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Skiing Vars 2006

Well we have managed to endure the coach drive, all 18 hours of it!  We are now here and into the second day of the adventure.  More of an ordeal for others!  Ah the pains of beginning a new sport!  Everyone is well, enjoying the great weather and generally joining in.  The resort is quite small, and all the more for it. No long queues, and even less French people barging in!  Sorry, I know when in Rome et al...Anyhow, I am still able to ski well and enjoy it immensely.  I am learning to do 360's on the move and should have this mastered by the end of the week.  As for others, well everyone else seems to be coping extremely well.  The food is awesome again, in fact the only reason I am writing this now instead of having a few beers is due to over eating at dinner!  Seyoum is having a real hard time learning to snowboard, all the more hilarious to those that know him!  Mr. project plan, organised and signed off!  He is now affectionately being nicknamed Bam-Bam.  Every time he falls, it's Bam! 

At the time of writing he is very battered and bruised, in fact he falls so much, the instructor has asked him to keep his weight close to the ground.  (Avalanches were mentioned.).  We are constantly on the lookout for runs that only go to the left as Seyoum has not quite got the hang of turning right yet!  Alan and Nick are doing well, and being as sarcastic as usual to Seyoum.  Good humour.  Andre and Erik are having a great holiday.  Erik and I are in the same ski group and tend to go off and do our thing in the afternoon. 

Day 3 and Seyoum has mentioned that we can now go and ski any route, since he is able to turn!  Andre is improving, Jimmy Noble is snowboarding off piste already (talented sod) but I did hear he took a massive tumble or three down the slope, head first!  In our lesson today we covered how to use the edge of the ski's to carve big turns and maintain your downhill speed.  Awesome and very fast.  One travels at around 70 km/h in parts. This afternoon Erik and I went to the Forest at the back of the village and were practising jumps while going down the piste, a bit like hitting a speed bump at 40kph, and then taking off.  We were also using the edges of the ravine as kickers to get some air.  A very pleasant day.  After a few hard falls late today, I have now mastered the art of a 360 on the move (and at more than a moderate pace). Why?  Don't know, but it looks cool and feels great!

Another day has passed and we are still alive, although getting more and more stiff as the week progresses.  Lessons continue to be helpful, and the improvement in all is very noticeable.  Seyoum and Andre are making great strides and improving well.  Some of the slacker students took the morning off, anyhow each to his own.  Nights are very relaxed, either spent playing pool or reading a book.  No use watching TV, we can't speak French!  Well another day has passed and from some of the pictures the nights got a bit more lively!  We went to a bar and played some pool, some fast and furious chess and then drank some!  Great night out, and a good, hard ski the following morning took care of the hangover.  We are now all safe and back in the U.K.  I am glad to say that the trip was a huge success and I look forward to organising the trip next year. 

For those lucky enough to earn dollars,  might provide a flight option, seeing as they can afford a taxi that's 7 times the price of an air ticket!  Bam-Bam, I hope it  has a project code?  As for the romantic couples on the trip, hope your dreams and hopes ring true.  You know who you are...more importantly, the rest of the bus knows too!

Photos in the gallery