Tuesday, 7 September 2004

Skiing and sky-writing

Listening to:

Handel, Concerto grosso, op. 4, no. 4 in F major, played by the Academy of St. Martin-in-the-Fields, conducted by Marriner.

I went skiing at Perisher Blue last Saturday. This was the first time I’d ever skied in the southern hemisphere. I learnt to ski in France, making three trips on cheap charter tours to the French Alps from the UK. Each of these trips took me away for a week. Last weekend, I just had to get up early (at 4:20!) and catch a coach from the Canberra bus station. Roughly 12 hours later, I caught the bus back, and was home by 19:30.

Skiing for just one day is a quick route to tired legs. Next year (the season is just about all over here), I will try to make sure I go a few times so that I feel a little more capable from the outset, and so that my otherwise unused muscle groups get accustomed to the exercise.

It was a rather cloudy day, and some of the snow was a little soft (I felt a little as if I was snowing through fine sand: I suppose the softness indicated that it was wet, and that made the snow heavier). But I felt there was more than enough variety in the slopes for someone of my limited ability, and it was quite beautiful to have so many trees and rocks relatively close at hand. (If you did the run called “kamikaze”, you probably got rather closer to the rocks than I would have liked.)

Great fun.

Moving forward in time: this morning on the walk into work, I saw a plane write a message by turning its con-trails on and off (or maybe it was just using white, cloud-like smoke). I watched it write the message DOMA Doma Hotels. It was pretty neat to have a message (even if it was just advertising) written to me in such grand fashion. The words didn’t last very long, even on such a beautiful, relatively still day as this, so it’s clear that the “sky-slate” is a self-cleaning one.

The weather changed rapidly too: it started pouring down just minutes after I got back to the office after lunch.