. We were supposed to drive back to New Jersey then, but Palemon decided to cancel his soccer game so we could ski more. That was how much fun we were having in this trip that a soccer fanatic decided to miss his game!
After lunch I went back on the practice slope, but a far longer one. I had to hold a J-bar to go up. First two times I fell off within a few feet. Third time I went up maybe 20 feet. Fourth time maybe 300 feet before I fell off. How, I don’t know! Fifth time I reached the top, but fell twice while coming back down. Sixth time I only fell once! Seventh time fell off the J-bar again near the top. Eighth time lost my balance, but didn’t land on my butt! This is how it look, the J-bar on the right, and had to ski till the first cabin on the left.
On the 9th try…I made it to the top without falling, and came back down without falling or losing balance! Success!
By the time I went up for the 10th time, all barriers till the very end were removed because the workers were shutting down for the day.
And this was my final run…the 10th run. From top…all the way down to the far cabin straight ahead. I turned, I braked, managed my speed, and skied all the way down!
You fail, fail, fail, fail, fail, fail, fail, fail, succeed, and then win it! If there is one trait I am proud of myself, its my perseverance. Growing up, I didn’t really go out of my comfort zone. My parents said no to doing anything, going anywhere. In the last few years, I decided to experience what life has to offer. Try things I didn’t like. Go to places I wasn’t interested in. I have done hiking, rafting, and now skiing. Older me might have stayed in the cabin. 3 yrs back I did stay in the cabin. Yesterday I went out. I made a fool of myself. I fell repeatedly. I have soreness all over. I fell and fell and fell. But I got back up. I didn’t care if I was the only person, child or adult, who kept falling off the J-bar. I kept going back up.
Aragorn said, “there is always hope”. So I never lose hope. A tennis player had a quote tattooed – “Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.” It was great to meet new people, going on a trip I barely knew anyone. Great to try a new thing. Great to persist at it. I went with no expectations and I come back with pure happiness, and soreness. So thankful to Anna, her parents, friends, and my coworkers for making this trip worth it. And to make it even better, Anna allowed me to drive her car back to New Jersey. A house of 12 adults, one baby, two dogs, and a cat…it felt like family.
Here’s my goodbye from this winter wonderland trip.